ADVICE: Our Guide To Buying Your First Luxury Watch

by Matt Clymo

Buying a luxury watch can be daunting. With so many options out there across all price points and styles, the decision isn’t easy. But this is where we come in!

So, you’ve decided to buy your first luxury watch, or should we call it a timepiece? Congratulations! Now the fun begins with what to choose. As with most things in life, humans are not great at deciding on what they want, and sometimes what they need. This is even more so when it comes to an area filled with literally hundreds of choices.

Choosing what to pick is tough these days…

Whilst we always want some choice, too much is a bad thing as the human mind isn’t designed to sift through all that information to choose just one thing. Thanks to hundreds of thousands of years of evolution we like just a handful so we can make a quick decision. Ah, the the Paradox Of Choice!

We’ve pulled together this guide to help you on your way in your watch journey so hopefully, this helps make this decision all that much easier and perhaps narrow down what you’re looking for. Or at least, point you in the right direction.


Budget is probably the biggest guiding factor there is. With literally thousands of choices out there in the watch world, budget is your first point when starting out as it will help narrow down what you’re able to buy by way of putting an upper and lower limit on it. Notice we said lower as well? Having a limit of $20,000 is great, but there is a massive amount of pieces under that limit, so narrowing it down to say, $15k-$20k now gives you a $5,000 window to play in.

From a $4,100 TAG Heuer to the $20,000 Breitling Datora and more, there is something for all price points.

This really goes for any price point to be honest. Have $5,000 as your upper limit? Then try and look at watches between $3k – $5k. This will make it much easier! And if your budget is under $5,000 AUD, then we’ve some ideas here for you to start off! And if you have $20,000 to play with, then we actually have some of the best chronograph pieces under the $20,000 mark in our article here.

Style & Lifestyle

Now that you’ve worked out your budget, you need to think about the style of watch you want. Your lifestyle will play a big part in this as well as what you’re wanting the watch for. If you have a fairly active lifestyle and you don’t wear suits every day, then chances are you will want to go down the more sportier route. Maybe a steel sports watch on a steel bracelet or rubber strap.

The Raymond Weil Freelancer Flyback Chrono is always good for a more casual dressed-down look.

However, if you work in an office every day, or are in a job where you dress more formally, then something less sporty and more dressy will be better. Think about something in a smaller size and on a leather strap. However, there are plenty of watches now that bridge the gap between sports and dress – call them an all-around watch, or GADA (Go Anywhere, Do Anything) watch. If you’re not familiar with this term, then check out our article here that explores the GADA watch and some great examples of it.


This factor kind of links with the above. Who you are, your lifestyle and your dress can impact your watch choice, but so does the occasion for wearing it. Some people want a watch they can wear every day with anything (The above GADA Watch). Some people want a nice watch they can wear each day to the office, and some are pretty happy with their Apple watch for a daily, and want a nice piece they bring out for special occasions, like date nights, formal events, business dinners, etc.

The IWC Portofino is a dressier watch but is versatile depending on how you wear it.

Thinking about your reason and the occasions you will be wearing your watch will have an impact on what you choose, not to mention factoring in the above lifestyle you live and the dress style you have. As we always say, there is a watch for everyone and for each occasion. Whilst Father’s Day has been and gone, our Top 25 Gift Ideas for Father’s Day actually has a range of great watches to suit a range of styles, lifestyles, and occasions. Maybe add one to the list for next year!


So you’ve got your budget or price range sorted. Check. You’ve thought about what style of watch will fit into your lifestyle. Check. And you’ve worked out if it will be used for special occasions, work days, or weekends. Check. This means you’ll have a decent idea of the type of watch you’re going for. Great! But now the brand comes into play and doing your research really helps.

For many people, watches are not just something to wear to tell time. They represent something about who we are, and who we want to be, and are there constantly when doing important and memorable things throughout life. (Check out our article here on why we love watches so much) So knowing the brand’s story, why they make the watches they do, and how this translates to you is just as important as the piece itself.

Tudor is one brand that makes watches designed for a purpose, and with their Born To Dare philosophy, have the adventurous spirit built into their DNA

Some brands are about the adventurous spirit with pieces designed for that. Some are about elegance and timelessness, with watches that showcase this and some are about breaking the conventions and not conforming to anyone’s standards and so are their watches. Understanding this will really help you find the watch and connect with it on a much deeper level, and love it for longer!

Try Them On

Now the fun begins. We’re a big believer that watches need to be tried on and tested to really appreciate them and see how they fit on your wrist, what they look like with your clothes, and just in general. By doing so you’ll quickly get a feel for the piece and how you connect with it as sometimes the paper specs don’t really give you the full story.

Getting a photo of your desired watch is so important!

Whilst it’s hard to try it on for a long period of time in the store, you’ll get a decent feel for it. These days, most watch dealers and boutiques will let you take your time and try it on, walk around the store, take photos, and help you decide. And this brings us to an important aspect of trying the watch on – take photos! Take a couple on your wrist from different angles and see if the salesperson can then take a couple but from a slight distance so you get a third-person perspective. This way you’ll be able to see how it looks on the wrist from your point of view as well as others.

Take Your Time

Now whilst it should go without saying, you should take your time. Don’t rush to make a decision right away. We’ve seen many times when people rush to get a watch for any number of reasons from trying to scratch an itch for a particular model or style of watch, to trying to get on the latest hype train, only to realise a short time later that it’s not the watch for them and just like Walter Donovan in Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade, ended up choosing poorly.

Searching online for wrist shots can be a deep rabbit hole!

Part of the fun of buying a nice luxury watch is the journey of deciding. It’s the research online, spending countless hours scrolling through Instagram to see how certain pieces look on other people’s wrists, reading all the hands-on reviews we have in our reviews section, and talking to others in the watch community or friends about their experiences with certain pieces. If you do all the research, and tick all the boxes in the above categories, you will end up with a piece that you’ll love and hopefully cherish for a long while.

Good luck in the journey, and if you’ve found this helpful and bought something you’d love to share, leave us a comment below or head to our Instagram page and leave us a comment there!

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