Handbags are an essential part of any wardrobe, but it can be hard to tell the difference between a designer original and a dupe. It’s easy to get fooled into buying something that isn’t real, and in some cases, you might not even be aware that you’ve been duped until it’s too late. Fortunately, some tell-tale signs can help you spot a fake bag from a mile away.

Here are 10 ways to spot a fake bag and tell if your handbag is an authentic designer original or just a dupe.

1. Quality of Material

A designer bag is typically made from premium materials such as high-quality leather or canvas. If the material feels like plastic or very thin fabric, chances are it’s not an authentic bag.

For instance, designer bags are usually made with full-grain leather, which is the highest quality of leather available. It’s strong and durable, making it perfect for a designer bag that needs to last for years.

On the other hand, fake bags are often made from lower-quality materials like vinyl or faux leather, which will feel much thinner and less durable.

2. Stitching & Seams

Examine the stitching on the bag carefully; designer bags should have neat, evenly spaced stitches, while dupes often have uneven or sloppy stitching. Also, check for loose threads and unsecured seams; this is another sign of a fake bag.

If you’re examining a leather bag, look for edges that have been burnished or painted. This extra step of craftsmanship is often skipped on fake bags. Therefore, if the edges appear unfinished, it’s likely not a designer original.

Handbag Dupe or Designer Original: How to Spot a Fake Bag

3. Logo Placement & Quality

The logo should always be prominently displayed on the front of the bag, and it should be crisp and clear with no smudges or blurriness. On genuine bags, they will also have raised edges and 3D detailing.

Dupes usually have flat logos with no detail work and may use different fonts than what would be found on an original product.

For instance, foldable bags with wheels and hand bags with a logo on the side should have properly aligned logos; if the logo is off-centre or crooked, it’s likely not an authentic bag.

4. Zippers & Hardware

A real designer handbag will use top-quality metal hardware like gold, silver or brass for accents such as handles and zippers; if these pieces are made from plastic, then it’s likely not an authentic item.

Additionally, check for smooth gliding zippers; if they jam or catch easily, then it could be another sign of counterfeit goods. If the zipper has a logo, make sure it lines up with the manufacturer’s original logo.

5. Tags & Labels

Designer labels should include all required information, such as brand name, style number/name, size and country of origin, clearly printed in both English letters/numbers as well as French (if applicable).

If any of these details appear blurry or difficult to read, then it could indicate that the tag is fake or has been tampered with in some way, so further investigation may be necessary here too.

6. Interior Lining & Pockets

Genuine bags feature interior pockets lined with soft fabric or leather, while fake ones often have cheap polyester lining and no pockets at all (or just one). In addition to this, look out for poorly finished seams inside the lining, which can give away its authenticity status quite easily.

If the bag contains a serial number, it should match the one printed on the tag. If it doesn’t match, then there is a good chance that the bag is not an authentic product.

7. Price Tag

If something seems too good to be true when it comes to pricing – It usually is! Designer bags come with hefty price tags due to their quality construction, so if you find one advertised at unusually low prices, then take caution – chances are it’s counterfeit.

For instance, if you see a designer tote bag priced at $75, it’s highly unlikely that it is the real deal. So if the price tag seems off, then do more research before making any purchases.

Handbag Dupe or Designer Original: Price Tag

8 . Seller Reputation

Before purchasing anything online, research the seller’s reputation first by looking for reviews from past customers. This will give you an indication of how reliable they may be.

Additionally, only buy from sites that offer secure payment methods, such as PayPal checkout – this ensures that your purchase is safe.

9 . Shipping Time

Pay attention to how long the shipping time takes – genuine items should arrive within reasonable timeframes, while fakes might take longer due to their lower-quality production methods.

Similarly, if the item arrives via an untraceable shipping method or from overseas, then that could be a sign of counterfeiting. So, if you’re suspicious, contact the seller to ask them more questions.

10.    Return Policies

Finally, always look out for any return policies that the seller may have in place – if they are not offering a return policy or one that doesn’t provide complete satisfaction, then it could be a sign of a fake bag. Therefore, make sure to read through the return policy before making a purchase.

With these tips, you can quickly tell the difference between an authentic designer bag and a dupe.  Authentic designer bags are well-crafted and should last you for years, while counterfeits may only last a few months or even less.


Whether you’re shopping at a store or online, these tips can help you differentiate between an authentic designer handbag and its cheaper counterpart. Checking details like material quality, labelling accuracy, hardware type, price tag, seller reputation, shipping time, etcetera, can help make sure that your new handbag is actually worth what you pay for.

These methods may seem tedious, but they’re well worth doing in order to ensure maximum satisfaction when making your next luxury purchase.

By following these tips closely -you’ll always know exactly what kind of product you’re getting before spending your hard-earned money.

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