Timeless Designs

Three Watch Styles Every Guy Should Own


By Lisbeth Levine

When it comes to watches, one isn’t enough. Every man “needs at least three watches in his wardrobe,” says Thomas Bennedsen, senior creative director at Skagen. “I compare it to shoes. You have shoes you go running in, shoes you go to dinner parties in and shoes you wear on weekends.”

In watches, this translates to a sporty watch, a refined watch and a relaxed watch. Each style comes with its own set of functional and stylistic considerations. And Bennedsen points out: “For men who are part of the less-is-more crowd, the watch becomes one of the few places where you can accessorize.”



This is the watch you wear when competing in a triathlon, driving a race car across Utah’s Bonneville Salt Flats or ice climbing in Norway. Or simply when you’re heading to the gym. A chronograph watch offers the benefit of a built-in stopwatch and conveys a look that is both high-tech and rugged. Look for a metal or silicone strap as both are durable and aren’t damaged by perspiration or water. Titanium ranks as a top choice in materials as it’s both strong and light.

Recommendation: Balder Titanium Chronograph.



When you’re wearing a suit or anything sleek and polished, this is your go-to timepiece. The dial is clean and streamlined, the hardware is unobtrusive, the leather strap is smooth and fully turned at the edges and the watch is slim enough not to interfere with the movement of your shirt cuffs. If it’s a mesh band, opt for finer mesh in a polished finish. Colors tend to the monochromatic and subdued.

Recommendation: The Holst Slim Leather Watch.



This is the weekend watch, the one you wear with jeans and a T-shirt. The dial might wink with a pop of color and you can choose more contrast among the elements. With a leather strap, the band is thicker with a straight-cut (not turned) edge and possibly hand-tacked stitching. If it’s a metal band, heavy gauge mesh in a brushed finish conveys more of an off-hours look.

Recommendation: Ancher Heavy Gauge Mesh Watch with blue dial.