How to Avoid Unknowingly Buying Fake Beauty Products Online

fake beauty products

Online shopping has made it easier than ever for fraudulent companies and individuals to sell fake beauty products to unknowing consumers. A recent article published in New Beauty Magazine explains how some large retailers like Amazon, Walmart, and eBay have even become caught up in the mix. Unfortunately, buying and using counterfeit cosmetics isn’t just a matter of not getting the results you’d hoped for. Some of these fake products have been tested and shown to contain toxic ingredients that could be harmful to your health. Here’s what you need to know to avoid buying fake and potentially dangerous beauty products by mistake.

How to Spot Fake Beauty Products

Counterfeit products can be difficult to distinguish from the real thing, especially if you’re shopping online. Knockoffs are getting better and better at replicating familiar labels and packaging, and some will try to pass off expired products that are still in their original containers. In some cases, harmful substances like cyanide, arsenic, lead, mercury, urine, and even rat droppings have been found in these fake formulas that many people are unknowingly paying money for online.

Therefore, if you begin to develop a rash, allergic reaction, or other severe side effect after using a particular product, bring it with you to your dermatologist’s office to try to find the cause. I once had a woman come into my Miami office with a bad reaction to a retinol product. After sending the bottle to the company, we discovered that it was a counterfeit product with a similar label.

When buying skincare online, one of the biggest red flags to watch out for is a significant price difference between what you’re used to paying for a name-brand product and what’s being sold online. If you come across a price that seems too good to be true, it probably is. The little bit of money you might save buying a fake skincare product could end up costing you much more in the long run, especially if you develop an adverse reaction to its unknown ingredients.

Be Wary of Third-Party Beauty Retailers

You might think that buying from a trusted website like Amazon, Walmart, or eBay is a good way to avoid fraudulent activity, but the truth is that any website that allows third-party sales could be the perfect outlet for fake products. Although these companies might do their best to try to dissuade knockoff sellers, there are so many out there that it is nearly impossible to weed them all out. Even worse still, many people who unknowingly buy these fake cosmetics from third-party sites never realize it, so they end up thinking the brand or product doesn’t work.

To avoid this problem altogether, do not purchase makeup, cleansers, moisturizers, or other beauty products from a third-party seller or other questionable websites. Your health could be on the line if you mistakenly use counterfeit beauty products that illegally contain toxic ingredients.

Where to Safely Purchase Skincare Products

While you should avoid buying skincare from Amazon, eBay, and other similar websites, this doesn’t mean you cannot buy skincare online at all. If you want to shop online, we recommend purchasing skincare products directly from your doctor or online from, Exclusive Beauty Club, or directly from the brand’s website. Make sure that the brand website you are on is the brand’s webpage and not a fake site. Look closely for any misspelled words in the brand’s name or on the product labels. Poor grammar and improper English are other dead giveaways of a fake site. You can also check the page’s URL at the top of your screen. Secure connections begin with “https” rather than “http.” This is especially important to look for when you’re on the checkout screen before you enter your credit card information. If you don’t see signs of a secure connection, contact the brand directly and inquire about the security of your online purchase.

The Bottom Line

Fake beauty products are everywhere, and you cannot rely on big-name third-party retailers to keep you protected. The best way to know for sure that the skincare products you’re buying are real is to only make purchases through your doctor or a trusted website such as Skin Type Solutions or the brand’s real webpage.

Another benefit of purchasing products through your physician is that you will know exactly which ones are right for your skin type and needs. If you don’t know your Baumann Skin Type already, find a Skin Type Solutions physician partner near you to take the quiz and get a customized skincare regimen built for your skin.

April 30, 2018 Beauty, Skincare