Best Apple Watch Bands for Working Out

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The first design of the Apple Watch was released in 2015 and quickly became the new must have electronic for a lot of people. Whether you wanted to track your exercise, sleep or to simply have a smaller phone stuck to your arm all day, most people wanted to get their hands on this shiny new product.

Since the release, Apple has designed a total of six series of Apple Watches, five of which have been released to the public. They are all similar in look with a square screen and a strap that can be detached and swapped in for another one. 

The Apple Watches are all excellent working out companions as they have a number of features to help you keep track of your activity and fitness. Let’s take the 2018 Apple Watch Series 5 for example, throughout the day it will tell you how many calories you burned, how much active exercise you’ve completed, as well as reminding you to get up and move once an hour. It can track 12 different workouts, such as running, yoga and HIIT, as well as automatically detect when you’re exercising. You can then see your heart rate while in the middle of your workout.

Smart watches tend to come with basic straps that can rub and chafe during a workout, so it is super helpful that the Apple Watch bands are easily replaceable. There are a number of watch bands on the market specifically designed to wear while exercising, and below we’ll be looking at the best five options so that you never have to deal with a sore wrist again.

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Our Pick

There are many different types of watch bands for Apple Watches, however only some are designed specifically for sports and exercise. After some extensive research and a deep dive into the world of watch bands, we’ve come up with a sound list of the top five that the market has to offer. Having said that, there can only be one winner and that is the Apple Watch Sport Loop. Not only will this design get you motivated and keep you smashing your goals, you’ll also look fashionable doing so. Here are just a few reasons why we’ve chosen this as our favorite Apple Watch band for working out: 

  • It’s made of double layered nylon which is soft, durable and breathable.

  • Apple is a trusted brand. 

  • It is infinitely adjustable so you can get the perfect size for your wrist.

Best Apple Watch Bands for Working Out - Comparison Table

Best Apple Watch Bands for Working Out - Reviews

We had to start this list off with Apple’s own Sport Loop, didn’t we? This band is made from a doubled up layer of nylon weave. Instead of a metal clasp to keep the watch firmly around your wrist, there is a hook-and-loop fastener to ensure easy adjustments during your workout. You can attach the Sport Loop to any series of the Apple Watch as long as it is the correct size of watchface, so make sure you choose the right size before purchasing. 

On the side of the band that comes into contact with your skin, there are dense loops which makes it more comfortable for you to wear. No one wants a watch band that you have to keep scratching underneath or pulling to adjust because it’s too uncomfortable, so this design from Apple is welcomed with open arms. Moreover, this loop design on the inside of the watch strap makes the band more breathable as there are small gaps for the air to flow through, allowing your wrist to keep cool and not remain sweaty for too long. 

The loop design makes it infinitely adjustable so gone are the days of having to choose between a strap hole which is slightly too big, and another which is slightly too small. You can choose from 15 different designs for the Apple Watch Sport Loop, most of which are not just a simple block color. If you’re in the market for a more interesting looking watch band, this design may be the way to go.

Pros

  • Very comfortable material used.
  • The band is easy to put on and adjust.
  • Lightweight and durable design. 

Cons

  • Higher price point than alternatives on our list.
  • The fabric is prone to getting dirty quickly, and the band is difficult to clean.

Next up is the AdMaster Sport Band, a soft and tough watch band made of high quality silicone material. The band features three rows of holes to encourage a steady flow of cool air circulating around your skin throughout the day and your workout, so the amount of sweat that collects there should be minimal. If all goes well and the watch band is the correct fit for your wrist - not too loose but not too tight - you should be barely able to feel the watch on at all. 

The watch band secures around your wrist with a stainless steel clasp to avoid it coming loose or falling off. Your Apple Watch remaining flush against your skin ensures your readings are accurate, so it’s important that the clasp is of high quality. AdMaster seems to know this and put measures in place to prevent it occuring. 

You can choose between two sizes for this watch band to come in so that it is compatible with the correct series of Apple Watch that you own. It’s unlikely that the wrong size band will fit with your watch face, so make sure you measure it correctly before purchasing. 

AdMaster has designed their Sport Band to be durable and tough enough to wear everyday, however if you encounter any problems with it they offer a one year warranty to prevent you losing any money. There are 13 colors for you to choose from, so make sure you choose your favorite!

Pros

  • Breathable design which is also very durable.
  • Stainless steel metal clasp to avoid inaccurate readings or uncomfortability.

  • One year warranty and good customer service.

Cons

  • Metal may rust if not dried after use.
  • Some customers have found that their band connectors are defective.

Bandiction has created their sports band to be of a different and unique shape as opposed to all the other designs on our list. As you can see, the silicone band is actually much thinner than a regular Apple Watch strap and Bandiction states that this is to make the band more breathable. Of course a thinner strap is going to be of a lighter weight and there’s less material touching your wrist, which stands to reason that there would be less chance of irritation occurring. They also say that they’ve designed it to be narrower as this makes your wrist look slimmer, so if you’re particularly self conscious about the size of your wrist, perhaps this is the way to go. 

The metal parts of this sports band are all made of hypoallergenic stainless steel which should prevent you from experiencing any adverse effects from low quality materials. The band has large watch lugs on the attaching ends which prevent the band coming loose once it’s attached to your watch face, giving you peace of mind that your expensive Apple Watch won’t go flying off into the distance after one forward punch. 

You can choose to purchase this slim watch band in 19 different colours, some muted and pastel, some bright and eye catching. You can also opt for a pack of three if you’re someone who likes to switch up their look a lot.

Pros

  • Unique design to prevent irritation and sweat build up.
  • Hypoallergenic materials used. 

  • A variety of colors to choose from to fit your style.

Cons

  • The watch latch isn’t the most effective.
  • Colors may slightly vary from the images shown.

Another Apple product to feature on our list is their Sport Band, which is made of fluoroelastomer, a dense yet soft material that fits to the individual shape of your wrist excellently and therefore allows you to forget it is even there. The band is a simple block design with only the holes to fit the clasp through. The clasp is not all it seems, however as it is actually a pin-and-tuck design which takes away the bulky metal loop that is often found on watch bands, as this is just another feature that could cause skin irritation while exercising. 

As Apple designed their Sport Band to go with their own Apple watch face, you get a pretty good inkling that this is going to be an ideal fit and that the watch face isn’t going to have any issues staying attached to the band. This is obviously a desirable feature as no one wants their very expensive watch flying off into the distance. 

The Apple Watch Sport Band comes in a variety of different sizes to ensure you get your perfect fit. Make sure that you check the size of your Apple Watch to get the correct sized strap to avoid disappointment, and choose your favorite color out of the 19 fashionable watches.

Pros

  • Highly renowned and trusted brand.
  • Made from durable material. 

  • No bulky clasp that may get caught on clothing during exercise.

Cons

  • High price point.
  • Colors may vary from the images online.

Finally we have ilopee’s version of its own sports band, which is made of silicone with three rows of breathable holes down the whole strap. The silicone is lightweight and flexible so can adjust to the shape of your wrist without being uncomfortable - the aim is to not feel the watch on at all! This watch band is compatible with all series of the Apple Watch as you can choose which size of watch face you have when purchasing, so don’t worry about it not fitting. 

Although the silicone material is comfortable and soft on your skin, don’t be fooled into thinking it isn’t a badass band with an insane amount of durability. You can wear this watch strap over and over again, and even wash it after a particularly sweaty session. Sweat that finds itself under this band will be evaporated away thanks to the many holes ready to air it out, so chafing will be a thing of the past. 

You can also take this band into the water with you so you can track your swimming pace. It comes in 16 different colors to choose from, and you can even get a pack of three so you can coordinate your watch band with your outfit. This watch strap only takes five seconds to attach to your Apple Watch, so what are you waiting for?

Pros

  • Comfortable material that is also durable.
  • Great low price. 

  • Comes in different sizes to be compatible with all Apple Watch series.

Cons

  • Metal on the band may not be of the highest quality.
  • The fit of the band can be a little hit or miss for some customers.

Best Apple Watch Bands for Working Out - Buyers Guide

Material 

The material of your watch band is very important when it comes to working out and exercise, as some are bound to be better than others at dealing with sweat, chafing, and discomfort. Below we’ll look at a few of the most popular materials that your watch band could be made from: 

Silicone

Perhaps the most commonly used material is silicone as it is waterproof, reliable and flexible so it can adapt to your wrists movements as you exercise. Some upper body workouts may cause your wrists to swell and silicone can adapt to this without you having to do anything, which is a nice benefit. Silicone products are also usually affordable so your silicone strap may be cheaper than other alternatives. 

Fluoroelastomer 

This material is featured on the Apple Watch Sport Band and is a type of synthetic rubber. It is considered to be similar in weight and feel to silicone, however it is more durable so you may find that fluoroelastomer is a better choice to go for if you’re going to be wearing your sport band on a regular basis. 

Fabric

Fabric isn’t considered the most obvious choice for sport bands as it often collects sweat and becomes damp, making it more likely to irritate your skin. However, there are some brands who make fabric watch bands that are breathable enough to be used during low to moderate intensity sports. As these are more likely to absorb your sweat, they often get dirtier quickly, so bear this in mind. 

Watch Face Size

There are five different series of the Apple Watch that you can purchase at the moment, and each of these come in different sizes. This means that your watch strap is going to differ in size depending on which size face you have. How annoying is it when you order a phone case and it turns out that you chose the wrong size and now the case is much smaller than your actual phone? This is exactly what it feels like to purchase the wrong band size, so make sure you check your Apple Watch before purchasing your band. 

Brand

The brand of your watch band may prove important when it comes to the reliability of your chosen strap. Apple’s own straps come with a warranty in case they falter while in use, whereas some other brands do not offer this. However, there are also some brands that do offer warranty protection and their designs are a fraction of the price of what Apple is charging for their designs. We’d advise you to read the customer reviews before committing to a purchase so you have a clearer idea of what the brand is like. Key points to look out for are good customer service, a decent warranty and whether or not the advert is an accurate description of the product. 

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I ensure my Apple watch band doesn't smell?

Apple watch bands tend to smell if not washed correctly often, as bacteria is able to build up around the strap. To wash your band, use a tiny bit of soap and water to saturate the band and massage it into a lather. After you’ve done this for a few minutes you should rinse until all the soap has gone and leave to dry. If the smell hasn’t gone by the time it has dried, soak it in warm water and soap overnight for a deeper clean. 

What is the best Apple Watch band for swimming?

As the Apple Watch itself is waterproof, you can really use any compatible watch band that is made from waterproof material for swimming. Apple’s own Sport Band is a great choice since it’s made of fluoroelastomer, however designs made from silicone are also excellent choices. Just make sure you dry the watch and strap thoroughly after using to prevent premature wearing. 

Which designers make Apple Watch bands? 

Hermès is the most popular designer to make Apple Watch bands, however you can get a number of designer inspired bands online. These mimics the patterns of designers such as Gucci, Louis Vuitton and Burberry.

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