Author: Rob Nudds
Mother’s Day is just around the corner, and what could be a better way to show your appreciation than with a beautiful new watch?
In the past few years, we’ve seen more and more high-end watches designed for women released. That means that there’s a wider scope for the kind of timepiece – and price point – you’re able to consider.
For the purpose of this article, I’ve selected five watches from three different price brackets to help you make the perfect decision for the most special of women.
Price Range 1: $100-$500
Tissot Trend Pinky Silver Dial Ladies Watch T0842101601704 $139.99 (reduced from $295)
At this price point there are a couple of angles you can take. That depends, of course, on who you’re buying for. If you’re gifting a watch to someone who cares more about function than form then you’re going to be looking in a completely different direction. But if you’re buying for a fledgling fashionista, buying a piece that is repping the same influences as the major players in haute couture is the way to go. Crucially, when buying in this vein, the brand name is still important. Not so much because it will matter to the wearer, but more as a mark of quality. This Tissot Trend Pinky Silver Dial Ladies Watch nods to the double-strap trend popularised by Hermes and their Cape Cod range over the past few years. It’s also from a reputable Swiss maker with a large and efficient after sales team. When it comes for bang for your buck, you can’t get much better than this.
Certina DS First Lady Ceramic Chronograph Black Dial Ladies Watch $259.99 (reduced from $860)
It is genuinely amazing how different brands have different followings the world over. In some territories some brands are virtually unknown; in others they can be the top dog. Take Certina, for example: Owned by the Swatch Group (the same group as Tissot), and in possession of a long history, Certina is less well-known outside of the European continent. That said, the watches are tough, well made, and reliable. This model utilises more feminine colours and a delicate dial pattern, but still comes off as a rugged daily wear. Perfect for a confident dresser that wants a statement piece with credibility.
Alpina Horological Smartwatch Black Guilloche Dial Stainless Steel Case Ladies Quartz Watch $265 (reduced from $1,150)
This one is ideal for the more active woman in your life. The robust stainless steel housing gives an assured presence on the wrist. It’s also bang up to take in terms of functionality, with smartwatch connectivity. Alpina is a name less well-known outside horological circles, but for those in the know it would get a respectful nod for being somewhat offbeat.
Movado Serio Black Dial Stainless Steel Ladies Watch 0606383 $299.99 (reduced from$995)
The Movado Museum watch on which the Movado Serio Black Dial is based is a stonewall classic. The brand is now part of the eponymous Movado group, and is known for little more than this iconic design. It’s been reworked hundreds of times since its debut almost half a century ago, but nothing beats the silver circle on black background. Feminine diameters and a stainless steel bracelet make this a versatile, comfortable, and durable daily beater.
Frederique Constant Slim Line Silver Dial Gold-Plated Unisex Watch 235M4S5 $349.99 (reduced from $895)
And now for a bit of class. Rounding out this entry-level price bracket is the Frederique Constant Slim Line Silver Dial watch. The fact this is a unisex watch accounts for its slightly larger diameter, but the quartz movement keeps this slim and appropriate for both male and female wrists. A timeless classic from an evermore respected maker of quality watches at accessible prices.
Price Range 2: $500-$1000
ORIS Big Crown Two-Tone Automatic Silver Dial Ladies Watch $599 (reduced from $1,850)
Entering the middle price bracket gains you access to some pretty powerful brand names. Due to the proliferation of quartz movements used in women’s watches at this price point, you can actually expect a fair deal of quality in the case and dial manufacture (as that’s really where the difference between this bracket and the lowest bracket can be seen). Case in point, the Oris Big Crown Two-Tone Automatic mixes stainless steel with rose gold plated elements to create a versatile bracelet watch that looks at home with a top and heels, as it does with jeans and a t-shirt.
Hamilton Navy Pioneer Automatic Silver Dial Ladies Watch H78215553 $625 (reduced from $995)
For the action woman in your life, the Hamilton Navy Pioneer Automatic is a seriously utilitarian timepiece. Ideal for women who have an interest in watchmaking, this Hamilton is the first automatic (mechanical watch wound by the movement of the wearer’s wrist) on the list. It’s highly legible and makes a real statement of seriousness.
Gucci Interlocking Automatic Ladies Watch YA133516 $675 (reduced from $1,020)
At the other end of the scale we have the ultimate fashion entry at this price point. A rose gold plated case surrounds a mother of pearl dial for an extremely feminine result. Horologically speaking, there isn’t much of interest, but from an aesthetic perspective it’s hard to rival the impact and name power at this price point.
Longines Dolcevita Silver Dial Stainless Steel Ladies Watch L57554716 $875 (reduced $1,250)
An absolute classic. Reminiscent of classic Cartier cases, the Longines Dolcevita is a timeless watch that brings together all the best elements of a brand that does elegant femininity as well as any other. At under $1,000 it really is a quality, long-term option. This style has persevered for years and shows no signs of going anywhere any time soon.
TAG Heurer Carrera Blue Dial Midsize Watch $995 (reduced from $1,299)
A rugged, mid-sized watch for active women with a penchant for major watchmaking names. Swiss brand TAG Heuer is one of the most popular mainstream marques, courtesy of the LVMH group based in Paris. This particular watch offers great presence and a sportier colorway for those who prefer a sense of strength on their wrist.
Price Range 3: $1,000-$5,000
Tudor Black Bay Automatic Black Dial Ladies Watch $2,195 (reduced from $2,612.50)
At this price point two things suddenly become accessible: Real jewelry watches, and interesting watch movements, and world famous brands. Sometimes, at the top end of this bracket, it’s possible to get both, but for the first entry at this level we’re going for a subtle offering from Rolex’s sister company. Tudor, after dwindling sales and popularity, experienced a major relaunch and revamp in 2009. Backed by the immense advertising budget of their big brother, they have gone on to become on of the most visible and trendy brands amongst fervent horophiles and the wider fashion community. With Lady Gaga and David Beckham as ambassadors, you can’t score much higher on cool factor. Rolex mechanics in a humble housing. The combination is worth every cent.
Dior Christal Blue Mother of Pearl Dial Automatic Ladies Watch $2,495 (reduced from $7,250)
Dior knows their lane, while producing a colorful bracelet watch with a mother of pearl dial is right in their wheelhouse, the fact it is powered by an automatic movement pushes this piece over the top. It’s an absolute steal at this price point, and ticks every box this esteemed maison could possible have hoped to tick.
Omega Seamaster Automatic Chronometer Black Dial Unisex Watch $2,995 (reduced from $6,100)
While James Bond is renowned for wearing an Omega, people rarely wonder what Money Penny has strapped to her wrist. I’d like to think they’re both too busy stopping bad guys to actually go shopping, so I reckon MI6 must have a supply deal with Omega and thus it follows that she’d wear something similar. The orange accents of this Seamaster Automatic give the dial a bit of vitality and help with legibility when on a world-saving mission. Perfect for the woman who fancies being the next 007.
Cartier Ballon Bleu Silver Dial Stainless Steel Ladies Watch $3,975 (reduced from $4,370)
The epitome of femininity in a brand. Just the sound of Cartier’s name elicits the sense of class and elegance their watches back up with aplomb. Despite being regarded as one of the greatest jewelers on the face of the Earth, Cartier has some serious watchmaking chops, having contributed several major inventions to the industry. None more so than the first watch designed to be worn on the wrist… Yeah. That major…
Rolex Lady Oyster Perpetual 26 Olive Green Dial Stainless Steel Oyster Bracelet Automatic Watch$4,575 (reduced from $4,850)
At the top of the desirability tree, who else? Rolex is, in my opinion, no longer a watch brand; Rolex is a phenomenon. The rules just don’t apply. For the most part, buying luxury wristwatches is like buying a luxury car. A huge amount of the value evaporates as you drive it away from the forecourt (that’s why getting a good price is essential). Rolex is one of a scant handful of brands that seems to be able to swerve that reality on occasion. I’d always suggest you look for an emotional rather than financial return when you buy a watch, but if you want something that is timelessly stylish and has a better-than-average chance of appreciation? This is the brand to go for.