Fitbit Luxe second opinion: Fashion and fitness can coexist

Fitbit Luxe Watch Face
Fitbit Luxe Watch Face (Image credit: Courtney Lynch / Android Central)

If you've ever dabbled in Fitbit's ecosystem, you might've noticed the new Luxe fitness tracker is somewhat of a departure from the company's usual suspects. Above all else, the Fitbit Luxe is focused on offering a compact, versatile design that's suitable for all occasions.

While Fitbit is not exclusively marketing the Luxe as a product made only for women, that's certainly the intended audience. After all, this tracker does offer a rather sleek and feminine aesthetic that many women will appreciate.

With that said, the Fitbit Luxe is an excellent companion for anyone who doesn't want to sacrifice form for function. If that sounds like you, then you may very well fall head over heels for this stunning device. You'll still get your fair share of health and fitness tracking features, too. It's not nearly as robust as the Charge 4 or the Versa 3, but it does a solid job of handling the basics.

It's all in the details

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Most users will be drawn to the Fitbit Luxe for its captivating design. This is a great alternative if you don't want to spend the extra money on a women's smartwatch. Many fitness trackers offer a basic and sometimes bland design that leaves much to be desired, but that's not the case here.

Health enthusiasts who also love to accessorize and match their jewelry choices to their outfits will have the best of both worlds with the Fitbit Luxe. Upon first glance, some people might mistake this tracker for a piece of jewelry. Fitbit went with a "modern take on traditional jewelry-making techniques using an innovative design process called metal injection molding to create Luxe's stainless steel case."

I was pleasantly surprised by the durability factor of the Fitbit Luxe.

Additionally, a metal vaporizing technique was used on the elegant gold and platinum finishes to deliver a premium look and feel. When I first opened the box, I was a bit worried about how well this tracker would hold up during workouts and daily wear. It's definitely fancy, but I was pleasantly surprised by the durability factor of the Fitbit Luxe. Basic tasks like doing dishes and showering didn't result in any damage thanks to the 5ATM water-resistance rating.

The Fitbit Luxe bands are interchangeable, so if you're not sold on the silicone bands that come with the tracker, you can always change them. I wish it was a more user-friendly band system, but it can be a bit tricky. It's a new system, so no other Fitbit tracker bands will work. Fortunately, there are enough third-party options to pick from that this shouldn't be an issue.

I appreciated not having to put so much thought into whether my tracker was an acceptable accessory choice on any given day. I attended a formal birthday dinner last month, and the Fitbit Luxe was the perfect companion for my wrist. If I had been wearing something a bit bulkier and masculine-looking such as the Garmin Forerunner 55, I might need to think twice about swapping it out.

The bright display is just as stunning as the rest of the tracker.

You get a bright AMOLED screen that's crisp and clear. The bright display is just as stunning as the rest of the tracker. As someone who's worn bifocals for more than half my life, I still had to squint to decipher the tiny text from time to time.

When a notification comes in, you only get so much information given just how small the display is. You won't have any physical buttons, so all the navigating is done on the touchscreen. This can be tricky with sweaty fingertips during a workout.

Despite its brilliant display, the Fitbit Luxe can still manage to squeeze out about 5 days of battery life depending on your usage. This isn't too bad, but these days, many cheaper trackers are offering 2+ weeks of battery life. Hopefully, any future Luxe models will come bearing battery life.

Detailed tracking can be enough

Fitbit Luxe Activity Summary

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One of the biggest benefits of buying the Fitbit Luxe is that new and returning customers get access to a free 6-month trial of Fitbit Premium. After the trial ends, Fitbit Premium will cost members $9.99 per month, or you can pay or an annual subscription for $79.99.

Fitbit Premium offers a detailed stress management score, deeper sleep analytics, and over 200 audio/video workouts.

While some users may prefer to skip out on the paid subscription, the 6-month trial might sell you on it. Fitbit Premium offers a detailed stress management score, deeper sleep analytics, and over 200 audio/video workouts. You'll also have access to nearly 200 mindfulness sessions to help you better manage stress. These include sessions from Deepak Chopra, Ten Percent Happier, Aura, and more.

The Health Metrics dashboard is a standard feature, but with Fitbit Premium, you can track your monthly trends and personal ranges. You'll also be alerted when one of your metrics is out of range. Premium members will also have access to 60+ new pieces of nutrition content, which includes curated healthy recipes from Fitbit and EatingWell.

Those who are casually tracking their health and fitness might not find these extra perks to be all that appealing. However, if you're committed to getting the full picture of your health and wellness so you can make necessary improvements, Fitbit Premium will be worth the monthly subscription.

Fitbit Luxe Workout

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The Fitbit Luxe offers 20 goal-based exercise modes.

As for standard features, the Fitbit Luxe offers 20 goal-based exercise modes, advanced sleep monitoring with a sleep score, heart-rate tracking, stress monitoring, Cardio Fitness Score, female health-tracking, and more.

You can choose up to 6 customizable exercises to store as shortcuts on your device. This can be done right from your device, but it's easier to do from the Fitbit app. Some of the popular options include walking, running, biking, yoga, treadmill, weights, swimming, elliptical, spinning, circuit training, hiking, and more.

You'll be able to track your real-time pace and distance for walks, bikes, and outdoor runs with your phone's connected GPS. The data on the screen during a workout is limited to one metric at a time, so you'll have to swipe through to view a specific metric. This can be a bit tedious when you're in the zone, so you're better off reviewing a breakdown of your stats when the workout is complete.

I particularly enjoyed using Active Zone Minutes, which is a fairly new feature across many Fitbit wearables. This feature helps you track your minutes spent in each heart rate zone. You'll know when it's time to push harder during an activity. Active Zone Minutes helps make your workouts more efficient while monitoring your progress toward reaching your weekly goal of 150 Active Zone Minutes for improved heart health.

It was very convenient to have quick and easy access to relax guided breathing sessions. While they're not nearly as detailed as the mindfulness sessions you get with Premium, they get the job done. If you notice your resting heart rate (RHR) is unusually high, try a guided breathing session to bring your heart rate down.

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Another feature I found useful is Cardio Fitness Score or VO2 Max.

Another feature I found useful is Cardio Fitness Score or VO2 Max. If you're not familiar, this metric refers to the maximum amount of oxygen you can utilize during an intense workout. If you're trying to improve your performance, you'll benefit from this perk. Tap the heart rate tile on the Fitbit app to view your RHR graph. Swipe right and you'll receive your detailed Cardio Fitness Score.

This personalized score is determined by your resting heart rate, weight, age, gender, and other personal data. On the Fitbit app, you can see how your score compares to others in your age group. I landed in the fair to average range, which felt accurate. There are also recommendations for how to improve your score. My recommendation for improvement was to increase the intensity of my workouts.

Some other health features include skin temperature tracking and blood oxygen (SpO2) monitoring. According to Fitbit, the latter will be available soon. You'll be able to cover sudden changes to your health by tracking your skin temperature variation, which could potentially indicate fever or illness.

When it becomes available, the SpO2 sensor will help you monitor the levels of oxygen in your blood, which can alert you to changes to your overall health and wellness. I have grown accustomed to having this feature on my other wearables, so it'll be nice to take advantage of this data when the sensor is eventually activated.

Very few extras

Fitbit Luxe Notifications

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Don't expect a boatload of extra features from the Fitbit Luxe and you won't be disappointed. Aside from smartphone notifications, timer/stopwatch, sleep mode, do not disturb mode, and silent alarms, there's not a whole lot to talk about. Many other trackers (and watches) at this price point at least offer music controls or storage, but not the Luxe.

When asked about this choice, Fitbit stated that the main audience for this device valued other features more. As a result, the decision was made to prioritize other needs, such as "creating a sleek device that's equal parts fashion accessory and wellness tracker."

I find the lack of music controls to be an oversight on Fitbit's part.

While I can somewhat understand this reasoning, even budget-friendly fitness trackers, like the Xiaomi Mi Band 5 and Honor Band 5, have managed to offer basic music controls. Considering these trackers are available for a fraction of the price of the Luxe, I find the lack of music controls to be an oversight on Fitbit's part.

Any other extras you might be looking for are not available on the Fitbit Luxe, like onboard GPS and NFC payments, for example. You might find these omissions to be fair considering this tracker's main goal is to be fashionable while also monitoring your health and fitness. With that said, there are devices available in this price range that will provide you with these features.

How much are you willing to pay for a fashionable tracker?

Fitbit Luxe Wrist

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The one question you may find yourself asking is how much money are you willing to spend on a fashion-forward fitness tracker that offers basic activity and health tracking? If you've been searching for a device that will serve as a gorgeous piece of jewelry while also monitoring key aspects of your well-being, the price may not be a problem for you.

On the other hand, those of us who are accustomed to our wearables offering a few extra perks here and there might be left wanting more. As I mentioned, there are other options to consider at this price point that offer some extra features. If you're not finding the Luxe's feature set to be worth the price tag, you might be better off upgrading to an Android smartwatch instead.

Fitbit's own Charge 4 is cheaper than the Luxe and will give you music controls, Fitbit Pay, and onboard GPS. Is it anywhere near as luxurious as the Luxe? Absolutely not. You'll have to choose what's more important to you: features or fashion? I can't say that I would spend $150 on this tracker, but those who want features and fashion may not mind the price tag.

Bearing all of this in mind, the Fitbit Luxe has achieved its goal of being a fashion-forward fitness and wellness tracker that supports your health goals. It's a one-of-a-kind device that stands out from other options on the market. You won't have to worry about having a mediocre design or limited health/fitness tracking perks. If luxurious style plus detailed tracking is your ideal combination of features, the Fitbit Luxe will be worth every penny.

Courtney Lynch

Courtney Lynch is a freelance writer at Android Central. She's obsessed with all things health, fitness, and music. At any given time, she can be found checking out the latest and greatest gadgets while simultaneously petting her dog and sipping iced coffee.