The other day my hair stylist shared a horror story PSA on social media.
The post detailed another stylist’s “snafu” at her salon that entailed a client’s bangs “melting off” (yikes). While the stylist was a professional and did a thorough consultation before a treatment on her client’s hair, including an overview of the client’s at-home products, she neglected to ask where the products were purchased. After a little sleuthing, it was discovered they were purchased on Amazon and–when compared to the real deal product purchased by the stylist at an authorized beauty seller–a complete counterfeit.
This phenomenon, called product diversion, has caused headaches across the beauty industry for years. And it’s not just hair products!
What is product diversion?
Product diversion is when unauthorized businesses sell professional beauty products. Often times these products are expired, depleting their effectiveness or causing unusual reactions. Other times the product has been altered in some way–diluted, mixed with something else, or completely replaced with fake product. While quality is most often affected, some diverted products can include dangerous ingredients (like gasoline) or be exposed to harmful bacteria.
What products can be diverted?
Basically anything and everything! While hair products are often at the top of the list, diversion touches all corners of the beauty industry. Your favorite cleanser, lipstick, serum, eye shadow palette, and more from professional brands can all fall victim to diversion.
How do I know if my product is diverted?
It’s often hard to tell a diverted product from the real deal until you sit them side by side. Even then, some products have the same packaging, especially if expired.
The biggest indicator a product is diverted is who is selling it. If a product is marked that it’s only guaranteed in a professional salon or spa, but you find it on the shelves of Wal-Mart, Marshall’s, or another big box store, it’s diverted. Amazon is perhaps the most rampant marketplace for diverted products. Many brands have authorized stores to still make shopping convenient. Be sure to pay attention to who the seller is before you hit “Buy.”
Packaging is also a big indicator. If it seems off in some way–dirty, dented, the barcode has been tampered with or covered, has unusual language–that’s a red flag.
How do I make sure my products are safe?
Always purchase directly from the brand itself or from your skincare and hair care professional. It doesn’t just support a local business; it keeps you safe!
While it’s tempting to hunt for a deal on Amazon, you’re only guaranteed quality when sold through a licensed professional. Plus, most diverted product is sold at the same prices or within a few dollars of the actual retail price. When the quality is jeopardized, it’s no real savings.
At Lookworthy, all of our products come directly from our favorite brands. In addition, we try everything ourselves before carrying a product. If we wouldn’t feel safe putting it on our skin, we wouldn’t sell it!
Have questions or concerns about any products on the Lookworthy shelves? You can always stop by, email, or call us at 765-644-6028.