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Here’s why male celebrities are wearing women’s watches

This trend is more subtle, but still manages to make a statement.
Photo: Samir Hussein/Getty

When it comes to celebrity fashion, the sky is the limit: all you have to do is look at an award show’s red carpet to see how far some famous names will go to ensure they grab attention. Yet, one of the latest male celebrity trends is a lot more subtle, and experts are saying that it’s probably here to stay.

Last May, Abel Tesfaye, the artist formerly known as the Weeknd, was spotted at the Cannes Film Festival wearing an 18K white gold Piaget Limelight Gala High Jewelry Watch. With its 565 brilliant-cut diamonds, 124 yellow sapphires, and a price tag that’s strictly upon request, the watch was always going to turn heads, but it was the fact that it’s actually a women’s watch that got most people talking.

This was neither the first nor last time that a male celebrity had worn a technically-designed-for-women watch out in public. Other big names have included Puerto Rican rapper Bad Bunny, actor Timothée Chalamet, and Succession star Jeremy Strong, to mention but a few. And the list, according to watch experts, will probably just be getting longer.

Speaking to The Journal about the trend, vintage watch expert Alan Bedwell, explained how “the idea of gender today is less relevant than it ever has been in the history of mankind… [And] this is very much translating into the world of watches.” In other words while, in the past, men may have felt too self-conscious to wear a watch designed for women, today they are less likely to do so.

While this may not seem like a big deal to some – after all, a watch is a watch – there are some obvious differences between watches created for women and men. The watchface, for example, tends to be between 38mm and 46mm for men’s watches, and between 26mm and 36mm for women’s. Moreover, men’s watches tend to be more about perceived functionality, which is reflected in their names (pilot, dive, race), while women’s watches are more about luxury with more expensive materials like diamonds being used. 

So, the shift some men are making from men’s to women’s watches is actually multifaceted. There’s an element of being able to show off more with more opulent jewellery, sure, but there’s also an element of being able to express their style better.  And that’s a beautiful thing all around.

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