Hermes Apple Watch bands4.0 / 5
Some of the new Hermes bands have followed Apple's lead in removing leather and come in several new styles to complement the Apple Watch.
Apple has been pushing its continued emphasis on eco-friendly products, including releasing certain configurations of Apple Watch that are entirely carbon neutral.
There's some... debate... on whether Apple's leather-free cases are as quality as its previous ones. Hermes has done better with several new bands that don't rely on animal hide.
Hermes isn't going all leather free like Apple is, though. There are several leather bands available directly from the retailer. But, we wanted to review the four new bands that are being sold directly though Apple.
We chose all in the 45mm size when possible which fits both the larger Apple Watch Series 9 and the Apple Watch Ultra. Because of the lug system, all previous versions of Apple Watch are also compatible.
All bands come in an orange Hermes box with a microfiber-like pouch inside that holds the bands and is stamped with the Apple Watch and Hermes logos.
Hermes Apple Watch Strap review: Twill Jump Band
Priced at $349, the Twill Jump band only comes in the smaller, 41mm size. There are several color combinations available, though we looked at the noir and gold pairing.
Made from woven nylon, the middle of the band is black while the edges and the two loops are gold, though in person they look more brown.
One of the two loops is fixed in place, close to the polished stainless steel buckle, and the other one slides to accommodate the additional band that overhangs when on your wrist.
This band feels smooth and comfortable, though the nylon is a little rigid in comparison to a couple of the other bands we tried out.
Other than the Hermes name on the metal buckle, this band isn't that exciting and isn't our favorite, but it looks clean and simple.
Hermes Apple Watch Strap review: Kilim Band
The Hermes Kilim band is where things get more interesting. It's also priced at $349 and comes in Rouge H, navy, kaki, noir, and the iconic Hermes orange in both 41mm and 45mm sizes.
It's a water resistant fluoroelastomer rubber but has been molded to look like woven individual pieces. The molding on the top and bottom come together in a 3D design.
Apple says this is the most durable Hermes band. It is basically an elevated, fashionable version of a sports band.
What we love about this band, apart from the design, is the clasp. Called a deployment buckle, this clasp looks like a traditional buckle, but actually is a spring-loaded clasp hidden underneath.
You size the band one time, locking it into the buckle, but then from then on, you just squeeze the sides and it pops open. Very easy to take off and put on.
The buckle is polished stainless steel which adds more of a premium touch to this rubber strap.
Hermes Apple Watch Strap review: Toile H Band
The Toile H band is available in 41mm and 45mm sizes for $349. It comes in three colorways, the gold/ecru checkered pattern we chose, as well as velvet/noir and denim/noir.
This band uses yet another different material, Hermes' signature canvas. Its touted as a hallmark of the brand for almost 100 years and is something we've definitely spotted on various handbags.
Compared to the woven nylon, this band feels very soft and comfortable, almost a bit stretchy. It feel great on the wrist, especially for those that don't want stiff watch straps.
It uses a similar clasp as the first Kilim band, but the tong inside the clasp locks in place, making it feel slightly more secure.
Hermes Apple Watch Strap review: Bridon Single Tour Band
Of all the new bands, the Bridon Single Tour has been our favorite. It uses a polyamide yarn which is exceptionally soft and hand braided into the stylish pattern.
The continuous knit is a 3D chevron pattern that goes down both sides of the strap. Each chevron wraps around at angle and is sewn in the center.
As a nice touch, the underside has a small Hermes cotton patch stitched. It gives more of a handcrafted feeling and you can't feel it when worn.
This band has the most unique look of the new offerings and is also very comfortable to wear. It even looks good on the Apple Watch Ultra, though it isn't as wide as we'd like it to be for the oversized watch.
Our band was kaki which has a forest green band and grey and crimson overlapping chevrons but there are black/blue/grey, crimson/red/tan, and blue/crimson/grey versions too.
This kind of strap can easily be dressed up or dressed down, depending on the situation and the color blends feel very universal.
Should you buy the new leather-free Hermes Apple Watch bands?
Look, Hermes is a long-established fashion icon that charges a premium for their goods. Whether you're looking at handbags or Apple Watch straps, you are paying for the name, the design, and the product itself.
All of these new bands appear to be great quality and look wonderful with our new Apple Watch Series 9, but your average person isn't shelling out nearly $400 for a strap.
But these bands aren't for your average person. If they were for your average person, that wouldn't have the cachet and exclusive aura about them.
We aren't here to judge whether or not it is foolish to pay for large sums for brand recognition — if you can afford it, go for it.
There's little to dislike in terms of build quality and we're otherwise very pleased with the look of these new non-leather offerings.
Hermes Apple Watch Strap review: Pros
- High quality materials
- Fashionable designs
- Co-developed with Apple as alternatives to leather
- Lots of colors
- Leather straps still available from Hermes directly
Hermes Apple Watch Strap review: Cons
- As always, prohibitively expensive for average users
- Value is largely in the brand
- Hermes watch faces still exclusive to the Hermes versions of Apple Watch
Rating: 4 out of 5
Where to buy the Hermes Apple Watch bands
Find the new Hermes bands on Apple's website with its other new first-party band styles. All the new Hermes bands are priced at $349.