How do you charge your Apple Watch? If the answer is: “I plop it down on the magnetic charging puck, which is lazily strewn across my nightstand,” you’re doing it wrong.
A dedicated Apple Watch stand protects your Watch from scratches, spills, and from falling on the floor when you accidentally trip on that charging cable. It also ensures that your Watch has its own place, so it’s always charged and ready to go (and so you won’t lose it).
But, of course, not all stands are created equal. If you have no idea where to start when it comes to stand-shopping, you’re in luck: We tested out ten popular Apple Watch stands to see how they stacked up. While most of the stands we tested each have their strengths and weaknesses, a couple of stands stood out for their style and innovative design, and a couple stood out for being… less than usable.
Your perfect Watch stand is out there, and it just might be one of these.
Our top pick: Nomad Stand for Apple Watch
Of all the stands we tested, Nomad’s $70 Stand for Apple Watch hits all the right spots. This simple yet ultra-sexy stand is made from a single piece of aircraft-grade aluminum and features a clever (and completely discreet) cable routing channel along its slim back edge. The Stand for Apple Watch looks chic on your nightstand, keeps your Watch from slipping off into the darkness at night, and feels solid and sturdy.
The Stand for Apple Watch is made of a single piece of flat, ribbon-like aluminum that curves around in an eye-catching design. On the top of the ribbon, there’s a small circular cutout for the magnetic charging puck—this cutout has a cradle to keep the puck in place and is lined with black rubber. Next to this cutout, there’s a charging cord groove, which feeds into a routing channel that runs along the back edge of the stand before looping underneath to exit out the back. Installing the charging cord is very simple—all you have to do is loop the USB connector and cord through the circular cutout and gently push the charging puck into place. The puck doesn’t lie flush with the surface of the stand, but this isn’t too obvious once your Watch is in place.
The Stand for Apple Watch is gorgeous,comes in silver aluminum or Space gray aluminum, and it works with any band. Though the base of the stand isn’t any thicker than the stand itself, it’s infused with copper alloy for extra weight so it won’t tip over (it also has a rubberized bottom, so it won’t slip around on your nightstand).
Runner-up: Griffin WatchStand
Griffin’s $30 WatchStand isn’t quite as stylish as is the Nomad Stand for Apple Watch, but it’s half the price and twice as practical—at least when it comes to cord management.
The WatchStand is a black plastic pedestal stand that features a wide, square-shaped base (with a lip—this stand also doubles as an iPhone dock) and a slim black two-piece pedestal that attaches to the base via magnets. The top of the stand features a circular cutout for the magnetic charging puck. Installing the charging cable is easy, but a bit more challenging because this stand has secret cord-management built in. The pedestal comes in two pieces—an outer shell made of hard plastic, and an inner pillar made of grooved rubber. To install the charging cord, you’ll need to remove the inner pillar and push the USB connector through a small hole at the bottom of the circular puck-shaped indentation and out through another hole just underneath that.
This is where it gets interesting: The bottom half of the inner pillar features multiple grooves where you can wrap the charging cord around and around to shorten it as much (or as little) as you like. This is perfect for anyone (like me) who thinks that the charging cord is ridiculously long. Once you’ve wrapped the cord and shortened it to your liking, place the inner pillar inside the outer shell and push the remainder of the cord out the bottom. The base of the stand is raised on four large rubber feet, allowing you to have the cord exit from the back, front, or either side.
The WatchStand isn’t nearly as pretty as the Stand for Apple Watch, but it’s very versatile when it comes to cord-shortening and placement. Because this is a pedestal stand, it will only work with Watch bands that come in two pieces (e.g. not the Apple Link Bracelet). The WatchStand comes in black or white.
Best for small nightstands: JustMobile TimeStand
Just Mobile’s $40 TimeStand is perfect for anyone who’s working with a small amount of space. This aluminum stand has the smallest footprint of the stands we tested, measuring less than two inches in diameter. (If footprint size doesn’t seem like an important factor in your quest for the perfect Watch stand, wait until you see the enormous 8.5-inch CalypsoCrystal Timeless stand.)
The TimeStand is a pretty, stylish weighted pillar with an angled top and a circular center cutout for the Watch band to loop through. Installing your charging cable is easy: Just push the magnetic charging puck into the rubber-lined recess on the angled top of the pillar, and run the cable down the side of the stand (the cable loops underneath the stand to exit out the back of the pillar). The cable is still visible, but it’s tucked neatly out of the way. The charging recess isn’t quite as deep as the charging puck, so about half a centimeter of the charging puck will be visible when you place your Watch on this stand.
Aside from its small footprint, the TimeStand also has weight going for it—it’s fairly heavy and has a rubber-lined bottom, which means it’s not going anywhere (even if you yank your Watch off of it). The TimeStand comes in black or silver brushed aluminum.
Best for people who hate the sight of cords: Mophie WatchDock
The simple, lightweight $60 WatchDock by Mophie is elegant and well thought-out. This aluminum stand features luxe black leather accents and excellent attention to detail. Thanks to the WatchDock’s unique cord-hiding design, you’ll feel like the charging cable was built into this stand.
The WatchDock has a flat, rectangular silver aluminum base covered in a thin layer of black leather. On the left side of the base, a slim aluminum arm snakes upward and curls into a stand—a small, angled rectangular panel with a round cutout for the magnetic charging puck.
To install the charging cable, you’ll need to first unplug your cable and loop the cord through the cutout, before gently pressing the charging puck into the hole. You can then hide the cord inside discreet black rubber casing that runs down the stand’s aluminum arm. At the bottom of this arm, you’ll find a removable rubber piece that lets you push the charging cord’s USB connector through the bottom of the stand. The cord then runs underneath the stand and exits through the back.
Once the charging cable is installed in the WatchDock, it will look like it totally belongs there. The cradle that holds the charging puck is exactly as deep as the puck itself—the puck sits flush with the stand. Thanks to the black rubber casing, the white cable isn’t visible at all until it exits from the back of the stand. Though the WatchDock isn’t the sexiest, design-wise, it’s clear that Mophie paid attention to the little details.
One word of caution: The WatchDock is more lightweight than some of the other stands we tested, which means it can be a little tippy when you’re pulling your Watch off of the charging puck.
Best for travelers: Pad & Quill Luxury Pocket Stand
Pad & Quill’s $80-$110 Luxury Pocket Stand is the only foldable stand we tested and one of only two wooden stands in our round-up. This pocket-sized stand is designed with practicality in mind, and it works as both a charging dock for your Watch and a handy travel carrier for your magnetic charging cable.
When folded, the Luxury Pocket Stand is a little larger than a deck of cards. Unfold the stand, and it folds back on itself to offer an angled charging mount, complete with a cutout to loop your Watch’s band through. Installing the charging cable couldn’t be easier—at the top of the stand you’ll find a small circular cutout that holds the charging puck, complete with a small groove for the cord to escape through. The cutout is slightly larger than the puck (and isn’t lined), so your puck may jostle a bit, though it will mostly stay in place. Because this is a travel stand, there’s no clever cord-hiding solution—the cable simply flops out of the top of the stand.
The Luxury Pocket Stand gets interesting when you fold it back up. The other piece of the stand also has a circular cutout for the charging puck and a groove for the cord—simply snap the stand shut with the cord inside, and you have a handy cord carrying case. When folded, the Luxury Pocket Stand even has dips on either side to make cord-winding easier. So if you’re traveling, this stand isn’t even an extra thing to pack—it’s a carrying case for your cord (though there’s nowhere to put the charging block). The Luxury Pocket Stand comes in American Cherry Wood ($80), Exotic Sapele ($90), or Premium American Walnut ($110), all of which feature a furniture-quality satin finish.
Best for metal bands: CalypsoCrystal Timeless Mount
CalypsoCrystal’s $150 Timeless Mount features a unique—and rather space-invasive—design. This arched stand looks more like a jewelry display than a charging mount, which makes it perfect for jewelry-like (e.g. metal) watch bands. That said, because it’s an arch, it won’t work very well for single-piece bands like the Apple Link Bracelet or the Monowear Silver Metal band.
Style wise, it looks nice: The Timeless Mount is covered in Italian leather and features a slightly padded surface to cushion your Watch. However, style can’t save the Timeless Mount: Its design is problematic in a number of different ways.
To start, it’s large, at 8.5-inches wide and 4-inches high. My nightstand isn’t tiny, but this stand looked too big. It’s also not that easy to setup. At the center of the stand, there’s a hole for the magnetic charging puck, so Installing the charging cable should be theoretically easy. Unfortunately, I found it very, very difficult. I tried looping the cord through the hole and pushing the puck down from the top, but the hole was so tight that my puck got stuck at an angle. I tried pushing the puck up from the bottom of the stand, but again the hole was so tight that I couldn’t push it all the way up to the surface. Because the puck needs to touch your Watch in order for charging to commence, this didn’t exactly work.
Assuming you can get the charging puck properly installed in the Timeless Mount—and that you have a surface large enough to accommodate this behemoth—this stand offers a unique design that may fit your aesthetic. The Timeless Mount comes in “Balance” (orange), “Calibre” (black), “Resonance” (cream), or “Cuvette” (Bordeaux red).
Best for those who don’t like stands: BlueLounge Kosta
Kosta’s $15 BlueLounge is technically not a stand—it’s a coaster (seriously, it’s literally described as an Apple Watch charging coaster). This silicone coaster lets you charge your phone on its side, which is, according to BlueLounge, the “perfect position” for Nightstand mode. (I personally didn’t even realize the Watch had a Nightstand mode.)
The Kosta is a small silicone coaster about 3.5 inches in diameter, with a round charging-puck-sized indentation in the center and a slit along one side. To install the charging cable, unplug the cable and slip the cord through the slit (it’s large enough to allow for the USB connector to pass through). Place the charging puck on the coaster’s center indentation—there’s a magnet that will keep it in place. On the bottom of the coaster, you’ll find a cutout area for the extra cable and a groove that lets it slip out through the back. To charge your Watch, lay it on its side on the coaster and pop the charging puck up off the center magnet.
The Kosta isn’t the most elegant charging solution, but it’s simple and it allows you to use your Watch in Nightstand mode. Though it’s not particularly heavy, its low profile and grippy silicone material keeps it in place on your nightstand, even if you snatch your Watch off the charger. The Kosta comes in dark gray, light gray, and green.
Best for keeping your band’s shape: Just Mobile Lounge Dock
Just Mobile’s $40 Lounge Dock is the only stand we tested that features a cuff that you can wrap your band around. It’s also one of the only stands we tested that requires assembly with outside tools: Before you can use this stand, you’ll need to attach the arm/cuff combo to the base with a Phillips-head screwdriver—it’s not difficult, but it is an extra step.
The Lounge Dock has a flat, round silver aluminum base that measures just over 3.5 inches in diameter. Springing up from the base is a short, round aluminum arm attached to a black cuff. The cuff is sturdy and stiff, yet soft-to-touch, with a hole in the middle for the charging puck. Installing the charging cable is easy—loop the cord through the hole and push the charging puck down from the top, or push the charging puck up from the back. The hole is exactly the size of the charging puck, so it stays in place without requiring a cradle. There’s a small groove near the hole that lets the cord loop out behind the stand, but this stand has no cord-hiding properties.