As we see an influx of counterfeit Elf Bar, Crystal and Elux disposable vapourizers we thought we’d take a look at why you should be concerned and how to tell if the disposables you’ve purchased are indeed genuine.
Nowadays, vaping is seen as a fantastic alternative to smoking tobacco and with the industry and community growing at such pace, it’s no surprise that fraudulent copycats have started to emerge. Wherever there is success there are those looking to take advantage. With the boom in disposable devices, something that’s much easier to produce and sell, we’ve heard of many different fake disposables popping up in the market and it’s certainly something to be concerned about.
What’s the problem with fake vapes?
Many of these vape products can often appear genuine which can lure you into a false sense of security, especially if you see it at a much cheaper or discounted price. The Tobacco and Related Products Regulations (TPD) ensure that your products are safe and tested. This process requires manufacturers to inform governing bodies of the exact ingredients used, ensuring that nothing illegal, fake or harmful is used. Of course, these fakes do not comply with this, meaning that the bargain disposable you bagged could potentially be illegal and harmful to you.
Elf Bar has recently been a high-profile brand to feel the sting of counterfeiting. The UK market especially has seen a large influx of counterfeit and cloned Elf Bars, as well as non TPD compliant versions. Not only can this risk the health of any who mistakenly use these fraudulent products, but unfairly puts Elf Bar in the spotlight for something that is out of their hands.
In the UK we have strict guidelines and restrictions that we must adhere to on the selling of vaping products - for the safety of customers. For example, when the Geek Bar Pro, a product that was marketable for the US but not the UK due to its larger volume of E-Liquid, started showing up in the UK this also raised some concern. Consumers could purchase these disposables believing that they’re getting their usual amount of E-Liquid and usual nicotine strength, which is just not the case as it was found to be 50mg/ml in these devices. While the maximum nicotine content allowed in the UK is 20mg/ml. This could create serious issues for those using them unknowingly.
What to look for in order to avoid fake vapes?
Most disposable vapes including Elf Bar, Lost Mary, SKE, Elux and Geek Bar have an authentication label somewhere on the packaging. Your best bet is to get the security code from the label and check it on the manufacturers verification on their respective website.
All products include serial numbers and if you are ever in doubt, you can email the manufacturer directly to verify if you have a legitimate product. Bear in mind the manufacturer’s details on the packaging may also be incorrect however this information should be also available online.
Purchase from trustworthy vapeshops
Ensuring that you only buy from trusted companies that follow industry standards is a great way to be on the safe side.
The price is too good to be true
Often the bait used to convince you to buy fraudulent vape products is by offering them at lower or discounted prices. Although companies do vary pricing to be competitive; if the price is far lower than anyone else selling the same product then you should certainly question why.
Packaging and labelling
Vaping products have strict guidelines for packaging and are often very formulaic, so if you look out for key factors, you’ll be sure to spot the fakes. A best before date will be clear on the packaging plus the ingredients list. There will also be nicotine warnings printed onto the packaging. If the labelling isn’t clear, then avoid it.
If you think you’ve found/bought a fake or counterfeit vape product, we recommend checking the product over before using it, including contacting the manufacturer for the product. For example, the fake Elf Bar devices had incorrect manufacturer information on the packaging; a quick Google search can tell you who the correct manufacturer for Elf Bars is.