Watches For Left-Handers: What’s The Difference?

watches for left-handers

Left-handed people are in the minority, making up only 10% of the population. If you’re a left-hander, you know how frustrating it can be to use everyday objects designed for right-handed people. Watches are no exception. While most watches are designed for right-handed wearers, there are options available for left-handers. But what exactly makes a watch suitable for left-handers?

Do left-handed watches exist?

The short answer is yes, left-handed watches do exist.

If you’re a left-hander, you may have noticed that wearing a watch on your right wrist can be uncomfortable and awkward. Fortunately, there are watches designed specifically for left-handers that can solve this problem. In this section, we’ll explore the differences between watches for left-handers and those designed for right-handers.

Design Differences

One of the most noticeable differences between watches for left-handers and those for right-handers is the placement of the crown and pushers. In watches designed for right-handers, these features are typically located on the right-hand side of the case. This can make it difficult for left-handers to adjust the time or use the chronograph function.

In contrast, watches for left-handers have the crown and pushers on the left-hand side of the case. This makes it much easier for left-handers to operate the watch without having to remove it from their wrist or use their non-dominant hand.

Wearability and Comfort

Watches for left-handers also tend to be more comfortable to wear on the right wrist. This is because they are designed to fit the contours of the wrist when worn on the opposite arm. Additionally, watches for left-handers often have a different strap orientation, with the buckle or clasp on the right-hand side of the wrist. This can reduce discomfort and irritation caused by the strap rubbing against the skin.

Overall, if you’re a left-hander, investing in a watch designed specifically for your needs can make a significant difference in terms of comfort and usability. With the crown and pushers on the left-hand side of the case and a strap orientation that fits the contours of your wrist, you can enjoy all the benefits of wearing a watch without any of the discomfort or awkwardness.


watches for left-handers

What To Look For When Buying A Left-Handed Watch

Investing in a watch, particularly a left-handed one, is a significant decision that requires careful thought. Watches are not only practical accessories but also stylish expressions of one’s personality. For the left-handed individual, the quest for the ideal timepiece can be slightly more complex. Below, we delve into key aspects you should consider when buying a left-handed watch:

1. The position of the crown

One of the most important factors to consider when choosing a watch for left-handers is the movement and crown position. Traditional watches are designed for right-handed individuals, with the crown positioned on the right side of the case. This can make it difficult for left-handers to adjust the time and date, as well as wind the watch.

Left-handed watches, on the other hand, have the crown positioned on the left side of the case, making it easier for left-handers to use. Additionally, left-handed watches typically have a movement designed to accommodate the left-handed orientation.

2. The size and weight of the watch

When browsing for left-handed watches, you might notice they can be somewhat larger and heavier than their right-handed counterparts. This is not a universal rule, but certain brands tend to create more substantial, robust designs for left-handed watches. The size and weight of a watch can considerably affect its comfort and wearability.

It’s crucial to try on the watch before finalising your purchase, or if buying online, ensure there’s a good return policy. Check for comfort, how it fits on your wrist, and whether its weight feels comfortable during extended periods of use. You wouldn’t want a watch that looks fantastic but ends up spending most of its time in a drawer because it’s too heavy or bulky.

3. The type of strap

Another important consideration when choosing a watch as a left-hander is the strap and buckle adjustments. Traditional watches often have the buckle on the left side of the strap, which can be uncomfortable for left-handers to wear. Left-handed watches, on the other hand, have the buckle on the right side of the strap, making it more comfortable for left-handers to wear.

Additionally, left-handed watches often have straps that are designed to fit the left wrist more comfortably. This can make a big difference in terms of comfort and wearability.

Remember, purchasing a watch, especially a left-handed one, is a personal journey. It’s a combination of functionality, comfort, style, and personal expression. By considering the above factors, you’re sure to find a timepiece that not only serves its practical purpose but also complements your style and, most importantly, respects your left-handedness.

Right-Handed Watches vs. Left-Handed Watches

The experience of wearing a watch tailored to your dominant hand can be quite distinct. For a left-handed individual, using a traditional right-handed watch may mean uncomfortable wrist contortions or removing the watch entirely to adjust the time. However, a left-handed watch eliminates these inconveniences, enhancing wearability and ease of use. While there are some subtle differences between right- and left-handed watches (as stated above), the truth is that most watches can be worn on either hand. So, if you’re a lefty, don’t worry – you’ll still be able to find a watch that suits your needs!

How To Adjust A Left-Handed Watch Strap

While the market does offer a range of left-handed watches, you may find yourself in a situation where you already have a cherished timepiece, but its right-handed design isn’t tailored to your needs. The good news is, with a little bit of tweaking, you can customise it to better fit your left-handed preferences. Here’s how you can adjust your watch strap to suit your left wrist:

Tools required

Before you start, you’ll need a spring bar tool, a small device designed to remove the spring bars that hold the watch strap in place. These are inexpensive and can be purchased from many online retailers. Ensure you have a clean, flat surface to work on to prevent any small parts from getting lost.

1. Removing the existing strap

Start by using your spring bar tool to remove the existing strap. Most straps are attached with spring bars at the lugs (the points where the strap attaches to the watch case). Use your tool to push down on the spring bar, releasing the tension and allowing you to remove the strap.

2. Choosing a left-handed strap

When choosing a new strap, bear in mind that you don’t necessarily need a specific “left-handed” strap. You’re essentially seeking a strap design that feels comfortable when worn on the left wrist. The strap should be such that the longer half with the holes is attached to the 12 o’clock position of your watch, and the shorter half with the buckle is attached to the 6 o’clock position. This will ensure that the strap works in line with your left-handed use.

3. Attaching the new strap

Once you’ve chosen your new strap, you’ll need to attach it using the spring bars. Typically, the buckle end of the strap attaches to the top (12 o’clock) side of the watch, and the other end attaches to the bottom (6 o’clock). This reverses for left-handed wear. Slide the spring bar into the new strap, align it with the lugs, and use your spring bar tool to push the spring bar into place. Repeat the process with the other half of the strap.

4. Adjusting for fit and comfort

Finally, try on your watch and adjust the strap for a comfortable fit. You’re looking for a balance between too tight (which could restrict blood flow) and too loose (which could allow the watch to move around on your wrist).

By following these steps, you can adapt a right-handed watch to be more left-hand friendly. Remember, though, this is more a matter of strap comfort than watch functionality. The crown will remain on the right side, which may still make adjustments a bit tricky. For a fully left-handed watch experience, purchasing a timepiece specifically designed for left-handers is the best route.

Brands That Make Left-Handed Watches

These brands understand the unique needs of left-handed individuals and create wristwatches that not only serve their timekeeping needs but also enhance their wearing experience. Among these brands, Citizen, Seiko, and Orient stand out with their popular left-handed models. Let’s delve deeper into their offerings:

1. Timex Expedition Scout

The Timex Expedition Scout is a classic watch that’s popular among left-handers. It features a large, easy-to-read face and a durable leather strap. The crown and buttons are located on the left side of the watch, making it easy to adjust the time and settings with your left hand.

2. Seiko 5 SNK809

The Seiko 5 SNK809 is a stylish and affordable left-handed watch. It has a sleek black dial with white Arabic numerals and a day/date display. The crown and buttons are on the left side of the watch, making it easy to operate with your left hand. The watch also has a durable nylon strap that’s comfortable to wear.

3. Luminox Navy SEAL Colormark

The Luminox Navy SEAL Colormark is a high-performance left-handed watch that’s designed for rugged use. It features a durable black polymer case and a scratch-resistant mineral crystal. The crown and buttons are located on the left side of the watch, making it easy to operate with your left hand. The watch also has a comfortable rubber strap that’s perfect for active wear.

4. Omega

Omega has produced watches that are popular among left-handed wearers due to their design and functionality, such as the Seamaster and Speedmaster models. While not specifically designed for left-handers, their robust and versatile design makes them a popular choice.

Do Rolex Do Left-Hand Watches?

Rolex doesn’t specifically market left-handed models, but their balanced design makes them adaptable for left-handed users. However, the introduction of the black-and-green GMT-Master II with the crown on the left side, released in March 2022, marks Rolex’s entry into the market of left-handed or “Destro” watches.

This model is specifically designed to be worn on the right wrist. This release, under the leadership of Jean-Frédéric Dufour (the current CEO of Rolex, who is left-handed) signifies the brand’s acknowledgement and support for left-handed individuals by mass-producing and marketing a watch that caters to their needs.

This is a notable shift from Rolex’s previous approach, as “Destro” watches from Rolex were historically rare and usually surfaced only during auctions, without being a part of their officially advertised product line.

Frequently asked questions

What is a left-handed watch?

A left-handed watch, also known as a ‘destro’ watch, is designed specifically for left-handed individuals. The main difference lies in the position of the crown (the knob used for setting the time), which is on the left side of the watch case rather than the right. This design allows left-handers to wear the watch on their right wrist and adjust the settings using their dominant hand.

Do I need a left-handed watch if I’m left-handed?

It’s not a necessity but more a matter of comfort and personal preference. If you’re left-handed and find it awkward to adjust a traditional watch with your non-dominant hand, a left-handed watch might provide a more comfortable experience.

Are left-handed watches more expensive?

Not necessarily. The price of a watch typically depends on the brand, materials, craftsmanship, and features rather than the positioning of the crown. You can find left-handed watches across various price ranges, from affordable models to high-end luxury pieces.

Can I wear a left-handed watch even if I’m right-handed?

Absolutely. The choice of watch style, including the position of the crown, is entirely up to the wearer. Some right-handed individuals prefer wearing a watch on their right wrist or appreciate the unique design of left-handed watches.

Where can I buy a left-handed watch?

Many watch retailers and online platforms carry left-handed watches. Brands such as Citizen, Seiko, and Orient, among others, produce left-handed models. Make sure to purchase from authorised retailers to ensure authenticity and warranty coverage.

Can I adjust a right-handed watch to suit my left-handed needs?

Adjusting the strap can make a right-handed watch more comfortable for left-handers to wear, but it won’t change the position of the crown. For a fully left-handed watch experience, it’s best to choose a watch specifically designed for left-handers.

Does a left-handed watch function differently from a right-handed one?

No, a left-handed watch functions just like a right-handed one. The only difference is the position of the crown and potentially the orientation of the dial elements, designed to offer ease of use to left-handed wearers. The core function, telling time, remains the same.

What celebrities wear left-handed watches?

Some of the most famous lefties in the world – including Barack Obama, Oprah Winfrey, and Angelina Jolie – have been known to wear left-handed watches.

Is there a traditional wrist on which men should wear a watch, and does this differ for left-handers?

Traditionally, men wear watches on their left wrist. However, for left-handed individuals, it is more comfortable and practical to wear a watch on their right wrist. There is no set rule for which wrist a watch should be worn on, and it ultimately comes down to personal preference and comfort.

Is it socially acceptable for someone to wear a watch on their right wrist?

Yes, it is socially acceptable for someone to wear a watch on their right wrist, particularly for left-handed individuals. In fact, many left-handed individuals prefer to wear their watch on their right wrist, as it allows for more comfortable and natural movement of the wrist.

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