Watch faces. Or, why my Garmin is already marked.


Scratched already? About watch faces.

It’s not like it’s even a ‘cheap’ watch – but the face on my Garmin Tactix already has a scratch in the middle of it.


Yup. Right there, in the middle.

No. I am not particularly careful with it. It’s an outdoor watch, with features like a compass, GPS and barometric pressure on it – I don’t really think it was designed to only be a dress watch. It’s been bush bashing and beyond – but yeah, nice little nick right in the middle of the face.

Buy why then, does a watch that is at tops a year old look older than my Tag, which must be close to ten years? That’s dust on the face of the tag, btw… there isn’t any scratches – despite several dings in the body itself.


It’s all in the face – acrylic, mineral or sapphire?

The cover on a watch face is known as the crystal. It protects the dial. There are three main options here – depending on cost/budget – acrylic, mineral and sapphire.

Acrylic crystal is an inexpensive plastic that does not prevent scratches, but allows scratches to be buffed out.

Mineral crystal is glass, which is composed of several elements that aid in resisting scratches (it is seven times harder than acrylic crystal). It is generally found on more expensive watches.

Sapphire crystal is the cover of choice for premium watches. It is the most expensive type of crystal and is three times harder than mineral crystal. It is made of an extremely durable synthetic material that makes it shatterproof and scratch resistant (not scratch proof). Some have a non-reflective film to prevent glare.

The Garmin Tactix is mineral, the Tag, Sapphire. Yes, the Tag cost about twice the price. But it has lasted more than twice the time with marking.

Is this a complaint? Not really – it’s all relevant to cost/return. But a group of us were discussing why all our Garmins had marks on them. This is why.