Best 6 Tips On How To Not Scratch Your Watch

How to not scratch your watch is the question every watch collector asks themselves. If you’re struggling with watch scratches and want to avoid them in the future.

Then this blog post is for you. We’ll outline our top 6 tips on how to avoid scratching your watch.

We’ll also answer some top frequently asked questions like; why polishing a watch is bad, and can you buff out scratches on a watch.

How To Not Scratch Your Watch

  1. Accept That Scratches Will Happen
  2. Keep Jewelry Away
  3. Remove During Activities
  4. Keep It Clean
  5. Protective Case
  6. Sapphire Crystal

Watch Scratches FAQ

1. Accept That Scratches Are Will Happen

Getting scratches on your watch are sadly an inevitable part of owning and wearing a watch. So the best thing is to accept that they’re going to happen.

The only way on how not to scratch your watch ever. Is to lock it away in a protective case, in a safe, and never wear it. 

However, what’s the point of owning a great timepiece, if you’re never going to enjoy it.

So, the best thing to do is accept that scratches will happen, but that you’ll do your best to avoid them by implementing the rest of our tips.

2. Keep Jewelry Away

Avoiding wearing jewelry, such as bracelets, on the same wrist as your watch. 

Jewelry will knock against your watch and will increase the amount of scratches on your timepiece. Especially loose, metal bracelets. Those bracelets that constantly move around.

It’s generally frowned upon in the watch community to wear jewelry stacked upon your timepiece. Especially if it’s a luxury watch.

So the best way on how to not scratch your watch, is to avoid any jewelry that will bang against it.

One person who caused a stir in the media with this issue was Meghan Markle. As she was photographed wearing an heirloom of Diana’s, which was a gold Cartier Tank Francaise watch.

Photo of Meghan Markle wearing her luxury Cartier Tank heirloom with 5 bracelets around the watch. Which is how you can cause scratches on the watch.

It was stacked with a lot of other loose fitting bracelets. These will most likely scratch this expensive timepiece.

3. Remove During Activities

Simply being mindful of the activities you’re doing while wearing your watch, will help you to not scratch your watch.

Matching the right watch to the right activity will make sure you aren’t putting a watch that scratches more easily at risk.

a. Sports

A watch that’s built for sports can be worn while playing sports. Sports watches are built to handle knocks and impacts. Even luxury sports watches can handle sports.

While other watch styles, like dress watches, shouldn’t be worn. Learn more about the different watch styles in our guide.

b. Applying Cosmetics

Removing your watch when applying cosmetics is a good call, if you want to keep your watch clean and reduce scratches.

It will also protect your watch from any water damage. As many delicate watches have very low levels of water resistance.

Learn more about the levels of water resistance of watches in our guide.

4. Keep It Clean

Keeping your watch squeaky clean is a great way to reduce the amount of scratches your watch gets. If you wear your watch daily, then of course it will get dirty. 

Check out our guide on how best to clean your watch.

5. Protective Case

Photo of a steel watch safe inside a watch box with a cushion and a lid.

Storing your watch well at night and while traveling is a great lesson in how to not scratch your watch.

The best protective cases for your timepiece are secure watch cases, specifically made for your watch. However, simply wrapping your watch in a microfiber cloth and storing it safely will work too.

Or if you’re really stuck, especially while traveling, then simply wrap your watch in clothing. To help cushion the watch and protect it from scratches.

Also if placing the watch down for a moment, only ever place it with the dial facing upwards. As this will help reduce scratches on the crystal.

6. Sapphire Crystal

The type of crystal you have protecting the dial of your watch matters. Some crystals are stronger and more scratch resistant than other types of crystal.

Sapphire crystal is the crystal that is the most scratch resistant and the strongest. You’ll see sapphire crystal most often used on luxury watches.

If you don’t have sapphire crystal on your watch, you can hire a watchmaker to instal it. This will better protect your watch from scratches.

However, if your watch is a vintage timepiece. Then you might not be able to replace the crystal so extra care needs to be given to it to protect the watch from scratches.

Learn more about sapphire crystal and why it’s considered the best watch crystal today.

a. How to remove scratches from watch crystal

Removing scratches from your watch’s crystal can be done easily, depending on the type of scratch and the type of crystal.

Check out our guide on how to easily remove scratches from your watch’s crystal. We’ll walk you through the best ways to do this.

Do watches scratch easily?

Yes, all watches can get scratched easily. Scratches are always going to happen. However, some materials used in watches are more scratch resistant.

In terms of your watch’s crystal, and how easily that will scratch. Sapphire crystal is the most scratch resistant of all the different types of watch crystals.

Also ceramic is a super scratch resistant material too. You’ll often find luxury watches using ceramic bezel inserts on their dive or sports watches. 

For example Rolex uses ceramic bezel inserts and Sapphire crystal. Rolex even have a bezel that is a combination of ceramic and chrome. Which they named their cerachrom bezel. You can see an example of it below.

However, their Oystersteel watches are just as likely to scratch as any other stainless steel watch.

Rolex Cerachrom Bezel

Is it normal for watches to scratch?

Yes, it is normal for watches to scratch. No watch is immune from scratches. They are a part of owning and wearing a watch.

So that’s why we all need to accept scratches will happen, and employ the tips in this blog post in order to reduce them from happening.

Can you buff out scratches on a watch?

Yes, it’s possible to buff out shallow scratches on your watch.

However, it’s not advised to attempt to buff scratches from your watch. As buffing scratches can change the shape of your watch’s case.

Which can change elements of your watch, and the overall architecture of your timepiece. 

But you can try to buff out scratches from your watch’s crystal. We’ll show you the steps for buffing out scratches from your watch’s crystal at home.

Why is polishing a watch bad?

It’s often advised that you don’t polish your watch. As most watches are made up of different elements. And not all these elements are polished. Some are brushed elements. 

Therefore, if you polished these elements you could polish away the original style and shape of your original watch. 

You could ruin the original architecture of your watch, by rounding out sharp lines, losing the original case shape.

Learn more about why it is bad to polish your watch in our guide.


Caring for a watch involves knowing exactly how your watch needs to be cared for. The more research you do the better.

However, it’s best not to obsess over watch scratches and stress over how to not scratch your watch.

Instead just follow these simple tips and do your best to keep your watch safe. Accidents do happen, so just learn how to deal with them when they do.

Check out our other watch guides on how care your watch: