Watch straps chance up the look of a watch as well as give the ability to match a watch to an occasion. If you want to be sporty your probably want to stay away from leather and if your going into a business meeting a bright orange silicone strap probably isn’t your best friend. Straps are a fun addition to a watch collection and listed are my top 5 kinds of watch bands.
Silicone watch straps
One of my personal favorite types of straps. Not only are they super comfortable, but they are fairly inexpensive and usually come with quick release spring bars which are heaven! So easy to swap out between different colors and textures. I even personally feel that most of the colors can work on a dress watch and add a little comfort and casual cool to the watch. Check out my orient star on multiple Vario silicone straps, or even my nomos on a green silicone band. In the end silicone is just easy to wear, easy to clean, and adds variety to the collection.
They aren’t for everybody but to me they are super comfortable and look good on pretty much any watch. For dress watches specifically I feel they add a little more class than a NATO and, in the end, they are pretty much infinitely adjustable so you can always find the perfect fit. Like silicone straps, most perlons can be found fairly inexpensively and in a multitude of colors. My personal favorites are from crown and buckle and can be seen on the vintage Omega Seamaster.
For the longest time I went on a search to find a tweed strap because I thought the material looked cool and that it would look good on a watch. That’s when I stumbled upon the ones sold by Vario. They are a little stiff at first but you just have to wear them or let it sit tightened up to the wanted size on a watch pillow to wear it in. They come in so many fun colors and add a nice texture to the watch as a whole. They are a material you usually don’t see utilized but I feel that with Vario you have so many options to choose from you can find one to fit just about any watch. I’d recommend giving them a try because they are unique and well made.
For the longest time I wasn’t really a fan of NATO straps. I didn’t like the way all the material bunch up on the end of the watch or how much thicker it made the watch in general. However I have found two ways to combat this. I wear my NATOs so that the knuckles end up falling on the underside of my wrist like a traditional strap and I cut of the extra keeper to make it a single pass style. To me it is much more comfortable and aesthetically pleasing this way. Vario also offers two-piece NATOs which avoid all that hassle and I feel are pretty awesome because they have quick release spring bars. I’ve always admired NATOs because they come in so many fun patterns and colors and if you have never tried a seatbelt NATO…man you have to. They are so soft and even more comfortable than a standard NATO.
The only reason that this is last on the list is because there just aren’t many of them out there. However, you can find them with a little effort on places like Ebay or Watchgecko. To me a cork strap is a really fun alternative type of strap that adds a completely different look to a watch. It’s a material you almost never see but when you pair it with the right watch, boom its perfect! Ive personally paired a Watchgecko cork strap with both a vintage Rolex Submariner and a Zodiac Sea Wolf and I thought they looked so cool on. They are comfortable once you break them in, the light sandy type color goes well with most watch colors.
There are plenty of other types of straps such as leather, suede, exotic animals, etc but these are my favorite. A change of strap is a way to breathe new life into an old watch or match a color you’ll be wearing that day. Even if some of my suggestions are ones you don’t normally wear, give them a try! It can’t hurt and you’ll probably even like it.
Written by Xavier Sanchez
Any views or opinions represented in this blog are personal and belong solely to the author and do not represent those of people, institutions or organizations that the owner may or may not be associated with in professional or personal capacity, unless explicitly stated.
For the full range of Vario's watch straps, please visit
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