Certain slang terms have become synonymous with not only the hysteria surrounding streetwear, but also the products themselves. And in many instances, these one-word summations like "grails" or "bogo" have come to represent the normal way of describing an item. Whereas slang is often thought to only describe aspects of burgeoning youth culture, it's relevance is particularly important when also attempting to decipher the world of Rolex watches.

Horology is already an intimidating field for many because official watch terminology is already quite expansive as it relates to things like internal movements, outward aesthetics, and collectable models. Coupled with the aforementioned inclusion of Rolex slang terms, and it's no wonder that many people steer clear of collecting out of fear that they'll embarrass themselves in front of other enthusiasts.

Fear not, as we've compiled a list of some of the most well-known Rolex nicknames in the industry. While many rely on connections relating to the color of a bezel, others have become synonymous with the famous wearers themselves.

For those wanting a better understanding of hidden Rolex lingo, here's a good jumping off point.

Bart Simpson

Model: Rolex Submariner 5513 Gilt dial

The Bart Simpson designation for the 1960s-made Submariner with Gilt Dial stems from the stubby, five-pointed Rolex logo/Cononet which people think resembles the haircut of the legendary cartoon character.


Model: Rolex GMT-Master II

Since the colors blue and black are commonly associated with Batman, the usage of these same colors on the Cerachrom bezel for the GMT-Master II made people link the two. When a model went up for auction at Christie's in 2016, it sold for $10,000.


Model: Rolex GMT-Master

The Rolex GMT-Master "Blueberry" remains steeped in mystery. First and foremost, did Rolex actually make them? According to Hodinkee's Ben Clymer, "I believe that they're real. I believe that Rolex made them, but there are a lot of fake ones out there."

As one may suspect, the "Blueberry" designation stems from its blue bezel which is often replicated from unsavory counterfeiters around the world. Thus, more often times than not, a Blueberry's charm is often the result of aftermarket alterations.


Model: Rolex Bubbleback 3131

Featuring a domed caseback to accommodate the automatic winding rotor which was a unique feature in the 1930s, the protruding shape lends itself to describing it as a "bubbleback." Despite the ubiquitous usage by watch enthusiasts, it's a nickname; similarly described as "ovettone" or “Little Egg" in Italian.


Model: Rolex GMT-Master and GMT-Master II

While Coca-Cola's official colors are red and white, the black and red inserts on both the GMT-Master and GMT-Master II are said to have the appearance of the black liquid inside a bottle set against the brand's cheery logo.

Dark Star/Stelline

Model: Rolex ref. 6062

Introduced at the Basel Fair in 1950, reference 6062 is one of only two Rolex models from the period to feature a triple calendar complication. The name, "Dark Star," references the star-shaped hour markers which has also earned the watch the nickname "Stelline" which is Italian for "little stars."

Domino's pizza

Model: Rolex Air-King

Beginning in the early 1980s, Domino's Pizza began rewarding employees Rolex watches through a program aptly-titled the, "Rolex Challenge." Unlike other nicknames, the Domino's branding is present on the watch face — shrinking many as odd or unique — as Rolex tended to only allow co-branding with heritage brands like Tiffany & Co. in the past. In more recent years, the distinct logo was removed from the face and changed to a more subdued representation on the bracelet.

Fat Lady

Model: Rolex GMT-Master II ref. 16760

The Fat Lady is the rare occurrence where two nicknames show up on a single model. In 1983, Rolex released the GMT-Master II ref. 16760 with red and black inserts (Coca-Cola), independently adjustable 24-hour hand, and also featured a thicker case, bezel, and crown guards. As a result of it's curviness, it's sometimes also referred to as the "Sophia Lauren" as a loving homage to the actress who was known for her excellent figure.

II Freccione

Model: Rolex Explorer II ref. 1655

Italian for "The Arrow," the Il Freccione designation belongs to the Rolex Explorer II which was made for speleologists, volcanologists, and polar and jungle explorers. The name stems from the bright orange arrow-shaped 24-hour hand on the watch which would help explorers day or night, and has also been called the "Steve McQueen" even though the actor was known to wear a Submariner ref. 5512.

Frog Foot

Model: Rolex Explorer II ref. 1655

Seen on second generation models of the aforementioned Rolex Explorer II ref. 1655, the "Frog Foot" also references the shape of the Coronet. In this instance, watch enthusiasts thought the emblem was thinner and slightly more irregular than past shapes — resembling an amphibious foot.

Gilt Dial

Model: Rolex Submariner ref. 5512, ref. 5513, Rolex GMT-Master ref. 1675, Rolex "Pepsi" ref. 1675,

In jewelry design, the word "gilt" denotes an application of a layer of gold leaf or powdered gold. In a Rolex context, this means that a "Gilt Dial" has gold writing and indice markers — unlike more current sport watches that have white text. Reference 5513 was famously worn by Roger Moore in Bond film, Live and Let Die.


Model: Rolex Submariner ref. 116610LV

Earning it's nickname thanks to its prominent green hue and thick case design, the "Hulk" — which was released in 2010 — marks the first instance when Rolex had the dial and bezel insert in any color other than black or blue.

James Cameron

Model: Rolex Sea-Dweller Deepsea Blue ref. 116660BLSO

In 2012, James Cameron worked with Rolex on a new submersible vessel known as the Deepsea Challenger which was capable of the exploring the deepest parts of the ocean, the Mariana Trench, down to 11,000 meters. To commemorate this launch — which Cameron piloted himself — Cameron wore a not-for-sale prototype watch known as the Rolex Deepsea Challenge which was capable of withstanding the rigors of such exploration.

Two years later, collectors had the ability to purchase the unique Sea-Dweller. Key features include a gradient dial that goes from blue at the top to black.


Model: Rolex Submariner ref. 16610LV

For casual observers, the "Hulk" and "Kermit" could be misconstrued as the same item given the usage of the color green. However, upon close examination, the Kermit features thee first instance of a maxi dial in the Submariner line which coincided with the model's 50th anniversary in 2003. The Kermit was eventually replaced by the Hulk in 2010 with changes that included a ceramic bezel and broader lugs,


Model: Rolex Moonphase ref. 8171

The name "Padellone" comes from the Italian word "large frying pan" and references the models's significant 38mm diameter. From a technological standpoint, this watch is one of only two Rolexes that has a moon phase indicator. In 2013, a pristine example of the Padellone sold at auction for $1.14 million.

Paul Newman

Model: Rolex Daytona ref. 6239

When legendary actor, Paul Newman, took up auto racing, his wife, Joanne Woodward, gave him a Rolex Daytona with the inscription "Drive Carefully - Me." Key attributes of this model versus other Daytona's included square-ended indicators in the subdials and an Art Deco font.

Due to its lack of popularity, Rolex didn't produce many versions of this style. However, it became a favorite of Newman and he was often seen photographed wearing his Daytona. As a result of this combination of supply versus demand, this particular style of Daytona is amongst the most collectable.

When Newman's actual watch came up for auction in 2017, it broke the record for the highest price ever achieved for a wristwatch at auction with a value of $17.8 million.


Model: Rolex GMT-Master, GMT-Master II

Like the Pepsi emblem itself, the nickname refers to the red and blue bezel inserts utilized on past favorites like the Rolex GMT-Master — which was inspired by the color scheme of Pan Am Airlines — and the gold GMT-Master II which is still in production today.


Model: Rolex Explorer II

The original Rolex Explorer II came with a black dial and exposed white gold. When Rolex decided to release a white model, collectors dubbed it "Polar" given it's color scheme, and the Explorer II's connection to snowy adventure.


Model: Rolex Day-Date

While most nicknames usually stem from the fan base, Rolex was instrumental in giving the world the moniker "President" for its Day-Date by running an ad campaign called "The President's Watch" which coincided with President Lyndon Johnson's affinity for the particular model.

Rail Dial

Model: Rolex Explorer II ref. 1655

The Rail Dial moniker on the Rolex Explorer II ref. 1655 stems from the appearance of the phrase, "Chronometer Officially Certified." While there's certainly nothing particularly exciting about the designation, watch enthusiasts refer to this usage because the C's in the first and last words align.


Model: Paul Newman Daytona ref. 626

Even the most minute changes in text on a Rolex watch face can drastically impact the value of a particular piece. Such is the case with the "RCO" version of the Daytona. Whereas most models feature white writing with a black face which reads, "Rolex Cosmograph Oyster," the "RCO" instead reads "Rolex / Oyster / Cosmograph."

In 2013, an RCO broke the world record for the most expensive Daytona ever sold at auction with a price of $1,089,186.

Root Beer

Model: Rolex GMT Master II

Like the aforementioned Coca-Cola and Pepsi monikers, the brown color of the bezel insert once again points to the world of soft drinks.


Model: Rolex’s Submariner ref. 116619

Debuting in 2008, the Smurf features 18 karat white gold construction and an all-blue Cerachrom unidirectional bezel which is said to resemble the skin pigment of the classic 1980s cartoon.


Model: Rolex GMT-Master II

Eight-year-old Zahid Ali, son of Mo Ali, Director of Product and Strategy at Hodinkee, came up the idea to create a Sprite bezel color way to live alongside the aforementioned "Coke" and "Pepsi" models. While the product itself never left the design stage at the Hodkinee offices, it's a nice reminder that nicknames can get started by anyone.

Steve McQueen

Model: Rolex Explorer II ref. 1655

Despite being nicknamed after the legendary American actor, Steve McQueen, the thespian never actually wore the Rolex Explorer II ref. 1655. Instead, he favored the Submariner ref. 5512 which was mistaken for the aforementioned Explorer by an Italian publication. The rest... as they say...is history.


Model: Rolex Datejust Turn-O-Graph

Rolex became the first watch manufacturer to mass-produce a a rotating bezel when they released the Turn-O-Graph ref. 6202 in 1953 which was capable of measuring a period of time by aligning the zero mark on the rim with the second, minute, or hour hand of the watch.

As a result of this function, the U.S. Air Force’s Thunderbird aerobatic squadron utilized the Turn-O-Graph as their official pilot’s watch.

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