5 Things To Check After Buying Perfume Online in Singapore

As we all know, buying goods online (in general) is risky. You can’t see, touch or smell the actual product before it is packed into a box and shipped in your direction. In fact, the only thing consumers CAN do before they actually purchase the product is to ask the seller if their product is authentic — a rather common sight on Qoo10. Truth be told, this is a very redundant question. Obviously, as the seller’s main concern is to sell their products, it is highly unlikely that they would admit that their product is fake, even if it actually is fake. Furthermore, you don’t actually know how credible the seller is — especially since websites such as Qoo10 do not require the seller to be a registered company.

While extremely cheap prices (how does the seller even make a profit with prices that low?!), as well as bad reviews and low sales are hints of a potentially fake product, it often falls to the consumer to check the authenticity of the product after it has landed in their hands. However, the problem is that online sellers are not very likely to go out of their way to teach their customers how to check the authenticity of their product. Who knows, they might even come up with fake instructions, just for you!

Which brings us to the topic at hand.

As perfumes are the largest category of beauty products that Xiaomei deals with, it comes as no surprise that we receive the most number of enquiries on the authenticity of our perfumes — which then led to the creation of this blog post! So what on earth should you check for after buying perfume online in Singapore?

#1 Thing To Check After Buying Perfume Online in Singapore — Packaging

Before you chuck that bulky perfume packaging into nearest rubbish bin, you might want to check it for any misspelt words, weird spaces among the words under ingredients list, details of the fonts, and the quality of the logo on the box. Although not a completely sure-fire method of discerning a product’s authenticity, it is a good place to start your investigation.

5 Things To Check After Buying Perfume Online in Singapore - Perfume Ingredients
5 Things To Check After Buying Perfume Online in Singapore - Brand logos
Images by Grace Hummel

You should know that testers have a different packaging. Also, a tester is NOT a rejected product. Any seller selling it as such is very likely to be selling fakes — so it is highly recommended that you do not buy them. Testers are original and authentic fragrances from the same manufactures, only without the fancy caps and specially packaged boxes. The quality and essence of the fragrances are still the same — making it ideal for those of us who would just throw away those boxes anyway. The product INSIDE is still the real thing — meaning you can scrutinise the product for any spelling errors, bad font details, bad logo, etc. And no, the seller CANNOT explain any faults away with the word ‘tester’.

5 Things To Check After Buying Perfume Online in Singapore - Burberry Brit Tester

You can also find various detailed comparisons between the real and fake versions of perfumes in the links below:

#2 Thing To Check After Buying Perfume Online in Singapore — Scent

Although this is one of THE most obvious method of discerning a fake product from a real product, it may also be the most troublesome — especially if it is a blind buy on your end. This can be easily remedied, however, if you simply make the effort to head down to the local departmental store to get a whiff of the perfume. After spraying the sample perfume located in the shop on one hand, rush to the nearest toilet like a mad person and spray your online-bought perfume on the other hand. Compare the two scents for any disparity throughout the day. Why?

As perfume connoisseurs would know, a perfume has three notes — the top, heart, and base note. Top notes are perceived immediately, followed by heart notes which emerge around two minutes to an hour into the application of the perfume. Finally, base notes are made available during the dry-down. Therefore, a really good fake would likely mimic the top notes really well, but may not have perfected the mimicry of the heart and base notes.

Try to avoid engaging your friend in this quest as perfumes may have a slightly different smell depending on one’s body chemistry — you might want to see our blog post on this topic.

It should be noted, however, that some perfumes get reformulated over the years — so the Chloe Eau De Toilette that you may have liked a few years ago may not be the same Chloe Eau De Toilette on the market right now, for instance. To check if this is the case, it is recommended that you visit either the official website of the perfume, or websites such as Fragrantica.

5 Things To Check After Buying Perfume Online in Singapore - Chloe EDT 2008 & 2015
Left: Chloe EDT (2008); Right: Chloe EDT (2015); Source: Fragrantica.com

#3 Thing To Check After Buying Perfume Online in Singapore — Manufacturing/Expiry Date

5 Things To Check After Buying Perfume Online in Singapore - Expiry Dates

Depending on the brand of perfume you have bought, you may or may not see this little sticker. As you can likely infer from the circled portion, it announces the expiry date of your perfume. While this alone does not prove the authenticity of your online-bought perfume, it is still something you should definitely check for — for your own piece of mind if nothing else. After all, you don’t want to use your perfume past its expiry date do you?

Eh, what’s wrong with using an expired perfume? Well, the smell changes for one, and for another, it might make your skin itch in really bad cases. Read our other blog post for more information — “Does Perfume Expire? Here are some things to know”.

#4 Thing To Check After Buying Perfume Online in Singapore — Batch Code

Eagle-eyed readers would have noticed that the manufacturing/expiry date alone (as written above) does not prove the authenticity of your online-bought perfume. The second step is to look for the batch code of the product. This is usually located either at the top or the bottom of the box packaging — yet another reason why you shouldn’t just fling the box into the nearest bin immediately. This step is especially beneficial for those who bought perfumes that do not come with a stated manufacturing or expiry date. If nothing, you will actually have some idea as to when to throw your perfume away.

5 Things To Check After Buying Perfume Online in Singapore - Batch Code

You’ve found the batch code? Alright! The end.

Just kidding! The presence of the batch code alone does not actually help you at all. What’s important is to input the batch codes into websites such as Checkcosmetic and Checkfresh. If you did it correctly, you should be able to find out the date of manufacture. Double check that the manufacturing or expiry dates are the same.

FYI: An unopened perfume can last up to 5 years, while an opened perfume can last between 1 to 2 years on average. This can also be found on our aforementioned blog post.

5 Things To Check After Buying Perfume Online in Singapore - check manufactured date

Note: The batch codes of newer perfumes rarely work on websites which allow you to check the date of manufacture. It is likely that they update their database every half-year or every year. Therefore, you might want to avoid crying wolf — especially if point 3 has been made available to you. In these cases, check the points 1 to 3 and 5!

If you’re looking for more resources, Checkfresh gives a rather informative guide on how to find the batch number of your perfume.

#5 Thing To Check After Buying Perfume Online in Singapore — Similar Batch Code Number on Packaging & Item

5 Things To Check After Buying Perfume Online in Singapore - similar batch code number

The final thing to check after you receive your perfume is that the batch code number on the packaging and on your product itself, is identical. It is very fishy if the two batch codes differ — the seller might have given you the wrong product (accidentally…?). In those cases, you should definitely contact the seller and ask for an explanation.

Ending Note

Ladies and gentlemen, thank you for your kind attention. You have now made it to the end of the article!

If you haven’t guessed, the images from point 3 to 5 are products from Xiaomei. Do you have some tips and tricks you would like to share? Drop us a comment in the box below or send us a message. Feel free to share our articles on social media — after all, the whole idea of writing articles is so that more people can benefit from these bits of knowledge!


Originally published at Xiaomei.