In this article, we are going to go over the top 10 watch brands that offer close to nickel-free timepieces. Watches are a wonderful accessory that can greatly improve your outfit or give you a sense of sophistication. For certain people, however, they can’t wear normal timepieces due to a nickel allergy. A nickel allergy can lead to painful rashes or mild irritation.
For those who suffer from a nickel allergy, metallic watches can cause constant discomfort. Sure, a plastic watch could suffice, but they have a cheap look to them. Fortunately, there are many watch brands that offer close to nickel-free timepieces that are both stylish and safe for your skin.
We have to disclose that there’s no watch known to be completely 100% nickel-free other than Fossil watches. Most, if not all watches, will have a trace amount of nickel. The amount is so low that the watches are deemed as “nickel-free”. It’s best to reach out to the company if you are unsure of the nickel content. If you have a severe allergy, it’s best to stick to all silicone watches.
We were able to find a watch that was labeled as “nickel-free” which was the CX Swiss Military Watch. You can scroll down to the bottom of the page to see this one.
Here is a quick rundown of the watch brands that had the best minimal nickel watches:
- Swatch – Best Swiss Made Brand
- Timex – Best Known Brand
- Louis Moinet – Best Limited Edition Selection
- Fossil – Completely Nickel-Free Brand
- Radiant – Best Quality “Cheap” Watch
- Mobvoi – Best Smartwatch
- Skagen – Best Titanium Collection
- Huawei – Best Professional Smartwatch
- Swiss Military- Best Military Nickel-Free Watch
- Nordgreen –
Top 10 Nickel-Free Watch Brands
1.Swatch – Best Swiss Made Brand
Swatch is one of the largest Swiss watch brands to exist. They were formed in the 1980s and is known for both creative and playful designs. They work with multiple artists and brands to come up with unique collaborations with affordable price tags.
The company was founded in 1983 by Nicholas Hayek. He was formerly the CEO and Chairman of the Board of the Swatch Group from 2010, the year he passed away. All of their watches are labeled as “Swiss Made” and they produce their watches mainly in Switzerland, but one of the components may derive from China, Malaysia, and Thailand.
Their most popular nickel-free, or hypoallergenic watch, is the SUTB403 Sistem 51 Unisex Watch. It features a three-hand analog display with vibrant white and black hands that make it easy to see in the time in the dark. The watch also has a date display positioned at the 3:00 mark. It also has a Swiss automatic movement with 19 jewels and is water-resistant up to 30 meters.
2.Timex – Best Known Brand
Timex is one of the best-known brands out there when it comes to watchmaking. Their first mantel clocks were created 167 years ago and they’ve been in business ever since. They began as the Waterbury Clock Company in 1854 and only used gears from metal rather than carving them from wood. It wasn’t until 1901 when they created pocket watches that cost just $1.
By the 1960s, their watches were so affordable, durable, and stylish that every third watch sold in America was a Timex. By the mid 20th century, the Timex watch became a symbol of independent women. As time ticked by, their wound brass springs were replaced by quartz crystal, meaning you never had to wind your watch again.
The Timex Weekender 40mm Watch is their most popular men’s Hypoallergenic timepiece. It features a silver-tone 40mm brass case with a mineral glass crystal and Indiglo light-up dial. The band is a brown leather slip-thru strap that can accommodate an 8-inch wrist circumference. The whole watch is water-resistant up to 30 meters. Additionally, there are a few variations of the watch to suit your own style.
After speaking with Timex customer service, they pointed me in the direction of the Q Timex 1978. They assured me that this watch was nickel-free and one of their most popular women’s watches.
It was inspired by one of their first and most iconic quartz movement watches. It features a sleek 35mm stainless steel case and a vintage-looking angled date window. It has a period-correct domed acrylic crystal, faceted, hand-applied hour marker, and a battery bump. Overall, it’s a very elegant watch that’s sure to match any style.
3.Louis Moinet – Best Limited Edition Collection
Louis Moinet is an independent watch brand located in Saint-Blaise, Switzerland. He was apparently one of the greatest watchmakers to ever live. In 1816, he invented the Chronograph and has since been awarded “World’s First Chronograph” by the Guinness World Records Organization.
This brand is one of the most prestigious brands in the watchmaking industry. Louis Moinet has been the preferred choice of some of the most reputable personalities in the world, past and present. Additionally, has some of the most desirable limited collections you can find today.
The Louis Moinet Tempograph Chrome is a stunning piece of men’s jewelry. It features an automatic movement encased within a 44mm stainless steel case. It’s complemented by a blue alligator strap and nickel-free stainless steel folding buckle. It also features an openwork dial that showcases a 20-second retrograde. If you want a chance at owning a piece of luxury, you’d better be willing to drop a cool $25k.
If you’re looking for a woman’s watch, check out this Mecanograph Silver Guilloche Dial Watch. Like the men’s watch, this one is also limited edition.
It is a COSC-certified automatic movement within a 44mm nickel-free stainless steel case. There’s a beautiful silver guilloche dial that showcases a small seconds hand and date display. It’s complemented by a genuine alligator strap with a stainless steel folding buckle. There are only three of these and it’s going to cost $16,500.
4.Fossil – Completely Nickel-Free Brand
Fossil has been around since 1984 and was founded by Tom Kartsotis. The company is based in Richardson, Texas and they offer a variety of brands including Relic, Fossil, Michele Watch, Zodiac Watches, and more. They also make licensed accessories for mega brands such as BMW, Michael Kors, and Armani Exchange.
It wasn’t until 1993 when Fossil had its initial public offering. Since then, Fossil has introduced both fashion watch lines and upscale, more expensive Swiss lines of watches from Switzerland. Additionally, Fossil purchased Misfit for $260 million with the intent to take their technology and turn it into more traditional-looking watches.
One of their most popular nickel-free watches is from the Grant collection. It’s a stainless steel leather chronograph watch with a leather band. This watch features modern Roman numeral markers with an analog chronograph display. It’s encased in a hardened crystal lens that’s resistant to scratches.
It’s water-resistant to 50 meters and can be used while showering or swimming for short periods. The best part is that it costs a mere $75.
If you’re in the market for a women’s watch, one from the Riley collection is right up your alley. This is a gorgeous rose gold-tone stainless steel watch. It features a quartz movement with a multifunction display.
It’s encased within a hard mineral crystal lens that’s scratch-resistant. It’s also water-resistant up to 100 meters. You can also customize the watch with complimentary engraving.
5.Grupo Cardarso – Best Quality “Cheap” Watch
Grupo Cadarso is a Spanish brand that was founded in 1948. They have been one of the leading manufacturers of watches due in part to their quality and design for both men and women.
Their sector is made up of 6 different companies that operate in 3 countries. Their oldest company, which was founded in 1974, is GERESA. Their second oldest company is ARMETISA, which was founded in 1994. Their most recent addition to the group is AUROCRONO, which was founded in 2016.
After a bit of back and forth with the company, we discovered that their RADIANT Smartwatch is the ideal unisex watch that was the least likely to cause a nickel reaction.
It’s a digital smartwatch with a black dial and a blue band. The case is made from steel and the band is a comfortable silicone material. It’s splash-proof and comes with a 2-year warranty. It has the capability to monitor your heart, count calories, and keep track of your sleep. It has most of the functions of a FitBit, but without the hefty price tag.
6.Mobvoi – Best Smartwatch
Mobvoi was founded in 2012 by ex-Googler Zhifei Li. His main goal was to define the next generation of human-machine interaction. They were actually the only firm to exist in China that is equipped with its own Chinese voice recognition, search technologies, and semantic analytics.
In 2015, Mobvoi x Google formed strategic partnerships. The Series C was completed and backed by Google very shortly after partnering with Google to provide Chinese voice search technology to Wear OS in China. In 2016, the TicWatch was launched and managed to raise 2.1 million UDS on Kickstarter.
The TicWatch Pro 3 is one of their most “in demand” watches they offer. It’s an advanced health and fitness monitoring device that features multiple sports modes with a GPS barometer adn 24-hour heart rate monitoring. You can also use the watch to track your sleep, stress, and noise. It has 1GB of RAM and 8GB of ROM. It also has a stainless steel bezel and a 1.4 inch AMOLED screen with auto adjustable brightness and an anti-fingerprint glass cover.
The TicWatch Pro 3 doesn’t contain enough nickel to cause an allergic reaction, according to some exchange between us and customer service. However, if you suffer from a severe allergy to nickel, it may be best to proceed with caution.
7.Skagen – Best Titanium Watches
Skagen was founded in 1989 by Henrik and Charlotte Jorst. They moved from Denmark to the US in 1986 when Henrik became a sales manager for a brewery in Carlsberg. They decided to open their own business as U.S representatives for business gift watches from a Danish manufacturer and Jacob Jensen designer watches.
After they located to Comtech Watches, they decided to begin designing their own watches. It wasn’t until 1991 that they chose Skagen Denmark as their brand and began designing.
You will find that Skagen watches offer the same clean lines and precision as Swiss watch movements that are used in European-made watches, but at a lesser cost. Skagen watches allow you to wear a high-quality timepiece without sacrificing your budget.
It’s important to note that Skagen watches are marketed as “nickel-safe”, but they aren’t 100% nickel-free based on EU regulations. Most buyers of Skagen watches have confirmed that they do not have a rash when wearing the watch, but if you are extra sensitive, proceed with caution.
The Skagen Men’s Quartz Watch is one of their most popular because it has a titanium case, which is known to be nickel-free. The band, however, is stainless steel, but may be able to be switched out for a titanium band. The watch itself has a 3 atm water pressure resistance and features chromed and luminous hands under mineral glass. Even though it says it’s a men’s watch, it works as a women’s watch as well.
8.HUAWEI – Best Professional Smartwatch
Huawei has been around since 1987 when it was founded by Ren Zhengfei, a former deputy director of the People’s Liberation Army engineering corps. As of the start of 2010, 80% of the world’s top 50 telcom companies had been involved with Huawei. This list includes Bell Canada, BT, Clearwire, Cox Communications, Globe Telcom, Motorola, Orange, PLDT, Portugal Telcom Google, T-Mobile, TalkTalk, and Vodafone.
In 2015, Huawei announced that they were creating a smartwatch. As of 2020, their latest model is the Huawei Watch GT 2e and was originally launched in india. This is an Android Wear-based smartwatch.
Our pick for their best watch is the HUAWEI Watch 3 Pro 4G. Our reasoning for this is because it’s made from titanium which we’ve said has no nickel in it. It features a sapphire screen for a professional look and a 1.43 inch AMOLED display. It has a high-response touch-sensitivity screen and many different features and apps.
9.Swiss Military – Best Nickel-Free Military Watch
Both Swiss MIlitary and CX Swiss Military timepieces are manufactured in Switzerland and licensed under Montres Charmex SA. The history of the brand goes all the way back to 1926 when Max Burgin founded Montres Charmex SA.Swiss Military was one of the first companies to launch military watches and has since remained the benchmark for quality.
There are other brands that market themselves as “Swiss Military”, but they are nothing more than cheaper quality watches. Swiss Military is known for having some of the most professional grade watches known to man. They are the creators of the 20,000 foot water-resistant watch that made it into the record books.
Their most popular nickel-free watch is the CX Swiss Unisex 1727 Diving Watch. It’s made from nickel-free stainless steel and features a sapphire crystal and rotating bezel. It’s water-resistant to 1000 meters and also contains a Swiss-made quartz movement. This watch is stylish for both men and women alike. We liked this watch the most because it was the only one that was advertised as completely nickel-free.
10.Nordgreen – Best Simplistic Watch
Nordgreen began in 2017 under Pascar Sivam and Vasilij Brandt. Their name is a Danish surname. It breaks down as “Nord” for Nordic identity and “Green” for commitment to our environment. Nordgreen has a “Giving Back Program” that supports health, educational, and environmental challenges faced by our communities.
The brand is representative of a collection that has both an aesthetic appeal and simple purpose. Each member of the Nordgreen team creates a customer experience that caters to both the customer’s needs and making the customer experience as good as it can be.
The Nordgreen Philosopher Black Leather watch is one of the best they sell. They don’t seem to trigger a nickel-allergy in those who may wear it.
It features a beautiful large white dial making it a simplistic timepiece. It features Scandinavian craftsmanship and has a beautiful rounded elevated silver case and an elegant leather strap with a rose gold buckle. It’s water-resistant up to 30 atm and the ideal watch for any gender.
As we mentioned earlier, there’s no watch that’s 100% nickel-free, but most watches will advertise them as that. This is due to different standards in various countries.
As said before, it’s best that you check with the manufacturer regarding the amount of nickel that may be present in the watch. The only watch we found that was advertised as 100% nickel-free was the CX Swiss Military Diving Watch. We hope that this article has pointed you in the right direction for finding a “nickel-free” watch that fits in with your unique lifestyle.