As you’ve probably already realised, I’m a sucker for makeup! I love it! From watching makeup tutorials on YouTube, buying makeup, and applying my own makeup (I’m no MUA though)! The problem is – it isn’t cheap! With the easy ability of being able to shop online these days and compare prices, often getting a better deal it’s tempting to look to sites such as eBay for deals, where there a so many sellers with the products you’re after.
Now I’m not saying that every seller on eBay or similar sites is not genuine, however it is a well-known fact that eBay is one of the sites with the most fake makeup products out there. As I was clearing through my makeup collection yesterday I came across my fake blush I bought a year or so ago which for some reason I’ve kept, and thought it’d be great to talk about this!
The blush purchased was Lovejoy from Mac. I love this colour blush on my skin tone, it provides a gorgeous natural glow and I thought I’d stock up on it! As I already knew the colour suited me, I thought it’d be easy to re-buy from eBay at lower price, as the Mac price is £22.
Unfortunately, I can’t remember the seller ID or the price I paid for my eBay purchase, however, I think it was in the region of about £16, and one thing I DO remember is that it was definitely listed as genuine.
Upon receiving my item, I was shocked! The psychedelic blush that appeared before me was the poorest, most shocking fake I’d seen! To make matters worse, the seller insisted it was genuine!
I of course opened up a case on eBay, however with the seller claiming the item was a true Mac product I needed to lay out a case, with some evidence supporting my claim that this was fake. Apart from swatching the product which was the most obvious way to show discrepancy, I also researched online how to spot a fake Mac product from the real thing, and upon closer inspection of my purchase vs the real Mac Love Joy, I could present a case to eBay.
*Fake Lovejoy vs The Real Deal*
1. The colour swatch shows that the true product (top) is much more golden brown in tone. The fake product has a pink tone (bottom).
2. Always look out for the font on the product – both in how the ‘MAC’ is written on the front on the plastic, but also the sticker at the bottom, whether this is on a blush, or any other product. If you look closely, you can see the true product has a finer font, not as thick on the front of the product – whereas the fake has a thicker type.
3. At the bottom of the cases there are quite a few differences. The most obvious been that the ‘Love Joy” font on the genuine product is in upper case, whereas on the fake it’s lower case. The text is bright white on the fake whereas the Mac product is more a washed off white. The sticker on the fake also has the CB5 batch code starkly on it where the true product batch code is so faint you can barely see it. The registered design information which is embossed on the case is also different, but more difficult to spot. The true Mac product is slightly larger in font size with the ‘Reg Design’ text, slightly closer together to the next line of text than the fake. The fake also has again a strange HCT code on the case which the true case does not have etched on.
4. Finally, a couple more tell-tale signs with the case. Hard to show on photo, but the true Mac case is slightly thicker in width (height) than the fake, just a couple of millimeters. Similarly, there is a matte sort of glitter sheen (for lack of better description) on the true Mac case, where the black on the fake is solid black and generally feels lighter and more flimsy.
Luckily for me, the case was closed in my favour by eBay and I was fully refunded. Aside from the financial implication, there is also the serious issue of applying fake make up products which are likely untested, or tested to a much lesser standard than the true products. You have no idea what is in them, and the harm they can do to you. It was a silly decision on my part, cutting corners to save a few pounds, however there are genuine sellers on eBay and such other sites which is one of the reasons why I felt safe doing so. After all I’ve sold my products (genuine purchases) on Depop and eBay with no issues. I think the thing to remember is the only way to be 100% sure you’re buying the real deal is to shop at the store on the brand website or concessions such as Selfridges etc. There is no harm in using 3rd party sites, but make sure you do your research, ask for more images, close up photos if you’re unsure. If the seller is genuine, they won’t mind doing this for you. And the most important thing is if it seems too good to be true, it probably is!
Mac has a dedicated team that deals with counterfeit sellers. I reported mine to the following email address:
firstname.lastname@example.org. There is also a telephone number you can ring. More information regarding counterfeit Mac products, can be found on their dedicated page: http://www.maccosmetics.co.uk/counterfeit-education.