5 Best Waterproof Surf Watches for Women 2018

Surf watches for women

Are you looking for stylish waterproof surf watches for women that won’t break in big wipe-outs? Although I usually don’t like to wear a watch in the water (it’s nice to get sucked into the timeless space of surfing and not worry about anything except catching as many waves as possible), sometimes you need to.

You need to know when to catch your last one in, so you make it in time at your work, your kid’s daycare center, your friend’s wedding, your date or your Balinese massage. All super important things you don’t want to be late for.

Update 10 Aug 2019: Have you checked out my SHOP yet? You can find more watches and other awesome surf/yoga/travel gear there!  I just set it up, so bear with me while I add more products to it. 

Surf watches for women
Just one more (photo: Quinten Jacobs)

In the last couple of years, the number of surfing women has increased significantly. This has led to a huge growth in the women’s surf apparel industry, including surf watches for women. When I got my first surf watch (the Nixon Lodown super fancy tide watch) 5 years ago, the only surf watches available were designed for men.

The Nixon lasted about a year before I pressed a button underwater and it broke. Done with the fancy tide watches, I bought a simple but reliable, solid waterproof watch from Swatch.

Surf watches for women
Four years together and counting

I’m still quite happy with it but it doesn’t give me any info on the tides, and it certainly doesn’t keep track of how fast I’m going on my longest wave. Not that I really need that (at all) but it would be fun anyway.

So there are 3 categories of surf watches:

  • A simple waterproof watch
  • Tide watches
  • Activity tracker watch that shows you your surf session statistics (it keeps tracks of your activity/motion)

Whether you’re looking for something simple or more advanced, you’d probably want a watch that lasts a bit longer than a year. I’ve done some research on the latest surf watches for women, and here’s my pick of some of the best watches that I found for surfing.

Simple waterproof surf watches for women

If you’re not so worried about tides, or if you’re on a tight budget, just go for a simple waterproof watch. According to some watchmakers, analog is a bit more durable than digital, and quartz (battery-powered) watches are less sensitive than complicated mechanical (manually or automatically wound) watches. But this also depends on the manufacturer/brand.

1. Casio Women’s Watch – Cheapest high-quality

surf watches for women

Price: Buy for $18.43 on Amazon

Casio has been producing high-quality watches since the 70s. This Casio Women’s watch is one of the cheapest surf watches for women that you can find without compromising on quality.

Features:
Water-resistant to 100meter (330 foot)
Date window
Japanese quartz movement
Analog display
Buckle closure

2. Rip Curl Women’s Horizon – Most fashionable

surf watches for women

Price: $69.96 on Amazon

Got a little bit more to spend? The Horizon, made by one of the biggest Australian surf companies Rip Curl, is not only functional, but it’s also beautiful. It comes in four different colors and is just a tad more stylish than the Casio above (but that’s my opinion).

Surf watches for women

Features:
Water-resistant to 100 meters (330 foot)
Quartz movement
Silicone band
Analog display

Tide Watches for women

Obviously, the problem with a simple waterproof watch is that you can’t tell what tide it is. So when you’re out there surfing, and for some reason, you forgot to check the tides or even the whole forecast, it’s nice to know what the tide is doing.

Especially when the waves are a bit bigger than you expected them to be, you’d want to know if they’re getting bigger with the incoming tide (get ready for the monster sets) or hollower with the outgoing tide (definitely protect your face when you wipe out over the reef).

3. Casio G-Shock Women’s BGA180 Glide with Tide Graph – Best buy

surf watches for women

Price: Buy for $128.81 on Amazon

G-shock watches have been one of the toughest watches for the last 25 years. They are durable and never break. You can even drop this Casio G-Shock from 10 meters without it breaking. Or dive with it, as it can handle 10-bar water resistance. The battery also lasts for 10 years. The small hand of the dial at 9 tells you what the current tide is.

I really like white watches. This one isn’t too big or too small, and the silver and white combination makes it look classy – even for a sports watch.

Features:
Shock resistant
Water-resistant to 100 meters (330 foot)
Tide graph
Thermometer
Digital display

4. Nixon Base Tide – Fashionable and functional

waterproof watches

Price: Buy for $99.95 on Amazon

Although my first experience with Nixon was a short one, their watches are still recommended by surfing websites like SurferToday.com. Of course, Nixon might just be sponsoring their website or its content. If I look at reviews on surfer forums, there are still a lot of complaints about Nixon (also a few about Rip Curl).

As I said, these complicated watches tend to be more sensitive and don’t last as long as analog, simple watches. But if you usually buy a new watch every other 3 years or so, then it doesn’t matter anyway. And they do look pretty!

Features:
Simplified tide telling
Water-resistant to 100 meters (330 foot)
Tide graph
Time, day, date, future tide times, chronograph and countdown timer
Digital display
Negative LCD for easy underwater reading

Activity Tracker Watches for women

If you want to go even further and like to share your surf statistics (how long was your longest wave, how fast were you going, how many waves did you have in total) on Insta or Facebook, then go for an activity tracker.

5. Rip Curl Search GPS – Luxury product

RipCurl watch

Price: Buy for $359.60 on Amazon

Wanna splurge? Check out the Rip Curl Search GPS, which uses motion technology and GPS to show you on a map where you were actually catching your waves. A very cool feature, and definitely handy when you want to get some insight into your surfing skills.

Be sure to charge it after every surf session though, the battery tends to run out fast if you use it in GPS mode.

Features:
Water-resistant to 100 meters (330 foot)
Accurate tide readings
Shock resistant
Digital display
Detailed surf performance tracking data
Syncs to the cloud
5-year warranty

I choose: Casio G-Shock Tide Watch

When my Swatch decides to give up on me, I will go for the Casio G-Shock. I do miss reading the tide on my watch, and Casio seems to be a very reliable brand.

What are your thoughts about the best surf watches for women? Let me know in the comments, I’d love to hear from you.

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