Good news for trainer fans. You may have seen the news recently that 14,806 pairs of fake Nike and Jordan trainers were seized by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection Agency. All of them combined would have totalled up to a worth of more than $2.2 million USD at retail price, that is around £1.7 million GBP, if they had been genuine. Discovered at one of the major seaports in L.A., the counterfeits arrived in two containers from China. The shippers declared the boxes as “napkins” in an attempt to avoid detection, nonetheless it caught the attention of the customs officers. The last thing that the officers would find was napkins, instead they found thousands of special edition Nike and Jordan trainers. The shipment of footwear eventually was identified as illegal counterfeits because of their loosely stitched “swoosh” symbols. The knock-offs copied the designs of the likes of OFF-WHITE x Air Jordan 1, Air Jordan 12, Air Jordan 11 and Nike Air Max 97, all incredibly sought-after models worldwide. Some of their resale prices could go up to $2,000. Kudos to the eagle-eyed authorities, thousands of frauds are prevented and millions of dollars are saved from scams. Our fake Nike trainers guide sets out to help everyone from the novice sneaker buyer to the die hard sneaker collector.
However one successful case of law enforcement is by no means a complete cessation of the fake trainers market. Fraudulent sellers are reluctant to quit as the business has massive potential. “Counterfeit brand-name shoes is a multi-million dollar criminal industry,” said LaFonda Sutton-Burke, CBP port director of the Los Angeles/Long Beach Seaport. “The trafficking of these items is extremely lucrative and becomes more profitable in markets involving successful and popular products.”
So as a buyer you need to shop smart, even more so when you are shopping online. Here are some useful tips on how you could avoid buying fake Nikes from any online sellers. Our fake Nike trainers guide could also be applicable to other sportswear brands.
Research The Seller
This sounds simple enough but sometimes buyers don’t do enough research before they make the purchase with an online seller. The best outlet to buy from is Nike, but there are also authorised third party vendors or retailers, like Offspring, END or Sneakersnstuff etc. Sneaker resale sites like StockX, Klekt and Laced also guarantee authenticity on all orders.
Before making a purchase from a third party vendor, more research is needed. Just because this person has multiple models available or is always active on buying and selling doesn’t make them legit. Look into their profile carefully and watch out for any red flags. Don’t hesitate to shoot any questions regarding authenticity to the buyer if you’re in doubt.
Read Reviews From Previous Buyers
Buying from a first time seller is not recommended as without past customers’ experience, it is more difficult to assess whether they are trustworthy. Most sellers would have a decent amount of reviews. Negative comments are definitely something to beware of, but polarised reviews are also a big red flag. It could mean that the quality of products could vary or the sellers could sometimes be unreliable. One positive review in 50 negative ones could be an indicator that it is a fake review as well.
Don’t Be Tempted By Discounts
Again this is very simple and obvious yet every now and again some buyers still fall for the “discount’ trap. Let’s face it, chances are everyone’s I-love-it-but-I-can’t-afford-it OFF-WHITE x Nike Air VaporMax trainers will never be “on sale”, so ignore those ones that claim they could do it for cheaper. They are knock-offs or… I don’t know what else.
Respect The “Swoosh”
Familiarise with how the products look and compare it with the actual product sent by the seller. This is because in order to keep the cost low, some counterfeits have a poor finish. Fraudulent manufacturers might use a cheaper material to imitate the original as well, such as replacing the premium Nike rubber sole with cheap plastic. It is usually noticeable.
All avid sneaker heads out there will remember the fake Nike Air Max 1/97 Sean Wotherspoon trainer that flooded the likes of Ebay last year. Although as far as some fake Nike trainers go, this one wasn’t too bad but it had the usual noticeable fake detailing, like frayed corduroy on the uppers and the wrong dimensions for the different colours of corduroy that wrapped around the shoe. There was also notable differences to the size of the ankle support, the tongue badges (the fake had waves on each tongue) and the stitching running down the heel tab.
Check The SKU (If the shoebox comes with one)
Request the seller to send your kick in its original shoe box. It doesn’t really weigh that much and it is definitely a positive sign if the seller would agree to send the shoes in their original box packaging. Also on the Nike shoe box there will be a unique SKU style code. Compare that code with the SKU label on the shoes. If they match then chances are the shoes are real, if not, well, find out how you could get a refund ASAP.
Use A Reputable Resale Site
Third party platforms like Ebay are great if you know exactly what you are looking for are, however they do not guarantee authenticity. Some reputable resale sites include StockX, Klekt, Goat & Laced.
Use Common Sense
If something seems too good to be true it generally is. This ideology applies exactly the same to new sneaker purchases. All in all even though the industry of counterfeits is still thriving, possessing the skills to avoid being scammed will surely help. Always beware of dodgy fraudulent sellers and only buy from legit sources. We hope our fake Nike trainers guide will help you with your purchase!