Counterfeiting is not a new-world problem, but it’s definitely one that lacks attention. Luxury brands all around the world have often struggled with their business due to the creation and sale of fakes.
In May 2021, about 57,607 counterfeit goods were seized at Port Long Beach. According to the Los Angeles Times, the seized goods worth almost 12.7 million dollars included Louis Vuitton bags, Chanel sunglasses, Nike Air sneakers and Givenchy T-shirts.
India is said to have one of the largest counterfeit markets in the world. According to the Economic Times, counterfeit products in India led to a loss of almost Rs1 lakh crore to luxury companies in 2019, with over 150 reported counterfeiting cases.
The most replicated brands in India are Louis Vuitton, Burberry, Gucci, Chanel and Michael Kors. Their demand is high and these products are not easily available. If they are, they aren’t affordable.
Distinguishing a replica from an original might seem tricky. But it’s not as difficult as one imagines. Paying attention to minor details like the stitching or material quality is what can help one identify a fake.
1. When it comes to items like a bag or a belt, it is the stitching that one looks for to spot authenticity. Designer bags usually have a smaller stitch pattern with a narrow strap.
2. Belts too have a finer stitch with a slightly heavy buckle while the buckle on a knockoff will feel much more lightweight. Also, an original branded belt will always have a unique serial number stamped or imprinted on each piece.
3. When it comes to watches, one can always identify a fake based on weight. An original watch will feel heavier and sturdier, whereas a fake will seem frail and fragile.
4. In clothing items like scarves, tops, dresses, etc. the obvious giveaway is the quality and look of the material. Quite often, the colour of the clothing is much lighter in colour, and the material is usually very flimsy.
5. Other than these, there are, of course, the more obvious flaws like spelling errors, differences in the shape or size of the product, etc.