Counterfeit Makeup

Animal Feces in Products?

The counterfeit market is not just exclusive to fake designer clothing and handbags anymore, but now the uprise of counterfeit makeup is taking over the beauty industry. Counterfeit makeup can be found online and even in stores. Websites like eBay and Amazon have been found to have products like eyeshadow, lip sticks, and fragrances containing toxic chemicals. These websites have tried their hardest to regulate these products, but there are always fake brands that sneak their way in. Some may believe that they are getting a good deal, but all in all there are major health hazards that come along with them. Users of counterfeit makeup have experienced rashes, eye infections like pink eye and stis, swollen lips, and chemical burns. These products can also lead to infertility and high blood pressure. After these products were tested, there was found to be arsenic, mercury, cyanide, lead, rat feces, and human urine in the makeup. The majority of these products are manufactured in China. According to CBS, these counterfeit products have been purchased from vendors and markets in downtown Los Angeles. Customs officers believe that the products are being shipped in illegally from China through the Southern Californian sea ports. There have been officers stationed at Long Beach trying their best to inspect shipments of products from China and Hong Kong that are being smuggled illegally. Last year there were numbers of counterfeit makeup costing almost $1.4 billion dollars.

The way to identify counterfeit makeup is to search for items that have an unusually low or high price, inconsistent labeling, the formula, and poor-quality packaging. Counterfeit makeup is usually sold in bulk so that is why the prices are at a lower price. When a fake product is in high demand that is usually because the real product has a high demand itself, so therefore when the product is sold out then customers are willing to pay more for something that isn’t easily accessible. The majority of counterfeit makeup is not identical to the real product. They can have colors that don’t match, fonts that are not the same, and even the size of the component could be bigger or smaller than what it actually is. Along with packaging another difference could be the formula of the product. Fake eyeshadows, blushes, and powders usually have a thinner/ chalkier consistency. The smell of the product can even be a way to determine the differences. If the product smells like chemicals then that could be an obvious indication. The last way to indicate if the product that is being purchased is fake, is if it has poor-quality packaging. Usually low quality products are in low quality components that are either plastic or metal. However, the makers of these fake products have become professionals at making the packing look like the real thing.

Students around Cape Henry were appalled to hear what was being put into counterfeit makeup. Madeline Ripa ‘20 and Caroline Dixon ‘20, both lovers of makeup, say that they have seen fake products at stores like “Five Below, TJ Maxx,” and plenty of websites. Madeline and Caroline do not think it’s fair for the brand owner to be having other companies copying their products. Caroline believes that the only way to stop this is to “regulate” these websites online. From a male standpoint, Beau Gwaltney ‘20, also believes that this is “disgusting.” Along with Beau, Madeline, and Caroline many students in the Cape Henry community answered a question as to what they would if they knew animal feces were in their products that they use on a day to day basis. The majority of the students answered and said that they would throw the makeup away. The rest said that they would either contact the company or do nothing about it, but no one said they would keep it if it had no affect on them.