Please be warned: There most certainly are people on eBay who sell counterfeit perfume as if it was real. Not only do these people rip off their buyers, they cast doubt on honest and legitimate sellers of genuine perfumes, which is why we're as angry about it as you should be!
Perfumes are big business, and naturally, that means that counterfeit perfume is also big business. There are many reasons that you do NOT want to buy counterfeits (which look just like the real thing!) or other fakes.
For one thing, the fakes are concocted who-knows-where and they don't undergo any kind of testing or regulation, so they may contain all sorts of really icky ingredients, including things that you really would NOT want to put on you skin if you knew they were in there.
Counterfeit fragrance products can cause rashes and other skin problems, the actual fragrance may not smell as good as the original (in fact, it may smell horrid), and the scent usually doesn't last very long (sometimes no more than a few minutes!).
These products are put together in questionable circumstances by shady people, after all. They just want to rip you off, not provide you with a quality product. I wouldn't want to give them my money, would you? And I certainly wouldn't want to put untested, unknown chemicals on my skin!
Just in case you want or need to know, you can take any perfume to Myer, David Jones, and other good-quality stores that have perfume deparments or which specialise in perfumes, and have them look at any product you receive, to verify if it is genuine. It's a good idea to take it to more than one store, to get several expert opinions.
Spotting someone selling fakes isn't always easy, but there are some things to look for and keep in mind.
First, and this is always good advice no matter what you're looking for,
check the seller's feedback. Look at the patterns in the feedback, and particularly look for a pattern of people complaining about the perfumes being fake. Pay attention to the responses the seller has made, and look at the feedback they've left for their buyers and see if there's a pattern there.
Be suspicious of people selling perfumes for very low prices, especially if they
always sell perfumes very cheaply and have a pattern and history of selling expensive perfumes for very low prices. It's a simple fact that perfumes cost money even if you buy them wholesale, and expensive perfumes are expensive, even at wholesale prices (they're just less expensive than retail). Selling very cheaply on a regular basis should put someone out of business, unless they're buying it very cheaply (and counterfeits can, indeed, be purchased at absurdly low cost!).
Be very, very wary of newer sellers offering brand-name anything, including perfume. They may be completely legitimate, but it's a pretty well established fact that many people sign up for eBay, sell fakes and rip people off until they get caught, and then disappear without a trace. Don't be caught by one of these people. Look for established eBay users who have a good reputation and who are willing to answer your questions.
What it comes down to is that legitimate sellers will do everything they can to put you at ease and make you feel comfortable buying from them. Look for those sellers who are willing to answer any and all of your questions (and it's not a bad idea to ask them about their shipping, as perfumes are Class III Dangerous Liquids and require special shipping considerations). Less established sellers may be legitimate, but they may not, and when it comes to something like perfume, which is not only costly but also has the potential to make you sick or be confiscated by the authorities if it's not real or if it's shipped improperly (leaving you, the buyer, out of pocket), it's smart to look for trusted, reliable perfume dealers who ship legally and sell only legitimate products.
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25 July 2006
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