If you caught my last NOMOS review, you read about how I never quite understood the brand’s low-key watches until I experienced them firsthand. Spoiler alert: the delicate details eventually won me over, helping the timepieces to somehow pop on the wrist.

This time around I was better prepared for my review of two new NOMOS releases: The Club Campus in Electric Green and Cream Coral. Fresh colorways are hardly cause for commotion, especially for a brand with no fewer than 13 model families. But NOMOS’s claim to fame is its severely understated designs; against that backdrop, a little hue can go a long way in the battle to stand out.

Within the Club Campus lineup are 4 Club Sport pieces (with metal bracelets) and 20 Club Campuses (with leather straps). The Club Campuses come in 36 and 38 sizes, except for the neomatik 39 version which trades a hand-wound movement with a 43-hour reserve for an automatic. Incidentally, the 36 is a true 36mm case, while the 38 is actually a 38.5mm, go figure. The 36 models are priced at $1,500 and the 38s come in at $1,650.

My inbound review watches—an Electric Green 36 and Cream Coral 38 — couldn’t have come at a better time: I was scheduled to fly to Oahu the morning after the FedEx box from NOMOS arrived on my front door. After shooting a quick unboxing video, I strapped the 38 onto my soon-to-tan wrist with the 36 in tow, excited to spin both crowns three hours ahead to island time.

Flower Vase Cutlery Kitchen utensil Plant

While the 38 (aka, 38.5) fits just right for my 6.75-inch wrist, I felt obligated to also give the 36 some wear time, despite its diminutive proportions. Proportionally speaking, the 38 manages to feel natural on my wrist, with a lug width of 20mm and a lug-to-lug measurement of 48.9mm. While the lugs look fairly prominent in photos, they visually blend a bit more in person, particularly in combination with the more neutral Cream Coral/velour grey leather strap combo; the more contrasty Electric Green dial makes the polished stainless case stand out more.

Watch Water Hand Azure Blue

The dial itself is a pleasantly minimalist design, with a so-called bilingual mix of Arabic and Roman numerals peacefully coexisting with rhodium-plated hands inlaid with superluminova elements that glow blue when charged. The ever-so-slightly domed sapphire crystal frames it all discreetly, though NOMOS’ lovely in-house movement is hidden behind a stainless steel caseback. The brand leverages that fact by offering free engraving for personal messages, a nice touch if you intend to hold onto your watch and are into that kind of thing.

Since I wasn’t so committed to the cause and these watches were due back to NOMOS in a few weeks, I was a little less precious than I might be if my name was on the owner’s card. That said, I still gave pause to the idea of getting the Club Campus submerged, even though the watch is rated at 10 ATM, or 100 M; whereas the Ahoi Atlantic I pool tested was equipped with a textile strap, I have a deep-seated mental block when it comes to submersing leather in water. Since I’m tasked with experiencing the watch in the real world—in this particular case, the unreal real world of sandy beaches and constant 81-degree sunshine—I did what I had to do and dunked the larger leather-strapped timepiece into the saltwater. As foreign as it seems to put leather in contact with water, once wet the feeling starts feeling normal, the pale grey leather taking on moisture and assuming a darker tint. The warm waters of the South Pacific turned out to be an excellent aesthetic match for the watch (hello, the dial color is called coral), but an even better match turned out to be the tropical colors of the surrounding landscape–the lush greens of palm trees, the deep azures of the cloud-dotted skies.

Watch Water Muscle Analog watch Fluid

The 38 wears easily enough, but a funny thing happened when I threw on the 36: maybe it was the laid back island vibe, but I didn’t mind how its smaller, old world scale looked on my wrist. As much as the Cream Coral color of the larger dial stands out, the Electric Green manages to draw incrementally less attention to itself, thereby still making a statement but not screaming too loud. The small inset second hand offers a discreet accent of orange that sweeps a small arc just above the 6 o’clock.

By the time my island visit was over, the NOMOS Club Campus watches reinforced what I suspected about these reductionist timepieces: if you’re not a fan of ultra-minimalist watches, a dash of color just might be what you’re looking for. Without the complication of a date window, these two pieces come across as simple, honest, stylish ways to stay analog while exhibiting a splash of style.

Watch Natural material Rectangle Watch accessory Finger

At $1,500 and $1,650, they’re on the more accessible end of the NOMOS offerings (with the Ludwig 33 duo anchoring the brand’s entry point at $1,380). And while my aquaphobia proved to be a moot point—a side-by-side comparison revealed no discernible difference between the strap that had been dunked in saltwater and the virgin one—something about these brashly tinted watches seemed to just work on the Hawaiian Islands. Chalk it up to the power of color and simple design: NOMOS manages to stay true to its aesthetic while exploring bolder colorways, a solid tactic for attracting those who believe that less is always more.