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What size watch fits on my wrist?

Every watch enthusiast has wondered whether the size of their watch fits their wrist. Whether it is before buying a new piece or rediscovering a model that has not been worn for a while.

Design and general appearance are undoubtedly important selection criteria. So, it is natural to wonder if the size of your timepiece matches your body type. Or if it is not too big for us. Or if, on the other hand, it does not seem to be a paltry size when worn.

What size watch fits on my wrist? This is obviously a relevant question to ask. Indeed, this feature can help to create a rapport between you and the model you are wearing. However, it would be wrong to stop at this attribute to define the size of one’s watch.

The technical aspect 

When the size of a watch is mentioned in a technical data sheet, the diameter of the case in millimetres is often all that is considered. For this reason, only this one attribute is considered.

However, your model cannot be defined solely by its width, quite the contrary. If you compare two models with equivalent diameters, likely, they will not look the same at all when worn.

As you will have understood, it would be far too simplistic to dwell on this aspect alone. At Initium, we believe that other features contribute to the final look of your timepiece.

Just think of the shape of the case and you already have a differentiating element between the two models. The image below showing three different Patek Philippe cases speaks for itself.

However, others may be less obvious if this size issue is not addressed. 

Different Patek Philippe cases

The thickness

If we take as an example watches housing numerous complications or developed to meet certain needs (such as underwater diving watches), we can quite easily find thicknesses exceeding 12 mm.

Some brands opt for vastly distinctive designs. They strive for finesse and elegance.

Although there is no standard for the thickness of a watch, the majority are around 10 mm. It should be noted that the widest models are over 18 mm, while the thinnest are only 2 mm.

A difference in this area therefore completely changes the overall look. However, this is a crucial aspect when deciding on the size of a timepiece for one’s wrist. This can be seen in the image below comparing different models of the brand with the crown.

Comparison of three Rolex models

The crown and pushers 

The same principle can be applied to the crown and/or pushers. The size and shape of these components play a role in the impression of the size of the watch on the wrist.

Firstly, the crown and pushers are not elements that are found on all watches. If they are present, they may be small, thin, and discrete. In this case, these components will only take up a negligible amount of space on your wrist. This will not contribute to the impression that your watch is enlarged.

There are many shapes and sizes of these elements. In addition, the crown and pushers may be designed to meet a visual ideal or to serve a specific function. For example, let us imagine a chronograph model developed to be used with gloves, the pushers will certainly be enlarged to meet this need.

Again, this is something to consider when assessing the size of your timepiece for your wrist.

IWC Pilot watch

The horns and interhorns

Lugs are often forgotten when discussing the size of a watch. However, they play a significant role in the constitution of the case and thus in the final shape of your timepiece. Once again, slim, slender lugs take up little space on your wrist and therefore make your watch more elegant than if it had large, robust lugs.

The distance between the two horns also plays a key role. Indeed, it defines the width of your bracelet at the horns.

In the image below, we notice the Rolex Chronograph Moneta known for its invisible horns

Rolex Chronograph Moneta, invisible horns

The bracelet 

The strap also has an important influence on the size of the watch and its appearance.

There are straight bracelets, where the width at the lugs is the same as at the buckle.

Some bracelets are spiked and give a slightly slimmer appearance when worn. As far as thickness is concerned, you should consider whether your bracelet is curved, flat, has seams, etc.

In the picture below, you can see how the straps play a significant role in the size of the watch. If we take a steel bracelet as an example, it will often be thick, bringing a shiny aspect and making the whole model more visible. It will not look at all like a rubber or leather bracelet. Here too, the shape and thickness of the latter must be considered.

At Initium, our participants have the opportunity to choose from a wide range of bracelets. More than 250 straps in unconventional materials – vegan, leather, imitation leather, rubber, bi-material – and colours are available to compose the watch that you assemble yourself. During the Delta courses (one day), participants can select two bracelets and give their watch a totally distinctive look.

Initium bracelets

A watch size adapted to your wrist … and your personality!

A change in trends

Historically, we see that there has been an evolution in what brands offer.

So much so that in the 1920s the majority of cases were thin and discreet, rarely exceeding 34 mm.

From the late 1960s onwards, they started to get a bit bigger, usually over 40 mm.

The current trend is towards massive watches, with thick models regularly exceeding 42 mm.

A watch that suits your taste above all

As the Initium team is made up of watch lovers, we obviously discussed this issue.

We have concluded that no, there is no real rule. There are certain elements to consider when defining the size of a watch; the width, thickness, shape and size of the crown, pushers, lugs and finally the choice of strap.

But these elements only help to understand the size of a watch, nothing more.

We live in a time that allows people more than ever to realise themselves, to be and to show the world who they really are.

Even if your design creates some sort of imbalance with your body type, it will fit you as long as you and only you are comfortable with what you have chosen to wear.

In conclusion, we encourage you to choose the watch size that best suits your taste and what you want to show off.

Whether you have already made an Initium watch or would like to make one, we will be happy to help you make the right choice to reflect your identity.

Initium components