How Expensive Are Cartier Love Bracelets?
It’s the single most searched style of jewelry on the Internet—and probably the most counterfeited. A piece so sought-out that Cartier keeps waiting lists. A design that debuted over 50 years ago and still makes every fashion editor’s must-have list. The bracelet beloved by women ranging from 22-year-old beauty billionairess Kylie Jenner (who stacks ’em on six at a time) to Duchess of Sussex Meghan Markle (who wears a single no-stones bangle). So how expensive are Cartier Love Bracelets right now?
How expensive are Cartier Love Bracelets?
If you want to go to Cartier and buy yourself a brand-new one—the store currently sells over 40 versions and most come in seven sizes—it’s going to set you back between $4,050 and $56,000. But don't get discouraged, you can buy pre-owned Cartier Love bracelets for as little as $3,200. If you know where to look.
At a Cartier boutique, the price of a Love Bracelet varies according to the metal (white gold costs more than yellow or pink), width (the "Classic" 6.1mm costs more than the "Small" 3.65mm), and whether or not the bracelet has gemstones. You can buy bangles bedazzled with a single diamond (starting at $5,300), four diamonds (starting at $10,100), 10 diamonds (starting at $14,600), and pavé diamonds (which starts at $24,900 and go all the way up to the blinged-out $56,000 version that Kanye West wears). Maybe that’s why Cartier promotes them with the slogan “How far would you go for love?”
All that can really add up. Especially when you consider that—Duchess Meghan notwithstanding—the trend is to pile on as many Love Bracelets as you can, buckle on a Cartier watch (Cartier’s Santos or Roadster, which both have bolted cases, match nicely), and then add as many complementary Cartier styles (perhaps a Juste un Clou or two) as your arm can hold. What’s a jewelry lover to do?
Buy pre-owned. At Gemma by WP Diamonds, we sell a range of authenticated, pre-owned Cartier Love Bracelets at prices starting as low as $5,300. To make owning a Cartier Love Bracelet even more accessible, we also provide easy monthly payment plans through our partner Affirm.
Why Cartier Love Bracelets are so expensive
There are plenty of reasons that Cartier Love Bracelets cost so much. The top five:
- History. Designed in New York in 1969 by Italian Aldo Cipullo, the Love Bracelet was a plain bangle punctuated by bolts that echoed similar bolt designs seen on some of Cartier’s wristwatches. What made it different from other fine jewelry was the way it was worn: each Love Bracelet came in a hinged two-piece design with a small vermeil screwdriver so that the bracelet could be unbolted, put on, and then locked back in place. Cipullo’s idea, supposedly inspired by medieval chastity belts, was that the bracelet should be a continuously worn symbol of commitment, not just a piece of fashion jewelry. Once it was on, you needed that special Cartier screwdriver—and someone else’s help—to take it off again. To promote the design, Cartier gave away its first Love Bracelets to 25 famous couples, including Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor, the Duke and Duchess of Windsor, and Steve McQueen and Ali McGraw. (In those days, only the female half of the couple wore the haute handcuffs. Bracelets sized for men came later.)
- Materials. Although those first bracelets were made of gold-plated silver (and only cost about $250), Cartier soon switched to solid 18K gold. Designed to withstand constant wear, classic Cartier Love Bracelets are sturdy pieces that weigh between 30 and 38 grams—enough to set off oversensitive metal detectors.
- Popularity. Kylie Jenner, who’s been known to wear multiples on both arms, is legendary for her obsession with Love Bracelets, famously sharing a video of herself at the Cartier boutique where she had gone to get help having a Love Bracelet taken off that she had been “stuck on for, like, four years.” But the rest of the Kardashian clan loves them too, including Kim’s husband Kanye West, who doubles down on the diamond-studded models. Other celebrities seen wearing one or more: Dakota Fanning, Julianne Moore, Naomi Watts, Katie Holmes, Angelina Jolie, Pippa Middleton, Jennifer Aniston, Scarlett Johansson, Mila Kunis, and Justin Bieber.
- Promotion. Changing with the times, Cartier added diamonds to its Love Bracelet in 1979 and gradually evolved an entire Love Collection that riffed on Cipullo’s bolt design with rings, earrings, necklaces, chain bracelets, and—for customers who just couldn’t deal with that screwdriver—cuffs. Following the success of its original celebrity giveaway, the company also staged stunts like a Valentine’s Day contest awarding a pair of bracelets for the best answer to “Do You Believe in Love at First Sight?” and, beginning in 2006, declaring June 19 to be “Love Day,” as an excuse for Cartier fêtes in fashion centers like New York and Milan and one-off launches like a Love Charity Bracelet, which was a mini Love Bracelet on a silken cord that sold for $475 with $100 of that price going to charity.
- Demand. Almost immediately, the Love Bracelet became one of the most copied—read counterfeited—jewelry designs in the world. Cartier patented the design in the U.S. in 1974 and began adding serial numbers but, as generations of girls grow up dreaming of Cartier Love Bracelets, it sometimes seems that forgers can’t fake them fast enough. The bracelet not only played a supporting role in YA novels including Lip Gloss Jungle and Popularity Takeover, it made its way into adult nonfiction with a starring role in Liz Astrof’s books of essays Don’t Wait Up: Confessions of a Stay-at-Work Mom.
What else you need to know about Cartier Love Bracelets
Sizing: Cartier Love Bracelets come in seven sizes from 15 centimeters through 21 centimeters, so you’ll need to measure your wrist first. If you prefer a bracelet that fits tightly, add 1 centimeter to the measurement. If want a loose fit, add 2 centimeters. When in doubt, round up. Need more help? Read our sizing primer here.
Counterfeiting: Shape is a dead giveaway. If the bracelet is round and you can slip it over your wrist like a regular bangle, then it’s not the real deal: genuine Cartier Love Bracelets are an oval that follows the form of your wrist. Weight is another tipoff: Love Bracelets have to be heavy enough to stand up to 24/7 wear, so they are never lightweight or bendable. More clues: bolts that don’t work, bolt heads that not aligned, stamping or hallmarks that are shallow or sloppy. Bought from a Cartier boutique, the bracelets come in a red Cartier “guirlande” box with a special niche for the vermeil screwdriver that comes with the bracelet.
Where to buy authentic Cartier Love bracelets for the best price
At Gemma by WP Diamonds, you can shop our selection of pre-owned Cartier Love bracelets at up to 25 percent off retail: you’ll find everything from the latest pink gold Love Bracelets to white gold set with diamonds—all authenticated by our team of luxury experts. And, if you’re in the market for something to complement your bracelet, we carry an assortment of other Cartier Love Collection items starting from as little as $900, including necklaces, earrings, engagement rings, and wedding bands, as well as Cartier men’s watches priced from $2,550 and women’s watches from $2,100—all authenticated and warrantied by our team of luxury watch experts.
Our commitment to selling authentic and affordable Cartier Love Bracelets is backed by our A+ rating with the BBB and fantastic customer reviews. With our outstanding savings, easy monthly payment plans, free U.S. shipping and 14-day return policy, your opportunity to own one—or more—iconic Cartier Love Bracelets may be only a click away.