Thursday, November 03, 2011


Buying fake designer merchandise leads to enormous savings versus actually splurging on the real-deal. But are you actually paying the cost in the long run?

I’m sure we all ponder this question when either shopping for real or fake designer goods; if it was possible, should selling counterfeit merchandise be legal? It would help our taxes, everything would be documented, there would be legalized factories to undergo the production, and for those less fortunate, they could have the imaginary luxury of owning a “designer” item for less then half the cost. If that was the case, the government could have a strong grip on the knockoff production, making them tweak labels, structures and designs so there not entirely copying the original in the first place. For example the 20th century has been big on “fast fashion” a term used for any retail or production company who mimics the way a certain style is on designer runways, then sells it for less than half the price of the original in their stores. If fashion is all about copying one another and stemming from each others ideas, then why isn’t it legal to make knockoff products?

Designer brands are labeled on everything (literally, everything!). From purses, to sharpie markers to iPods - the temptation of wanting a designer product is etched in your mind; along with the question, is it real or fake? Buying knockoffs these days are so good, not even some of the pros can tell if it’s real or fake. With so many counterfeit products ranging from sneakers to iPods, it isn’t helping the actual designers coming up with their designs as well as our economy. Buying counterfeit merchandise is a bad idea in many ways. According to an article titled “Faking it - Counterfeit fashion” by Cynthia Nellis, it gives reasons as to why you should think twice about buying counterfeit merchandise, here are some examples:
The tax we pay each year? The people selling counterfeit merchandise not only get away with not having to pay taxes but also robbing our economy more than $1 billion dollars each year.
It is said that counterfeiting is linked with gangs and terrorists. Sometimes knockoff handbags will be lined with drugs that they can smuggle into countries and sell.
The knockoff products such as electronics or toys can be unsafe, using the cheapest way to produce the items can cause harm to anyone, falling apart easily and leaving little pieces around for small children to choke on them.
Counterfeit sunglasses shatter easily and may fail to provide UV protection against the sun like it says.
It is also said that selling knockoffs, especially handbags, increases the price of the actual designer handbag due to the company’s lost sales. Counterfeiting isn’t made with high quality goods as you may all know. Many people just want the designer look for less and will stop at nothing to get it.

Both the United States and Canada have created laws to minimize counterfeit selling and production. Under the Trade-marks Act and the Anti-Counterfeiting Consumer Protection Act of 1996 they included laws such as criminal infringement of copying a product, trafficking goods, services and labels, allowing law enforcement to take counterfeit products as well as shutting down where they make there goods, and many more. Depending on how real the knockoff looks to the designers product, a person can get charged with selling knockoffs of up to $1,000,000! (Now how many designer handbags would that get you?)
Although the idea of legalizing knockoffs has its benefits, the term to counterfeit means to illegally copy something. Knockoffs are illegal in the sense that they are trying to sell as the real product. There have been incidents where the people who produce counterfeit merchandise will buy a real designer bag, make a replica of it, and return the fake bag in for another one and the sales associates don’t even notice. So even if you are the type of person to buy real designer goods from the stores, make sure you really inspect the bag your buying, and that goes for every other product you want to purchase as well.

As read above, spotting fake products can be very difficult to tell the difference as to what’s real and what’s fake. Keep in mind when shopping for designer merchandise how to spot a fake by using a few of these clues:
Most importantly, note the price - is it increasingly lower than what other retailers sell there merchandise for? For example if its a Chanel handbag selling for $150 - it’s fake. Chanel purses usually retail anywhere from $700 and above.
Where are you buying it from? More than likely if its being sold in a back alley way or out of a trunk of a car, then ladies - its not real, sorry!
Point of origin tag. Noticing where its from is highly important. If it’s “Made in China” then it probably isn’t real.
With it being the 20th century and all, the internet is a huge part of retailing. If your one of those people who loves to shop online rather than waste your time at the mall carelessly walking around, keep in mind that counterfeiters do sell online as well. A few hints to look for when browsing online:
Notice the description they give. If they overkill on words such as “authentic” “genuine” and “real”, then the site you’re on is a fraud.
If you read into the description carefully the knockoffs sometimes will have “this design is inspired by..” showing that it is in fact a knockoff.
And of course as said above, note the price. Price is always important!
Overall if you want a real designer bag, and not a knockoff, your best bet is to go to the company’s store or department store that sells designer goods. If you’re the online shopper, most designers sell directly to the public on their own sites which would be the most surefire way to get the product your looking for. So ladies, let us try and minimize even more our want for designer knockoffs and try to save up for the real deal! It’ll help out our economy and environment by not having to throw away your knockoffs after two short years of usage, and also keep your fashionista status at a high with a real designer bag! (Ou la la!) Everyone will be envious, and that’s what a girl who’s fashion forward wants, right?

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