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In my last post, I showed lots of different combinations of watch bands to go with my two favorite Apple Watch 7 colors, Starlight and Midnight. This was meant to give you an idea of the ways you could make your watch look and to give some ideas for your second band. If buying a new Apple watch, I recommend getting one with the cheapest options possible, and then getting a cool dupe band afterward!
The good news is that 3rd party Apple Watch bands are very plentiful and pretty cheap. You can buy premium watch bands that are not from Apple, but you don’t really need to. In my experience, twenty dollars will get you a quality metal band, or multiple rubber bands.
Here are some of my favorites:
Cheap and classy stainless band
I wear this one about half the time. It comes with a link remover, which is what you have to use in order to adjust the band. This is also for me the only downside, as there is no way to do any type of fine adjustment. You’re going to be limited to adjusting in increments of one link, which luckily for me worked out pretty well. But it is possible that you could end up with a fit that is a smidge too tight or loose. This is basically true of most bands, even rubber ones as all you have for adjustment is the holes on the band.
Silicone band alternatives with lots of colors
I like this 6 pack of rubber bands as it gives you lots of different options to try out or to wear with different outfits. I find the fit and comfort to be about the same as the Apple version. The only downside is that the color of the bands is less vibrant than what Apple offers. I would say that the colors have a bit of a chalky hue to them, so they won’t pop as much as the version that Apple says for $49.99 each.
Stretchy and Stylish
CCNutri (and Recoppa) Nylon Solo Loop: See below
These are next on my list to get, so I’ll update once I have them. While they are available from different resellers under different names, the reviews of these are glowing! Since there were so many reviews, I only checked the ones with photos attached on Amazon. This can be a good way to filter out fake reviews and to make sure that the product looks the way it’s supposed to. The biggest downside I’ve seen is that one reviewer with a latex allergy said that they had an allergic reaction, so if you have allergies perhaps steer clear.
One thing I like about these is that they will fit almost anyone since they are flexible and stretchy, accommodating a 4.3-8.7″ wrist. Since it is stretchy taking it off every day will be much easier, as you’ll probably be taking it off twice a day for showers and charging.
A Milanese alternative, but not as good
Unfortunately at a certain point you’ll hit a wall where you can’t get the same quality for a fraction of the price. It makes sense that with a simple metal or silicone band you can pay much less and get similar quality. But for the Milanese bands with their more intricate design, you’ll be able to tell it’s not as good as Apple’s, but maybe only if they’re side by side!
Many reviewers had high praise for this watch band, saying it looks great and comes pretty close to Apple’s offering. The biggest concern I have is that multiple reviewers mentioned that it snagged on their clothing, with some going as far as to say that it “eats” their shirts! So maybe this makes sense as an occasional summer band to wear with a short sleeve or no sleeve shirt.
If you really want a Milanese band to be your everyday band, perhaps consider springing for the $99.99 Apple band.
Statement leather watch band
The jury is out on whether or not this is real leather, and while many reviewers seem to think it is I’m pretty sure that this is fake leather that is very similar to real leather. I mean, it cost 12 dollars! But I love the color options that are available, with the orange/brown above being a highlight to me. Reviewers praise its comfort and looks, which is exactly what you want in a watch band.
That’s it for now. You may be wondering where is the sport loop dupe? While there are many of these available, they didn’t seem to be up to a high enough quality standard so I couldn’t find any that I recommend. Since there are many silicone sport band dupes that are good, you may want to buy your Apple Watch with a sport loop and then buy a sport band dupe if you want one of those too.
I’ll add more as I find more stand-outs. Hopefully, you can find something that will elevate your Apple Watch and your style, and potentially give you a better match with your outfits.