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Victoria's Little Secret?

Posted by Jane Akre
Tuesday, November 11, 2008 11:19 AM EST
Category: Major Medical, Protecting Your Family
Tags: Toxic And Dangerous Substances, Formaldehyde, Cancer

Formaldehyde is found in some Victoria's Secret bras.



IMAGE SOURCE: Victoria’s Secret Web site


Victoria may have a little secret- formaldehyde.

Some women say they’ve experienced rashes, hives even permanent scarring from wearing the Secret Embrace Victoria’s Secret bras.

The bras are still on the shelves even though Victoria’s Secret says they have received complaints.

Roberta Ritter, 37, says it happened to her.

“I had the welts…very red, hot to the touch, extremely inflamed, blistery. It  itched profusely, I was utterly sick,” she tells ABC News about the Angels Secret Embrace and Very Sexy Extreme Me Push-Up bras. 

The long time Victoria’s Secret shopper filed a lawsuit against the company May 14th.

Others have asked to become part of a class action to receive compensation after seeking medical attention.

Some have even complained to the web site Medhelp.org medical chat forums.

“I too had an awful itchy splotchy red rash from the secret embrace bras.”

“Victoria’s Secret needs to know what their bras are doing to women.”

Injuryboard member Mike Ferrara reported last month that both China and Latin America are using formaldehyde and other chemicals in the processing of textiles that can cause skin irritation and other health problems.

Researchers from the Institute for Textile and Apparel Product Safety analyzed children’s clothing for formaldehyde and found between 86 to 136 parts per mission in three out of 11 items.

The Institute's director Dr. David Brookstein tells Fox News Philadelphia that "In the U.S. at this point in time there are no regulations concerning formaldehyde."  China does not allow clothing with the chemical to be sold in that country. Japan has set a limit at 75 parts per million.

Victoria's Secret told ABC News,   “We are story that a small number of people have had an issue and we want to help them determine the cause.”

"Customer safety and satisfaction are always our primary concerns and we take seriously any issues our customers may have with our products," the statement continued. 

Ritter’s law firm purchased some of the Secret Embrace bras and had them sent to a lab where they tested positive for formaldehyde.   Victoria’s Secret says it has strict quality controls and does not use formaldehyde in its bras.

Dawn Chmielewski, Roberta Ritter’s attorney from Cleveland, Ohio, says while the company doesn’t specify it in their manufacturing process, it’s ending up there.  “We can’t explain it but it was certainly there.”

Ritter’s bra has not been tested but her doctor has diagnosed her with an allergic reaction.  She says she doesn’t want this to happen to anyone else.

“It's woken me up big time and I want to wake people up that it could happen.”

Dozens of women are seeking compensation for medical bills following reactions to the Angel’s Secret Embrace and push-up bras. The case could be classified as a class action sometime in May 2009.  #


Anonymous User
Posted by Robin
Tuesday, November 11, 2008 3:54 PM EST

I too am experiencing redness, itching and bumps under my left breast. I find myself constantly itching that left side. I have 3 Victoria Secret bras, all the Angel brand and one specifically is the pink Secret Embrace. For the past 7 years I worked for a double board certified dermatologist and cosmetic surgeon in Seattle and I showed her the rashes which first appeared on my sides and ribs where the bra strap went around and snapped and on the inside of my upper left arm. It soon spread to my right forearm, under my left breast, waist and hips. She prescribed Triamcinolone Acetonide Cream and I have had several prescriptions of this filled. I have been able to get rid of the rashes in those areas but the one area that persists is under my left breast. I keep thinking it was due to being sweaty during my workouts and friction from my sports bra but now I am convinced that it is from my VS bra, since they are the only ones I wear, each and every day. I just put this cream on again last night since that is the best time to apply it as I am not wearing bras (thank goodness) at night when I'm home in comfy clothes. The cream keeps it from getting too flared up, but the itch is constant and does not go away. From my best recollection, it started late last year or very early this year and I would be able to tell for sure from getting my prescription records from my pharmacy. I am going to go buy new bras today from Macy's!

Anonymous User
Posted by Jay Moe
Wednesday, November 12, 2008 5:40 PM EST

I too have experienced the same type rashes all over my body. This began early this year and I too am on cream and eurcerin calming creme. Dove and body soaking in plain water. I have seen 2 dermatologists. Had blood tests. An allergist. No one has found a solution. Thank you for this information. I will follow suite by going to get new bras from Macys.Jay

Posted by Darren Wilson
Thursday, November 13, 2008 5:47 PM EST

A handful of InjuryBoard member attorneys and law firms have indicated they will review claims from women who have experienced severe reactions from the chemicals contained in these products. If you have experienced serious harm and would like to contact an InjuryBoard attorney to determine a course of action, visit https://ask.injuryboard.com and fill out the form.

Anonymous User
Posted by E. King
Sunday, November 16, 2008 6:47 PM EST

I have expereinced the same symptoms! I have the itching, buring and welts and didn't know why! I only wear VS and now I know why I'm experiencing all of this madness!

Anonymous User
Posted by C. Fletcher
Monday, November 17, 2008 1:02 AM EST

I fought an awful, itchy, under-the-girls rash all last summer. Cortizone cream (and not wearing my Body By Victoria bras) finally cleared it up. I didn't connect the rash with the bras--at least not consciously. However I did stop wearing them--thinking they made me sweaty or something. When I reintroduced them to my wardrobe, I noticed that they made me itchy. Figured it was just the dense fabric or something.

Anonymous User
Posted by John
Monday, November 17, 2008 11:40 AM EST

"Ritter’s law firm purchased some of the Secret Embrace bras and had them sent to a lab where they tested positive for formaldehyde. "

Then why won't they release those results to the public?

Anonymous User
Posted by Becky Temple
Wednesday, December 10, 2008 12:21 PM EST

I have Picture of the whelps and blisters I incurred from wearing one of the referenced bras. Although it is healing it is leaving a scar. I have the bra should it be tested

Comments for this article are closed.

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