Monday, December 14, 2015

Too Faced Chocolate Bar Palette - Real vs Fake

Not Sponsored/No Samples


My most popular post by far this year was the one I did showing how to spot a fake Mary Lou-Manizer by The Balm. I still get messages at least once a week from people who are wondering if their bargain highlighter is a fake.

When a friend told me that she had bought a Chocolate Bar palette for €15 at a Christmas market recently, I asked her if she would bring it over and show me. I bought mine from Debenhams about a month or two ago for €47.

When I put hers next to mine the differences were immediately obvious, but she had never seen one in reality before so didn't know what it was supposed to look like. Here are a few photographs so that you don't fall into the same trap. This one was purchased in the Westmeath area about two weekends ago at a Christmas market.

Firstly, brands like Too Faced, Urban Decay, MAC - they don't sell wholesale to market sellers. No matter what they tell you, there is no way on earth that they could have bought those brands in bulk anywhere and sell them at a discount like that. My friend was told that the reason these palettes were so cheap was that her cousin was a company rep so could get them at wholesale prices. They had a whole conversation about the mark-up in shops and how it's so high.

The real box is pale pink, the fake one looks more peach. Still - if they weren't both together, I don't think I'd know the difference. The fake box is dull, the print quality isn't as good and the lettering isn't as sharp.

The shades on the back of the real one look cooler, while the ones on the back of the fake one look like someone has altered them. The print quality is poor, but again - if I didn't have them side by side and I hadn't seen it before, I don't think I'd know.

The only difference in the little booklets is that the fake one looks more faded, less clear. All of the packaging looks more washed out, as if it has faded over time. The print quality on the real packaging and booklet is much sharper, much crisper.

Here's the easiest way to tell if it's counterfeit or not. The real palette has a glossy finish. The fake one is matte.

Real Shadows 

The real shadows now have the names printed underneath, and are surrounded by light brown/beige plastic. Some older palettes may have the names printed on a sheet, but they are very much unlikely to still be in stock as this was a change made in 2013.

Fake Shadows

The fake shadows have the names printed on a sheet of plastic, and they're surrounded by dark brown plastic the same colour as the outer packaging.

The biggest giveaway with this palette is the smell - the shadows are infused with cocoa powder so there should be a faint smell of chocolate when you open the palette Predictably, the cheap one smells of chemicals and talc.

Already this week, Gardaí have made a huge leap in getting some of this crap off the streets by siezing over €200,000 of counterfeit shoes, bags and makeup in the Midlands. If you see stuff like this for sale, report it to your local Garda station the minute you see it. It's illegal to sell counterfeit goods, and it's beyond harmful.

I've gotten into arguments on youtube with people before who say "well I can't afford to spend $50 on a palette, I buy mine from Ali Express for $5". I can't understand that logic at all, if I were going to spend the equivalent of $5 on something I was going to be putting on my skin, I'd go to my local pharmacy and buy something from a budget range instead of trying to keep up with the Joneses and having a label on display. Nobody actually cares what anyone else has in their makeup collection, despite us being a community of nosey stash-video addicts. What's in fake make-up?

If you like the look of the chocolate bar palettes but they're out of your price range, have a look at Makeup Revolution's chocolate palettes. Makeup Revolution are a great range with really good eyeshadows at great prices, coming in around the £8/€11 mark.

Please be careful around Christmas and New Year with markets selling makeup. Don't buy from Facebook selling pages either. Oh, and:


To read another post about counterfeit cosmetics, and for a look at some photographs of different fakes, have a look at this great post from Leanne of Blather and Beauty over on My Little Bábóg blog.


  1. Great post Sharon there would be no way I would tell it's a fake it's a good copy. The main thing people have to understand about fake makeup is they can be so harmful for your skin we have no idea what's in the products.

  2. The Naked fakes here in Asia are hilarious and terrifying in equal measure. Singapore is very tight on stopping fakes but shops & markets in Malaysia were full of them :(

  3. Great post Sharon will share on my Facebook Page. The amount of Fakes out there are shocking. People are openly selling fakes on Henry St. I reported it to Dublin city council but got no reponse, how they can sell so openly is beyond me.

  4. It drives me mad walking down Henry St when I see the fake Naked palettes and huge amounts of fake YSL Black Opium!

  5. Thank you for this post Sharon!

  6. A great post!.
    This time of year many people are sucked in buying for others and just don't realise the difference and this could really help :)
    And Ali Express - how on earth do they get away with it?

    Gillian  xx

  7. This is awesome ~ so many people buy fake stuff without realizing it xx Siobhan

  8. I think people get carried away with seeing a cheap price and forget that they have no idea what harmful chemicals could be in these fake products. I love the look of the Make Up Revolution palettes and they always get rave reviews, ideal if you are on a budget. x

  9. This. This annoys me so much. I don't like shameless copies like this. Why don't they just make a good DUPE instead of a blatant fake? It's like carrying a fake Chanel or wearing fake Louboutins, I just don't get it.

    That said, it IS a good copy I guess.

  10. Really interesting post...thx for sharing! xx

  11. Very good post !! It's mad the amount of fakes going around!!!

  12. This is very helpful. Thank for sharing!

  13. I can't believe the market stall holder had a whole conversation pretending they were real! That's unbelievable. Didn't even know these fakes existed - great post x
    Becca | theBeautyInbox

  14. Very nice post! Tha fake looks very cheap.
    Something I don't agree on is that you say we shouldn't buy from
    Facebook. I sell on faceboom and I only sell authentic, I buy everything in the USA and sell it in my country, there are some of us who are legit.

  15. Wow! I was about to purchase the faux product off of ebay. Thanks to your post, I didn't!

  16. Too faced also doesn't test on animals (they are cruelty -free). But ALL makeup that originates in China and other Asian countries DOES test on and torture animals


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