Each year the counterfeit industry generates between 500 billion and 600 billion dollars. Luxury apparel and accessories are some of the most popular items that are “knocked off”. The internet has made it much easier for those who wish to sell counterfeit goods. At the same time the internet has made it more difficult for the consumer to ensure the authenticity of their goods.
It would be devastating to purchase a beautiful pair of Valentino rockstud pumps, only to find out they are FAKE. So, we’ve put together a list of things you should do to help guarantee that designer shoes you purchase are authentic.
1. If Buying New ONLY purchase from authorized retailers. Sure if you type “buy Christian Louboutin shoes” in a google search a million places will pop up in the results. Some of them might even have great deals. However, most of those places are not legit. Purchase directly from the shoe designer OR major department stores. (Saks, Neiman Marcus, Nordstroms ect.)
2. If Buying Used ONLY purchase from retailers that both guarantee authenticity AND have a strong positive reputation. Seriously there are so many luxury consignment shops on the internet right now. At this point you don’t even need to have an actual online store you can set up an Instagram page and start consigning designer shoes and bags. While some of these may be legit, you really have to do your research. Make sure they have a strict policy about not accepting counterfeit goods. Also check out their reviews (Facebook, google, yelp) to see what customers are saying about them. If you see a lot of complaints about authenticity you know to stay away.
3. Examine Pictures Thoroughly If a place is selling a pair of used pictures and they only have a few pictures shown, don’t be afraid to ask for more pictures. You want multiple close up pictures of the shoe. One of the major things you should examine is stitching. Luxury designer shoes have flawless stitching. The stitching on many of the knock offs is “janky” and often inconsistent. Make sure the photos allow you to take a hard look at the stitching.
4. Compare Unique Features Quality and consistent stitching is a very important part in determining authenticity. However, there are other factors to look at. These can be brand and style specific. For example, the studs on a pair of Valentino rockstuds will always be pyramid shape and evenly spaced or Christian Louboutins will always have a glossy red sole with a cleanly embossed logo on the sole. The majority of designer shoes will5. Research Shape and Style Sometimes the shape of the shoe is so different from the authentic its a no brainer that it is a fake. Always perform a google image search to look and compare the shape to that of the original shoe. The design should be a mirror image of the authentic.
6. Avoid Stock Photos If someone or a website is selling used shoes and only has stock photo images..RUN! That is a major red flag. You want the actual photos of the shoe you are going to purchase. Photos should be taken at every angle.
7. Pay Attention to Price. Trust the old saying “if it’s too good to be it probably is.” A really low price for a pair of designer shoes is generally not a good deal. It probably means they are not authentic. Be aware of the site selling Christian Louboutin shoes for $200, they are full of $%^&!
Hope these tips will help you. There is a lot of funny business going on these days. Trust your gut. If something feels off you are probably right. Whenever possible buying from an authorized retailer is preferred.