There are always going to be dishonest people in the world, but thankfully I was protected by eBay's Money Back Guarantee. Anyone who knows me knows that I've been obsessed with Celine's simple and sophisticated designs.
I purchased a Celine handbag that was advertised as authentic on eBay. The seller had 59 reviews at 100%. When I received it, my gut told me that the purse wasn't right. The seller continued to try to convince me it was authentic. Holt Renfrew had the exact bag I wanted, but there was a waiting list for it. Luckily for me, the next person on the list didn't respond, so they bumped me up on the list, and I was able to purchase it. I WAS RIGHT - definitely fake.
These are 10 ways to tell if your Celine Nano is an authentic piece or garbage...
1. The Logo (Heat Stamping)
The front logo reads CÉLINE and PARIS (in a smaller font) right under it. In this case, the fake is exactly that, but notice that the font is thinner than the real one. On the black Celine nano in drummed leather, the logo is ALWAYS silver with silver hardware. The black Celine nano in smooth leather ALWAYS has a gold logo with gold hardware.
Note: Not all Celine purses have the logo heat stamped. My Celine phantom in smooth calfskin has the logo embossed, and my Celine phantom in python leather doesn't even have a logo on the front!
On the inside, the tag should be attached to the single flat pocket. The tag on the authentic appears to be more rectangular with straight edges, and rounded edges on the A+++.
Another thing I noticed just looking at the photo above was that the counterfeiters lined the pocket with double stitching, instead of just one like the authentic.
2. The Serial Number
Each Celine bag has a leather tab with the serial number on it. Unfortunately, with Celine, the serial numbers aren't unique and can be repeated. The serial number is written in capital letters with hyphens in between following this format: one letter, two letters, followed by a four digit number. The counterfeiters love using the prefix "S-GA" on their imitations. The leather tab should never be curved and the edges should be snipped at a perfect 90-degree angle.
When comparing the two, the replica has some sort of serial number, but it appears faint because it wasn't embossed properly. On the real one, the serial number is two lines long. Another thing you may not be able to notice just by looking at the photo is that the leather tab on the fake is paper thin and it is double the thickness on the real one.
Note: I'm not sure if other Celine bags (such as the belt bag, box bag, etc.) have serial number tags. I only have experience with the luggage series of bags (phantom, nano, micro, etc.).
3. The Dimensions
The dimensions of Céline nano are 8" x 8" x 4" (H x W x D). I'm not sure if you can tell in this photo, but the fake one is a bit shorter and fatter, while the real one is more of a square shape (8" x 8").
4. The Handles
The handles are about the same height on both bags, but on the imitation, the handles are thicker than the authentic one.
5. The Leather Tabs
The leather tabs attaching the handles to the bag are different when comparing the real vs. fake. The leather tabs on the fake one are wider than on the real one. Also, the leather tabs cover more of the handles on the authentic version.
6. The Interior Lining & Leather
I think this one is quite obvious. The fake has some additional leather lining on the side of the bag, while the real one doesn't.
In the pebbled version, the interior is a micro-suede. The smooth leather styles will have a matching smooth leather interior. The fake (on the left) uses the same micro-suede as the real one.
7. The Cross-Body Strap
Although the real and fake strap are identical, I think most people would miss what I've highlighted in the picture. On the real one, the hardware where I've circled is more rounded than the fake one.
Celine uses an antique-like finish on their hardware. The authentic one on the right looks more rusty. A dead giveaway for a fake is super shiny hardware.
8. The sales tag
The fake writes: 168243LUG.38NO, Nano Luggage Black
The real writes: 168243DRU.38NO, Nano remov shoulder strap black
9. The Dust Bag
The first thing I noticed was that the dust bag that came with the fake felt very cheap. The real one has a soft cotton lining.
10. The Bottom
The nano tote is the only style that doesn't have four protective studs. The fake is less structured and wider. The stitching on the real one is more hidden
Overall, in my experience, Céline is definitely one of the harder brands to distinguish between the real deal and the fake. You really have to study it and/or own a few to be able to tell the difference. If you're unsure about an item, forward me the link and I'd be happy to give you my thoughts!