Fake Vape? These are the Signs Your Vape May Actually Be Counterfeit!

by | Mar 27, 2024

According to the UK Vaping Industry Association, (UKVIA), 1.57 million illegal vapes were seized in 2023, with 95% of illegal vape sellers going unpunished.

How to Spot a Fake Vape?

UK Chancellor of the Exchequer Jeremy Hunt recently announced new taxes on vape products, which some fear will fuel the growth of the black market as Britons look for cheaper alternatives. However, it can be difficult to distinguish fake vapes from genuine vapes. Therefore, in order to help our consumers identify counterfeit vapes, as a veteran who has been working in the vape industry for ten years, the editor has compiled and shared some common signs and precautions to identify whether a vape product is counterfeit.

Packaging and Branding

Genuine vape products usually have well-designed and printed packaging. Pay attention to the printing quality, color vibrancy and detail of the packaging. Counterfeit products may have blurred printing, abnormal colors, or incorrect markings. Additionally, carefully inspect product packaging for spelling errors, grammatical errors, or other obvious flaws, which may be signs of counterfeit products.

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Price and Channels

Underpriced or unusual vape products are often warning signs of counterfeit or inferior products. Genuine vape products usually have a certain market price range, and products priced significantly below this range may have problems. In addition, when purchasing vape products, you should choose officially authorized channels, such as official websites, authorized retailers or designated offline stores, to ensure that you purchase genuine products.

Pay Attention to Product Appearance and Quality

Genuine vape products usually have good design and build quality. Carefully observe the product’s craftsmanship details, material quality and assembly accuracy. Counterfeit products may have a rough appearance, inferior materials, or improper assembly. Genuine products often have quality control marks, serial numbers, or holographic stickers for authentication.

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Check the E-liquid Bottle and Cartridge Capacity

Genuine vape products usually have capacity information marked on the e-juice bottle or cartridge, such as the number of milliliters or the number of uses of the cartridge. Check the capacity mark on the e-liquid bottle or cartridge and compare it with the information provided on the brand’s official website or official documents. Counterfeit products may have inaccurate capacity markings or no markings at all.

Check Whether the Vape Contains Prohibited Ingredients

Be sure to check if your vape contains any ingredients that are not allowed by law, such as taurine, caffeine and colorings. If the vape contains banned ingredients, do not buy it as they are not suitable for consumption.

Check Nicotine Strength and Warnings on Packaging

There must be a nicotine warning on vape packaging, so if it doesn’t appear, consider it a red flag. In the EU, the nicotine concentration of E-liquid should not exceed 2% (20mg/ml). The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in the United States states that the nicotine concentration of E-liquid should not exceed 59 mg/ml. Other countries or regions may have different nicotine concentration limits or regulations, which need to be determined according to local regulations.

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Verify Anti-Counterfeiting Labels and Verification Codes

Check the packaging of your vape device for security labels. If this information is missing, it means the device is illegal. However, simply showing an anti-counterfeiting label on the packaging does not mean the vape is legal. Scratch off the scratchable coating and a unique verification code is included underneath. You can go to the official website of the vape retailer and enter the verification to let you know whether the product is authentic.


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