Buying fake leather bags can be both financially disappointing and mentally stressful, especially if you diligently saved your hard-earned money for it—a complete disaster, isn’t it?
Fake leather evening bags are most often made of cheap and inferior materials, which is why manufacturers and sellers of these products make double the profits. According to the U.S. Customs and Border Protection, nearly 1 of 5 seized counterfeit products in the United States are fake handbags—usually made from faux leather and are knock-offs of designer brands such as Gucci, Louis Vuitton, and Hermes.
It is a lot more challenging if you are buying online, you are not able to see or touch it beforehand. In a survey conducted by Velocity MR, 1 in 3 online shoppers have received fake products in the past six months. You do not want to be in that statistic, do you?
Although detecting counterfeit bag is a skill even when buying it in person, one should know the red flags to look out for when buying leather evening bags online. This guide will help you spot genuine and fake leather bags from a stitch, or even photos, away!
What should you look out for when buying online?
Beware of spoofed websites
Buying online can be tricky, not only can the products be faked, but also the websites—especially if you found them through various links in social media or in a mailing list. They can fool you by adding words such as hermes-bags.com or deliberate misspellings such as louisevitton.com.
To check if the website you are transacting with is legitimate, use Google search and click the authentic website of the brand you are buying—it should lead you to the same website if it is the legitimate one.
Check the source and vendor of the product
Fake items are often sold on popular e-commerce websites such as Amazon or eBay. Make sure to only purchase your item if the seller has been verified by the e-commerce platform, and they should be able to tell you the product’s manufacturer and even how to validate if the product is indeed genuine.
Check the reviews of the vendor and their products
If you are unsure about the product you are buying, read about what others have said about the seller and the quality of the products sold. These reviews should also be available on the social media accounts in the comments sections and review tabs. Product reviews are helpful since they are based on the experience of others who have made a successful transaction with the vendor.
Request for actual photos and videos
Bags are often sold with images of the products but do not be fooled, it is easy to put stock photos in product listings as these can be grabbed directly from the source. To be safe, make sure you request photos of the actual bag with the ability to view it up close and in detail.
If possible ask them to do the following tests through video:
- Zipper Test: A designer quality zipper should be smooth both when opening or closing the bag. It should not catch any fabric, lining, or thread of the bag.
- Edges Check: Rotating the bag, there should be no loose fabric or threads. Uneven and sloppy thread work are also red flags. Ornaments such as gems and jewels should also look uniform and organized.
- Lining Test: When touched, the inner lining of the bag should not sound crunchy or paper-like as these are signs of inferior quality.
Heavy discounts are fishy
Yes, buying at a bargain can be hard to resist but as they always say, there’s no such thing as a free lunch! Luxury and designer brands need to offset the manufacturing and operational costs, hence the high price of the bags—not to mention the craftsmanship and marketing efforts they put in the bags.
Discounts as low as 50% are too good to be true as authentic brands do not usually sell at this price range, especially if it’s part of a brand-new collection. Unbelievable discounts often mean either the product you are buying is fake or it has been stolen through fraudulent means. Do not fall for big discounts as often they can be a trap to lure you in to sell you counterfeit products.
Always make sure there is clear return policy:
If the seller has no money-back guarantee, buyer protection, or return policy—surely that is a red flag. Without any of these protections, you are bound to fall for fake items. Hence, you should look out for these as this ensures whether you are buying from legitimate sources.
What should you do if you end up with a fake one?
Do not just accept your fate of unfortunately being handed over a counterfeit, it is your hard-earned money and you should not settle for anything that does not deserve to be in your closet! If you are sold a fake bag, do not merely settle for returns or refunds—file a strict action against them. Help your fellow shoppers be aware of these fraudulent vendors and websites by posting them on social media and leaving reviews on their websites.