How Can I Tell If My Rolex Is Genuine?

Updated April 17, 2017

Rolex watches are internationally known for their style and luxury status. Because of this, there are many replica watches on the market that are not authentic. Check your Rolex for these small clues that will help you identify a genuine Rolex from a replica.

Examine the weight and quality of the watch. A real Rolex will be relatively heavy. Examine the engraved serial number, lettering and Rolex name under a magnifying glass to ensure the engravings are clearly cut and even. The links in the watch band should be full and not hollow.

Look at the caseback. Rolex has never made a watch with a clear caseback, which is the area behind the face of the watch that lies against your wrist. Clear casebacks allow you to see the inner workings of the watch. Many fake Rolexes have clear casebacks. The caseback should not have any engraved lettering or logos. Real Rolexes come with a hologram sticker on the caseback that appears different when viewed at different angles. Fake Rolexes will either not have the sticker or have a sticker that is not a hologram.

Look on the watch face where the date is displayed. There should be a bubble around the date that is made of crystal and magnifies the date 2.5 times. Fake Rolexes sometimes have an off-centre bubble that is made of glass. In addition, the magnification is not always 2.5 times.

Examine the crystal of the face under a magnifying glass. Just under the 6, there should be an etched Rolex logo. The Rolex logo is a pointed crown symbol. This detail is often hard to detect and very difficult for counterfeiters to duplicate. These etchings are only on Rolexes made after 2002, so if it is an older model, this will not be present.

Look at the movement of the second hand. A signature feature of Rolex watches is the continuous movement of the second hand. It should appear as if it is gliding, not ticking.

Smear a drop of water on the face's surface. It should pull together in a bead on the sapphire crystal surface of a genuine Rolex. If it smears across the surface, it may not be real crystal.

Things You'll Need

  • Rolex or Rolex replica
  • Magnifying glass
  • Drop of water
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About the Author

Lottie Goff became a fulltime professional journalist in 2005. She has written freelance content for "Space City Spors" in Houston, Texas and "Coast Magazine" in Galveston, Texas. She earned a journalism degree from Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas in 2005. She also worked for the student newspaper, "The Battalion," from 2003 to 2005.