Ultimate watch buyers guide header/introduction photo with row of watches in a shop window

The Ultimate Watch Buyers Guide

Table of Contents

Choosing the right type of watch

Picking out the right new watch can be a tough decision as there are so many different designs and styles to choose from. Our watch buying guide will explain the differences between the most traditional mechanical options to modern versions that depend on the latest technological advances.

Whether you want something for everyday wear or a luxury watch for special occasions, there is something out there for everyone.

Our watch buyers guide will help you hone your watch-buying requirements and give you access to the features and options you need when picking out your new watch.

Types of Watch Movement

Watch movements are the heart of your watch, and hold the responsibility to power it for use. Each watchmaker will have a preferred watch movement that they will use, taking their time to craft a movement that will last the test of time. Take a look at the different watch movements on offer.

Mechanical Movement

A mechanical watch is the most traditional type on offer. 

At the heart of this mechanism is a mainspring that requires winding to work. 

You simply turn the winding crown wheel on the outside of the watch to get it started and keep it wound for accurate timekeeping. 

Mechanical movements fell out of fashion when new movements hit the market, but it is now enjoying a revival.

mechanica watches

Benefits of Mechanical Watches

The mechanical movement watch is the oldest and most dependable type of watch movement. They’ve been around for hundreds of years and are still a popular choice among watch collectors. Here are some of the advantages that distinguish the mechanical movement from other watches:

Accuracy – The mechanical movement is renowned for their precision, keeping time to within a few seconds per day. This makes it an excellent choice for people who rely on their watch to keep precise time.

Durability – The mechanical watch is made of high-quality materials that can last for decades, if not centuries, if properly cared for. They are made to withstand wear and tear, so you won’t have to replace them anytime soon.

Sustainability – Mechanical movements, unlike quartz movement watches, do not require batteries. As a result, they are a more environmentally friendly option that won’t need to be replaced as frequently.

Aesthetics – The mechanical movements intricate design is a thing of beauty. It has a distinct charm due to their wind-up movement, which distinguishes them from quartz movement watches. This makes them an excellent choice for collectors of vintage timepieces.

Quartz Movements

The battery powered Quartz watch is seen as the least demanding type to wear.

It’s often seen as a more affordable watch option and is used in fashion watches as they are easy to manufacture in bulk and can be sold at a low price point.

quartz watches

How A Quartz watch Works

In its most basic form, a quartz movement watch is one that runs on batteries. A tiny quartz crystal is used to keep time. This crystal is either added to an integrated circuit and chemically etched into shape, or it is formed into the shape of a tuning fork. The oscillator is made up of that quartz crystal.

Through a series of electrical components, power from the battery is transferred to the quartz crystal. In reaction to the electrical current, the quartz oscillator begins to rapidly and precisely vibrate at a frequency of 32,768 cycles per second.

The vibrations are being counted by the circuit, which then produces electrical pulses at a rate of one per second. Pulses power the watch’s tiny motor, which keeps the watch hands ticking for precise timekeeping.

Benefits Of Quartz Watches

Quartz watches feature a battery-powered quartz movement that provides a dependable and accurate performance.

Because of their accuracy, precision, and affordability, they are among the most popular types of wristwatches on the market. They typically require battery replacements every few years to ensure continued dependability.

Precision is one of the primary advantages of quartz. The precise timekeeping keeps you on track and eliminates the need for manual winding or resetting, making it easier to tell time.

Finally, they are significantly less expensive than automatic models, and are an appealing, cost-effective option for budget-conscious watch enthusiasts due to their battery-operated movement. They offer excellent value for money due to the low number of battery replacements required every few years.

Automatic Movement

Automatic movements are powered in a similar way to mechanical watches, as they also use a mainspring to power the device. 

However, unlike mechanical watches that need winding, an automatic watch takes the wearer’s natural movement and uses this to power the watch, so you won’t need to wind it to get an accurate time.

automatic watches

Benefits of Automatic Watches

Automatic watches, also known as self-winding watches, are a stylish and eco-friendly timepiece option. Instead of relying on a battery to keep the watch running, they are powered by kinetic energy. These watches are low-maintenance and can last for decades.

The most obvious advantage of an automatic watch is that it does not require a battery or winding, eliminating the need to constantly check and replace batteries. An automatic watch will self-wind as you move and can be worn for extended periods of time without worrying about running out of power.

Because automatic watches use a self-winding mechanism, eco-conscious consumers can enjoy a watch without worrying about generating extra waste or depleting non-renewable resources.

Finally, an automatic movement watch is extremely dependable and durable. They require far less upkeep than traditional quartz watches and can be enjoyed for many years.

Watch Glass Types

Every watch comes with a clear covering that protects the movement and display from being damaged – this is known as the watch glass. There are three main types of watch glass to choose from, and we’ve shared an overview of each of them below.

mineral watch glass

Mineral Watch Glass

Mineral watch glass is generally found on mid-range watches as it is clear and easy to look through and is more expensive than acrylic but not as expensive as crystal glass. 

Mineral glass is renowned for its ability to withstand scratches, and it is both tough and durable.


acryllic glass watch

Acrylic Watch Glass

Acrylic glass is made from a mix of plastic and/or polymer and is an affordable option that is easy to shape.

Acrylic watch glass tends to be slightly pliable but is also incredibly tough and durable, making it perfect for watch design.


sapphire watch glass

Crystal Watch Glass

Crystal watch glass is most often found on the most expensive watches as it is a high-quality product. 

To make the glass as strong and resistant as it is, the glass goes through a crystallisation process to toughen it up. The most popular material is sapphire crystal glass.

Water Resistant Watches

Water resistance is an important consideration when you are thinking about buying a new watch and want to take it swimming or diving with you. 

The water resistance level given to sports watches in particular will tell you whether it will be safe to use in the water and how deep you can go underwater while wearing it.

water resistant watches

What is the difference between a Water Resistant Watch and a Waterproof Watch?

Waterproof and water-resistant watches are both designed to withstand the effects of water, but they differ significantly. Water resistant watches are designed to resist splashes or brief immersion in water, whereas waterproof watches are designed to survive much harsher conditions.

Watches are typically labelled with their level of water resistance, such as 30 metres (3ATM) or 100 metres (100M) (10ATM). This rating indicates how much water pressure the watch can withstand. A 30-meter watch is intended to withstand light splashes and brief immersion in shallow water, whereas a 100-meter watch is typically suitable for swimming and snorkelling.

Waterproof divers watches, on the other hand, typically have depth ratings of up to 1,000 metres (100ATM). This rating indicates that the watch can withstand significantly greater depths and pressure than a water-resistant watch.

The seals in a waterproof dive watch  are designed to keep out extreme pressure, making it ideal for diving and other deep-water activities.

The term ‘ATM’ refers to Atmospheres otherwise referred to in terms of distance and Meters. This is the supplier recommended, tested and approved unit to record your watches level of water resistance.

Whatever the water resistance of the watch you choose, make sure to follow any instructions that come with it and to take good care of it. This way, you can be confident that your watch will withstand whatever water conditions it encounters.

How Much Should You Spend on a New Watch?

One of the most important decisions you will make before you buy a watch is deciding on the watch brand you like and how much you are willing to spend. At David Christopher, our affordable watches start from £17.50 for the most basic digital/quartz watch and work up to over £1000 for a luxury watch brand.

Before you start shopping around for a new watch, it is wise to set yourself a budget to work within.

To help you with your watch search, we’ve shared an overview of watch brands & price tags. All you need to do is decide how much you want to spend and take a look at the different watches each brand has to offer.

Choosing The Right Watch Size

When it comes to sizing, there are watches available to suit all wrist sizes. 

However, rather than just diving in and purchasing the first watch you find that you like, take the time to measure your wrist and consider the amount of space you have available for the watch face.

The general rule is that your watch casing should take up not more than three-quarters of the flat surface above your wrist. 

If you are unsure whether a watch will fit your wrist, you can simply measure your wrist and then divide the measurement by three to get your ideal watch sizing.

Once you have a clear idea of the size you need, take the time to try on a number of different styles of watches to help you find the right solution for your needs.

Will Any Watch Fit Me?

This depends on the size of your wrists. If you have average-sized wrists, then you will find many options that work for you.

If your wrist is small or oversized, then you may need to shop around more to find the perfect fit.

How Do I Know if a Watch is Too Big for Me?

The quickest way to know if a watch is too big is to try it on and look at how it fits on your wrist. If it looks too big or feels loose, then you should choose a different model.

How To Measure the Size of a Watch Case

To measure the size of a watch case, you need to measure from side to side from the 4 o’clock mark to the 10 o’clock mark. This will give you an accurate measurement that you can use to check against your wrist.

Selecting the Right Watch Strap

When purchasing a watch, the strap is frequently an afterthought. Choosing the right watch strap, can be just as important as choosing the right wrist watch. The strap you choose will not only influence your overall appearance and style, but it will also provide comfort and durability. 

Metal, leather, and rubber/resin are the three main materials used to make straps. Each material has its own set of advantages, so understanding the differences between them can help you make an informed decision when looking for the perfect watch.

leather watch strap

Leather Watch Straps

Leather watch straps have long been the most popular option for wristwatches, and with reason.

Leather is a long-lasting material that can withstand wear and tear.

It also provides comfort while wearing a watch because leather absorbs sweat and prevents irritation.

Leather straps can be dyed in a variety of colours, allowing you to personalise and make your watch truly unique. Leather watch straps are an excellent choice if you want a classic look that is both comfortable and stylish.

Whatever type of leather watch strap you choose, make sure it is the correct size for your wrist. The leather strap may cause discomfort or even damage to your watch if it is too tight or too loose.

To keep leather straps looking and feeling their best, clean and condition them on a regular basis with a leather-safe conditioner. You can be sure to enjoy your watch for many years to come if you choose the right leather strap!

Metal Watch Straps

Metal watch bracelets are strong, refined option for any wristwatch.

Its sturdy metal construction ensures long-lasting durability, withstanding everyday wear and tear without breaking or becoming easily damaged.

Metal watch straps are also made to last longer than other straps, which means you can wear your watch for many years without having to replace it.

metal watch strap

Metal straps are available in a variety of styles and colours, making them simple to coordinate with your favourite wardrobe pieces. Metal watch straps are not only strong , but also add a stylish touch to any outfit!

Whatever type of metal watch strap you choose, its sturdy construction will ensure that you can enjoy your wristwatch for many years without worrying about wear and tear.

You’ll never have to worry about missing a special moment or looking out of date with strong, sophisticated metal watch straps. Get the perfect balance of tough and fashionable with a metal watch strap today!

Elevate your look with strong, sophisticated metal watch straps and feel confident that your watch will last for many years.

resin watch strap

Rubber/Resin Watch Straps

Resin and rubber watch straps have many advantages over metal and leather straps, making them a popular choice among watch wearers.

They are not only comfortable and lightweight on the wrist, but they are also extremely durable.

They can withstand more wear and tear while still looking great after extended use. They are frequently preferred by athletes or those who enjoy physical activities such as swimming or running.

Resin and rubber straps are much easier to clean than metal or leather straps. Stains can be quickly removed or wiped away with a damp cloth or mild soap without causing any damage to the material itself.

In general, these materials require less maintenance than their metallic counterparts – as long as you avoid exposing your watch strap to extreme temperatures or harsh chemicals such as solvents or bleach, it will remain in excellent condition with little effort on your part.

When it comes to style, resin and rubber straps typically come in a wide range of colours and designs, giving you plenty of options to personalise your look. You can find something that perfectly matches your outfit, from subtle neutral tones to bold patterns like camouflage or checkered designs.

These straps also allow you to express yourself with unique details such as texture-etched faces, interchangeable buckle designs, and so on, giving you numerous options for putting your own personal touch on the style of your timepiece.

Choosing A Woman’s Watch

A luxury timepiece is an excellent choice as a gift for a woman

It’s not only timeless and classic, but it also demonstrates to the recipient that you took the time to select something special that is tailored to their specific style and needs.

A luxury watch will complement any outfit, making it the ultimate luxury accessory for the wearer’s wrist.

Watches for Women

When purchasing a luxury watch for a lady, consider the size of their wrist to ensure that it fits comfortably and looks good on them.

When shopping for dress watches, you should also consider the watch’s material. Gold watches are often associated with higher status and provide a timeless appeal that is ideal for dressier occasions. However, other materials, such as stainless steel or rose gold, can be just as luxurious and stylish.

Whatever dress watch you choose, it will be an iconic addition to any watch collection. Your gift will undoubtedly leave an indelible impression on the recipient if you make the right choice.

watches for men

Choosing a Man’s Watch

Buying a watch for a man is a thoughtful and meaningful gesture.

It’s an accessory that often has more sentimental value than practical value.

Watches have been used to represent luxury, success, and style, and their enduring appeal is undeniable.

When choosing the perfect watch to give as a gift, is the recipient a watch enthusiast with a growing collection? Is this his first proper watch? If the latter, perhaps a luxury timepiece would be the ideal way to introduce him to the fascinating world of watches.

When giving a watch as a gift, style is also an important consideration. Is your recipient more interested in classic style or modern, trend-setting pieces? Do his watch selections tend to be more practical and functional, or does he prefer eye-catching designs that turn heads and make a statement?

Whatever your choice, your gift will serve as a lasting reminder of your thoughtfulness once you’ve answered these questions.


We hope you’ve enjoyed learning about buying a watch with our watch buyer’s guide!

Whether you want to look at chronograph watches, sports watches or even something special for someone you love, then David Christopher Jewellers is here to help.

We have a wide range of watches to suit all budgets, and our team of watch experts is on hand and ready to help you with the information and advice you need.

Take a look at our range of men’s, women’s and children’s watches today and purchase with confidence.

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