The NATO strap is a favorite among watch lovers for its simple design that is a pleasure to wear. Not only does it add a classic sporty look to any watch, a NATO strap with a lightweight and comfortable design also makes it a perfect fit for almost any environment. 

Even if you don’t know much about watch mod components, you’ve likely heard about the NATO style strap. Adding a NATO strap to a Seiko build looks great, and makes your watch versatile and tough. 


Source: @nhdivers35 on IG


In addition, NATO straps are the go-to strap of choice for anyone who wants a durable and low-maintenance strap option. If your day-to-day life involves sports, the outdoors, or exercise, a NATO watch strap is obviously a great choice.

However, a NATO strap could easily get stained since it is made of nylon webbing. Whether it’s from sweating during workouts or simply resting your wrist on surfaces throughout the day, it is always going to collect dirt.

But don’t worry, there are a few ways to safely clean your watch strap and none of them are difficult at all. 

Let’s take a look!


3 Simple Methods for Washing

First of all, you need to remove the NATO strap from the watch. All you need to do is to pull the strap out from the strap’s buckle, then work the strap through the gap between the spring bar and the case until it is free from the watch head.


Source: Clockwork Synergy


Next, here are 3 different ways to wash your NATO strap that you can try.


Washing by Hand

Without a doubt, washing your NATO strap by hand is the method that costs you the least amount of money. All you have to do is run some cold water over the watch strap and lather a bit of soap into it using your thumbs. Then, you’ll probably notice the dirt starting to come out right away.

As you may encounter some stubborn stains and your thumbs may not be quite getting the dirt up though, using a soft-bristle toothbrush will work great. Next, rinse the lather and dirt off to check your work. If the strap isn't quite clean yet, just repeat the process until satisfied.

Once done, gently press out any excess water and lay the strap out flat for a while to air dry, either indoors or out in the sun is going to be fine. You can also use a towel to absorb the water to speed up the process.


Using A Washing Machine

If washing your NATO strap by hand is more effort than you’re willing to spend, you can simply throw your watch strap in the wash with your clothes.

To prevent the buckle of the strap from damaging your washing machine or other clothes, you can put it into a mesh laundry bag. If you don't have one, use a clean sock or the pocket of a pair of jeans.



Be sure to use cold water and select a gentle cleaning cycle. Also, it’s important to note that you should not select tumble dry or a drying cycle at all.

Finally, air-dry your strap on a flat surface.


Soaking with Stain Removal Powder

For any strap requiring a more intense cleaning, you can soak the strap in a mixture of cool water and OxiClean. It will take you at least six hours to see results, but you will have a very clean NATO strap as a result!

All you have to do is soak the strap in ice water with OxiClean mixed for at least 6 hours, use the hand-washing method above to scrub it clean, then let it air dry on a flat surface. Once you are done, your clean NATO straps will look great, and be ready for more action. 


What to Avoid

Be sure that you use cold or lukewarm water, not hot water as that could damage the nylon weave. Also, since the nylon weave melts under intense heat, do not use a hair dryer or clothes dryer to dry your strap.



In addition, Nylon straps also could be easily damaged when in contact with ozone, most acids, and some types of alcohol, so you should not use bleach or rubbing alcohol on them.


A Great Strap for Anyone

The good news is that NATO straps are also some of the most inexpensive and accessible straps out there, and you can easily find loads of NATO straps in our extensive online catalog. Check namokiMODS today and think about your next Seiko mods.

If you want to use some of the best watch mod parts in the market, namokiMODS is here to help. 

We offer some of the best Watch spare parts out there, including OEM Seiko spare parts. In addition to replacement parts, we have loads of custom watch parts that make almost any modding idea possible. 

Happy modding!

March 04, 2023 — Jeremiah A

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