There are watches that you buy because of something more than functionality. These are watches that you buy because of their design, brand, status, heritage, complexity, limited availability etcetera. In other words, a watch that goes beyond instrumentality and provides the wearer with something immaterial. Something that expresses a feeling or holds some additional meaning, like expressing wealth, status, or belonging to a special insider group. If you know, you know.Have watch enthusiasts lost their sense of adventure?
Digital technology and the luxury/mechanical watch are opposites that attract. The app is the pinnacle of digital innovation, the watch made up of wheels, pinions, and springs an anachronism. But the popularity of traditional mechanical watches has gained momentum because of dedicated watch websites. But even more so, in terms of reach and hard numbers, because of Instagram. Not even that long ago, the display of luxury was mainly aimed at one’s personal social circle. The internet, and particularly Instagram, has made the jet-set world and lifestyle accessible to anyone who wants to have a peek. And those who do will more than likely spot the watches on the wrists of the influencers who are currently writing that narrative.Following the happy few
Nothing is quite as captivating as the lives of the “happy few”. The millions of followers of film, music, reality, and sports stars and influencers prove that. In addition to Instagram, other mass media outlets have also ensured that luxury watches in 2021 are recognized and coveted more than ever before. The scope is immense and still growing. Thanks to this growth and ease of access to these interactive possibilities, it’s now easier than ever to share a passion for watches with like-minded people.

Status seekers or watch enthusiasts?
However, the hype of social media has a big downside. This new digital way of “showing off” watches has started to even affect the watch market. Like I previously mentioned, people follow the hype, and get caught up in this virtual contest where people constantly try to outdo each other with the latest hot ticket item. And lately, this has been the steel sports models from Rolex such as the Submariner and the GMT Master II as well as the Nautilus from Patek Philippe. These are the watches that surf the wave of the algorithm and generate the most likes, propelling their wearer to Insta-fame. Tapping into this vein, influencers big and small will often be seen wearing these watches alongside the other staples of the influencer wardrobe.
As a result, the latest group of “watch enthusiasts” status seekers are obsessed with the exact same watches. As a result, it increases demand and because the official dealer can’t meet the demand, it causes prices in the gray market to skyrocket. This is where my question comes in, as it is the reasons why these watches are in such high demand that makes me wonder just how many of these hype-chasers are real watch enthusiasts, and how many are simply playing copycat to their favorite influencer in an attempt to come closer to the much-desired celebrity lifestyle.

The only way to change the way brands put out new watches is for watch enthusiasts, both new and seasoned, to take risks, look for new stuff, and broaden their horizons. In other words, be original, don’t follow the crowd. Wear what you think suits you, not what algorithms, influencers, and other digital powers tell you.