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How To Spot Fake Shoes – 3 Smart Shoe Shopping Tips

Buying a pair of shoes is equivalent to an investment. Depending on our intended use, we purchase shoes for a multitude of reasons such as shoes for sports, shoes for style or basic shoes to protect our feet. Because shoes are a vital part of our everyday life, this doesn’t always come cheap and because of that, we want to make sure that the ones we buy are genuine. Although, how can you be assured of a shoe’s authenticity if there are so many fakes out in the market especially when you purchase online? Well, we’ve got you covered! Read on to find out how to spot fake shoes and determine whether or not you’ve got yourself an original pair or not.

how to spot fake shoes - how to tell if shoes are fake

How to Spot Fake Shoes – Tell If Shoes Are Original

1. Box and Packaging


Before even getting to inspect the actual shoe, the usual telltale sign of a fake pair is its box and packaging. If the shoe is fake, you may notice that the cardboard box used is thin and cheap looking. It may already have rips and creases. Genuine shoes are usually packaged in a sturdy box that can withstand wear and tear. Also inspect the stickers and markings on the box. See if the font and spacing used looks authentic and measurements are accurate. If you are purchasing a pair with no known half sizes and the box says for example, size 11.5, you know that it’s a fake pair. Real pairs also have the “Suggested Retail Price” stickers on the box whereas fakes ones do not. Watch out for misspelled words on the box as well as off colors and crooked stickers.

READ MORE: Online Shoe Buying Tips for Boots

2. Shape and Material


The next step is to tell if shoes are fake is to check the flesh. While some may have difficulty in scrutinizing a pair of shoes to tell if they are real or fake, the giveaway is usually in its material. Check every detail of the shoe down to the last stitch. Are the seams coming undone? Is there a sticker instead of the usual hologram? Does the material smell different and not genuine leather? Check logo placements if they are crooked and if the sole does not look like it was made with high-quality materials. Knock offs will usually cut corners to save money so if the shoe is supposed to be made of 100% leather, make sure that it is. That’s the perfect way to spot fake shoes

READ MORE: Choosing the Best Hiking Boots for Women & Men

3. Price


Before you even make a purchase, do your research. Check on the internet and ask some friends to find out how much usually your desired pair costs. If you think it’s too good to be true, chances are, your instincts are right. We all love a bargain but if the shoe retails for 200 dollars but is being sold at only 50 dollars then something is definitely not right. Never jump onto an impulsive buy. Usually, sellers create these deals to give a buyer the pretense that they are in for a steal but actually, it’s a fake pair that will probably be damaged after being worn a few times.

READ MORE: Fun Story: Woman Carry Man to Protect Shoes

♦Bonus Tips♦


  • Insole Tags- most shoes come with tags on the insoles (or tongue). If you don’t know how to spot fake shoes, this is the most straightforward way.
  • Check if the brand made that colorway- when you’re on eBay, you see dozens of pairs of shoes in different colors. Do your research and see if the brand ever even made it in that color. If not, then it’s probably fake.
  • Do the photo test- Some shoes can undergo the photo test. Depending on what material was used, if you take a flash photo of the pair, and it’s reflective on the photo then the shoes are real. If they aren’t and the material looks dull on the photo then it probably isn’t.
  • Don’t buy online from sellers that only use stock photo- as much as possible, if you are buying online, ask the seller to take a photo of the actual pair that you are purchasing and not some stock photo he got on the internet.

For our final tip, the shoe experts: “Whatever path you walk, may you walk with comfortable shoes.”

READ MORE: Find the Right Shoes in Less Time


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