Thursday, July 14, 2011

The Real Deal

I think that many of us can admit to buying fake designer products or replicas of the originals either by choice or simply not knowing what key characteristics to lookout for. As much as I love designer products, the prices don't really make it easy on most to just go out and buy a Gucci handbag or a pair or Chanel sunglasses on a whim. So it may be tempting to snatch up the impostor instead! However for those who are  on the hunt for the real deal, it's crucial to know what distinguishes a fake product from a real product before you dish out hundreds and thousands of dollars! If you are purchasing a name brand item from any other website than the actual designer's website, or are buying from any store other than the authentic store, here are a few tips to keep in mind!

-Make sure to investigate the website you are contemplating buying from! Perhaps Google reviews for the online store or check to see if there have been any complaints regarding fake goods!

-Search for a checklist of key characteristics that all products of a particular designer have. This can be particularly helpful when you are planning on purchasing a product from an actual store and not one online. If you aren't sure about the legitimacy of a product right away, step back, find a list online, and check off the characteristics as you see them! 

-Trust your gut instinct. If the store or online website doesn't look like a place you can trust, don't buy it!  

I know that these tips are pretty obvious, but we aren't talking about buying something for just a few dollars. It's important to know about whatever you are purchasing before you spend a large sum of cash. Of course if you just want to avoid these sorts of issues all together, I say just go ahead and get the cheap replica! It can be just as cute and useful as the real thing for a fraction of the price! Just make sure it is a legal product and not one that hasn't been approved. That would be bad...

In the spirit of designer brands, I found a few designer consignment stores that sell gently used name brand products! The prices are still fairly expensive but if you want to treat yourself, these sites provide products that are like new!

This site has just about everything from handbags to clothing, to jewelry! They have all the classics like Louis Vuitton, Burberry, Prada, as well as many other notable designers. The prices do climb fairly high, but you don't have to worry about the possibility of being ripped off.

This online consignment store has been around since 1996 and the people working there definitely know the real from the fake! Planning on selling? The site splits the cost 50/50 and require the seller to email them with a list of the items you are planning on selling beforehand. 
What exactly inspired me to write about these issues in today's post you ask? I took a trip down to Value Village today and spotted a pair of Dior sandals! They looked fairly authentic when I picked them up and inspected them but the price made me question myself. I figured they were only $6.99 so even if they turned out to be fakes, I wouldn't be too disappointed. When I got home I found a checklist of characteristics that real Dior shoes have and found that the pair that were sitting beside me were in fact the real deal! Needless to say I was very excited. Because they were used, there are a few worn spots but that's to be expected. I suppose a pricer's lack of designer brand knowledge is a fashion lover's gain!

I've attached a few photos of the sandals as well as a few of the characteristics that distinguished these shoes as the real deal rather than a fake pair!

Large "Dior" in silver on insole: ✓
Special code on the inside of sandal strap: ✓

Lock and key accents!

Made in Italy with European sizing: ✓
Embossed markings on sole rather than printed: ✓

Hopefully this post has provided you with some new insight! Don't be fooled by an impostor! Make sure you get the real deal!

Giveaway Reminder: If you haven't entered the 'Girly Giveaway' contest yet, simply like 'The Retail Therapy Diaries' on Facebook, write your favorite summer trend on the wall, and you will be automatically entered! Don't have a Facebook? Don't feel comfortable writing on the wall? Just email me your response to and you can be entered in the drawing that way as well! Want to take a peek at the prizes? Find pictures as well as contest rules here:

Also as a reminder, you don't have to be from the states to enter! The contest is open to all! Good luck everyone!

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