Skip to main content

The Manual may earn a commission when you buy through links on our site.

The 8 Best NATO Watch Straps for Men

Image used with permission by copyright holder

Originally designed for durability in the military in the 1970s, today, NATO watch straps serve a variety of purposes — including style. Most quality watch manufacturers allow and encourage you to change your band to fit the situation and your comfort. No matter what collection of straps you already have, a NATO strap or two should be part of that collection.

NATO straps are comfortable, and the unique construction prevents the metal from coming in contact with the skin. Investing in a well-made NATO strap will enhance and grow your collection. With our top choices for the best NATO watch straps, you’ll have one that fits your lifestyle and your personality. Let’s find the perfect one together.

Related Guides

Editor’s Choice: Omega 5-Strip NATO

Image used with permission by copyright holder

This Omega NATO strap features a thick black and gray stripe inspired by the Second World War styles. The stainless steel buckle and fitted keepers are long-lasting features while the tightly spaced holes ensure a perfect fit.

Polyamide material is ultra-durable and easy to wipe clean. It has a contemporary vibe that fits well with a range of watch styles — from your divers watch to the latest smartwatch. It’s a bigger investment, but you gain versatility and small luxe details.

$160 at Omega Watches

Best Budget Choice: Benchmark Basics NATO Strap

Image used with permission by copyright holder

Don’t be fooled by the price point. This durable NATO strap features a lightweight nylon weave that’s waterproof and snag resistant. Heat-sealed edges keep their shape while a range of sizing holes ensures a comfortable fit.

The keeper and buckle use stainless steel, and the band is fully washable, making upkeep easier. It’s available in four widths (18mm, 20mm, 22mm, and 24mm). The price gives you a chance for quantity — it’s available in multiple colors and styles — and you don’t have to remove the spring bars to install.

Best Rolex NATO Strap: Worn and Wound ADPT Strap

Image used with permission by copyright holder

Pair a NATO with your favorite Rolex? It’s not impossible. This small-batch strap features a simple military-inspired design with lightweight weaving. It stays on your wrist even if the spring bar fails, and the company sources and manufactures in the United States.

The company spares no detail. The strap features 316L stainless steel hardware with bonded nylon thread. A sewn-in label is comfortable and secure, while the shuttle loom material is tear and rip-resistant. It comes in several colors and three widths (18mm, 20mm, and 22mm).

$46 at Wind Up Watch Shop

Best Watch and Strap Combo: Hamilton Scuba NATO Strap Watch

Image used with permission by copyright holder

This statement watch from Hamilton upgrades your watch to a scuba compatible option. It features an easy-to-read watch face with a numeral bezel and quartz movement. It’s water-resistant to 100 meters, and the stainless steel housing and buckle are durable.

The bright blue NATO strap features lightweight, comfortable nylon weaving. It’s rip and fray resistant and features well-spaced attachment holes for a customized fit. The watch itself is 40mm, and the band width is 20mm. It’s an exciting addition to your watch collection or as a first official timepiece.

Best Thin Option: MZBUTIQ Classic NATO Strap

Image used with permission by copyright holder

If there’s nothing worse than a bulky watch strap, this option is the one for you. It features a classic NATO design using nylon that’s just 1.1mm thick. The stitching is securely sewn, not glued, and it fits straight lug-end watches.

Laser cutting provides a clean, rounded edge that won’t fray or tear while the hole spacing is suitable for a variety of sizes. It comes in over ten different widths and several different colors to suit your preferences. It flexes easily and holds your watch in place even in an emergency.

Best Seatbelt Style: PB Code Watch Strap

Image used with permission by copyright holder

Seatbelt style straps feature the smooth and shiny fabric reminiscent of seatbelts and the same tough as nails construction. It has a polished steel buckle and keeper, while the standard sizing fits most wrists. It’s suitable for diving and has excellent tensile strength.

It comes in four widths and quite a few color combinations. You’ll also receive all the tools you need to replace your strap. The sheen is unmistakable, giving you a slightly flashier option for your favorite watch.

Best Nylon Alternative: Barton Leather Nato Strap

Image used with permission by copyright holder

So you can’t quite get around the idea of woven nylon. This Nato inspired strap features a well-worn leather that ages well over time. The stitching is reinforced at critical points and has a 316 stainless steel buckle.

With hand-selected top leather and compatibility with many standard watch styles, this choice is a refined look for those of you who want a comfortable Nato style band but in soft leather. It comes in 18mm, 20mm, and 22mm widths and several colors of quality leather.

Best Military Option: MWC Ballistic Nato Strap

Image used with permission by copyright holder

MWC’s simple NATO strap is a two-piece choice using fast drying ballistic nylon and stainless steel fasteners. They’re easily washable and fit watch styles that require two pieces. The edges are heat sealed to keep their shape.

It’s a robust choice suitable for military contractors or civilian watch brands as well. It comes in a 20mm width, and the classic black blends with a variety of watch styles. Plus, with the simple installation and neutral coloring, you’ll be able to wear it from the office to the gym.

$14 from MWC Watches

Why Nato Straps Are Best

The military designed Nato straps to relieve soldiers of common complaints wearing standard watch straps out in the field. They offer a comfortable and safe alternative to traditional traps by using a loop to separate your skin from the hardware.

Plus, many Nato bands feature a safety mechanism that holds your watch in place if one of the spring pins happens to break. While the cheapest Nato bands feature the same construction and comfort, investing a little more into top-notch materials ensure nearly lifelong durability.

With the choices on our list, you have a wide range of options to fit your personality and style. These are excellent investments and will make wearing your favorite watch comfortable again.

Ty Gaskins
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Ty Gaskins is a Writer, Stylist, and Public Relations Professional based in New York City. Originally from Virginia Beach…
Class up your style: These are the best pocket watches for men
Our top picks for best pocket watches for men
Patek Philippe Grandmaster Chime Ref. 6300G-010 pocket watch

The best pocket watches for men are going to experience a resurgence in popularity soon, and you can jump on the trend ahead of time so you're able to tell everyone you were the one who started it. Why will pocket watches suddenly be on anyone and everyone? In September 2024, The Peaky Blinders Movie is confirmed to begin production. The hit TV series, set in the gritty backdrop of Birmingham after World War I, has become a massive cultural phenomenon, with a man who rocks copycat outfits on TikTok and even Peaky Blinders stores.

Taking inspiration from Mr. Thomas Shelby himself, the Peaky Blinders aesthetic has sparked renewed interest in finding the best pocket watches for men and for those wanting to give off an early 20th-century British gangster aesthetic. As more people seek to emulate their favorite characters from the cultural phenomenon, pocket watches will be trending very soon. If you're really looking to go all in and emulate your favorite Peaky Blinders character, a three-piece tweed suit and a long jacket will go a long way.
Best pocket watches for men: Our top picks

Read more
Go bold with yellow watches for men: Our top picks
Our top picks for yellow watches for men
Hublot Big Bang Unico Yellow Magic

Yellow watches for men are not for the faint-hearted, and you'll need some serious confidence if you're going to sport one of these eye-catchers on your wrist. With summer just around the corner, a yellow watch is the perfect accessory to brighten up your look, whether you're taking a stroll along the Italian Riviera or lounging at home with steaks on the grill. These citrus-hued watches, from the TAG Heuer Formula 1 to the Audemars Piguet Royal Oak Offshore Diver, stand out as a ray of sunshine amid the gloom of rainy spring days, making us dream of the warm breeze and blooming flowers in summer.

Yellow watches come in a hue that commands attention, that's for sure, which is why you see them on road signs and neon highlighters at school. With its inherent ability to captivate, either as a matte yellow or a more lustrous gold, the presence of a yellow dial on your watch will certainly draw attention.
Yellow watches for men: Our Top 5 picks

Read more
The 7 best Canada Goose vests for men in 2024
best canada goose vests for men vest

When it comes to expanding your wardrobe, it is important to step out of your comfort zone. For some men, that might mean opting for pieces of clothing that they normally wouldn't purchase and for others, that could mean trying out a new brand or type of apparel. If you're a guy that is in search of something new to add to your closet, there is nothing easier and more versatile than a new vest. Before you stop reading, let us explain to you why vests are an easy to wear item.

A vest is the perfect added layer to a hoodie, long sleeve shirt, button down or sweater. If you don't want to wear a long and heavy coat but still want to stay warm, a vest is the ideal choice. These kinds of vests will offer you insulation and style at the same time. What more could you want? For those who want to try out a vest for the first time or add another vest to your collection, there is no better brand to check out than Canada Goose. Known for their warm, luxurious and stylish outerwear, this beloved brand is one of the most-sought after on the market.

Read more