The devil might wear Prada… but is it real? Despite how popular counterfeiting has become, it doesn’t take a professional to determine what’s real and what’s fake when it comes to purses. Whether you’re buying a used Prada tote or simply want to know if your favorite blogger’s bag is genuine, look at the logo, hardware, fabric, and other accessories.
EditInspecting the Logo
Look for the signature curve in the “R” in the Prada logo. This is the most defining characteristic of the Prada logo and the biggest giveaway that a bag is fake.The right leg ot the “R” curves slightly upwards. If the leg is straight like a regular “R,” you have a counterfeit bag.
Find anywhere the word Prada is printed or engraved on the bag to make sure the curved “R” is present in each spot. This includes extras like the dustbag if there is one or the authenticity card.
Examine the triangle logo for the correct font, spacing, and color. The inverted triangle logo is easily recognizable. Ensure that the letters are evenly spaced on the plaque and that the font matches the font on all other uses of Prada on the rest of the bag. The background color of the plaque will match the color of the bag if it’s genuine.
The plaque should be fastened securely to the front of the bag and not falling off or skewed at all.
The logo on a real bag will be easily readable, no matter how small the font is.
While you’re checking the font around the bag, check that all words are spelled properly.
Make sure the logo plaque on the inside matches the interior fabric. For example, if the bag is cream, the plaque will be either the exact same shade of cream or slightly darker. The logo will be ceramic on leather bags and may be leather on non-leather bags. A plastic or fabric tag is a sign of a counterfeit bag.
The interior logo plaque should also be rectangular, which is different than the exterior triangle plaque.
A real Prada bag will have a plaque with 4 rounded corners that’s securely attached to the bag.
If there is no interior logo plaque at all, it’s not a real Prada bag.
Check that the interior logo plaque says “Prada Milano Made in Italy”. The phrase will be split between 3 lines on the plaque. “Prada” is on the first line, followed by “Milano” on the second line, and then “Made in Italy” on the third line.
If it says “Milan” instead of “Milano” for example, it’s a fake.
Newer styles of genuine bags might say “Prada” on the first line and “Made in Italy” on the second line instead.
EditChecking the Hardware
Compare all of the hardware to make sure it’s either all gold or all silver. Prada only uses high-quality gold and silver for its hardware. They will never mix colors on a bag so check that all of the hardware including zippers, clasps, and feet are all one color. Different colors or finishes mean the bag is fake.
Open and close the zipper to see if it runs smoothly. On a real Prada bag, the zipper should work easily. There won’t be any snags, catches, or broken zipper pieces.
An exception is if you’re buying a used bag where the zipper might have been damaged by the owner. Ask if this is the case.
Read the zipper brand to see if it’s Lampo, Ykk, Riri, Opti, or Ipi. These are the only brands that Prada uses for its bags. Find the brand embossed on the back of the zipper.
See if all of the hardware says “Prada.” On Prada bags, every piece of hardware has the brand name engraved on it. This includes the zippers, buckles, metal feet at the bottom, locks, and any other decorative pieces.
If any of the hardware is blank, it’s not a real bag.
On the zipper of a real bag, the Prada engraving will be on the front side while the zipper brand will be on the back.
Not all real Prada bags have metal feet on the bottom of the purse or special accents like locks. Check the Prada catalog online to see if your model is supposed to.
EditExamining the Material
Run your hand over a leather bag to see if it’s soft to the touch. Made from real calf leather, Prada leather bags should be supple and smooth. If the leather is stiff or unbending, it’s likely a fake.
Check that the interior fabric is high quality and has the Prada pattern. The interior will either be embossed jacquard nylon fabric or nappa leather. The fabric will have a pattern that alternates a line printed with Prada and a line of rope motif.
Every other line with the Prada logo will be printed upside down.
Look for clean stitching along the seams. Real Prada bags should not have stitching that is crooked, uneven, or sloppy. The stitches will be small and sturdy. If they’re frayed in any areas, that’s a sure sign the bag is a fake.
On a leather bag, the stitches should match the color of the leather.
Designer bags almost never have seams that are glued.
EditAnalyzing Additional Pieces
Find a small white tag inside the bag with a number printed on it. Every real Prada bag will have this tiny square tag somewhere in the interior. The number is the purse factory number.
Check for a white dustbag with the Prada logo printed in black on it. A dustbag is a cloth covering similar to a pillow sham that protects a purse from dirt, sun exposure, and moisture. The font that’s on the dustbag will match the font on the Prada bag itself (the logo or the interior fabric font) if it’s a real bag. It will also have a drawstring.
There should be a label stitched in the dustbag that says “Prada” and “100% Cotton Made in Italy”.
Not all Prada bags come with a dustbag. If there isn’t one, ask the seller.
Older purses may have a navy dustbag with Prada printed in gold.
Examine the authenticity card for the right information and good quality. Each Prada bag comes with a sealed authenticity card that contains the serial number and purse style information. Signs of a forged authenticity card include uneven spacing between the letters and numbers, slanted lines, or low-quality printing.
The authenticity card should come in a black envelope embossed with the Prada logo. A printed logo signals it’s a fake.
Contact Prada via their website if you want to check that a serial number is valid. Fill out the contact form, making the subject line something like, “Please verify the serial number of my Prada bag.” Include the serial number in the body of the email form.
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EditSources and Citations
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