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  1. #1

    Default Help! eBay fake fragrance!

    Hi all. Sorry if I have posted this in the wrong section, but I have a bit of a problem and I think you guys could help me. Sorry it's a bit long!

    I purchased a used 50ml bottle of Angel by Thierry Mugler on eBay a couple of weeks ago, from a seller with 100% positive feedback. This was a total impulse buy, and realising I couldn't quite afford it, I re-sold it on eBay to another buyer.
    After receiving the perfume, my buyer tells me that it is a fake, and that they have been wearing this perfume for 5 years and that this is definitely not Angel. They took it to a Boots chemist, who said that it certainly looks and smells like a very good fake. They took a photo next to another bottle they bought - you can see it here (the bottle I sold is on the right).

    Now, I own a small sample of Angel, and I honestly can't tell the difference between the fragrance I sold and the sample, and both seem to have the same relentless sillage and longevity - but I admit I am new to the scent and do not wear it often, so I haven't become accustomed to the notes. Or maybe my olfactory senses are just rubbish. Either way, there's a definite difference in the colour of the liquids in the photo (Of course, this could be photoshopped, though it's a pretty good job if it is and I don't know why my buyer would bother if she is such an Angel fan.)

    So I asked the original seller I purchased it from, whether she had any info of where she bought it, and told her that it could be a fake. She said that it could not be a fake and that she was unwilling to get involved in the situation with my buyer.

    I asked the buyer to return the fragrance to me and I would issue her a refund.

    My question is - Do any of you Angel aficionados think I have a case against the seller that originally sold the perfume to me? Does the colour of the perfume look like a fake to you? Or does Angel turn this colour when it gets old?
    I'd love to decant and send a sample of it to someone with better knowledge of this fragrance than me, but this stuff is being batted about all over the place now and I'm just sick of paying postage fees, ebay seller fees, plus I made a loss on the sale anyway.

    Even if no one can help me, there's a definite moral to this story: Ebay + fragrance = bad

  2. #2
    hednic's Avatar
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    Default Re: Help! eBay fake fragrance!

    There is always a risk when you buy on Ebay. However, whether it was indeed a fake or not , if the buyer who bought it from you was not happy and was convinced it was a fake, you did the right thing by refunding the money.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Help! eBay fake fragrance!

    Angel is perhaps the most copied fragrance in the world. Many otherwise reliable sellers could have obtained bogus copies thinking it was the real thing. The bottle on the right has a purple hue to it and the original Angel does not turn that color.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Help! eBay fake fragrance!

    I personally don't own Angel.
    But I do know people usually don't like to ship back something they have bought because they have to walk over to their local USPS or what ever they use to ship pay the few and then wait.

    I would simply let then know what happened and if you get no replies, let it go...

  5. #5

    Default Re: Help! eBay fake fragrance!

    I would take up the issue with the person who sold it to you.

    Good luck. This kind of thing does pi$$ me off.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Help! eBay fake fragrance!

    I'm convinced I bought a fake bottle of Angel off eBay before I found this site. It was a gift for a then-girlfriend. It smelled pretty close, but was gone in a couple hours... We all know Angel doesn't behave that way. She didn't know any different and loved it (and we didn't stay together), so no harm, no foul.

    You did the admirable thing returning it though.
    I'm a colognosaurus. Rawr!

  7. #7

    Default Re: Help! eBay fake fragrance!

    Well I've received the perfume back and given her a refund, but seriously, if this is a fake, they should name it I Can't Believe It's Not Angel. The "purple" hue isn't present in person at all, it's blue. I wonder what's going on with that photo. I wore my genuine sample for a day, then the supposed "fake", and I can't tell the difference between the two. Both last ages. I've asked others including my father who has great olfactory sense. If it's a fake it's a bloody genius one.

    I've given it to my sister. She seems to like it. Got to admit I never warmed to Angel, it seems more suited for a car air freshener.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Help! eBay fake fragrance!

    Stay off the Bay.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Help! eBay fake fragrance!

    Quote Originally Posted by MOONB View Post
    Stay off the Bay.
    + 1
    Please feel free to check out my Swap Thread - Patou pour Homme, L'Instant de Guerlain PH Extreme, Dior Homme Intense, Pure Malt, Pure Coffee and many more! Click Here For My Swap Thread

  10. #10
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    Redneck Perfumisto's Avatar
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    Default Re: Help! eBay fake fragrance!

    Quote Originally Posted by fayeee View Post
    Well I've received the perfume back and given her a refund, but seriously, if this is a fake, they should name it I Can't Believe It's Not Angel. The "purple" hue isn't present in person at all, it's blue. I wonder what's going on with that photo. I wore my genuine sample for a day, then the supposed "fake", and I can't tell the difference between the two. Both last ages. I've asked others including my father who has great olfactory sense. If it's a fake it's a bloody genius one.
    There is a good chance that it's not a fake. Personally, after your most recent examinations, I'm especially doubtful that it really is a fake.

    There is an enormous amount of paranoia about fakes out there, and sometimes it's just a bit overwhelming. I see virtue in calling out the fakes, but I also think it's good to call out the false alarms.

    I'll just skip over all the tired old reasons why bottles smell slightly different. They were born on different dates. They are of different ages, and unless they came out at the exact same time, in the exact same batch, even twins from nearly contemporary batches are only fraternal. And there is a reason why we all bitch so much about reformulations. It's because they happen. So if a new bottle smells slightly different, to an "old" lover of a frag,...... HELLO.

    Now for that picture. Sheesh. The bottles are two different sizes, for crying out loud. That means that almost any path length through the juice in the larger bottle is increased significantly, making the juice appear darker. Note also that the bottle on the left is already quite a bit less blue than the ones that you see on the web. It's actually half-purple already. So you're not only seeing the effect in the right-hand bottle - you're seeing it on the left, too. What's going on? Well, it's because if you vary the illumination of the bottles (i.e., the intensity of the incident light), you can get drastic color differences. Not only that - depending upon how the light got to the juice, it may already be picking up color effects, just by reflecting off things. Now, if you look in the upper right corner of the picture, you will see the corner of a red object of some kind. In table-top cologne bottle photo shoots, nearby objects can really throw off the tint sometimes. You have to be DAMN careful when you compare juice colors, even in bottles of exactly the same size, if the lighting isn't identical, or favors one bottle over the other.

    I would bet money that the photo in question was the WORST shot of the two frags, and that with different, more intense lighting, they're both blue, just like you observe. The person may have wanted to show you the maximum difference to prove their point, but showing you the minimum difference might have given them pause to consider that - you know what?.... Maybe they're both real.

    There is also one other detail about the bottles that makes me think they're both legit. However, in the interest of using it again, I'm keeping it a secret.

    I rest my case with exhibits A, B, and C. Same blue juice ("Dawn Eau de Kitchen Sink") in different clear glasses of different diameters and volumes, under 3 different lightings: intense, high, medium. This is a fairly pure blue - I can imagine a more reddish blue shifting rather dramatically to purple. Bottom line, lighting is a tricky thing.






    * * * *

  11. #11

    Default Re: Help! eBay fake fragrance!

    hi, I'm new to this site, but just experienced a possible fake from ebay as well. bought a bottle of bleu de chanel (since the GF liked it on me) from a seller with almost 100% positive reviews out of 200 reviews.

    it came pretty quick and was 20 bucks less than in stores. opened it up and saw that the glass had imperfections in it, not one side was smooth, and the cap has small scuff marks (package was sealed). I checked youtube for reviews and people said it was supposed to have a serial number printed on the back and a magnetic cap, this bottle had neither.

    the next day I went and bought a bottle at sephora and compared them side by side, there was a BIG difference in quality. both smelled the same right when sprayed on, but the ebay bottle does not change to the woody smell I get from the sephora bottle. even the ingredients printed on the package were spelled differently.

    I contacted the seller and told them it may be a defective bottle, I did not want to accuse them of selling fakes, since I am new to fragrances and was not 100% sure. they said they only sell genuine new top quality stuff, and different bottles come from different factories so they all look different. I did not believe it so asked him for a refund in which he told me I would lose 25% and will have to pay shipping. too bad they weren't as nice as you are!

    just sent it back today. I lost some money by trying to save money. For fragrances, I will stick to trusted stores/retailers from now on to save myself from some stress.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Help! eBay fake fragrance!

    Welcome to Basenotes!

    If you have a dark blue bottle WITHOUT a magnetic cap, then it's almost certainly a fake. If you have a frosted clear bottle without a magnetic cap, then you just have the aftershave. I'm presuming you're talking some kind of dark blue bottle of EDT. The real stuff has extreme longevity - you will smell it 12 hours later. I suspect you really do have a fake, if your bottle is dark blue and no magnetic cap.

    BTW, I love Bleu. My wife likes it on me, too.
    * * * *

  13. #13

    Default Re: Help! eBay fake fragrance!

    Quote Originally Posted by Redneck Perfumisto View Post
    There is a good chance that it's not a fake. Personally, after your most recent examinations, I'm especially doubtful that it really is a fake.

    There is an enormous amount of paranoia about fakes out there, and sometimes it's just a bit overwhelming. I see virtue in calling out the fakes, but I also think it's good to call out the false alarms.

    I'll just skip over all the tired old reasons why bottles smell slightly different. They were born on different dates. They are of different ages, and unless they came out at the exact same time, in the exact same batch, even twins from nearly contemporary batches are only fraternal. And there is a reason why we all bitch so much about reformulations. It's because they happen. So if a new bottle smells slightly different, to an "old" lover of a frag,...... HELLO.

    Now for that picture. Sheesh. The bottles are two different sizes, for crying out loud. That means that almost any path length through the juice in the larger bottle is increased significantly, making the juice appear darker. Note also that the bottle on the left is already quite a bit less blue than the ones that you see on the web. It's actually half-purple already. So you're not only seeing the effect in the right-hand bottle - you're seeing it on the left, too. What's going on? Well, it's because if you vary the illumination of the bottles (i.e., the intensity of the incident light), you can get drastic color differences. Not only that - depending upon how the light got to the juice, it may already be picking up color effects, just by reflecting off things. Now, if you look in the upper right corner of the picture, you will see the corner of a red object of some kind. In table-top cologne bottle photo shoots, nearby objects can really throw off the tint sometimes. You have to be DAMN careful when you compare juice colors, even in bottles of exactly the same size, if the lighting isn't identical, or favors one bottle over the other.

    I would bet money that the photo in question was the WORST shot of the two frags, and that with different, more intense lighting, they're both blue, just like you observe. The person may have wanted to show you the maximum difference to prove their point, but showing you the minimum difference might have given them pause to consider that - you know what?.... Maybe they're both real.

    There is also one other detail about the bottles that makes me think they're both legit. However, in the interest of using it again, I'm keeping it a secret.

    I rest my case with exhibits A, B, and C. Same blue juice ("Dawn Eau de Kitchen Sink") in different clear glasses of different diameters and volumes, under 3 different lightings: intense, high, medium. This is a fairly pure blue - I can imagine a more reddish blue shifting rather dramatically to purple. Bottom line, lighting is a tricky thing.






    Great post RP and very informative too!

  14. #14
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    knit at nite's Avatar
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    Default Re: Help! eBay fake fragrance!

    Oh fayeee, anyone who has been using Angel continually for 5 years has clearly ruined their nose and couldn't possibly sniff out a fake

    JUST KIDDING

    I agree with Redneck Perfumisto about the rampant paranoia about fakes on eBay. However, fake or not, you did the ethical thing with your buyer. Although you did not make a profit ( chalk it up to the cost of doing business) you should still get good feedback for the transaction, too.

    Welcome to Basenotes- may you sniff in good health!
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    Every great perfume deserves a good home

  15. #15

    Default Re: Help! eBay fake fragrance!

    Quote Originally Posted by MrBuoy View Post
    I did not believe it so asked him for a refund in which he told me I would lose 25% and will have to pay shipping. too bad they weren't as nice as you are!

    just sent it back today. I lost some money by trying to save money. For fragrances, I will stick to trusted stores/retailers from now on to save myself from some stress.
    There is no reason you should be losing any money, if the item was qualified for appropriate PayPal protection programs, you follow this process and demand a full refund:

    http://pages.ebay.com/help/buy/item-not-received.html

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