Genuine versus Fake Rilakkuma Guide


My authentication guide has earned a lot of praise (and haters) and I want to take some time to remind you all that this guide is purely compiled from my personal observation, thoughts and experience.  Whilst I endeavour to keep the information up to date and correct, I make no representation or warranties of any kind about the completeness, accuracy and reliability contained on the guide.  Any reliance you place on such information is therefore strictly at your own risk.

Also, before you ask me for authentication advice, please read this post first:


When I wrote this guide, I felt that only Rilakkuma plushies made by San-X are considered “real/authentic” (as these are the only plushies I’d ever collect), but there are actually quite a few OTHER companies who have the licence to produce Rilakkuma goods (so in theory, these are not “fakes/counterfeits” since they are legally allowed to produce them). These usually look different from the official San-X goods. You can read more about it here.  My good friend – RilakkumaLifestyle was kind enough to put in time and effort to write that guide, so please make sure you visit her blog too!


(You can read the original post here)

Today I went to visit an asian store in Newmarket called Osia. I’ve previously noted from its display window a lot of Rilakkuma plushies.

The price for the plushies were reasonable ranging from $30 to $60NZD, but on closer inspection I realised they were all fakes! This is really sad. Just like Louis Vuitton (I’m a fan and collector of Louis Vuitton too ^-^) the world of Rilakkuma is brimming with fakes! In fact, I haven’t seen a shop in Auckland that sells authentic Rilakkuma products.

Here are some photos from Osia Judy and I managed to sneak in. Sorry for the poor quality – we didn’t want to get caught by the shopkeeper.

Fake rilakkuma – they look wrong, and are the wrong sizes for their series

All fakes

Fake limited Bonjour plush on the top. Wrong sizing, wrong scarf, wrong colours, wrong material. A picture of the authentic one shown on the bottom for comparison. Look at how big the Honeybee plush is on the right – so wrong.

Another place full of fakes is Ebay. Here are a few pictures demonstrating this –

Some fakes are very very OBVIOUS!

This design was never released by San-X. And Rilakkuma looks so wrong! And look at the tag – the Bonjour plush is not part of the 7th Happy Anniversary series! >.<

Some fakes are a bit more subtle

The fake dragon plushies look horrible! And look at their fake tags! The dragon series tag should not have the forest theme on it, nor should it have the icon for the Happy 7th Rainbow Anniversary! >.<

I reckon the worst of all is that all of these fakes are selling at the same or higher prices than the genuine ones! And all the sellers claim they are genuine San-x products. Little liars.

I myself was a victim of such fraud. My first Rilakkuma plushies were from an E-bay seller, I bought each for about $40NZD. They were both fakes from Korea.

My first Rilakkuma plushies – both fakes >.< so sad!

Most of the time it’s very easy to tell a fake from a genuine plushie – the fake ones are usually made from cheaper materials, look asymmetrical, look ‘off’ or feature a design/theme San-x has never released. But some, such as the ones in Osia, can be tricky to rattle out. I find with these, inspecting the tags and labels can be very helpful. I’ve compiled below a quick guide on distinguishing fake from genuine rilakkuma plushies.

Please click to enlarge

Please click to enlarge

They took me a while to do, I hope you’ve found them somewhat useful haha.


(You can read the original post here)

Here is a post update to my previous post A World of Fakes… where I discussed tips on how to distinguish genuine San-X Rilakkuma plushies from the fake ones.

I’ve received numerous positive feedbacks on my previous guide so I’m very happy Rilakkuma fans have found it useful!

Recently I received a pleasant email from one of my blogreaders requesting help on authenticating Rilakkuma plushies from an online Indonesian shop. The prices quoted are quite high – up to $650,000IDR = $89NZD = $72USD!

After looking at the shop’s product pictures, I realized I’ve forgotten to mention something glaringly obvious in my previous post!

Please click to enlarge

Hope you’ve found that tip useful. It makes it easy to spot a fake from far away! ^-^

78 replies »

  1. I have a question, are you able to tell me if my plush is real ? Because it’s very different from the one that San-x offers for their Year of The Tiger ones, yet it looks real.


  2. Hi this is not a authentic question but this is just about a question about fansub Rilakkuma. Is Fansub Rilakkuma official San-X Plush? Or do they work together to make the plush? Like Fansub do the design and tag then San-X do the plush.


  3. Hi, do you mean fansclub? Fansclub designs and releases arcade rilakkuma plushes every month, like the ones you see in the UFO catchers. These are not like the store plushes, which are designed and released by san-x once every 2-3 months. Hope that helps.


  4. I have a question – my Rilakkuma fits all the categories for the real Rilakkuma but instead of the Rilakkuma head on the ribbon tag on the leg, my Rilakkuma has a cherry ( and the sanx logo ) on the ribbon tag on the leg. Does that still mean my Rilakkuma is real?


  5. you totally need to check out this shop in bugis+ the rilas in the shop all match what you identified. looks pretty fake and all the faces out of shape. however i did see a shop in bugis junction that sells the authentic one according to you cause the staff still showed me their catalogue and the material of the rila is so obviously real!!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Where did you get the squirrel babies 😦
    My friend wanted them so badly, but the only ones i can find is from ebay (Korea, which I assume is fake, because the one with the cloak doesn’t even have a tail) and Kawaii Gift / Shop Kawaii (US store)
    Please respond if you can 😦


  7. I would also like to thank you for your work here, Mary. I bid on my first Rilakkuma BEFORE I had discovered your blog back in early August of this year. (I’ve only been acquainted with RIla and his friends since this past July). However, I was EXTREMELY lucky that the plush I bid on is, in fact, genuine. There were about 3 days left for the auction to close, and I came across some sort of article somewhere discussing counterfeits. That certainly made me panic. Further searching led me to your blog and these posts. Having this knowledge due to your posts, and being able to enlarge/zoom in on the photos of the listing I’d bid on helped me confirm that everything about him was genuine. This plush no longer had his card stock tag, however, his leg tag was legit! I only had to pay $31.00 USD upon winning the auction, including shipping. The information from this post continued to help me with determining if the few other plush purchases I have been able to afford since then were genuine, as well.

    Thank you again for this information. And thank you so much for sharing all of these gorgeous photos of your lovely collection! Take good care. :0)


    • I’m glad my blog has been of help to you! And I’m happy to hear that your Rilakkuma was a genuine one! It’s unbelievable and frustrating how many fakes there are online! I hope you get to meet your cutie soon! $31USD (incl shipping) is great for a genuine Rilakkuma plush – Rilakkuma is the ‘designer brand’ of the soft toy world – it’s crazy how expensive some of them are worth! I have seen several series selling for $1000USD! O.O

      Anyway, I hope you enjoy your Rilakkuma and that he brings a smile to your face every day :)) Take good care!!!


    • Hey, if I’m not mistaken, Rakuten is a Japanese e-commerce site featuring various sellers/businesses. I would say ‘generally’ they would be genuine, but I would still check the product pics/description carefully before buying and assuming everything sold is genuine.


  8. this very helped i got my first one from a friend tat just went to japan and while i was reading it my rilakkuma is authentic but is the tags always square want to know for future preference, hope u can answer.


    • Hi Daria, are you asking whether all tags on authentic plushes should be square? Most tags are, but there are exceptions. For example, for the sweets series the tags are shaped like cakes. Also, for the UFO ones, the tags are circular. So not all tags are square, but most are. Hope that helps.


  9. Great Site and help for all Rilakkuma fans. Do you mind if i link your site to our facebook and webshop and also a rilakkuma fanpage since we are selling Rilakkuma products and would like to share this site to make our fans are aware that many counterfeit products are spreading online nowadays . Especially on shops like ebay etc,



  10. Hi!! I love Rilakkuma so I really appreciate you share with us your knowledge. I hope you can help me with this.
    I bought a korilakkuma squirrel plush but on the tag it says “creative”. I already talk with the seller but she said that’s because it’s the corean version. Is that true?? If not, Is there any san-x site where it says about these fake plush???

    Thanks a lot for taking your time to read my question, even if you can’t answer me.

    Btw, doctor + rilakkuma = my dream come true ^^


    • Hello, yes, that is correct – there are HK and Korean versions, but I don’t collect those as they are not the official “Japanese” version even if they are producing the plushies legally. They look different from the original San-x ones – usually the quality is not as good. Hope that helps!


      • Thank you very much for your help, it was very useful!! Congratulations for your beautiful collection!! (‐^▽^‐)


  11. Hello, I find your blog helpful and I looked at my Rilakkuma things.
    Some of the real things is on it as well as the fake things(I hope I am just reading it wrong) I can’t tell Japanese characters from Korean Characters. Quite confusing.
    Everything from far and close do not look fake. I am scared my heart is pounding and I want to cry.. I hope mines are not fake I am very scared and worried. Because I always wanted a real one and my friend tried his best to buy me the real one so he got one from a Japanese store in Queens in Banzai and Morning Glory. I am so nervous I might get a heart attack Mines have a tag on his left leg and it hanging by a plastic ring like you said and he is the same fabric of the genuine ones shown above. also he so cute!! he do not looks fake one bit. it do not have the barcode on the front it also have a sticker with codes on it. And if it was fake what do people do to fix this problem.. I am so scared.. 😥


    • Hello, aww… Sounds like you are extremely concerned about your Rilakkuma being fake. I will try my best to help you. I don’t normally do this, but if you send me some photos of your Rilakkuma I might be able to tell whether it is fake or genuine. My email is And please try not to stress too much in the meantime, the fact your friend got it from Japan for you probably means it’s genuine 🙂


      • Thank you so much~!!! You are so sweet.
        Banzai is a Japanese store in Queens. And I know it have to be real if it is a Japanese store. I saw in there all hello kitty and all Rilakkuma and Korilakkuma in the store it had a lot of expensive plush there. Like 60$ and lower up to 11$ plus Tax. I was so happy to see that New York had this store and I finally get a chance to get my very first Rilakkuma plushy! But then I wanted to look up if this was exactly real just to be on the safe side. (I should of did it before but I was so happy about it when I found the store) I found it and I was so so so so sooo scared when I saw that you show some pictures that show Rilakkuma’s with the same look as the real Rilakkuma. Then the name tags. I looked at it and then it said and looked the ones you had displayed was a little different from mines. I am super extremely scared my heart is in my neck. I can’t hardly breath to be honest. I get very scared even for the smallest reasons. That is my biggest problem. hope my plush is not fake or i might need something to help my health. I hope nothing goes wrong with me. I hate that I get extremely excited for things like this uhhg. >.<''


  12. Tks! I haven’t seen this kind of site before and I’m always wondering whether my rilakkuma plush toy is authentic ’cause my mum recently went to japan & told me there were these kind of plushies there.So relieved!


  13. Thank you so much! Your information is very helpful for me, I just got some products from my friend, I can make sure that she bring the real one ❤


  14. Hi, I’ve read your post. I’m planning to buy a Rilakkuma now but the tag is punctured in the ear. I once saw a post where someone said it is a fake. But comparing to what you had posted, I think it’s genuine. I really dont know. Can you help me?


  15. Hi, what designs are with the ‘Rilakkuma meets honey’ tag? I’ve seen many plushies with tags like that, need to confirm their authencity with your help^^


    • Hi Crystal 🙂
      Here is a picture of what the tags should look like!

      Actually, you’ve just given me a good idea! To help Rilakkuma fans differentiate between fake vs authentic Rilakkumas, I could upload a gallery of Rilakkuma tags! ^-^ They are also very cute to look at!

      I’ll look into doing that some time 😛 all my Rilakkumas are in bags and have been strategically stacked for display so I’m a bit lazy in terms of taking them down/out of bags/take photos etc, but yes! good idea indeed!

      Anyway, hope that answers your question!


  16. Hi Mary, I’m interested in buying one of these Korilakkuma bears from this eBay seller here: May I ask if you could please tell me if these are real or fake? They look real to me because of the san-x but I’d really love it if you could confirm this for me. Thank you. 🙂


    • Fake. I can give lots of reasons… But if you had taken the time to read my guide, you’d see the most obvious wrong here is that the tags are attached to the ears (amongst not looking like Rilakkuma at all). Hope that helps!


  17. Hello, I was wondering what sizes the authentic rilakkuma’s come in and where you purchased yours.. I’m also wondering how you could tell the korrilakuma and rilakkuma ( the first two you baught as stated above ) were fake? Please reply! I am hoping to go to a store downtown Toronto called “Chinatown” and hopefully purchasing my first rilakkuma 🙂


  18. Hi,
    I am trying to find a rilakkuma iphone 4 case for the my sister, because shes been begging for about a year now.
    But when I’m searching on Amazon, I just don’t know which one to get. A lot of them are detachable, which I know are fake.
    I know this is late, but please can you help me?


  19. I have purchased a Rilakkuma plush from Ebay recently , I knew right away it was fake since it was 80 cm and cos t me only 40 USD , while it originally costs 75… but it had super amazing quality , not much different from the ones I saw back in Japan , maybe the color was slightly lighter but it looked authentic , I’d much rather save money when the one I purchased in Ebay is as good as San-x one :/ and saves so much money


  20. This is an awesome article! I was thinking of writing one for my online store but I couldnt have done it better than you. Would you mind if I referenced your article on my webstore?
    We sell authentic Rilakkuma products, and I agree with you that the quality is far superior.


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