Disclaimer: Eveswatch.com is reader-supported, meaning that I may include affiliate links in my articles for which I may receive compensation without any additional cost to you. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.
Ever wonder why people wear watches on the inside of their wrist or the opposite from the way many people wear a watch? It’s fascinating, isn’t it?
You see, some occupations find it necessary to wear a watch that way because it is convenient and practical. But some have other reasons. These reasons may be absurd to some, but that’s the ideal option for the wearer.
With that in mind, we bring you twelve key reasons why individuals prefer to wear their watches upside down.
Top Reasons Why People Wear Watches Upside Down
1. It’s a Practical Habit
For some people, the reason why they wear their watches upside down is simple: It’s a habit. They just like it that way or it’s a practical habit in their everyday life or profession.
Let’s consider a military habit. When one holds a rifle and is aiming, they don’t want to turn their wrist to see the time. They’d prefer to keep on the target and still see the time. Over time, it formed into a habit.
2. It’s a Personal Choice
A personal choice can also be a reason for wearing a wristwatch inside. Not everyone will have the same preference. Some like to wear their watch backward or they’d prefer to express their admiration for the watch in such a manner.
3. A Matter of Style
In today’s world where almost everyone wants to show off their uniqueness or are looking for ways to represent themselves, fashion timepieces come into play. They can serve as a statement to convey one’s personality. The type of watch, the presence of a watch, or the absence of it says something about the wearer.
Most likely, a person who wears an Apple watch will be different from a person who prefers a mechanical watch. This just means that wearing a watch or how one wears it is also a way to convey a message.
A man who wears a Rolex is also viewed as someone who has done well in life. He may be at a point where he can already afford to spend his money on luxurious things, like a good watch. Or that someone who wears a Jaeger-LeCoultre is someone who values technical precision or quality. The list could go on as to what a watch says about its owner.
4. To Avoid Damaging the Watch’s Dial and Face
Watch manufacturers are looking for ways to make wristwatches more durable than ever. After all, a watch rests precariously on a part of the body that is most likely to be damaged or sustain an impact when bumping into doors, vehicles, walls, handles, counters, stones, or trees.
Just think of how G-Shock watches are created by Casio using titanium to make them practically indestructible. Most outdoor watches are also tougher so it remains intact when the wearer is in rugged terrain. So, wearing a watch on the inside of the wrist could be to protect the watch face or dial from potential damage in case of collisions or minor impacts.
5. Ergonomics Reason/ Professional Benefits
Some people opt to wear their watches in an invert position because of ergonomics reasons, meaning for efficiency in their working environment. Let’s say you’re a public figure and your field of work requires you to give speeches.
Doesn’t it appear inappropriate during a speech to turn over your wrist and check time? Looking at your watch when you’re having a speech or conversation with someone can convey a message that you want to leave or that the other person is not a priority.
On the other hand, some people opt to wear their watch upside down because of professional benefits. Doctors, for instance, would find it easier to examine the pulse rate of their patients if they wear a watch upside down.
People Who Usually Wears a Watch Upside Down
- Military and special forces – When holding a firearm, they have more visibility to the time when wearing the watch backward. It may sound trifle, but in a war zone or dangerous situations, the lack of glare and the ease of use of watches become most important.
[Related post: Best Watches For Police Officers]
- Doctors, nurses, and paramedics – They often wear their watches on the inside of their arms because it’s much easier when they’re at work.
Let’s say they’re taking the blood pressure of their patients, it would be easier to look at the time when the watch is on the inside of their wrist. So, why wear Apple watch upside down? Doctors and nurses can lift their wrists quickly and examine their patients at the same speed to gauge their immediate needs.
- Pilots – Some pilots wear watches in reverse to quickly help them in timing distance calculations.
- Construction workers – Timepieces designed for construction workers are worn upside down to avoid hanging onto heavy-duty construction equipment or rods or being crushed. Builders often work with their hands so they prefer their watches positioned on the inside of the wrist so it’s a more natural position to read time while holding their tools or performing work.
- Divers – Like other professionals mentioned in this article, professional divers also prefer their diving watches. During the ascent, wearing the watch on the inside of the wrist is the best way to continuously see the watch dial or face underwater. More so since they operate the helium release valve of the timepiece or the buoyancy compensator.
Famous diving watches with helium escape valves are Rolex Sea-Dweller, Rolex Deepsea, and Omega Seamaster Diver 300M. The purpose of such a feature is to allow the trapped helium molecules to vacate the watch case safely in a controlled manner before an internal pressure reaches a point that would damage the watch.
- People with big veins on the wrist – Some people have bigger or large veins on the outer part of their wrist. That is why they prefer to wear their timepieces outside down for comfort.
6. For a Quick Glance of Time
Wearing a timepiece on the top of the wrist makes it easy to glance at the time. It makes sense for the people described above. Picture someone whose job requires him to hold his arms in a fixed position for longer periods. A painter, for instance.
At least they wouldn’t have to stop working just to check time since the watch is already facing them.
7. For Easy Button Press
As you wear a watch upside down, it makes it easier to press buttons or swipe and tap, if you’re using a smartwatch or an Apple watch. That’s why it makes sense that some watch wearers want their thumb to be in alignment to push the watch buttons.
A standalone smartwatch, such as an Apple Watch, has a tiny microphone too. When the device is rotated or oriented so the microphone is closer to your face, you will have easy access to the microphone or talk directly to it gently.
8. To Grab Attention
Wearing a wristwatch upside down is the opposite of the current fashion trend. That is why if you want to grab attention, do something that is not frequent among other people. No wonder why wearing watches backward is common among girls because it is an attention-grabbing approach.
9. To Avoid Reflection and Glare
Every human being with eyes would want to avoid reflection and glare. And since the reflection of the watch glass is harmful to the eyes, some people wear their wristwatches backward. Doing so will make it easier to read the numbers.
[Related post: Seiko Solar Watch Review]
10. To Hide the Watch
We tend to believe that we will be treated better in society if we display a degree of status through the pieces we wear, including watches. However, there are people who don’t like the idea of projecting their wealth or they simply resist the urge to show off.
As such, they may wear their watches upside down to hide the watch itself but they can still keep track of time whenever they want to. Or their reason is they don’t want to transmit the wrong signals to other people like they are in a business meeting and they don’t want to be assumed they are in a hurry when they check the time.
11. Fastening the Strap is Difficult
Another reason why do people wear watches upside down is when it becomes time-consuming and pretty stressful to fasten the strap of the wrist watches. Rather than keeping the buckling closure in one direction, why not wear the watch in reverse instead so you can easily fasten the buckle or strap of your watch?
12. To Get a More Accurate Data
Smartwatches are equipped with different sensors to record the users’ activities as well as their heart rate. So, most smartwatch users wear it upside down because they believe they would get more accurate data.
For instance, smart fitness bands measure heart rate by illuminating the pulse and scanning the blood flow near the wrist.
Watch Etiquettes and Traditions
When it comes to watch-wearing, there’s more to be said than just wrist preference. Here are some of the dos and dont’s of watch-wearing:
Wear a watch on the non-dominant wrist
Wear a watch on the opposite of your dominant hand. That means if you are right-handed, wear your watch on the left. The reason is it means your timepiece will be less likely to be jostled, bumped, and nicked.
Match your metals and colors
As much as possible, try to match the colors and metals of your watch to the rest of your outfit. Be mindful of the color of your cufflinks, collar bars or pins, rings, shoe buckles, and belt buckles, and choose a timepiece in matching metal.
For our part, we focus on the boldest part of the timepiece, including the color of the watchband, the color of the dial, or the color of the metal.
Proportion is everything
If you have a large wrist and you wear a watch with a small case, it will appear smaller on your hand. In the same way, wearing a watch with a large case if you have a small wrist will make the timepiece even larger.
Although there is no one size fits all, the proportion is everything. Try different styles of timepieces and see what appears most proportionate to you.
For gentlemen, skip the bling
There’s nothing wrong with wearing a diamond-encrusted timepiece, especially if you are a music mogul. However, flashy jewels and diamonds may not look best for the wardrobe of a well-dressed gentleman. At best, just skip the bling and opt for the more formal wristwatches.
In Summary: Should You Wear a Watch Backward?
These reasons to wear the watch inside your wrist or upside down are reasonable. At the end of the day, there is no right or wrong watch to wear. As long as you’re happy and comfortable that way, you can definitely wear a watch upside down without being singled out!
For more amazing content about wristwatches, you might want to read our other reviews at EvesWatch.com.
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.