How to Measure Wrist Size for Watches: A Gentleman’s Guide


A watch is so much more than a time-telling device you wear on your wrist.

It can be a fashion statement, a complement to your outfit, or a status symbol – provided, that is, it fits your wrist as it should.

To measure your wrist size for watches to ensure the perfect fit, grab yourself a tape measure and wrap it around your wrist bone where your watch would sit. With a pen, or another set of eyeballs, take note of the measurement and lay the tape measure against a ruler to make sure you have it right.

If you’re someone who wears watches, or someone who wants to wear watches, you should know how to find the perfect watch for your wrist.

Just like with clothes, an ill-fitted watch can be a real fashion faux-paux, and it’s easily avoided if you just take the time to measure the size of your wrist.

There’s nothing that quite throws you off your game than having to constantly readjust the watch on your wrist as the clock face keeps slipping off to the side – it’s annoying, and unnecessary.

Once you’ve sized up your wrist, there are several things you’ll need to know about the design of a watch to get the best possible fit.

Taking Measurements

The first step to a well-fitted watch is to measure your wrist, of course.

To do so, your best option is to use tailor’s tape since it is specifically designed to be wrapped around body parts to take accurate measurements.

If you can’t get hold of it, though, a tape measure is fine too – so long as it is relatively flexible.

Now, follow this step-by-step process to get an accurate size reading for your wrist:

Step 1: Hold your arm out in front of you with your palm facing up. 

Step 2: Place the metal end of the tape in the middle of your wrist and then wrap itaround until you feel like it is firmly in place. 

To locate the right part of your wrist, consider where you normally wear a watch or where you’d like to wear it – this is the section you should measure. 

Step 3: Now hold the tape next to the metal end that’s resting in the center of your wrist and write down the measurement you have in cm, before converting it to mm.

For men, if the number you’ve written down is between 38mm-42mm then you have a small or medium-sized wrist.

If it’s closer to 44 or 46, you have a large wrist, so the watch you buy will have a bigger case.

For women, watches start out at 29mm which means you have a small wrist, and go up to 36mm and above.

Watch Design

The design of the watch will also play a significant role in how well it fits your wrist, so it’s something worth paying close attention to.

You need to consider both the watch case and band measurements if you are to find the perfect watch for your wrist.

The watch case is the most important of the watch’s two parts, as picking the wrong size could prove disastrous.


The case of the watch doesn’t refer to the box it might arrive in, but the outer ring of the clock face which determines the overall size of the watch.

There are two elements that influence the watch case’s size, and they are its diameter and thickness.


The diameter of the watch is going to tell you just how big it will look sitting on your wrist, and it’s the most important factor to consider if you want to make sure the watch fits you well.

The case diameter of a watch can be anywhere from 38-46mm, although of course there are some exceptions that fall outside this range.

If you have a small or medium-sized wrist which is between six and seven inches, you’ll want an appropriately sized watch case of between 38-42mm.

If you have a large wrist that’s bigger than 7.5 inches, you’ll have to go for a watch with a large case of between 44-46 inches.


The other important factor for a watch case is its thickness.

The bigger the diameter of the watch case, the thicker it is likely to be.

So that means a watch case with a diameter of 38-42mm will typically be around 7mm thick, and a 44mm watch case can be 9mm in thickness.

Thickness isn’t necessarily something you need to give a lot of thought to, as it will largely be determined by the diameter of the watch, which is the more important factor for finding a watch that fits.


The band of the watch is just as important as the case, if you’re looking for a snug fit around your wrist.

For the band, you’ll need to consider the width and the material it’s made from.


It’s normal to find a watch that has a band half the size of the case diameter.

So if you have a watch with a case of 38mm, for example, you’d expect the band width to be around 19mm.

Since this is another factor that’s largely determined by the diameter of the case, it isn’t as important a factor to think about, but it does play a part.

If you have a larger wrist, you’re going to want a wider band to accommodate it without looking as if it’s liable to snap off.


While the band’s material has no real bearing on how well it will fit your wrist, some characteristics of the different materials are worth considering.

For instance, if you were to invest in a metal watchband, you would have a watch that looks a lt chunkier on the wrist and would perhaps be best suited to a large wrist.

A leather band on the the hand is much more form-fitting and should conform to your wrist like a second skin, which perhaps makes it the better choice for a small to medium-sized wrist.

Then again, if your style is based on the idea of playing around with fashion and subverting expectations, then by all means try out different materials and see what feels good and what doesn’t.

Frequently Asked Questions About Wrist Size for Watches

What size watch should I get for a 7 inch wrist?

If you have a 7 inch wrist, which equates to 42mm, you have a large wrist so you’ll need a bigger watch case.

That means you should be looking at watch cases that range from 38mm to 42mm in order to get the perfect fit.

If your wrist is slightly over 7 inches, it’s possible that you might even need a 44mm watch case to get a snug fit.

What is the standard watch band size?

The standard watch band size is around 6.75-8 inches for women and 7.5-9.5 inches for men.

These figures refer to watches which are designed to fit the majority of people, so in your individual case it might not apply to you.

Of course though, you should take these figures with a pinch of salt given that different manufacturers and styles can vary band sizes.

How can I measure my wrist without a tape measure?

Without a tape measure or tailor’s tape, measuring your wrist is going to be tricky.

It’s not impossible, though, and if you’re resourceful you can measure your wrist with a piece of string or even shoelace.

Simply wrap the string or shoelace around your wrist where you’d normally wear a watch, mark it with a pen, and then lay the string or shoelace down against a ruler.

A Final Word From The Trending Man

Knowing what size watch you need to invest in to get the best fit is a big deal.

Nobody wants to readjust their watch constantly because it keeps sliding around their wrist, causing the clockface to be barely visible.

Plus, it’s not a great look to wear a poorly-fitted watch.

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The Trending Man

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