By now, we know that buying counterfeit goods is far from harmless. While an inauthentic designer bag might do your wallet a lot less damage, buying one is not a socially responsible choice to make. Essentially, this is because manufacturers of the ‘real thing’ are required to stand up to strict production regulations but those making the illegal knock-offs aren’t. This means that faked product might’ve been made in a sweat shop, or using child labourers, and it certainly also means that methods of production aren’t environmentally sound. Unfortunately, counterfeit items are becoming more and more difficult to pick out; some of are almost identical to the real thing. To help you make sure you’re not inadvertently supporting questionable labour policies and ecological damage, I’ve done some research and put together a list of 7 ways to spot a fake.
1. Check Out the Packaging
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A true designer product comes wrapped up in style. You can expect to find layers of tissue paper, a branded protective fabric wrap, care instructions, product information, and, most importantly, a big, well-made box or bag. If you’re taking your pair of ‘Prada’ boots home in a plastic carrier bag, the chances are pretty good you’ve bought yourself a fake.
2. Consider the Price
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Sometimes you’ll strike gold and find a beautiful designer jacket on sale at a radically reduced price, but even then you can expect to hand over a fair amount of cash. If you stumble across an upmarket item going for the price of a bag of crisps, you can be certain it’s not authentic. Exclusive brands are, by definition, expensive. If the piece you’re eying up seems too cheap to be true, stay away from it; it probably is.