“Better a diamond with a flaw than a pebble without.” – Confucius

‘That’s what a drop makes’

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Maurice Lacroix presented bright and funky watches, the AIKON #tide line. Moreover its concept contributes to making the oceans a little cleaner, thanks to a revolutionary technology that converts discarded plastic waste into watches. 

Maurice Lacroix launched a new line earlier this spring in Miami and the brand brought the novelties to the Geneva Watch Week as well. The weather was unfortunately less fitting on the day we checked out the watches in Geneva but the models were able to put a smile on our face. 

Sustainability, environmentally friendly products and consciousness for the future is very hyped (or even over-hyped) nowadays but in many cases we don’t find real meaning and real action behind the initiatives of companies. Greta Thunberg has called the fashion industry (and others too) out for greenwashing. Environmentalist Jay Westerveld coined the term ‘greenwashing’ in 1986 – meaning that marketing and communication activities make people believe that a given company is doing more to protect the environment than it really is. 

Vegan and ‘natural’ products, no- or recyclable packaging, eco-friendly services and so on – at this point it is not transparent at all and it could make the well-intentioned customers’ decision more difficult. 

So I was relieved to see the ‘That’s what a drop makes’ motto for the new line of Maurice Lacroix. It is not over-promising but reflects that all of us can take at least a small step towards a slightly cleaner planet. Their concept seems to be well-designed and deliberate.

The new AIKON #tide pieces have the design of the AIKON Automatic watches but beside the vibrant and summery colours and colour-combinations, the material is really important. The watches are formed of #tide ocean-bound upcycled plastic combined with glass fibre. The composite is sourced from a company, founded by a team of innovative entrepreneurs from the Swiss watch and accessories industry.

According to #tide the resultant material is twice as hard as standard plastic, five times more resistant and has a carbon footprint significantly less than the production of virgin PET. They can recycle different plastics – PET (polyethylene terephthalate) used for beverages bottles, LDPE (Low-density polyethylene, like plastic bags), HDPE (High-density polyethylene, like shampoo bottles) and PP (Polypropylene, hard plastic, like a computer mouse).

On the watch, the bezel, case, case-back, crown, end-piece and buckle are all made from this composite material. It takes 17 bottles to make one watch and its cool (and actually usable) packaging, is 100% made of #tide ocean material®. 

The company also meets various certificates and official standards to not only prove how they use the recycled plastic but also that they are creating products safe to wear and use every day

Maurice Lacroix has made a commitment to saving 10 million plastic bottles from polluting the oceans. They have entered into a long-term partnership with #tide to collect plastic bottles from the seas surrounding various islands in Thailand, Indonesia and the Philippines. The company will sponsor waste collection activities, pay for boats and warehouses, fund educational programmes and finance various types of equipment. 

AIKON #tide

The watch has a 40mm case which wears really well, since it’s pretty slim and light. It features ocean wave-like decoration on the dial (the ‘Vague du Jura’ motif) with a flat sapphire crystal, for clear readability. Some models have diamond-set indexes, if you can’t get enough sparkle from the colours.

The model is also endowed with the Easy Strap Exchange system, allowing the wearer to swap the strap for an alternative without the need for any tools. The new timepiece is a great companion for the beach – it has a water resistance of 100m with its screwed crown together with a screwed case-back. 

Currently 10 models are available in the line – 5 with black rubber straps and bezel combined with yellow, green, orange, blue or black dial and case; 5 with white straps and light green, light blue, light pink, dark pink and dark blue cases. The dark blue one has a contrasting white dial, while all the others are colour-matched.  

AIKON #tide is a quartz movement backed with a 5-year warranty.

I loved the packaging too – the AIKON #tide comes in a reusable travel mug made of 100% ocean-bound plastic, every coffee lover can appreciate and in an OceanBag – the smaller version of the bag, which the ‘changemakers’ are using to collect waste from the ocean. 

A little hint – you can even design your very own version if you enter the lucky draw of Maurice Lacroix until 31 May.