Gucci or Guccy: How to Know if Your Bag is Real or Fake 

Brand A-ZFashionAugust 04, 2023

At Notorious Mag, we’ve noticed the vintage and secondhand market isn’t just booming—it’s positively thriving! Consumers are now all about that ‘pre-loved’ life, firmly believing it’s the ultimate sustainable flex. And let’s get real: with the economy doing a rollercoaster ride and inflation playing peek-a-boo, platforms like Vestiaire Collective and The Real Real are becoming everyone’s go-to passport to luxury without breaking the bank. But here’s the tea: you gotta be on the lookout for those sneaky counterfeits.

These days, counterfeiters aren’t just good; they’re artisanal-level crafty. Sometimes, even the sharpest fashionistas get duped, thinking they’ve snagged a legit item. And guess what? Gucci seems to be topping the charts as a counterfeiter’s fave. So, before you ask, “Is it Gucci or Guccy?”, dive into our article where we spill all the deets on distinguishing the real from the fake Gucci bag.

Red Gucci bag, real of fake?

So if you’re thinking of buying a Gucci bag from a second-hand shop or any unauthorized reseller be careful not to buy a pig in a poke. Whether it’s the iconic GG Marmont, Gucci Dionysus, the Sylvie or Soho Disco Bag, there are a few things you should examine to know if it’s a fake Gucci bag or a real. 

1 – Check the Leather

Details of a Gucci bag with authenticity cards.

Like most high-luxury accessories, the real Gucci bag is made in Italy with premium materials, like authentic good leather. On the other hand, fake totes come in cheap synthetic leather. So you can tell the difference because natural leather has imperfections, whereas machine-made synthetic materials feel rubbery and look too perfect. Additionally, real leather has that unique, authentic signature smell. Yes, smell the leather, because a fake Gucci bag will smell like plastic!

If you choose a monogram bag on canvas, look closely at the double G pattern, which is symmetric and has constant spacing. However, in fake Gucci bags, you can usually spot irregular spacing and different-sized Gs. 

2 – Check the logo’s quality

Checking the bag's exterior logo.

Not all Gucci bags have the same logo on their exterior, and they can come printed directly on the leather or in gold-plated metal. Whether the interlocking Gs emblem or the brand’s name, it’s displayed on the front of the bag, flap or closure, and it’s always exact. The Gs, for example, overlap each other; they are thicker in the middle and end up in a fine point at the top.

3 – Find the serial number

Close view of the serial number in a bag.

All authentic Gucci bags come with a serial number differentiating them from fake ones. You will find it on the back of the leather tag with the Gucci logo and the words: “Made in Italy” stitched in the interior of your handbag. This serial number consists of a heat stamp with two rows of 5 to 6 digits each; you should never see a letter, only numbers. And it’s not uncommon to find more than one tote with the same serial number. So if this happens, don’t think your Gucci bag is fake. In addition, the newer models also have inside a black fabric loop with a 10-digit QR code printed in white.

4 – Dust bag and Authenticity cards

Gucci bag, dust bag, and authenticity cards.

Although even fake Gucci bags can come in dust bags or boxes like real ones, you can spot the difference by examining them closely. The Italian luxury brand uses high-quality packaging. The dust bags that protect the authentic handbags are either in light honeycomb, brown, black or white, with the brand’s logo or Gucci printed on them. Additionally, your tote will come with authenticity cards confirming it is real. Pay attention to the logo’s symmetry, the spacing and the centring of the text; the word Gucci comes on the centre of the card in capital letters. Finally, if your bag comes in plastic wrapping, you can be sure you were duped.

5 – High-quality hardware

Detail of a bag's hardware.

Even the best fake bags don’t get it right when it comes to Gucci’s hardware, the real ones being heavy and solid. All metal pieces are visibly top quality, including locks, zippers, chains, or embellishments. For example, the metal does not lose its gold or silver plating so easily. Additionally, they display the Gucci engraved with a high-quality finish and are all perfectly placed. 

6 – The impeccable stitching

Detail of a bag's stitching.

Another sign that the handbag is authentic is its impeccable stitching in the same colour as the bag. The stitches should be even and without loose or broken threads. This is especially easy to spot in GG Marmont and Soho models. In short, if you notice irregular stitching in the Gucci bag, you can be sure that it is fake.

Last But Not Least: A Interesting Story on How Real and Fake Gucci Walked Hand-in-Hand

Interestingly, with so many counterfeiters selling fake designer bags and garments, luxury streetwear is turning knock-offs into trendy, coveted pieces. For instance, in the ’80s, a couturier known as Dapper Dan sold in his Harlem boutique garments he would create using fake luxury patterns and logos. Among his clients were famous rappers and athletes like Mike Tyson. He eventually closed his shop despite his success because of multiple lawsuits from luxury brands like Gucci. But in 2016, Alessandro Michele, former Gucci creative director, paid him homage by creating a fake Dapper Dan jacket. In other words, Gucci knocked off his knock-off. And in a twist of irony, the Italian heritage house elevated the counterfeiter to real luxury fashion. The label then partnered with Dapper Dan in a capsule collection and advertisements. Similarly, street artist Trevor “Trouble” Andrew’s graffitis with his interpretation of the iconic Gucci logo ended up in the brand’s Fall/Winter 2016 collection. 

All images by Notorious Mag.