Common Types of Watch Bezels and How to Read Them

By now, avid watch collectors know how essential it is to own luxurious and carefully picked-out watches and understand how each of their parts works. It’s not enough that the timepiece you own perfectly tells time while you don’t pay enough attention to its intricate details.

Plenty of watches you can find in the market are used to record a dive or racing lap, monitor someone’s pulse, and estimate speed, distance, and the remaining amount of things. If most of your life you’ve been focused on acquiring custom Seiko dials and other types of watches, now more than ever, you have to understand how your watch’s bezel operates too.

A bezel is the outer ring of metal or ceramic you can find around your watch’s crystal. They contain distinct numbers and various markings and can either rotate or stay in place. If you want to know how to read your watch’s bezel without having a hard time on your own, keep reading below. 

Greenwich Mean Time

Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) is a traditional method of telling time. When you own a watch following GMT, its bezel is marked in twenty-four equal increments, serving as the chapter ring for your watch’s twenty-four-hour GMT hand.

Thus, your watch follows two time zones. But if your timepiece caters to one more twenty-four-hour ring on its dial, it can work as a third time zone. Most GMT bezels come in two colors to indicate one for daytime and another for nighttime. All you have to do to set the bezel is to place the hour marker on the bezel opposite the twenty-four-hour hand to follow your preferred time zone.

Count-Up Bezel with a 0-60 Scale

Most watches used for diving have bezels, with their scales ranging from zero to sixty, which corresponds to minutes that make up an hour. You can depend on the numbers to monitor the time you’re underwater, the depth you’re in, and how much air you have left. You can set a dive bezel by setting the zero marker opposite your watch’s minute hand.

During the first fifteen or twenty minutes, the movement is recorded in one-minute increments, while the rest is marked in five-minute increments. Due to the increased resolution of the first fifteen minutes on your watch, divers have the opportunity to record their decompression stops in a relatively accurate manner when they’re heading up for air at the end of their diving session.

Countdown Bezel with a 60-0 Scale

A countdown bezel basically works as the opposite of a count-up scale because you use it to record the time you have left before or during a specific event. Whether you’re using it to wait for your cookies to bake or your parking meter to expire, there are plenty of opportunities to take advantage of a countdown bezel.

All you need to do is turn the bezel so that your target remaining time is opposite the minute hand. Once the minute hand lands on zero on the bezel’s scale, the time is up, and you need to bring out the cookies or pay your parking ticket immediately to avoid trouble.


The GMT, count-up bezel, and countdown bezel are just some of the common types of bezels you can find on watches sold in the market. Depending on your preferences, you can search shops and sellers for plenty of other bezels to meet your needs and preferences, such as SKX bezel inserts and more.

Are you looking to purchase ceramic bezel inserts in the UK to improve your watch collection? SeikoMods specializes in Seiko sapphire crystals, cases, case backs, bezels, bezel inserts, dials, and other essential metal parts for your watches. Browse through our products and discover our new arrivals!

Leave a Reply