7 Signs of Authenticity of an original Hermès bag

7 Signs of Authenticity of an original Hermès bag

Hermès is one of the most relevant fashion brands today, and when it comes to bags and accessories, the French atelier is leading the way, especially with its three iconic bags: Birkin, Kelly and Constance.

The fame and popularity of these accessories has represented a great success for the atelier, but unfortunately, the attention is not always positive, since millions of counterfeits have emerged, affecting the buyers and the Hermès brand’s image.

If you have a large Hermès collection or are thinking of making your first purchase, we want to offer you some signs of authenticity that you can pay attention to to avoid acquiring a counterfeit, so you will not fall for scams and your investment will pay you good results in the future.

  1. Exclusivity and counterfeits
  2. 7 Signs of authenticity

Exclusivity and counterfeits


It is no secret to anyone that Hermès bags are extremely exclusive luxury accessories, made with the highest quality materials and with the work of expert craftsmen in France. These elements and the accompanying history of the Hermès trinity is what gives them the value they retain today.

High prices and the inability to easily find exclusive products in official stores is what drives counterfeiters to create these almost exact imitations of the iconic figure of Hermès number one accessories.

Do you want to know more about the official Hermès stores? Check it out in this guide.

These counterfeits are sold on web platforms, often with lower or even higher prices than the original bag, so that they take advantage of the customer’s need to get their dream luxury product.

These scammers study Birkin, Kelly and Constance bags in detail to imitate each of their features. However, there are still flaws in their creations, as no one can perfectly imitate the craftsmanship of the atelier’s artisans.

These details are what allow us to demonstrate the real authenticity of a Hermès bag, and, therefore, to know that we have a Birkin, Kelly or Constance that will retain its value over the years, and that it will continue to be a completely exclusive accessory in the luxury market.

7 Signs of authenticity

Next, we will provide you with an outline with the 7 signs of authenticity to make sure that your exclusive Hermès bag is completely original.

It does not matter if it is a Kelly, a Birkin or a Constance, as the three bags have characteristics in common that mark the seal of approval and identify them as Hermès creations.

However, it must be noted that Hermès counterfeits are so sophisticated that it is almost impossible to distinguish a real from a fake only by doing a physical examination. So you should always seek as many authenticity elements as you can to prove a bag’s origins and genuineness.

1. Materials and general structure


As mentioned above, Hermès exclusive bags have a very detailed crafting process, using materials of the highest quality, which are subjected to rigorous quality controls. Because of this, it is important that you carefully examine the material of your bag, making sure that the texture is that of natural leather; if it’s a crocodile bag, you should feel its scales, for no reason should it appear to be made of plastic, and it should not smell like chemicals.

Make sure that the scent of your bag is of new leather, although everything will depend on whether you bought it pre-loved or new. If it is a pre-loved bag, it should have an aged leather scent, that is, with a stronger smell.

About the texture, some Hermès bags are made from grained calfskin, so you should be able to feel and observe the grainy texture. This is key!

Weight is an important aspect, the skin and hardware used are dense enough, so your bag should not be too light, if it is, then it could be a counterfeit.

Regarding the general structure, investigate correctly what an original bag looks like, be it Kelly, Birkin or Constance, it is important that you recognize its silhouette, the way it looks on a surface and how the skin falls due to its natural weight, in this sense it depends on the bag model:

  • Kelly: The Kelly bag comes in two styles: Sellier or Retourné; in this case, the Sellier is much stiffer and pointed at its corners, while the Retourné shows a smooth, rounded silhouette. The Kelly bag has a very specific trapezoidal shape that identifies it.

  • Birkin: the Birkin is a bag that can be placed perfectly on a flat surface, it retains its shape and remains firm. However, the middle portion of the bag usually falls slightly, because the skin expands and looks natural, this is evident in the Birkin bag Retourné version. The Birkin bag can also come in a Sellier version, which is stiffer and pointed at its corners.

  • Constance: The Constance bag has a firm and resistant structure, with rounded and stiffer corners, it is a compact and small bag, so it should not be too soft or easy to mold with your hands, although it depends on the kind of skin it is made of.

Get to know more about Hermès skins and leathers.

2. Sizes


When purchasing an exclusive Hermès bag, it is imperative that you know how many sizes each model has, this will guarantee that you do not acquire a counterfeit in an unlikely size that does not exist in the reality of the atelier.

Keep in mind that the size is identified by the measurement of the base of the bag horizontally, this measurement in centimeters is the one that represents the size.

These are the available sizes of the Hermès trinity:

  • Kelly: The Kelly bag in its original model comes in sizes: 25, 28, 32, 35 and 40. However, there are also 20 cm Mini Kelly and 15 cm Micro Kelly models.

  • Birkin: The real Birkin comes in sizes: 25, 30, 35, and 40. There is also a 20 cm Birkin model, but it is most likely found on limited-edition handbags.

  • Constance: In the case of Constance there are sizes: 18 (Mini) and 24. There are also the 14 cm Micro Constance, and 25 cm Elan model, which is rectangular rather than square in shape.

Discover more about the Hermès bags sizes and versions.

3. Stitching


When it comes to authenticating the originality of a Hermès bag, the stitching is the key point with which a counterfeit can easily be dismissed. Why? Well, because the stitching of the French atelier is completely exclusive to the brand, and its origin dates back to 1837, when Thierry Hermès opened his first workshop.

In this way, the stitching of an exclusive Hermès bag must be very particular, since it is made using the saddle method also called ‘Sellier’, which consists of intertwining two stitches made with different needles, to create a pattern that is characterized by its diagonal way.

What you should look for in the stitching of your exclusive Hermès bag is that they show diagonal stitches very close together. It is also valid to appreciate the continuity, that is, to be aware that, if on one side of the bag there are a certain number of stitches, on the other side they must be the same amount. Only in this way is it possible to prove that the bag’s stitching is authentic.

4. Hardware


The hardware of Hermès bags is truly important when it comes to proving their authenticity. First of all, you should know that the original metal pieces are crafted based on brass, an alloy of copper and zinc, and then they are plated with gold, palladium, permabrass or ruthenium, precious metals that have a well-defined weight and value.

All the Hermès bags’ hardware is composed of these materials, so they must all have the same color and consistency throughout a single bag. If the material appears weak or begins to show signs of dents, chips or peeling, it is a counterfeit.

Discover more of Hermès hardware.

5. Turning closures, clasps and zippers


Although these elements are part of the hardware, there are also other characteristics that you should look for if you want to prove the authenticity of your Hermès bag. For example, the famous turning closures or ‘Tourets’ on the Birkin and Kelly bags, they should turn smoothly without getting stuck. It is also important that they fits perfectly into the metal plaques of the sangles.

In the case of the Constance, it is impossible not to notice its iconic “H” clasp, so this must be carefully examined to show that it fits well and that the mechanism works properly.

When it comes to zippers, all three bags contain a zippered pocket on the inside. These zippers should open and close smoothly, and the mechanism for opening them should be parallel to the teeth of the zip, rather than hanging down. This is one of the clearest symbols of authenticity from Hermès.

It should be noted that the piece of leather in the mechanism to open the zipper must be of the same material and color as the bag, it must show the shape of a diamond.

6. Stamps, prints and metal engravings


This point is perhaps the most important of all when demonstrating the authenticity of your Hermès bag, since it is about the stamps, prints and metal engravings present in the material of each accessory, with these codes and brand patterns you can guarantee on a smaller scale that your bag is authentic.

There are three types of markings:

  • Prints: these prints are those that indicate the brand, in all three models they can be found a few millimeters below the top seam, under the closing flaps. This print shows the following words: ‘Hermès – Paris – Made in France’, it must be exactly the same color as the hardware of the bag. There are also additional special symbols printed next to the main print, they denote characteristics about the skin in which the handbag was made, especially when it comes to exotic skins.

  • Metal engravings: they are key engravings made in certain pieces of hardware. The most representative one is the one that reads: ‘Hermès – Paris’ it can be found on the left plaque in Birkin and Kelly sangles. On Constance bags it can be seen under the ‘H’ clasp. There are other additional metal engravings, such as the ones in the padlock and keys of Birkin and Kelly bags, as well as interior zippers.

  • Date stamps: this stamping is located in the interior of the bags, and it indicates the accessory’s production code (with which the craftsman who made it is identified) and the year of creation represented by a single letter. This date stamp does not have any color, it is heat-stamped on the leather.

To find all the information about date stamps and what they mean, check out this complete guide with everything you need to know.

7. Invoice and payment tickets


If you plan to purchase your exclusive Hermès bag through a resale platform or somewhere other than the official store, you need to know that there is a very effective sign of authenticity and that is the invoice and the payment ticket of the bag, it shows the precise data of the model, the date stamp, the exact date, time and amount of the purchase in the official store.

With this data you can check your bag and check that everything matches to make sure that it is an exclusive original bag. Always demand the presence of the Hermès invoice and payment tickets before purchasing your bag.

To learn about the official invoice as an authentication method, see this complete guide.

Now you know the 7 signs of authenticity of an exclusive Hermès bag, here you will find a detailed guide to each member of the trinity: Birkin, Kelly and Constance.

If you are looking for the ideal and safe place to make your next luxury purchase, we invite you to enter our online store at The Birkin’s & Kelly’s House, a perfect space for you to find the authentic handbags you are looking for, brand-new in box and with the best prices of the luxury resale market.

Trust the experts and buy an authentic Hermès bag today!

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