In 2019, the global cosmetics industry was valued at $532.43 billion, with estimations suggesting that this will rocket to $805.61 billion by the end of 2023. This lucrative market has made it a popular target for counterfeiters.
Worldwide, cosmetics such as makeup, creams and perfumes are counterfeited each day. In the UK alone, counterfeit cosmetics are the third most investigated counterfeit product, with authorities seizing over £2.2 million worth of fake makeup and other cosmetics products. In America, the counterfeit cosmetics industry was valued at $75 million in 2021 (roughly 8% of total sales).
Although some shoppers will actively choose counterfeit products due to their lower price point and higher availability, the health risks for them are great. Counterfeit cosmetics can cause several serious health concerns due to the ingredients used. An investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) found that to keep prices low, manufacturers of fake products substitute key ingredients for chemicals such as lead, mercury and arsenic.