How To Store Your Luxury Watch

Proper storage is essential to maintain the functionality and beauty of your luxury watch. This guide will take you through both short-term and long-term storage solutions, as well as other essential factors to consider.

Short-Term Storage Solutions

Owning a luxury watch means investing in a piece of craftsmanship that, with proper care, can last for generations. Short-term storage solutions are essential when you’re not wearing your watch but plan to wear it again soon. Here’s a deeper look at the options available and the best practices to adopt.

Watch Boxes and Cases

Watch boxes and cases offer an excellent means of storing watches safely. They’re specially designed to house each watch separately, ensuring that watches do not touch each other and cause inadvertent scratches.

Material: Choose boxes made of sturdy materials with a soft interior lining, like suede or velvet. This prevents scratches and cushions the watch.

Size: Depending on your collection, you can opt for single-watch boxes or multi-watch cases. While it might be tempting to purchase larger boxes just in case your collection grows, it’s essential to ensure that each watch fits snugly and does not move about too freely.

Design: Many watch boxes come with clear lids, allowing you to view and appreciate your collection without constantly opening the case. However, if your storage area has a lot of direct sunlight, you might want to opt for an opaque lid to prevent unnecessary exposure to sunlight.

Watch Rolls and Pouches

Ideal for travellers or those with limited storage space, watch rolls and pouches offer a compact solution.

Material: Soft leather or fabric pouches provide protection against scratches. The interior should ideally be lined with a soft, non-abrasive material.

Convenience: Watch rolls can house multiple watches, making them perfect for those on the move. Their cylindrical design ensures that watches remain separate and are cushioned from external pressures.

Portability: Given their design, they are incredibly lightweight and easy to pack, ensuring your luxury watch is safe even on the go.

Safety Considerations

  • Placement: Always place them in a cool, dry place, away from direct sunlight, radiators, or vents.
  • Handling: Always handle your watch with clean, dry hands to avoid transferring dirt or moisture.
  • Cleaning: Regularly clean the storage solution to prevent dust and dirt build-up, which could scratch or damage the watch.

Long-Term Storage Solutions

Long-term solutions are for those luxury watches you don’t wear often or are holding onto as investments or family heirlooms.

Safe Deposit Boxes

One of the most secure long-term storage options:

Security: These boxes, typically found in banks, offer superior protection against theft or damage.  

Access: However, access can be limited based on the bank’s operating hours. If you plan to wear the watch occasionally, this might not be the most convenient solution.

Environment: Most banks are climate-controlled, ensuring a stable environment for your watch.

Customised Watch Safes

A blend of accessibility and security:

Design: Customised safes are designed with the specific needs of luxury watches in mind. They often come with built-in watch winders and compartments to store other accessories.

Security: Modern safes offer advanced locking mechanisms, ensuring your collection remains secure.

Placement: It’s best to place the safe in a discreet location, anchored to the floor or wall, ensuring it cannot be easily removed.

Environmental Considerations

Environmental factors can play a significant role in the long-term health and performance of your luxury watch. These elements can affect the internal mechanisms and the external appearance. 

Humidity and Temperature

Impact: Excessive humidity can lead to condensation within the watch, leading to rust, mould growth, and other damages. Fluctuating temperatures can cause metal parts to expand and contract, which can impact the watch’s movement.

Solutions: Maintain a stable temperature between 18-25°C. Use dehumidifiers to regulate moisture and ensure humidity remains between 45-60%. A controlled environment will significantly improve the lifespan of your luxury watch.

Light Exposure

Impact: Overexposure to light, especially direct sunlight, can cause the colour on the watch face to fade. Moreover, sunlight can cause the oil inside the watch to dry up, affecting its functionality.

Solutions: Store your watch in a dark place when not in use. If you’re using watch boxes with transparent lids, ensure they’re UV-protected or store them away from direct sunlight.

Protection from Dust and Dirt

Impact: Dust and dirt can penetrate a watch, affecting its movement. This intrusion can lead to reduced accuracy or complete malfunction.

Solutions: Ensure your watch storage solutions are sealed or closed. Regularly clean the exterior of your watch with a soft cloth, and for the bracelet or strap, occasionally use a soft-bristled brush.

Watch Winders

A must-have for automatic watch enthusiasts, watch winders keep your timepieces accurate even when not worn regularly.

When To Use A Watch Winder

Usage: Automatic watches rely on movement to stay wound. If you have a watch you don’t wear daily, a winder keeps it ticking and ensures it’s always ready to wear.

Maintenance: Using a winder can also reduce the need for frequent resetting, thus minimising wear on the crown.

Selecting The Right Watch Winder

Size and Capacity: Depending on your collection, you can choose from single-watch winders to multi-watch units.  

Rotation Options: Ensure the winder can rotate both clockwise and anti-clockwise to cater to different watch requirements.

Proper Winder Settings

Turns Per Day (TPD): Set the TPD based on your watch’s specifications. Most luxury watches need between 650 and 900 TPD.

Direction: Some watches need bi-directional winding, while others might only need clockwise or counter-clockwise. Always consult the watch manual.

Regular Maintenance and Inspection

To ensure your watch remains in pristine condition, periodic checks and professional maintenance are essential.

Routine Checks

Frequency: Check your watch every few months for signs of wear or damage.

Accuracy: Compare its timekeeping against a reliable source to ensure it remains precise.

Professional Servicing

Servicing: Depending on usage and the manufacturer’s recommendations, get your watch professionally serviced every 3-5 years.

Cleanliness: Professionals can ensure your watch is free from dust, dirt, and any internal issues.

Common Storage Mistakes to Avoid

Environment: Avoid storing near sources of heat or strong magnetic fields.

Winding: Don’t overwind a manual watch or store automatic watches without winding them for long periods.

Moisture: Never store a watch while it’s wet. Always dry it off thoroughly.

A luxury watch is not just a statement piece, but an investment. Taking the time to understand its needs, from storage to maintenance, can ensure it retains its lustre, precision, and value for generations to come. Proper care is the hallmark of a true horology enthusiast.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I keep my luxury watch in its original box for long-term storage?

While the original box is designed to present the watch beautifully and protect it during transportation, it may not be ideal for long-term storage, especially if it doesn’t offer protection from humidity or light exposure. However, if the original box is stored inside a controlled environment, like a safe or a climate-controlled room, it can suffice.

How do I know if my watch needs a winder, and what type should I buy?

Automatic watches, which are self-winding through the movement of the wearer’s wrist, benefit from winders if they’re not worn regularly. If your watch stops when not worn for a day or two, a winder can be beneficial. As for type, consider the watch’s requirements for turns per day (TPD) and rotation direction, and select a winder that matches these specifications.

What precautions should I take when travelling with my luxury watch?

When travelling, use a hard-shell protective case or a soft pouch to guard against impacts. Ensure your watch is insured, and be discreet when wearing it in unfamiliar locations. Also, be prepared for airport security checks and always communicate any concerns about your watch being subjected to scanning machines.

Where can I find professional storage solutions specifically designed for luxury watches?

Professional storage solutions can be found at high-end jewellers, watch boutiques, or specialised online retailers. Additionally, some luxury watch brands offer storage solutions tailored for their products. It’s advisable to research and consult with horology experts or fellow enthusiasts for recommendations.

Sell your watch in four simple steps

Sell your watch hassle-free. Fill out our form to sell and get a quick valuation. We offer same-day payments for sellers ensuring a smooth, transparent transaction with no surprises.