WORDS BY FELIX BISCHOF AND JOSEPH FURNESS
Many of the so-called 'watch rules' can be ignored: which side you wear it, and what you wear it with, should be entirely your call. The only rule you should pay attention to is that a watch should look well-balanced and in proportion with your wrist; ideally, it should sit a little below the wrist bone. It’s all a matter of ensuring the case diameter (the space between one side of the watch face to the other) is the appropriate size for you. Need help? Below, we spotlight the best fine watches for small, medium and large wrists.
Men's wrists that measure six inches or less are considered ‘small’ by watchmakers. If that’s you, consider a case diameter that falls between 34-36mm. For instance, the NOMOS Glashütte Tangente Date Power Reserve measures 35mm, and is one of the German brand’s most popular styles. The watch teams a pared-back, white-based dial with outsized date and power indicators. Slightly larger in diameter is the March LA.B AM69 Automatic Magnum, which measures 36mm. The watch boasts a power reserve of 42 hours and features a champagne-colored dial.
Medium wrists are considered to measure between six and seven inches and comfortably fit watches with a case diameter of 38 to 42mm. Considered on the smaller end of medium watches is the Laureato Chronograph 38mm by French heritage label Girard-Perregaux. The brand first unveiled its super wearable Laureato in the 1970s, and the style has recently been updated with a modish 18kt pink-gold case. Elsewhere, the new BR 05 collection of watches by Swiss luxury label Bell & Ross creates square cases with its signature rounded corners – a design inspired by the shape of aircraft cockpit instruments. A visually striking style, the BR 05 Black Steel is also a prime performer, with a water resistance of 100 metres and a 38-hour power reserve.
Seven to eight-inch wrists are considered large and can take a 44 to 46mm case. A key style from large wrists is TAG Heuer’s Aquaracer collection, first unveiled in 1982. The brand patented the first water-resistant case more than a century ago. And, to this day, each Aquaracer style must undergo a rigorous series of tests, including pressure cookers and being cloaked in salty fog. As a result, it’s ideal for those looking for a hardier watch. Also crafted for exploration is Ulysse Nardin's Diver Chronograph, which boasts 300m water resistance. At 44mm, it features a polished steel case topped with a rotating bezel, finessed with blue rubber detailing.