Ever since Sleek brand of cosmetic product found its way into the Nigerian market, women of class and style have found it quite essential to enhance their beauty. As a result, Sleek brand of products became in great demand by most women. This, however, has led to the production of fake brand of this range of product, which has now flooded the market.

The emergence of fake Sleek products in the market has caused quite a stir with registered Sleek distributors up in arms over what has come to be known as the contamination of a trusted brand. The brand's popularity seems to have enticed these fake peddlers to leap on the bandwagon albeit unlawfully.

The first cases were reported in the first quarter of 2009 when customers came across certain cosmetic products labelled Sleek but on removing the packaging, they realized they might actually be fakes. This was confirmed at the nearest Sleek studio.

Before long, traders of these fake sleek products multiplied, quickly entering into markets like Balogun, Trade fair and even Onitsha, initially enticing customers with cheaper prices.

Although Sleek representatives in the markets have maintained a close eye on them, the fraudsters have got better at their game as the weeks and months go by; from improving their packaging to look almost like the original Sleek version to increasing their prices to avoid easy detection. It does seem like there is no end to their tricks.

According to management, the fake products are being imported into the country from yet unknown locations in Asia. The implication of this fake products is that they are not properly produced and can cause damage to the skin and health in general.

Cases have been recorded where test subjects reported a glaucoma-like effect and reaction (double vision and redness of eyes) immediately after using a fake Sleek I-divine eye shadow. Packaged to look just like the original, a trained eye can tell the difference; although at a recent seminar organized for Sleek representatives to further educate and inform them on the fakes, very few could accurately tell the difference between the original products and sample fake products.

Hence, Sleek Nigeria advises her customers to locate registered franchises and distributors who can provide them with the original product of their choice.

As it is, Sleek has joined forces with NAFDAC and is determined to rid the Nigerian market of these fake products.

Recent raids carried out in Lagos in the latter part of last year by NAFDAC officials saw several fake product peddlers arrested and their goods seized. Other raids are scheduled for the 1st and 2nd quarters of this year and will include other states where fake products have been reported. NAFDAC advices the public to report any person suspected of peddling fake Sleek products as they are considered harmful to the skin.