Summer 2019 broke records. The rules to go by are: The breezier the clothing, the better the extreme temperatures can be endured. But there are also rules for watch straps which makes wearing a timepiece breezy and fun even when it’s 30 degrees. Read ahead to find out how you can make the most of your watch this summer.
One heat wave after another
Europe has been experiencing a record-breaking midsummer. For the first time since weather records began, the 42-degree mark was broken in Germany - more precisely in Lingen in Lower Saxony. Other places experienced temperatures as high as 40 degrees.
Watch lovers can pursue their passion even in the hottest weeks of the year if they have the right strap. Everyone talks about the right clothes to wear for the summer, let us tell you about the right watch straps.
NATO Bands: The Summer Classic
When it comes to which bracelet is best suited for the summer, NATO bands are usually at the forefront. NATO straps originated in the British military, for which they were developed in the 1970s. The name comes from the North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and they assign specific stock numbers to all military equipment (for the straps: NATO stock numbers NSN 6645-99-124-2986 and 6645-99-527-7059).
The characteristic drawstrings are made of ballistic nylon. The material is not very absorbent, but dries quickly and is also dirt-repellent and light. In addition, the straps can easily be changed as they are pulled through between the spring bars. Since the straps are available in all possible colour variations, it’s easy to switch up your look. Watches with NATO straps are not particularly flat, however, they have a rather thick feel to them.
Rubber straps for diving watches
Most diving watches are delivered with metal straps. If you are looking for some variety, you can always use rubber straps: The straps are water-repellent and give the watch a more elegant touch, due to the appearance of the watch slightly resembling the "leather look". Since rubber straps are predestined for use in water, they usually only fit optically on diving watches (exceptions confirm the rule).
You should be careful when choosing the rubber strap: Cheap rubber straps are seldom odourless, and the underside of the strap must not be smooth, otherwise - especially in summer - the watch will slip back and forth on the wrist. It is better if the strap is perforated (a good example is the Breitling Ocean Racer Strap) or ribbed inside. Another example of a perfect rubber strap is the Patek Philippe Aquanaut. The watch shows the sporty elegance that can be achieved with a rubber strap and the wearing comfort is extremely pleasant.
Metal always goes
Sports watches have been in the lead for years. No wonder that the proportion of watches with steel straps is correspondingly high. Steel straps also have numerous advantages: The wear of metal straps is practically non-existent, the straps are resistant, corrosion-resistant and completely unproblematic when in contact with water. Mesh or Milanaise wristbands offer an often forgotten alternative to conventional steel straps: the delicate metal wristbands date from the 1930s and had their renaissance in the 1960s. The Breitling SuperOcean Heritage proves that even a current sports watch can look good on the Milanaise bracelet. Thanks to its delicate construction, it is particularly comfortable to wear and permeable to air.
Perlon straps are underrated
Everyone knows Perlon straps: In swimming pools, we attach the locker keys to our wrists using Perlon straps. Since the launch of the Nomos Ahoi in 2013, the woven nylon straps have also been known in the watch world. Perlon straps have numerous advantages: they are airy, almost infinitely adjustable and can be changed quickly because they are pull-through straps. In addition, unlike NATO straps, they are threaded in a single layer so that they can be worn much flatter. When choosing Perlon strap, one should be aware that there are many low-cost offers and that the processing quality of these straps - and especially the clasps - is correspondingly simple.
Save the leather for winter
Choosing the perfect summer strap is of course a matter of taste. There’s no doubt that leather straps are incredibly charming - there is an almost infinite variety of leather straps for all watches, from coarse calf leather straps in vintage look to elegant alligator leather straps. Or in other words: from Panerai to Patek Philippe.
Nevertheless, leather can have a disadvantage during the hot weather: it is a natural product that is affected by perspiration which can lead to it developing an odour and them wearing out a lot quicker.
If you still want to rock your leather straps in summer, you can make your decision a little more pleasant: Some leather wristbands are now equipped with water-resistant rubber on the inside so that the wristband can be worn much more comfortably. As an alternative, perforated leather wristbands (known as rally or racing wristbands) are available as these are a little more breathable.
A final word
There are many ways to make summer comfortable with a watch on your wrist. As far as the appearance is concerned, as always, only the limits of personal taste apply, whereby Perlon straps are the most appealing alternative to leather bands in our personal opinion. If you have never tried a Perlon strap before, you should definitely do so this summer. Midsummer is the ideal time for this and they offer so many advantages that you simply have to try them out.
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