Updated: Oct 26, 2018

Chanel is a company that does not need an introduction - it is one of the most famous, covetable and respectable brands on the planet. Since Chanel is one of the worlds most sought after brands…they’re also one of the most copied! The counterfeit industry can be extremely deceptive. How can you tell if a Chanel bag is real or fake? At The Modernist we consider authenticity as our core value, we have prepared a list of guides to make sure your Chanel handbag is authentic! If you’re looking to learn how to authenticate or just want to learn more about Chanel, you’ve come to the right place! Just remember the following facts.


The iconic CC-lock was actually designed by Karl Lagerfeld in the 1980s and it is the first thing one must check for authenticity. The CC lock can feature either raised or flat finishes with the right C overlapping the left C at the top and the left C overlapping the right C at the bottom. 


An authentic Chanel bag chain will feel heavier and more substantial than on a counterfeit. The stitching on the leather intertwined between the chain is perfectly stitched with no bumps, no threads, clean and seamless. This is what you pay for - for the flawless craftsmanship!


The CC on the inside, it should feel soft and not as if there is a cardboard inside. The widths of each C are equal and they must also match the width of the gap between them.


Lettering in Chanel stamps is always clean and sharp. The colour of an inside stamp, that says CHANEL and Made in France or Made in Italy, must be of the same colour as a hardware of the purse. 


On the inside of the bag the back of the turnstile lock you should see a backplate like the ones pictured here, that says Chanel on the left, while on the right side it says Paris. Chanel only use flat (slot) head screws.

Stitch Count

An authentic Chanel handbag will feature up to 11 stitches per panel. Lining on a genuine bag lies flat against the material without any visible lumps, bumps, missed stitches or uneven seams by any circumstances.

Authenticity Card & Serial Number

The authenticity card matches the serial number inside the bag and it will never have the hologram and rainbow effect. From 2005 and onwards feature a grey circular symbol at top right. 


An authentic Chanel bag is constructed with the rounded corners and feature a boxy shape.


The most popular leathers, used for Chanel handbags are usually a lambskin or a caviar leather. Lambskin is loved due to its soft and luxurious texture. It feels as soft as a butter to the skin. It gives a very sleek look. Whereas, caviar leather, it is a pebbled cow skin, textured and grainy. It is more durable and less likely to get scratches, the most preferred type of leather for a daily use or for an edgy style.

Date codes

Authentic Chanel handbags from the mid 1980s on come with authenticity cards embossed with a serial number (pictured on right). The serial number matches the serial number appearing on a sticker placed somewhere within the handbag interior lining. The serial number sticker has Chanel logos and was protected by a clear tape with hologram security feature from approximately 2000-on. The sticker, Chanel logo, and hologram design varied with the manufacturing date.






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