I went in to the outlets today, and this is what I think about whether or not the merchandise is real. I really didn't see that many tags with red ink, nor signs stating what they were, as classic suggested. You really can't ask the people working there. They don't have a good concept of what their products are. They're trained just to greet you at the door, and to work the cash registers. I tried asking some of them, but they just told me that they really had no idea. I'd be suspicious of companies that sell at lots of different outlets. To me, it seems if we're really dealing with excess stock, and if they're doing their job correctly, they shouldn't have that much. There are several outlets in S. Cal. that are several hours away from each other. I would be wary of a company that has stores in all of these outlets. Look at Allen Edmonds outlet. There's only a few in the country, so you know these must be legitimate. Items are definitely marked up for the full retail price. You need to go shopping before you go to the outlets to get a more authentic view of the prices listed. If it has irregulars, and not a great selection, then its probably real. I don't trust the stores that had every possible size, style. Does anybody know what it means when they say it's a 'factory store.' Which is better, the Barney warehouse sale or the outlet. I didn't have that much time, it seemed to me they were the same.