Watches are statements of intent, a fashion piece that can make the drabbest of outfits drip with style and swagger. That is, if you could afford a good watch. As much as you’d love to buy watches advertised by smirking Formula One drivers and tennis players, the price tags meant they were the preserve of the mega-rich.
And, while that's still true of proper mechanical timepieces, you can still pick up a respectable, fashionable Quartz watch without breaking the bank.
Here are some amazing watches you can pick up for less than £200.
If you're really looking to spend big bucks, you can read our guide to the 5 best watches to invest in right now.
The best watches under £200 watches to buy today
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Who said you can't get a Swiss-made watch for under £200? It's no compromises as well, because this affordable Swiss watch is actually attractive as well. Based on the iconic design of the Swiss Railway Station clock, it's easy to read and stylish. The polished stainless steel case is waterproof to three bar, and the crystal glass covering the face is domed for a magnifying effect.
This Casio G-Shock really is the ultimate beater watch. You can strap it on a completely forget about it, whatever you’re doing. It’s sets the standard when it comes to toughness, and we love this understated ‘Black Out’ colourway. It comes with a Cordura nylon fabric band that is stronger than nylon, whist also providing extremely high resistance to stretching, wear, and tearing.
If you're just getting into photography (or you're trying to get someone into photography), this could be the ideal watch. It's a stylish quartz piece from legendary Swiss brand, Tissot. It features a timeless design, with a sleep, clean, classic face. We adore the interesting 'beads of rice' bracelet it comes on.
This Oxford watch from Rotary is ideal if you're looking for a classic, everyday dress watch. The perfectly balanced black dial is complemented by a soft calf leather strap. Want to know how else wears a Rotary watch? You'll see one strapped to the wrist of Benedict Cumberbatch's Sherlock Holmes
If you need something that can take a bashing - look no further than G Shock. This affordable model is looks great, with both the case and strap made from matt green resin, and the lens featuring protective mineral glass. This surmounts to a watch which is submersible to 200 metres and is pretty much explosion proof.
If you have desires to join the SAS, or become a survival expert like Bear Grylls, buying this watch is the first step on that journey. Just slipping it on will make you feel more extreme. The piece also packs in number features, including multiple timezones, a stopwatch, timer and five alarms - so you can wake up in time for your mission, then time how long it takes to take out a terrorist cell.
The Timex Expedition Scout is an attractive, lightweight piece which has a rugged, outdoorsy aesthetic to it. The easy-to-read face features Timex's brilliant Indiglo night-light. The model range is derived from the virtually indestructible 1960s infantry watches and adapted to meet the explosive growth of outdoor activities in the 1990s.
Looking for a budget watch with plenty o’ tech? The Citizen EcoDrive Dive watch is for you. It’s powered by Citizen brilliant EcoDrive technology, which harnesses power from any light source (even artificial lighting) to keep ticking all day long (with a 7 year power reserve).
Honestly, you’ll never need to change a watch battery again. This is a functional piece as well, with features including a screw-down crown and screw-back case, luminous markers, one-way rotating slide rule bezel and highly-legible dials, it’s a true Divers watch.
Timex has recently released a limited-edition collection of vintage-inspired watches, in partnership with Coca-Cola. The capsule collection brings together two iconic American brands to demonstrate a message of tolerance and hope. The collection is designed to inspire watch-wearers around the world to make time for what matters, that is, as long as they prefer Coke to Pepsi…
The commemorative styles created celebrate Coca-Cola’s 1971 “Hilltop” commercial and the unity message it portrays. Our pick of the bunch is the digital Timex T80, which combines vibrant colours and a feeling of whimsy to the design. It also plays the iconic “Hilltop” commercial song: “I’d Like to Teach the World to Sing (in Perfect Harmony)”.
You can buy the limited edition Timex x Coca-Cola watches here (opens in new tab).
This large Fossil watch features a bold, all-black design, with black case, matt black dial, and, black indices. The large 43mm stainless steel case certainly makes a statement, and is water resistant to 5 ATM. It's finished with a black waxed-leather strap.
Paul Smith, one of Britain's most well-known designers, is renowned for his colourful aesthetic which is evident in this stunning, Blue 'Tempo' watch. The dial is housed in an attractive 41mm stainless steel case, and finished with a black leather strap with pin buckle clasp, and mineral crystal glass.
Think budget watch and the first brand than comes to mind is probably Swatch. It's one of the biggest watch brands out there. The Sistem Fly from the iconic Swiss brand isn't your typical plastic affair either, it's made from stainless steel and fitted with a brown leather strap. Hidden underneath the beautiful blue dial isn't your typical Quartz movement, the Sistem is fitted with an analogue automatic movement with date function. That's very impressive for a watch that costs less than £200.
If you're looking for something iconic, look no further than this timepiece from Braun. The company's minimalist, clean aesthetic, was introduced by renowned German designer Dieter Rams, was built around the brand ethos - less, but better.
Rams and his colleague Dietrich Lubs launched a range of functional timepieces based on the established visual language that made Braun products iconic. In recent years this range has been re-established and revived, so you can now buy a piece of design history for under £200.
The Michael Kors Mens Bryson watch showcases a beautiful 42mm stainless steel case with scratch resistant mineral glass and a stunning dial featuring baton hour markers and protected by a fixed set bezel. Other features include an elegant Leather strap, a reliable movement, and a secure pin-buckle clasp for added protection.
The Connected hybrid smartwatch boasts a range of smart features in the body of a classic watch. By connecting to your Android or iPhone and the Skagen app, the watch sends discreet, filtered by you smartphone notifications when you receive a text, email or call. It automatically updates to the correct time and date, and runs on a standard replaceable CR2430 coin cell battery. Additional features include: activity and sleep tracking, phone finder, music control and more. The strap can be easily interchanged with other 20mm straps.
Skagen is a Danish watch company. It’s worth mentioning that Skagen is Danish (in case the name didn’t give it away) because their watches have all the hallmarks of Scandinavian design – minimal aesthetics, a streak of retro, and a cool font.
It doesn’t look like it costs a million dollars but this watch proves that they don’t have to have premium looks to leave a lasting impression. The slick design does all the work here and will ensure you keep running your hands through your hair/yawning and stretching your arms out/waving your wrist around to make sure your present company gets a good look at your time piece.
This analogue timepiece is even capable of counting your steps and sycning with your phone. Not bad, eh?
Seiko has been known for precision, reliability and excellence since 1881, so just because this piece is inexpensive, don't think it's not a well-made watch. It's the everyman's Rolex, if you will. This particular model features a sporty face and chronograph movement. The bezel rotates, and most importantly of all, it's waterproof to 100 metres.
If you like to stand out, this square(ish) watch from Kartel will help you do it. We love the combination of the black dial and stainless steel case. The piece measures 38mm, so it suited to both male and female wrists. It's made from stainless steel, and is fitted with a reliable quartz movement.
his Mens Casio timepiece from the Edifice collection epitomises true Casio inspired aesthetics. It's an outstanding analogue watch for its price, part of the Edifice collection, which is engineered by Casio. This wrist watch features a sporty stainless steel case and bracelet, and it combined with a black carbon fibre effect dial and reliable Quartz movement.
If you're looking for a classic, understated watch to wear with a suit, look no further than this classy dress watch from Hugo Boss. The sleek black dial features roman numerals and is powered by a Quartz movement. It's worn on a black leather pin buckle strap.
If you thought Guess only make jeans, you'd be wrong – they also make stylish watches – such as this stunning Hendrix model. It's a sleek and sophisticated timepiece with a monochrome design and a 44mm polished case. The silver multi-function dial features bold roman numeral markers, guilloche subdials with super-useful day, date and 24hr displays. A coordinating stainless steel bracelet completes the look.
If you want something big and show-off-y, but don't have several grand to blow on a Hublot, this piece from designer Michael Kors should do the trick. The luxury watch not only looks good, but also provides maximum functionality with a clear chronograph movement and date window at 6 o'clock. The chunky 48mm rose gold case is water resistant to 10 ATM, and attaches to a comfortable black silicon strap.
And finally, if you’re looking for a budget timepiece, there really is nothing more affordable than the Casio digital watch. Sure, it’s not the last word in sophistication, but the design is iconic and perfect if you're going for a retro/hipster vibe. As well as telling the time, the Casio features an alarm, calendar and stopwatch.
It’s pretty much an Apple Watch. There’s a backlight, for telling time in the dark, and the acrylic window is shatter-resistant, so it’ll probably last longer than you will. All for under £10? That’s a steal, and everyone should have one, quite frankly.