Best rugged bands for Apple Watch Ultra

Best rugged bands for Apple Watch Ultra


These are the best rugged bands for Apple Watch Ultra
Bands built to be as strong as Apple Watch Ultra itself.
Image: Killian Bell/Cult of Mac

You can give your new Apple Watch Ultra a quick and easy makeover by slapping on a brand-new band. There are plenty of awesome, rugged-looking options to choose from that go great with Apple’s most robust smartwatch.

We rounded up the best Apple Watch Ultra bands in this buying guide to make your shopping easier.

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Picking the best rugged bands for Apple Watch Ultra

If you bought an Apple Watch Ultra for its ultra-sturdy design, you probably don’t want to pair it with just any old band. But how do you choose between the best rugged options? Well, there are a few key things that should be considered.

If you’re frequently getting your Apple Watch wet or sweaty, you’ll be better off with a strong silicone or rubber band that can be easily washed and dried. If comfort is your main priority, you should look at nylon and other soft fabric options.

And if you’re going to be particularly tough on your Apple Watch Ultra, you may want to choose a band with a built-in case that surrounds your device. Whatever the case may be, you’ll find the ideal Apple Watch Ultra band for you in the list below.

Table of contents: Best rugged bands for Apple Watch Ultra

Best waterproof band

Apple's Ocean Band is the best waterproof band for Apple Watch.
One of the toughest Apple Watch bands you’ll find.
Photo: Apple

Apple’s official Ocean Band is arguably the best you can get for an Apple Watch Ultra that’s always getting wet. Made from a high-performance elastomer with a corrosion-resistant titanium buckle, it dries quickly, is easy to clean, and fits great — even over a wetsuit.

It’s a little pricey at $99, and it’s only available in a handful of color options, but the Ocean Band is one of the toughest Apple Watch Ultra bands you can get.

Buy from: Best Buy or Apple

Best nylon band

The Nereides band is the best rugged nylon band for Apple Watch.
Comfortable and ultra-tough.
Photo: Nereides

Nylon bands are immensely comfortable, which makes them a great option if you don’t want to feel that Apple Watch Ultra on your wrist all day long. At less than $20, this one from Nereides is much more affordable than Apple’s offerings. Plus, it’s incredibly durable.

Available in a range of colorful designs, the Nereides band is breathable and easily adjustable for a wide range of wrist sizes.

Buy from: Amazon

Best silicone band

The Suitisbest band for Apple Watch is the best rugged silicone band for Apple Watch.
Better than Apple’s own silicone band — and much cheaper.
Photo: Suitisbest

If you want comfort and durability, a soft silicone band is a great way to go, but don’t bother with Apple’s. This one from Suitisbest is not only cheaper, but it’s also slightly thicker for added strength. It also features channels all the way down the band that prevent it from capturing sweat.

Get yours on Amazon now for 15% off its usual price tag, which is just $16.99. (Don’t forget to clip the extra coupon to save even more.)

Buy from: Amazon

Best metal band

The Juuk Qrono is the best aluminum band for Apple Watch Series 9. It's lightweight and more durable than stainless steel.
Still one of the best Apple Watch bands you’ll find.
Photo: Juuk

Adamant that you want a metal band for Apple Watch Ultra? Avoid polished stainless steel if you’ll be wearing it in an environment where it will easily pick up scratches. Instead, go for the aluminum Qrono band from Juuk, which is still one of the best metal bands we’ve tried for any Apple Watch.

Weighing a mere 55 grams, the Qrono is lighter than steel bands. That makes it much more comfortable to wear, but it’s still surprisingly strong. It also ships with an easy link-removal tool so you can get that perfect fit.

Buy from: Cult of Mac Store

Best leather band

Nomad's Active Leather band is the best rugged leather band for Apple Watch.
A leather band that doesn’t mind a beating.
Photo: Nomad

Nomad’s terrific Active Leather strap is a perfect match for Apple Watch Ultra. Built from hydrophobic Heinen leather with stainless steel fittings, it doesn’t mind getting wet, and it features ventilation channels that let your wrist breathe. It also retails for less than $70, which isn’t bad for good leather.

Buy from: Best Buy

Best canvas band

Archer's canvas band is the best NATO band for Apple Watch Series 9. It's made from sturdy canvas and available in a wide range of colors.
Sturdy canvas in a wide range of colors.
Photo: Archer

Canvas may not be as comfortable as nylon, but there’s no doubt it’s remarkably robust. And you won’t find a better canvas band for Apple Watch Ultra than this one from Archer. It’s made from quality materials, ideal in almost any scenario, and nicely priced at less than $27.

Buy from: Amazon

The OtterBox All Day band is the best slim silicone band for Apple Watch.
This one’s slim, lightweight and super-comfortable.
Photo: OtterBox

Best slim rugged band

If you’re willing to sacrifice a little durability for a slim design, check out the All Day Comfort band from OtterBox. Available in a bunch of pretty color options, it’s made from premium silicone that’s soft, flexible and strong. (Some options are even antimicrobial to protect the band from bacteria.) It also uses a traditional stainless steel buckle for a simple fit.

The All Day Comfort band is super-comfortable. I’ve actually been wearing one myself almost every day for over a year now. I love that it’s lightweight, comfortable and doesn’t pull out your hair like Apple’s own silicone bands.

Buy from: OtterBox

Best band with a built-in case for Apple Watch Ultra

Spigen's Rugged Armor Pro is the best Apple Watch Ultra band with a built-in case.
Complete protection for Apple Watch Ultra.
Photo: Spigen

Spigen’s Rugged Armor Pro gives your Apple Watch Ultra all-around protection by combining a band with a case. It’s made from shock-absorbant thermoplastic with a matte finish and cool carbon-fiber accents, and it’s adjustable, with a strong metal buckle.

The Rugged Armor Pro protects your Apple Watch Ultra’s display and side key while giving you easy access to its Digital Crown. It comes in some sweet color options — including an attractive “Space Crystal” — and it’s just $22.99 if you get it on Amazon right now, thanks to a generous 49% discount.

Buy from: Amazon


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