As wearable tech gets smaller, slimmer and sharper, the smartwatch is becoming a status symbol among fashion-forward men.
Designed to fit in seamlessly with your lifestyle, the tech infused wristwatches infiltrating the mainstream are now able to offer a certain je ne sais quoi to your everyday wardrobe.
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If you have the eye for it, you'll be able to pair watches, straps and faces with any outfit as if nothing has changed. Need some guidance? Here are eight tips on how to style your smartwatch for any occasion.
Custom-made is better than ready-made
With parties galore during the holiday season, it is inevitable that the smartwatch you have invested in will influence your wardrobe choices, especially if your strap doesn't match the majority of your staple looks.
To make life easier, try MODE's "snap and swap" straps, Casetify's interchangeable bands or have a read of our edits of third parties straps for the big smartwatches like the Apple Watch Series 3. These give you the power to customise your smartwatch on a whim. This means that you can dress down with a colourful silicone strap or dress up with a slick and subtle leather one. Just make sure that your wristwear matches your shoes.
At the Office
Relax your work style by rolling up your sleeves
Why, might you ask? Well, it makes sense to show off that bad boy that you paid a lot of money for, especially if you went the designer route.
Quite stylish when done correctly, rolling up your sleeves – fairly neatly – will allow you to 'dress down' your work outfit so you can go from desk to happy hour with ease. The only exception is a super corporate environment where sleeves leaving a man's wrists is frowned upon.
Subtle vibrations are the way forward
In this day and age, a smartwatch can keep you connected with the flick of your wrist. The thing is, when you are dining out or attending the family Christmas dinner, such a move could send disapproving looks your way.
This is when discreet features such as subtle vibrations on Android Wear watches like the Diesel On Full Guard (above) mean that you can receive notifications in a social setting in a less intrusive way. Also worth a look are the cinema mode settings that stop the screen blaring brightly from your wrist at the table.
On the Go
Change your face
If you're the kind of guy who likes to switch up their style within the same day, then you'll be glad to know that your smartwatch can keep up with you. With the ability to choose from and tweak lots of analogue and digital-style watch faces, fashion-conscious timepieces like the Emporio Armani Connected (above) and Michael Kors Access Grayson (main image) are designed to provide countless ways of matching your watch to your favourite sweater.
If you're not satisfied with the pre-installed faces, then you can step up your game with Facer, a watch face customisation platform for Android Wear and Tizen smartwatches. With 15,000 free and premium faces available, Facer is the nirvana for those looking to discover the perfect watch face to suit their daily mood.
Try a charcoal grey or navy-blue suit
If you prefer a modern luxe look from your functional timepiece – something like this Tag Heuer Connected Modular 45 with a subtle metallic bezel and lugs plus tan leather strap – then be prepared to step away from the basic black suit into a more slim-fit charcoal grey or navy-blue. Although a little bit trickier to style than the default black, it is possible if you don't mind the attention.
Remember to make sure your watch is subtly peeking out from under the cuff of your shirt and that you've finished the look off with a pair of brown/tan leather shoes.
Less is more
If you tend to wear jewellery then our advice for a first date applies to the whole outfit: less is more. That's especially when accessories have to co-habit alongside your smartwatch. Showing off your style credentials by choosing something big and flashy won't leave much wrist space for a watch like the Samsung Gear Sport or even a sizeable hybrid like the Frederique Constant Horological Smartwatch Classics (above).
The solution is to wear accessories that are a little more on the thin side – think strings and rope cords. Although there are some exceptions to this rule, the most straightforward approach is to keep the jewellery understated, because if the star isn't the smartwatch, then what's the point?
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Out for a Run
Get your smartwatch a workout buddy
Although smartwatches by Apple, Fitbit and Garmin can make for great personal trainers, they can work even better when they are partnered up with another device like the easy on the eyes Under Armour SpeedForm Gemini 3 RE smart trainers. For runners, these shoes have the ability to track and store virtually every running metric – including if you're fit to run. And don't forget to accessorise with a stylish pair of smart sports earbuds like the Jabra Sport Elite, for music and heart rate tracking, too.
When in Doubt…
Make your trusty mechanical timepiece smart
Prefer the look and feel of a traditional watch but find yourself wondering whether you could be missing out on essential tech? You have quite a few options now.
Bringing new functionalities to your tech-less ticker, the CT Band comes in silicone and leather, is compatible with any watch that has a removable wristband and offers a small OLED screen for alerts.
Also worth a look is the Chronos disc, which sits underneath the watch body, the MMT E-Strap and the Frederique Constant E-Strap which also does fitness tracking.
If this sounds way too complicated, then look to the Skagen Connected 2017 line of smartwatches – the Jorn with Cognac strap is pictured. This hybrid is a great starter tech timepiece for anyone with Scandi-inspired, minimalist style and looks identical to traditional watches.
If you want something more classic, Fossil Group has also brought a similar approach to men's watches from Emporio Armani, Michael Kors and more.
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