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There are so many alluring deals in the flea market for cosmetics that you are lured into buying at least a piece or two of a nice bright lipstick that claims to be MAC or you end up buying Maybelline Colossal Kohl that is available for way lesser than what you get in stores. But wait, are these the genuine brands they claim to be or just another batch of counterfeit cosmetics? Whats the way to know? The vendors have so real explanations to prove these cosmetics to be real that you are convinced beyond doubt given the fact that the packaging looks so similar and it even has a barcode. But barcodes can be misleading and so can be the packaging.

Fake cosmetics can be injurious and being an aware customer, you must be able to tell the difference between fake vs real. Lets look at some tips to differentiate real cosmetics from counterfeit ones and see how to avoid getting fooled into buying the fake ones.

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1. Packaging: Packaging might not be an obvious indicator to identify a fake product, however, in many cases it is. To be able to differentiate between a fake and a real product just by looking at the packaging, you must be well informed about the packaging the real ones come with. Not just that, a regular update on any official change in packaging is also important for you to avoid getting confused between a fake package and an updated one. There are basic things to know about real brand packaging that a customer must be aware of, for e.g., a MAC eye shadow never comes with an applicator however, fake ones have applicator inside the box. Also, there are fake MAC eye shadow pellets that come in cases that in no way resemble any MAC product packaging. Other indicators of phoniness are smaller or bigger size of the package, worn out corners and unfinished rims etc.
2. Fonts and color: This is one of the major litmus tests for identifying fake vs. real cosmetics. More often than not, phony cosmetics would have a bleaker font and extra glossy color on the packaging. While most brands come with matte finish and easy-to-eye colors, the fake ones would exhibit a rather unpolished look with painted brand names instead of carved ones. If you are a keen observer, you will notice a subtle difference in fonts as well. The fonts of real products are bold and clear carefully put together with letters not too far or too close to each other. Whereas on fake cosmetics, the fonts are lighter and hard to read with a lot of space between letters. Sometimes, very rarely though, there are minor spelling alterations as well.
3.Printed Product Details: This is tricky yet a good-to-know information. Real cosmetics have batch number and product details printed on the package whereas fake ones might miss out on these. Take for example a MAC lipstick. It will have the shade details at the bottom of the stick whereas a fake MAC lipstick will show you the shade number and thats it. Consider checking the batch number of your product because fake products most likely wont have it.
4.Intricate details: Apart from all the obvious differences between pirated and real, there are things that are often left unattended. The applicator brush of a mascara, odor of the product, lid of a lip or an eye pencil, shape of the tip of a lipstick, consistency of a lip gloss, hues of an eye pencil, mass of the product, and lot other details are helpful towards identifying a fake product. The real products are expensive because they are quality items and the best way to identify a fake item is to check the quality of the product.
5.Price: If a shopkeeper offers 80% discount on a cosmetic product, think twice. Or maybe thrice! Cosmetics dont come in a margin that allows huge discounts. The Maybelline Colossal kohl pencils you buy from a flea market are available for 50 bucks and a real pencil cant cost you anything less than 175 or so even after a discount offer.

In spite of knowing all the tricks to identify fake cosmetics, there are chances of getting fooled by the clever vendors and ending up buying a hazardous pirated product that holds the potential to harm your skin and brain because of high levels copper, arsenic, cadmium, lead and mercury.

In this world of duplicate products, the best way to avoid being duped is to buy your cosmetics from trusted stores like New You or from well-known online cosmetic stores. Nykaa.com, an online store for cosmetics that offers discounts to a limited extent and guarantees the authenticity of the brands, can be one of your go to places for all your cosmetic needs. The brighter side of buying cosmetics online is that these sites have a well-defined return and refund policy. So, go ahead and shop your cosmetics carefully.

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