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ROLEX BLOG

The Ultimate Guide to Two Tone Rolex Watches

January 12, 2021

BY Paul Altieri

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Two-tone Rolex watches can be polarizing among watch wearers – some love them, while others can’t wrap their heads around the mixing of two different metals on one watch. As big fans of steel and gold Rolex watches, we’re squarely in the first camp.

Also, you may have heard that the Pantone Color Institute settled on not just one but two colors as its Color(s) of the Year for 2021. The two shades are called “Ultimate Grey” and “Illuminating” – and for watch enthusiasts, this is a familiar combination of cool grey and bright yellow, such as those found on two-tone timepieces. Therefore, sporting a stainless steel and yellow gold Rolex watch is not just a classic choice but perfectly in-sync with this year’s hottest color trend.

If you’re unsure about getting on board with the returning trend of two-tone luxury watches, then have a look at the selection of modern two-tone Rolex watches we’ve picked out for you below, which could very well sway you in the right direction.

Click here for our Ultimate Buying Guide on Rolex Watches.

 Steel and Gold Rolex Watches

Two-Tone Rolex Daytona 116523 Steel and Gold

What is Rolesor?

Rolex has been making two-tone steel and gold watches since the 1930s. In fact, it was in that decade that the company trademarked the name “Rolesor,” which is the official Rolex term for its watches that combine stainless steel and gold components on a single watch.

There are three types of Rolesor:

1. Yellow Rolesor: A combination of stainless steel and yellow gold

2. Everose Rolesor: A combination of stainless steel and Everose gold

3. White Rolesor: A stainless steel watch with a white gold bezel

You can distinguish which type of Rolesor a particular model is by looking at the reference number where the last digit indicates the material of the watch:

– Yellow Rolesor = 3 (as in ref. 126233)

– Everose Rolesor = 1 (as in ref. 126231)

– White Rolesor = 4 (as in ref. 126234)

In light of Pantone’s top color picks for 2021, we’ll be discussing Yellow Rolesor Rolex watches, which is our particular watch-focused interpretation of Pantone’s Ultimate Grey and Illuminating.

Rolex Datejust 41 Two-Tone

Two-Tone Rolex Datejust 126333 Steel and Gold 41mm Wimbledon Dial

Datejust 126333 Key Features:

– Introduced: 2016

– Case Size: 41mm

– Materials: Oystersteel & Yellow Gold

– Functions: Time w/ Running Seconds, Date Display

– Dial: Multiple Options Available

– Bezel: Fixed, 18k Yellow Gold, Fluted Style

– Crystal: Sapphire w/ Cyclops Lens

– Movement: Caliber 3235

– Water Resistance: 100 Meters / 330 Feet

– Bracelet: Oyster or Jubilee Jubilee

Click here for our Ultimate Buying Guide on the Rolex Datejust.

Two-Tone Steel and Gold Rolex Datejust

Let’s start with an updated classic – a two-tone Rolex Datejust 41 ref. 126333. Classic because the ref. 126333 has all the Datejust features we’ve come to know and love, and updated since it is part of the larger and upgraded Datejust 41 collection.

As its name suggests, the Datejust 41 ref. 126333 features a 41mm stainless steel case topped with the familiar fluted bezel in 18k yellow gold and equipped with a matching yellow gold screw-down winding crown. Larger than the definitive Datejust 36 but more classically proportioned than the sporty Datejust II, the Datejust 41 is the perfect contemporary version of Rolex’s archetypal timepiece.

The Rolex Datejust 41 ref. 126333 offers an assortment of dial colors, including the popular silver, black, or white varieties, along with the striking so-called “Wimbledon” dial in grey with Roman numerals outlined in green. Another choice available with the Datejust 41 lineup is the option of the five-link Jubilee bracelet or three-link Oyster bracelet, which both feature 18k yellow gold center links flanked by stainless steel exterior links.

Rolex Submariner Two-Tone

Two-Tone Rolex Submariner 126613 Steel and Gold 41mm Blue Dial

Submariner 126613 Key Features:

– Introduced: 2020

– Case Size: 41mm

– Materials: Oystersteel & Yellow Gold

– Functions: Time w/ Running Seconds, Date Display

– Dial: Black or Blue w/ Luminous Hour Markers

– Bezel: Unidirectional, Black or Blue Ceramic Insert w/ 60-Minute Scale

– Crystal: Sapphire w/ Cyclops Lens

– Movement: Caliber 3235

– Water Resistance: 300 Meters / 1,000 Feet

– Bracelet: Oyster Bracelet

Click here for our Ultimate Buying Guide on the Rolex Submariner.

Two-Tone Steel and Gold Rolex Submariner

Aside from dressier timepieces, two-tone Rolex watches also come in sportier styles. Take for example the two-tone Rolex Submariner ref. 126613. The combination of robust stainless steel, precious 18k yellow gold, and ultra-modern Cerachrom ceramic come together to make one highly attractive Submariner.

Part of the latest Submariner generation, the two-tone Rolex Submariner ref. 126613 is fitted with a 41mm Oyster case. Though the Submariner 41 is technically the largest Rolex Submariner ever made (replacing the 40mm dimensions that had been around since the 1960s), its proportions are more reminiscent of older (pre- “Super case”) Submariner watches as a result of its slimmer lugs and shorter crown guards. Inside that case is the new-generation Caliber 3235 automatic movement, which boasts an increased power reserve of 70 hours instead of the 48 hours offered by its predecessor.

As is tradition with all two-tone Submariner watches, you can opt for a black bezel and black dial version with the Submariner ref. 126613LN or the blue bezel and blue dial one with the Submariner ref. 126613LB, which is affectionately nicknamed the “Bluesy” by today’s collectors. The unidirectional bezels are fashioned from scratch and fade-resistant Cerachrom ceramic while the 60-minute graduations and markings are filled in with 18k yellow gold. The dials also feature 18k yellow gold Mercedes hands and hour marker surrounds, all of which glow blue in the dark thanks to Rolex’s proprietary Chromalight luminous material.

Regardless of the bezel and dial colorway, all Rolex Submariner 126613 watches come with a stainless steel and yellow gold Oyster bracelet, which at 21mm thick is slightly wider than previous 20mm bracelets. As expected, the bracelets are furnished with clasps fitted with Rolex’s patented Glidelock extension system.

Rolex Sky-Dweller Two-Tone

Two-Tone Rolex Sky-Dweller 326933 Steel and Gold Black Dial

Sky-Dweller 326933 Key Features:

– Introduced: 2017

– Case Size: 42mm

– Materials: Oystersteel & Yellow Gold

– Functions: Time w/ Running Seconds, Annual Calendar, GMT Functionality

– Dial: White, Back, or Champagne w/ Luminous Hour Markers

– Bezel: Ring Command, 18k Yellow Gold, Fluted Style

– Crystal: Sapphire w/ Cyclops Lens

– Movement: Caliber 9001

– Water Resistance: 100 Meters / 330 Feet

– Bracelet: Oyster Bracelet

Click here for our Ultimate Buying Guide on the Rolex Sky-Dweller.

Two-Tone Steel and Gold Rolex Sky-Dweller

When Rolex first unveiled the Sky-Dweller in 2012, the watchmaker opted to make it exclusively available in solid gold. However, the two-tone Yellow Rolesor Sky-Dweller ref. 326933 joined the lineup in 2017, thereby significantly dropping the entry price for Rolex’s annual calendar watch.

As the largest dress watch available in Rolex’s catalog, the Sky-Dweller includes a 42mm Oyster case. The two-tone Sky-Dweller ref. 326933 offers the recognizable Yellow Rolesor mix of a stainless steel case, 18k yellow gold bezel, and matching yellow gold winding crown. Furthermore, the two-tone design carries through to the Oyster bracelet with gold center links flanked by stainless steel ones.

The Sky-Dweller is noted as one of Rolex’s most complicated modern models by offering two time zones, a date window, and a month display. Additionally, as an annual calendar watch, the indicators only need to be manually corrected once a year, on March 1st. Finally, the watch’s prominent fluted “Ring Command” bezel is not just for aesthetic purposes but is also an integral component to the Caliber 9001 inside the watch as it serves to allow the wearer to flip through the functions during time/date setting. The Rolex Sky-Dweller 326933 is available with a white, black, or champagne dial, all of which are punctuated with Chromalight coated baton-style hour markers and pencil hands.

Two-Tone Steel and Gold Rolex Sky-Dweller 326933 Black Dial

The Everlasting Appeal of the Two-Tone Rolex

Although two-tone watches have been a part of the Rolex catalog for eight decades, these modern versions illustrate that wearing a mix of steel and yellow gold is far from passé. Two-tone watches are consistently popular among many women due to their ability to effortlessly be paired with virtually all jewelry, and steel and gold Rolex models have been experiencing a significant rise in popularity in more recent years.

The classic two-tone Rolex Datejust was THE luxury watch to own during the 1980s, but an increasing number of today’s buyers are now becoming aware of the excellent value proposition that they offer. Steel and gold watches can be spotted on the wrist of countless of today’s top celebrities and two-tone Rolex watches further confirm that some classics are well deserving of being perennial favorites.

Two-Tone Steel and Gold Rolex Datejust 41 126333 Jubilee Bracelet

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