COVID-19 Policy Statement

Knowledge Center

Counterfeit Cosmetics – A Solvable Problem.

Multiple cosmetic products on black background. High resolution image for cosmetics and fashion industry.

Just recently, in downtown Los Angeles, officers seized over $300,000 in counterfeit makeup coming in from China that looked nearly identical to the name brands. At best, these counterfeit cosmetics contain benign, lesser-quality ingredients than the name-brand items. At worst, they have been tested to contain dangerous chemicals and harmful bacteria detrimental to the health and safety of the consumer. Companies have a responsibility to protect their loyal customers from counterfeiters, protect their brand’s reputation, and protect themselves from financial losses.

This is just one of the latest examples of an industry plagued by fake products and lost sales to illicit trade. Cosmetics are an interesting problem, because many of the products have a relatively small size compared to their value. The real estate on which to carry serialization or overt authentication features – such as holograms – is very limited, and the product image and look are extremely important to marketing and brand differentiation. While the outsourcing of production to low-cost places like China has created economic benefits, they are to some degree offset by that same manufacturing capability being used to create large amounts of counterfeit goods of seemingly high quality.

But even the smallest of cosmetic products, like nail polish and lipstick, require some information to be carried for the consumer. There are several solutions through printing technologies to help with the easy identification of counterfeit and authentic product. These approaches, from overt color-shifting ink to covert markers read by proprietary devices, all offer the stakeholders in the supply chain an opportunity to authenticate goods easily and cost effectively. When supported by stakeholder education and product surveillance, these features are effective deterrents to counterfeiters who fear their illicit product may be identified and not be accepted into the supply chain.

The different types of features all serve a different purpose, from enabling consumers to quickly identify a branded product as genuine, to covert markings that enable a manufacturer to identify the source of diversion or other illicit activity. When combined with the careful design and production quality controls used in authentic product manufacturing, these features raise the bar of complexity for counterfeiters and make the product a less attractive target.

Solutions exist today to solve counterfeiting in the beauty and skincare market. It is just a matter of matching the cost of the solution with the value of the product. In our 25 years of protecting brands, we most often find that a multi-layered authentication solution works best. In the case of a $5 tube of lipstick, a simple overt solution for less than a cent per unit may be appropriate. In the case of a designer skin care product, a more robust solution is appropriate, which can be designed to enhance the brand image as well as brand protection. What is important is that they both be incorporated as a part of an overall brand protection program that includes monitoring and sampling retailers.

Let us help you protect what matters most – customers, brand and revenue. 

COVID-19 Policy Statement


At Authentix, our mission to safeguard the integrity of global commerce is our priority as we continue to focus on customer needs with the challenges presented by the COVID-19 health emergency. Our corporate leadership team is monitoring the situation closely and its potential impact on supply chain continuity.

Our first and foremost commitment is to the health and safety of all Authentix employees. As we have said when faced with other similar infectious disease situations, we will never force Authentix employees to travel to geographic areas where they are uncomfortable or that present an increased risk of exposure to infectious disease.

Effective through April 30, 2020, we have closed the Addison Texas Facility to all personnel who do not require facility equipment to conduct their job, allowing for only those functions such as production/shipping/testing as needed to continue to serve our customers. We have banned all visitors to the Addison Texas Facility as well. We encourage all Authentix sites to enact a similar ban for employee safety and to restrict visitors, but realize this restriction is subject to local needs. We have further banned all air/train travel for all employees for Authentix business purposes. We ask that all customers, vendors or suppliers support these efforts and for those who present themselves at Authentix locations to respect and adhere to our policies and procedures that may limit access on this temporary basis.

We will continue to communicate regularly with our suppliers and updating contingency plans to ensure against any adverse impact or disruption to our customers, acknowledging that we are however subject to continued government restrictions and limited availability of transportation that may continue during this time. We encourage you to reach out to your Authentix point of contact with any questions or concerns.


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