Sports Jersey Buying Guide – How to spot a Fake NFL NHL MLB NBA Jersey

Published by Jan Heaney on

Sports Jersey Buying Guide – How to spot a Fake NFL NHL MLB NBA Jersey

As sports fans, we all love our teams. We
show our support by wearing the same jerseys, shirts and tops as our heroes on the field.
But when you look at the price of them, you’ll say “How much?!”
There’s been a recent increase in the amount of fake jerseys being imported from China
mainly because real jerseys are so extortionately priced.
This guide shows you how to tell the difference between an authentic, replica and Chinese
fake jersey, and furthermore, should you buy one?
Now we’re using baseball jerseys as an example, but this could apply to football jerseys,
soccer shirts, hockey jerseys etc. So here are three seemingly similar baseball
jerseys. They may look the same but they’re all different.
And they all cost different amounts of money. Let’s start with this one, the Authentic
jersey. An authentic jersey is supposed to be the
exact jersey that the players wear on the field.
This is usually denoted somehow by the relevant tags.
Now if you look carefully, all the detail is embroidered in and it’s embroidered cleanly.
The lettering is multi-layered twill and zig-zag stitched, and the material is generally thicker
and of higher quality. The lettering on the back is usually nicely
proportioned and once again, multi-layered and zigzag stitched.
In short, every detail of the jersey is pretty much perfect. But this perfection costs money,
and an authentic jersey is usually several hundred dollars.
That’s not the cheapest thing in the world and most sports fans can’t afford that,
so that’s why teams also make Replica Jerseys.
These are usually toned down versions of the authentic, with not as many features and detail.
Usually they will denote this with a ‘genuine merchandise’ tag, instead of an authentic
one. The details are usually painted on and then
sewn to the jersey. Compare this to the authentic and you can
see where they skimp on costs. The material is usually thinner and not sewn
together in the same way. The same applies to the lettering, which costs
less to manufacture, and there are other distinguishing features that a sports fan can spot as a ‘replica
jersey’. These jerseys cost significantly less than
the authentic, but still out of reach for most sports fans, hence the unprecedented
demand for: Chinese Fake Jerseys.
As the name implies, the Chinese like to make fake versions of … well … everything.
And sports jerseys are no exception. They cost about a 10th of the price of an
authentic jersey, but when you look closely, you’ll see why.
Even though the tag says it’s authentic, it’s nowhere near the same as this authentic
tag. The material is usually paper thin compared
to an authentic jersey and the embroidered details are virtually non-existant.
This is evident pretty much everywhere on the jersey.
The lettering is usually the dead giveaway, as it’ll usually be out of proportion, the
wrong colour, the wrong material, cheaply sewn together, or in this case, all of the
above. Look at the details and you’ll quickly see
the difference in quality. And let’s address the large elephant in
Yes, the Toronto Blue Jays do have a jersey with the word ‘TORONTO’ on it, but that’s
the grey road jersey. This is clearly white so the Chinese really
have no concept of accuracy. Don’t be surprised if your jersey arrives
in the wrong colour, the wrong size, has the wrong details on it, or all of the above.
Don’t get me wrong, the Chinese have improved dramatically over the last few years – and
there’s a select few that could pass off as the real thing. But most of them suck … really
suck. So that’s a quick overview on the differences
of authentic, replica or Chinese fake jerseys. But I know you guys have some burning questions. Ninh, what’s your advice? Are they worth
buying? Generally the answer is ‘no’.
If you care about details like embroidery, logo, material and fit – you might want
to avoid these like the plague. Some of them, particularly the Nike NFL jerseys
coming out of china are quite good, but most of them are terrible.
If you’re really on a budget and you really have no money, but you want to buy a jersey
– these Chinese fakes are worth a buy. Try and find a reputable seller and always
look at pictures of the kind of jersey you wish to buy before you actually buy it. You
never know, you might actually get a good one. Ninh, if I’m not completely happy – can
I get a refund? The Chinese don’t like the word ‘refund’
and they’ll try everything in their power to avoid giving you your money back.
You might be in for a lengthy battle if you want to return your item. Consider this before
you make a purchase. I don’t care about all that stuff you jersey
mentioned – where can I get me some fake jerseys?
Easy, just go to and type in the kind of jersey you want. You’ll get
thousands of Chinese sellers selling you fake jerseys for about a 10th of the cost of a
real one, fully shipped. Buyer beware – they’re not all they’re
cracked up to be. So Ninh, what did you do with that hilariously
fake jersey you bought from China? I actually turned it into a sleeveless jersey,
tapered it a little and added a blue t-shirt underneath. It’s good for workouts and stuff,
but I probably wouldn’t wear it in public. I have my authentic jerseys for that.
If you have found this video helpful, please like comment, share and subscribe.
It takes me ages to make one of these things and good karma is very much appreciated.
Follow me on Twitter and discuss this video on Reddit, and if you like this sort of video
– let me know in the comments section …. … oh yeah, Go Jays! Obviously … Ninh Ly, @NinhLyUK,


rainbowyoshi1239 · October 16, 2015 at 2:31 am

Another great video! Love the attention Toronto got as well.

Nicholas Garcia · November 3, 2015 at 9:45 pm

Okay, so from this video, the personalized Blue Jays jersey I have is a replica. And I'm just fine with that (it was a gift, after all!).

burque on SoundCloud · November 4, 2015 at 5:33 pm

This might not be the best idea but can you do a top professional sport busts of all time… (If you don't know what a bust is- A player drafted very high in a pro draft and thinking to be a great player but turns out to be completely awful) but I'm sure you know what it means

Martin Roldan · November 20, 2015 at 3:12 am

A fellow Jays fan! And a fellow Canadian sports fan!

893160007 · November 21, 2015 at 5:47 am

Boo Toronto

Karol Bała · November 27, 2015 at 4:13 am

I know this guy who has a fake sens alternate and winter classic jersey. The fit is so bad, the big O is wrong, and the white one doesn't even have the friggin winter classic logo

Maxwell Wergin · December 24, 2015 at 9:04 pm

I've bought a few Chinese jerseys, and I sort of figured that the poor details were because they were factory rejects. Since these jerseys are made in china anyways, I figure that it's better (for my money, anyways) to get a jersey for 1/10th the price, and the only reason it may have been rejected is that the stitching is a bit off on one of the letters.

HIPPYdaHIPSTER productions · December 30, 2015 at 2:20 am

How could you not put NOSDOOM in?

Matt Wilkinson · January 11, 2016 at 7:14 pm

Are you from canada and is that why you support the bluye jays and so on

mil182 · January 13, 2016 at 5:31 pm

great video, always buy real! you get what you pay for!

ChronicallyFearless · January 19, 2016 at 4:21 am

Yeah Jays! 😉

R K · January 22, 2016 at 9:49 am

When are you making a new video?

Devin Darley · January 25, 2016 at 3:38 am

how come the teams or the league dont sue the companys for copyright or something like that?

Joe Ketchen · February 9, 2016 at 9:59 pm

Are you from Toronto? I'm a big Toronto sports fan, go Leafs!

Joe Ketchen · February 9, 2016 at 9:59 pm

What do you think about the new Maple Leafs logo?

NYRangers0623 · February 12, 2016 at 1:10 am

Why does it matter if it is fake it is still a jersey

NYRangers0623 · February 12, 2016 at 1:11 am

3:49 this guy was just traded to Ottawa 2 days ago

CanadAarrgghhhhhh! · February 16, 2016 at 8:33 am

Great Video Ninh. Hey, did ya hear the Argos didnt resign Chad Owens and he signed with the Ticats……bummer

Angel Films · February 20, 2016 at 8:58 pm

I'm all over the place, being a fan of the Denver Broncos in the NFL, a fan of the Toronto Raptors in the NBA, and the Washington Capitals in the NHL.
Why am I all over the place? I really, really do not know.
But anyways, great video. Thank you so much for this, because I don't mess around with fake jerseys. I do not want one at all. So, I'll probably go for a replica, or maybe if I can, an authentic.

Connor Reynolds · February 23, 2016 at 2:20 am

NHL jerseys are really easy to tell the differences. The material of the authentic is really different and they have the fight strap.

Bolt3456 · March 9, 2016 at 2:44 am

yeah man I'm a die hard blue jays fan, go to their games all the time, and the Chinese jerseys are so bad that they're hard to look at. They can't even get the logo right

Ginnette Santos · March 10, 2016 at 11:36 pm

Do you have any idea how to find a good hockey jersey in Aliexpress? ( I'm looking for Max pacioretty)

HomeTownFitteds · March 28, 2016 at 12:09 am

Great Video!! Keep it Authentic!

Joey Congi · March 28, 2016 at 10:56 pm

great video! I'm from Toronto and loved hiw u used all of the Toronto teams, lol

cammy1885 · April 18, 2016 at 11:27 pm

I got myself a near perfect Blackhawks fake jersey off Aliexpress, came from Chicago. All immaculately stitched and even had a fight strap!

3:00Miner · April 19, 2016 at 12:03 am

your a really big fan of toronto…… eh?

CGH 2905 · May 16, 2016 at 10:02 pm

Great video. Helped a lot

SUPA Goose · June 9, 2016 at 5:50 pm

i bought i chinese fake jersey of earl thomas III and they didnt even put the III at the end of Thomas

Sphanks · June 28, 2016 at 8:46 am

I almost bought a Derrick Rose jersey last year… rest in peace

🅱️ · June 28, 2016 at 2:37 pm

I ordered Chinese jersey for lynch and it was actually really good, even the tags were still on, looked like the guy worked at a jersey factory so he smuggled some out to make more money

Nic Lazzari · June 30, 2016 at 1:20 am

+Ninh Ly I bought a Tony Romo Jersey from the store for around $100. Everything on it looks neat and it has a tag that says "Engineered to the exact specifications of the National Football League." It may be a replica because of the price, but it seems very authentic to me, what do you think? Btw I love your videos, please keep making them.

Quis Owens · July 4, 2016 at 11:52 pm

where do you buy real jerseys

Juan Sol Badguy · September 6, 2016 at 10:37 am

EWBB??? WTF!!! 😕

Zbrock · October 4, 2016 at 11:01 pm

Star fucks… LOL IM DEAD 😂😂😂😂😂😂

Manuel Diaz, Jr. · October 21, 2016 at 4:30 am

I have a huge jersey collection (373) and I hate seeing people try to pass their fakes off as "real" jerseys. My advice to you if you don't care about the player on the back is wait until a player leaves or is cut/traded. You can get a replica for about half the cost. (I do it all the time when I go to games and usually spend about $40-$60 us.

Jonathan Weber · October 28, 2016 at 4:15 am

Good video
You should make a give away

JetFan92 · October 29, 2016 at 2:17 am

Are you Canadian Ninh Ly?

Adrian St5 · October 31, 2016 at 4:49 pm

Ninh please help me,is this a reputable seller?

Mr&Mrs Griego · December 30, 2016 at 8:00 pm

Great video….thanks for the info

Nick Paradies · January 2, 2017 at 3:56 am

Jays suck, Red Sox Nation all the way :p

Bruins Boy · January 26, 2017 at 4:23 pm

haha Shar!

Knob Gobbler · February 10, 2017 at 6:17 am

Most baseball Jerseys are like $120 USD, where are you getting the $200+ from?

soap · February 23, 2017 at 2:37 pm

I once found a fake Sharks jersey that was selling for around 15 dollars. I could obviously tell it was fake, but I still bought it so I could cut out the logo and shoulder patches and sew them on my leather jacket. I thought it was a good buy.

D Me · March 3, 2017 at 8:16 pm

I've been a 3-sports fan since the 60's, & have never spent a penny on a frickin' jersey. I'm a grown man – why would I wear another man's surnane name on my back? Those who do – and y'all should feel stupid – are just slaves to marketing.

Kerlo o · March 5, 2017 at 5:51 pm

if it looks close enough I'll take a non authentic jersey

Josh Puller · March 20, 2017 at 10:54 am

I buy replica most of the time

CanadAarrgghhhhhh! · March 27, 2017 at 2:11 pm

I'm watching this as i enjoy a cup of Star Fucks coffee

Anthony LaRocco · April 9, 2017 at 4:20 pm

who cares theyre cheap and look good

Andrew Giroux · April 14, 2017 at 2:11 am

I got an Eskimos one from that site a couple years ago, only difference was that the small cfl logo was a different shade of red , really good detail though

Add · April 21, 2017 at 7:45 am

ehh..I have a handful of Fake Chinese jerseys. When the price difference is 200+ who looks dumber.

Jeshua Tehillah · April 26, 2017 at 12:19 pm

Really Star*ucks!!?? chinese must improve their English spelling skills

3:00Miner · May 5, 2017 at 12:29 pm

lol a lawrie jersey! Bye Bye we got donaldson for basically free

Guillaume Koffy · July 11, 2017 at 10:54 pm

Why (honestly) jerseys are so expensive?

mastshke · July 28, 2017 at 12:46 am

buying fake jerseys means you support pirating and bootlegging. i now. know better and threw out mine. i was fooled and dumb.

Robert Lewis II · July 28, 2017 at 2:41 pm

Just picked a random video to comment on but DID YOU SEE LAST NIGHT'S CFL GAME?? That was EPIC

BUTTERBOY · August 11, 2017 at 3:13 pm

Ninh are the jerseys on worth the buy or no? Just wanted to know cuz I already bought one and am thinking about getting another

Izabela Pepdjonovic · September 14, 2017 at 7:23 pm

Where do u live Toronto?

RYAN BAIER · September 29, 2017 at 5:22 am

@Ninh Ly, I  just wanted to let you know that NFL quarterbacks often wear a red jersey during training camp/ practice denoting that they are a player to not make contact with. However, the NFL does not produce retail versions of these for fans, so unless you purchase the team issued version, it is for sure a fake. So that is why you saw a red Saints jersey.

Akilan · October 3, 2017 at 1:01 am

This guy must be Canadian lma

Patoren 3gou · October 20, 2017 at 10:58 pm

I normally stick to substitution jackets, T-shirts and Caps for my sports merchandise case those are a lot cheaper

Patoren 3gou · October 20, 2017 at 11:02 pm

You from Toronto?

Ben Mogensen · October 22, 2017 at 1:28 am

Wow I’m really impressed by how you converted that Chinese jersey into a sleeveless one. Good idea man👍. Keep up the good work!

Qasas · November 9, 2017 at 8:36 pm

Fan of Toronto much ? I mean I'm from Toronto. But JEEEEZ

Long Plays · November 13, 2017 at 3:07 am

'star fucks'

Global Hockey League · November 23, 2017 at 6:21 am

In terms of buying a fake jersey, I'd say no simply because there's a high chance it was made by kids in a sweatshop. Those kids, to my understanding, don't make a whole lot of money either and are practically slaves. That's why it's always better to buy the real thing. If you can't afford one brand new, try eBay. I've found a ton of replica and authentic hockey jerseys for a reasonable price. Granted they're blank with only the logos on them and are usually older jerseys, but they're totally worth the money in my opinion.

Charlie ND · January 20, 2018 at 5:38 am

I'm from Toronto, thanks for giving our teams so much screen time!

Robert Lewis II · March 20, 2018 at 12:54 am


kylem1112 · May 6, 2018 at 2:46 am

i'm kind of surprised at these prices. i went to the nfl shop(online) and I want to get a von miller jersey from the denver broncos and it's only 100$ plus S&H. and they say it's "authentic" is it REALLY authentic? or just a replica. because i'm kinda confused

kozylu07 · May 14, 2018 at 1:02 am

do you live in Toronto because your using a lot of Toronto teams as examples

Aramonde Hasashi · May 15, 2018 at 5:32 am

Like another person has said you can get official jerseys cheaper if it has a player that no longer plays for that team. Another way is if a new company starts making the jerseys, the older company's jerseys are usually cheaper. Reebok NHL jerseys are usually cheaper now that Addias is the new official maker.

Santino · June 3, 2018 at 11:54 am

Ahahaha love it..

ANormalMexican · June 7, 2018 at 12:46 pm

In 2:15 look at the bottom one

Matthew Waterton · June 13, 2018 at 10:08 pm

IDK about other sports, but their fake soccer jerseys are really nice!

Shoe Science Cleaning · June 27, 2018 at 2:47 am

I don’t mess with fakes

corn syrup · July 1, 2018 at 6:08 am

This is actually a really bad fake jersey. You can actually get really nice ones

GCRams2 · July 8, 2018 at 8:50 pm

I have 2 MLB Cardinals jerseys. Authenic(flex base). They are blank but i love them & yes they cost me over $200 but i rather have something real than a fake. U even have a few cheapy shirts from wal-mart/k-mart & you cab wear that to a game & work well.

waifu breaks · July 14, 2018 at 10:55 am

just buy a cap instead, way cheaper and it's still the real thing.

Coordinator · July 14, 2018 at 10:55 pm

And now I see some Chinese fakes being advertised 😂 LOL

Fastbreak 383 · July 31, 2018 at 10:07 am

Time to change the logo 😉

Steven Kmiecik · August 17, 2018 at 2:42 am

One thing I have noticed on the mlb replica jerseys is that they don't have player numbers on the front witch can be kinda noticeable on teams like the dodgers or White sox

miguel angel morales hernandez · August 19, 2018 at 7:31 am

I agree, you should support the team.
I agree, the prices are too damn high. I'm from a mid income country and I know the struggle of many fans to get the autentic jersey, I had been there.
There are many teams that desn't care and they will charge you a small fortune for an autentic jersey, therefore I can't blame the fans for getting a fake and cheaper jersey.
Great Video by the way.

Splitwave23 · August 25, 2018 at 6:21 am

I think you forgot the swingman jerseys

Matanumi · August 25, 2018 at 11:35 pm

execpt SOME fakes are getting so good you really have to look to be able to tell

Nike didn't make enough Croatia Jerseys because no one expects them to have a deep run in the world cup this year…. so supply and demand kicks in and…. the real ones made in Georgia go for an outrageous price…

I spotted some fakes and got one… holy shit is it good! best knockoff I've ever seen

Huskies19 · September 2, 2018 at 6:01 pm

I only buy authentic jerseys

C3_KiLE · September 11, 2018 at 6:04 pm

0:12 wait isnt that the pro shop at patriots place? Either he brought that Jersey in, its not fake, or gillette stadium is sellimg fake merch

Sam Federman · September 25, 2018 at 10:27 pm

Aaron hernandez, bad call

Russell Tangey · October 5, 2018 at 8:47 am

Who are the most trust worthy retailers?

Da C. · November 29, 2018 at 9:38 pm

Buy fake, buy on eBay.

Greg Schell · December 25, 2018 at 11:10 am

Blue jays are my favourite baseball team

Coordinator · February 14, 2019 at 1:14 am

Many people only use Chinese fakes just for the extremely low cost

Fastbreak 383 · March 19, 2019 at 10:58 am

Is it safe to say that ninh is the most Canadian person that isn't canadian?

Just look at 0:32

Fastbreak 383 · March 19, 2019 at 11:05 am

Lol on the Chinese jersey the tag that claims its authentic messed up on the mlb logo! There is no baseball

J. Nicolosi · March 28, 2019 at 8:43 am

Ah. That explains your CFL>NFL stance. Cool

sebasgutisala · April 21, 2019 at 8:01 pm

Star Fuck 2:12

Lisandro Arreola · May 1, 2019 at 1:04 am

I'm a brave's fan

Jordan Herkowski · June 1, 2019 at 12:43 pm

I wonder what the merchandise situation is for states that have more than one team for the same sport. Not when they play in the same city like Chicago or New York but like Ohio with the Cleveland Indians and Cincinnati Reds, do the stores in the northern half of Ohio carry Indians merchandise while the stores in the southern half of Ohio carry Reds merchandise or do all stores just carry both.

Hazztech · June 2, 2019 at 11:06 pm

I'mma just buy the fakes lol

Críostóir Mac Ghabhann · June 11, 2019 at 6:19 pm

Jesus Christ $160 for a sports jersey?, i thought spending $90 on Premier League top was bad enough.

Rusty Ralston · June 20, 2019 at 10:26 pm

My dad got an Authentic Orlando Apollos jersey for like, 75% off, as a High School graduation present. Thanks dad!

grapefruit · July 19, 2019 at 6:30 am

Do you like the jays?

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