The Ultimate Guide to Apple Watch Bands: Sizes, Styles, and More

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When Apple introduced the Apple Watch back in 2015, they ingeniously implemented a system that allows users to effortlessly swap watch bands. Unlike traditional watches with delicate spring bars, changing leather watch bands for the Apple Watch is a breeze. This innovative feature has opened the door to quick customization according to mood, activity, or outfit. This is particularly handy when you desire a waterproof band for swimming or exercising, as well as a leather band for more formal occasions.

Apple has continuously expanded its range of bands, offering over 640 options in more than a dozen distinct styles. To navigate this variety, here’s a comprehensive guide to all the currently available Apple Watch bands.

Apple Watch Band Compatibility

As the Apple Watch has evolved, so have its sizes. The Series 7, Series 8, and Apple Watch Ultra are now available in 41mm and 45mm, replacing the previous variations. Apple’s guidance states, “You can match most bands with any Apple Watch Series 3 or newer case of the same size.” This means a 41mm band works with 40mm, 42mm, and 45mm watches, while a 45mm band fits 42mm, 44mm, and 49mm models.

Sport Band

The Sport Band can be considered the quintessential Apple Watch band. One of the initial releases, it has since been offered in a staggering 120 colors, making it the most iterated band. Crafted from comfortable fluoroelastomer, it’s resistant to sticking during workouts and swimming. Priced at $49, it’s tempting to own multiple colors for different occasions. The Sport Band is refreshed with new collections every spring and fall.

The Sport Loop comes in S/M (140 – 190 mm wrists) and M/L (160 – 210 mm) sizes, catering to 41mm and 45mm watches.

Solo Loop

Introduced in fall 2020, the Solo Loop comes in two versions: the $49 Solo Loop made from “liquid silicone rubber,” and the $99 Braided Solo Loop, composed of “stretchable recycled yarn interwoven with silicone threads.” These single-piece bands require precise sizing for a comfortable fit. Be cautious not to choose one that’s too tight, as it might feel constricting.

Apple notes that these bands can stretch with use. However, personal experience reveals that the Braided Solo Loop stretches more than the standard Solo Loop.

Sport Loop

Priced at $49, the Sport Loop is a lightweight, nylon band secured by a hook and loop fastener. It’s adjustable and comes in a range of colors and patterns. While comfortable, it’s worth noting that it absorbs water, making it less suitable for swimming. It’s perfect for workouts due to its lightness.

The 41mm models fit wrists of 130mm – 200 mm, while the 45mm model caters to 145mm – 220mm.

Nike Sport Band and Sport Loop

Nike Sport Bands and Sport Loops have been available since 2016 and 2018, respectively. The Nike Sport Band mirrors the standard version but features perforations, while the Nike Sport Loop incorporates Nike branding. Both are priced at $49 and are compatible with the same Apple Watch models and wrist sizes.

Leather Bands

The $99 Leather Link is a magnetic two-piece band that ensures a snug fit when worn. Despite its comfort, it’s slightly heavy. Available sizes are 41mm (130mm – 160mm wrists) and 45mm (140mm – 180mm wrists).

The $149 Modern Buckle is designed for smaller watch models (38mm, 40mm, and 41mm). It’s adjustable through a pin and five holes beneath the buckle. Testing in an Apple Store is recommended for proper sizing.

Stainless Steel Bands

The original $99 Milanese Loop is a braided mesh band featuring a magnetic clasp. Its size is easy to adjust for any wrist within limits: 41mm fits 130mm – 180mm wrists, while the 45mm version accommodates 150mm – 200mm.

The Link Bracelet, available in Silver ($349) and Space Black ($449), is the largest and heaviest band in Apple’s lineup. Precisely machined, it includes a $45 set of five additional links for larger wrists. Apple’s innovative link removal system ensures a perfect fit. If you like gold apple watch bands– check the best options here.

Apple Watch Ultra Bands

With the launch of the Apple Watch Ultra, three new bands were introduced. Despite the 49mm case size, these bands are compatible with 44mm and 45mm watches.

The $99 Alpine Loop is slightly stretchy with a titanium hook for closure. Available in small (130mm – 160mm), medium (145mm – 190mm), and large (165mm – 210mm) sizes, it’s a lightweight band suitable for various activities.

The $99 Trail Loop is akin to the Sport Loop but features titanium lugs and an adjustable tab. Available in S/M (130mm – 180mm) and M/L (145mm – 200mm) sizes, it offers a slight upgrade in materials.

The $99 Ocean band, made from tubular elastomer, accommodates wetsuits and water sports. An optional $49 extension is available for more length.

Hermès Bands

Hermès, the French company, collaborates with Apple to offer bands in leather and nylon, costing between $319 and $849. These bands feature stainless steel lugs and buckles. Hermès Apple Watch models include exclusive watch faces and a branded sport band.

Selecting the Perfect Apple Watch Band

While this guide focuses on bands sold by Apple, third-party sellers offer their own options, often available through online retailers like Amazon. The quality of third-party bands can vary, sometimes falling short of genuine Apple-authorized bands. If you can’t find the exact design you desire from Apple or wish to explore additional options, third-party bands might be worth considering.

With a plethora of Apple Watch bands available, you can effortlessly personalize your watch to suit your style, be it sporty, elegant, or a combination of both.

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