Last updated: August 20, 2021

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Our time is our most valuable asset and being aware of it makes us much more efficient. That is why pocket watches have not gone out of fashion; they are practical, elegant and also give a vintage touch to any outfit. They have managed to preserve their original essence, but they have adapted to new trends and technology, which is increasingly focused on ergonomics and comfort.

Although we live in a digitalised world, celebrities such as Tom Hardy and Johnny Depp have often been seen wearing pocket watches. The older they are, the more interesting they are. Pocket watches have become both a fashion statement and a key conversation piece. We want to help you choose the best one by showing you the types that exist, their main features and functions. After reading this guide, you will be able to identify the factors you can compare.




The most important facts

  • A pocket watch is a watch which, due to its compact size, can be carried in a pocket. It usually has a small chain called a fob to hold it in place. It is an object that never goes unnoticed, it stands the test of time regardless of fashion and adds personality to the wearer.
  • There are objects that add a touch of authenticity to those who wear them, and the pocket watch is one of them. Even if it is a modern model, it always maintains the magic and charm of the first model manufactured in Germany in the 16th century. It is designed for "transgressive" people who do not get carried away by fashions.
  • You should think carefully about what you want to use a pocket watch for. It is not the typical object that you would wear for sports or to keep track of your running times. Just like every garment, every watch has its moment. It is full of magic and is a symbol of distinction, so get to know the best ones on the market!

The Best Pocket Watch: Our Picks

Buying Guide

A pocket watch has many technical, mechanical and technological specifications. Sometimes it seems simple to choose one, but with so much choice it is important to consider all the features. Finding a pocket watch that suits your style and needs is the ideal way to make an excellent purchase.

Some pocket watches are used as fashion accessories, being part of a casual or elegant outfit.
(Photo: mg154/ 123rf.com)

What is a pocket watch and what are its advantages?

Pocket watches are watches that can be carried in a pocket due to their compact size. They have fallen out of use since the advent of the wristwatch, a more practical option. However, there are those who marvel at the design and antique style of pocket watches. Antique lovers do not hesitate to get their hands on one and catch curious glances.

In fact, a pocket watch immediately takes you back to a time when it was considered a piece of jewellery or a symbol of distinction. The aesthetics of today's examples remain true to the parameters of authenticity. Their structure remains the same; the shape of the dial, the graphics of the numerals and the long chains. Its cover has the same opening mechanism as in antiquity and has covers decorated with goldsmith's motifs.

Advantages
  • This is a designer product that brings elegance and personality. They are very affordable. They come in different materials and designs that you can adapt to your personal style. They add a touch of mysticism to every outfit.
Disadvantages
  • They are not very resistant to impact or even water. Some older models tend to be very expensive. They do not go with any type of outfit but with casual and elegant ones. Not all pocket watches are easy to read.

Open-face or Hunter-case pocket watch - what should you pay attention to?

When buying a pocket watch, it is most common to find an interesting and high-quality design. As there are many variants on the market, it is important that you know the fundamental differences between the types of pocket watches you can find. Both types of this product have their strengths.

The main difference lies in aspects such as design, practicality, style and the subcategories you can get from each. We will talk more about these features below:

Open-Face Hunter-Case
Design Open, without a lid, with a convex glass covering the dial They have a lid which is usually opened by a button at the top.
Practicality They are more practical for quick timekeeping. They are less practical, as they require an additional step.
Style Modern pocket watches with casual attire. Old-fashioned pocket watches.
Subcategories No subcategories, usually the positioning of the pendant changes. Semi-hunter, with glass top, double-hunter with top on both sides and double-semi-hunter, with a hole or glass.

How much does a pocket watch cost?

The variety of pocket watches currently on the market is not very extensive. You can find them in different presentations, but as with other types of products, their price will depend on several factors such as:

  • Brand
  • Age
  • Quality

Buying criteria: Factors that allow you to compare and rate the different types of pocket watch.

When choosing the best pocket watch, it is normal that you are not sure what criteria to take into account. You should also choose one that is quite durable and resistant, synonymous with quality. In that case, consider the following aspects:

Internal Mechanism

According to the inner workings of pocket watches, they can be:

Winding: Also known as "mechanical", they are ideal for special occasions, as their design is much more classic. They will go great with any outfit and will give you a unique touch of elegance. This type of watch uses the kinetic energy that each piece requires to move.

Quartz: If you are looking for practicality, these are the best pocket watches. They are designed for continuous use. This is a more modern and durable movement mechanism that runs on batteries or rechargeable batteries.

The most modern pocket watches are designed to be water resistant, making them more practical to use. (Photo: Giallo/ Pexels.com)

Durability

Quartz: The battery of a quartz pocket watch can last up to two years and you can get them in different presentations. In this case they are more practical, as when their performance starts to decline, simply change the power source and they are back to what they were before. However, they are not exempt from periodic revisions, as they are exposed to more risks such as knocks and exposure to water. In this case, proper sealing must be ensured.

Winding: mechanical watches require a little more technique to operate. They require more exhaustive care, so they usually need to be serviced by a specialist every 5 years or so. In addition, the workmanship required to fix them must be professional. The components and spare parts for this type of pocket watch must be of high quality to ensure that they work properly. These maintenance tasks imply an additional cost for the user.

Age

According to collectors, a pocket watch is not considered vintage unless it is 75 years old. If you find an antique watch with all its original parts, it is probably worth much more and is a wise long-term investment. However, modern designs are much more durable for frequent use. When buying a pocket watch, as well as looking at its design, we also want it to tell the time accurately.

Wind-up watches are older designs with inferior technology that are less accurate than mechanical watches adapted to modern needs. Nevertheless, many people find it more interesting to own an antique pocket watch than a more modern one, because their operating mechanism is more complex and they recall the genuine art of master watchmakers.

Pocket watches tend to become more valuable the older they get.
(Photo: annca/ Pexels.com)

Attire

Pocket watches are often used as fashion accessories to add a touch of elegance and status to every outfit. If you want to use it when you wear a suit or an elegant outfit, we recommend those in gold finishes. They tend to be more eye-catching and evoke an air of royalty.

However, if you have a more casual outfit and want to add a modern touch, a silver pocket watch will be ideal, as it won't detract from your elegance, but it won't look like an antique either. You could wear it anywhere and arouse curiosity in any conversation. They are also usually the cheapest.

In general, any type of pocket watch is ideal to wear with a dinner jacket, morning coat or tailcoat. It is the perfect type of watch for formal evening events as it is small in size. It is accompanied by the use of gloves and a handkerchief around the neck made of plain white thread.

Image source: Jakub Luksch/ Pixabay.com

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