How to Protect Yourself from Fake Beauty Products

If the price seems too good to be true, it probably is.

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Are You Buying Fake Beauty Products? (3:36)

Have you ever purchased a bottle of your favorite shampoo from the comfort of your couch? You're not alone. The internet has caused online sales of beauty products to skyrocket. The convenience and affordability can be very tempting, but you may want to pause before you click "add to cart." With counterfeit products hitting the market, you're not always buying what you think you are; in fact, some of these online goods can even be hazardous to your health. Lara Miller from the International Anti-Counterfeiting Coalition has the tips you need to know so you can protect yourself. 

How to Tell If It’s Fake

Trying to tell if a beauty or skincare product is fake can be tricky. Sometimes, looking at the bottle will give away whether or not you ordered a fake product. Often, on illegitimate bottles, words are misspelled or the spacing is off. However, there are some good fakes out there that can fool any savvy shopper. When you first open the bottle, smell the product and pay close attention to its consistency and color. If you notice skin irritation, stop using the product immediately and see a doctor if it does not clear up. 

Don’t Trust Customer Reviews

Not all customer reviews are authentic. When shopping online, check out the fine print in the product's description. Also, look at their FAQ or Contact pages. If the company has factory connections or has an unacceptable return policy, you should think twice about ordering their products. 

Inspect Packaging

When ordering a beauty product, ask yourself these questions: Is it sold without packaging? Is it in a package that is low quality with blurry logos, images, or text? When you receive your order, compare the bottle with real customer photos that are on the company’s site. 

Check the Price

Huge discounts on popular, expensive, or even sold-out items is a red flag. If a product does not usually have discounts, it is probably best you steer clear of it. 

Write a Review

If you do receive a fake product, take a few moments to write a customer review or submit a complaint. Online companies take feedback seriously and use information from reviews and complaints to help them weed out criminals trying to pass as legitimate sellers. 

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