Founded in 1975 by Jim Jannard from his garage, Oakley is now a household name in the sunglasses world. Known for their innovative designs, high quality materials and high price tags, it unfortunately means they are one of the most faked brands in the world.
Whilst the company goes to great lengths to stop this illegal trade, it seems to get worse every year. With little protection of US patents and design rights in countries like China, a huge amount of forgeries are produced every year, and duly make their way to markets like the UK, Europe and the USA.
To stop you from being ripped off, we have produce d a handy guide to the main ways to spot fake Oakley sunglasses. Firstly, you should buy from a reputable company so that you have their guarantee of authenticity, and the ability to return them if required. However, if you still have doubts here are the top tips:
New Oakley sunglasses always come in a branded box. Check to see if the card the box is made from is heavy duty, and that the printing of the graphics are clear and sharp. It should also have a label on one end with a barcode, stating the model of the glasses. You can look this up to ensure it marches the pair within.
- ‘Microbag’ Dust Bag
All Oakley’s are supplied with a dust bag, which will be silky soft and branded. Check that the logo, including font underneath, match the correct logo which can be found on the website. The bag itself should be well constructed with no loose stitching, and a small material Oakley ‘O’ logo tag stitched to one end. Check this matches the official logo as well. Older bags are pink whilst newer ones are black (apart from special editions which will be patterned)
- Frame Logo
The signature ‘O’ logo appears on all models, and should always look flawless. There should be no obvious gaps, paint, glue or flaking. All of these signs of bad construction could point to a fake, as nothing like this would get through the strict quality control.
- Left and Right Arms
Genuine Oakley sunglasses are always marked with the make and model numbers, which can be verified to ensure they match. Whilst not any guarantee that they are not fake, it is another point to check. On the left arm the model name, number and size details should be found, along with the lens number and bridge size. Check these numbers are the same as listed on the box. On the right arm ‘Made in USA’ should appear, along with the CE mark if they are sold in Europe.5. Paperwork
Sadly not all models come with paperwork, but if they do it should take the form of a folded booklet style leaflet. The ‘O’ logo should appear on the front and the booklet will unfold from there. A postage paid card is also included for returns and feedback.