This article is our pick of the best smartwatches and fitness bands for women, devices designed with female fitness enthusiasts in mind. Our criteria is based on a combination of visual appeal, smaller sizes and functionality.
Not too long ago, activity trackers started off as chunky and unattractive devices aimed at fitness freaks and techno-buffs. Thankfully, those days are long behind us and the tech community has grasped the importance of designing products that are both functional and attractive.
Now, we are almost spoiled for choice. Whatever your style, you are bound to find something to your liking. Plus, most fitness tracker and smartwatches these days come with a plethora of customisation choices. This makes it all the more easier to make the device your own. For example you can switch a watch-face for one you like more. Or swap the band for one that is a better fit for the occasion.
Essential reading: Best fitness tracker and health gadgets
If you’re wondering which smartwatch or fitness tracker is best for ladies, we’re here to help. For devices in this article practicality and functionality are certainly key – but not at the sacrifice of fashion. These are wearables that are designed to sit on your wrist and keep track of activity and sleep. So they should not be confused with safety wearables, i.e. devices which make it easy to call for help in case of emergency. Although some of them do have certain SOS functionality.
What are the best smartwatches for women?
- Fitbit Versa 3 & Sense (best fitness watch for women)
- Apple Watch Series 7 /Apple Watch SE (best smartwatch for women)
- Garmin Vivoactive 4 / Venu 2
- Amazfit Bip S
- Kate Spade Sport
- Skagen Falster 3
- Garmin Lily
- Samsung Galaxy Watch Active 2
- Samsung Galaxy Watch 4
What are the best fitness bands for women?
- Fitbit Charge 5 (best activity band for women)
- Garmin Vivosmart 4
- Fitbit Luxe
- Xiaomi Mi Band 6 (best low cost activity tracker for women)
What are the best smartwatches for women?
Anyone with even a passing interest in this topic will have heard of Fitbit, one of the pioneers of the wearable tech market. The king of fitness trackers also has a few smartwatches under its belt. One of these is Versa, which is now on its third generation.
When it comes to 24/7 activity monitoring this device ticks most boxes. Step count, distance, calories, floor count, heart rate, blood oxygen levels, sleep – they are all there. Plus you get Fitbit’s simple to use ecosystem which includes the iOS and Android app, along with the web dashboard.
The water-resistant gizmo comes with an attractive 1.58 inch AMOLED display and Fitbit says its the lightest metal smartwatch sold in the US. You’ll also get Fitbit’s female health tracking feature to track your menstrual cycle, along with on-board storage for music, NFC payments (selected models), support for app notifications and more. You can even access Google Assistant on the wrist as well as Amazon Alexa.
With a battery life of around 6 days on a single charge, this is a stylish device which represents a great compromise between a fully fledged smartwatch and fitness tracker. If you can do with a slightly smaller display (1.39 inches) and don’t need onboard GPS, Fitbit Versa 2 also represents a good choice.
For those that want a smartwatch and everything Fitbit has on offer, there’s Sense. It comes with everything that you’ll find on Versa 3, but with some extras such as the ability to take ECG measurements and take more precise stress readings via the electrodermal activity (EDA) sensor.
|Fitbit Versa 3 |
Release date: August 2020 | Display: 1.58 inch AMOLED | Battery life: 6+ days | Water resistance: 5 ATM | Weight: 38 grams | Sensors: 3-axis accelerometer, 3-axis gyroscope, optical heart rate monitor, altimeter, SpO2, temperature | Built-in GPS: Yes | Contactless payments: Yes | Music storage: No | Cellular: No | Operating system: FitbitOS
|Fitbit Sense |
Release date: September 2020 | Display: 1.58 inch AMOLED | Battery life: 6+ days | Water resistance: 5 ATM | Weight: 46 grams | Sensors: Multi-path optical heart rate sensor, multipurpose electrical sensors compatible with EDA Scan app, 3-axis accelerometer, 3-axis gyroscope, altimeter, SpO2, temperature | Built-in GPS: Yes | Contactless payments: Yes | Music storage: No | Cellular: No | Operating system: FitbitOS
If you’re in the market for the best smartwatch experience, look no further than the Apple Watch. It has a great operating system, lots of third party apps, optional cellular connectivity and much more. With each iteration, the device is getting better at tracking your health and fitness, too.
The Series 7 takes across everything from its predecessors and slaps on some new things. The upgrades were not that big this year as compared to some of the earlier years. The most important change is the larger display which Apple has managed to squeeze in by reducing the bezels around the edges. There are also slightly larger size case options than before – 41mm and 45mm.
The main sticking point of the Apple Watch is the fact that you need to charge it pretty much every day. But if you don’t mind doing this, it is as good as it gets.
The device dishes out pretty accurate fitness tracking stats, and can identify and send out alerts if you fall or trip. Something that will no doubt be of use to the older generation. Series 7 also intermittently analyses heart rhythms and sends alerts for atrial fibrillation.
For a long time the device did not have sleep tracking. But now is has that ability so covers all the bases. You no longer need to rely on third party software for this.
And let’s not forget its FDA-approved ECG sensor. This provides a full report that lets you know if your heart rhythm is normal or there are issues.
For those that do not want to spend as much, they can opt for an earlier version of the Apple Watch. A good choice is Apple Watch SE. This one uses the same display as Series 6 and cuts a few corners, but you can pick it up at a much cheaper price.
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|Apple Watch Series 7|
Release date: September 2021 | Display: 41mm and 45mm LTPO OLED Retina | Battery life: 18 hours | Water resistance: 5 ATM | Weight: 32-51 grams (depending on build) | Sensors: optical heart rate sensor, SpO2, electrical heart sensor, accelerometer up to 32 g‑forces, gyroscope, barometric altimeter, compass | Built-in GPS: Yes | Contactless payments: Yes | Music storage: Yes | Cellular: Optional | Operating system: watchOS
|Apple Watch Series SE|
Release date: September 2021 | Display: 40mm and 44mm LTPO OLED Retina | Battery life: 18 hours | Water resistance: 5 ATM | Weight: 53 grams | Sensors: optical heart rate sensor, accelerometer, gyroscope, barometric altimeter, compass | Built-in GPS: Yes | Contactless payments: Yes | Music storage: Yes | Cellular: Optional | Operating system: watchOS
Vivoactive 4 is a Swiss knife of activity trackers. But one that has been designed to appeal to both men and women. The fourth generation brings a couple of size options to choose from (45mm and 40mm).
You’ll find everything you need to track your activity and sleep around the clock, including pulse oxygen readings and estimated respiration. There’s also the Body Battery function, abnormal heart rate alerts, tracking of heart rate under water, Yoga workouts, Pilates workouts and on-screen exercise animations. All of these make the watch a great all-round fitness companion.
But it goes beyond aesthetics, built-in GPS and tracking everything under the sun. The timepiece also comes with some smartwatch features such as Garmin Pay and built-in storage for music. All of this works with Garmin Connect on your iPhone or Android phone, an app that impresses with its depth.
For those that want something more fancy, there’s Venu 2. It has a more premium design and a higher price tag but largely the same specs. Instead of two physical buttons that one only has one. The more important difference, though is to do with the display. Venu 2 comes with a high-res AMOLED, so a big upgrade over the transflective memory-in-pixel display. Other changes including the latest generation heart rate sensor and more storage space for music.
|Garmin Vivoactive 4|
Release date: September 2019 | Display: 1.3 inch MIP (Vivoactive 4S 1.1 inch) | Battery life: up to 8 days | Water resistance: 5 ATM | Weight: 51 grams | Sensors: 3-axis accelerometer, compass, barometric altimeter, optical heart rate, SpO2, thermometer | Built-in GPS: Yes | Contactless payments: Yes | Music storage: No | Cellular: No | Operating system: Proprietary
|Garmin Venu 2|
Release date: April 2021 | Display: 1.3 inch AMOLED (Venu 2s: 1.2 inch) | Battery life: up to 11 days | Water resistance: 5 ATM | Weight: 49 grams | Sensors: 3-axis accelerometer, compass, barometric altimeter, optical heart rate, SpO2, thermometer | Built-in GPS: Yes | Contactless payments: Yes | Music storage: Yes (up to 500 songs) | Cellular: No | Operating system: Proprietary
Amazfit Bip S comes packed with features such as built-in GPS, heart rate sensor and notifications. In addition to keeping tabs on your activity 24/7 the timepiece provides tracking of your runs, cycling and other sports with mapped routes, detailed stats and heart rate zones.
But Bip’s claim to fame is its astonishing 40 days of battery life, and that’s with an always on colour touch-screen! With GPS switched on it comes down to an excellent 22 hours.
In terms of looks, this is a cheerful-looking smartwatch. Most would equate it to a blend between Pebble Time and a simplified version of the Apple Watch.
Is it perfect? No. It doesn’t have an altimeter for counting floors climbed and the non-fitness features pretty much end with notification support.
But if you’re after a simple wearable that keeps tabs on your fitness, tracks your running and cycling with GPS and you don’t want to be bothered with charging often, the Bip makes a strong case for itself. You’ll struggle to find a smartwatch that delivers anywhere near the same level of features for the price.
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|Release date: February 2020 | Display: 1.28 inch reflective color display | Battery life: up to 40 days | Water resistance: 5 ATM | Weight: 46 grams | Sensors: BioTracker PPG Bio-Tracking optical sensor, 3-axis accelerometer, 3-axis geomagnetic sensor | Built-in GPS: Yes | Contactless payments: Yes | Music storage: No | Cellular: No | Operating system: Proprietary|
Kate Spade is a designer brand but this is not just a flashy watch as it comes with Fossil Group 5th generation smarts. This entails a built-in speaker, the Snapdragon 3100 processor, 4GB of storage and 512MB of RAM. Other than that there is built-in GPS, NFC for contactless payments, smartphone music control, Google Assistant and more.
Heart rate is measured at regular intervals throughout the day and continuously when in workout mode. The timepiece uses Google Fit to monitor your activity stats, show progress towards goals and dissect your workout metrics. These can be viewed in the smartphone app or the 1.19-inch AMOLED display.
Weighing just 40g, the swim proof (3 ATM) watch comes in three different colour-ways including black and lilac, pink and red, and evergreen and black. In a sense the sporty device still has the signature Kate Spades look, only now the scallop is around the 42mm lightweight aluminum top ring.
A nice touch is the “choose your look” micro app. It is a way to customise the watch face by tailoring the dial to fit any occasion or outfit.
The caveat is the battery life. As with all watches with Google’s wear OS, it struggles to go much beyond a day. Luckily, a quick 50 minute top-up is enough to take the battery above the 80% level.
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|Release date: October 2019 | Display: 1.19 inch AMOLED | Battery life: 24 hours | Water resistance: 3 ATM | Sensors: 3-axis accelerometer, altimeter, optical heart rate sensor | Built-in GPS: Yes | Contactless payments: Yes | Music storage: No | Cellular: No | Operating system: WearOS|
Launched earlier this year, Skagen Falster 3 comes with the latest Qualcomm Snapdragon 3100 processor, a speaker and the rest of the Fossil Gen 5 smarts. This means you’ll get everything you need to track your fitness around the clock, built-in GPS, water-resistance and more.
At around 24 hours, battery life remains a sticking point. But there are less power intensive Extended Battery Modes which will give it a few more days of life.
The timepiece comes in a few design options. These include a choice between Black Silicone, Blue Silicone, Gun Metal Steel Mesh and Leather – Silicone based straps. A limited edition design from a collaboration with Norwegian DJ Kygo will also be available soon. That’s an award-winning Norwegian DJ, songwriter and producer in case you were wondering. The watch has the two pushers and crown in the middle.
As you’d expect Falster 3 has the ability to display notifications and alerts from your smartphone, as well as calendar and third-party app information. To keep you connected on the go you are able to take smartphone calls from the watch and interact with Google Assistant.
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|Release date: July 2020 | Display: 1.3 inch OLED | Battery life: 24 hours | Water resistance: 3 ATM | Sensors: 3-axis accelerometer, gyroscope, altimeter, optical heart rate sensor | Built-in GPS: Yes | Contactless payments: Yes | Music storage: Yes | Cellular: No | Operating system: WearOS|
It has been a long time coming. Lily is Garmin’s first smartwatch specifically designed for women. Launched in early 2021, it comes with the standard Garmin technology but packed away in something that looks nice and feminine.
The watch has a 34.5mm face so is smaller than the Garmin Vivoactive 4s and Fenix 6s. As far as weight it’s a similar story. Lilly comes in at a mere 24 grams, Vivoactive at 40 grams and the Fenix at 58 grams.
There’s a 1 inch (25.4mm) TFT LCD panel on-board. This is not color. Rather, it can display 16 shades of grey on a multicolored background. The combination makes the screen stand out beautifully. Lily doesn’t have any physical buttons so you interact with it purely via the touch display.
Under the hood you get the usuals which include an accelerometer, heart rate sensor and SpO2, but no built-in GPS or altimeter. Battery life is around 5 days.
A useful add-on is an emergency help function. If in need, it allows you to transmit your location to pre-defined contacts.
If you are after something feminine on your wrist and are not too bothered about detailed performance metrics, Lily is the Garmin to go for. It provides all the activity tracking basics and has some smartwatch features sprinkled in.
|Release date: January 2021 | Display: 1.0 inch TFT LCD | Battery life: up to 5 days | Water resistance: 5 ATM | Weight: 24 grams | Sensors: 3-axis accelerometer, optical heart rate sensor, SpO2 | Built-in GPS: No (Connected GPS) | Contactless payments: No| Music storage: No | Cellular: No | Operating system: Proprietary|
Samsung released both the first and second generation of Watch Active in 2020. Watch Active 2 comes with a fresh new look, design and size options, ECG sensors, an LTE variant and more.
The trademark bezel has not made a return. However, you are able to navigate the watch via the black border that surrounds the screen and functions as a touch sensitive strip. That’s alongside the touchscreen and physical buttons, of course.
More interestingly, Samsung has added size choices this time around. The original Galaxy Watch Active only come in a 40mm variant. The second generation comes in an additional 44mm option.
This is primarly a fitness focused device. There’s built-in GPS and a slew of activity tracking sensors including an accelerometer, heart rate, gyro and barometer. Samsung says the full eight photodiodes on the rear side improve on the heart rate monitoring capability. The better precision is coupled with alerts when their heart beat goes above or below normal levels.
There’s now an LTE variant in addition to the standard Bluetooth version. The first comes packing a 340 mAh battery, the second a 237 mAh one. Both are good for around a day of battery life.
|Release date: August 2019 | Display: 1.2 inch or 1.4 inch AMOLED | Battery life: up to 2 days | Water resistance: 5 ATM | Weight: around 30 grams | Sensors: 3-axis accelerometer, optical heart rate sensor, electrocardiogram | Built-in GPS: Yes | Contactless payments: Yes | Music storage: Yes | Cellular: Optional | Operating system: Tizen|
Samsung Galaxy Watch 4
Galaxy Watch 4 represents the latest and greatest offering from Samsung. Unlike other smartwatches under its belt, this one does not run on Tizen. Instead, Samsung has teamed up with Google and is running Android Wear 3.0 with a OneUI Watch 3.5 overlay. This is the only smartwatch currently to run the latest version of Google’s operating system. Others are expected to join it by mid-2022.
You could probably say, the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 is Apple Watch’s greatest opponent. They are fighting for the same space – folks who want are not satisfied with just a fitness watch. Both devices are fully fledged smartwatches so come with lots of functionality as well as the ability to install third party apps.
Apple prefers a sportier look whereas Samsung favors a more sophisticated design. The Galaxy Watch oozes style and resembles a traditional timepiece. It has a circular face with a precision rotating bezel, a choice of high quality leather straps, and Corning Gorilla Glass protection. Two size choices are available for the regular variant – 40mm and 44mm. This one can be considered to be the successor the Galaxy Watch Active 2. Then we have the Classic option which is an updated version of Watch 3. That one can be picked up in 42mm and 46mm size options.
We suggest going for this watch if you own a Samsung phone. It is probably the best choice. Some of the watch’s functionality is not available to those who own iPhones or Android phones. So those people might be better off looking at other options mentioned in this article.
|Release date: August 2021 | Display: 1.2 inch or 1.4 inch Super AMOLED | Battery life: around 40 hours | Water resistance: 5 ATM | Weight: around 50 grams | Sensors: 3-axis accelerometer, optical heart rate sensor, electrical heart sensor, geomagnetic sensor, gyroscope, bioelectrical impedance analysis, hall sensor | Built-in GPS: Yes | Contactless payments: Yes | Music storage: Yes | Cellular: Optional | Operating system: WearOS|
What are the best fitness bands for women?
Charge 5 is a new and improved version of Fitbit’s best selling Charge 4 fitness tracker. The device comes with some important upgrades – one of these is a AMOLED touch display. The predecessor has a TFT, Grayscale. The edges are more rounded for a stylish look, and the physical button has been dropped.
There is some new sensor technology on-board, too. Similar to Fitbit Sense, Charge 5 comes with an ECG and EDA sensor. In that sense it can do everything that the company’s most high-spec smartwatch can do. At least in terms of fitness and health tracking. Some of the functionality does require a Fitbit Premium subscription, so that is something to keep in mind.
The built-in GPS is still there. It is something avid runners or cyclists will appreciate, as it means they can leave their smartphone behind when exercising. The functionality helps make Charge a viable alternative to fully fledged sports watches.
There is some smart functionality sprinkled in, as well. In addition to notifications support, this includes NFC for contactless payments on all versions of the device, the ability to operate Spotify and more.
All in all, this is a sleek looking device which comes with everything an average person needs to keep tabs on their activity 24/7. Its predecessor, the Charge 4, remains a viable alternative. Particularly now that its price has come down. You will miss out on the fancy design, but most of the important functionality is there.
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|Release date: August 2021 | Display: 1.04 inch AMOLED | Battery life: up to 7 days | Water resistance: 5 ATM | Weight: 15 grams (without strap) | Sensors: Multi-path optical heart rate sensor, multipurpose electrical sensors compatible with EDA Scan app, 3-axis accelerometer, 3-axis gyroscope, SpO2, temperature | Built-in GPS: Yes | Contactless payments: Yes | Music storage: No | Cellular: No | Operating system: FitbitOS|
Xiaomi Mi Band 6 (best low-cost fitness band for women)
If you’re out to purchase a budget fitness band – look no further than the Xiaomi Mi Band 6. The Chinese-based outfit sells what is considered to be the most popular low cost activity tracker in the world. Sure, with some shopping around you will find a cheaper device. But the Mi Band 6 has both good hardware and software. Other low cost options are likely to be lacking in at least one of those two aspects.
The sixth generation of Mi Band comes with some useful upgrades over its predecessor. The most important is the inclusion of a massive 1.56 inch AMOLED with 326 PPI (pixels per inch) or 152 x 486 pixels. This equates to 50% more space as compared to the old version which only has a 1.1 inch screen. The good news is that Xiaomi has managed to achieve this upgrade by shrinking the bezels. Which means the physical dimensions of the device have gone up only marginally.
Other additions include an SpO2 sensor and more sports modes. The excellent battery life, water proofing, fitness sensors, Connected GPS and everything else from the predecessor generation is all there.
As before, the device packs a rubberised, practical look. So if you’re after something fancy that will turn heads, look elsewhere. But if you are something perfectly functional that will have you covered around the clock, Mi Band 6 presents itself as a low risk investment.
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|Release date: March 2021 | Display: 1.56 inch OLED | Battery life: up to 20 days | Water resistance: 5 ATM | Weight: 23 grams | Sensors: 6. axis sensor: low power-consumption – 3-axis accelerometer and 3 axis gyroscope, PPG heart rate sensor, SpO2 | Built-in GPS: No (Connected GPS) | Contactless payments: Yes | Music storage: No | Cellular: No | Operating system: Proprietary|
Founded in 2014, Bellabeat is a wellness-oriented outfit dedicated to creating attractive connected wearables for women. This smart piece of jewellery is designed to track your health. Wear it as a necklace or bracelet with accessories or items you already own – or clip it to any clothing item as a stylish accent.
The tracker learns about you and provides insights and improvements to your daily routine to help you feel your best. The wearable tracks your breathing, sleep, activity and monthly cycles through the smartphone app. If you are feeling stressed, you can follow one of its breathing routines to try and calm yourself down. Its advanced technology is hidden inside the wood housing, giving it a soft natural appeal.
No need to worry about charging. The tracker is powered by a replaceable battery that lasts up to 6 months. There is also 14 days worth of built-in memory, so you only need to sync it every couple of weeks.
Right are a few versions to choose from including Leaf and Urban. Slightly smaller in design, Urban has advanced features to help you deal with stress. The feature analyzes different lifestyle habits to help you not only manage this silent killer, but also prevent it by determining the triggers that cause it.
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|Release date: May 2015 | Display: None | Battery life: up to 6 months (replaceable battery) | Water resistance: IPX (grade 6) – shower safe | Weight: 16 grams | Sensors: 3-axis accelerometer | Built-in GPS: No | Contactless payments: No| Music storage: No | Cellular: No | Operating system: Proprietary|
Garmin Vivosmart 4
Vivosmart 4 is one of the smallest and thinnest Garmin fitness bands you can buy. In our review we note that, the casual user will find pretty much all the essentials for around the clock activity monitoring. Plus, you can have confidence in the quality of data as Garmin has lots of experience in building such products.
The tracker has been a best seller since its launch and has been particularly popular with women due to its tiny form factor. Any smaller and it might look like a bracelet! Nevertheless, the thing is clearly meant for fitness buffs rather than fashion freaks. Vivosmart 4 is sporty looking with its silicone strap, aluminum bezel and polycarbonate lens.
The ability to read blood oxygen levels is a nice add-on over its predecessor. And there’s the Body Battery metric which works well and adds an insight into your recovery.
If are happy with a small display, the Vivosmart 4 is a great option that is priced reasonably. Those very serious about running, though, may want something something with built-in GPS and a larger screen – as it can be difficult to read stats on the go.
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|Release date: September 2018 | Display: 0.26 inch OLED | Battery life: up to 7 days | Water resistance: 5 ATM | Weight: 23 grams | Sensors: 3-axis accelerometer, barometeric altimeter, optical heart rate sensor, SpO2 | Built-in GPS: No (Connected GPS) | Contactless payments: No| Music storage: No | Cellular: No | Operating system: Proprietary|
Fitbit Luxe is the smartest looking activity band from the San Francisco based wearables manufacturer. The device is a lot more aesthetically pleasing than most other Fitbit products. No company’ logo below the display, gone are the hard angles in favour of rounded edges.
Best of all you get a gorgeous AMOLED (124 x 206 pixel) display. You will need to use its touch capabilities to interact with the thing as there are no physical buttons.
In terms of build, Luxe has a metal housing made of polished stainless steel. This can be paired with various straps including some special edition ones. The band that you get by default is made of silicone and fastens with an anodised metal buckle and tang.
Below the surface are the usual fitness tracking goodies and sensors. This includes an optical heart rate monitor, 3-axis accelerometer, SpO2, temperature sensor, vibration motor and ambient light sensor. No built-in GPS, though, only Connected GPS.
Battery life is fairly decent which is impressive considering the small physical size. Luxe will go for around 5 days.
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|Release date: April 2021 | Display: 0.76 inch AMOLED | Battery life: 5 days | Water resistance: 5 ATM | Weight: 26 grams | Sensors: -axis accelerometer, 3-axis gyroscope, optical heart rate sensor, SpO2, temperature | Built-in GPS: No (Connected GPS) | Contactless payments: No | Music storage: No | Cellular: No | Operating system: FitbitOS|
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