Have Apple Watch Skin Burns? Here’s What to Do.


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I don’t know if you’ve heard, but some users have been complaining about Apple Watch skin burns and/or rashes. The first cases were reported as early as late 2015, but it seems that #RashGate isn’t over.

Yes, I went there. Now move along.

Some users have taken to social media, talking about the skin burns/rashes.

Some tweets have no photos, but definitely show the level of dissatisfaction.

I do love a good pun, though.

In all seriousness, Apple Watch skin burns are no joke, but the device is not the only wearable that can cause rashes and burns. Fitbit had the same issue as well.

So what are you supposed to do if you get skin irritation due to Apple Watch?

Apple has a dedicated page for this: “Wearing Apple Watch“.

The main points are common sense, really. As with any watch, you need to make sure it fits well and is cleaned regularly. Also, some people are naturally allergic to certain materials, which may have been used in Apple Watch.

The page mentions Nickel and Methacrylates, which may cause the rashes.

Apple Watch, the space gray and rose gold aluminum Apple Watch Sport, the stainless steel portions of some Apple Watch bands, and the magnets in the watch and bands contain some nickel. However, they all fall below the strict nickel restrictions set by European REACh regulation. Therefore, while nickel exposure is unlikely to be a problem, you should be aware of the possibility in case you’re susceptible to nickel-related reactions.

Interesting that emphasized part is, isn’t it?

There doesn’t seem to be any solution offered by Apple, except for replacing units entirely.

Apple Watch owners, do you have this problem?

You might also want to read: A Week Without My Apple Watch


Noemi

Freelance writer; digital hobo; professional nap-taker; wannabe beach bum; seeker. SHINY!

53 Comments

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  1. My 14 year old daughter was recently burnt by an Apple Watch. I took her to the hospital and the doctor diagnose it as a 1st degree burn. I have an open case with Apple because of this. They keep asking for pictures. I have sent them everything they have asked for. But still no compensation for the hospital bills and the prescription plus pain and suffering. So I am getting a lawyer

    1. Today out of the blue I felt a burning sensation under my watch (I have had it for over 6 months and no issues). I took my Apple Watch off and had a huge burn blister from where the watch was sitting on. Very hesitant to wear it again!

    2. I have an open case because of my Series 2 overheating and burned my arm as well. I have not been compensated either.

    3. I was burnt by my watch too. Called in and told them. They noted that the watch was hot. I told them that is deceiving you never wrote it burnt me. You purposely tried to cover it up. Worse Mother’s Day gift. All they told me is ok let us send it out. There so big they don’t care.

    4. What state are you located in? I think that we’d need a class action law suit. I also have pictures, but never went to the doctors because I automatically knew it was a burn due to the watch after looking on the internet.

  2. Owned a series 3 and a burn mark as big a an Australian 2 cent coin, on my wrist in wearing it for the very first time a total of fifteen hours.
    Contacted Apple but their technician in NZ I spoke to didn’t even know about this on going problem, he was going to ask. Pity they don’t tell the truth in the first place.

    I found quite a raft of customer complaints in relation to this dreadful experience, just googling it. Apple just don’t want to know.

    Mine is only 24 hours old, it’s going back.

  3. My Apple Watch Series 4 just shocked / burned me leaving half my arm with a rash and swelling. Have photos and doctors reports.

    Awful that they are not owning this issue.

    1. My wife susstained a 3rd deggere burn from here watch
      Apple refused any responsibillity
      Have you gone any further with this
      Dave

  4. I always use my s2 since a year ago but know In my hand skin I feel like if sun is burning it even at night…. so I,m thinking if the sensor is causing me some damage in my hole hand … does anybody feels this sensation too?

  5. I’m having the same problem and on speaking to Apple apparently I’m the ‘only one’ ..
    I’m in the UK and still waiting after two weeks for Apple support to get back to me.

  6. OMG!! Just reading all of this! My Series 3 stung/burned me on Saturday (I’ve owned it 9 months). Took it off immediately and took it to the Apple Store. After an “interrogation” they kept the watch and “escalated” my “claim”. I heard nothing for two full days. Got a call yesterday from someone out of state asking, yet more, questions and requesting photos. He assured me that he’d get this taken care of. Today I received an email from the store telling me my watch was “ready for pickup.” When I called I was told that the advisor had determined that there was nothing wrong with the watch and that they would be returning it to me as is. It was only just now that I decided to see if there were others out there that had experienced this. I am stunned and very disappointed that Apple has taken this position. Not sure what to do now….certainly don’t want my watch back…not like I can wear it….

  7. My Series 3 just started to burn me. I started wearing it at night (to get sleep metrics) and I am using it more for workouts that lasts approximately 2 hours on average. I believe it’s the light that burns and not the band material as the burn is not around the entire arm where the band touches the skin. I’m concluding the increased use caused it to burn.

  8. I wore my apple watch for a year and one night I forgot to take it off my wrist and the next morning when I woke up I had a big a blister on my wrist where the apple watch sits it.

  9. Same problem here with my Series 4 rose gold, cloth band. Right from the start, if I wear it for an entire day, I get a bright red burn spot the exact size of the watch back that peels just like a sunburn within a couple of days. I’m very fair-skinned so do realize I may be more prone to skin issues but this still does not seem normal for a watch product. I’m more concerned about overall health ramifications of these burns since there are supposedly safe levels of radiation emitted by the signal that connects to the iPhone/internet. I wish we knew more about the safety of these devices and any long term effects of the apparently fairly common burns and rashes.

  10. The problem I had several years ago with my watch was not rash or skin irritation. It was the burns directly under the watch. After a few months of wearing , I had four holes, yes, holes burnt through my skin. The location of the four holes was the same as the holes in the back of the watch. Apple was very good at reimbursing me for the watch. I am just checking to see if someone else had those burnt holes on their wrist or has Apple figured out what was wrong and fixed it. I want to buy anew one if that problem is gone.

  11. I bought a series 5 stainless watch a week ago. I immediately had what I considered abnormal battery drain issues, so I tried turning off a lot of the notifications and most of the new selling features like always on and wrist raise to try to stop the battery drain to no avail. On the third night of wearing it, I was driving home when my wrist started burning like crazy. It took me a minute to realize it was the watch. When I got home discovered a burn that blistered over the next several hours. The blister matches up perfectly where LED touches my wrist. Needless to say I haven’t worn it since. I’ve spent too many hours at the apple store and on the phone with apple trying to resolve…they’ve been really crappy. Because I had called apple by phone, the store pretty much packed up the watch and sent me on my way. When I asked the store about returning it for refund, the guy helping me said I’d have to deal with the advisor that was now in charge of my “case.“ I’m letting them go through their “investigation” and done everything they’ve asked (uploaded photos of my wrist, given them access to diagnostics), but so far It’s been slow going and they’re telling me nothing is wrong with the watch. I love the work out feature, health tracking, heart monitor, etc. . One other thing that was strange with the watch…I downloaded some of my music onto it so I could go walking and not bring the phone and when using my air buds, the watch would only play the airbuds at one level, whether I turned the sound all the way down to all the way up on the watch. At first I was convinced I had a dud watch…But in reading these comments, this watch just doesn’t sound healthy. My gut is telling me to return it and be done with it.

  12. Same problem. I have the Apple iwatch series 2. I’ve had it for years and it’s never been a problem until recent days. I noticed my skin itches underneath my watch and when I took it off, I saw four circles where the watch contacted my skin. I took it off for days and it continued to developers into an itchy rash that swelled and was quite painful. Two days later, I am left with what looks like a circular burn on my wrist. I’ve been documenting in photos, but the burn mark looks pretty nasty.

  13. My Apple 3 burned my wrist blisters directly under the led lights they did nothing to help. They put it all on me and said it was my problem maybe a sensitivity issue. I am furious about this and will be sure to slam them online. What a scam!

  14. I have the same issue, 3 burns directly under the led lights. Apple says that after 3 years of wearing the watch I have suddenly developed an allergy! No apology, no reimbursement just a total run-around and CYA from Apple while I’m sitting here with visible burn marks on my wrist weeks after I stopped wearing the watch.

  15. I have apple watch series 3 sensor burn on my wrist too. The watch isn’t hot but my skin got the burn mark and hot sensation .

  16. It’s the corrosion on the back side of the post. I removed the post and used a roto tool to remove the corrosion. It is important to clean and/ or dry under the watch band (especially the round metal post). No issues since identifying the reason for the skin irritation.

  17. I wonder why the media has not picked up on this. It is a wide-spread problem as shown in these replies. Apple does not warn of this problem in any of its marketing materials… and it should.

  18. My son’s wrist has just been burnt. The watch, series 4 is brand new, not even a month old. I’m furious, he has been screaming from pain.

  19. My apple 4 watch blistered my wrist last week !
    After reading all these it seems rather obviously there is an issue with these watches
    Apple you need to address this, people need to know it can happen!

  20. I just got a burn from my watch as well
    What is going on?
    I’m a nurse and can’t avoid to have my hands wrist healthy a burn is dangerous with all the hospital germs etc
    What is everyone doing about this problem?
    I’m taking pictures of my burn in case there is a class action suit

  21. This happened to me over a year ago. I took my watch to the Apple Store. They kept it “to investigate” and I received a call a couple days later from someone out of state to “take my statement”. He requested photos, which I sent to him. I got a call a couple of days later from the Apple Store to come pick up my watch. I called and asked if I was picking up a replacement watch and was told that after the investigation (by someone who never even saw my arm) it was determined that there was nothing wrong with the watch. I went to pick up the watch (knowing there would be some sort of class action later) and they almost didn’t give me my watch back. They wanted me to sign something, which I refused to do. Luckily the guy had already handed me my watch and he then demanded it back. I walked out…with my watch.

  22. Same thing happened to me, burns on my wrist that lasted for weeks after I removed the watch, Apple determined it was nothing to do with the watch and returned it to me. I now have a Samsung watch and phone, I’m done with Apple!

  23. This morning I woke up with burns under my Apple Watch. I wear it at night to help track my heart rate. One of the burns is large, and has now formed a blister. This is very concerning to me, as I see no one is getting help from Apple about it. Does anyone have any answers?

  24. I have had the same thing happen to me with my series 4 Apple Watch. I recently wore it all night, for the first time, and woke up with a bright red burn circle, at the exact same spot where my watch’s magnetic charging circle, on the back of the watch. I have taken several photos, as the burn progressed through it’s stages, including peeling.
    After reading all these stories, I realize my issue is not unique, and that there is no use for me to contact Apple, as it seems they choose to take no responsibility for this issue. I would like to be included if a Class Action Suit Case is brought against Apple.

  25. Last night I was about to fall asleep and felt a terrible burning sensation under the round clip on the pink band of the Apple Watch 5 I’ve had for a few months. It was dark so I couldn’t see what was going on but each time I touched under the band in that area of my wrist, the pain was exponential! I removed the watch, and without my glasses on, turned on enough light to see a mark under the area of the clip. I couldn’t figure it out. I put the watch on my right wrist (I like to get the sleep metrics so wear it at night), and after awhile the burning feeling died down if I didn’t touch it. In the morning, where the pain and burning had been the night before, I could see a raised bump size of the little metal clip back, and like a flat blister (like a blister that had opened and since lost its juices and was starting to dry and heal). I checked the web and saw that the metal part might have low level of nickel, though I’ve never had a problem with any other watches, or metals, so not sure if I suddenly and instantly got an allergy to nickel! Very strange. Put a bandaid over it and may or may not wear the watch on that wrist today. Going to allergist tomorrow for my seasonal allergies and will ask about that.

  26. Same problem with series 3. I have wore this watch for almost a year and a half no issues. Last Thursday night I felt a skin iteration under my watch. Took off my I watch and I have a burn mark in the perfect circle where it hits my skin. Very disappointed Apple knows about this and still makes no effort to correct it. I have taken photos as well of my wrist.

  27. I had a huge burn on my wrist as well from my Series4. It was definitely the watch and NOT the band. I called Apple but they were worse than useless. However I came up with a fix on my own and I’d like to pass that along. I used non-reactive hospital tape for 2 months on the back of the watch. I changed it four times and wiped any gunk off the back of the watch. After two months the burn was gone though I have a slight discoloration of my skin where the burn occurred. I am sure that you would like to know that I wore and charged my watch as usual with the tape affixed morning and night. I never took it off except to put on fresh tape which I cut to exact size. I used two pieces with a tiny separation just to give the back of the watch some breathing room if it needed it. It did not seem to matter but once I started with two pieces, I just continued with it. After the burn disappeared I resumed wearing my watch as usual.

    So, first, this is not permanent and will not void your warranty. Secondly, it is very effective and the watch charges and runs ALL apps as usual. It gave my wrist a good chance to heal. Third, my burn was NOT minor. It was a huge square on my wrist that exactly matched the back of my 44mm watch. Fourth, I have now been wearing the watch again without tape constantly for at least 2 months with no repetition of the burn.

    Iris

  28. I have an Elf 2 and it burns my arm that it is on, have tried both arms, now both arms have small burn marks, right arm today has semi circular burn with small blister at bottom of semi circle. Also surprised no one is picking this up on news.

  29. I just looked to see if anyone else had a burn from their Apple Watch. I was surprised to see others have this problem. I have a red blister/burn from the back of the watch where the light shines thru. I can’t believe Apple has not acknowledged this issue. I loved this watch but now am afraid to wear this. Apple should make their customers aware of this problem.

  30. I have the Apple Watch 4 and my arm is burned under where the watch is. I’m sorry I didn’t find this group before I bought it. Doesn’t seem like much will be done about it from reading this list.

  31. I have a series 5 44mm that I bought in November 2019. I’ve been wearing it nearly constantly, including sleeping with it for my AutoSleep app. About two weeks ago I thought I had a bug bite under my watch, it itches and I scratched it, but it didn’t get better. Then I saw it’s a small, round burn hole that corresponds to the LED light/sensor that touches my skin. I’ve just now restarted the watch and turned off the “AlwaysOn” feature to see if that helps. If not, I’ll contact Apple.

  32. I also have gotten burned by my Apple Watch 4 , sent my watch in and they sent a replacement. No sorry this happened to or anything and was very rude to talking to Robert the Safety Specialist . They really should look into this problem. Glad I took pictures because I’m sure this isn’t the end of this. Terrible customer service ??

  33. I received my Apple Watch Series 3 only a couple of days ago. I wore the watch for 2 hours, took it off for a shower and put the watch on a couple of hours later to wear to bed for the first time.
    I woke up in the morning with a burn mark on my wrist. At first I thought maybe it was an allergic reaction which I thought was strange because I wear stainless jewellery etc and have never had an issue but as the day went on I realised it was a burn, it’s now blistering.
    I spoke to Apple yesturday and the senior advisor didn’t really care, he’s put my complaint to the engineers and I’m supposed to hear from him next week.. The senior advisor was dismissive of my complaint that it was a burn and kept saying perhaps it was an allergic reaction and even went to send me instructions on how to keep the watch clean and told me his experiences of sometimes having an allergic reaction. I know have a hideous burn mark on my wrist and an expensive watch I’m too scared to wear

  34. My iwatch 5 burned my wrist. Type 2 burn on both spots on my wrist. Not a cheap watch for a bad burns. Would send you pics but can’t upload.

  35. I’ve had my iWatch for 3.5 years and I was wearing it every day-it shows all my activity for the last 3+ years and I had enjoyed being a loyal iWatch customer. Two weeks ago, it left a burn under the watch that turned into a blister and went deep into my arm that will end up leaving a scar on my wrist. I had it diagnosed by my doctor and after 3 phone calls and escalations, Apple asked me what I wanted. Is anyone making any progress with their situation? This should be an awareness for anyone who buys an Aplle iWatch to know the possiblity of getting burned or possibly worse from this issue. BradleyGrombacher Lawfirm called me back and said they are not representing any class action lawsuits. SO, who is??

  36. I have a Apple 2 Watch space gray aluminum which I bought 3 years ago and wear it 16 hours a day everyday. Just last month I noticed a red scar type blister type burn on the top of my wrist the size and shape of the back of the watch. Took pictures and wonder is it safe to wear the watch? Will they replace it? Will this mark / burn / scar go away? Is there a class action suit? Any and all answers / replicate appreciated.

  37. I’ve suffered an horrendous burn from my Apple watch series 3 which, has since peeled and scared. I initially thought may be due to the aluminium on the back of the watch. I love all the fitness and health tracking features on my Apple watch. So! I purchased a series 6 last week only to experience and even worse burn mark right around where the sensors are.

    I haven’t contacted Apple yet, and there doesn’t seem much point in doing so. I really like my Apple watch, but I can’t risk any further damage and possibly an infection due to a burn. So, it looks like I’ll be returning it (I purchased online and I’m still well within my 14 day return period) I live in the UK. Does anyone know if Apple are doing anything about this? Or if anyone has started legal proceedings? The Burn mark on my wrist is pretty bad and is definitely going to leave a permanent scar, Which isn’t something that I’m going to let drop. I now have to contact my GP first thing in the morning, who I will email photos of the burn too. After speaking with NHS 111 UK they advised to contact my GP ASAP and, depending on the severity of the burn my GP will probably prescribe steroids (Hydrocortisone) Or refer me for further treatment elsewhere. I will be contacting both trading standards, the Ombudsman and and relevant health and safety authority after speaking with my GP too.

    If anyone is aware of Apple actually doing anything about this, or anyone who’s started legal proceedings in the UK please reply here so we can contact each other to discuss this matter further.

    After I’ve sent my series 3 back I will be selling my iPhone too and switching to another brand if on principle alone. I just can’t believe how Apple are treating everyone who’s suffering from this issue. These burns from Apple watch are bad and will definitely leaves scars. I don’t want anything to do with a company that refuses to acknowledge something this serious.

  38. They don’t care at all, they just run you down with time consuming phone calls that go no where. My brand new series 3 watch burned me a few months ago after wearing it for the first time. They will simply send you on a wild goose chase. They will ask for pictures of the burn, pictures of the watch on your wrist to ensure it lines up and the medical certificate from the doctor proving the burn was from the watch. Once they have these details they will then request the watch be sent to their engineers in Ireland…. Then it will be sent to their head office in California. All while this is happening they will offer you “A BRAND NEW IN THE BOX WATCH” equal to the same value or a refund. They try to make it out like they are doing you a favour by offering this, never mind the ridiculous hours spent and stress of the whole process.
    I have spent hours and hours on the phone to them. The senior advisors are manipulative and incredibly condescending.
    I got no where with my complaint besides a scar and a new apple watch that is still in its box unopened because i don’t want to wear out of principle.

    Good luck!

  39. My wife just returned the Hermes Series 6 back to the Apple ship in the UK.
    She told the assistant she wanted a refund (it’s been 3-4 weeks now) and my wife was just pleased to get the refund. Now though she has blisters appearing and discomfort so I google this and find this site.
    So looking at some of the feedback it’s dates back years and still no remedy!!
    We are going to use our home insurance legal protection to speak to a lawyer and take it up with Apple.

  40. I purchased the Apple Watch Series 5 a couple of months ago. I’ve only started to wear it the past two weeks off and on but the watch itself really irritates the top portion of my wrist where the watch sits. There is no wrist irritation from the sports loop that I have, but only from the backside of the watch itself. I bathe regularly and try to keep my hands, wrists, and watch as clean as possible. But that still isn’t enough. An hour or two after wearing the watch the skin irritation starts up again. I take great care to insure that the watch is not snug fitting. And when I remove the watch there are always several bumps where the watch sat. The only way to knock a company as arrogant as Apple off of their high horse is to greatly hit them in their pocketbook by initiating a massive class action lawsuit. Maybe then they will take this issue seriously. It doesn’t take a genius to see that the nickel material used in Apple Watch is causing great irritation for many people.

  41. I had my series 3 watch for 1 1/2 years and wore it every day. Loved it. One day I put it on at 07:00 am, and at 09:30 I noticed blood running from my wrist. The watch had burned two holes to the bone. I felt nothing. I took the watch back to the Apple store and I was told to call Apple support. I sent photos and went through their interrogation. Apple did nothing. I never wore the watch again. The scary part is the holes healed, but two months later the two holes opened again. My Dr. ran blood tests which came back fine. Again after another two months the holes opened again. I am now booked to see a Dermatologist. You can see the radiation burns. My wrist is scarred and has an ugly red mark. The watch is extremely dangerous and they should be recalled. Does anyone know if there is a class action lawsuit in Canada?

  42. I’ve had my series 4 for about 1 1/2 years & just recently it burnt me really bad. I don’t wear it to bed. I took pictures & really miss wearing it but I don’t want to risk getting another burn. That expensive of a watch should not be having these issues! I am going to have a scar. Not happy at all. Want my money back & then some! Not sure what to do next. Sounds like Apple isn’t being very cooperative.

  43. My apple watch 3 burned me and I sent it to Apple for replacement. I sent the pictures of my wrist as well as the watch. They have informed me there is not Safety issue with the Series 3 watch and that technical says it is not a problem. They want $369.00 to repair a watch that burned their consumer. I just happened to google and see I am not the only one with the issue.

    Please make sure you go on to BBB and log your case:
    https://www.bbb.org/consumer-complaints/file-a-complaint/get-started
    Company: Apple
    Address: Apple Inc., located at 1 Apple Park Way in Cupertino, California