Guide to WatchGecko Straps – Different Types of Leather
WatchGecko is a company which was created in 2010. They aim to provide a range of quality watch straps and offer other brand names as well as their own. WatchGecko create high quality alternatives for various watch brands, such as Breitling, Citizen, Seiko and Panerai, to name but a few. They are based in the U.K. and strive to bring the customer only the best quality products, at fair prices.
The first thing that hit me when I opened the package of WatchGecko watch straps I received, was the overpowering, beautiful smell of leather. The second thing that hit me, was the quality. Of the 9 straps that arrived at my doorstep, all of them were amazing in their own way. These straps range from £14 to £32 (there are some more expensive or cheaper options on their site), and there’s sure to be one to suit any of the watches you may own. For starters, the variation in sizes offered is truly great. Most of their straps start at 20mm, and finish at 24mm, ensuring anyone looking for a strap this winter should be sure to find one in a size of their choosing. The watches listed in my opinion, fall under three categories, dress, sport and chunky. Whatever style you’re looking for, I’m sure you’ll find this answer in this review.
The straps I tried were made of genuine Italian leather, and for their price seemed to compete with other straps with a more expensive price tag. One issue I had with some of these straps, was the problem with the number of holes punched into them. Around 3 of the straps were slightly large, however it’s worth noting I have a wrist size of 6.5 inches, so this shouldn’t affect most people.
One of the straps I received, was a 20mm (although it also comes in 19 or 22), alligator print in black, which retails at £28. Usually, I have some issues with alligator print watch straps, mainly because brands decide to add the most over the top shine to all of them, which in my opinion makes them seem cheap. Although WatchGecko’s was shiny, it was not overly used here and made the strap only seem more expensive. It also benefitted from a gorgeous suede like material on the underside of the strap, something a lot of the others I received did, which makes the straps feel really nice once on, and only added to the high quality feel they omitted. I’d say this strap falls under the dress category, and would look great paired with something with a cream dial, accentuating the dial.
My personal favourite out of the straps in my possession, is the vintage styled Italian leather strap, with contrasting stitching at the lugs and base. This strap retails at £32 and screams quality from the moment you pick it up. It’s just the right thickness, and beautifully tapers from the lugs all the way down to the buckle, starting at 20mm and ending around 18mm. The grain of leather used features a natural distressed look, and the colour works very well with watches using gold hands and numerals. The strap is handmade, and the quality is really high. The stitching used is very well done, not looking like it would come lose at all. The underside of the strap is the same as the outside, and while usually I like suede or other softer material on my wrist, this feels just as good. This strap would work well in a dress environment, and would be sure to suit anyone with their shirt around the office.
Another strap that I enjoyed, was a 20mm brown, with cream stitching around the edging of the strap. This strap is similar to the one stated above, however doesn’t taper as much, and features a black soft material underneath. Its thinner than the vintage styled strap, and this makes it seem slightly cheaper because of this, although it is. The colour is a red-ish brown, and works really well with a cream dial. This strap retails at £32, and comes in sizes 20-24mm.
Two of the other straps I reviewed, were large 22mm rugged straps, falling into the chunky category. They both feature oversized buckles and strap loops, and go well with any large faced watch someone may own. The first watch strap out of the two, is a brown distressed one. Starting as dark brown and slowly fading to light, it resembles that of a worn look. The underside of the strap is made of the same leather, as well as having a stitching all the way around in a cream colour. Whilst being a little on the thick side, and only tapering by less than a millimetre, this strap is a little on the large side for me. However, teaming it up with a large dive watch, I feel this really complements the strap, as well as its distressed worn look being right at home on a dive watch.
The second strap out of the two rugged ones I reviewed, is a black and red alligator strap. The same dimensions as the distressed brown one, but with slightly smaller loops. This particular strap has the most stitching on it out of all the ones I have reviewed. The stitching here is very well done, and doesn’t seem like it would come lose any time soon. The underside of the strap is a beige suede material, and feels so soft and comfy on the wrist. Something I really liked compared to the other straps in this review. The holes in the strap are a rectangle shape, something I haven’t really seen on a strap before, however I like how these look with the rest of the aesthetic. Both these straps retail at £28, and are available in 22m and 24mm, with the brown distressed one also coming in a 26mm, to surely suit every watch, big or small.
The last few straps I reviewed by WatchGecko, are three straps, all slightly similar in design. These straps are 22mm, all black and with a different colour stitching and design. They also come in either 20mm or 24mm, and retail at £14 each. They all fall under the sport category. The first, a standard black strap with orange stitching. The leather used here has a matt finish to it, with the stitching running all the way along the edges. The underneath of the strap is bright orange, and is made of a slightly softer leather than the other side. The stitching used is subtle enough to be un-noticed at times, but also bright enough to add a nice splash of colour to any watch that its attached to.
Additionally, another strap in the same style is a red and black with small holes punched through each part of the strap. The underside is bright red, and the stitching goes all the way around the strap. The small holes in the strap make it seem sporty and casual, and make it appeal to a more casual look and feel of any watch. Black and red is a pairing anyone can agree with, and I think this strap improves the look of any casual watch you may have in your collection, especially something such as a chronograph.
Another strap in this review made by WatchGecko, is a black racing style leather strap with blue stitching around its edges. It features holes ranging from small to large around the strap, and resembles straps from past times worn by racing drivers on the track. The strap is lightweight, comfortable, and the underside is a bright blue soft leather. The good thing about this particular racing strap, is that most times companies make them seem vintage.
However, this one by WatchGecko, gives it a modern twist to wear with any watch in today’s era. I don’t want to be a cliché here, but it would look great on an Omega Speedmaster.
The final strap within this review, is one which is created by a brand named ZuluDiver. The strap is canvas, green, and has brown leather loops. The underside of the strap is a dark brown leather, and the stitching is really good quality. ZuluDiver straps are made to be durable, and you can tell this from the amazing quality on offer here. I teamed this strap up with a Citizen Nighthawk, and thought the strap really complimented its rugged look. The buckle is brushed, with some nice brand naming stamped on it. The canvas used is really good quality, and I’d have no issue using this strap in an extreme environment. This strap retails at £18, and ranges from 20mm all the way up to 24mm.
In conclusion, each of these straps within this review offers something different. If you’re looking for a good leather strap this winter, which frankly, I was, you need look no further than WatchGecko watch straps. Not only are these straps great quality, they’re also on sale at even better prices. You couldn’t go wrong with any strap within this review, with my favourite being the vintage leather styled, brown leather 20mm strap. This style strap is currently something I think is on-trend within the watch community, and at only £32, you’re sure to appreciate it as much as I do. Let me know in the comments below if what your favourite WatchGecko strap is, and with which watch you pair it with most!
Below are links to all the straps discussed in this review. *Prices may vary from the time of review.