How to Spot Fake Rolex Submariner

How to Spot Fake Rolex Submariner

The Rolex Submariner was originally released in 1954 and became an iconic time piece. The watch was originally advertised as a tool for divers. When trends shifted to more affordable options, Rolex leaned into the history and sophistication of mechanical watches and oriented themselves as a luxury brand. Today, the Rolex Submariner is considered a timeless, identifying pillar of Rolex and a symbol of wealth.

Among various popular Rolex watches, the Submariner is considered an “investment piece” because the low supply and high demand increases the watch’s value over time. So, it’s completely understandable that if you’ve managed to find a Submariner for yourself you want to make sure it’s legit.

Below, we guide you in how to check if your Rolex Submariner is fake based on the piece’s anatomy.

How to legit check Rolex Submariner?

The Overall Look Method

how to spot a real rolex

As a historic, luxury brand, the quality of Rolexes really comes down to the fine, subtle details. Glaring indicators of fake Rolex watches are discolored metals, incorrect spelling on the dial text, and gaps or spacing between watch fixtures (bezel to base, solid end links, etc.).

The Bezel Method

how do you tell if it is a real Rolex Submariner

The rotating bezel is one of the defining characteristics of the Rolex Submariner diving watch and a great place to start your Rolex authentication. Turn your watch on its side and look at the “sandwich” of the crystal case, bezel, base, and bottom casing.

An authentic Rolex Submariner has a condensed, flatter look on top. The bezel sits seamlessly in the base, and the crystal casing on top is flat. A fake Rolex Submariner might have a slight gap between the bezel and the casing and the crystal on top might curve slightly to form a subtle dome look.



The Pip Method

How Do you Spot a Fake Rolex Submariner

An easy way to spot a fake Rolex Submariner is if the pip is off center and discolored. An authentic Rolex Submariner pip is located at the 12 o’clock position inside an upside-down triangle, is pearly white in color, and outlined with white gold. No matter the color combination of your particular Submariner (black and gold, black and platinum, blue and gold, etc.) the pip should be a clean, white, subtle accent.

Don't have the time to legit check your watch? Check out our luxury watch authentication service.

The Minute and Second Markers Method

How to Authenticate Rolex Submariner

You can authenticate a Rolex Submariner by looking at the minute and second markers. An authentic Rolex Submariner has platinum inlays for the minute markers. The edges are clean, the color is subtle and metallic, and the lettering is slim and sophisticated. Similarly, the second markers are slim and subtle.

A fake Rolex Submariner will have painted minute and second markers. They’re often too bright, looking white instead of metallic. If you magnify the minute markers, the edges typically degrade over time, creating a rough look.

The Bezel Rotation Method

You can tell real vs fake Rolex Submariner watches by evaluating the bezel rotation. An authentic Rolex Submariner bezel emits a softer clicking sound when rotated, with no back play. If you experience a loud, harsh clicking during rotation or slight back play, that indicates a possible fake Rolex Submariner.

The Crystal Casing Method

One of the subtle markers of a genuine Rolex is the small crown etched into the sapphire crystal at the 6 o’clock position. The detail is subtle enough that it’s easy to miss. Angle your Rolex toward a light source. If you do not see the Rolex crown etched into the sapphire crystal, then you certainly have a fake Rolex Submariner.


3 easy steps to authenticate an item

Upload photos of the item

Place your order

We verify the item

You get the outcome

3 easy steps to authenticate an item

Planning on getting an item? Having doubts on an item you already have?

Trusted by:
customers and business around the world

Featured with:


How Can I Check a Rolex Serial Number: The Rehaut Engravings Method

How Can I Check a Rolex Serial Number

The rehaut is an inner metal ring that separates the watch crystal from the dial and is where you can check the serial number of your Rolex watch.

An authentic Rolex Submariner will have perfectly positioned, subtle engravings around the entirety of the rehaut. The word Rolex is repeated along the circumference with 2 disruptions. First, the Rolex crown should be engraved at the 12 o’clock position. Second, the Rolex serial number should be engraved at the bottom of the rehaut, centered at the 6 o’clock position. This placement is similar to the stamp placement on the Cartier Juste Un Clou Bracelet.

An empty rehaut, or a rehaut without a serial number or an off-center Rolex Crown is an easy tell for a fake Rolex Submariner watches. The engravings on a fake Rolex watches are often too visible, taking away from the subtlety of the detailing. 

The Date Window Method

Verify the Authenticity of a Rolex Submariner Watch

You can verify the authenticity of your Rolex Submariner by looking closely at the date window. An authentic Rolex Submariner “cyclops” showcases the date with 2.5 magnification. The date itself is represented by slim, evenly spaced black text.

A replica Rolex Submariner watch can have a cyclops that does not magnify the date. The date itself might appear thick or “bubbly” and the numbers are often too close together. 

The Crown Method

Rolex Submariner Authentication

The watch crown on a Rolex Submariner controls the movement of the watch hands and seals the casing, making it water resistant. An authentic Rolex crown has 3 positions: to start time, to change time, and to change the date. When rotated clockwise, an authentic Rolex crown will move time forward (and counterclockwise will move it backward).

Some fake Rolex watches have the reverse movement. The rotation itself feels smooth and effortless on an authentic Rolex Submariner. If you experience resistance or clicking with the interior movement, that might be an indication of a fake Rolex Submariner. 

The Watch Band Method

Rolex watches are made with 904L steel, and the watch band is where you can truly see and feel the quality of this silky, signature material. You can tell a real vs fake Rolex Submariner from the solid end links, the clasp engravings, and the glide lock.

Solid end links connect the watch band to the time piece. A real Rolex Submariner will have pristine SELs with no gaps or movement. 

The band clasp will have text printed on the inside. Clean, thin lines are characteristic of authentic Rolex Submariner clasps (similar to that of the Hermes Clic H Bracelet) and not too hard for replica makers to copy. However, the “ROLEXSA” text on the smaller part of the clasp proves to be difficult to replicate. Authentic text is evenly spaced and clear without discoloration.

Finally, the glide lock on a real Rolex Submariner will be smooth and easy to adjust while replicas might feel rough or give resistance.


Why authenticate with LegitGrails?

  • Expert team authentication in less than 30 minutes

  • Trusted by reselling stores & 80.000+ clients worldwide

  • Featured on Forbes, NiceKicks and more

  • Authenticity Certificate included

  • Full customer protection guaranteed


How Much Does a Rolex Submariner Cost?

An authentic Rolex Submariner costs between $8,000 to $40,000.

Are Second Hand Rolex Worth it?

The primary benefit of buying a certified second-hand Rolex watch is that it’s yours once you make the purchase. You can start wearing it immediately. Given that Rolexes are produced in small batches, when you purchase a brand-new Rolex, you might end up waiting a few years before you actually have it in your hands. 

With that being said, you might consider your intention with your Rolex purchase. As a historic brand that increases in value over time, it’s not uncommon for Rolex watches to become family artifacts, passed down through generations. A second-hand watch will have started the journey outside of your family. If that’s something you intend to do with your watch, and the sole ownership is important to you, then the wait might be worth it in the end.

Where Can I Get My Rolex Submariner Authenticated?

Now that you’ve read our authentication guide, you might consider getting an extra set of expert eyes on your Rolex Submariner watch. Our team at LegitGrails are experts in spotting fake Rolex watches and can legit check your watch in the shortest amount of time. Check it out: Rolex Submariner Authentication.


3 easy steps to authenticate an item

Upload photos of the item

Place your order

We verify the item

You get the outcome

3 easy steps to authenticate an item

Planning on getting an item? Having doubts on an item you already have?

Trusted by:
customers and business around the world

Featured with:


Related Posts

Translation missing: en.general.cookie_form.cookie_text Translation missing: en.general.cookie_form.read_more