The best Apple Watch bands in 2023: our 20 favorite ones

Apple has one of the best wearables on the market today with the Apple Watch Series 8. It comes with powerful health- and fitness-tracking features, like 24/7 continuous heart rate monitoring, ECG, fall detection, SpO2 (blood oxygen) monitoring, body temperature monitoring, sleep tracking, and more. And with watchOS 9 (watchOS 10 is coming later this year), you can track pretty much any workout and even set up custom workouts to fit your needs. And if you want to take things even further, there’s the Apple Watch Ultra that’s designed for more extreme workouts and activities.

But the Apple Watch does so much more than fitness tracking. You can get your notifications on it, make and receive phone calls, communicate with others through Messages, listen to audio, check the weather, etc. It’s literally a small computer on your wrist.

When you buy an Apple Watch, it comes with a strap by default. But sometimes you want to dress up your Apple Watch, or perhaps have another band specifically for working out in. Or maybe you want to coordinate your Apple Watch with your outfit of the day or even just match it up with your current favorite watch face. Or perhaps you get bored with one style and just want to switch it up every now and then. There are so many reasons why you would want to have multiple Apple Watch bands, and here are the best ones on the market today.

Apple Braided Solo Loop in blue.
Apple Braided Solo Loop

Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

Apple Braided Solo Loop

Pros

  • Super comfortable
  • Suitable for casual and dressier occasions
  • Lots of colors and designs

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Stretches out over time

Apple always seems to find a way to bring the stylish and the practical together. With the Apple Braided Solo Loop, you’ll be wearing a durable watchband made from stretchable recycled yarn, interwoven with silicone threads. What this translates into is an incredibly comfortable but durable band that fits comfortably without moving around your wrist.

The Braided Solo Loop bands are compatible with Apple Watch SE and Apple Watch Series 4 or newer, just make sure you measure your wrist correctly to get the right band. As the Solo bands have no buckle or any other way to reduce in size, you’ll want to make sure you’re getting the right fit.

Apple Braided Solo Loop
apple watch spring straps roll product impressions sport loop
Apple Sport Loop strap

Andy Boxall/Digitaltrends.com

Apple Sport Loop

Pros

  • Incredibly comfortable to wear
  • Infinitely adjustable
  • Like the sweatpants of Apple Watch bands
  • Affordable

Cons

  • Not suitable for super fancy occasions

We love the look and feel of the Apple Sport Loop band. The nylon material is soft, doesn’t get hot and sweaty, and the various colors are all a lot more dramatic and eye-catching in real life than in pictures. Rather than the pin-and-tuck system on the Sport band, the Sport Loop uses hook-and-eye for an infinitely adjustable fit that suits everyone. Great for the gym, office, and casual wear, it’s the Apple Watch band to choose when you first buy your watch.

Apple Sport Loop Band
The Midnight Modern Buckle strap on an Apple Watch.

Apple Modern Buckle

Pros

  • High quality Granada leather
  • Durable leather
  • Fortified with Vectran for extra strength
  • Secure magnetic closure

This is a very expensive band, but that’s for a very good reason. The Modern Buckle is made from supple and high-quality Granada leather that’s lightly milled and tumbled to create a material that’s soft on the skin but still durable.

Apple has added a weave of Vectran for additional strength (so it should outlast your Apple Watch), the same material used by NASA to make landing airbags for the Mars rover. The buckle isn’t actually a buckle either, it’s a magnetically fastened two-piece design that’s easy to secure. A classic style with a futuristic design — the Modern Buckle lives up to its name.

Apple Midnight Modern Buckle
apple-watch-milanese-loop

Bill Roberson/Digital Trends

Apple Milanese Loop

Pros

  • Made with stainless steel
  • Gold, silver, or graphite colors
  • Magnetic wrap closure
  • Very modern and elegant look

If metal is more your style, Apple has you covered. The company’s stunning Milanese Loop, a modern interpretation of a design developed in Milan at the end of the 19th century, touts a stainless-steel gold, silver, or graphite design, wraps around your wrist, and adjusts with the help of magnets.

Apple’s Link Bracelet, meanwhile, features butterfly closure folds within the bracelet, allowing for a clean look. The onboard release button also makes it easy to add or remove links without special tools.

Apple Gold Milanese Loop
Apple Midnight leather link

Apple

Apple Leather Link

Pros

  • Handcrafted Roux Granada leather
  • Professional and elegant aesthetic
  • Multiple leather colors
  • Magnetic closures

If you enjoy quality leather, then the Leather Link from Apple is a great option. It’s made with genuine handcrafted Roux Granada leather that is soft and supple to the touch. It comes in tan, midnight blue, and black colors to suit everyone’s tastes. It easily wraps around the wrist and has built-in magnetic closures that will keep it secure and fastened all day. This is a perfect leather option if you want something that looks modern, elegant, and simple.

Apple Leather Link
Apple Link Bracelet in silver

Apple

Apple Link Bracelet

Pros

  • Super-professional and elegant aesthetic
  • Simple release button on links
  • Custom butterfly enclosure
  • No tools required to adjust fit

Those who prefer classic metal link bands will like the Apple Link Bracelet. It’s made with a tough and durable stainless steel alloy in the case. The brushed metal look is also elegant and professional-looking, making your Apple Watch a total fashion statement. The links in the bracelet also have a simple release button, so you can remove links and adjust the fit without any special tools.

The silver color costs $349, while the Space Black version is $449. It’s pricey, but traditional watches and styles don’t come cheap.

Apple Link Bracelet
Pride Edition 2023 Sport Band on Series 5 with an iPhone 14 Pro in PopSockets Disney Pride case

Christine Romero-Chan / Digital Trends

Apple Pride Edition Sport Band

Pros

  • Soft and comfortable silicone
  • Fun and colorful design
  • Secure pin-and-tuck closure
  • Affordable

Cons

  • “Sprinkles” aesthetic may not be for everyone

Apple’s 2023 Pride Edition Sport Band features a fun sprinkle-like design that will make you think of Funfetti birthday cake. Aside from the design, this is the traditional and classic Sport Band, which is made with a soft and comfortable silicone material. The pin-and-tuck closure ensures that it’s always secure and safe on your wrist.

This particular band matches with the Pride 2023 wallpapers on iOS 16 and watchOS 9. If you don’t care for the sprinkles look, Apple still sells the Pride Edition Sport Loop and Braided Solo Loop. There are also other solid colors of the Sport Band if you don’t want the Pride Edition.

Apple Watch Pride Edition Sport Band

Apple Pride Edition Sport Band

best Apple Watch bands Nomad Leather Strap side

Nomad Horween Leather Strap

Pros

  • Genuine Horween leather
  • Slim and elegant profile
  • Lightweight and comfortable to wear
  • Gets better with time

This slim and stylish strap is one of many great Nomad offerings. The vegetable-tanned leather strap comes from Horween, a reputable tannery in Chicago, and it develops a gorgeous patina the longer it’s worn. Nomad uses stainless steel on the buckles and the adapter that connects to the Apple Watch. It’s delightfully lightweight and comfortable on the wrist, and the buckle design means it’s dead simple to put on in a jiffy. You can choose from two different leather colors, custom hardware, and sizes.

Nomad Modern Strap - Apple Watch

Nomad Horween Leather Strap

Kades Metal Apple Watch band

Kades

Kades Metal Band for Apple Watch

Pros

  • Elegant and classy look
  • Double clasp butterfly closure is secure
  • Removable links for easy size adjustment
  • Much more affordable than Apple’s
  • Silver or black colors

Cons

  • Needs tools to remove links

Though Apple’s Link Bracelet is excellent, it’s also very pricey. The Kades Metal Apple Watch band offers an affordable way to sport a stainless-steel band. Like most stainless-steel watchbands, it features a double clasp in a butterfly style and is easily adjustable via removable links. It comes in both silver-colored stainless steel and black.

KADES Metal Band Compatible with Apple Watch Band 49mm 45mm 44mm 42mm iWatch Ultra Series 8 Series 7 SE 2022 6 5 4 3 2 1, Stainless Steel Link Bracelet,(49mm/45mm/44mm/42mm,Silver)

Kades Metal Band for Apple Watch

Meridio Suede Apple Watch Strap Pair.

Meridio Apple Watch Suede Bands

Pros

  • Different look than leather
  • Soft and supple suede
  • Comfortable to wear
  • Many different colors

Tired of the usual old leather bands and silicone straps for your Apple Watch? Take a look at Meridio’s suede watch bands, which are different than other bands out there yet still neatly fit in with casual and smart outfits. Meridio is an Italian brand with more than a decade of experience in fashion and leather goods. The suede band is soft to the touch, supple, and comfortable to wear. There is enough of a nap on the strap for it to catch the light, while the thickness tapers off toward the tip, making it more wearable.

Meridio Apple Watch Suede

Meridio Apple Watch Suede Bands

Casetify's Cats band for the Apple Watch.

Casetify Cats Apple Watch band

Pros

  • Genuine Saffiano leather
  • Lightweight and comfortable
  • Stylish
  • Relatively affordable
  • Plenty of other customizable designs

Leather, metal, and braids are great, but what if you want something with a bit more personality? Casetify has a massive range of Apple Watch bands that deliver just that, and our current pick of the bunch is this Cats band. It’s made from vegan “Saffiano” leather, so it feels great on the skin, and is fully biodegradable too, so you don’t have to worry about your cruelty-free lifestyle polluting the planet after you’re gone.

The design looks great too, with a bunch of cute cats adorning the band. Best paired with a matching colored Apple Watch casing, this might not be the choice for those who favor austere over audacious, but it’s sure to be someone’s favorite pick here. Not into cats? Check out the to see if they have one for you.

Casetify Cats Apple Watch band

Casetify Cats Apple Watch band

Nomad Sport Band.

Nomad Sport Band

Pros

  • Soft and comfortable silicone
  • Hypoallergenic and sweat-resistant
  • Multiple color options available

Cons

  • Sporty look doesn’t suit everyone

Nomad’s Sport Bands are made with a comfortable and lightweight silicone material. They’re similar to Apple’s Sport Band with the pin and tuck kind of enclosure, but it has a more rugged look and feel to them with the lugs and buckle enclosure. Even though it’s designed to be a sporty band for fitness aficionados, anyone can wear it and it makes a bold statement. It’s a perfect accessory for the Apple Watch, no matter which size you have. You can also get it in multiple colors from Nomad’s site, as well as choose an even slimmer version.

Nomad Sport Band - 45mm | Black
best Apple Watch bands Southern Straps Nato Strap top.

Southern Straps Nylon Bands

Pros

  • Unique look
  • Tough and durable nylon
  • Comes in sizes for all Apple Watches
  • Multiple colors

Cons

  • Sometimes pinches wrist hair

A textured nylon strap, the Southern Straps band features stitching running down each section, giving it a unique look. It feels very hard-wearing and has been double-bonded and heat-sealed to make sure it doesn’t fall apart under tough conditions. We love the khaki and red version, which comes with a choice of colors for the Apple Watch connectors in either 41mm/40mm/38mm or Ultra 45mm/44mm/42mm sizes. We were let down slightly by the strap loop, which sometimes pinches wearers who have wrist hair.

Southern Straps Black And Grey Nylon Band

Southern Straps Nylon Bands

best Apple Watch bands Nyloon Watch Band Side.

Napier Apple Watch Nylon Band

Pros

  • Tough and durable nylon
  • Very affordable
  • Multiple sizes and hardware colors
  • Can swap out with 20mm or 22mm straps

Nyloon’s nylon band feels like it will last a while and withstand some rough treatment, which is just what you need from this popular style. We’ve been wearing the Napier design, which comes in navy blue and red, and we find it comfortable and stylish. The shiny hardware is attractive, and the Apple Watch adapter pieces have spring-loaded bars, so you can swap out the strap for another 20mm or 22m version of your own choice.

Napier -- Apple Watch Nylon Band

Napier Apple Watch Nylon Band

Ullu Apple Watch Strap
Ullu Apple Watch Strap

Andy Boxall/DigitalTrends.com

Ullu Premium Leather Band

Pros

  • Variety of colors to choose from
  • Genuine high quality leather
  • Multiple sizes

Cons

  • Kind of expensive for a third-party band

This beautiful leather Apple Watch band is handcrafted from high-quality stingray leather. Available in an assortment of colors, the Ullu premium leather watch band pairs perfectly with the larger 42mm Apple Watch case.

ullu Apple Watch Band for Series 1, 2, 3 & 4 in Premium Leather - Knight Rider - UAWS42SSPL12

Ullu Premium Leather Band

The Strap Smith Baseball Glove Straps

Pros

  • Great for sports enthusiasts
  • Made from authentic Rawlings item materials
  • Super distinctive and unique
  • Customizable

Cons

  • Very expensive
  • Additional fee for Apple Watch hardware

Handcrafted from vintage baseball gloves, this band is perfect for the sports enthusiast. This band is not only stylish but durable as well. If you’re more of a football fan, the Strap Smith also makes a custom football band. Just be aware you have to pay an extra $25 if you want the necessary hardware fitted to attach the strap to the watch. Bonus: you can choose the color to match your choice of watch case.

Baseball Glove Straps

The Strap Smith Baseball Glove Straps

Pad and Quill Lowry Cuff
Pad and Quill Lowry Cuff

Pad & Quill Lowry Cuff Apple Watch Leather Band

Pros

  • Full-grain leather
  • Rich brown whiskey color
  • Rugged yet classy look
  • Suede underside makes it comfortable

Cons

  • Thick and bulky
  • Only for larger Apple Watch

Renowned for its high-quality, great-looking leather Apple accessories, Pad & Quill makes two different straps for the Apple Watch, but we’ve singled out the Lowry Leather Cuff. Made from full-grain leather in whiskey brown with hand-finished stitching and nickel buckles, the look is rugged yet classy. Suede on the underside of the strap makes it comfortable to wear. The one problem? It’s only for the 42mm/44mm/45mm Apple Watch.

Pad & Quill Lowry Cuff Apple Watch Leather Band

Pad & Quill Lowry Cuff Apple Watch Leather Band

Form Function Form Button Stud Band

Form Function Form Button-Stud Apple Watch Band

Pros

  • Unique design with no buckle or clasp
  • Multiple leather and color options
  • Customizable

Cons

  • Need to ensure length to make sure it fits
  • Not adjustable

If you’re angling for something a bit different, have a look at Form Function Form’s funky Button Stud strap, which does away with any type of buckle or clasp. Instead, it has a stainless steel stud that holds a long leather band in place. You can order the stud and adaptor in a color that suits your Apple Watch, including options like Rio Tan, Predator, Russet Chromexcel, and Latigo. Just make sure you check the length to ensure the overall fit is correct.

Button-Stud Apple Watchband

Form Function Form Button-Stud Apple Watch Band

MobyFox Hokusai Apple Watch band.

Christine Romero-Chan / Digital Trends

MobyFox Hokusai Cherry Blossom Band

Pros

  • Beautiful artwork design
  • Comfortable and lightweight silicone
  • Traditional watch buckle design
  • Includes two sets of adapters for all Apple Watch sizes
  • Inexpensive

MobyFox has a ton of unique designs to choose from, but the Hokusai Cherry Blossom band is one of the prettiest. From the artist Hokusai, the Cherry Blossom design is full of pinks and teals, and depicts one of the prettiest times in Japan. This band is made from lightweight silicone that is comfortable to wear, and the traditional watch band buckle style ensures a secure fit.

The rose gold hardware is especially pretty if you have a rose gold Apple Watch, but it can be worn with other case colors too, though it may clash. If you purchase from Amazon, it comes with two sets of adapters to fit all Apple Watch sizes. MobyFox also has officially licensed bands for Disney, Star Wars, Marvel, DC, Harry Potter, and more if that’s more your thing.

Hokusai - Cherry Blossom Smartwatch Band - Inspired by the Artist, Compatible with Apple Watch (not Included) - Fits 38mm, 40mm, 42mm and 44mm

MobyFox Hokusai Cherry Blossom Band

LifeProof Eco Friendly Apple Watch Band in Trident Blue.

LifeProof

LifeProof Eco Friendly Band for Apple Watch

Pros

  • Comfortable and lightweight
  • Made with 99% ocean plastic yarn
  • Secure buckle enclosure
  • Multiple color options
  • Inexpensive

Cons

  • Style may not be for everyone

If you want an Apple Watch band that is comfortable and good for the planet, then check out LifeProof’s Eco Friendly bands. These are made with 99% ocean plastic yarn material, which is basically recycled plastic from the ocean. It’s a sustainable plastic material, and it’s lightweight and comfortable to wear, even all day. It has a traditional buckle enclosure so that it’s secure. There are multiple colors to choose from, and they match nicely with LifeProof’s cases. It comes in sizes for all Apple Watches, and it is very inexpensive, so you can pick up a few to match your outfits or mood. All while still helping the planet.

LifeProof Eco Friendly Band for Apple Watch 42mm/44mm/45mm - Trident (Blue)

LifeProof Eco Friendly Band for Apple Watch

Frequently Asked Questions

How will I know whether an Apple Watch band will fit my wrist?

Imagine, if you will: you’ve finally found the perfect Apple Watch band, ordered it, and now it’s here. Only — disaster! It’s too small for your wrist. How can you avoid that? Well, if you’re not able to head out to a physical store to take a look at your chosen Apple Watch bands, then the only way to really know for sure is to measure your wrist. Thankfully, we have a comprehensive guide on how to measure your wrist for an Apple Watch, and how to measure your wrist for Solo Loop Apple Watch bands too.

What are the best Apple Watch bands for sensitive skin?

The last thing you want is for your Apple Watch band to trigger any skin sensitivity issues you might have. While sensitivity issues with Apple Watch bands are most often related to sweating, friction, or nickel allergies, there can be such a wide range of other triggers that we can’t cover them all in great detail. However, there are some band material choices you can make which should hopefully reduce the chances of skin sensitivity triggers.

Leather is often a strong choice, because it looks good, feels great, and more often than not, is suitable for those with sensitive skin. Since it’s a natural material, it’s less likely to trigger any issues, and while it may not be vegan friendly, it’s a good choice if you want a good-looking band that’s kind to your skin. Metal bands are another good choice for the same reasons — just make sure to pick a stainless steel or titanium band to avoid any pesky nickel issues.

Finally, there are synthetic options. Sports bands are a good pick for those who sweat a lot, for obvious reasons. But if you’re not into the sporty look, maybe take a look at other bands made from silicone, as there are some high-quality silicone offerings that don’t look as if they’re designed only for Olympians.

How often should you change out your Apple Watch band?

As often as you like! There’s no hard and fast rule as to how often you should change out your band, the only real limitation is how often you want to go through the process of changing it. We have a guide on how to change your Apple Watch band, and it’s relatively straightforward, so you could feasibly change out your band every day. A more realistic option may be to have a classier strap for classy affairs and an everyday band for everything else, but it’s really up to you.

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