'Tis the Season: How to Spot a Fake Designer Bag

The holiday season is here which means scammers are out trying to make a quick buck. Learn how to spot a fake designer bag here.


With holiday shopping high on the minds of many Australians, counterfeit purse manufacturers are hoping to sell fake merchandise to unwitting shoppers. 

Do you know how to spot a fake designer purse? Spotting these imitations may be harder than you think. The internet is awash in counterfeit merchandise and fake bags.

In fact, fake designer bags are one of the most commonly seized items confiscated by Australia's border patrol agents. If you are looking for useful tips on how to avoid being scammed this holiday season, read on to learn useful tips on how to spot counterfeit purses.

1. Is the Price Too Good to Be True?

Designer handbags are expensive for a reason. Companies that make authentic designer purses typically do so without cutting corners. Name-brand merchandise is also more likely to be made by hand in Europe rather than Asia.

For these reasons, an authentic name-brand purse will easily run several hundred dollars if not higher. If someone is offering a designer bag for $200 that would normally cost $2,000, you should consider that a red flag, especially if the bag is supposedly brand new.   

2. Look for Consistent Hardware

Everything from the zipper to the handles and chains should be made of similar materials that match in colour. Designer brand makers go to great lengths to provide consistent hardware that adds continuity to real designer purses. 

Off-brands will often work with whatever materials are readily at hand. Fake purses may mix a gold zipper with silver latches, for example. You wouldn't normally notice that fashion faux pas from a brand like Gucci

3. Examine the Quality of the Leather

When you spend several hundred dollars or thousands of dollars on a quality purse, much of that cost is due to the quality of the leather. High-quality leather should remain soft and dry to the touch. Authentic leather ages into a rich, darker-hued colour that still remains attractive. 

Knockoff purses will use cheap leather or fake leather. Cheap leather will have more defects and possibly an inconsistent texture and colour.

Fake leather is easier to spot. The fake material is rough, shiny, and similar to plastic. Fake leather will also be missing that authentic leather smell. 

4. Check Out the Stitching

Quality stitching is hard to imitate. Lacklustre stitching is often the first giveaway that a supposed name-brand purse is a fake. Look for stitching that is sloppy, slanted, uneven, or frayed. 

Fake purses will often glue areas together that would otherwise be stitched. Genuine name-brand purses should feature high-quality stitching throughout the purse. That is a hallmark of a quality purse. 

5. Examine the Packaging

Brands like Gucci go to great lengths to make a great impression. The packaging used to ship luxury goods is a reminder of the quality of the goods inside. 

Counterfeits will try to imitate the details of how name brands stamp or emboss labels. You can visit the websites of name-brand companies to learn about how they provide authenticity cards and other options to define authenticity.

Sometimes, authenticity cards are a red flag. Louis Vuitton, for example, does not offer authenticity statements. If you find such a statement, you are probably looking at a fake purse. 

6. Consider the Seller's Location

You won't ever find Gucci and Prada's products sold at flea markets or through street vendors. Luxury brands carefully limit the number of bags in circulation, and they often restrict the number of bags one consumer can buy at once.

These steps are done to keep demand high while limiting the number of designer purses in circulation. If you find a seller who has 25 copies of the exact same purse, those are probably knockoffs. 

Name-brand purses are typically sold through reputable online stores like Blue Spinach. If you are shopping in person, stick with reputable retail stores. 

7. Dig Deep for Details

Not all counterfeit purses are easy to spot. Some may use quality leather and stitching. If the outside of the purse appears to pass an examination, start looking more closely. 

One great spot to look at is the inside of the pockets. Luxury brands will take the time to ensure that every part of the purse is of equal quality. Knockoff purses are more likely to cut corners.

Inside the purse, you may also find the purse's logo. Look for any sign of discrepancy that may indicate that you are holding a fake purse and not the real thing.

If you have an authentic name-brand purse, you can compare the quality of craftsmanship between the two purses.  

8. Consider the Website

One of the easiest ways to be duped into buying a fake purse is online. As the holiday season ramps up, there will be many fake purses available for purchase online. The website that you purchase from should look credible.

Try to avoid websites that connect sellers to buyers. Working with a reputable online store can guarantee that you are buying authentic products. Read the "About Us" page and look for online reviews of the store.

Is there a phone number? What is the customer service like? Scam operations are unlikely to speak directly to customers.

Real designer purses are less likely to be sold on shady websites where you cannot reach anyone on the phone. Even a fake purse could run you hundreds of dollars, and scam operations are not going to offer a refund.

Avoid a Fake Designer Purse by Shopping With Blue Spinach

Now you know how to spot a fake designer purse. The easiest way to avoid being scammed is by working with Blue Spinach, Australia’s premium re-seller of International Luxury Brand fashion, shoes, and accessories.

We curate the very best selections of pre-loved pieces. To place an order or to schedule an appointment at our store, please contact us today