Why Do We Wear Wrist Watches on Our Left Hand?

Not-Choosing-Best-Pieces-of-Jewelry-for-Your-Skin-Tone
Not Choosing Best Pieces of Jewelry for Your Skin Tone
Credit: Hadiza Nuhhu-Billa Quansah

With the emergence of mobile phones some people are no longer interested in buying wrist watches. Those who love to keep wrist watches adorn them because they are a fashion accessory.

Last weekend, I saw someone wearing a wrist watch on the right hand and it looked a bit different. This prompted me to research on why people wear their watches on their left hand mostly.

According to fashion history, the tradition of wearing watches on the left hand can be traced back to the 19th century. Pocket watches were prevalent during this time, and most people wore them on a chain attached to the vest or waistcoat.

Since the majority of people were right-handed, wearing the watch on the left hand allowed for easy access and convenient time checking.

As wrist watches began to replace pocket watches in the early 20th century, this tradition carried over, and it became customary to wear them on the same hand. Practically speaking, wearing a wrist watch on the non-dominant hand minimises potential damage or discomfort.

For right-handed individuals, wearing the watch on the left hand reduces the risk of scratching or dropping the watch while engaging in various activities throughout the day.

Culturally, the preference of wearing watches on the left hand varies among different countries. In many Western cultures, the left hand is considered the “weaker” hand, while the right hand is seen as more dominant. Therefore, wearing a watch on the non-dominant hand is seen as a way to protect it. On the other hand, in some Asian cultures, it is more common to wear watches on the right hand as a way to maintain harmony and balance.

Beyond these historical, practical, and cultural factors, personal preference also plays a significant role in determining which hand one prefers to wear a wristwatch. Some individuals may choose to wear their watches on the right hand simply because they find it more comfortable or artistically pleasing.

Whether on the left or the right hand, the purpose of a wrist watch remains the same – to keep track of time in a convenient and stylish manner.

 

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