“Business Casual” is one of the most ambiguous terms in the world because it can mean everything from golf attire like khakis and a polo to the standard black pants and blue shirt you’ll find in every professional workplace. When it comes to your watch though, things are a little easier. As long as you keep your timepiece out of the realm of ostentatious, you’ll be fine. Here are some of our favorite business casual watches that won’t break the bank. They might even get you compliments from the higher-ups.
Aulta is a brand that was started with the message that “you don’t have to compromise your lifestyle based on your career choice,” and their watches are the perfect example of that. The Leeway has a 44mm surgical grade 316-L stainless case with a dial with minutes, hours, date, and dual eye chrono subdials all powered by a Miyota OS21 Japanese quartz movement. When it comes to band options, you get to choose between polyurethane, nylon and genuine leather—depending on how business or casual you want to get.$105
Seiko makes a lot of watches that could have ended up on this list, but their “business model” we like the most is the SARB065. It’s pricier than the Seiko 5 you should already own, but this watch, which is part of the Seiko Cocktail time collaboration with Japan’s top bartender, Mr. Ishigaki Shinobu, has an 6R15 23J Automatic movement with hand-winding and a hack function. The glass is Hardlex. The back is see-through. The band is a supple leather. This might just be the best dress watch you can buy for less than a grand, and that means it will pull double duty in the business casual workplace.$375
Combining gold accents on a silver face with a supple leather wristband is a surefire way to make a timepiece pop, but Komono takes business casual to the next level with the 4:00 crown and branding. It’s classy without being unapproachable, and the Japanese quartz powered timepiece comes in at a price level that everyone can consider affordable.$100
Shinola’s Detroit-made timepieces have been making waves since they were released, but The Brakeman, with its American-manufactured navy football leather watch strap and PVD rose gold plated stainless case will turn heads like none of their previous offerings. Inside the new, luxurious timepiece you’ll find the same Shinola quality movement in the form of a Detroit-built Argonite 705 quartz movement that’s hand-assembled from over 43 Swiss components.$625
The second highest funded fashion startup in Indiegogo history knows a thing or two about making a great watch at an affordable price. The Steel with Steel Bracelet model is similar to the graduation gift or heirloom piece you’ve probably already worn, but MVMT has a way of making something as simple as a Miyota Japanese quartz movement with date housed in a 45mm stainless case all the more special. It’s as unassuming as it is beautiful.$100