How to change the band on your Apple Watch

apple watch bandAbigail Abesamis/Business Insider

  • Easily change Apple Watch bands by sliding out the old band and installing the new.
  • Push on the buttons on the back of your Apple Watch to release the band.
  • Apple offers a variety of watch bands in different materials, but there are many quality third-party options as well.

Changing the band on my Apple Watch was one of the first things I did upon opening the watch.

I have a Series 3 watch, and it came with Apple's Black Sport Band. The Medium/Large band was already attached, and I changed out the Medium/Large with the Small/Medium band that Apple also included with the watch.

Here's how you can swap out your Apple Watch band for another band:

Change Apple Watch bands by sliding out the old, and sliding in the new

Apple WatchAbigail Abesamis/Business Insider

  1. Turn over your Apple Watch.

    band releaseAbigail Abesamis/Business Insider

  2. Find the band release buttons. There's one for the top band and one for the bottom. They are thin oval buttons at the very top and bottom of the back side of the watch.
  3. Press the band release button and, as you're pressing, slide the band across in either direction to remove it.
  4. Repeat with the other half of the band, if necessary.
  5. Slide the new band in. It should click into place.

How to correctly fasten your Apple Watch band

Apple WatchGetty

  1. Make sure it fits closely (but not uncomfortably) against your wrist. The watch needs to be in contact with your skin to allow the sensors to do their job and optimize watch performance.
  2. Apple recommends tightening your Apple Watch during workouts (for more accurate reads and safety, presumably), and loosening the band post-workout.
  3. Wear your Apple Watch the way you'd traditionally wear a watch. Apple notes that the sensors only work when the watch is worn on top of your wrist.

Which bands work with Apple Watch, and where to find them

Whether you have a 1st generation Apple Watch, the latest Series 4, or anything in between, you can use an Apple Watch band designed for any of these models - as long as it corresponds to the case size (height) of your watch.

Apple notes that bands for 38mm and 40mm are compatible and work interchangeably, and the same goes for 42mm and 44mm cases.

While Apple offers a variety of in-house bands you can purchase from its site, you can also equip your Apple Watch with third-party bands, which can cost significantly less than Apple's bands.

For prospective band purchases, check out our list of 10 Apple Watch bands that look great and cost under $25.

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