Finally, the answer is here!
Montredo’s editorial team is on a mission to find out which watch to wear on a date. To this end, we surveyed 100 women, aged 20 - 39, for their opinions on watches that they would like to see on a man’s wrist. To make our results as representative as possible, we have included a wide range of watches from the all-time classics, like the Omega Speedmaster Professional and the TAG Heuer Monaco, to a more subtle dress watch variety, such as the NOMOS Tangente and the Junghans Max Bill. What we have discovered may surprise you and sometimes even an iconic watch just doesn’t impress the ladies that much.
So which models top this list? Do sports watches fare better or are understated dress watches preferred? We present our results from those that are rated most favourable to the one that are less appealing. Not that we are saying this is a definitive guide, but perhaps our findings could save you some time before you go on your next date.
The Overall Winner: Minimalist Design, Made in Germany
1. NOMOS Tangente
The big winner of this poll is the NOMOS Tangente. NOMOS champions the Bauhaus aesthetics, which stipulates form follows function. With a case height of only 7.2mm, the Tangente is a slender watch that will sit comfortably on your wrist. Its design also accentuates this particular quality of the watch – the slightly angular lugs paired nicely with the flat watch case protected by sapphire crystal. Approximately 85% of the respondents like the design of the Tangente. The participants in the poll also responded that seeing the watch on the wrist of their date would make a favorable impression. An impressive 83% would like to see their friend or partner wearing this watch. NOMOS Glashütte prides itself in its perfectly executed minimalist designs and its unconventional brand presentation. The creations from this Glashütte-based Manufacturer are the perfect testament for “less is more”.
2. Longines Heritage Chronograph
Although this is not made in Germany, the Longines Heritage Chronograph scored high in our poll, thus ocuppying the respectable second place in our survey. The appearance of this Swiss Chronograph was favored by 77% of our subjects. They also stated that the Watch would make a positive impression on a date. Barely any other manufacturer transfers the retro look as authentically as Longines in their current line-up. The curved lettering and the sword hands are reminiscent of vintage timepieces from their own ranks. The off-white, cream colour dial completes the leisure vintage look. Honestly, other chronographs in the style of the 40s to the 60s might have done similarly well had they been included in the selection of this survey. The Longines Heritage Chronograph definitely is one of the most popular men's watches from a woman’s perspective.
3. Junghans Max Bill Automatic
At the third place is the Junghans Max Bill, which confirms watches "Made in Germany" as the grand winner of this survey. Almost three-quarters of respondents (74%) rank the Bauhaus design of the Max Bill high in their selection. The Junghans Max Bill Automatic has a versatile look that can be easily integrated to different styles from your wardrobe. Also, regarding their suitability for dates Max Bill lands at the second spot, only outscored by the NOMOS Tangente. Four out of five respondents would regard seeing the watch on the wrist of their dates highly favorable. At the same time, the Max Bill encounters virtually no rejection: only 1.3% would “never” like to see the watch on the wrist of their dates. Among all timepieces in this survey, the Junghans Max Bill offers top value for money. If you are uncertain which look your date prefers, then the Max Bill is probably your safest bet.
The Runner-Ups: Sporty, elegant watches are the ones to watch
4. Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra
The most popular watch from the House of Omega is the Seamaster Aqua Terra. The sporty, elegant design boasts style, yet without being over-the-top. The neoclassic look of the Omega Seamaster Aqua Terra meets with 61% general approval. Almost as many (60%) would perceive the watch on the wrist of their dates positively. Even if it is not enough for a place in the top three, the Aqua Terra demonstrates that it is a watch that never falls short of impressing your date.
5. Rolex Milgauss
Rolex Milgauss | Ref.: 116400GV
There is a certain appeal with Rolex for men that does not translate for every woman. Although Rolex is one of the most innovative manufacturers in the history of watchmaking and has spawned many classics over the years, Rolex timepieces can be perceived as too flashy at times. Whether this view is justified or not, is of course another story. Among all the available Rolex classics in the survey, the Milgauss comes away as one of the winners. At least 55% of the subjects responded positively to the design and its surprising color accents. 53% of our respondents also reflected that they would like the watch on the wrist of their date.
6. Panerai Luminor Marina
Panerai Luminor 1950 3 Days GMT | Ref.: PAM00535
The Panerai Luminor Marina was our chosen competitor in the race and with 54% of respondents liking the design, it placed just behind the Rolex Milgauss. Regarding consent for dates, it outranked the Milgauss with 56%. In other words, 56% of the respondents imagined to go out with a Panerai wearer. Even if the result for the Panerai Luminor Marina stands proud, a dedicated fan of the brand may be unimpressed by such polls. Still, Panerai’s timepieces signal a very particular aesthetic and they are for those who are not shy of being bold.
The middle ranks: No bonus for the classics
7. Rolex Submariner Black No Date
Rolex Submariner | Ref.: 114060
The Rolex Submariner is perhaps the most famous dive watch there is. In this poll, one would expect a higher placement for this timeless classic or at the very least, it would gain mostly approval from the ladies. To the contrary of our belief, only 53% of our respondents like this iconic timepiece and just as many participants wish that their friend or date would wear the watch to a get-together. That is enough for a middle placement in our ranking, just ahead of another great classic in the world of watches.
8. Omega Speedmaster Professional "Moonwatch"
The first watch on the Moon is just as fashionable today as it was half a century ago, when the first edition was presented. Similar to the Rolex Submariner, approval of the design trails behind the high expectations you would place on such a recognizable watch. However, a 53% approval rating still puts it in the predominantly positive range. The Speedmaster Professional does significantly better than the Rolex Submariner in the question whether you would like to see the watch on the wrist of a date: with 60% consent, it ranks higher in approval for dates than it does regarding the design appeal.
9. TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre 5 Day-Date
Not all Carreras are the same. Only a few models are as diverse as the TAG Heuer racing classic. For this poll, we have selected the Carrera Calibre 5 Day-Date into the race. In contrast to most other models with the Carrera logo, the TAG Heuer Carrera Calibre 5 does not have a chronograph function. Despite the fairly low design ratings at just 47% of voters in favour, it still places in the middle rank for a date watch. The timepiece garnered mostly favorable votes regarding a date situation (53%). The overall ranking for this contender is a middle rank in our cross-gender popularity ranking.
10. Rolex Oyster Perpetual Datejust
The appeal of the modern iteration of the Rolex Datejust to the female audience is abysmal. This surprised us, because the Datejust is a very popular ladies watch. Every now and then, you can even spot the men’s version on a lady’s wrist. The Datejust, similar to the Panerai Luminor are prime examples of the boyfriend look, and yet the design received a mere 45% approval rating and only 48%, less than half of our respondents, would appreciate it if their date wears the watch.
Less commendable: Massive watches falter
11. Breitling Navitimer 01
Only 36% of our sample group liked the design of the Breitling Navitimer 01. The watch did only marginally better in terms of making a positive impression on a date. Only 37% responded that they would like to see the Navitimer on their date’s wrist very much or somewhat. The classic Navitimer, at least according to our survey, is not recommendable as a perfect date watch.
12. Hublot Big Bang Gold
Hublot Big Bang | Ref.: 301.PM.1780.GR
As is true for all watches, the timepiece has to fit the wearer’s image. This statement rings particularly true for the Hublot Big Bang. Hublot Big Bang is the kind of watch that demands a presence and it is not easy for any wrist to carry. Regardless of the question of how well the watch complements one’s wrist, the design of the Big Bang did not score favorably with our test audience, as only 34%of them found the look appealing. Just 31% see it as the style of the person she wanted to sit across the table from a date. As a watch for a date, it seems that the Big Bang doesn’t live up to its name and perhaps even reduced to a faint crackle instead.
13. Audemars Piguet Royal Oak
Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Extra-Thin | Ref.: 15202ST.OO.1240ST.01
It is somewhat surprising that yet another design icon came in below our expectations. The Audemars Piguet Royal Oak with its famous octagonal shape lands here in the rear quartile of our poll. Scoring 31% equally for design and date-worthiness, the Gerald Genta concept that coined the sports luxury watch design did not do well.
The Losers: Square Statement Watches
14. Heuer Monaco CAL. 11
The TAG Heuer Monaco Calibre 11 marked another downfall from a watch icon. The poor performance of the Monaco shows that, in this specific survey the label of the classic is irrelevant. Like it or not, positive impressions on a date are based purely on aesthetic sensibilities in the here and now. The edges and eye-catching design traits of Monaco seem overwhelming at the first glance. It may even fall into the category of acquired tastes. A consolation for Monaco fans: the appeal grows with time. The watch, which so deliberately deviates from the norm, does not convince in the instance of first impressions.
15.Jaeger-LeCoultre Reverso Classique
Admittedly, it is not easy to place the Reverso in the Sub-Sahara South of this list, since this art-deco classic is the epitome of elegant timepieces for the style savvy gentleman with a certain sense of nostalgia. The Reverso is the last of an endangered species in the current watch world which favours the bold. Its distinctive design most certainly stands out from the crowd. However, in this survey that proves to be more of a curse than a blessing. Just under a quarter of respondents (24%) feels attracted to the design and a measly 15% approved it as a suitable date watch. The oldest contender in this selection (the basic design dates back to 1931), can be perfectly paired with a tailored suit. On a first date then, you may want to keep it a bit more casual. Just as well, you could always score well perhaps with love at second sight.
Whether sporty or elegant, chronograph or three-handed watch, do not go out on a limb on the question of what watch to wear to impress your date. Ultimately, the impression one gets from your accessories is based on your personal style and how you wear the piece. Our advice to you for your safest bet: Follow your personal style instincts and chose the timepiece that you are most comfortable wearing.