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The Most Popular Pre-Owned Louis Vuitton Questions Answered

October 20, 2018

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Buying a pre-owned Louis Vuitton online is the sport of the savviest shopper.  Instead of the ease of walking into a store and being able to buy with 100% certainty, getting a pre-owned Louis Vuitton from an online auction requires much research and a bit of risky.  Each month I field hundred if not thousands of questions from Louis Vuitton enthusiasts such as yourself. On the hunt to either try and determine their current Louis Vuitton bag authenticity or to seek out a great deal on a previously owned Louis Vuitton, these savvy shoppers spend countless hours on the internet learning everything they can to ensure that the bag they are eying isn’t a dreaded knock-off.  In an effort to save everyone some time I have compiled a list of the top questions we field about Louis Vuitton bags along with our answers.

If you are in the process of determining if your Louis Vuitton is real or about to try and purchase one from an online retailer then definitely don’t miss this important Q&A roundup.

 

The Most Popular Pre-Owned Louis Vuitton Questions Answered

 

 

Where is the date code on a Louis Vuitton bag?

The date code will not be in the exact same place for all bags. Typically you find it along a seam or in a somewhat concealed spot.  For example, on a Neverfull you will find the date code behind the interior pocket.

 

Is the font the same on the date code for all Louis Vuitton bags.

No. The font and embossing on a Louis Vuitton date code will vary by style and even production cycle. This is a common trick for a fake Louis Vuitton, they will have a “real” date code sequence but the font and embossing do not align with how it was produced for that country and time of origin.

 

Can you tell if this Louis Vuitton date code is authentic?

Not really. Fake Louis Vuitton bags have ready date codes all the time.  Sometimes real bags will have no visible date codes as well. So while looking at the date code is a good first step in authenticating the bag, it is not a stand-alone technique for authenticating a Louis Vuitton.

 

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A friend has a Neverfull with a fabric “made in” tag and the bag I am looking at doesn’t.

Not all bags have a fabric “made in” tag. This is something newer for Louis Vuitton and specific to bags produced in the United States. Older bags with a country of origin in the U.S.A. (date code SD) likely will not have a fabric “made in” tag.  Even the presence of a fabric “made in” tag doesn’t guarantee that the bag is authentic, we’ve even seen replica bags with fabric “made in tags”.

 

If I take my Louis Vuitton bag to a store will the sales associate authenticate it?

No. This is a common misconception for people.  You can not take a bag into Louis Vuitton and ask the sales associate to authentic it.  There is a good reason behind the Louis Vuitton policy that prevents this. Louis Vuitton does not want to be held liable for the accuracy or inaccuracy of an individual store employee advising people on replicas.

 

How do I get my Louis Vuitton bag repaired?

Louis Vuitton does offer repair services for their items. Most stores and sales associates are able to help you if you bring the item into the store.  They will no do any repairs on items that are not authentic, but that also does not mean that they pre-authenticate your item at the store. If you have a pre-owned Louis Vuitton or are not the original owner of a Louis Vuitton, I highly recommend getting an authentication before you bring an item in for repair.

 

My Neverfull doesn’t have the pouchette, is it still authentic?

Possibly.  I own a Neverfull from 2012 that did not come with a pochette (although I wish I did). The addition of the matching pouchette to go with the Neverfull is something that they added as part of a later price increase.

 

How difficult is it to get a new Pochette Metis and where is the best place to buy one?

Getting a Pochette Metis online from Louis Vuitton is pretty difficult. Getting a Pochette Metis in a store is slightly less difficult.  Getting a pre-owned Pochette Metis from a reputable seller is much easier. Getting an authentic Pochette Metis from a site like eBay or Poshmark is very difficult due to the volume of replicas being sold right now.

 

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Do all vintage bags not have date codes?

No. Vintage bags typically do have date codes. Even a 100+ year old Louis Vuitton trunk has an item identification number that traces its origin.  What you will more typically find is a bag with a microfiber lining and a date code that has worn off. But more often than not there is a date code, you just need to know where to look.

 

If my bag doesn’t have a date code can it still be real?

Yes. It can still be real but would need to be closely examined. More often than not a date code is probably there but somewhere hidden.  However, we have authenticated real vintage Louis Vuitton bags without a date code.

 

What is the trademark heat stamp?

The trademark heat stamp on a Louis Vuitton is typically stamped onto the leather and says Louis Vuitton – Made in …..  This stamp identifies that this is a trademarked bag and was initially intended to show that that bag was authentic. With advanced technologies, people now replicate Louis Vuitton bags to include a trademark heat stamp. Don’t assume that just because there is a trademark heat stamp the bag is automatically authentic.

 

What is a Certificate of Authenticity for a designer bag?

A Certificate of Authenticity for a designer bag is an independent authenticator’s official form stating that they have authenticated a bag and find it to be authentic. It is not issued by Louis Vuitton since authenticators are independent and not affiliated with Louis Vuitton.  Certificates of Authenticity or COA’s for short, are a great way to ensure that you get maximum resale value for your bag.

 

Is there a checklist to authenticate a pre-owned Louis Vuitton?

If you are curious about a Louis Vuitton you already own or in the early stages of searching for a pre-owned Louis Vuitton we recommend starting here in authenticating a bag.  While we never recommend the checklist as a replacement for an expert authentication it is a good place to start narrowing down your research.

 

Does Louis Vuitton make bags in Italy?

Yes, Louis Vuitton does make bags in Italy not only in France (they also make bags in the U.S.A. as well). It’s a common misconception that bags from Italy are counterfeit.  Bags can show date codes replicated to be from anywhere that Louis Vuitton makes bags so going off the date code alone will never tell you if a bag is real.

 

What bags do you see the most replicas for?

There are replicas for almost all Louis Vuitton bags, wallets, and even accessories. Based on the popularity of certain styles we come across many replicas for Neverfull bags, pochette metis bags, Palm Spring backpacks, and wallets. Specifically, collections like Louis Vuitton Supreme are widely replicated in what I refer to as 1-to-1 super fakes.  

 

Can you get a Louis Vuitton wallet authenticated?

You can get a Louis Vuitton wallet authenticated.  You can even get Louis Vuitton shoes, belts, scarves and almost anything from their collection authenticated, even if the item does not have a date code.

 

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Do Louis Vuitton wallets have date codes?

Louis Vuitton wallets do have date codes.  They are typically in a flap or pocket, stamped on and tucked out of sight. As with vintage or repaired items, there are exceptions where an authentic item might not have a date code.  There are also many exceptions where fake wallets have a date code. Wallets are one of the most common Louis Vuitton replicas we see.

 

What are the Louis Vuitton bags that you see the most fakes for?

Typically we see the most fakes for bags that are the most popular. Bags like the Neverfull or Speedy are both popular and simple designs so those are the two bags that we see many many counterfeits for. A popular bag like the Pouchette Metis or the Palm Springs backpack holds their value very well on the second-hand market. But they are also highly replicated so purchasing a pre-owned one online without getting it pre-authenticated is a risk that I wouldn’t recommend.

 

What is a French Company Louis Vuitton bag?

From the late 1970’s until the early 1990’s Louis Vuitton worked with a company called The French Company through a licensing agreement to made and sell Louis Vuitton for North American customers. Their designs and marking were very different than what is typically seen on Louis Vuitton with no date codes, zippers by TALON, ECLAIR or C&C. The Speedy and Keepall also both used a different locking system called tucky tucky. French company bags were also made with coated leather.  In today’s market, their value is no more or less, with customers typically preferring the non-French Company style Louis Vuitton.

 

What Louis Vuitton bags hold their value the best?

The answer really will vary with time.  I have a Neverfull from 2015 that was probably only $700 at the time. Due to increased demand for that bag and the tote style trending the bag has had probably over 100% of its value.  I also recently was lucky enough to get a Pochette Metis in store and I could have walked out and sold it for quite a bit more than I paid (I’m sure my spouse wishes I had).

 

How do I avoid buying a fake Louis Vuitton on accident?

The most accurate and easy way to ensure that you are buying an authentic Louis Vuitton is by ordering an email authentication.  A Louis Vuitton authentication expert has decades of experience that you simply won’t be able to learn in the days/weeks that you are hunting for your bag. While doing your research is always recommended, the assurance of knowing you aren’t about to spend hundreds if not thousands on an authentic bag is worth is something that most savvy second hand Louis Vuitton buyers always go for.

 

What sites do you recommend when trying to buy a pre-owned Louis Vuitton online?

There is no doubt that there are great deals on pre-owned Louis Vuitton through sites like eBay, Tradesy or Poshmark.  But the savings you are looking for comes with a risk, authenticity.  These sites have a high concentration of replica bags. I have helped too many customers who purchased bags for thousands of dollars and were absolutely floored when they ordered an authentication and discovered the bag was fake.  If your budget is limited and you have time the time do the vetting of bags these sites are a good option as long as you get a pre-purchase authentication to ensure that the bag you are about to drop hundreds if not thousands of dollars on is real.  If you are looking to remove the labor-intensive search through listing after listing of bags, I highly recommend Fashionphile.  The company takes in and warehouse all inventory with personal inspection, photography, and control of the listing.  The bags they sell have already been authenticated and meet a certain quality standard. The best part of all, they are one of the only sites that offer a return policy (with some limitation). This means that you get to see the bag in person, ensure that it matches your expectation and have the option to return for a full refund if it doesn’t.  Fashionphile even offers buyback rate to let you know what price they will rebuy the bag from you if you decide to sell it in the future.

 

In Gratitude Legos in my Louis

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Disclaimer:   LegosinmyLouis.com, is an independent luxury designer authentication service and is not affiliated with any designers, including the designer of the item reviewed.  

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4 Comments

  • Reply Randy Sussman October 23, 2018 at 5:06 pm

    AWESOME article Betsy!!!!!! Thanks so much for this!!! 🙂

    • Reply Betsy October 23, 2018 at 5:45 pm

      You’re welcome Randy! Have lots more like it coming down the line soon.

  • Reply Audrie November 2, 2018 at 7:46 am

    I am looking at bags online, and have seen several damier ebene Neverfulls with RED metallic heat stamping for the Louis Vuitton Made In ______ tag I was wondering if this is ever corroborated on authentic bags or a sign of a fake.

    • Reply Betsy November 2, 2018 at 8:55 am

      Hi Audrie! The Neverfull is tricky because its has been in production for so long, is very popular (high production volume) and there have been several subtle variations over the years. Just like how the date code can be a real sequence but on a fake bag. I would always recommend getting a Neverfull authenticated before you purchase because the replica Neverfull bags would look almost completely real to an untrained eye. Also, if you haven’t read this guide to authenticate a Neverfull it would be a great resource for you: https://legosinmylouis.com/step-by-step-guide-to-authenticate-a-louis-vuitton-neverfull/ Hope that helps!

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