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How to Measure Your Wrist to Choose the Right Watch Dial Size

Written by Anna Currell
August 24, 2023

When you’re searching for a new watch, you’ve got all kinds of decisions to make — will it be a luxury timepiece or a smart watch? What type of strap will you choose? Will you opt for a functional piece or are you more focused on aesthetics? One factor you might forget to consider while you’re shopping is which watch dial size to choose. If you’re not sure how to find the perfect dial size, you’ve come to the right place. In this article, we’ll walk you through everything you need to know about measuring your wrist and selecting the best watch dial size for you. 

All About Your Watch Dial Size 

“What’s a watch dial size,” you ask? Watch dial size refers to the diameter of the circular area on the front of a watch — the part that displays the time. Dial size is commonly measured in millimeters (mm), indicating the width of the dial from one edge to the other across the widest point. Although it’s not always considered a priority, dial size is an important consideration when choosing a watch because it affects the piece’s overall aesthetics, comfort, and functionality. Different dial sizes will satisfy various preferences, trends, and wrist sizes, so understanding how these components interact will help you find the best fit for your unique needs. 


How to Measure Your Wrist

The main factor that will influence the perfect watch dial size for you is your wrist size. Especially if you’re buying a watch online and you can’t try it on first, one of the best ways to ensure that you’re getting the right watch dial size is to use your wrist measurements as a starting point. 

So how do you measure your wrist? There are a couple different ways you can measure your wrist based on the materials you have available. Here are two options:

Method #1: Flexible measuring tape

If you have a flexible measuring tape tucked away in your tool box or desk drawer, you can use it to measure your wrist quickly and easily. Follow these simple steps:

  1. Hold one end of the measuring tape in place against your wrist.
  2. Wrap the rest of the measuring tape around your wrist.
  3. The number on the measuring tape at the point where it overlaps on itself is your wrist size.

Option 2: Ruler, paper, and a pen

If you don’t have flexible measuring tape, you can use a ruler, a piece of paper, and a pen to measure your wrist. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Wrap a piece (or a strip) of paper around your wrist.
  2. Use a pen to mark the place where the two ends of the paper meet.
  3. Unwrap the paper from your wrist and lay it down on a flat surface.
  4. Use the ruler to measure from the edge of the paper to the mark you made. This length is your wrist size. 

Deciding the Right Size for You

After you’ve measured your wrist, you can begin to assess which size watch you prefer. While everyone’s preferences are different, here are some standard recommendations for how to combine your wrist size with watch dial size for a good-looking fit:

  • Small to medium-sized wrists: If your wrist measures between 5.5 inches (14 cm) and 7 inches (18 cm), try a watch dial size between 38-42 mm. 
  • Medium to large-sized wrists: If your wrist measures between 7 inches (18 cm) and 8 inches (20 cm), a watch dial size between 42-46 mm will work well.
  • Larger wrists: If your wrist measures more than 8 inches (20 cm) around, you might consider a watch dial with a diameter of 46 mm or more.

Of course, these are only suggestions to get you started. You should select whichever watch dial size feels best and gets you the look you’re going for. We recommend trying on watches with a few different dial sizes to get a sense of what is most comfortable, what you like, and how well you can read the time and other functions on your watch. If you’re shopping online, try ordering a few options to compare. It can also be helpful to try on different options in a brick and mortar store before you buy online. Or you can ask your watch-wearing friends and family to try theirs on for size. 


Once you’ve selected the watch dial size that works best for you, don't forget to take great care of it. Get your watch battery replaced, tighten up your watch strap, or get a full overhaul service thanks to our team of experts at Quick Jewelry Repairs.

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