Round cases are the most common form found among watches. However, square watches have their fans too, beloved for their distinct angular shape and off-beat personality. Square wristwatches have been in existence for more than a century and they continue to be a popular type of shaped timepiece. In fact, judging by all the square watches popping up in the catalogs of various watch brands, we’d say that they’re attracting even more attention nowadays.
If you’re interested in adding one to your collection, here are nine top square watches to consider, ranging in price from $20 to just under $8,000.
It’s been around since 1989 and it’s the world’s most-sold watch – many of you probably own one or at least, did so when you were a teen. It offers a slew of functions (1/100-second stopwatch, alarm, auto calendar, and more), sports a square case (38.2 × 35.2 × 8.5mm), includes a micro-light for in-the-dark reading, boasts a 7-year battery life and best of all, costs about $20! We’re talking of course about the legendary Casio F-91W digital watch.
You can go classic with the almost all-black resin F-91W with a touch of blue, red, and white or opt for different variants including colorful ones (F-91WC), metallic ones (F-91WM), or even, translucent ones (F91WS).
Also made by Casio but belonging to the G-Shock series, think of this as the tougher square watch cousin. The first G-Shock watch that debuted in 1983 was the square-shaped DW-5000C, and it and its successors remain one of the most famous square digital watches in the market.
Today, G-Shock offers the 5000/5600 Series of square watches, all of which pay tribute to that inaugural model. One example is the G-Shock DW5600E-1V, a reference Casio launched in 1996, featuring an all-plastic casing with a metal caseback. Almost thirty years later, that model is still in production, illustrating the popularity of this square watch. This 200m-water-resistant square digital multi-function watch (measuring 48.9 × 42.8 × 13.4 mm) includes a 1/100-second stopwatch, a countdown timer, a multi-function alarm, full auto-calendar to year 2099, among others. Plus, it costs well under $100!
CIGA Design Mechanical Watch Series X Gorilla
Price: Starting at $379
Award-winning Chinese watch brand, CIGA Design, is making waves in the watch landscape with its collection of boldly designed mechanical watches. Take, for instance, the steel and titanium CIGA Design Series X Gorilla square watch, which measures a generous 44mm x 48. The watch not only features an open-worked dial and movement for a clear view of the automatic movement inside but is also available in a multitude of colorways.
Priced at less than $400, this brash square watch is, according to CIGA design, inspired by a muscular gorilla, and each piece is paired with an intricately patterned silicone strap.
March L.A.B. AM2 Slim Automatic Shelter
March L.A.B is on a quest to make its watches “as French as possible,” and the watch brand offers a large collection of chic timepieces. One particularly handsome collection is the AM2 Slim Automatic, offering retro-styled 36mm square watches with a winding crown at 4 o’clock.
With its angular steel case silhouette, rounded square sapphire crystal, stepped dial, and five-link steel integrated bracelet, the March L.A.B. AM2 Slim Automatic is unabashedly seventies-inspired. The Shelter variant, which includes a striking two-toned dial, leans into the groovy vibe, and like all other models in the collection, it runs on an automatic movement.
Rado True Square Automatic Open Heart
Rado has long been a pioneer in ceramic watches and made its mark in the watch industry by making ceramic square watches (called Ceramica) as early as 1990. Fast forward to today, and Rado’s signature ceramic square watch is now the True Square, launched in 2020. The True Square is not only the first Rado watch with a square, injection-molded monobloc high-tech ceramic case, but an industry first.
The collection is a varied one with plenty of sizes, dial executions, and colorways to choose from. One of our top picks is the True Square Automatic Open Heart with a 38mm ceramic case and ceramic bracelet, rendered in a gunmetal metallic hue. The skeletonized dial is accented with royal blue details and gives us a look at the open-worked movement inside.
NOMOS Glashütte Tetra Neomatik 39 Silvercut
The Tetra collection is home to NOMOS Glashütte’s square watches, complete with the clean minimalist style that the German watchmaker is known for.
Among them, the Tetra Neomatik 39 Silvercut is an especially appealing square watch, featuring a steel case (that measures 46mm diagonally), an in-house automatic ultra-thin movement, a polished silver-gray, and a black leather strap. The blue center hour and minute hands coupled with a red seconds hand on the subdial at 6 o’clock is a fun touch, as is the horizontal brushing of the gray dial.
Bell & Ross BR 03 Auto Black Matte
Bold square watches are what put Bell & Ross on the map and the brand has continued to favor this silhouette. The new Bell & Ross BR03 Auto collection carries on the legacy of the aircraft cockpit-inspired BR 03 model that first appeared in 2006 by retaining the signature “circle in a square with four screws” design blueprint but now in a more compact 41mm size.
The hero of the new collection is the BR 03 Auto Black Matte, dressed in a micro-blasted black ceramic case paired with a black rubber strap (an additional black fabric strap is also provided). The black dial is very much in line with the Bell & Ross aesthetic, featuring oversized numerals at 3, 6, 9, and 12, coupled with prominent luminous hands at the center.
TAG Heuer Monaco
The Heuer Monaco was born in 1969 as the world’s first water-resistant square watch, and it boasted one of the world’s first automatic chronograph movements too. It became world famous when it was worn by Steve McQueen in the Le Mans movie in 1971 and the Monaco continues to be a mainstay of TAG Heuer’s catalog today.
With its shimmering sunburst blue dial, silver counters, and red hands, the dial of the modern TAG Heuer Monaco ref. CBL2111.FC6453 is a faithful rendition of the original Steve McQueen model. That dial is housed inside a 39mm stainless steel square case, topped with domed sapphire crystal. Finishing off the look is a blue alligator strap.
Santos de Cartier Automatic
The Cartier Santos is the original square watch, designed by Louis Cartier in 1904 at the request of pilot Alberto Santos-Dumont. Santos-Dumont didn’t want to deal with a cumbersome pocket watch while flying across the skies in his pioneering aircraft, so Louis Cartier had the idea to create a watch he could wear on his wrist instead.
Well over a century later, the Santos is one of Cartier’s most prized watches, maintaining that signature square case shape and exposed screws on the square bezel. While the Santos de Cartier collection is an expansive one, home to plenty of material, size, and color choices, the full stainless steel Santos ref. WSSA0018 is especially popular. Its case measures 39.8mm and is furnished with a classic silvered opaline dial with the customary blue sword-shaped hands and black Roman numerals. The matching steel bracelet is famously embellished with exposed screws and benefits from Cartier’s “QuickSwitch” interchangeability system for easy strap switching.
There you have it – some of the best square watches you can buy today. What do you think of square watches? Do you appreciate their designs or do you prefer the more classic round watch? Are there any other square watches you’d add to our list? Drop us a note in the comments below to share your thoughts.