How to Tell if a Michael Kors Purse is Fake

Have you ever bought a designer purse for half its original price only to find out from your friends that it’s a knockoff? Michael Kors is an extremely popular brand on social media, with over 18 million Facebook followers. This fact alone shows that people are willing to engage with the brand and its products, making it a target for counterfeit goods.

graph showing the number of Michael Kors followers across social media platforms

While some people would knowingly buy a counterfeit designer bag, many would feel tricked if they spent a large amount of money just to buy a fake Michael Kors purse. Many shoppers are trying to save money and shop on a budget, but some are willing to splurge if they know it’s the real thing.

In this article, we’ll cover the details you need to pay close attention to before making your next Michael Kors purchase. Counterfeits will be easy to spot once you know the telltale signs of an original purse.

Familiarize yourself with the official Michael Kors logos

One of the easiest ways to tell if a Michael Kors purse is fake is by looking at the logo. Michael Kors uses two different types of logos on their products, which are usually sewn into the lining or affixed as a metal plate on the outside.

The first type of logo is an embossed MK initials logo, which should look as though it’s been stamped into the leather. If the logo looks like it’s been printed or glued on, then it’s likely a fake. The MK logo can also appear as a circle emblem that hangs from the zipper. This metal charm should have a smooth, clean finish with evenly spaced letters.

Image showing the hanging Michael Kors circle logo on the Edith satchel

(Image Source)

The second type of logo used by Michael Kors is a rectangular metal plate with “MICHAEL KORS” in all caps. The letters should be evenly spaced and aligned in the center of the rectangle. If the name is not centered, or if the letters are crooked, then the merchandise may be counterfeit.

Image showing the enlarged Michael Kors emblem on the Whitney large quilted leather shoulder bag

(Image Source)

Inspect the manufacturing tag

If you take a look at the manufacturing tag, you can quickly tell if a Michael Kors purse is a fake. Each tag should have a 12-digit code on the manufacturing tag that tells buyers the serial number, style number, color, and where the product was made. You can use this code to search for the purse online and compare it to the one you are researching. The text and letters on the tag should also be clear and easy to read.

The tag should also have a 4-digit number that tells you when and where the purse was made. For example, a “0910” would mean that the purse was made in September of 2010. There should also be two letters before this code that tell you the country of origin. The most common country codes are “CO” for Colombia and “PH” for the Philippines.

It's important to note that while most new styles of these purses have a cloth tag, many older styles will have a real leather tag. If the manufacturing tag is missing or if the information on it is illegible, then it’s likely a fake. This is due to the low-quality heat stamps that counterfeiters use.

Check the stitching

Another way you can ensure your Michael Kors purse is authentic is to check the stitching since this is often the hardest part to replicate. Michael Kors merchandise features double stitching along the seams, which should be straight, evenly spaced, and tight. You should also see double stitching around the pocket lining and four horizontal stitches under the buckle.

The stitching on a fake Michael Kors purse is often crooked, loose, or done with a different color thread. You should also look for uneven intersecting areas around the zippers, straps, and handles, as counterfeiters often overlook these areas.

If you are unsure about the stitching, you can always bring the purse to a Michael Kors store to have an employee determine if it’s authentic.

Image showing how stitching differs on a fake and real Michael Kors purse

(Image Source)

Check the zippers

To ensure your Michael Kors purse is the real deal, you should also inspect the zippers and hardware. All zippers on Michael Kors products should have the company’s name stamped on them, both inside and out. The teeth of the zipper should also be close together and evenly spaced.

The hardware on an authentic Michael Kors purse is usually made of brass with a deluxe gold or silver finish. The hardware should also be free of any scratches, chips, or cracks. Counterfeiters often use lower-quality hardware that can easily tarnish or discolor over time.

Examine the handles and straps

Taking time to examine the handles and straps of your purse can also help you spot a fake. All straps and handles on authentic purses are firmly attached and evenly spaced. The hardware used to attach the straps should also be the same color as the rest of the hardware on the purse.

You should also look at how the handles are attached to the body of the purse. On a real Michael Kors purse, the handles will be stitched directly to the body of the bag. The stitching should be strong and even, with no loose threads.

The leather quality used on the handles and straps should also be examined. Michael Kors only uses premium leather that is soft to the touch and durable. The leather should not have any imperfections, such as scratches, cracks, or discoloration.

The adjustable strap on Michael Kors crossbody bags and satchels should also be examined. These straps should have a sliding adjuster that allows you to loosen or tighten the strap easily. You should also see a Michael Kors logo stamped on the end of the strap.

Examine the metalwork

While most of the hardware on an authentic Michael Kors purse is made of brass, some accents may be made of other metals. For example, the zippers may be made of nickel, and the rivets may be made of aluminum.

The polished metal emblems and logos on Michael Kors products are also a good way to spot a fake. These emblems should be made of metal that is the same color as the hardware. They should also be firmly attached and free of any scratches or defects.

image showing how Michael Kors labels the metal work on its bags

(Image Source)

The heaviness of the metalwork can also be a good indicator of a fake. Counterfeiters often use lower-quality metals that are lighter in weight than authentic hardware. Some of the metalwork is affixed to the purse, while others, like the zipper pulls, are not.

The size and spacing of the rivets can also help you spot a fake. Michael Kors uses large rivets that are evenly spaced apart. The heads of the rivets should also be flush with the surface of the purse.

mage showing how Michael Kors labels the metal work on its bags

(Image Source)

Check the lining

Another way to tell if a Michael Kors purse is fake is to examine the lining. These purses are lined with high-quality fabric that is usually a solid color. The most common colors are black, brown, and beige.

Image showing the circle logo printed inside an authentic Michael Kors Ostrich-Embossed tote

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It's important to research the bag you want to buy, as each collection has a unique and distinct lining. For example, the Jet Set collection is usually lined with black MK logo fabric, while the Bedford collection is lined with brown crosshatch fabric.

Some specific items, like the Greenwich Crossbody, have no inner lining. This is intentional and does not indicate that your purse is a fake. You should also check the seams of the lining to make sure they are even and well-sewn. Most models of these purses have the circle logo printed on the lining and a leather tag with the Michael Kors logo.

image showing the lining design on a Greenwich bag from Michael Kors

(Image Source)

Buy from authorized retailers

One of the best ways to avoid purchasing a fake Michael Kors purse is to buy from an authorized retailer. Michael Kors has specifically chosen these retailers as designated places where you can be sure you're getting an authentic product.

Some of the most popular Michael Kors authorized retailers include Nordstrom and Saks Fifth Avenue. You can also find a list of authorized retailers on the Michael Kors website.

Purchasing directly from the Michael Kors website or retail store is also a good way to ensure you're getting an authentic product. While you may have to wait for shipping, purchasing directly from the source is always the best option.

Use coupons to maximize your savings on Michael Kors

With nearly 26,503 shipments of counterfeit goods seized by U.S. Customs and Border Protection in 2020 alone, it’s clear shoppers need to stay vigilant to ensure their goods are authentic. Remember to always buy from authorized retailers and check your purse's materials, hardware, and construction before making any large purchases.

When shopping online, be sure to try some popular promo codes at checkout to save even more. You can also check out the featured coupons on CouponFollow to maximize your savings at your favorite retailers.

about the author

Tiara Rea-Palmer
Director of Partnerships
As an expert in online savings and an avid deal enthusiast, Tiara heads up retail relations at CouponFollow, where she stays up-to-date on all the best deals, discounts, and freebies, as well as negotiates exclusive coupons and offers for CouponFollow users. In her free time, you can find Tiara writing, DIY crafting on a budget, and traveling with free rewards card miles.