Best watches for women—timepieces for every budget

Our fashion team select the best watches for women, from everyday timepieces to evening accessories

woman in a pink top looking at her watch
(Image credit: Future / Getty Images)

The best watches for women are timepieces that you'll invest in now, but love for a lifetime.

When it comes to the best watches for women, look for styles that won't date. Jewelry trends tend to be less rapid than fashion trends, with seasonless styles forming the basis of most watch brands' collections. Think about your watch as an added accessory or an extra piece of jewelry. Consider when you'll want to wear it—will you wear it to casual, work, or evening functions? Or are you simply looking for a watch that will slot into your capsule wardrobe and that you will wear everywhere? 

You will need to take your skin tone into account when picking a metal shade. Think about 'what color suits me' before making any purchases. Silver tones look great against darker skin tones, whereas gold gives warmth to all skin tones. In recent years, rose gold has become popular in the watch and accessory world. Rose gold works particularly well on yellow-based skin tones, as the pink tone of the metal creates balance. 

Best watches for women—quick links

Best watches for women—as chosen by our experts

We've considered a range of styles and budgets. These are the 12 worth looking at.

best watches for women Certina moon watch

(Image credit: Certina)

1. Certina

Best for sporty style watches

Specifications

RRP from: £265 (UK only)

Reasons to buy

+
Sporty, modern style
+
Swiss made
+
For day and evening

Certina is a Swiss watch brand, created in 1888. They specialize in sports watches, so precision and reliability are key, but that doesn't mean they compromise on beauty. With fantastic underwater technology and dynamic design, Certina balances form and function. 


best watches for women Michael Kors watch

(Image credit: Michael Kors )

2. Michael Kors

Best for affordable designer watches

Specifications

RRP from: $85 / £79

Reasons to buy

+
Designer brand
+
Fashionable
+
Modern

Much like the best designer bags, designer watches act as entry points to a brand. Michael Kors' watches offer refined style in a mix of metals to suit a multitude of tastes—expect a little bit of sparkle too, making these great day-to-evening styles. 


best watches for women Cartier watches

(Image credit: Watches fo Switzerland / Cartier)

3. Cartier

Best for luxury watches

Reasons to buy

+
Investment purchase
+
Beautiful craftsmanship 

A Cartier watch is a big investment purchase, you know you're buying something that will last forever. Because of this, the watch styles are incredibly timeless and devoid of the extra embellishment that you might find on more trend-led pieces. When it comes to Cartier, established in 1903, less is more: delicate watch faces contrast with weightier or bracelet-style straps. They'll look elegant with anything but add to your best blazer and shirt combination for a really slick look.  


best watches for women Gucci watches

(Image credit: Gucci)

4. Gucci

Best for fashionable watches

Specifications

RRP from: $950 / £720

Reasons to buy

+
Fashion forward watches
+
Well-known brand

Gucci may not be the first brand you think of for watches, but the Gucci range is really popular thanks to the brands' fashion prowess.

The brand sells classic styles, featuring their easily recognizable red and green striped design, and some sleek metal iterations. But they also design fun, trend-led pieces that will be relate to Gucci's creative vision for each season. 


Best watches for women, Olivia Burton secret garden watch

(Image credit: Olivia Burton)

5. Olivia Burton

Best for feminine watches

Specifications

RRP from : $100 / £79

Reasons to buy

+
Feminine watches
+
Colorful
+
Great price points

Rooted in nature, you'll see that the glorious world around us is a huge source of inspiration for the Olivia Burton brand. Floral prints, pretty pastel hues and delicate bee, butterfly and dragonfly emblems to create watches with a sense of magic and fantasy. These are gorgeously feminine watches at great price points, making them ideal gifting items. Team with any one of your best dresses to carry on that ethereal feel. 


Best watches for women, Movado red watch

(Image credit: Movado)

6. Movado

Best for fashion watches

Specifications

RRP from: $395 / £295

Reasons to buy

+
Modern design
+
Colorful options

Movado has a long and rich heritage in watchmaking, having launched in 1881. A Swiss watch brand, you're buying a combination of their expertise and their reputation for creating modern watches with a fashion aesthetic. Striping back some of the fussier detailing you might see on watches from big Swiss watch houses, Movado is all about sleek design and block color. A statement accessory on their own, you can easily team a Movado watch with your best jeans and tee and still have a strong and directional look. 


Best watches for women Fossil smartwatches

(Image credit: Fossil)

7. Fossil

Best for smart watches

Specifications

RRP from: $249 / £199

Reasons to buy

+
Youthful styles
+
Changeable watch styles
+
Engraving available

Fossil watches are extremely high-quality. Their watches do have a more androgynous feel to them and they have also expanded their watch collection into smartwatches which are well worth checking out. Utilizing OS by Google their feminine smartwatches are a stylish option for those who want their multi-functional watch to look good.


Best watches for women Swatch watches, pink Swatch watch

(Image credit: Swatch)

8. Swatch

Best for colorful watches

Specifications

RRP from: $55 / £46

Reasons to buy

+
Colorful designs
+
Lots of choice
+
Mix of price points

Swatch is probably one of the most commercial and recognizable brand names of watches. With an almost endless selection, Swatch is where watch fun starts. With a magical array of colors and prints, there is something for every taste. From bold and bright, cartoonish and chic metallics, Swatch has really got all the bases covered. And better still, this high-quality brand also has incredible price points too.


Best watches for women DKNY watches

(Image credit: DKNY)

9. DKNY

Best for branded watches

Specifications

Prices from: $115 / £137.36

Reasons to buy

+
Ultra-modern
+
Sleek design
+
Monograming 

DKNY have been well-known for their directional watch collection for many years. An entry point to the rest of the Donna Karen label, they offer designer style at a much more affordable price point. Iconic for its 'New York' aesthetic—in the same way a Burberry trench coat makes us think of London—strong, sleek, modern are the key terms that spring to mind.


best watches for women Sekonda embellished bracelet/cuff watch

(Image credit: WatchShop.com / Sekonda)

10. Sekonda

Best for bracelet watches

Reasons to buy

+
Glitzy watches
+
Great for special occasions
+
Affordable price points

This British watch brand is all about high-quality watches at affordable prices. We've opted for their bracelet watches, as they deliver a high-end aesthetic at a pocket-friendly price, but if you're looking for any style of watch at a reasonable price then Sekonda is a good place to start. 


Best watches for women Skagen silver, steel metal watch

(Image credit: Skagen)

11. Skagen

Best for minimalist watches

Reasons to buy

+
Minimalist design
+
Subtle
+
Will go with everything

Much like the best Scandinavian clothing brands, Danish brand Skagen is known for its sophisticated and minimalist design aesthetic. Expect fuss-free design, chic color options, and classical styles that will never date. 

best watches for women, Rolex watch Oyster Perpetual

(Image credit: Selfridges / Rolex)

12. Rolex

Most luxurious watch

Specifications

RRP from : £4,200 (not available online)

Reasons to buy

+
Investment pieces
+
Future heirlooms

Largely considered the finest and most luxurious watches in the world, a Rolex watch is a highly sought-after item. The best Rolex's for women are true investment pieces—like the best Chanel bags, that can be loved, worn, and passed from generation to generation. From subtle and sleek to bold and diamond-encrusted designs, a Rolex watch will certainly never date. Not retailed online, the exclusive Rolex watch is an in-store shopping experience. 

Rivkie Baum

Rivkie is a fashion editor, writer and stylist with over fifteen years' experience in the industry. Having studied design and pattern cutting at the London College of Fashion, Rivkie fell in love with styling and journalism, covering fashion weeks in London, Paris and New York. 


Specialising in plus size fashion, Rivkie has long championed that style is for everyBODY and has been a regular talking head on a host of radio stations and television shows, pushing for greater representation for plus size women and fashion throughout her career.