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Everyone assumes it’s an obvious answer for the right wrist for women’s watches, “Women wear watches on the left wrist, no debate.”
And if you choose to wear a watch on your right-hand side, it might appear awkward to people.
But have you ever wondered how this came to be? Who made the rules, and why?
What’s wrong with wearing a watch on your right hand, and why is the left wrist a preferred option for most women?
In this article, we will be taking a closer look at what wrist women’s watches go on.
If you’re one of the many who have questions and are curious on what wrist do women’s watch go on, read on. We’ve highlighted the traditional and historical reasons behind the etiquette.
What Wrist Do Women’s Watches Go On?
Not many people know this, but digital timepieces like the quartz watches weren’t the norm. When wristwatches were first invented in the 1800s, they were built to be powered manually to keep the eye functional.
People also needed to do this regularly, which meant that they had to position the watch on the wrist, which gave them the most accessible access to operate the watch crown.
As you may know, most of the world’s population are right-handed people. It, therefore, made more sense to wear a watch on the left wrist so that they can efficiently operate it using their right hand.
Although many digital watches have since been invented, many traditional watches still have their crowns on the right hand. This preference is for the apparent practical reason that it gives many users easy access to wind it whenever needed.
What Happens to Left-Handed People?
While the idea of wearing your watch on the left wrist sounds practical, it is not a hard and fast rule. Left-handed people can decide to wear a watch on their right hand.
Though, they may find it slightly uncomfortable since most watches are produced with their winding stems or watch crowns on the right hand.
To avoid this discomfort, a few brands like the Rolex and Tudor make some wristwatch collections specifically for lefties.
If “destro watches” (left-handed watches) are not your thing, there’s always the option of self-winding or automatic watches for you to try. This feature takes away the need to manually operate your watch at all, as long as you understand how it works.
Is it Best to Wear Your Watch on Your Dominant Hand?
Whether you’re right-handed or left-handed, wearing your watch on your non-dominant hand is a matter of practicality. It is easier to access, but it is also more protective for your wristwatch.
Since you use your dominant hand far more, there’s a higher chance of your watch getting damaged if you wear a watch on that wrist.
You can spill water on the watch, get it scratched, or even hit it against a hard surface.
If we’re being honest, it is also more comfortable to wear. You may experience mild discomfort from time to time while wearing your watch.
This can happen if your watch feels heavy or when the weather is hot, and you feel sweaty.
If your watch is on your dominant hand, it can feel sticky and burdensome for you.
Some Unspoken Watch Wearing Rules
You will think wearing your watch was a simple and easy decision. Well, this isn’t the case for everyone.
Over time, society has formulated several unspoken watch etiquettes that make watch-wearing seem more complicated than it should be.
While some of these rules seem like they were made with good intentions, others are baseless.
1. Wear Your Watch Upside Down
Just as many believe that ladies should wear their watches on their left wrist, some agree that women should wear their wristwatches upside down, with the watch face on their inner wrist. This technique makes it easier for them to check their watch without making it obvious.
Although this can prevent you from awkward situations where you would appear rude, it still comes down to personal comfort. If you find this style uncomfortable, you’re usually better off wearing your watch.
2. Wear Your Luxury Watch on Your Right Hand or Dominant Wrist
Another rule is that when you have a luxury watch on, it’s best to wear a watch on your right hand or dominant wrist. Since your dominant hand has more mobility, your audience is more likely to notice your fancy watch quicker.
As brilliant as this sounds, it all comes down to preferences. Doing this isn’t a wrong choice if you believe you can adequately protect your watch, even if it’s on your dominant hand. Remember that more mobility on the hand also means more risk to your wristwatch.
3. For Women, Wear Your Watch on Your Right Wrist
Additionally, some people claim that while men should wear their wristwatches on the left wrist, women should wear theirs on the right hand.
This rule is extraordinary since wristwatches were first invented for women and not men. The first wristwatch designed by the Partek Phillipe Swiss Watch brand was for women.
Back in the day, pocket watches were used by men, while wristwatches were worn only by women. It wasn’t until the first world war that men began to wear watches.
Field watches were invented for the soldiers, who found them more accessible and functional than pocket watches.
In light of this, it is impossible to see how the watchmakers could have had a specific wrist in mind for men or women since they originally only had to consider women.
4. Wear Your Watch Which Side You Want
Are there psychological reasons behind choosing a wrist for your watch?
Some people claim it is a tell-tale sign of a dominant personality, indicates certain behavioral traits, or even symbolizes association with some organizations.
While this might be true, many believe these are unfounded claims devoid of substantial evidence. Unless those organizations make their chosen style clear to everyone, there will always be people who wear their watches in a like manner without knowing.
Suppose many people use this style but have no intention of associating themselves with any organization. In that case, this defeats choosing the type in the long run.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are answers to common frequently asked questions about the right wrist for women to wear their wristwatches:
Can I wear my wristwatch with a bracelet?
Yes! Wearing a wristwatch with a bracelet on the same arm has long become trendy.
It’s also fashionable to wear a bracelet watch with a different design from your bracelet. However, some advise that you wear a thin bracelet so as not to make the dial of your watch appear inconspicuous as it sits on your wrist.
So you can choose to wear a watch with your bracelet on the same arm, be rest assured, it is fashionable.
Can I wear a watch on the inside of my wrist?
There are unconfirmed claims that wearing your watch in this fashion gives you a feminine look. However, people (men included) are trying this style simply because it works for them.
It makes it easier for you to glance at your watch without appearing rude, bored, or uneasy. It also has a certain feminine appeal since it’s more subtle and graceful. If you find this adaptable, you can include it as part of your everyday charm.
What if I prefer to wear my watch on my right wrist?
The good thing is that wearing your watch on your right also benefits. Since it’s probably your dominant hand, you may find it easier to check the time when your wristwatch is seated on your right wrist, and that’s okay.
You can also make a bold fashion statement by having your watch on your right. Since you move that hand a lot more, your lovely timepiece is more likely to get noticed.
And like all things in life, you need to determine if the benefits outweigh the non-benefits. Doing this should help you to make your decision easier.
Then again, if you’d instead use your right wrist irrespective of benefits or no benefits, then, by all means, go ahead.
People wear watches for so many reasons, and one of the main reasons is to look good.
Given the reasons above, determining the “appropriate” wrist for your watch depends on your comfort. It also depends on how it adds to your fashion, regardless of the social rules.
It will discomfort you to stick with a socially made-up rule, so if you find that wearing a wristwatch on the left-hand remains suitable for you, then stick with it. If not, feel free to switch to your other wrist.
Whichever wrist you choose, indeed, you will always look fabulous.
If you liked this article, you might want to read our other articles at EvesWatch.com.
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My name is Eve Acosta and I’m the person behind this site. Watches are what get me ticking ;).
No, but seriously, I just love watches, I have over 30 myself. It’s an obsession of mine, which is why my husband recommended me to put my hobby into some good use and build this site – so I did.
My passion for timepieces came from the fact that my parents own a small chain of shops selling timepieces. I’ve worked at the shop since I was 11 and fell in love with the merchandise.