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  1. #1

    Default [GUIDE] Fake or Real?

    I had this idea of writing a guide how to find out if your recent perfume bargain is an authentic perfume or not. So, I've done some research to get lots of options, images and descriptions about fake and authentic perfumes. There are many ways to get suspicious about the perfume, concerning if it's a fake one. First of all, the best way to buy a perfume, is to buy at an approved perfumery, since they only sell authentic and licensed perfumes. Although, I understand that people may look elsewhere because perfumeries are expensive, that's for sure.

    Perfumes can be sold in 3 different ways. Factory Sealed in box, that's what perfumeries sell aswell, so new, sealed, with cap and with box. Next possible way is a "used" perfume. These cannot be sealed, because they where used already. There's a chance they don't have the box and cap aswell. And at last, the tester. These are used in stores for people to test a (new) fragrance, but will be filled up to the top, but might be sold without cap, and without the box. The safest of these three are the last two. Used bottles are safe to buy, but make sure you look at the possible photo they made. If they used a promotion poster, of any other advertise, it's hard to see if it's a real one. Amateur photos, wich they made themselves are a good way to see what they are selling, and what the deal includes (cap and box) . Tester are a safe way aswell. These mostly come from approved stores or webshops on the internet, so a good chance they are real. Look for the sticker or patch saying "Tester" or "T1". Look for a bubble in the spraytube aswell, this indicates that it's never been sprayed before.

    Although, if you'd like a sealed one, outside of a perfumery, please read the following lines carefully. On internet auctions or markets like Ebay, look at the photos aswell. If they used any promotion photos, ask for pictures made by him. If the seller is a bad one, they probally won't answer or put any effort in these emails, because "someone else" will buy it either way. Seek buyers who provide refund aswell, and look at their feedback. Best way is a powerselling with xxxx and more positive feedback. New perfumes but not sealed might be decanted. Meaning, they used a large bottle to fill up smaller bottles to provide an alternate way of earning a bit of money. Before buying, ask if the unsealed has been decanted or not.

    Sealed boxes are an easy way to sell fake perfumes. "it's sealed, so it's new and authentic" Well, not always. When sealed, it's easy to hide a fake perfume and bottle inside. These bottles are probally different than you buy in a perfumery. Different shapes, mispelled names, slight different logo etc. are all fake. They might end up saying it's a fabricial error, but these expensive perfumes will not be sold in a bottle with a different shape, or different name etc. "eau de toilettie" and "adidos" are fake. The caps of fake ones are easy to identify, because they won't fit well on the bottle. If you haven't smelled the perfume at all, I recommend you to get a sample first, and compare the perfumes afterwards. Other parts to recognise are the painting and color of the perfume. If the painting comes off when you're scratching with your fingernail, it's likely a fake one. If the color is different than in a retail store (do watch out, because edp, edt, edc and aftershave may vary between colors), it's likely a fake aswell. Logos, printing etc. should all be sharp, and visible.

    Fake selling mostly sell for a good price. Although, they make their living with the shipping costs. People will buy easier when the price is low, but they don't really look at the shippingcosts. The origin or location of the seller may prove their bit aswell. Since China, Indonesia etc. are a known place for their fake goods, it's not recommended to buy from these sellers. A good safe way to pay is Paypal. If they don't accept Paypal, they don't wish to give away their name and adress, wich is strange.

    So, what to look for before buying.
    Look at the photo they made, how does the bottle look, are text and logos printed correctly and ofcourse, the selling itself, good feedback etc.

    What to look or smell for after buying.
    Does it smell like a sample, or a tester from a perfumery. How is the longetivity. Does the ink go off when scratching with your fingernail. Does the bottle have weird shapes, how does the cap fit. How is the text printed.

    Some information about the longetivity.
    * Perfume oil or Pure Perfume lasts 6+ hours (15%-30% perfume oil )
    * Parfum or Perfume lasts up to 4 to 6 hours (15% - 25% perfume oil)
    * Soie de Parfum lasts 3 to 6 hours (15% - 18% perfume oil)
    * Eau de parfum lasts 3 to 5 hours (8% - 15% perfume oil)
    * Eau de Toilette lasts 3 to 4 hours (4% - 10% perfume oil)
    * Eau de Cologne lasts up to 3 hours (2% - 5% perfume oil)
    * After Shave lasts 2 to 3 hours (3% or less perfume oil)
    * Eau Fraiche lasts 1 hour or less (3% or less perfume oil)

    A few pictures with the differences.

    Checklistmade by

    I just bought myself a Narciso Rodriguez - for Him on a grey market, but it's a real and authentic one. I took a sample with me, tested both of them and they where similar, with longetivity. The bottle is like retail, no weird shapes, the ink is good, logo and text vissible and sharp, and a cap like it should be.

    If I missed some very important points, please leave a comment.
    Last edited by Giustino; 24th February 2009 at 09:12 AM.
    unico grande amore.

  2. #2

    Default Re: [GUIDE] Fake or Real?

    I forget if there is one on Basenotes but eBay has a few Fake Guides

    Maybe these can help writing your own guide.

  3. #3

    Default Re: [GUIDE] Fake or Real?

    Thanks for the list. It looks like there's no "official" guide at BN yet, so it looks like I've got something to do next days, haha.
    unico grande amore.

  4. #4

    Default Re: [GUIDE] Fake or Real?

    Well if anyone's interested, I came by this guide while looking for a cologne. There is a link to a pdf on that page which is kinda like a check list, it seems useful but I'd like further elaboration =] Also, if anyone's planning to make a guide, I THINK my mum has got a real, and fake version of a Paris Hilton spray but without their boxes. I'd gladly take pictures if there is going to be dedicated project undertaken.

  5. #5

    Default Re: [GUIDE] Fake or Real?

    Strafe, thanks for that list aswell. Now I definently have enough info about this subject, and I gladly receive your photo's aswell.
    unico grande amore.

  6. #6

    Default Re: [GUIDE] Fake or Real?

    Another thing to add if it's not mentioned anywhere are grey-market fragrances. Here's a blog post about it:

  7. #7

    Default Re: [GUIDE] Fake or Real?

    Grey Market is a strange one because items can be grey market yet not fake.

    For example any creed that isn't bought from licenced vendor i.e. are not licenced by Creed to sell the frags but im sure they are 100% genuine.

    Sometimes Grey Market stock is worse because at least a fake is easy to deal with whereas I'd be more upset at spending good money on genuine product which is old and tired.

  8. #8

    Default Re: [GUIDE] Fake or Real?

    I've written the article, this might be a sticky?
    unico grande amore.

  9. #9
    evogel's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2003

    Default Re: [GUIDE] Fake or Real?

    Realize that some manufacturers do not use any kind of seal on their boxes.

    A nice write up indeed but I must say that in over 20 years of buying hundreds of scents, I have yet to encounter a fake. Be careful where you buy from and if the price is too good to be true, think twice.
    Your longevity list can be a general guideline but realize that longevity varies wildly on different people.

    Lastly, some manufacturers who use high percentages of natural ingredients have "batch variation", some more severely than others. This must be taken into account when purchasing these brands.
    It may be totally authentic but it may smell different to someone because it's a different batch.
    Older fragrances may deepen as they age and last longer as well. Alternatively, top notes may fade/go off with age yet the scent is still wearable after those fade. There are many variables to consider before labeling something a fake.

  10. #10
    Dependent RHM's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Saint Louis, MO
    Blog Entries

    Default Re: [GUIDE] Fake or Real?

    I particularly like this from Helg's Perfumeshrine blog:

    "In order to differentiate a fake from the original product one has to pay attention to certain details: Usually the cap and lid are not quite right and less luxurious than they should. There is no engraving on the bottom of the bottle but rather a stick-on label, or else the etching is badly made. The logo isn't as sharp as the one on official product in stores, denoting lack of the proper equipement to implement it in the first place. The glass can be a little streaky, not uniform, a sign of inferior quality. And of course in a fake too often the smell is off, with overwhelming alcoholic opening or a stickiness later on, and the colour is not as it should be."

    This was exactly the problem I had recently. All of these points were an issue.
    We cannot live only for ourselves. A thousand fibers connect us with our fellow men. ~Herman Melville

  11. #11

    Default Re: [GUIDE] Fake or Real?

    This is a great guide but sometimes its just too hard to tell or some of us like my self do not have a good sense of smell and or seeing. I have bought numerous items off the following people on eBay. I bought chanel coco mademoiselle, Beach walk, and Daisy Dream I took them to a couple dept strs and they confirmed they were authentic. Anyways just thought I would throw my 2 scents (cents) in lol
    I was going to name a couple of the people I bought off but I am going to still with the one I only use now

    thanks and hope you enjoy


  12. #12
    hednic's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    McLean, NYC, & Búzios

    Default Re: [GUIDE] Fake or Real?

    Hadn't seen this thread before today. Any additional information that educates consumers is helpful and welcomed IMO.
    Remember that while it is perfectly acceptable to criticize the content of a post - criticizing the poster is not.
    Mean spirited, nasty, snide, sarcastic, hateful, and rude individuals on Basenotes don't warrant or deserve other individuals' acknowledgement or respect.

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