Buying a present for a man is difficult enough. But add that to choosing a watch that will both fit him well and suit his style, and it makes the job pretty much impossible.

Men think women are hard to buy for. When the fact of the matter is, if they had a range of jewellery to choose from as vast as women do, men would take that crown without question.

Luckily, they don’t. The world of man jewellery does include a handful of accessories, but it’s dominated by one item and one item only: the wristwatch.

Some may think that having only one piece of jewellery through which you can express yourself makes it even harder to choose the right one. And in a way, they’re right. But providing you know your hubby, brother, dad, or whoever you’re buying for well, and you stick to the following vintage watch buying guide, then you’re sure to come out with a winner.

1. Brand

Is he one for quality or precision? Large, well-known Swiss manufacturers or small British war-time watchmakers? A brand may well just be a name, but behind every one is a unique philosophy and legacy that will all be displayed like an open book on your man’s wrist.

Avoid watch-store salespeople and ask friends or family to get some insight into a manufacturers reputation. Online blogs and forums dedicated to watches can also provide unbiased information, providing you only listen to respected and reputable voices.

2. Style

Is he sporty, professional, playful, or a mixture of all three? Is he a banker, writer, doctor, plumber, or builder? You’ll find all styles of watches with all kinds of faces, cases, functions, straps, and movements, and so it’s important to know for what he’ll use it and precisely what impression he wants it to make.

An engineer, for instance, a simple dive watch may be most appropriate. Whereas for a CEO, you can’t go wrong with a vintage chronograph.

3. Size

Not much needs to be said here, but if you’re buying for a man of large stature with wide wrists, you’ll want to look for a watch with a large face and bulky case. If you’re buying for a more petite man with a slimmer frame, opt for a model with a small dial and thin case. This way he won’t look like a little boy wearing his daddy’s watch.

4. Maintenance

It’s important to bear in mind that, depending on where you buy it from, some vintage watches can require much more maintenance and care than others.

For this reason, many people choose to buy from a reputable dealer that makes sure all their vintages watches are in full working order before sale. If you’re buying a mechanical watch, although their lifespan can be almost indefinite, they also need servicing every few years. An established dealer will provide guidelines of where and when you can do it so as to keep the watch in tip-top condition.

5. Price

As a general rule, the higher in price you go the greater the originality, significance, and provenance of a vintage watch.

You don’t, however, have to spend a pretty penny to pick up something of high quality and design. For instance, for less than a grand, you can get your hands on a vintage Omega 18k Gold watch in excellent condition that dates back to 1966. A timeless classic and a perfect accompaniment for any gentleman going to a wedding or other black tie event.

For just over a grand and a half, you can own an Omega Speedmaster Date Automatic. With an instantly recognisable design, the Speedmaster is hugely popular for its versatility and history as a sports and racing chronograph.

Parker’s is a century-and-a-half old watch retailer built on loyalty, reliability, and value for money. Check out our reviews on TrustPilot or browse our catalogue to see the latest models we have in stock.

Follow this vintage watch buying guide and buy your piece of choice from a reputable dealer, and you really can’t go wrong!