It’s no secret that watch brands have been using the power of nostalgia to sell us stuff for years. In fact, not only is it not a secret, it’s basically what much of the watch industry is built on. Release after release, we see throwbacks to time periods that many eventual buyers can’t possibly remember. Such is the power of nostalgia. If you don’t personally remember the so-called golden ages of diving, aviation, motorsport, or any of the other old-fashioned activities that brand build entire product lines around, Fossil has just introduced a watch that aims squarely at the 90s kids. Yes, the slap bracelet watch is here.
It kind of feels like this is an idea that’s been joked about or discussed in one form or another for quite some time, but to my knowledge this execution by Fossil is the first time we’ve seen that old school slap bracelet incorporated into a watch. Slap bracelets, for those who either don’t recall or are simply of another generation, were quite the fad in the early 90s. Invented by a Wisconsin teacher in the early 80s, the bracelets were made from a thin layer of steel spring, and wrapped in various fabrics or a plastic material. When “slapped” against the wrist, they would immediately conform to your wrist’s natural shape. Unfortunately, cheap versions of the slap bracelet used thin layers of steel that could cut right through the fabric, which naturally posed a safety concern. Once it was determined that kids could pretty easily cut themselves on these things, the slap bracelet dream essentially died.
Or did it? They’ve certainly stuck in the minds of enough millennials for Fossil to bring what they’re calling the Rock Candy Slap Watch to market. Rather than covering the bracelet in cheap fabric, Fossil has wisely gone with a silicone material, which we trust won’t fray and injure an unsuspecting child. The Rock Candy Slap Watch actually started as an April Fools joke on Fossil’s Instagram page, but the response was so positive they decided to make it a reality. This might be the important lesson here: with enough engagement, even the most ludicrous April Fools pranks can be made real.
The Rock Candy Slap Watch comes in a total of four colors: red, blue, black, and “clear.” The cases are translucent, and upon taking a close look noting the name of the watch itself, I have to wonder if Fossil is paying tribute to another 90s staple. You know the one. It’s a juicy jewel of flavor.
As far as telling the time goes, what we have here is a simple three hand design with a day of the week and date display at the 3:00 position. It runs on a quartz movement, of course, and Fossil lists the size at 36mm. Although, I have to say, if your decision on whether or not you’ll own this $130 April Fools prank comes down to the size, you might be taking this all a little too seriously.
The Rock Candy Slap Watch is available now through the Fossil website. And now that the mythical slap bracelet watch is actually here, it’s time to start thinking about the next bit of 90s nostalgia we’re going to collectively conjure into existence in watch form. Give us your best suggestions in the comments below.