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Men's Watch Glass: Mineral Glass Versus Sapphire Watch Crystals

We spend lots of time choosing between quartz watches or automatic watches, but maybe not enough time examining the glass on our timepieces. Aside from not keeping proper time, a dinged-up watch surface is probably the most annoying situation to find yourself in. And it's a tough issue to fix.

And the part of the watch that is impacted most frequently? The glass. Spend some time making sure that the glass on your next men's watch can handle a few dings. Many watches today are covered in acrylic glass which is a mix of plastic (acrylic) and glass. Acrylic glass won't last and is only around a 3 on the official MOHS scale of hardness. Men's watches created using acrylic glass are fashion pieces that are unlikely to last. The only option is to upgrade, but which one? Should you choose a watch covered in mineral glass or sapphire crystal? 

Mineral Glass Watch Crystals

Often called Hardlex, mineral glass is made from silica like regular glass, however, it is heat-treated to help prevent scratches. Because of this treatment, mineral glass is purer, structurally harder, and more difficult to scratch than acrylic. It ranks 5 out of 10 on the official MOHS Scale Of Hardness. 

One benefit of Mineral Glass is the clarity of the glass. It's easy to see through and allows you to really see the details inside the watch. 

The process of heat treating the glass also helps prevent it from breaking, but watch makers using mineral glass are betting on the small size of the glass exposed. For a watch that you want to last, another mineral is better.

Sapphire Watch Crystals

Sapphire crystals are the premium choice for a watch. Created at high temperatures using crystalline aluminium oxide, Sapphire crystals aren't actually glass, but they do remain very clear because of the crystalline nature of the finished product. Sapphire crystals are so hard that watchmakers need a diamond saw to cut the correct size out for your favorite premium timepiece.

Ranking 9 out of 10 on the MOHS Scale Of Hardness, sapphire watch crystals are as close to indestructible as you can find. Only diamonds rank harder on the MOHS scale, which means Sapphire crystal is very durable, scratch-resistant and break-resistant. If you want a premium timepiece that won't show nicks or scratches, choose a watch with a Sapphire crystal covering.

One other benefit of sapphire crystal watches: in the unlikely event they do scratch, you can buff the scratch out with sapphire crystal polish. Once done, it's impossible to see the old scratch. Sapphire crystal is a better choice for men's watches.

Smith & Bradley's Premium Watch Promise

All Smith & Bradley men's watches are built standard with industry leading sapphire crystals but we take it a step further. Our collection also features an Anti-Reflection (AR) treatment applied to the sapphire preventing reflected light and glare while enhancing the aesthetic of the crystal surface. 

In every timepiece, we focus on using premium materials and expert craftsmanship. We've designed watches that can handle the day to day of law enforcement officers. That's the only way we can be confident they will handle your day.