Published: 16 May 2023  (Updated: 16 May 2023)

Social Media Influencers and Counterfeit Cosmetics

Following this news item reported by CTPA in March 2023 regarding counterfeit beauty, there have been further reports of the prevalence of counterfeiting in the cosmetics industry, with specific issues surrounding social media and influencers.

These reports follow investigations carried out by the UK Government and highlight how social media platforms have become a destination for online retail, with features such as in-app shopping and influencer promotion.  However, whilst some of these platforms may have policies to stop the sale of illegal products, medicines and banned ingredients, there is still evidence of cases where these restrictions have been bypassed.  Therefore, consumers have unintentionally purchased products that are unlicensed or that have not undergone the relevant safety considerations.

In November 2021, the Intellectual Property Office (IPO) commissioned researchers at the University of Portsmouth to carry out pilot research, looking into the impact of social media influencers promoting counterfeit products. 

Read more information and access the report here.

Further information is available on CTPA’s consumer site, in the counterfeiting section.

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