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The Dawn of Sustainable Watches, 6 Outstanding Eco-Friendly Watch Brands

February 17, 2023 6 min read

Ulysse Nardin Ocean Race Diver, the first diver watch constructed by using upcycled fishing nets

Feeling the pulse of the customers before releasing a new collection or model is what renowned watchmakers continually undergo. Given our environment's state, learning about people's growing concern for the environment and their urge for sustainable and eco-friendly watches came as no surprise.

The idea received a warm welcome. A number of watchmakers have already recognized the urgency of the cause and started working on implementing environmentally friendly and sustainable features. Knowing that’s one of the hottest topics among their fans secured them in their efforts. As a result, there is a growing selection of eco-friendly watches.

The six featured today are some of the best examples of how sustainability, ecology, and great design can go hand in hand.

 

Ulysse Nardin Ocean Race Diver

This luxurious watch is a joint effort of Ulysse Nardin and The Ocean Race. The two brands are renowned for their close connection with the ocean, which makes this collaboration perfectly natural. The idea behind it is to emphasize it was high time for everyone to act in the best interest of ocean preservation.

The result is the first diver watch made using sustainable materials. Particularly notable here is the use of upcycled fishing net material. The fishing net is a grave source of ocean plastic pollution, and finding a way to put it to eco-friendly use is of great significance.

Ulysse Nardin Ocean Race Diver, the first diver watch constructed by using upcycled fishing nets

Ulysse Nardin Ocean Race Diver, the first diver watch constructed by using upcycled fishing nets

The 44mm outer case, lugs, caseback, and mid-case material is a combo: 60% is recycled fishing nets (NYLO), and 40% is Carbonium. The unidirectional bezel is 85% recycled stainless steel, while Carbonium, which is 40% less polluting than traditional carbon, is used for the bezel insert.

The watch strap is a 100% recycled fishing net. Finally, this lovely 300m water-resistant diver watch comes packed in an R-PET dry bag made of recycled plastic retrieved from the ocean.

 

Breitling Superocean Heritage II Chronograph 44 'Ocean Conservancy' Limited Edition

Here's another impactful cooperation between two respected names. Famous Swiss watchmakers Breitling teamed with the Ocean Conservancy organization to make an impact in a mutual battle against ocean pollution. The fruit of that cooperation is a 1000-piece limited edition of Breitling The Superocean Heritage Ocean Conservancy Chronograph.

Breitling Superocean Heritage II Chronograph 44 Ocean Conservancy

Breitling Superocean Heritage II Chronograph 44 'Ocean
Conservancy'

Breitling watch strap Submersible ECONYL yarn

The material used for the Breitling watch strap is ECONYL
® yarn

The dominant blue and silver details portray a clear homage to the beauty of a healthy ocean. Other features give additional push to their ocean preservation efforts. Namely, the material used for the watch strap is ECONYL ® yarn. That revolutionary material comes from recycled nylon waste, mainly one found in oceans worldwide.

Moreover, the watch comes in a special box of fully recyclable materials. To complete the eco-friendly package, this extraordinary watch was launched on a beach in Bali. The host and their guests organized a beach and shoreline garbage removal action for the occasion—an excellent lead-by-example move.

 

Luminox Bear Grylls Survival Master series

Now, there are two familiar names here. Luminox, a US watch company well known for their action-inspired collection, and Bear Grylls, the first association to outdoor adventure and survival to people worldwide.

Luminox Bear Grylls Survival Master series make use of a new upcycle plastic material

Luminox Bear Grylls Survival Master series make use of a new upcycle plastic material in the watch case and strap

Survival Master is a special watch and a successful answer of Luminox craftsmen to the challenge Bear Grylls put in front of them: to make use of a new upcycle plastic material in the watch case and strap manufacturing process. What's so special about that material?

That's where the third name comes to play in this collaboration, Tide Ocean SA. They are the force behind #TIDE Recycled Ocean Material, a 100% ocean-bound material gathered off the coast of Thailand in a continual effort to reduce the quantity of plastic present in the oceans.

With a noble cause behind its design, bearing a famous name, and having an affordable price of a fraction over 1000$, there's high hope Luminox Bear Grylls Survival Master will reach a broad audience. And, consequently, make an impact in raising awareness of the importance of immediate action toward ocean preservation.

 

Oris Aquis Date Upcycle

Oris is one of the watchmaking companies that has long been committed to the promotion of sustainability, as well as ocean preservation. The Swiss watchmakers partnered with Everwave to reduce the presence and influence of plastic in the oceans. The 2021 addition to their Aquis collection - Oris Aquis Date Upcycle - takes their eco-friendly orientation to a whole new level.

Oris Aquis Date Upcycle, a watch with a unique dial made of recycled PET

Oris Aquis Date Upcycle, a watch with a unique dial made of recycled PET, no two dials are exactly the same

The most prominent feature when helping ocean recovery is concerned is the use of PET plastics as a dial material. Thanks to the PET plastic recycling process, each dial produced is original in pattern and color combination. That makes all the watches from the collection unique in appearance, regardless if they come in a 41.5 mm or 36.5 mm stainless steel case size.

Both Upscale models come in special boxes of upcycled #tide ocean plastic. Oris owners promised that those watches would remain in production as long as there's an interest in them. So hopefully, the impact they're trying to make with these remarkable pieces will be recognized and long-lived.

 

Panerai Submersible Mike Horn' Edition EcoTitanium and Luminor Marina eSteel

Here's another exceptional professional diver's watch. Panerai and Mike Horn, an infamous polar adventurer, have been in close cooperation for more than 15 years, and PAM00985 is the pinnacle of their relationship. Both have been known for their keen interest in nature preservation, and with PAM00985, they are making a truly unique statement.

Panerai Mike Horn PAM00985 EcoTitanium sustainable material

Panerai Mike Horn PAM00985 is crafted from namely 80 grams of EcoTitanium

The case, the beautifully engraved caseback, the bezel, and crown protecting device are exclusively made of ECOTITANIUM™. That's Panerai's own material, an eco-friendly titanium alloy containing more than 80 percent recycled content. In addition, the watch strap on this limited edition watch is entirely made of recycled plastic to make an even more substantial environmental protection impact.

The special features of this great diver don't end there. That exclusive model, limited to only 19 pieces, comes with an once-in-a-lifetime experience. The lucky owners of PAM00985 will have an opportunity to join Mike Horn on a unique exploration expedition of the Poles.

2022 new release Panerai Luminor Marina eSteel

2022 new release Panerai Luminor Marina eSteel represents a new, responsible, and sustainable face to watchmaking : eSteel Bezel, Nylon Recycled PET Bracelet, 44 mm eSteel Case

Such a unique journey will enable the owners to witness firsthand the beauty of those remarkable corners of our world and the grave danger they have been in for quite some time. And consequently spread the word on the importance of taking prompt action in helping nature recover.

 

Alpina Seastrong Gyre

Alpina is one of the watchmakers that drew their inspiration from nature and has always been proud of their collections dedicated to nature lovers and enjoyers. Their new Seastrong Gyre Diver collection, limited to 1,883 pieces, takes Alpina's nature admiration foundation a considerable step forward.

Alpina Seastrong Gyre watches are the result of a formidable team Alpina formed with Gyre Watch and Surfrider Foundation Europe. The former is a start-up aimed at sourcing recycled material. The latter is a non-governmental organization famous for its ongoing struggle for ocean preservation.

Alpina Seastrong Gyre used solely recycled plastic from the ocean for their production

Alpina Seastrong Gyre, engineers used solely recycled plastic from the ocean for their production

The Seastrong Gyre collection symbolically premiered on World Oceans Day on June 8th, 2020. Their most prominent contribution to the protection and conservation of the oceans are the innovative cases and straps that make the five watches from the collection stand out. Alpina engineers used solely recycled plastic from the ocean for their production, 70% Recycled PA and 30% glass fiber.

In addition, the unique blue-colored box the watches come in is made of recycled paper, recycled plastic, and rPET. On top of that, the sub 2000$ price makes it affordable to a broader range of potential buyers, thus expanding the collection's reach and spreading the message of ocean preservation importance.

Every little thing done to help nature preservation counts. Purchasing one of the watches or watch straps that leave an ecological footprint would be a great start. And the right message to watchmakers to keep up their eco-friendly approach.

 

Sustainable Watch Bands

Environmentally friendly products are market-oriented products that cause minimal environmental degradation and their production is linked to a product development process that is structured in a way that considers the impacts that can be caused to the environment throughout their life cycle.

Eco-friendly Watch Bands made from Sustainable Fabric

Sustainable Revive Watch Bands are an innovative design solution of vibrant textiles made from post-consumer recycled polyester (PET) such as used plastic bottles.

22mm Revive Sustainable Watch Bands paired with Jaeger LeCoultre Master Compressor

22mm Revive Sustainable Watch Band paired with Jaeger LeCoultre Master Compressor

A Pilot type sustainable watch band complemented the IWC Big pilot watch by Strapcode

Black mixed white, a Pilot type Sustainable Watch Band
complimented the IWC Big pilot watch

Sustainable Revive Watch Bands by Strapcode

3 color options: Black, Blue/Green, and Black /White,
available in lug sizes 20mm or 22mm

 SHOP Revive Watch Bands

 

External References:

 

Written by S.K., images by Toni and others as noted 

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