How to differentiate real and fake Bearbricks?
Fake Bearbricks have been flooding the market, from Medicom Toy's home market Japan, to the rest of Asia and beyond. Fakes used to be distinguishable, however, that has changed since 2020.
As the saying goes, "Imitation is the highest form of flattery".
Fakes produced are getting close to the real Bearbricks themselves, with similar moulds and mechanisms to the original. It is a cat and mouse game between Medicom Toy and fake Bearbrick producers - every time Medicom Toy improves the manufacturing process, the fake Bearbrick manufacturers will catch up with end products of higher quality as well.
In this post, we share some of our pointers on identifying fakes versus authentic pieces, since online shopping is the key purchasing habit for most collectors. Do note that the list of pointers is non-exhaustive and cannot be taken as a factual guide in identifying fake Bearbricks. Identifying fakes in real life can be relatively easier, since you'll get to scrutinise the product(s) in detail.
If the Bearbrick comes in a set of 400%+100%, most sellers will sell them as a box set of 400%+100%. The Bape x Mastermind set below shows the example of a 400% fake versus an authentic 400%+100% box set.
Box sets with 400%+100% are wider. Fakes usually come in 400% only, since the production cost of fake 100% may not be justifiable.
In another example, My First Be@rbrick B@by in pastel comes in a window box, but the fake piece comes in a random box.
(Shop My First Be@rbrick B@by Pearl Coating 400%+100% here)
On one of the most popular series - My First Be@rbrick Baby, the differences on the water crest colourway are distinguishable through:
- Colour of the finishes - Fake piece has a lighter finishing as compared to the authentic piece
- Font - The word B@BY has a larger gap in the fake piece, versus a heavier font weight (thicker) on the authentic piece; and
- Holes on the feet - They are white on the fake piece instead of coloured
The chrome version of Garfield will only be released in December 2021, but the fakes have already hit the market. The fake piece has a gold tone as compared to the prototype shown during Medicom Toy 25th Anniversary, which has a heavier orange hue.
In the MOMA's Van Gogh The Starry Night piece, the fake came in a glossy finish, while the authentic piece has a matte finishing. Note that the holes on the fake are white instead of coloured.
If the price is too good to be true, it probably is. Do your research on prices before purchasing the Bearbrick!
Pic credits: bearbricklove.com
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