Review: Southern Straps upcycled leather watch bands

Apple Watch Series 3 is just being released to the masses, which means many early adopters, and new users are potentially looking for new bands to adorn their Apple Watch. Southern Straps is a manufacturer of some of the early nylon NATO bands, and now we are going to take a look at their leather option.

Each band is handcrafted in San Fransisco, which is a big difference from many bands that you see plastered all over Amazon. The leather bands come in brown, as well as the black model that we got to test. The lugs come in gold, silver, or black.

The lugs are actually really interesting, because they aren’t your standard lugs. They actually have a handy little quick release pin. That means you can easily remove the band from the lug, without any special tools. Now, you probably won’t everĀ need to remove your band from your lug, but it is a handy feature if you ever wanted to swap in any non-Apple Watch band for your Apple Watch.

Souther Straps also touts how the leather in the bands is very high quality. The leather is upcycled full grain Italian leather. Upcycling means they are reusing leather in some fashion to craft these bands. That isn’t a bad thing, because it means less material is going to waste.

From what I’ve tested, the leather here is very nice. It does have a waxed finish to it compared to other bands that feel almost unfinished on the outside. It does show wear over time, but that is just the joy of real leather.

While the price tag may be on the higher end of the market, I haven’t seen many things that read “Genuine Italian Leather” that come in with a bargain bin price tag. If you’d like to pick up a band in the color of your choice, you can find them on Southern Straps website for $75.