The COVID-19 pandemic has had a dramatic impact on the way in which we store for magnificence merchandise. Over a 12 months in the past, on-line purchasing was a senseless luxurious, one thing we did from our couches or desks after we had been bored, distracted, or simply could not be bothered with strolling right into a Sephora and swatching 10 totally different shades of lipstick. By spring 2020, although, as half the nation’s magnificence shops shut down at first of the pandemic, on-line purchasing rapidly turned the one choice for these social distancing in cities adhering to shelter-in-place orders, and in consequence, ecommerce noticed a 68 percent growth in year-over-year revenue via March and April.
“Throughout COVID-19, individuals could not go to magnificence salons to get their hair executed or different magnificence remedies,” Daniel Shapiro, vice chairman of name relationships on the mental property safety software program firm Red Points, instructed CelebrityPie. “Then, individuals needed to discover on-line ‘do it your self’ merchandise.”
Having the ability to buy your favourite magnificence merchandise with the clicking of a button is nice, however there is a darkish aspect to the COVID-induced on-line purchasing growth of the previous 12 months: an increase within the sale of counterfeit magnificence merchandise. In response to information collected by Purple Factors, the sale of counterfeit hair- and skin-care merchandise elevated 136 p.c year-over-year by April 2021.
“COVID-19 accelerated ecommerce, and consequently counterfeits have elevated at a lightning pace.”
“Counterfeiting is a matter that has plagued the business for a few years,” Shapiro mentioned. “Nonetheless, COVID-19 accelerated ecommerce, and consequently counterfeits have elevated at a lightning pace. Past the apparent reputational and income damages counterfeit merchandise can have on a enterprise, in some instances, it could possibly pose an excellent higher menace to clients’ well being and security.”
The counterfeits in query are sometimes dupes and knockoffs of on a regular basis objects like Dove cleaning soap, for instance, and are usually produced in China and Southeast Asia. They’re prevalent on giant retail websites like Amazon, which is residence to thousands and thousands of third-party sellers, however that is not to say that all of them are advertising and marketing fakes. As a part of its makes an attempt to crack down on pretend, unregulated merchandise, Amazon launched an initiative referred to as Venture Zero in 2019, and its most important mission has been to take away all counterfeits from the platform. In a latest report, the location revealed that it had blocked the attempted listings of 10 billion counterfeit products and seized greater than two million fakes that had been despatched to its achievement facilities to be shipped to clients in 2020. Up to now 12 months, Amazon has additionally employed 10,000 individuals and invested $700 million into retaining its shops protected from fraud.
Shapiro and Purple Factors work with manufacturers on how to ensure their merchandise aren’t simply copied and bought by unauthorized events, however they’re additionally hoping to coach customers on easy methods to spot a counterfeit merchandise.
“Manufacturers can spotlight features of their product which are essentially the most tough for counterfeiters to repeat completely,” Shapiro mentioned. “This will embody particular particulars on the merchandise’s packaging, particular safety tags, or built-in expertise similar to blockchain, stitching, and cloth on trend merchandise, serial codes, and some other related product particulars.”
In the event you’re a shopper shopping for a product on any web site apart from the model’s official web site, it helps to match costs and take a look at what else the vendor is providing.
“As counterfeiters’ largest benefit over their authorized competitors is to undercut them on worth, manufacturers can define clear pricing tips, underneath which any product bought can be counterfeit,” Shapiro mentioned. “The opposite merchandise a vendor has in inventory is one other good determiner of authenticity. Promoting a restricted vary of merchandise is commonly indicative of counterfeiting.”
One other key indicator, in line with Shapiro, is the protection of the web site, as most established manufacturers will probably have high quality website safety. “That is typically proven with a padlock to the left of the URL in a browser,” he mentioned. “This is a crucial indicator of authenticity.”
Picture Supply: Getty / Iryna Veklich