Unlock Membership Benefits
  • Spend $1, Earn 1 Point
  • 10% OFF on accessories
  • $10 OFF on materials
Unlock Membership Benefits
  • Spend $1, Earn 1 Point
  • 10% OFF on accessories
  • $10 OFF on materials

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

by Winnie Li Posted on June 08, 2023

Apple watches are more than just smart devices that can track your health, fitness, and notifications. They are also fashion accessories that can express your personality and style. With so many Apple watch models and bands to choose from, how do you find the perfect one for you? And how do you make your Apple watch band stand out from the crowd?

In this article, we will give you the ultimate guide to Apple watch bands. We will cover everything you need to know about the different Apple watch models, types of bands, how to create your own custom Apple watch bands with laser engraving, and how to choose the best band for your needs and preferences. Whether you are looking for a sporty, elegant, or unique band, we have you covered. Read on to discover how to transform your Apple watch into a stunning accessory that reflects your individuality and creativity.

personalized engraved apple watch bands

In This Article

  • Apple Watch Models
  • Types of Apple Watch Bands
  • How to Create Your Own Custom Apple Watch Bands?
  • FAQs of Choosing and Using Your Apple Watch Band
  • Conclusion

Apple Watch Models

Before we dive into the guide to Apple watch bands, let’s take a quick look at the different Apple watch models currently on the market and their case sizes. Apple has released ten generations of Apple watches since 2015, and they come in various sizes, ranging from 38mm to 49mm. Here is a summary of the case sizes of each model:

  • Series 1 to 3: 38mm or 42mm
  • Series 4 to 6 and SE: 40mm or 44mm
  • Series 7 and 8: 41mm or 45mm
  • Ultra: 49mm

It's important to note that all Apple Watch models from Series 3 onwards are compatible with most band types, thanks to a clever design feature that allows for easy band swapping. This gives users the flexibility to change the look of their watch simply by changing the band. 

Types of Apple Watch Bands

Now that you know the different Apple watch models and their case sizes, let’s explore the different types of Apple watch bands that you can pair with your device. There are many types of bands available on the market, from official Apple bands to third-party sellers. They vary in terms of material, design, price, and comfort. Here are some of the types of Apple watch bands that you can choose from.

Apple Watch Sport Bands

Introduced with the first generation of Apple watch in 2015, these are the most basic and affordable types of Apple watch bands, costing $49 each. Made of custom high-performance fluoroelastomer, which is a flexible and durable material that resists sweat and water, they are ideal for casual wear and sports activities. They also have a pin-and-tuck closure that allows you to adjust the fit easily. Apple watch sport bands come in various colors and two sizes: S/M and M/L. 

pride edition apple watch sport band
sky apple watch sport band
bright orange apple watch sport band

image credit: Apple

Apple watch sport band size

41mm case: S/M fits 130–180mm wrists and M/L fits 150–200mm wrists.

45mm case: S/M fits 140–190mm wrists and M/L fits 160–210mm wrists.

Apple Watch Sport Loop

These are another type of Apple watch band that is suitable for sports and fitness. They are made of soft, breathable nylon weave that feels comfortable on your skin. They have an easily adjustable hook-and-loop fastener that secures the band firmly. They are ideal for running, hiking, cycling, and other outdoor activities.

pride edition apple watch sport loop
starlight apple watch sport loop
storm blue apple watch sport loop

image credit: Apple

Apple watch sport loop size

41mm case: one size fits 130–200mm wrists.

45mm case: one size fits 145–220mm wrists.

Apple Watch Solo Loop

These are a unique type of Apple watch band that have no buckles or clasps. They are made of smooth silicone that stretches to fit your wrist snugly, ideal for everyday wear and casual occasions.

strom blue apple watch solo loop
starlight apple watch solo loop
purple fog apple watch solo loop

image credit: Apple

Apple watch solo loop size

The 41mm case models come in sizes 1~9, and the 45mm case models are for sizes 1~12, you can download the Apple printable tool to measure your wrist.

Apple Watch Braided Solo Loop

The braided solo loop is another type of Apple watch band that has no buckles or clasps. They are made of stretchable recycled yarn interwoven with silicone threads designed for ultracomfort. They come in various colors and sizes. They cost $99 each and are ideal for everyday wear and casual occasions.

pride edition apple watch braided solo loop
bright orange apple watch braided solo loop
purple fog apple watch braided solo loop

image credit: Apple

Apple watch braided solo loop size

Same as the solo loop, the braided solo loop also comes in two sizes, sizes 1 to 9 for the 41 mm case model and sizes 1 to 12 for the 45 mm case model. 

Leather Apple Watch Bands

These are types of Apple watch bands that are made of leather with different designs and closures. Some examples are the Leather Link and the Modern Buckle.

The Leather Link is made of Roux Granada leather handcrafted in France. It has a quilted design that creates a textured surface that conforms to your wrist. It has a magnetic closure that allows you to adjust the fit easily.

apple watch with leather band
apple watch leather band

image credit: Apple

The Modern Buckle is made of Granada leather from France with a smooth top-grain finish. Its buckle is actually a two-piece magnetic closure that’s delightfully simple to secure. These leather bands are ideal for formal wear and business occasions. 

apple watch with leather band
leather apple watch band

image credit: Apple

Leather apple watch band size

The leather link comes in two size S/M and M/L. The 41mm case models' S/M size fits 130–160mm wrists and M/L size fits 140–180mm wrists. The 45mm case model's S/M size is for 140–180mm wrists and M/L size is for 165–205mm wrists. 

The modern buckle comes in three size, small (135–150mm wrists), medium (145–165mm wrists) and large (160–180mm wrists).

Stainless Steel Apple Watch Band

There are two types of stainless steel bands for Apple watches. The first one, called Milanese Loop, is a type of Apple watch band that is made of woven stainless steel mesh with a magnetic closure that allows you to adjust the fit easily. It costs $99 each. The Link Bracelet, costing $349 each, is made of more than 100 components of stainless steel alloy with a custom butterfly closure that folds neatly within the bracelet. It has a sophisticated and elegant design that matches the case color of your device. Like leather bands, they are ideal for formal wear and business occasions.

apple watch with stainless steel band
apple watch with stainless steel band

image credit: Apple

Stainless steel apple watch band size

Milanese loop: 41mm case models fit 130–180mm wrists and 45mm case models fit 150–200mm wrists.

Link bracelet: 38mm case models fit 135–195mm wrists and 42mm case models fit 150–200mm wrists.

Nike Apple Watch Sport Band and Sport Loop

These are types of Apple watch bands that are designed by Nike for sports and fitness enthusiasts. They are the same as the standard Sport band and loop, but have perforations or reflective threads for breathability and visibility. They are ideal for running, hiking, cycling, and other outdoor activities. The Sport Band is made of fluoroelastomer like the regular Sport Band, but with compression-molded perforations that reduce weight and improve ventilation. The Sport Loop is made of nylon weave like the regular Sport Loop, but with reflective threads that shine when light hits them.

nike apple watch sport band
nike apple watch sport loop

image credit: Apple

Nike sport band and sport loop size

The Nike sport bands come in two size S/M and M/L. The 41mm case models' S/M size fits 130–180mm wrists and M/L size fits 1450–200mm wrists. The 45mm case model's S/M size is for 140–190mm wrists and M/L size is for 160–210mm wrists. 

The Nike sport loop fits 130–190mm wrists with 41mm case models and 145–220mm wrists with 45mm case models.

Apple Watch Ultra Bands

These are types of apple watch bands that are designed for the Apple Watch Ultra, the most rugged and durable smartwatch from Apple. The Alpine Loop is made of two integrated layers of high-strength yarn with a titanium G-hook fastener that secures the band firmly. It is ideal for explorers who need a band that can handle any terrain. The Trail Loop is made of a lightweight and comfortable fabric with a pull tab for easy adjustment. It is ideal for runners who need a band that can breathe and adapt to their movements. The Ocean Band is made of a tubular elastomer with a titanium buckle and loop that resist water and corrosion. It is ideal for divers who need a band that can survive deep underwater.

apple watch ultra band
apple watch ultra band
apple watch ultra band

image credit: Apple

Apple watch ultra band size

The Alpine loop comes in three sizes, small (130–160mm wrists), medium (145–190mm wrists) and large (165–210mm wrists).

Trial loop comes in two sizes, S/M (130–180mm wrists) and M/L (145–220mm wrists).

The Ocean band is available in one size for 130–200mm wrists. 

Hermes Apple Watch Band

Hermes Apple watch bands are a collaboration between Apple and Hermes, the luxury fashion house. They are ideal for formal wear and fashion occasions. There are available in two models, leather and woven nylon bands. Some examples are the Single Tour, the Double Tour, the Gourmette, and the H Diagonal. The Double Tour is made of Swift calfskin with a long strap that wraps twice around your wrist. It has a stainless steel buckle that matches the case color of your device. 

apple watch with Hermes band
Hermes apple watch band

image credit: Apple

How to Create Your Own Custom Apple Watch Bands?

Why Should You Create Custom Apple Watch Bands?

One of the most exciting features of the Apple Watch is the ability to customize the band. Creating your own custom Apple Watch bands is not only fun, but it also allows you to create a truly unique accessory. If you want to add some personality and style to your Apple watch, whether you're creating a band for personal use, as a gift, or for your business,  you can create your own personalized Apple watch bands with the help of laser engraving.

What is Laser Engraving?

Laser engraving is a process that uses a focused beam of light to remove material from the surface of an object, creating a permanent mark. You can use laser engraving to create unique patterns, logos, names, monograms, or any other design you can imagine on your Apple watch bands.

laser engraving engravable silicone rainbow color apple watch band

Laser engraving is an ideal method for customizing Apple Watch bands because it offers high precision, long-lasting results, and it can be used on a range of materials, including silicone, leather, and metal.

Shop laser engraving machines

Choosing Engravable Apple Watch Bands

One of the most popular and versatile materials for personalized Apple watch bands is silicone. Silicone is a synthetic rubber that is flexible, durable, water-resistant, and comfortable to wear. Silicone bands come in various colors and styles, and they are easy to clean and maintain. Silicone is also a great material for laser engraving because it can withstand high temperatures and produce crisp and clear designs. 

custom engraved silicone apple watch band

One of the best options for laser engravable silicone watch bands is the Laserable Rainbow Silicone Watch Bands from xTool. These bands have a unique feature that allows you to engrave colorful designs without any extra coloring or filling. The bands have a rainbow layer underneath the surface that is revealed when you engrave them with a laser. The result is a stunning and vibrant design that is fade-proof and scratch-resistant. 

custom engraved apple watch bands

Made of soft silicone materials, these bands are breathable and comfortable to wear. They are also easy to install and remove with a pin-and-tuck closure. They are compatible with all Apple Watch models and sizes, and they fit wrists from 140mm to 210mm. You can order these bands from xTool’s website for $17.99 per pack of four. You will also get access to the design files included with your purchase of the watch band. You can use these files to engrave your own custom Apple watch bands.

Shop watch bandsfeatures of xtool's engraved silicone watch bands

You can also find other types of bands that are suitable for laser engraving, such as leather, wood, or metal.

The Process of Engraving a Personalized Apple Watch Band

engraving a apple watch band

Once you have chosen your band, you are ready to start the engraving process. You will need a laser engraving machine that can handle your material. You will also need laser engraving software that can convert your design into a file that the laser machine can read. 

Generally, it involves these steps:

Design: Start by creating a design. This could be text (like a name or phrase), an image, a logo, or a combination of these. Use design software to create your concept.

Preparation: Load your band into the laser engraving machine. You'll need to ensure it's correctly aligned and secure to get the best result.

Settings: Set up the laser engraving machine with the correct settings for your chosen band material. This includes the power of the laser, the speed of engraving, and the number of passes the laser should make.

Engraving: Start the engraving process. The laser machine will trace your design onto the band, permanently etching it into the material.

Finishing: Once the engraving is complete, you may need to clean the band to remove any residue from the engraving process. Now your custom Apple Watch band is ready to wear!

custom engraved apple watch bands

xTool F1 Portable Laser Engraving Machine

portable laser engraving machine

Price:

$1,599.00
$1,999.00
Learn More

FAQs of Choosing and Using Your Apple Watch Band

How to Choose an Apple Watch Band?

1. Measure your wrist and your Apple watch

The first step in choosing an Apple watch band is to measure your wrist and your Apple watch. You can use a cloth tape measure, a piece of string, or a paper strip to wrap around your wrist and get the circumference in millimeters. You can also use Apple’s sizing guide that allows you to print and cut a paper band to find your best fit.

Next, you need to know the size of your apple watch case. Apple offers the Apple Watch Series 8 in 41mm and 45mm casing sizes, the Apple Watch Ultra in 49mm, and the Apple Watch SE in 40 and 44mm size options. You can check the size of your Apple watch by looking at the back of the case or by going to Settings > General > About on your watch.

2. Choose the material and style of the band

The second step in choosing an Apple watch band is to decide on the material and style of the band. There are many types of bands available for the Apple watch, such as:

Silicone bands: These are flexible, durable, water-resistant, and comfortable bands that are ideal for everyday use and sports activities. They come in various colors and styles, such as solid, rainbow, floral, or patterned. Some silicone bands have a special feature that allows you to create colorful designs with laser engraving without any extra coloring or filling.

Leather bands: These are elegant, classic, and sophisticated bands that are suitable for formal occasions and casual wear. They come in different types of leather, such as smooth, pebbled, crocodile, or suede. They also come in different colors and finishes, such as black, brown, tan, or metallic.

Metal bands: These are sleek, modern, and stylish bands that are perfect for adding some shine and glamour to your Apple watch. They come in different types of metal, such as stainless steel, aluminum, titanium, or gold. They also come in different designs and shapes, such as link, mesh, loop, or chain.

Nylon bands: These are lightweight, breathable, and colorful bands that are great for outdoor activities and casual wear. They come in different types of nylon, such as woven, sport loop, or hook-and-loop. They also come in different colors and patterns, such as solid, striped, or plaid.

You can choose the material and style of the band that matches your personality, taste, outfit, and mood.

3. Consider the occasion and activity you will use the band for

The third step in choosing an Apple watch band is to consider the occasion and activity you will use the band for. Different bands have different advantages and disadvantages depending on what you want to do with your Apple watch.

For example:

If you want to use your Apple watch for fitness tracking or swimming, you should choose a band that is sweat-proof, water-resistant, breathable, and easy to clean. Silicone bands are a good option for this purpose.

If you want to use your Apple watch for work or business meetings, you should choose a band that is professional-looking, elegant, and durable. Leather bands or metal bands are a good option for this purpose.

If you want to use your Apple watch for traveling or hiking, you should choose a band that is lightweight, comfortable, and versatile. Nylon bands are a good option for this purpose.

You can also have multiple bands for different occasions and activities and switch them easily with the quick-release mechanism on your Apple watch.

4. Check the durability and maintenance of the band

The fourth step in choosing an Apple watch band is to check the durability and maintenance of the band. Different bands have different lifespans and care requirements depending on their material and quality.

For example:

Silicone bands are generally durable and easy to maintain. They can withstand high temperatures and exposure to water, sweat, and dirt. They can be cleaned with a damp cloth or mild soap and water. However, they may fade, crack, or tear over time.

Leather bands are generally delicate and require more care. They can be damaged by water, sweat, oil, or chemicals. They can be cleaned with a soft cloth or leather cleaner and conditioner. However, they may stain, scratch, or wear out over time.

Metal bands are generally sturdy and require less care. They can resist water, sweat, and dirt. They can be cleaned with a soft cloth or jewelry cleaner and polish. However, they may tarnish, corrode, or break over time.

Nylon bands are generally durable and easy to maintain. They can handle water, sweat, and dirt. They can be cleaned with a damp cloth or mild soap and water. However, they may fade, fray, or shrink over time.

You should choose a band that is suitable for your usage frequency and environment and that you can take care of properly.

5. Compare the cost and availability of the band

The fifth and final step in choosing an Apple watch band is to compare the cost and availability of the band. Different bands have different prices and availability depending on their brand, material, quality, and design.

For example:

Apple-branded bands are generally more expensive and less available than third-party bands. They range from $49 to $539 depending on the type of band. They can be purchased from Apple’s website or stores or from authorized resellers.

Third-party bands are generally cheaper and more available than Apple-branded bands. They can be purchased from online platforms such as Amazon or Etsy or from local shops or markets.

You should choose a band that fits your budget and that you can easily find and order. You should also check the reviews and ratings of the band before buying it to ensure its quality and compatibility with your Apple watch.

How to Change Apple Watch Band?

Changing your Apple watch band is easy and quick. You can follow these steps:

1. Place your Apple watch face down on a soft surface like a lint-free cloth or a padded mat.

2. Hold down the band release button on the back of the watch case, then slide the band across to remove it. If the band doesn’t slide out, press the band release button again and make sure that you hold it down.

press the release button on the back of the apple watch

image credit: by Unboxingalism via Youtube

slide the band to remove it

image credit: by はいさいにいさん via Youtube

3. Make sure that the text on the back of the new band is facing you, then slide the new band in until you feel and hear a click.

4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 for the other side of the watch to complete the change.

Conclusion

Apple watch bands are a great way to customize and personalize your Apple watch. They can also enhance the functionality and comfort of your smartwatch. From understanding the different models and types of Apple Watch bands to the exciting possibilities of laser engraving, we hope this guide has been informative and inspiring. The choice of band can drastically change the look and feel of your Apple Watch, transforming it from a piece of tech to a personal statement, a reflection of your style, or a perfectly tailored accessory for any occasion.

Whether you opt for an official Apple band or choose from the myriad third-party options, remember that the best band for you is one that meets your needs in terms of style, comfort, functionality, and budget. And don't forget the potential of laser engraving to create something truly unique - a band that tells your story, right there on your wrist.

In conclusion, your Apple Watch band is more than just a functional necessity; it's an accessory, a statement, and an extension of you. Explore, experiment, and enjoy the process of finding (or creating!) the perfect Apple Watch band for you. Happy accessorizing!

For more questions. Please join our Facebook group to get inspired!

Related Articles