As mechanical marvels, fashion statements and status symbols, there is plenty to love about luxury watches. If you are ready to buy your first luxury watch or update your collection, you know that there are many factors to take into consideration.
To help you make the most informed purchase, we have crafted a comprehensive guide to luxury watches. Keep reading as we detail the different types of luxury watches, best watch complications, top watch brands and much more.
What Are The Different Types Of Luxury Watches?
Whether buying your first luxury watch or updating your collection, there are 4 main different types of luxury watches, each with distinctive designs and features:
Elegant and traditional, dress watches pair perfectly with formal attire thanks to their clean and streamlined designs.
Sports watches are rugged, water-resistant watches are built to withstand countless adventures while maintaining their timekeeping accuracy.
Made as a companion piece for divers, diving watches are sturdy timepieces that can withstand deep sea depths while allowing divers to time their oxygen supply.
Originally made for aviators with large cases and easy-to-read dials, pilot watches often come with chronographs and rotating bezels for precise timing.
What Are The Different Types Of Watch Complications?
A watch complication is any feature that a luxury watch has other than telling the time. There are countless complications to select from, below are some of the most popular choices:
- Chronograph: A stopwatch function that records elapsed time.
- Perpetual Calendar: Displays the day, date and month while accounting for leap years.
- Moon Phase: Depicts the phases of the moon.
- Power Reserve: Indicates the amount of power the watch has reserved before it needs to be wound.
- Minute Repeater: Chimes the time when activated, with different tones for the hours, quarters and minutes.
- World Time Zone: Displays the 24 time zones with a corresponding city, enabling the wearer to tell the time from anywhere in the world.
The Top 10 Luxury Watch Brands
Of the countless luxury watch brands, there are some that stand above the rest for their masterful craftsmanship, complex movements, popularity and style. These are the top ten luxury watch brands:
1. Patek Philippe
The world’s leading watchmaker, Patek Philippe crafts luxury watches imbued with the finest artistry and masterful complications. Patek watches are the pinnacle of any watch collection and the envy of the most dedicated luxury watch fanatics.
A serious status symbol, Rolex is known worldwide for their outstandingly precise and durable watches as well as their rich history of horological innovation. From dynamic sports watches to fine dress watches, there are Rolex watches to suit any style.
3. Audemars Piguet
Unifying traditional watchmaking methods with modern technology and designs, Audemars Piguet watches are remarkable works of art. For lovers of fine watchmaking and dramatic designs, Audemars Piguet watches are a must.
4. Vacheron Constantin
As the world’s oldest watchmaker, Vacheron Constantin honors classic watchmaking tradition with handcrafted designs. Classic timepiece lovers can’t go wrong with any of Vacheron Constantin’s finely crafted and artisanal creations.
This French fashion house has upheld the fine watchmaking tradition with iconic watches such as the Tank Solo, Panthere, and Ballon Bleu. Creating watches that are just as fashionable as they are functional, Cartier timepieces are the go-to of every fashionista.
Creator of one of the world’s most innovative watches, including a case that flips at the wearer’s whim, Jaeger-LeCoultre is a master of design.
For those looking to add innovative watches with traditional artisan techniques to their collection, Jaeger-LeCoultre watches are not to be missed.
7. A. Lange & Sohne
With their unbelievably precise calibers, signature hand-engraved movements and thermally blued screws, A. Lange & Sohne is easily recognizable to lovers of fine watchmaking.
Unifying their watchmaking ambition with sustainable practices, A. Lange & Sohne is perfect for the savvy and eco-conscious watch connoisseur.
8. IWC Schaffhausen
Inventor of the first watches with a digital hours and minute displays, innovation has been at the core of IWC Schaffhausen’s identity. With their wonderfully complex watches and ethically sourced materials, watch lovers needn’t compromise on style and sustainability.
The spirit of adventure is at the very core of Breitling’s brand. Their watches are excellent companions for pilots, deep sea divers, mountaineers and thrill seekers. Wearers can depend on Breitling's durable design and useful complications when on their next adventure.
The watch of choice for NASA’s astronauts, Omega’s timepieces can be depended on even in the deep reaches of space. With an array of sport and dress watches at obtainable prices, Omega has watches to compliment any watch collection.
New Vs. Pre-Owned Luxury Watches
Before buying a luxury watch, you may have wondered if you should shop new or pre-owned?
- New: Brand new watches have the advantage of never having been worn but the downside of a much higher price.
Pre-Owned: Shopping for pre-owned luxury watches is a fantastic way to add to your watch collection for a fraction of the retail price. Not only are pre-owned watches a thrifty option, but they are also an eco-friendly and sustainable purchase.
Buying pre-owned extends the lives of existing watches without contributing to harmful mining practices for precious metals. And finally, luxury watches are built to last. So buying second-hand does not mean compromising on quality or durability.
At myGemma, we have a wide selection of pre-owned and unworn luxury watches at up to 80% off retail. Shop luxury watch brands such as Patek Philippe, Rolex, Omega, IWC, Jaeger-LeCoultre and much more.
With our fantastic discounts, easy monthly payment plans through our partner Affirm and free US shipping, myGemma makes shopping for luxury watches affordable for everyone.