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Everything You need to Know about: Sapphire vs. Mineral vs. Acrylic Crystals

Hello, watch family! Your watch brand represents your personality, your values, and your sense of style? Therefore, your watches must be covered with the best crystal in the market to give it an outstanding look. The crystal that covers your watch face keeps out dirt, water, dust, and anything else from coming into direct contact with the dial. There are three different types of material that crystals are made from, and each material is unique.

Acrylic Crystal

Acrylic crystal is another word for plastic, interestingly, it is one of the oldest options for wristwatches. Ideally, it is less expensive compared to other crystals on the market. Honestly, acrylic crystals have some great qualities when it comes to protecting your timepiece. These affordable and cost-effective crystal is significantly resistant to crack and shatter.

The only downfall for acrylic crystal is that it easily develops scratches compared to counterpart crystals. On a scale of 1-10, acrylic crystal gets 2-4 points when it comes to hardness. When acrylic crystal comes into contact with other rigid objects, it easily develops scratches and marks, making it hard for you to see the time, making your watch look incredibly cheap. The good thing is acrylic crystals can also be polished and brought back to almost look like it is new from its near-death several times.

Mineral Crystal

For decades, mineral crystal or mineral glass has for a long time been the go crystal for many brands in the watch markets. On a scale of 1-10, mineral glass scores 4-6 points for hardness and scratch resistance. Materials more rigid than glass can easily leave marks on the mineral crystals. The only downfall of mineral glass it can easily shatter, but you can replace the mineral crystal of your watch at any local watch store at an affordable price.

Sapphire Crystal

Are you looking for a trustworthy and tough watch? Yes, sapphire crystal is on top of the line. It can genuinely get confusing when buying a watch since most watchmakers look to make their watch elegant and tough. Unfortunately, they are not as rigid as sapphire crystal watches.

Another source of confusion is sapphire since it is used in jewel bearings inside the timepiece movements. However, there is no connection between sapphire jewels used in some watches and sapphire crystals used to protect your watch dials. The sapphire crystal refers to glass and not a precious stone. There are several benefits of sapphire crystal

· It makes your watch water-resistant and keeps moister out from getting inside your watch

· It is scratch-resistant and almost impossible to scratch.

The only downfall for sapphire is that it can easily shatter since it is hard. On a scale of 1-10, sapphire crystal scores 8.5-9 points on hardness and nearly unscratchable.

Sapphire is found in multiple colors; this can be either blue, red, yellow, green, and purple. The colored hue comes from the crystal's impurities: which are either copper, titanium, iron, or chromium. Note that pure sapphire can be hard to find, and that is why the synthetic sapphire is used.


I know it is hard to decide whether you need a mineral or sapphire watch. Therefore, if you are unsure if you need a sapphire watch, always order a regular mineral watch. If it gets scratched over within the first one or two years, ask your watch dealer or your watch service department to upgrade your watch to sapphire crystal next time you send it to service.

(Photo credit: Ivan Hampton Ennis)

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