[Art credit: Todd Goldman.]
I recently received a customer email from MAC Cosmetics, warning consumers to be wary of replica product that pretend to be from the brand. It stated the following:
“MAC Cosmetics does not offer its products through individuals, street vendors, internet auctions, independent boutiques or unauthorized online retailers.”
Those same guidelines can and should be applied to all labels and brands including Christian Louboutin, Prada, Nike and more. I remember one birthday, my own father tried to surprise me with a Tiffany & Co. necklace that was a fake. Being a huge fan of Tiffany and owning a few pieces, I am quite familiar with its line and especially the feel and weight of its product. I knew in an instant that the necklace was fake and called my dad to inquire where he got it and did he know he had been duped (he did not). It turns out, he purchased it from a friend of my sister’s who claimed to have inside access to Tiffany merchandise and was able to offer my dad a discount on the product.
Poor Dad. Having never shopped at Tiffany himself and with no understanding of the retail world, he had no clue that there is no such thing as an inside access to Tiffany merchandise. As is the case with MAC, Tiffany does not sell its jewelry and accessories through individuals. It just doesn’t work that way.
I can’t give you a formal education of the retail world, but I can tell you this: the big brands and big labels only sell their product at their own boutique stores (or official website) or at major retailers such as Neiman Marcus, Saks Fifth Avenue or Nordstrom. Authentic Louis Vuitton handbags are not sold at purse parties. Real Coach sunglasses are not sold at your beauty salon. Actual Nike sneakers are not sold at the flea market. And no one, but NO ONE, has inside access to the merchandise at Tiffany & Co., Cartier, Rolex or any other major brand in existence. So don’t fall for it.
For those of you who knowingly purchase fake merchandise or plan to, here’s why you shouldn’t:
- It’s illegal. You probably won’t ever be arrested for it, but if the person you bought fake fashion from is, then the police may come knocking on your door to confiscate it for evidence. And then you’re out the money you paid.
- Fake fashion dealers also deal in child labor, human trafficking and terrorism. This is according to an article by Harper’s Bazaar. Read the magazine’s full expose here.
- Fake fashion is tacky. Sorry. But those of us who know your handbag is fake are silently judging you. It’s true.
- You deserve better. And quite frankly, you deserve the kind of confidence that allows you to love yourself despite your inability to afford Chanel. Buying fake fashion is basically saying to the world, “I feel bad about myself because I can’t afford Louis Vuitton.” It’s okay. I can’t afford it either. Join me in choosing to be happy despite of it.