Top 50 Best Different Tattoo Styles Of All Time – Most Popular Types And Kinds
From the earliest days of self-expression, man has inked his flesh with permanent markings:
Tribal symbols and protective totems, military and combat rankings, the names of loved ones, and a number of other sacred images intended to tell the wearer’s moving story, as well as transform the body itself into a work of art.
Our passion for tattoos certainly hasn’t waned; if anything, the trend has become a minted way of life well into the 21st Century. Around the world, men and women continue to honor the ancient art of tattooing, some in ritual tradition, others for the sake of aesthetic pleasure. For many, receiving a tattoo is a rite of passage, and few stop at just one.
It would be impossible to list the sheer plentitude of tattoo options and inspiration, as truly the tattoo’s image is as unique as the individual who selects it. One thing is certain: a tattoo is a lifelong commitment, and what we wear under the skin will no doubt accompany us to the end.
The question therefore remains: what is sacred to you? What emblem speaks of your own struggles and triumphs, as well as your humor and penchant for living life to its fullest? Do you live–and ink–boldly, large and out loud, or conversely prefer the smaller, subtler mysteries that linger seductively on the peripheral?
Clothes may not make the man, but the ink he commits to certain does. And where tattoos are concerned, the only rule is to stay true to the man you are, and are no doubt striving to become. With that said, go ahead and explore these top 50 best different tattoo styles below featuring the most popular types and kinds throughout the course of history.
It’s “in your face” ink. If you want body art that stands out and grabs attention, then this is it. While the skin might be flat/curved, artists today can bring virtually any image you have in mind to life. Three-dimensional tattoos take modern ink styles to an entirely new level. From city skylines to cartoon characters, geometric shapes and beyond, if you want a tattoo to truly “pop”, 3D is the way to go.
Do you lean more to the creative/artistic side? Consider going with an abstract tattoo style. While abstract designs are fun to look at, their best feature can be found with their hidden meaning. Let’s face it, a human portrait with four eyes, geometric cubes, colorful lines and two paint drops, doesn’t exactly send a crystal clear meaning or message. However, it most certainly does to the beholder of the design. If you want a piece of ink that’s truly unique or perhaps a design that has a hidden meaning, abstract tattoo styles make for an excellent choice.
Read it this way or read it that way. Ambigram tattoos feature words with unique lettering designs that allow them to be read the same way from different viewpoints. While this tattoo style used to be extremely popular years ago, today it has more or less died down in favor of more modern styles. Of course, that’s not to say the style hasn’t evolved. In reality, ambigram tattoos have become more ornate and elegant with artists putting their own spin on script and lettering styles.
From muscles to bones to hearts, and beyond, if you love human body parts, anatomical tattoo styles might just be for you. Anatomical tattoos are as realistic to human anatomy as it gets, though you don’t have to be a doctor or dentist to appreciate them. In fact, a lot of people get anatomical tattoos to remember broken bones from athletic injuries, mountain biking, car accidents and beyond. They can hold a whole host of meanings. Even an anatomical pair of lungs can server as a symbol of being a lung cancer survivor.
If you like gears or just the Terminator movie franchise, then you’ll love biomechanical tattoo styles. These often 3D styles feature gears, wires, metal pieces, and much more all connected below the skin’s surface. Perhaps you have always wanted an electronic robot arm or leg but simply couldn’t afford one. Here’s your chance to get one.
6. Black And Grey
For when you want your artwork to do all the speaking, black and grey tattoo styles are a fine choice. Heavily shaded body art while not colorful, can still make a significant impression. Just take note of the design above, even without a single drop of color, this piece is absolutely jaw-dropping to look at.
7. Blackwork / Blackout
Traditional tribal tattoos aren’t your style? Then consider post-modern patterns found in blackwork and blackout designs. While it is one form of tattoo style, it blackwork tattoos combine elements from other styles including geometric, line, negative space, dotwork, and beyond. In reality, a blackwork tattoo can be as unique as you want to make it. Even traditional tribal ink can be enhanced by surrounding it with solid black ink for a more bolder and modern look.
8. Blast Over
Have a fading colorful tattoo? Throw a bird, skull or any other design you want over it in black ink and you’ve just discovered the blast over style. Let’s face it, tattoos are forever but your perception of the world is always changing. If you’ve got a wonky piece of ink from the past but want to hold onto it due to a significant meaning, a blast over tattoo is the perfect solution. Sure, the old design won’t be one-hundred percent visible but it will still poke on through. While technically a cover-up tattoo style, the true invention of blast over ink comes from those who have too much body art but simply want ink. When sace is short, blast over tattoos are a great way to add another layer of artwork over an already full canvas of skin.
9. Broken Glass
While not super popular outside of the gangster and pocket watch realm, the broken glass trend is catching on. This type of 3D effect can be placed over virtually any design you want, adding more visual interest to your body art.
10. Paint Brush Stroke
The paintbrush stroke tattoo style offers a serious level of uniqueness. Unlike a traditional tattoo, this style can be nearly impossible to replicate thanks to its different variations in watercolor and gradient design. Most commonly, you’ll find the paintbrush stroke style being used for things like the Enso symbol or OM symbol. More modern artists are pushing the limits of this style by doing more than just symbols and instead opting for designs like rose flowers, sailing ships and beyond.
Cool knots and complex curves are what you’ll find when it comes to Celtic tattoo styles. While you can’t travel back to the Iron Age to tour badges of honor found on warriors from Celtic tribal societies, you can, however, do something else. For inspiration just seek out The Irish Book of Kells and you’ll find plenty of interwoven and interlocking knotwork. In terms of popularity, the Celtic cross is by far one of the most popular designs, while bears, dragons, owls, and wolves are commonly used as well.
Perhaps one of my favorite types of tattoo styles, Chicano body art is truly breathtaking. If you’ve ever seen this style applied to designs with statues of Greek gods then you’ll know just how captivating it is to look at. Known for their cornucopia of Hispanic themes, Chicano tattoos feature everything from the Day of the Dead sugar skulls to The Blessed Virgin Mary, Jesus Christ and beyond. Of course, you’ll also find everything from guns and gangsters to money roses and clocks, all themed with the iconic Chicano style in today’s day and age.
Dotwork tattoos beg for closer inspection, which is where the artistry shines! From simple to complex, dotwork showcases one level of talent from afar, and another up close. Images, cuffs, or sleeves look great at first glance, but on closer inspection, reveal surprising details. Each is created solely with a multitude of dots, rather than full lines or fill.
Based on the most basic of shapes, geometric tattoos are anything but! Squares, circles, triangles, and polygons come together in abstract images, mandalas, or low-poly models. There is no limit to the possibilities. These designs are ideal for those who want to show a love of beauty while recognizing the set rules of nature which surround us.
Glitch tattoos remind us to question our reality. Like an old VHS tape with tracking issues, glitch tattoos are flawed or glitched in some way. Zig-zagging or offset lines obscure parts of the image and suggest that, despite our outward appearances, we are all flawed in our own ways.
16.Glow In The Dark / UV Ink
Take your tattoo to new levels with glow in the dark ink. Ultraviolet (UV) ink absorbs light during the day and glows when darkness falls. Use it to highlight your existing ink or to add artwork that is only visible at night. A reminder that all is not what it seems, and that our daytime self often changes when the lights go out.
A gentle flow from one color to the next, gradient tattoos do away with hard lines in favor of a natural flow. Light to dark, blue to red, day to night; where does one end and the other begin? Rarely is the answer simple. Adding a gradient to your tattoo as the background, or as the primary color scheme, adds a degree of softness not easily achieved with solid borders.
Lover of graffiti art? Showcase your own tags with a graffiti tattoo. Use your body as a graffiti artist would use a wall and express yourself without the fear of your work being painted over. From personal tags to full murals, you’re only limited by your imagination, and not by how much spray paint you can carry.
19. Hyper Realistic
Is that a tattoo, or is it a photo? With hyper realistic tattoos, it can be difficult to tell. This style requires an expertly skilled artist and a lot of time, but the results are breathtaking. Often leaving us questioning our perceptions, a hyper realistic tattoo has the depth, shading, and flow of reality. Expect lots of looks, and some touching, with this style.
Flip from the positive to the negative with an inverted tattoo. Taking the traditional black on a white tattoo, and changing it up to white on black, an inverted design is the reverse of the standard image. Reminiscent of a film negative, with an image of whites, grays, and blues on a black background, you have this style of tattoo.
Japanese culture has permeated art throughout the world. Showcase your appreciation with your tattoo. Creatures from legend, lotus flowers, and Japanese lettering come together to create the ultimate tribute to Eastern culture. These images are perfect for everything from small, one-off designs to sleeves, and full body tattoos.
Get your message across with a tattoo showcasing custom lettering. Use a favorite font, or create your own! Combine your lettered design with any other style to create a tattoo that is uniquely yours. Block, script, or gothic, if it can be written, it can be transferred to your skin.
Get back to basics with a simple line tattoo. Sometimes simple is better. A line drawing is made using a simple line. While shading or coloring can be added for effect, the premise remains the same. Sometimes the simple messages are the most important, and elaborate is not always “better”.
24. Mambo / Destrutturato
While not as well-known as other styles out there, the “Mambo” as I like to call it or “Destrutturato”, is an entirely new style that’s gaining in popularity. The simple black ink design features colorful backgrounds that resemble the bright and flat colors often found in Japanese tattoos. It’s different, unique and comes straight out of Milano, Italy thanks to a gentleman named Mattia Mambo.
A mandala is a product of patience, love, and mindfullness, and can remind us of those qualities when carried with us. Starting in the center and working your way out, round by round, pattern by pattern, Mandalas have been created for centuries as a form of meditation as well as art. Generally round is shape, these are well suited for forearm, chest, or back tattoos.
The Mayans existed for nearly 3500 years, now their artwork lives on. The Mayans were known for their art, which features intricate designs honoring their myths and culture. A lot can be learned by studying the Mayans and a tattoo honoring them is a great way to spiritually connect with this strong, ancient civilization.
Simple. Short and sweet. Understated. A minimalist tattoo is all of these. Minimalist tattoos forego the elaborate designs of other styles in exchange for a simple word or small image. Often symbolic to the wearer, the meaning is not always clear to onlookers. This is a great way to express yourself without drawing too much attention.
28. Negative Space
Easy to confuse with an inverted tattoo, a negative space piece draws your attention to what is not there. Instead of drawing a tree, a negative tattoo artist will draw the space between the branches and let the tree come together from there. This is a subtle technique, but can have a powerful affect on the finished piece.
Classic American themes are the focus of neo traditional tattoos. Native American images, art deco, and cartoons are common themes in this style, often accented by thick, strong borders and bright, lively colors. This is great way to honor the imagery of times past while adding a modern touch.
30. New School
Take old-school images and mash them up with graffiti stylization, and you are left with new school tattoo work. The finished product of this technique is similar to the neo-traditional style, with bright, colorful images and heavy, black borders, but there are subtle differences. Image content tends to have a more modern flair with an older feel to it.
Big. Bold. Strong. These describe not only Vikings but also Norse themed tattoos. The Vikings were tough. Nobody is going to argue with that. Norse tattoos are based on ancient Viking designs and provide a sense of strength, power, and control. Intricate designs are frequently presented in full sleeves or torso tattoos, serving as a testament to the artist’s devotion to the craft.
32. American Traditional
Classic images from America’s past are at the forefront in American traditional tattoos. From the tales of crossing the sea to reach America, to stories of gunslingers from the Wild West, American traditional tattoos feature images inspired by American history. Often accentuated with modern features, these tattoos show a reverence for the past while staying rooted in the present.
33. Optical Illusion
People will have to look twice at an optical illusion tattoo to fully appreciate it’s complexity. Tattoo artists can create illusions so realistic that one might think there actually IS a hole in your hand. Is your arm really carved out of wood? These tattoos make people stop and think about what they are seeing.
Simple and understated, an outline tattoo is a great entry into body art. Having an outline of your tattoo image is the perfect way to see how it looks before committing to hours of filling and coloring. Don’t let the simplicity fool you, though. A simple outline can make just as strong a statement as a full color image.
Pinstripe tattoos contain incredible detail but are not overwhelming. Think line drawing meets Spirograph, and you have the basic idea behind a pinstripe tattoo. These tattoos feature amazingly intricate designs, all created with simple, thin lines. Variations in color, thickness, and angle all come together for a limitless amount of design possibilities.
While video game graphics continue to improve, love for the 8-bit images of the past grows. Pixel art tattoos remind us of our first adventures in video gaming. They are also reminiscent of cross-stitch patterns and perler bead designs. Whether it is a classic Mario image, or a newer character given a pixel treatment, these tattoos make us nostalgic for the simpler times.
Pointillism tattoos take dotwork art to the next level of detail. While dotwork tattoos take a great deal of skill to create, pointillism pieces take much more. Areas of highly dense points give the appearance of solid blocks of color and allow for unmatched levels of shading and blending. Generally done in all black, color can be added for a different effect.
38. Pop Art
Made famous by Andy Warhol, pop art can be used to create striking tattoos as well. While fine art encompasses the more traditional art seen in museams, pop art features subject from pop culture. Pop art tattoos frequently feature comic book images or musical icons, but any subject matter that is derived from popular culture is a good choice.
Memorialize your loved ones or your idols with a portrait tattoo! Frequently done in a hyper realistic style, a portrait tattoo is the perfect way to pay tribute to someone. Whether it is a pop icon, historical hero, or a passed love one, keep them with you with a tattoo of their portrait.
40. Quote / Word
Always have your inspiration with you with a quote tattoo. Do you have a favorite phrase, or a power word? Keep it with you all the time as a tattoo. Quotes work best as a simple font, while single words look great when embellished upon. Many quote tattoos can be found on the forearm, upper chest, or lower back.
If a full colored portrait or image is too much for you, consider a silhouette tattoo. The beauty in this style is in the simplicity. While color can be added for some striking results, most silhouette tattoos are done in all black. These work well on any part of the body, and can range from a small icon to full torso coverage.
Take a piece of an artist’s sketchbook with you in the form of a sketch tattoo. While an image with full color and details is stunning, a sketch tattoo has a charm that is hard to match. A work in progress, an idea, a quick render; these are thoughts that come to mind when we see a sketch. Room to grow, but beautiful as it is.
43. Stained Glass
Let your light shine with a stained glass tattoo. Heavy black borders represent the ironwork, filled in with vibrant colors to create the illusion of an illuminated stained glass window. Use a tradition design, or take any image and have your tattoo artists turn it into a stained glass window.
Surrealism tattoos show us a world where something is not quite right. Or, perhaps, it is… Artists like Dali have made surrealist art famous, and tattos artists can build on this by taking a common scene and working a bit of the bizarre into it. Is that face melting? Why is there an eye in his mouth? These are questions that a surrealism tattoo may make us ask.
45.Torn / Ripped Skin
A specific type of optical illusion, a torn skin tattoo features flesh ripping away to reveal what is underneath. This technique takes time to achieve, but leaves a remarkable finished image. What do you have lurking under your skin? Bones, gears, pistons? For best effect, these tattoos are done on larger areas, such as the chest or upper arms.
46. Trash Polka
Combining realism and trash, trash polka tattoos offer a unique, bold style choice. Originated in Germany, trash polka takes traditional art and collages it with “trash” or smudges, smears, and words, to create a one of a kind style. True trash polka is done in all black and red, although variations can be made to change the final effect.
47. Tribal / Polynesian / Maori / Hawaiian
One of the more popular styles, tribal tattoos pay homage to our ancestors. A tribal tattoo features bold designs, based on the artwork of tribal civilizations. Many cultures can be represented, but frequently designs are based on Maori, Indonesian, or Hawaiian motifs. These tattoos look great in any location, from a small cuff to a full body cover.
Watercolor art has a distinct softness to it that other mediums struggle to replicate. Watercolor tattoos offer the same feeling. Carefull blending of colors and use of varying intensities leads to a tattoo that looks like it was painted right on to your skin. This technique works especially well as a background for more a more solid, well defined image, but easily stands on it’s own.
49. White Ink
For a very subtle effect, a white ink tattoo may be what you’re looking for. Depending on the natural color of your skin, white ink can be almost invisible. You know it’s there, and it can be seen if it’s being looked for, but often it goes undetected. It can also be combined with inks of other colors for some truly amazing results.
50. Wood Carving
A specific type of illusion, a woodcarving tattoo looks as if your body is made of solid wood, into which a design has been carved. This look is achieved through careful use of shading and highlighting. Take the time to find the right artists, and this can look very relistic. This technique works especially well on the arms and legs.
10 Best Watches For Men Reviewed – 2021 Edition
For those living under a rock, everyone knows that the modern man doesn’t really wear a watch solely to know the time. Instead, it is more about a statement of your class and style. You also probably already know that the good quality watches for men can be found within a variety of price points, so there’s always something for you regardless of your budget.
Gents, since we all know these things, there’s really no point dancing around a preamble. Let’s just cut to the chase and see some of the best watches for men available on the market.
Best Watches for Men
1. Rado Centrix Jubile Black Dial
Simple but classy; that’s the easiest way to describe this Rado Centrix Jubile Black Dial watch. With only the quarter hour positions marked by diamonds and silver-tone hands, the watch presents a not-too-noisy and straightforward design. Apart from the small brand name, hour, minute, and seconds hand, the only other thing on the face is the calendar – talk about a neat watch!
Rado Centrix is an analog quartz watch, meaning its ticking movement is powered by a battery. This might not be your type of watch if you prefer an automatic or mechanical watch. But its no-frills design coupled with its tough scratch-resistant sapphire crystal gives it a certain easy appeal, making it one of the best watches for men who are looking to stand out with something uncomplicated yet trendy.
Rado has automatic watches, though, if that’s your preference. However, they cost a few hundred dollars more than the quartz model.
With only 30 meters of water-resistant rating, the Rado Centrix watch is splash-proof. But a splash-proof watch is not exactly what you’ll wear to the pool.
Getting caught up in occasional rain while wearing your Rado Centrix isn’t going to be a problem; neither will splashes of water have any effect on the watch. But you don’t want to submerge this watch in water. Your investment is better off contacting the smallest amount of water possible.
2. Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch
This next option is for men with deep pockets. If you intend to splash some serious cash on a timepiece, you might as well take a look at the Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch. It’s not called the “moon watch” for nothing. It has actually been to the moon and back! The Omega Speedmaster is one of the few manual-winding chronograph movement watches that are worn on NASA missions.
The analog watch features a tough sapphire crystal dial window and comes complete with a presentation box that includes a Velcro strap, NATO strap, and strap changing tools.
With a 50-meter water resistance depth, you shouldn’t think of diving with this expensive watch on unless you plan to damage your prized possession!
While you can swim with it, it is best to avoid too much exposure to water and probably take it off. Like other chronograph watches, this one also features a stopwatch function that can be very useful when you need to use a timer. The bottom button at the side of the watch controls the function and can be used to start and stop timing.
Omega watches are not only made famous by NASA astronauts, movie characters like James Bond have also contributed to promoting the brand. If you prefer the version worn by James Bond (after he ditched Rolex in 1995), consider the more popular Omega Seamaster series. This particular Seamaster Planet Ocean is an automatic watch, so you will have to wear it almost daily or move it around for a bit every day. Needless to say, you’ll have to pay top dollar for it.
3. Gucci G -Timeless
Okay, Gucci is renowned as a first-rate fashion label, so it might come as a surprise to see the brand listed among watchmakers. First, buying a watch from a well-established fashion brand means you are paying extra for the designer label. And secondly, you might not get certain features found in other watches within the same price range.
However, Gucci is not just an authority in the clothing world. The company has gone ahead to also make a name for itself in the watch market and is even a leading brand in watchmaking. And the icing on the cake? Gucci watches are made in, you guessed it, Switzerland – giving the watchmaking section of the brand more class.
Most Gucci watch designs are strikingly unconventional as far as traditional watchmaking goes. The result? Gucci produces some of the best watches for men who prefer donning chic styles instead of the more common traditional designs.
So, if you are looking to stand out from the crowd, consider a Gucci watch. This G-Timeless model is from the Timeless collection. It comes with a mineral crystal face and quartz movement. Although it is a water-resistant watch, it is best suited for swimming in shallow waters.
The watch is battery operated. That means you might need to replace it, depending on how long it has stayed on the shelf. An automatic movement would have been desirable, but Gucci watches with that feature costs almost as twice as this one.
4. TAG Heuer Formula 1 Caliber 5 Automatic Watch
This might not be the most expensive watch on this list, but it certainly is really tricky knowing exactly where to begin to describe this TAG Heuer Watch.
TAG Heuer is a leading name in watchmaking. First, it is a Swiss brand. Secondly, the company has continued to win multiple prestigious awards. And thirdly, you don’t have to lose an arm and a leg to own one of their watches, although they don’t come cheap. Is there any wonder why one of their timepieces is included in the list of best watches for men?
This automatic TAG Heuer watch comes with a tough sapphire crystal glass that won’t scratch easily. The glass face houses a striking grey dial that is difficult to miss even in the dark, thanks to the rhodium-plated indexes coated in white Superluminova and the sleek steel hands. And just in case you didn’t catch that, it simply means the hands and markers glow in the dark.
The watch is powered by Caliber 5 mechanical movement with a backup power that can last up to 38 hours. It also comes with a fast date correction feature. As far as water resistance goes, you don’t have to take it off if you want to go for water skiing or any other serious surface water sports. In fact, it is safe for professional marine activities, too. But with only 200 meters water-resistant rating, you definitely shouldn’t be using this watch for scuba diving.
Seems like the Formula 1 collection is a combination of high-quality and bells and whistles, right? Well, it might be difficult to find fault with a watch that is designed with incredible Swiss-made technology. But here’s something to keep in mind, though; 43 mm isn’t exactly small, so the watch might look awkward on you if you have a small hand. You don’t want people thinking you got an oversized birthday present!
But that’s not something to split hairs too much about because you can opt for the 41 mm stainless steel version if you’re bent on owning a watch from the Formula 1 collection of TAG Heuer. It is also an automatic watch, so there’s no need for a battery.
5. Tissot Le Locle Powermatic 80 Automatic Watch
The Tissot Le Locle Powermatic 80 Automatic Watch is proof that you can get the best watches for men even if you’re not a CEO just yet. A high-quality Swiss watch, an automatic watch, and a synthetic sapphire glass are all wrapped into this very affordable timepiece! Quality and affordability don’t get any better than this Tissot Le Locle watch.
This watch is made from stainless steel and has a silver metal bracelet. The watch has a black dial and comes with a date function. You won’t be changing batteries since it is an automatic watch, but you’ll need to wear it or move it daily. It is a water-resistant watch with a 30-meter rating. Apart from the occasional splash of water from the sink, it is best to avoid getting this watch wet.
6. Bell & Ross BR 03-92 NIGHTLUM
The Bell & Ross BR 03-92 NIGHTLUM watch is the first watch on this list with a leather strap. Pay no attention to the “bell” in the name; there’s no bell and whistles with this watch, just a straightforward square watch with the traditional hours, minutes, and seconds hands with a date feature.
This watch has its origin in aviation and is perfect for gents who prefer simplicity and a square-shaped watch. But just because it is a simple watch doesn’t mean it is made from low-quality materials. This watch features a hard-wearing leather strap that is as tough as they come. The face is a rugged scratch-resistant sapphire crystal, and the watch comes with a screwed-down crown.
All the hands are luminous, so you don’t have to squint to see what time is it, even in the dark. It is a water-resistant watch rated at 100 meters. So, it is perfect for swimming and some other water sports. However, I wouldn’t take it for diving. And the best part? It has an automatic movement. So, while this watch might not have the usual extra attractive trimmings, it sure packs quite a bit of functionality.
7. Frederique Constant Horological Smartwatch
Here’s another leather strap watch that qualifies to be on this list of best watches for men. Why? You’ll know just in a bit. But first, let’s start with the one thing that is less appealing about the watch. The Horological Smartwatch from Frederique Constant is a Swiss quartz watch, meaning it is powered by a battery. Most watch nerds would prefer an automatic or mechanical watch, but this quartz watch comes with a battery that can last for more than 2years, so you won’t be changing the battery anytime soon.
Okay, now that we’ve gone past that hitch, let’s see what makes this watch outstanding. This elegant-looking timepiece is not called a smartwatch for nothing. It combines a lot of useful functions that hardly reflect on the price tag. This is the perfect watch if you are interested in getting a timepiece that will help you stay on track with your fitness goals.
The Smartwatch can track your athletic activities, including the number of daily steps, the total distance covered, and the total calories burned. You can even set the alarm to remind you to move if you haven’t done so for a certain period. And you can wear it to sleep or place it under your pillow to monitor and record your sleep. What are the details it records during sleep? It monitors how much time you spent in light sleep, deep sleep, and how much time you spent awake.
Okay, enough about activity tracking. Let’s get to the real reason this watch is called a smartwatch. It is built to automatically pick up the current time from your Smartphone, so you don’t ever need to set the time and date, even when you travel across time zones. Plus, all your data can be backed up to the cloud, making it easy to restore it in case you ever lose your phone or watch.
It comes with a locked crown, a push button, and a scratch-resistant domed sapphire crystal face. It has a water-resistant rating of 50 meters, making it safe to use even when you sweat profusely or wash your hand in the sink. Just don’t go swimming with this watch as you might lose your investment.
8. Breitling Navitimer GMT
Did I say the Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch was for those with deep pockets? Well, you might need to dig really deep into those pockets if you want to buy a Breitling Navitimer GMT. This is the most expensive watch on this list, but its price is not just what makes it one of the best watches for men; it’s its superior and outstanding quality. In fact, you can use the words “quality” and “Breitling” interchangeably as far as watches go (that’s my opinion, anyway!)
Usually, I should save the best for last, but as you’ll have noticed, I didn’t follow any particular order in listing these watches. The Breitling Navitimer GMT watch is an amazing timepiece, whether it appears at the top, bottom, or anywhere on any list.
There’s hardly anything a quality luxury watch should have that is lacking in this powerful timepiece. But that’s not surprising considering it is Swiss made. It has an automatic movement, rugged anti-scratch sapphire crystal glass, chronograph, and a bidirectional bezel function.
You simply can’t go wrong with this watch. It is an excellent investment for those who can afford it. And to set your mind at ease, the product comes with a solid 6-year warranty.
The last two watches on this list are great choices if you’re thinking budget. But just because you are living on a shoestring doesn’t mean you can’t find good quality watches. In fact, you can find some of the best watches for men under $500 here.
9. Citizen Eco-Drive Chronograph Watch
Need an affordable hybrid timepiece dubbed “the most accurate watch in the world?” A smart choice would be the Eco-Drive Chronograph from Citizen.
It’s rare to find a quartz watch that combines super accuracy with not needing a battery. Heck, even high-end chronograph watches tend to go out of sync with time.
This Eco-Drive chronometer timepiece is powered by light – just about any light! The watch face has a small solar panel that traps light, so there’s absolutely no need for a battery, ever! The watch also has an “Atomic Timekeeping” feature, making sure it never goes out of sync.
The Citizen Eco-Drive Chronograph Watch is made in Japan. And just before you raise an eyebrow because it’s not from the watchmaking capital of the world – Switzerland – rest assured that Japan also manufactures some of the best watches for men and women alike.
The watch has a superb quality build; it doesn’t scratch easily because it has a very tough protective sapphire crystal on the glass window lens (that’s the transparent part of the watch’s face). And with up to 200-meter water resistance rating, swimming and diving with the watch should be safe.
Here’s a clever and interesting feature. The watch saves energy by not moving all the hands when it is covered in a dark place for a while (under your sleeve, in a drawer, etc.) As soon as you bring it to light, you can visibly see how the seconds hand zoom by to catch up with the current time.
This might not be the best watch for you if you are looking for something with less “noise” on the face. Some people might find the face a bit too crowded. If you want a watch sleek design and a less cramped face, perhaps an unconventional watch like those from Gucci might suit you.
It might not be the most expensive quartz in the world, but it certainly is a great watch for its price. With a rating of 4.4 out of 5 from 605 customer reviews on Amazon and a solid 5-year manufacturer warranty, this is not a bad quartz watch at all.
10. Seiko Automatic Watch
This analog Seiko Automatic Watch is the least expensive on this list, but that doesn’t make it any less valuable. In fact, it is style pretty much like a Rolex Submariner, one of the best watches for men when it comes to taking a deep dive.
Like the previous Citizen watch, this one too is manufactured in Japan. Seiko is not new to the watchmaking business and has established itself as a company that produces high-quality and accurate timepieces.
This particular watch is built with a crystal made from mineral. While that is good, it is not quite as durable and robust as sapphire, but hey, if it’s built as high-quality as other luxury watches, it won’t be very affordable, right?
The auto watch is water-resistant for up to 100 meters. Meaning, it is great for swimming in a pool, but it might not be okay for diving. You definitely don’t want to be wearing this for your underwater exploration during the weekend.
Anyways, you don’t have to hate deep-diving to own this watch. There are other alternatives if diving is top on your weekend to-do list. The Seiko auto watch is simply not designed for such activities. And by the way, why is it called an automatic watch? Because it works by your movement. Instead of relying on batteries, it only works when you use it. This is perhaps one of the few cheap watches with such a feature.
While an automatic movement is generally a plus, it could also be a problem if you don’t use the watch for a couple of days. You may not lose your investment because you didn’t wear your Seiko 5 model for an entire day, but you may need to restart the watch manually. To do that, you need to turn the crown on the side of the watch a couple of times – about 10 to 15 times clockwise.
In Seiko’s defense, though, this is not peculiar to this watch. All automatic watches are designed that way. So if you can get past the fact that you might need to use this watch almost daily, then it could be the perfect watch for you.
What Makes a Quality Watch?
Big names are good; in fact, they are great. But watches are not just about Omega, Rolex, and TAG. Great watches are not found in Switzerland only. So, what exactly makes a watch great? Here are some important criteria to note.
Watch movement refers to the mechanism a watch uses to work. There are three types of watch movements, namely, quartz, mechanical, and automatic movements.
A watch with a quartz movement often uses a battery and is generally cheaper than a watch with mechanical or automatic movement. Mechanical watches require periodic winding to keep them functional. And automatic watches need to be worn or moved daily.
With quartz watches, you get ticking motion of the seconds-hand while mechanical and automatic watches have a sweeping or smooth seconds-hand motion. You can find good-quality watches with quartz movement, but in most cases, luxury watches have mechanical or automatic movements.
Watch Case Material
It doesn’t matter the mechanism of a watch – whether it ticks or sweeps – if the material used in building the case is poor, no one would be attracted to it in the first place. So, first things first, a watch case should provide aesthetics. But beyond that, it has to be durable to offer any form of protection. Good quality watches should have cases made from titanium, ceramic, or at least stainless steel.
The Glass on the Face
The glass on watch faces are called crystals and are made from different materials. Protecting the watch from dirt, water, and other potentially destructive materials might seem like an easy thing to do, but it is not. For this reason, the best watches for men need to have crystals made from tough and durable materials.
The three major materials are sapphire, acrylic, and mineral. Sapphire crystals are second only to diamonds in toughness, making them a more scratch-resistant and expensive. Acrylic faces or crystals are mostly found on cheaper watches. Personally, I don’t recommend buying any watch with this type of crystal because it scratches easily. Besides, it is mostly found in children’s watches.
Mineral crystals are simply glasses treated with chemicals or heat to improve their shatter and scratch resistance. They are not as durable as sapphire but are great choices if you are on a budget.
The weight of a metal strap will tell you whether it is made from solid material or not. Stainless steel, platinum, and gold are some of the best options for metal watch straps. A low-quality watch will have hollow stainless steel in its straps.
You can also find good quality watches with leather straps. The straps are made from durable leather. For example, this expensive Hublot Rose Gold watch comes with a leather strap.
Whether you choose a metal or leather strap watch is a matter of personal preference. One is not better than the other. Although, some people tend to think that metal strap watches should be worn at work during the day, while leather strap watches should be for more casual outings in the evenings or nights. Of course, that’s just an opinion. You can choose to do whatever suits you best.
What? Yeah, you read that right.
Complications don’t sound like a good thing but trust me; it is all good as far as quality watches go. Complications refer to a watch’s extra features besides telling the time.
A good-quality watch should have at least a date feature, you know, just to keep you up to date. Other useful features include a chronograph (stopwatch for timing yourself), a backlight, and many others.
Keep in mind, though, plenty of complications don’t exactly mean a watch is first-rate. There are many luxury and quality watches with minimal complications.
Which country makes the best watches for men? Or which country makes the best watches of any kind for that matter? The answer to this is highly subjective. However, there seems to be a consensus about three watchmaking countries. These are Switzerland, Japan, and Germany, with Switzerland being the undisputed champions.
Brands such as Omega, Tissot, Rolex, Tag, Breitling, and other luxury brands are made in Switzerland. But you can’t ignore other Japanese watchmaking giants such as Seiko and Citizen. These brands also compete favorably with many Swiss watches. German brands such as the A. Lange & Sohne is not left out too. In fact, they produce some of the most expensive and high-quality watches available.
Water Resistance Rating
Lastly, a quality watch should have a fair water resistance rating or a high rating if it is a diving watch. But here’s the thing, water-resistance ratings are usually confusing, especially if you take them literally. For example, it is easy to assume that a 50-meter water-resistance rating means you can dive down to 50 meters, but that is totally incorrect.
Horologists (that’s a fancy word for watch experts) recommend swimming with a watch only if it has a minimum water-resistance rating of 100 meters. A rating of 200 meters and upward is okay for diving. However, keep in mind that the water-resistance of a watch degrades over time, so you want to keep older watches out of the water as much as possible.
So, the best watches for men all have high water resistance ratings, right? Wrong! Many high-quality watches are not designed for diving, so they don’t need such high ratings.
There are a plethora of cheap watches with good water-resistance ratings. It depends on what the watch is designed to do. If you want a luxury watch that is built for deep diving, then you should keep an eye on the water-resistance ratings; otherwise, high a rating is not necessarily a sign of a quality watch.
The best watches for men do not necessarily need to have all the criteria listed above. You will notice that some of the watches in our review do not have a few of these features, too, but that doesn’t make them less valuable. It all comes down to what you are looking for in a watch.
Do not let a lean budget stop you from getting a quality timepiece. If you take a few moments to look through this list, you will find good quality watches that don’t cost much. And if you have a few extra bucks to throw around, there are also superb luxury watches to choose from, too.