Amazon really is dominating the market right now, and I really cannot blame you for wanting to shop there. It’s easy, the creation of Amazon Prime allows for super fast shipping, sometimes even on the same day, and you can do it all from the comfort of your home while wearing your pajamas. That being said, certain things just aren’t a good idea to purchase via the internet or even off drugstore shelves such as Target, CVS, RiteAid, etc.

If your haircare products say “ sold only in professional salons” or something similar, there is a reason for that. One, when you buy from a reputable salon or stylist, you can rest easy knowing that your products are not expired, watered down, or worse yet…counterfeit.

So what is the grey market? Grey market (also called Diverted products) are in between…they aren’t illegal persay, but they aren’t exactly reputable. It could be products that licensed pros sold off, it could be stuff that was found, there are a plethora of ways to come across these items for mass retailers. When buying, you’re playing a game of roulette. Now, if you know anything about gambling, you know that roulette has the worst odds for the player.

There are some signs to look for to see if your items are legit. Use your senses..does it look unusually watered down? Is it abnormally thick? Does it smell different than usual? Is there a batch code on the bottom? Batch codes are HUGE as fakes hardly ever have them.

If you want to stay on the safe side, just buy from reputable sources. Nine times out of ten, the pricing is similar anyway. Most lines such as Kevin Murphy, Unite, Enjoy, Redken, Surface, Kendra, Schwartzkopf, etc don’t openly sell to these mass retailers.

Also, if you’re unsure, a good stylist won’t mind answering questions about this topic.