Marine Nationale Straps: Why Do So Many People Love Them?

For those that are looking for something to satisfy the adventurer in them, there are certain aesthetic changes they can make to their wardrobe. One of those places is their watch strap, and moreover, the focus of today's article, the Marine Nationale strap.

Too often, we believe that a bulky metallic and overly shiny watch is the best route to take. It showcases finesse and class that we're trying to bring out to the world. Yet there are times, especially when it comes to wearing a piece of historical note, that you can help bring the class through the knowledge of history and how things have come to be.

What we’re ultimately saying here is that when you’re looking for your next watch strap, you should consider getting yourself a Marine Nationale strap. But what exactly is a Marine Nationale strap?


You may have already seen the spelling and thought it was from France, and you'd be right to think so, as that's where some say the origins come from. Nevertheless, it's a part of history that's worth knowing and has led to these straps being the right blend of iconic, durable, and flexible.

Moreover, it's something that doesn't come across as lavish or luxurious in the way we may think of our European neighbour's offerings. In fact, the refinement comes from its simplicity as, at first glance, it seems like any type of band or canvas strap. However, don't let its simplicity fool you, as that is where the magic comes from. These are, in fact, made of high-quality materials meant to be extremely flexible and durable at the same time.

So, what is the Marine Nationale strap's history, and what makes Marine Nationale straps so popular? Finally, we get to the story that you may have skipped everything to hear. It all started with being resourceful. A military level of resourcefulness.

The famous and luxurious watch company Tudor and other luxury brands at the time would send their watches to the French Navy. They would send them with their standard weighted metallic bands or even leather bands that wouldn’t be quite so durable in the Naval conditions. Wanting to make the watches as usable as possible, the French Navy used their ingenuity to be able to use the watches without the band. In turn, this was the inspiration for a type of band that has only grown in popularity since.

How They Refined It

Regardless of the origins of the strap itself, the innovation of the Marine Nationale led to them creating their own straps that were available to them as members of the military. The production of the initial straps were by hand using components of a parachute, primarily the elastic parachute material, and made into a braid. This provided a flexible, lightweight, and, most importantly, waterproof secure strap for the French Navy.

It sounds exactly like the type of story to generate a product for any true adventurer out there, regardless of if they're thrifty. However, those that are in research mode and looking into these types of bands may find themselves in confusion with the naming. There are times when you will see these labeled as a "Marine Nationale nato strap". It really comes down to how the watch and the band wrap around with each other, but we'll switch back to Marine Nationale as our preferred wording. 

Marine Nationale Strap - Black and Yellow Stripe


While numerous design options exist, not simply limited to the military green of a parachute strap, the practicality of these straps is great. In addition, the durability is top-notch since the material used needs to be technically strong enough for the life-saving apparatus known as the parachute.

So if it's strong enough for a parachute, it will most likely be strong enough for whatever activities you have in mind. This means it's one of the more comfortable options as well because the nylon will feel tight as needed but never choke the wrist in any way.

That means a snug fit with freedom of movement, which often doesn't seem possible with watches. Most are restricted by our activities, and those that have a metal band must constantly readjust the sizing of the band by taking it to a watch specialist to eliminate or add to the watch bracelet. Even with a leather strap, you can put in pin holes to secure the strap. However with a Marine Nationale band, you’ll find your fit always secure and easily adjustable to your needs. 

Offers Security

In addition, it will keep the watch safer and more secure. If the rare chance of a spring bar failure happens, and yes, it can even occur on a Tudor Watch, the band has multiple connectors to make sure that nothing receives damage. Another great part of these bands is how they are looped together with the watch. The Marine Nationale actually straps the watch together by separating the watch from the wrist at all times. That means you, the wearer, only feel the band which has its own benefits.

You won't have to deal with metal and its issues with temperature. You won't need to get an ice cold or burning hot sensation on your wrist, depending on where you left the watch out, and you won't have any type of chaffing occurring either. All you'll feel is the flexible practicality of this material that stretches out as you need it.

Remember we mentioned practicality? While their history is derived from some famous watch brands, you’re able to combine these bands with a variety of watch brands and types.

In addition, you can become completely customizable by having a watch collection and a drawer of straps that you’re able to seamlessly integrate with each other depending on the look you're trying to accomplish.

Seiko Modded Dive Watch with Black and Red Marine Nationale strap


Yet another win for the Marine Nationale is the rugged yet deep colour options that are available, especially when you look at us at the Thrifty Gentleman as your one-stop location for Marine Nationale UK-based watch bands.

So maybe you're looking to be as classic as James Bond, who also wore this black and grey marine nationale style. Or maybe your Marine Nationale watch strap needs a more exotic jungle theme for your explorations in Southeast Asia. Here your option can be this Marine Nationale army green with a red stripe style, perfect for that jungle scenery.

The possibilities can truly be endless with one of our Marine Nationale strap options. Whether you're searching for a desert adventure or want a more bright-coloured one for when you're next out on the open waters, we’ve got you covered. No matter what, when you're wearing one of our Marine Nationale straps, with the right outfit and watch, you’ll be dressed as a gentleman or lady for a myriad of occasions.

It may come across as brash, but at our price points, you're best to consider getting multiple options. They will provide the flexibility when you wear them but will also help provide flexibility when you're looking to build your look. In addition, taking these straps on and off is quite simple, so you can easily exchange the straps to your desired colour options every single day, with the latest adventure awaiting you.



"Great selection of very decent straps. This was my first Marine Nationale strap which I really like, very comfortable and easily adjustable." Greg

"First class watch strap" Mark

"Nicely made and great value" Guy C

"Fantastic! Great service! Really fast lovely product" Daniel W

You can check out our full range of fantastic affordable Marine Nationale straps, available for watches with 18mm, 20mm and 22mm lug widths, by clicking here.

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