Fake Louis Vuitton Bags: 9 Easy Ways to Spot Them

A pioneer in monogram bags, Louis Vuitton has produced countless handcrafted bags that women and men alike covet. Even if their artisanal bags come with a hefty price tag, Hollywood celebrities to common folk want to get their hands on one (or several).

This comes as no surprise given their top grade Italian leather and precise craftsmanship. Each bag comes with a whole lot of time, love and effort.

The classic Louis Vuitton logo embellished on monogrammed leatherThe classic Louis Vuitton logo embellished on monogrammed leather

The Hollywood favorite Louis Vuitton "Keepall" duffel bagThe Hollywood favorite Louis Vuitton “Keepall” duffel bag

Louis Vuitton showcases its "Manhattan" bagLouis Vuitton showcases its “Manhattan” bag

Currently, Louis Vuitton houses Michelle Williams and Alicia Vikander as their main endorsers. Other under-the-radar LV faces include Jaden Smith, Cate Blanchett, and Jennifer Connelly.

Some of the celebrities who go gaga over Louis Vuitton include Selena Gomez, the Kardashians, Taylor Swift, Rihanna and Miranda Kerr. Check out more celebrities who love their LV’s below.

Miranda Kerr, Selena Gomez and Rihanna love their Louis Vuitton pursesMiranda Kerr, Selena Gomez and Rihanna love their Louis Vuitton purses

Hilary Duff gleefully strolls through the Los Angeles Airport (LAX) with her two-piece Louis Vuitton luggageHilary Duff gleefully strolls through the Los Angeles Airport (LAX) with her two-piece Louis Vuitton luggage

Cherries, pinks, and furry things: Kim Kardashian, Reese Witherspoon and Kelly Osbourne prefer their Louis Vuitton with a dash of cutenessCherries, pinks, and furry things: Kim Kardashian, Reese Witherspoon and Kelly Osbourne prefer their Louis Vuitton with a dash of cuteness

Taylor Swift dresses up her casual outfit with a Louis Vuitton x Christian Louboutin "Shopping Bag"Taylor Swift dresses up her casual outfit with a Louis Vuitton x Christian Louboutin “Shopping Bag”

Alicia Vikander, Dita Von Teese and Christina Milian pick out variations of the infamous LV monogramAlicia Vikander, Dita Von Teese and Christina Milian pick out variations of the infamous LV monogram

Unfortunately, with the rise of the brand’s popularity also come the counterfeiters. Fake Louis Vuitton bags have dominated the e-commerce industry, resulting in numerous eBay sellers who offer knockoffs at ridiculously low prices.

Don’t worry – all hope is not lost. We have the know-how on busting those fake Louis Vuittons, saving yourself the money and hassle of falling prey to counterfeit bag predators.

Without further ado, we bring you nine easy ways to tell whether your LV is the real deal:


1. The workmanship is top notch artisanal.

Louis Vuitton bag detail

One of the more common ways to know if a bag is authentic or not is to check its workmanship. Just like most luxury bags, an authentic Louis Vuitton will have perfectly aligned stitches that are same in length. In fact, the artisans behind these bags are so skilled that the number of stitches on one handle matches the other.

For Louis Vuitton bags, the stitching thread is more of a mustard color than a brighter yellow hue.

The leather pieces that make up the bag are perfectly cut and fitted with each other. If there are creases, bubbles and misalignment due to bad fitting, you might want to put that bag down.

2. The hardware is beautifully crafted from brass.

Louis Vuitton bag detail

Bag connoiseurs would know that the next thing to check for is hardware. Louis Vuitton has been using top grade brass hardware that usually comes in shiny or matte. For shiny zippers and locks, do a reflection test – the brass should reflect as a mirror would.

The zippers should not snag when you try to unzip the bag. Louis Vuitton also manufactures their own zippers and does not use YKK or other branded zippers.

Hardware should not be covered in plastic. Counterfeit bag makers wrap the hardware in plastic to prevent them from tarnishing right away. Quality hardware will not tarnish and is usually uncovered.

3. The pattern should be neat and symmetrical.

Louis Vuitton bag detail

Another obvious thing to look at in monogram bags is the shell pattern. For Louis Vuitton, the classic LV logo should be symmetrical and the letter L should always be lower than the V. If the letters are wonky and not perfectly aligned, the bag is not authentic.

It is also important to note the placing and consistency of the monogram pattern. If you look at the pattern diagonally, the order of one strip should be a fleur de lis, a circle, another fleur de lis, then the LV logo. The strip alternating it should contain only the fleur de lis symbol.

For logo embellishments, check that they are symmetrical and beautifully crafted. The maison logo usually writes “Louis Vuitton Paris” in two lines.

4. The vachetta leather oxidizes and darkens over time.

Louis Vuitton bag detail

The leather strips that run across and make up the handles are called vachetta leather. Vachetta leather is made out of natural, untreated European calf hide that darkens with oxidation over time.

If the strips stay a pale color over time, it is fake. The leather should darken into a beautiful golden shade as it ages.

5. The handle trim should be a darker shade of red, not bright red.

Louis Vuitton bag detail

There are many great things about Louis Vuitton monogram bags that keep us preoccupied. To the hawk eyed, one lesser known detail is the red trim that runs along the vachetta leather.

You can easily tell a fake Louis Vuitton bag from an original one from the shade of the trim. The authentic ones will run closer to burgundy (but not quite) while counterfeits will usually be a brighter shade of red.

Low quality Louis Vuitton counterfeits will also have the trim peeling off over a short amount of time.


6. A date code should be found on the lining.

Louis Vuitton bag detail

Each Louis Vuitton bag comes with a date code, which is basically a little leather tag where letters and numbers are embossed to note where and when the bag was made.

Unlike other bags, Louis Vuitton date codes are a little harder to find since they’re tucked within the lining. One thing is for sure: an authentic LV will always have a date code.

In some cases, the date codes are stamped into the lining.

7. Know your dust bag and box history.

Counterfeiters often get lazy when it comes to details. A good way to catch fake products is to know your history of Louis Vuitton dust bags and boxes.

Dust bags before 2004 are made out of beige flannel with the LV logo on it and brown drawstrings. Some of the older bags may have blue drawstrings on them, and some have felt-like material that have jagged cut edges.

From 2004 to 2016, the beige dustbag is made out of flannel or linen. A perfectly symmetrical and centered LV logo is printed in brown on it. A small white tag saying where the bag was made can be found inside.

In 2016, Louis Vuitton revamped their packaging. All their boxes are orange with navy blue text. The dust bags followed suit, turning into a cream color with navy blue writing.

8. Use your sense of smell.

This one takes some time to practice. It’s good to know what authentic leather smells like so you can easily set it apart from synthetic ones.

Also, if the bag reeks of chemicals, you might want to reconsider your purchase.

9. Common sense, really.

If you have a bag that retails for $1,000 and is being sold to you at $100, there is much reason to be wary. Research the original retail price online before considering a purchase.

Louis Vuitton also lists the retailers where their bags can be purchased. The brand also limits online resellers, so be careful of purchasing bags over the internet.

Some myths:

1. “The leather will never cut off at the LV logo.”

Some have claimed that pieces of leather will usually not cut off at the LV logo, but that is not necessarily true. For smaller bags, the logos are cut off at the edge. One thing that you can check for, however, is if all the logos cut off at the same point. This means that the pattern is symmetrical.

2. “Louis Vuitton does not invert their logo.”

Again, this is not true. For models that use a single continuous leather piece such as the Keepall, one side will have inverted logos on it.


Louis Vuitton is continuously coming up with designs outside of the classic ones, so it’s good to know their bags well. A great way to familiarize yourself is to study their photos online.

If you’re in doubt about a purchase you made, you can call Louis Vuitton for help in authenticating your product.

For more tips on busting the fake LV’s, watch the video below:


Credit: Louis Vuitton / KOKOPIX / Will Alexander / Ivan Nikolov / WENN

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