Rolex Rolesor: What Does It Mean?

Rolex Rolesor: What Does It Mean?

Whether you’re a Rolex fan or not, you’ve probably come across the highly-recognizable half gold and half steel watch. In watch circles, this is simply known as the “two-tone” watch, but Rolex being Rolex, they call this particular style the “Rolesor”.


Why does Rolex have a special name for it? And what counts as a Rolesor watch? Here’s what every watch fan should know about the term:


Datejust II
Rolex Datejust II in Steel and Yellow Gold

What is a Rolesor watch?

Rolesor is Rolex’s term for their half gold, half steel watches. Stainless steel is used on the watch case and the bracelet’s outer links, while 18k gold is used on the bezel, crown and the bracelet’s center links. It applies to all watches that combine steel and 18k gold – whether it’s yellow, pink or white gold.

However, as white gold is aesthetically similar to steel, a white gold Rolesor only uses gold on the bezel to make it stand out.



Yachtmaster Datejust and Daytona
Rolex Yacht-Master, Datejust 36 and Cosmograph Daytona in Steel and Yellow Gold

History of the Rolesor

Rolex patented the term Rolesor way back in 1933. It’s considered a true Rolex signature, whose design DNA intended to combine the strength and reliability of steel, with the luster and nobility of gold. Today, it is one of the pillars of the Oyster collection.

The term Rolesor is taken from combining “Rolex”, with the French word “or”, which means gold. After the patent, Rolex has used the attractive combination on its most popular collections:

1948 – the Rolesor style makes its first outing on the Rolex Oyster Perpetual Datejust. Until today, the steel and gold aesthetic is what many have in mind when one says “Datejust”.


Rolex Yacht-Master in Steel and Everose Gold

2011 – they offer the latest version of the Rolesor: the pink Rolesor. It combines their patented pink gold alloy Everose with stainless steel. It was first used on the Yacht-Master and now appears in the Datejust and GMT-Master II lines.

2018 – Rolex begins to use the term “Oystersteel” for the 904L stainless steel that they use on their watches. The term Rolesor then becomes the union of Oystersteel and 18k yellow, white or pink gold.



Rolex Yacht-Master models in Stainless Steel and Platinum

Rolesor vs Rolesium: What’s the Difference?

Another two-tone design that Rolex manufactures is the combination of gold with platinum, which is used by the brand on their newer Yacht-Master 40 and Yacht-Master II pieces.

Whereas Rolesor refers to the union of steel and gold, “Rolesium” is the term used when they combine the rugged stainless steel with the exquisite platinum. The combination of these two white metals create a monochromatic look; but their different textures still add character to the timepiece.

All these truly prove that Rolex rigorously selects the materials of their watches. The next time you scout for a Rolex watch, you can now spot a Rolesor or a Rolesium, with confidence.





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