(These instructions are based on my Instagram video, which demonstrates how to determine a fake Cartier Love bracelet from an authentic Cartier Love bracelet.)
In 1969, Aldo Cipullo created the iconic “Love Bracelet” for Cartier. Modeled after medieval chastity belts, the one who wears it is said to be “locked in love”. This unisex bracelet had quickly become a must-have item and it’s still as popular as ever. In 2015, the bracelets became a complication for airport security being called “the biggest problem item” due to the difficulty in removing the bracelets before going through the body scanners. These classic “Love Bracelet” variations start at $1,800 and go all the way up to $62,000 depending on the precious metal and diamonds used. Consistently a best-seller item, you can resell an original Cartier “Love Bracelet” for more than its gold weight at market value. Now, the “Love Bracelet” is also the most counterfeited jewelry piece out there. With that being said, I’m going to give you several tips to help you identify the main differences between a real “Love Bracelet” and a fake.
Before we begin, it’s important to note that not all “Love Bracelets” are made the same. Over the years, there have been many changes in the design and style.
- Cartier uses top-notch materials, tools, and technology in creating their jewelry. The classic “Love Bracelet” in 18 karat gold weighs between 30 – 38 grams, depending on wrist size. It is solid and never hollow. The bracelet is 2.0 mm thick and its width is 6.1 mm.
- Next, check to see how many decorative screws there are on the cuff. Your bracelet should have 5 on each half plus two you can unscrew. The screws must be perfectly straight and evenly spaced.
(The screws on one of the fakes are larger in size and aren’t evenly placed or centered on the bracelet. As you can see, they are closer to the edge on one side of the bracelet than the other. *The screws on the other fake are more closely made like an authentic one, except if we were to closely look at the center line of the screw, we can see the inside is rounded from the way the jeweler has cleaned it. Cartier uses CNC cutting machines. The indented line in the center of the screws on the authentic bracelet are more flat.)
- Then, examine the materials. The “Love Bracelets” are produced in 18 karat yellow, white, pink gold, and 950 platinum. If your bracelet has gemstones, they should be diamonds only. The gems are also made visible on the inside of the bracelet with hexagonal cutouts.
- Next up, the finishing. Your bracelet should feel secure. The two halves should align perfectly when screwing them closed and the closure screw should turn easily with its accompanying screwdriver.
(Here, the edge of where the bangle attaches is not perfectly aligned. The lines going across the bracelet of where they attach aren’t even aligned. The attachment is rounded from the high polishing instead of being a bit more flat and crisp.)
- Investigate the hallmarks. There are several hallmarks to take note of. All markings should be crisp and clear. Smudged logos, uneven inscriptions, or sloppy finishes are red flags.
(Here, the markings are engraved too closely together. There is no space between the size and karat markings.)
Lastly, getting a full set with a pre-owned Cartier “Love Bracelet” increases the likelihood that it is genuine. A full set includes box, papers, and its mini screwdriver. Double-check the serial number on the paperwork and make sure it corresponds with the number stamped on the inside of your bracelet. You may also have someone at the Cartier store look up the serial number of your bracelet to make sure it checks out.
Thank you for making it to the end of this video and hope you don’t get duped into purchasing a fake Cartier “Love Bracelet”.