Fitness trackers have grown in popularity as more people realise how useful the data that they provide can be to analysing your health and fitness. There are many different fitness trackers out there, and they come in all shapes and sizes.
This article will take a look at the five best fitness trackers without screens.
Best Fitness Trackers Without Screens
Each of the fitness trackers on this list has been picked for their quality, durability, value for money, and the amazing data that it collects. We’ve also stuck to fitness trackers without screens. One of the reasons why screenless fitness trackers are so popular is that they tend to be smaller and lighter to wear. They are also more durable and have significantly better battery life.
People may argue that it is harder to access data on them during your workout, but this is just one minor downside. They can all be linked to your smartphone or computer and the data can easily be viewed that way. The smaller size and weight also makes them ideal for data analysis while you sleep.
These are our picks for the five best fitness trackers without screens.
#1 Fitbit Flex 2
The first screenless fitness tracker on our list is the Fitbit Flex 2. This is one of the most minimalist fitness trackers on the market, and you’ll easily forget you’re wearing it during your workout!
The first thing that you should focus on with any screenless fitness tracker is its ability to accurately report data. If it can’t do that, then it doesn’t matter how comfortable it is, how waterproof it is, or whether it represents good value for money or not.
Luckily, the Fitbit Flex 2 is highly accurate, and it can reliably track your steps, calories, and the distance you have travelled.
The Fitbit Flex 2 is also very durable, and is completely waterproof. It is considered “life-proof” and can be worn in the ocean, swimming pool, or even in the shower.
One of the best features of the Fitbit Flex 2 is the silent, vibration-based sleep tracker and alarm. This is where the minimalist design really comes into its own. It’s ability to track your sleep quality with zero disruption is excellent.
The Fitbit Flex 2 is also able to notify you when you are getting a call or text, which is either a great addition or an incredibly irritating addition depending on your point of view. Luckily, it can be switched off if you don’t like it.
Expert Opinion & Tips
This is a great fitness tracker for triathletes, or people who perform low intensity steady state exercises. The price is quite high for a fitness tracker, and it is disappointing that the battery life is only around 4 days, we’ve seen trackers that are much better than that.
If you are looking for a great sleep tracker, and something that can measure your walks, hikes, runs, or bike rides, then this is a great, unobtrusive fitness tracker.
- Step counter and distance counter are very accurate
- Fully waterproof
- So comfortable you’ll forget you’re wearing it
- Automatic exercise detection for aerobic activity
- Excellent app to use alongside fitness tracker
- Battery life is disappointingly short for a screenless tracker
- Not able to track weight lifting or resistance machines
- Quite expensive
#2 Fitbit Flex Wireless Activity + Sleep Wristband
The original Fitbit Flex has been around for almost ten years now, and it can be credited with kickstarting our obsession with fitness trackers. In some senses, the Fitbit Flex has become a little dated, but the addition of the sleep wristband and its wireless syncing ability has helped to keep it relevant.
While many see this fitness tracker as out of date, it is actually one of the more reliable fitness trackers out there. Many of the features it offers are still impressive to this day. The wireless syncing between the tracker and your smartphone of CPU is instant and rarely causes any issue.
The exercise tracking is mostly accurate, and you should be able to use the data to inform your diet and lifestyle decisions. The sleep tracking is also good, but perhaps not quite as good as the Fitbit Flex 2. Of course, at half the price, this isn’t too surprising.
The LED-based progress display is simple but effective, changing colours to reflect your progress towards your goals. This works really well when measuring your step count in particular.
Another feature that we really like about the Fitbit Flex is how stylish they are, though not quite as gorgeous as the Fitbit Flex 2, the original Fitbit Flex is small and slim, barely taking up any space on your wrist. You’ll forget it’s there after the first few minutes of wearing it, and the neutral colours make it blend in nicely with whatever you are wearing.
Expert Opinion & Tips
If you don’t have the budget for the more recent (and expensive) fitness trackers on the market, then the Fitbit Flex is a great option. Perfect for anyone looking to increase their daily step count, and get some feedback on their sleep quality and duration.
- Great price and value for money
- Wireless syncing is excellent
- Reliable performance
- Not as waterproof as Fitbit Flex 2
- Battery life is not great
#3 Fitbit Charge Wireless Activity Wristband
The Fitbit Charge is technically not a screenless fitness tracker, but the screen is so small and basic that we feel that it deserves a spot on our list. The Fitbit Charge was incredibly popular when it first debuted, and that popularity has endured over the years. Today, it is seen as a classic, but one that still delivers at a very reasonable price.
There are issues such as a slightly inaccurate step count, and the lack of true waterproofing is a bit of a let-down. But for the price, it offers a lot.
The first thing that pops out at you with the Fitbit Charge is the long battery life, it offers 7-days between charges. That’s much better than the other fitness trackers on this list, but still doesn’t compete with the top level batteries out there.
The design is gorgeous, and this is a real plus for the Fitbit Charge. It syncs well with your phone, with minimal issues reported. Once synced, you can receive text and call notifications on the Charge which are vibration-based.
The Fitbit Charge is water resistant, meaning that sweat and rain won’t affect it. But it is not waterproof. Don’t wear it in the bath or shower, and certainly don’t try and swim with it on. This is slightly disappointing, but easy enough to deal with.
Expert Opinion & Tips
This is a great fitness tracker for anyone trying to improve their health by increasing their daily activity (walking) and improving their sleep quality. There are more recent versions of the Fitbit Charge out there that may be more suitable, but they cost a lot more. This is the ideal budget fitness tracker, and is perfect for people who are embarking on their fitness journey.
- 7-day battery life
- Durable and stylish design
- Syncs well with phone
- Text and call notifications
- Excellent price point
- Water resistant rather than waterproof
- Not technically screenless
- A little outdated by now
- Inaccurate step counting (only around 0.05% off)
#4 Amazon Halo Band
Amazon has recently started to bring out its own products that rival big name brands. Considering the ability they have to market their products on the Amazon website, this is a bit of a no-brainer. Despite what you may hear on social media, the company has a lot of trust from consumers, and their ability to provide decent products at low prices is a huge selling point.
The Amazon Halo band is an excellent fitness tracker, with a host of cool features. It is also well priced, though many of the features require a subscription, which can lead to it being more expensive in the long-term (though none of the subscriptions are compulsory).
In this review, we will discuss the fitness tracker assuming that you have paid for the monthly membership. It really isn’t that much, and the benefits of using it are massive.
The strap is pretty decent looking, and comes in three colour variations. It has a fabric strap which is comfortable and easy to adjust.
There are workouts available from the app, and you can also get nutrition and sleep support. The strap is able to estimate your body fat percentage, which when paired with your activity levels, BMI, and sleep data can be used to give you accurate calorie targets (for weight loss, maintenance, or weight gain).
The app also claims to be able to tailor a shopping list to your nutritional needs, and it can order the food directly from Alexa.
It also analyses your tone while speaking, so that it can give you feedback on how you sound to others. If you are self-conscious about this, then we recommend never attempting to use this! It will only stress you out.
The battery life is impressive, with up to ten days possible provided you have the tone setting turned off.
Expert Opinion & Tips
Amazon claims that the body fat analysis setting is twice as accurate as regular body fat scales. That doesn’t mean much though, as body fat scales are notoriously inaccurate. They are very easy to trick, often by accident. Drinking too much water can ruin your scores as body fat measurement can be affected by how hydrated/dehydrated you are.
- Sleep measurement and analysis is excellent
- Workouts are inventive if a little basic
- Comfortable and easy to adjust strap
- Heart rate tracking is decent
- Can be paired with many other fitness and health apps
- Excellent battery life (unless tone is turned on)
- Monthly membership cost for most features
- Body fat estimate is inaccurate
#5 Bellabeat Leaf Urban Smart Jewellery Health Tracker
The final tracker on our list is the most unique by far. That does not mean it is the best, but it brings something completely different to the table. Simply put, the Bellabeat Leaf tracker is beautiful. Honestly, this looks like real jewellery, yet it is actually a decent screenless fitness tracker.
The first feature that jumps out at you is the six-month battery life, the lack of charging required means that you can keep this tracker on your body 24/7 without any interruptions to your data accumulation. This makes it much better than trackers that need almost daily charging,
The leaf can be synced to your phone with ease, and it is through your phone that all of the data is presented to you and analysed. The app also provides you with meditation exercises, mostly focused around deep breathing and relaxation.
The fitness tracker is fairly water resistant, but not completely waterproof. This means that you can wear it in the shower or while raining and it will be fine. But you need to take it off when swimming. If you swim regularly then this is a pretty big dealbreaker. But non-swimmers won’t be affected at all by its lack of waterproofing.
Expert Opinion & Tips
The menstrual cycle plays a huge part in a woman’s mental and physical health, it can also affect metabolic rate and activity levels. So, finding a fitness tracker that tracks your menstrual cycle is a gamechanger.
- Looks amazing
- Excellent battery life
- Tracks menstrual cycle
- Can be worn as a necklace
- Not suitable for men
- Lack of heart rate monitor
- Poor movement tracking when used as a necklace
- Not waterproof
Features To Consider When Buying A Fitness Tracker
There are several features that you should always consider when purchasing a fitness tracker. Here is a quick rundown of the top seven considerations:
How good are you at remembering to charge your electronic devices? If you are an expert by now then the battery life of your fitness tracker may not be that big a deal. But for some people, having to charge a fitness tracker every couple of days can be a nightmare. Check the battery life before purchasing.
Step count data does not need to be 100% accurate, you just need a decent idea. But heart rate monitors, distance travelled, and sleep measurements should be as accurate as possible. Otherwise, what’s the point?
You are going to be wearing this fitness tracker non-stop for days, weeks, or even months at a time. That means that you are going to be heavily invested on how comfortable this fitness tracker is, or isn’t. Always check reviews to make sure that the tracker is lightweight and comfortable.
As we mentioned before, fitness trackers are going to be attached to you for days, weeks, months etc. This means that they need to be highly durable. A fitness tracker that breaks the first time you accidentally smash your arm into a door is not going to be worth purchasing.
What Data It Collects
Step count, heart rate, sleep cycles, distance travelled, calories burned etc. What data your fitness tracker collects and doesn’t collect is an important consideration. This ties in with how accurate it is (see above).
Value For Money
When we talk about value for money we do not necessarily mean the price. You can get very cheap fitness trackers that outperform their price tag and are therefore fantastic value for money. You can also get very cheap fitness trackers that are completely useless! Same goes for expensive fitness trackers. It’s about whether the price represents value for you the customer or not.
Like it or not, fitness trackers are a fashion statement. People will see them, they will need to fit your fashion sense and personal style. If the fitness tracker works great but looks ugly, avoid it. Because that ugly tracker will ruin every outfit you ever wear.
We’ve taken a look at five of the best fitness trackers without screens. Each one has its charms, but our favourite has to be the Amazon Halo band. Not only is it well made and inexpensive, but it outperforms the market in many ways.
The sleep cycle is great, the strap is comfortable and durable, it has an excellent battery life, and it has great features such as heart rate monitoring and body fat analysis. It may not be perfect, and many people will be put off by the monthly membership costs, but 1) the membership is not compulsory, and 2) it is a bargain price.
That being said, the Fitbit Flex 2 runs it close, with an amazing design and great value for money. We also have a special spot for the Bellabeat Leaf, which is a great option for any woman.