Watch bands are available in different materials. Two of the most popular materials that are used to make watch bands are rubber and silicon. Many years ago, watch bands made of natural rubber were extremely uncomfortable. People often complained about getting rashes and allergies after wearing those bands. In addition, they were quite sticky back then and were mostly non-breathable. However, the description has significantly changed over the decades.
Evolution of Rubber and Silicone bands
The revolution in the manufacturing industry has resulted in consumers having a wide variety of choices in terms of quality and performance. Rubber and silicone watch bands, in particular, are now available in different styles and colors. During the initial days, rubber straps were mostly used by sportsmen, and more specifically divers. However, since the 1980s, Chopard has proven that rubber watch bands are not just to be used under the water with its Millie Miglia motor-inspired watch range.
Difference between Silicone and Rubber
It is generally seen that people often get confused between the two because they appear more or less the same. This article will help you differentiate between the two so that you make an informed decision while purchasing your next watch.
These two are branches of the same tree. While rubber refers to natural rubber, silicone refers to synthetic rubber; the main difference between the two lies in the manufacturing process of rubbers.
Natural Rubber Bands
Rubber is a mixture of natural as well as synthetic components. However, silicone is entirely made up of synthetic components. Rubber watch bands are becoming increasingly popular among the new generation. They prefer rubber, especially for sports watches. The rubber that is used in watch bands is more durable. It is suitable to wear during summers as it is generally resistant to sweat and saltwater. In addition, it has negligible elasticity and, therefore, creates less friction.
Benefits of using rubber straps
Rubber itself is a big umbrella, and it has different varieties under it. For example, silicone rubber, PVC rubber, PU rubber, etc., are all different kinds of rubbers. The composition of each type, its usage, time, personal preference, and the exposure to different elements are a few of the different factors that help a person determine the performance, durability, and comfort of each watch band. Rubber watch bands, today, are used for multiple purposes. They are used as a perfect fit for a sports watch, diving, casual wear, and even as an accessory for luxury watches. Over the years, rubber watch bands have surely made a mark in the watch industry and are a must-have accessory for every watch enthusiast.
The key features of rubber watch straps include their suppleness and their expandability. They are resistant to UVA radiation. Unlike other materials, rubber bands are easy to clean. They are available in different styles, patterns, and colors. Compared to metal bracelets, they are light-weight, which does not make the hand feel heavy while wearing watches. One of the unique characteristics of rubber bands is that they are unisex. One cannot distinguish between men’s and women’s watch bands. They are scratch-resistant and therefore, look fresh and new even after a long time. Despite all these incredible characteristics, rubber watch bands are available at a low cost, and they can be easily exchanged if they get damaged.
Silicone, on the other hand, is soft in touch. It is more economical as compared to rubber and has more elasticity. Another difference between the two is that silicone cracks easily, and thus; it is not fit for rugged use. Since it is entirely synthetic, even the smallest particles get easily stuck to the surface of the watch. Therefore, it is quite capable of becoming a hub for various bacteria and infections. This also means that silicone watch bands appear to be dirty way more quickly as compared to rubber watch bands. Silicone watch bands require constant cleaning.
It is non-reactive, and therefore, the risk of allergies reduces significantly with this material. The use of silicone has been on the rise lately, and it is used largely by the beauty and manufacturing industry. This material is very breathable, and therefore, it does not feel uncomfortable to wear silicone watch bands during summers. They are available in a wide variety of colors, giving the consumers many options to choose from.
Which watch band is better?
Choosing a suitable watch band that is comfortable and which fulfills the purpose involves various factors. Whichever watch band you choose, your personal style, preference, and purpose will be reflected through it. Silicone and rubber watch straps are both very flexible. Unlike resin watch straps, which break if they are flexed too much, silicone and rubber do not break easily. They are also soft in touch, which makes them comfortable on the wrist. The drawback of these materials is that they are not very heat resistant. They have a lower tensile strength as compared to other watch band materials. The best thing about silicone and natural rubber watch bands is that they are very affordable. This allows you to experiment with different styles and watches. Luxury watch bands will definitely cost you a fortune, but it is worth every dime with all the qualities that a rubber watch band offers. Now, it entirely depends on what type of watch you are looking for and the purpose of the watch that will help you choose between a rubber watch band and a silicone watch band. We have discussed all the pros and cons of the two in detail. The final choice is in the hands of the buyer as it entirely depends on the personal preferences of a person. We hope you choose the best watch band for yourself!