By now, the Kardashian-Jenner clan is well aware that success has its downside.
One came into clear focus Wednesday when Kylie Jenner took to Snapchat to alert customers of her namesake cosmetics line of a web site selling counterfeit copies of its products. “I feel responsible to give you guys a warning because there’s people out there that are trying to steal your money,” the reality star-turned-beauty mogul said on the social-media platform, singling out kyliecosmeticsoutlet.com as the offending web site. Referring to the official brand site kyliecosmetics.com, she continued, “It looks exactly like mine, but it’s not.”
Jenner and Laura Nelson, founder and president of Seed Beauty, the brand incubator and parent company of Kylie Cosmetics, suggested the fake products purveyed by kyliecosmeticsoutlet.com could be dangerous. Jenner cautioned they contain glue and mentioned a customer whose lips stuck together as a result of applying an imitation item. “This is getting so out of hand people. Please, please, please don’t trust any other web site,” she said.
Nelson emphasized that counterfeiting “is a very big problem. It’s something that we take very seriously, and we think it is definitely harmful for consumers not just on a customer service and financial level, but truly for health and safety. It is important that everyone knows exactly what is going on their lips and face, and when counterfeit products are introduced into the marketplace, you lose that ability to know what you are putting on your body.”
Kylie Cosmetics is working with the FBI and other governmental agencies to fight counterfeiting, according to Nelson. Talking about kyliecosmeticsoutlet.com, she elaborated, “We are working very diligently specifically with the FBI on that case in particular in order to shut that down. We receive countless e-mails and accounts of people honestly believing when they are on that site that they are purchasing from kyliecosmetics.com because it looks so similar.”
Asked about whether Kylie Cosmetics has an idea of who is behind kyliecosmeticsoutlet.com, Nelson responded, “It is very complicated, it turns out. We have sent numerous cease-and-desist letters as we follow the chain of who is running it. It is an active investigation, and we are working with and cooperating with different governmental agencies.” She added, “They are definitely trying to create different URLs that are similar [to kyliecosmetics.com]. Different ones pop up and come down. It’s a constant battle that we are facing to try to minimize consumer confusion.”
The copycat web sites are capitalizing on the popularity of Kylie Cosmetics. When the brand launches a product, stocks are regularly depleted within minutes. Kyliecosmeticsoutlet.com features bogus versions of the latest Kylie Cosmetics’ releases, including the Kyshadow Burgundy Palette, which it states is sold out, and directs customers to Jenner’s app for updates on product information. But Jenner said customers shouldn’t be fooled. “Only shop at kyliecosmetics.com if you want my products because, anywhere else, they don’t have them,” she advised on Snapchat.