The effects of counterfeiting in the cosmetics and personal care industry

In the last few years, counterfeit cosmetics and personal care products have increased drastically. From fake lipsticks to fake shampoos, duplicate face creams to duplicate facial masks – the list seems endless. Nowadays, roadside shops, markets, and even retail shops are flooded with counterfeit versions of cosmetics.

For example, in the city of Delhi, some of the major counterfeit hubs of fake cosmetics are Janpath, Central Market in Lajpat Nagar, Sadar, Palika market, etc. You can easily find here cheap copies of famous international cosmetic brands at very low prices. Similarly, there are many other spots in other cities where you can easily find counterfeit cosmetics.

Current facts and figures related to counterfeit cosmetics

The counterfeit cosmetics industry is growing at fast pace and here are some shocking facts which prove the same:

  • In 2016, fake perfumes and cosmetics had a share of 5% of the overall global seizures. Source- OECD.
  • Counterfeit cosmetics contain harmful chemicals like lead and mercury. Source- Web
  • In February 2018, police in the US found US$700,000 worth of knock-off Kylie Cosmetics products in 21 locations throughout Los Angeles. Source:
  • Social media now contributes to more than 50% of black-market cosmetics sales. Source:

Negative impact on the manufacturers and consumers

Counterfeit cosmetics lead to a monetary loss of the manufacturers. Counterfeiting takes away a major chunk of profits from the companies. Moreover, counterfeiting leads to a tarnished brand image which takes years to build up.

Many big cosmetic brands have taken strict anti-counterfeiting measures to fight fakes. This comes in the form of added costs and puts a financial burden on the company which is already suffering from fake products.

Every day, we come across numerous reports and news from different corners of the world on the harmful effects of counterfeit cosmetics.  Since fake cosmetics contain toxic chemicals, they lead to different types of skin allergies, infections, etc.

Anti-counterfeiting solutions from Holostik

Holostik provides customized anti-counterfeiting, smart packaging, and supply chain solutions to the cosmetic and personal care industry. Our products not just help in preventing the sale of counterfeits but also help in monitoring the company’s supply chains.

Our anti-counterfeiting solutions are incorporated with high-security features like holography, tamper-evident and digital authentication technologies which makes it impossible for counterfeiters to breach our security standards.

To know about our customized anti-counterfeiting product line call us on +91–785-785-7000 or mail us at

What are the harmful effects of counterfeit cosmetics?

It is generally seen that during the festive season consumers throng at cosmetic shops and outlets attracted by huge discounts and lucrative offers. However, many times the prices are too good to be true and consumers are at the risk of buying counterfeit, sub-standard and harmful cosmetic products.

Counterfeit cosmetics not just lead to monetary loss of manufacturers and but also affect the health of consumers. Forgers generally use harmful and poor-quality raw materials for manufacturing counterfeit cosmetics. They do not pay heed to consumer’s safety and blatantly ignore the safety laws and industry guidelines.

Fake cosmetic products are manufactured in dirty, unhygienic illegal facilities. Many times, such products are made in the backyard of homes, garages, and godowns. From this, you can clearly understand the level of danger of fake cosmetics that you are going to directly apply to your skin. In fake cosmetics, the danger hides inside the product which is made to look visually similar to the original product and befool the consumer.

Before we discuss the list of toxic ingredients used in the manufacturing of knock-off cosmetics, let’s ponder on some facts related to counterfeit cosmetics.

  • There are about 35% of fake cosmetics available on e-commerce in India. (Source: LocalSurvey)
  • Social media now contributes to more than 50% of black-market cosmetics sales. (Source:
  • In 2015, U.S. Customs and Border Protection seized more than 2,000 shipments of counterfeit cosmetics, worth an estimated $1.4 billion. (Source: CBS News)

From the above-shared facts, you can have a clear understanding of the growing problem of counterfeit cosmetic products. As stated earlier, fake cosmetics not only bring down the sales of manufacturers but also pose a risk to the health of the consumer. Fake cosmetics can usually contain chemicals like lead, arsenic, copper, mercury, beryllium, cadmium, aluminium, cyanide and even human faeces & bacteria.

Holostik provides customized anti-counterfeiting solutions for manufacturers from the cosmetic industry so that they may secure their products against counterfeiting or tampering. To get the best customized anti-counterfeiting solution for your products to call us on +91–785-785-7000 or mail us at