How to tell if a figure is real or fake

Many figures out there could either be the real deal, or a bootleg. Don’t know what a bootleg is? Let me sum it up.

Bootleg: A fake/pirated unofficial version of anything, but in this case, a figure

Bootlegs also look nothing like the original, but some can be sneaky! This post will tell you how to identify before you buy!


Here’s an example, this is figma Kuroneko. One is real, and one is fake. The one on the left is the bootleg, the one on the right, is the real version. Bootleg’s typically have uneven proportions since the whole face is slanted on the fake one ^^; Let’s look at another example.


Once again, fake is on the left, real is on the right. As you can see bootlegs have different colors too! And the fringe mold is a lot flatter.


This isn’t always true of figures, but the bootleg version has no holographic sticker! Sometimes a real version may not have it either, so this isn’t the best way to determine if it’s real or not.9ffa02d0b447e5f1bec79ad161c0aa65

Bootleg has no copyright!


This example is of nendoroid Snow Miku-Strawberry White Kimono Ver.

The bootleg is on the left, and as you can see the color is different then the official! aca836a1a5f669163bbdbab7522b7856

Sometimes, the bootleg looks just plain weird. The real version is on the left, bootleg on the right. Bootleg makers keep the glossy shine on the nendoroid, and don’t normally put gradient on the figure. That makes it really easy to tell them apart!


Look how yellow that bootleg is! Bootlegs have sloppy sculpting and the parts aren’t stuck together really well.


The real flap on a figma box stretches all the way across, the bootleg box only goes halfway.


A bootleg figure doesn’t have the plastic wrap that protects the figure from scratches or paint damage during shipping. This isn’t true, though, if you buy a used figure.a7ca4b0d93bd8fa3a7169abca2855b51

The bootleg’s joint in connected to the head, while the official version is a separate piece.f0d4c77e80dbd53781f599dd7276799e

This is pretty much always true, a bootleg figure’s joints are mis-colored.


Missing stuff…? The bootleg version has no ice sculpture of Miku!009c89621e03682a476242a3689ea6d9

On the bootleg (left) the joints are ready to pop right out!


“I think your stand got a little dirty”

The bootleg version looks, as said, dirty….

Second of all,

Be careful who you buy from! Especially on a website such as Ebay! If the seller doesn’t have any pictures of the actual product, you may want to ask for some before you purchase! If it’s too good to be true, it most likely is. Heard of this thing called a “Chinese Version”? NO SUCH THING! Hahah, not to freak out too much or anything but if the seller calls it a “Chinese Version” what they’re really saying is “This is a fake figure but I thought I’d tell it to you in a way that would seem like it’s real”. Check out this link below,

It has a list of the known bootleg sellers on Ebay (this has saved me from some unhappy purchases!) If you have any questions about a specific figure, feel free to post a reply below. Thanks for reading!

(All Photos from the Goodsmile Company website, bootleg warnings)

If you’re planning to buy a figure but not entirely sure, try to find it on this list above and spot the differences!


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