Why Are Victoria's Secret Bras Causing Skin Rashes?

By Nina Bai | November 12, 2008 3:01 pm

braIn a new class action lawsuit, dozens of women are claiming that Victoria’s Secret bras have given them painful, unsightly rashes. One of the plaintiffs, Roberta Ritter of Ohio, says the company’s “Angels Secret Embrace” and “Very Sexy Extreme Me Push-Up” bras gave her persistent itchy rashes that caused severe discomfort. When Ritter’s lawyers purchased the same bra types and sent them to a lab, she claims, they tested positive for formaldehyde.

Formaldehyde is considered a probable human carcinogen by the EPA and is also a known allergen. Though people often associate the chemical with embalmed specimens in jars, it is actually found in many everyday products.

“Formaldehyde is the big thing these days,” says dermatologist Susan Tillman Elliott, consulting physician to the Center for Laser Surgery in Washington D.C. “It’s been known for a zillion years that it’s the major component of most fabric finishers. It’s a major contact allergen.” Formaldehyde is often used in fabrics for permanent press, anti-cling, anti-static, anti-wrinkle, and waterproof finishes. It’s also found in cosmetics, medications, household cleaners, paints, and cigarette smoke.

Rashes caused by formaldehyde in clothing usually occur in high friction areas like the inner thighs (“trouser dermatitis”) and could very likely appear underneath the tight underwire of bras. Formaldehyde allergies can be confirmed by a patch test. Elliott says the chemical is usually removed from clothing after a few washings

Victoria’s Secret has stated that they do not use formaldehyde in their bras. Some countries have banned the use of formaldehyde in textiles, but it is still legal in the U.S.

Granted, there are other ways bras could cause a rash, from underwire irritation to a condition known as Rubber Accelerator Bleach Syndrome, suggests Elliot. Rubber accelerators are chemicals used in the manufacturing of rubber, and many people, such as surgeons and nurses who wear rubber gloves, can develop an allergy from frequent exposure. Washing the rubber products only makes the reaction worse: “If you wash rubber-containing things with any kind of bleach, you change the component of the rubber,” says Elliott. “Folks can use the underwear fine at first, and then they wash it and the chemical change happens.”

Despite the complaints and threatened legal action, Victoria’s Secret is still keeping the bras on its shelves. Maybe they’ll finally start paying attention after Heidi Klum gets a rash—or maybe they’ll just airbrush it out.

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Image: flickr / angel with horns

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  • http://DISCOVERMAGAZINE Nehy Reyes

    Hi my name is Nehy Reyes and i have the same rash and itch problem and the problem started right after i bought my last bra “ANGEL” by Victoria Secret and is giving me a bad skin rash too, i have no idea why i got this rash until i read and listen on the news that other women had the same problem as i.
    Nehy Reyes

  • http://www.ladolceyvito.com Irma Bustos

    I have been suffering from severe rashes caused by Victoria Secret bras. I suspected there was something in the fabric. Keep me posted on the class action suite.

  • Gwen Campbell

    I am also suffering from the severe rash caused by the Very Sexy Bra Line. I would like to me notified about the class action suite. My daughter bought this bra as a gift, she paid $60 for it.

  • fed up jones

    I don’t understand some thoughts that run through everyones mind, I get it every one is money hungry and that is a way of life. Secret Embrace has been out for maybe two years and all of a sudden you start itching. Why not two years ago when the bra came out, why now, when the economy gets bad. OOhh you need a cash cow, no savings. I know what I am allergic to and what I am not allergic to. I used a soap that smelled really good, felt soft when I put it on suppose to be good for your skin and it broke me out. Shit happens and I am smart enough to stop using the soap. I met someone who told me they had a rash under their arms(armpits) from a bra. Stupid is what I wanted to call her, why is her bra under her arm and not on her boobs.

  • Sheri

    I also have had this issue for over two years…been to doctors and dermotalogists. My doctor gave me powder to try and relieve. Didn’t work, went to a dermotalogist over a year ago who told me to stand in front of a fan before dressing. Recently went to a new dermotalogists and we are trying something else. On next visit I plan to take this article. I am going to buy some new bras. All I have is VS bras and a fortune in them.

  • Emily

    To the Fed up Jones lady, I actually did have this rash about 1 1/2 -2yrs ago, and saw my doctor twice for it and also had other tests scheduled, until I stopped wearing this bra, now I never thought anything about it, and therefore had never known that it was happening to other people, I am not looking to sue like some people, but these people do deserve to at least be reimbursed for missed work and doctor’s appointments!! I am glad to know that something is being done, even it V.S. didn’t know about something wrong in the fabric. My rash was everywhere my bra sat, including on my back!!

  • Megan

    I’m having the same problem! Over the past few weeks one of my nipples became red, swollen, itchy & painful in spots. When I started self-medicating with Neosporin & covering the area with a bandaid, the area begin to get better; without the bandaid the flare up begins again. I only buy my bras from Victoria’s Secret & the 2 being complained about have become my favorites, so I wear them more than my others. I went to my doctor yesterday & she is having me try some steroid cream for “dermatitis” to see if it takes care of the problem.
    I would love to know how to become part of this lawsuit if it ever makes it that far. I don’t feel like rubbing cream on my breasts 3 times a day for the rest of my life or wearing a bandaid to cover my nipples inside my bra, just because I choose to wear Victoria’s Secret. Their bras are the best, but the least they could do is pull these off the shelves or reformulate the fabric!!1

  • Terri

    I’ve also had an itchy rash past year since bought Barely There bras from J. C. Penney, and have seen Dr. for and got different ointments to try. Since seeing about Victoria Secret Bras, have quit wearing those bras (all same style, made in Indonesia). My rash is greatly improving since quit wearing those bras. Shame, because I really liked them otherwise. Any long term affects possible from this?

  • http://www.itchyskinrash.net Skin Rash Info

    I think the rubber accelerator point is interesting because people wash bras with bleach often. I am surprised that US hasn’t banned formaldehyde in clothing since other countries have given that it’s both a carcinogen as well as a cause for allergic contact dermatitis.

    Skin Rash Info

  • Theresa

    I also bought a bra from Victoria’s Secret #o8385732 BBV Padded UW. I purchased the bra at Chapel Hill Mall in Colorado Springs. I broke out into a rash on my back and shoulders.Cannot get rid of it. I’ve had it for about a month now.If theres anything I need to do keep me informed;with the law-suit. Thank you! When I returned the bra I had no problem they gave me my $48.33 back no problem;no hassle. It was amazing no one was aware of the rash. The manager said I am the only one that returned the bra. My husband happened to see this on abc news.

  • Lyndz

    I have been experiencing painful rashes towards the front of my armpit. Well I always wear this certain bra from victoria secret. so i stopped wearing it for a couple weeks and wore just my other bras which some were VS bras as well and the rash cleared up. So I thought it was ajust a coincidence so i put the bra on again…i got the rash once more in the same spot. It only happens with this one VS bra..none of the others i have fron there bother me just that one

  • Sally McEntire

    I feel vindicated hearing about other women having the same/similar problems. I have been suffering from a ugly rash under my right breast for 1 1/2 yrs. I have seen doctors who recommend I make sure my skin is dry after showering and use Neosporin, etc. before I put on my bra. I have a considerable investment in Vicotria Secret bras. I have 4 Angel bras, 2 Embrase, 1 Very Sexy, 10 IPEX bras. I would like to know how to get involved with the lawsuit.

  • Jane Brummitt

    I have worn VS bras for many years but I bought several new bras in April 2008. In May, I started to experience a rash that was concentrated around the bra area but also had expanded to various other parts of my body. I went to several doctors only to be put on different medications and creams. The meds would help but it had many other side effects so I started with a dermatologist and an allergist. Medications changed but nothing really made it go away. It has been extremely uncomfortable and embarrassing at times because of the itchiness. Not to mention a woman doesn’t look very sexy with red, blotchy sometimes scabby breasts. It was great to hear this story.

  • mmittles

    This is to “Fed Up Jones.”
    I am sorry that you are so disgusted with people being money hungry…but, we that have a rash, have a legitimate complaint. Here’s my story:

    I developed dime-sized lesions on my breasts and traveling around my back. The burning and itching was so terrible, I could barely stand it. After figuring out it was in the exact shape of my bra, I stopped wearing it. Then I decided to contact the Victoria’s Secret company myself. I wanted them to warn others of this possible reaction.
    After a few days, several reps from VS called me and took my info. They requested I send the bra to them for testing. I thought better than just handing it over for them to possibly destroy it. Then the claims specialist informed me that it was my skin’s fault and none of their own. Later, after some digging of my own, I see that this has been brought to their attention, on several occasions.
    I gave them every opportunity to right the wrong. They saw fit to blame the victim. Am I wrong to want them to own up and stop the sale of this harmful product?
    I believe that the only way they are actually going to listen, is if we speak as loud as we can, collectively.
    And, I am not rid of the disgusting scarring on my breasts and around my torso…they need to understand that this is not acceptable for me to have to live like this for the rest of my life…through no fault of my own.

  • Gwen Dorine

    I have had problems with lesions on my breast for about a year. I like so many others did not know what to think or what to do. I was wearing a mixture of brand name bras so I did not think of the bra as being the culprit. I first thought of my skin care, then of my deodorant, than my laundry detergent and on and on. It was insane. I had 2 nickel size boils on my breast most of the time and would often have fever on them. I use natural products so I was putting witch hazel, non talc powder, and washing with unscented all natural soap. This would help to clear the problem but as soon as I would get rid of one spot another would appear. I thought that maybe that the laundry detergent had gotten stuck in the fabric of the bras so I went out and bought several fruit of the loom bras and hand washed them in natural soap. the lesions started clearing – after about a month they were all gone. I can not tell you of the problems this caused but I will abbreviate. My mother in law has Alzheimer’s and we were trying to get her help, we were going through a business restructure, my youngest was leaving home and all I could think about was the pain of these boil on both of my breast. Now very interesting I was wearing several different bras by VS body by Victoria being the newest. So after this story broke I took all of VS bras and put them in a bag and stored them as I am extremely angry if they knew about this and did not warn the public. Well I missed one (must have been in the laundry with other hand washables) and accidentally wore it and when I took it off guess what…..big boil on my breast. I am getting photos of the scars and the new boil and sending it to VS. I have spent a fortune on their crapy product and they should pay me back. What is so infuriating is the denial. Women will keep wearing this bra. They should be getting a group together to find the problem and doing something about it. In this crazy world it doesn’t take much to ruin an effort someone is making to do a certain job or better themselves. Large boils that have fever on your breast thinking you may have cancer or some other horrible problem is certainly one of the things that can change the path of your life in hard times.

  • Cdagirl

    The other thing that can be causing the rash is the actual metal underwire in the bra. This has specifically happened to me and other women. So, at this point I am taking the wire underwires out and replacing them with plastic underwire; which by the way, are very very hard to find. I finally found an internet source in Canada called “Bra-makers Supply.”

    The problem with the metal underwires is that even though they are covered by fabric the metal alloy will still leach when we sweat. Plus, there is the problem that the metal alloy is also being absorbed into the body. Nowadays as we have seen, most of our clothing is manufactured in China or items that go into the clothing and the regulations are not the same there. So, who knows what is actually in the metal?! That coupled with the formaldehyde and any other chemicals creates a very real toxic environment for our bodies. Not good!

    I hope this information can help some others, since I was just perplexed as to the reactions I was getting.

  • http://www.laboutiquedelingerie.com Valerie Lammon

    I own a Bra Fitting boutique in Melbourne, Florida. http://laboutiquedelingerie.com. We carry Anita Bras made in Germany. They are Formaldehyde free. Please read the excerpt from thier website.

    Anita Bras

    Anita Dr. Helbig GmbH is a German firm founded by Ernst Max Helbig in 1886, who is the great grandfather of the present proprietor Georg Weber-Unger. Anita is noted for the manufacturing of exquisite women’s lingerie, swimwear, maternity garments, and nursing bras. A specialist supplier of foundation garments, swimwear and accessories, is a growing company with a workforce of approx. 1,150 world-wide and an annual turnover of approx. 65 million euros. Its own production sites are located in Germany, Austria, Portugal, the Czech Republic and Far East. For women who are concerned about skin irritants, or who experience chemical sensitivities, this brand will answer their needs for beautiful and irritant-free lingerie, from the thread through to the lace.

    The company places great emphasis on ecological considerations so that customers can enjoy the Anita products without concerns. Particular attention is shown to constructing products from fabrics that are irritant-free. Products with a pH-value which correspond to that of skin have been awarded the seal of the International Association for Research and Testing in the field of Textile Ecology (Oeko-Tex), Standard 100. These ecologically sound clothing products are free from carcinogenic dyes, azo dyes, and allergenic dyes; pesticides and chlorated phenols; formaldehyde; heavy metals; organic chlorine compounds and biocides. Anita brings purity of product in an eco-friendly way!

    Why would you wear a bra with harmful chemicals in it when there are ones made that do not contain them?

    Thank you,

    Valerie Lammon

  • maureen

    I too had this rash-noticed it a few months ago and thought that I had shingles.(Based on the symptoms that i heard of shingles, ie itchy, burning, red area under both breasts) my friend who had shingles looked at it and said that it is not shingles. that very night I saw pictures onCNN about the rash from VS Bras. I had 10 of the body by victoria full coverage uplift and realized that every time I wore one I got the rash and it looked the same. I contacted VS in Orlando and they advised me to bring them back and they gave me a full cash refund for the bras even though I had them a while and i had no receipt. I did keep 2 to have tested for the chemical substance. Dr. said that it is basically a chemical burn type reaction. Keep me posted.
    thank you

  • michle

    I agree with fed up jones . really, lets sue everyone. My kids are fruitous and lactose intolerant. I think I should sue the milk and friut companies because their product would make my teens sick. Better yet, I am allergic to animals maybe they should all be put down. What about enviromental? Pollen and rag weed cause people severe reactions. Lets burn down the woods? Where do you people stop. Get a life, the bra bothers you, stop wearing the darn thing? At least you can avoid what ails you. Alot of people with REAL health problems cant

  • Lacy

    I just heard from my friend about this lawsuit. I too have had a rash since the summer, I have went to the dermtologist, an allergist and they didn’t know what it was and have tried to treat it. I also had a rash for years on my inner thighs, went to several doctors and basically just have to live with it. I buy nothing but VS bras but will stop and throw out all the money I have spent!

  • AJ

    This is really crazy…I too have developed a rash, where the rubber on the sides, contacts my skin. The rash has become very uncomfortable and I can only experience relief by not wearing the bra, washing the area with Cetaphil anti-bacterial soap, and cocoa butter lotion to soothe and return skin to normal! How is this? I love Vicky’s and hope that they make whatever necessary changes soon, as I would hate to discontinue purchasing from them. We’ll see…!

  • Noelle

    This is insane! I bought my first bra from Victoria’s Secret the other day…The very sexy push up waS recommended…so I bought it and after the first day I wore it i had a rash on my shoulders from where the straps were. So I switched to the clear plastic straps the next day to see if it made a difference…and they too gave me a rash on my shoulers! It’s very painful. I already took the tags off…but I’m going to bring it back with my receipt and complained…and show them my shoulders!

  • Em

    I am so glad I found this, I thought I was going crazy! I have several colors of the very sexy and angels bras. A couple of months ago, one of my nipples got so swollen and red that the skin around it cracked and I spent 2 months trying to heal it with Neosporin! I thought I had breast cancer or something because a friend told me that could be one of the symptoms but my doctor said I was fine. I’m definitely going to have to buy some new bras but it’s upsetting because VS bras are around $50 and I have a ton of them!

  • Sue

    I have just submitted a complaint to Chico’s telling them of these exact symptoms, my bras were made in China. I bought 6 of them, only wearing 3 to date. I have never had a rash before, my skin is not sensitive to anything and was baffled. I happened to be getting a facial and happened to mention it to the girl. She had the same experience with the VS bras!! And knows of 4 other cases.

    So BEWARE!!!

    And….isn’t nice to be able to share this information. I am not looking for money, just a reason, and to be able to return the unwanted bras. And….Chico told me to return all and I will get my money back.

    I will be calling my doctor’s office tomorrow, hoping to get the hydrocortizone cream I will need to clear it up.

  • Shantelle

    I too have had this experience. I bought a DKNY bra about 6 months ago at a Macy’s Department store in here in Florida. After the first wearing, this painful and itchy red rash developed under both breasts only took about 15 min of wearing. Concerned, I washed the bra a couple times before trying to wear again. After several washes I attempted to wear the under garment and uncomfortably had the same results. I had no idea others were having this same problem. I would also like to know how to get involved with the lawsuit.

  • krysta margiotta

    I have 2 differant victoria sectret bra’s and could never figure out what was wrong with my breast. at one point I contacted my plastic surgent thinking I had leaking implants and maybe that was causing the pain. I have blisters that look like I have been sitting in the sun for hours! do not buy these bra’s!!!

  • Jessikah

    In the last few months I’ve been very irritated around my breasts, at first I thought it was my medication, or even me gaining more weight, just recently I heard over the news of the lawsuit, that when I put two ands two together and realized all the bra I have are from Victoria Secert and especially my two new one have been causing this awful irritations around the bottom part of my breast, they are red, itchy, have some hives and have left horrible scaring and the doctors cant prescribe anything. *tears* it’s really upsetting cause these BRA are made for women to be and feel sexy and sexy is far from what I feel.

  • jassica

    it is not due the victoria bars, I think it is due to some other factors

  • DiDi Groos

    I suffer from very serious allergies, environmental AND foods. The list of my serious allergies is way too long to list, suffice to say I carry epi’s with me at all times. I cannot use any lotion or body wash on my skin. If a baby drools on my skin after drinking formula/nursing, I get a rash. I cannot wear any form of wool, mohair, etc., or I will get a rash. I cannot take TYLENOL, because it contains corn, and will make me very ill… and the list goes on and on. The point to this is that I KNOW if something breaks me out/causes any form of reaction I should not use/ingest/wear that certain something again. Interestingly enough, I DO wear Victoria’s secret bras. Also interestingly enough, I have never suffered a rash or any other reaction from the materials used in these bras. After purchasing, I immediately wash and rinse several times BEFORE wearing. I then wash all of my bras weekly, just to be careful. If, at any time I were to consistently break out after wearing one of my Victoria’s Secret bras, being sure I wasn’t reacting to a chemical in laundry detergent, etc, I would make the choice to NOT WEAR THAT PARTICULAR BRA EVER AGAIN. No matter how pretty it was, or how much it was liked. Would I take it back? Definitely. And exchange it for something different. I would NOT, however, sue the company because I happened to have an allergic reaction to the product, any more than I would sue any other company for using corn as a filler in their products. It isn’t THEIR fault I happen to be severely allergic to corn, now is it? It’s called reality: some people have allergies, to one degree or another. If the allergens are avoided when discovered, life is much simpler. Screaming ‘lawsuit!’ because you can’t wear a certain Victoria’s Secret bra shows a serious lack of common sense. And greed, come to think of it. Oh, and by the way… the company who makes tylenol isn’t likely to reimburse me for medical bills I acrue after using their product, either:)

  • GunGirl

    This is Crazy, for the past month I have been telling my fiance how incredibly itchy i am all the time on my chest , back,shoulders and underarms. For me it is just mild redness/rash and constant itching wich usually ends in me striping out of my shirt and bra for the rest of the evening and frantically smearing lotion on my skin in an attempt to ease the annoyance. I was thinking it was maby dry winter skin (though it has never been a problem before) so we bought a humidifier but it didnt help, i thought stress, or maby even my laundry soap or shower soap had soured, anyways threw it all out bought new but still itching. Ironically I got 8 new bras from victorias secret at christmas (very sexy, same brand and style i have worn for years now with no problems) I will have to go back to my old ones and see if the itching stops. Also just a note, the sales clerk told me that you can NOT wash their bras in the washing machine not even on the delicate or gentle cycle, she said it will cause them to tear (i had one tear in the center and asked her if it was a problem they were seeing and she proceded to tell me the ONLY way it would tear is from the washing machine (funny though i have always hand washed mine) I smiled and walked away knowing she was wrong and purchased 3 more of my favorite bras. I dont understand why for the past 4-5 years i have had no problems with those bras and all of the sudden it seems possible they may be the culprit. Maby the chemical is a problem with certian lots or runs and not all of them. Regardless my problem with the whole thing is VS not stepping up and taking responsibility for a problem that they are aware of that seems to be fairly wide spread. Nothing and noone is going to be perfect but they should do the right thing even if its just on a individule basis, instead of blame shifting. Recall the lots affected just like they did the peanut butter. lord knows at 50.00 bucks a bra and as many as we all purchase you would think they would like to keep a good reputation and client base. Seems like they would rather find an excuse to make it our fault than even entertain the notion that that it might be a defect. Not looking to sue over it just hoping they at least make an attempt to do the right thing with my $550.00 worth of bras purchased over a 3 week period. I alone spend 7 to 8 thousand a year on bras, suits, shoes, ect from Victorias Secret and hope they choose a more proactive approach to future issues or I will be taking my business elsewhere.

  • kris

    Does anyone know how to get on board with the class action suit? All I wear is these bras and have two major rashes under both arms. Ironically, I purchased the bras at Macy’s because the gal at Macy’s said they were exact same manufacturer as the same bra at V.S.

  • http://maria19721971@hotmail.com maria

    I had use victoria secret bra for the last 2 or 3 years. i feel very comfortable with it. I had severe rashes but i never thought that is was the bra. nothing major. i just take some benadryl. I always wash the clothes that i buy before wearing it. I sspend a lot of money at Victoria Secret. I buy make-up,bra,panties,pijamas. I just hope the that victoria secret they choose a more proactive approach to future issues.

  • denise

    To all of the people who feel this is a rediculous lawsuit I would like you to walk one day in my shoes. I never owned a victoria secret bra unti 2007. I treated myself to 2 very expensive bras that have now dis -figured me for life. I can no longer wear a shirt that may show a little cleavage because the scarring from the rash has now traveled towards my neck. I can no longer wear a bathingsuit in the summer because i look like i have skin disease. I was told by my doctor that this will never reverse and for the rest of my life i will suffer flareups. Its a fungis she said. Athletes foot is a fungis how would you like that on your breasts? Lets see I have been wearing bras since i was 12 and never had this issue. I am not allergic to many things at all but you better believe being exposed to any degree of poison can hurt you. Basically I was being poisoned slowly over the course of two years.I never had asthma but all of a sudden I couldnt breathe and needed to rely on an inhaler. I kept thinking it was the soap i was using or maybe dry skin or maybe nerves or stress. Talk about affecting your sex life the thought of my husband touching my breasts was painful. I would lay on my bed crying from the burning that the slightest touch of my tee shirt would create so much pain. So to all the negative people out there who think I am wrong for holding this company accountable close your mouths because i would not wish this upon anyone but i may want to wish it upon you. And furthermore to all the people out there who feel this is an attempt at gaining some sort of restitution wake up! its a class action suit. What do I stand to get $5 or $10 a month if that. Or maybe even nothing at all. The only gain I definately will recieve is living like this for the rest of my life.

  • Genean Lanham

    If a shoe was crippling people you would expect the maker to be responsible. Why is it any different with a bra? I have had breathing issue and heart palpitations. I have been told that rashes are “normal” with heavy breasts. I never had any rashes like this before I wore the bras, and my breast are actually smaller than they used to be. Yes it does ruin your sex life to have a stinky rash, but it has also effected my work. I have been too sick to work and often my husband has taken time off to take care of me. I have never had allergic reactions to any clothing. Yes, I do wash everything before it is worn. I have 2 daughters and a sister that wore the bras and had no reaction. They have thrown their Victoria Secret bras away and will no longer shop there. I have 8 of the bras @ $44 or more each, at the VERY least I expect to be reimbursed and I will never buy another one of their products or gift cards.

  • Darelyn

    I have been wearing VS bras for years. I bought a new style. It had lace. I thought the iching I experenced was from the lace. WRONG! I just bought a new Body by Victoria like I had in the past and Yep, a rash. I talked to a manager at the store and she said bring it back but never heard of any problems. I have made copies of this site for her. I hope they do not continue to be in denial. I don’t want a lawsuit. I just want my good old bras back. I loved them.

  • Lori

    I have had the same problem with a “barely there” bra (made in thailand) which was purchased at a Kohl’s department store. Wore it and washed it quite a few times but then used a different detergent (bleach alternative) and the rash began. The rash caused hive-like welts in the shape of my bra and insane itchiness which would subside after about 3 days. Tried soaking overnight in water and used dreft for babies to launder 3 more times before wearing. No good – rash again. Was going to throw bra out but decided to look online and relieved to find this site. I do believe its the formaldehyde issue and am not surprised that it isn’t banned in textiles in the US and god knows what other countries are using in textile manufacturing. Not interested in a lawsuit – just want to pass the word – perhaps forward this to some broadcasting companies,local and national, to get the word out.

  • Marjorie

    OH MY GOD………..Thats all i have to say…. I thought it was just me. Right now i just search alergy/bra and saw this. I am really upset. I have spent over $500 in VS stuff. Now alllllllll my bras are VS. I HAVE A SEVERE PAIN/RASH/ITCH almost looks like a burnt thats how bad it is. I am really upset. I would like to sue, any suggestion. I am willing to take pics its right under my breasts on both sides. No wonder.

  • mary


  • mary


  • Cara

    I have had the same problem with a “Champion” sports bra (made in USA) which was purchased at a Costco store. Wore it and washed it quite a few times but i never put two and two together until I heard about this on the news. I get hives and rash when I wear this bra but also some others in my relatively new collection of bras. I recently had breast reduction surgery and assumed I was having some post surgical reaction (except that it is three months later and the reactions only started after I started going back to work and wearing my new bras. The sports bras (Champion) were really comfortable but I keep breaking out in hives. I tested it by putting one on for an hour when I had no hives for awhile and sure enough after an hour in the bra I was breaking out again!

  • Marion Lindsay

    I purchased 2 Victoria’s secret bras recently,both made in China. I developed a very itchy red rash on both sides of my breasts right after first wearing them. The rash then spread to my underarms, and then I developed raised hives on my forearms, and red itchy spots all over my back, behind my knees, and on my stomach.

    I researched on the net re: hives, which I have never had in my life before. I found the articles re: VS bras and formaldehyde in them causing rashes.
    I went to the doctor today and she said it is possible for the rash to spread to other parts of the body, when it started on the breasts from an allergic reaction.
    I have also had chest congestion and chest tightness along with the rash.
    I sniffed the bras, and the one bra in particular which is the one I have mostly been wearing (Till Now), smelled strongly of chemicals.
    I think they should pull these bras from the shelf immediately and not sell any products made in China with formaldehyde, a known carinogern (known to cause cancer) and known allergen.
    Unhappy Victoria’s Secret Customer,

  • Corine , tampa, fl

    I cant believe it i have had the same rash recurring on my right shoulder went to the doctor and we have been trying several creams to cure it. Mu cousin told me about the several complaints about the victoria secret bras and i did not believe it, until y boyfriend insisted . The rash is ugly and painful and the ost embrassing thing is it leaves a ugly mark that seems to be permanent. i love victoria but if everyone wearing those bras are coming up with the sae systems, the bras should be discontinue.d

  • kris

    I cannot believe I have not heard about this. I have been suffering for about a year and a half. A co worker told me she had a biopsy it was so bad. I teach and am around a bunch of kids , I though I may have picked up some sort of virus. The conversation came up as I took a child to the clinic with possible ringworm. I had gone on spring break and lived in my swimsuit most of the week. I came home and put on a clean VS bra and bam!
    What recourse do we have?

  • Susie

    I purchased a few Bareley There bras from JC Penny and instantly had the rash. i have never had a rash like this and had several Barely There bras I had already been wearing for a while. As soon as I bought the new ones, the rash was there. It has to be made of something different than from the last time I purchased the same bras. Cortizone cream works but only if I put it on every day and do not wear the bras. In fact, now i can’t wear any bra without the rash flaring up.

  • Joyce

    I also have had a rash on my breast for the last three months. It never occurred to me that it was my VS bra. That is all I wear. Please let me know if there is any compensation as I will be out right away getting new ones. Thank God for the news.

  • Colleen

    I bought 3 bras from VS a week ago, and wore one yesterday. Last night I had a huge rash all over my chest and stomach. I couldn’t figure out what it was … until I googled and found all this. I’m going to return all 3 today, and they BETTER let me, even though I only have tags for one. I’m not putting up with this crap. I’m getting married next month and I’m jsut happy I didn’t put one on for the first time on my wedding day like I was planning!!!

  • Afua Stingley

    I’m having the same problem, OMG, I almost thought I had shingles, but the symptoms for that are severe and painful, mine is just a itchy patch along my bra line on my side. I got my bras from Lane Bryant. When I was at VS, they advised me to check at Lane Bryant for want I wanted in larger size, she said the Cacique is VS. Yeah, mine looks like a curling iron burn, it just itches. I just spent like $90 purchasing 3 bras, now I have to where an old bra that doesn’t have any wire cause I’m irritated. This article and your blogs were very comforting in the view that it’s not something as bad a shingles and it’s not just me with this problem.

  • http://google colleen schreiber

    I was diagnosed with brca 1, I had a double masectomy in Sept 08. After a few of my surgeries, my husband I went “Bra shopping” at the end of December. After wearing my new VS bra’s I broke out in a horrific rash, they looked like open sores all over my chest. The sores burned and itched terribly. This was a major set back for me. It affected my healing process. I, like everyone else, was unaware of the the problems everyone was having with the VS bra’s until I read it in the news paper. I bought 6 new bra’s and still have the receipt.


    I want to know what the bra purchased at Lane Bryant with the tag name of CACIQUE Made In China made of to give me such a terrible reaction – red, itching, burning reaction. I have worn this brand prior with no problem. I wore the bra Friday and this is the following Tuesday and since reading what other’s wrote I took pictures of my reaction for documentation.

  • Gina, Easton PA

    OMG….I can not believe what I am reading! I have been going crazy for the last week with a rash on my chest and constant itching!! I bought 2 Victoria Secret’s bras about a month ago…that has to be it!?! I don’t know why it took a month for me to have a reaction…but it did! I can’t believe there are this many complaints and…there is NOTHING we can do??? I have been wearing VS bras for years but these 2 new ones MUST be different!


    I saw this information on TV last fall. I have quite a few bumps under my right breast for the past few months. They inflame after the 2nd time I would wear a dark color bra, not a white one. It doesnt matter if I sweat or not, it still inflames. All of my bras are from VS and I love them. But due to this issue, I’ll have to go back to good old playtex. I have paid a fortune on all of my bra’s since I am a 38DD.

  • Saarah

    Ok. I have not had this problem on my breats but on my va-jay jay. Every pair of underwear I have are victoria secret. I also wear the pj pants and I have rash all over my legs. I have been dealing with these rashes for almost a year. I have tried everything and couldn’t figure out what the hell was wrong with me!!! I have spent so much money on doctors and medicine for it to go away and it wasn’t!!!!!! I am so glad to come across this website! Now I know!!!! Who the hell else can you go to that doesn’t have all that crazy crap in their products? Thank god VAlerie Lammon posted that website. I am going to try that out. Hope that works out.

  • Chasity

    I am typical vs lover of all clothing but I am furious that these “pricy” garments are causing such medical issues and being overlooked. I have had a rash on and off for over a year now under my arms. I wear the very sexy push up and absolutly love the coverage & cleavage but all that seems to be lost when u lift ur arms up and you have scars from the rash. I expected that this was coming from the bras a mth after I purchased my bras. ( NOTICE I SAID BRAS) They run around 56.00 for one.. ( that is if u have to have a bigger size ) more garment that fucks your skin up. I m pissed about this. I spent all last summer on antibotics & could not enjoy outdoor activities due to the medication i stayed on for mths. I believe that Victoria secret needs to remove the products and reimburse all consumers for their purchases. WE ALL HAVE SUFFERED ENOUGH FROM THE “LUV PINK” wrath.

  • Julie

    I only recently purchased 3 bras from vs (as I hate wearing bras anyway) but I have been a customer of theirs for a long time for other products they have. Most recently I started getting an itchy rash on my breasts and the only new change is my bra. I immediately stopped wearing the bra as my husband said the rash was in the same area that the bra touched my skin. It started about one week ago and is finally starting to heal. I am planning on bringing all 3 bras that I purchased back and either ask for a full refund or an exchange. This is a total drag as the bras were comfortable (for a bra). I have now purchased a $10 bra at Walmart and I’ll buy another one there again.

  • Kristen

    Do you know if VS is refunding customers? I have to bring 3 back as the dermatoligist said that the bra gave me the rash I have. It is awful and very painful.

  • mmittles

    Yes, VS is offering money back for the bras. The last time I was in contact with them, that is what they offered. I, for one, was not willing to give mine back. The reason: they need to stop selling them until they figure out what is causing this and stop manufacturing them in that manner. I went legal- to try and make them actually do something and not sweep it under the rug.
    I do not believe it is formaldehyde, because the bras tested were found to have less ppm of this chemical than is allowed by the government. Many fabrics are treated with some formaldehyde, yet I have never in my life experienced anything from any other clothing.
    I have done some research of my own and have found a possible culprit…Rubber Accelerator Bleach Syndrome. It happens after several washings with detergent, as in my case. The rubber starts turning into other compounds and emitting them into your skin. This may also be the reason why not every woman has this reaction; some may be more sensitive to the chemicals emitted by this broken down rubber. I happen to have mild latex reactions. But, in this case, it was a severe reaction. The least VS can do, if this is the case, is put warnings on the advertisements and have them visually attainable to all who are purchasing.
    And, for those who may think we are “sue happy,” yes, we can stop wearing the bras, but VS is being negligent in their capitalism. They have known about this for years, and have done nothing to come up with a solution. All they are worried about is the all-mighty dollar. If I would have known about the problem with the bras, before I purchased…do you think I would be a complete moron and put one anywhere near my body? Especially on my breasts? Please refrain from making judgments on people and situations when you are not fully aware of all of the details. We are like you; we work hard, we try to enjoy ourselves on our time off, we raise families and we want to be able to feel secure with the items we purchase (especially when it comes to our health). This is the United States, and people who harm others (especially when they are making money as they are doing it) should be held accountable.

  • Susie

    I bet it is fermaldahyde in the fabric!

  • Miss Mo

    Well I guess it would help if you washed the garments before wearing them, especially underwear, you never know if they are selling (returned, already worn garments) grant it they shouldn’t be reselling them as a safety to their customer but as a consumer you have to be careful………Should they be accountable, yes…..why would you put the lives of your business in danger!

  • http://google Kristine S.


    I just bought several VS bras on Friday. I wore the 1st one yesterday and by the end of the day I have a HORRIBLE rash everywhere the bra sits except for the upper straps. I is very painful and I was up most of the night itching. I will be going back to VS 1st thing tomorrow to return them. For me this is a live learn situation….if it is too good to be true it obviously isn’t good at all. They were selling these bras for $12.99 each. (should have known better). I have worn the “Body by Victoria bras for several years and had no problem but instead of paying $48 dollars for it went for the “get several for the price of one” version…bummer!!

    I am wondering….has anyone had problems with the Body by Victoria line? You know…if it works…don’t fix it :o)

    Needless to say I will be heading back to the mall to return these problems right away!!

  • http://google Kristine S.

    By the way,

    to all these people looking for monitary gain that have been itching for 2 years or so….you must have some problem other than the one I am describing because you would have to be brain dead to live with the kind of instant itching and rash that I have for more than a good nights sleep at best! It really is hard to belive that you would go two years or even two days……get a life and quit trying to get rich off of someone else. Yes they need to compensate but only to legit cases.

  • Susan S.

    Has anyone reading these comments had any rashes from wearing Calvin Klein bras? I bought a new one a few weeks ago, wore it one time, and came home with a rash. I had a similar rash 2 years ago after wearing, with no problem, and then washing 2 Wacaol bras. I think the latter may have been due to the ‘rubber accelerator’ effect…..although I don’t remember using anything with bleach. But, the Calvin Klein bra was brand new! I’ve had no luck getting a response from the company. I just want to find out what else is in this thing! How frustrating…………

  • J

    IF YOU HAVE NOT EXPERIENCED A RASH FROM WEARING VA BRAS, PLEASE DON’T JUDGE THOSE OF US WHO HAVE THAT ARE TAKING A STAND TO VOICE WHAT HAS HAPPENED TO US! The reason horrible things continue to happen to many innocent unsuspecting people is because others who have been victimized usually sit back & say nothing out of fear that people like you will belittle them & make them feel bad about what has happen to them, and feel even worse for coming forward to speak the truth. Until you have had this experience, you will never understand what if feels like! I spent over $500 on VS bras & have suffered miserably with unbearable itching, burning rashes all over my breast. It was so bad that I was even embarassed to show my husband who was almost in tears when he saw it. He told me that he felt bad & if he was partially to blame because he was with me the day that I bought them & encouraged me to spend the money to get them. For me, it’s not about the money, but moreso the fact that VS should be held accountable for how they are ruining women’s lives! Yes, there are people who are ingnorant & sue happy, but the vast majority of us that end up on these sites, landed here in search of answers, & were relieved to know that there were others out there that could relate to what we were going through. If it wasn’t for the first young lady taking a stand & voicing what happened to her, we’d probably all still be scratching our boobs wondering what in the world is happening to us. So kudos to whoever it was that BRAVE enough to take a stand for all of us that have encountered this problem. I WILL NEVER BUY VS products again, not even a small bottle of perfume!! I REFUSE TO SPEND MY HARD EARNED MONEY WITH A COMPANY THAT CARES NOTHING ABOUT THE WELLBEING OF THEIR CUSTOMERS! I worked for Limited Brands for 8 years & I’m very disappointed to see that their quality & standards have gone from 10 to a whopping 0. LES WEXNER, I EXPECT BETTER FROM YOU!!! YOU HAVE MADE MILLIONS IF NOT BILLIONS OFF OF THE VERY CUSTOMERS YOU ARE ALLOWING TO EXPERIENCE THIS NIGHTMARE!! Why are you continuing to put a band-aid over this problem?? DO SOMETHING TO FIX IT, even if it means closing the doors to every VS store until you have it under control. PEOPLE’S LIVES, HEALTH, & WELL-BEING ARE FAR MORE IMPORTANT THAN YOUR BOTTOM LINE & “BRAND IMAGE”!!!!!

  • Lauren

    I agree with J. I bought 2 VS bras 3 months ago and have been getting painful bumps and rashes on my back from where the straps sit and where the bra does up. It just dawned on me that I was only getting these bumps during and after wearing one of my VS bras and did a google search for “bra cause rash?” and found so many results for VS bras causing rashes. I wont be buying any VS bras again or products for that matter. What a horrible company.

  • Lauren

    I purchased a bra from Cacique and I started to develop a horrible rash on my left breast that itched so bad. I had also noticed how my breasts shrank. I never had a problem before wearing this particular bra.

  • http://google shonda


    I have had this bad rash that won’t go away underneath my breast. All I wear are Victoria Secret’s bras with the underwire. The rash was off and on. HOwever, this time, it will not go away. I have tried Cortizone.10 and it is not working.

    How can I get in on the law suit.

    Thank you.

  • Unhappy

    This is all still happening. I recently purchased a bra from the VS VERY SEXY collection. After only 8 hours of wearing this bra I woke up the next morning with large boil-like hives in the PERFECT outline of a bra around both of my breasts. Very itchy and very painful. This is so frustrating and very disappointing. I have filed a complaint and will let you all know what happens from there. I will never buy from VS again, putting my bodys health at risk is NOT worth it.

  • Jess

    What bra do I buy instead of VS? I am having problems with a rash on my chest. It was just strange looking at first and not itchy. It became itchy and painful.


  • doreen

    I have been wearing Victorias Secret bras for years and love them, however
    I just bought 2 new IPEX bras 1 month ago, then slowly developed a
    worsening hive-like rash in the shape of the bra,but also in my armpits.
    I remembered seeing the article about some people having an allergic
    rxn to the bras, and so quit wearing the Victoria Secret bras. Have been
    wearing my sports bras to work! I cannot seem to get rid of the rash, but
    I noticed some women saying it has taken up to a month to get rid of the
    rash. I am putting on steroid creams every day. I am not interested in suing
    anyone, I really like Victoria Secret products and wish they would get this
    problem addressed.

  • Mary Ellen

    I too have found out that I am allergic to the newer padded bras. For me it doesn’t matter if they are from Victoria’s Secret or JC Penney…if there is “memory foam” type padding in the bra whether covered with nylon fabric or cotton, I get a severe rash after just one day of wear. The rash is red, itchy, and raised and lasts for several days after I stop wearing the bra. The bad part is….try to find a bra that provides support and coverage that does not contain this padding. I have had no success and I am not interested in wearing one of those flimsy lacy bras that are like wearing nothing at all. Has anyone found a brand that does not cause them any problems? Thanks.

  • http://yahoo.com 18 and allergic to nickle and annoyed about it

    I’ve gotten a bunch of bra’s at VS and I’ve i broke out where the underwire was and the i stopped wearing it for a while and the rash went away, well i went to wal*mart and bought a bra wth underwire in it and it broke me out also, i then figuared it out that its underwire was made out of nickle because when i was about 5, my glasses made a rash over the bridge of my nose where the nose piece was and i had a metal allergy test performed on me and the doctors said i was allergic to nickle alloy, the rash whent away in about 3 weeks, the type of metal i have in my glasses are stainless steel and i havent had the problem with rashes ever since, i

  • Angelnags

    I am not interested in a law suit but I would like to know how to get rid of this rash! I developed this ugly red, bumpy, painful rash from the bra, and thank God for sites like this, because I had no idea about the VS allergy controversy but through researching this rash I am convinced my rash is from the bra. I wore it that day and it is right in the spot where the bra sits under my arm pit. I thought a spider bit me or something, but it has been 4 days now I have not worn the bra since, and I would like to know what everyone did to get rid of it and how long did it take?

  • Karen

    I bought bras in Canada under the Vanity Fair / Van-Elle label and in one single wearing of 8 hours I have a horrible painful rash. The rash started out bumpy, and within 24 hours looks like a reverse sunburn, wherever the bra touched my skin. The rash extends around to my back, under my arms, up my shoulders, and down onto my ribcage like a further contact reaction. It’s also on my inner upper arm where that part of my arm brushes my bra, even through clothes. And yes, I washed the bra three times before wearing it, because once while on vacation, I wore a new unwashed bra and ended up with the same rash. So washing or not washing doesn’t seem to make any difference, but it may be noteworthy that the bras causing the rash are black. The beige bras from the same manufacturer did not seem to cause the same problem. I have taken Benadryl and Aleve, and used a cortaid cream, but that only makes the burning pain subside slightly. If anyone has had similar bra rash problems in Canada with these manufacturers I’d like to hear from them.

  • Tina Pritchard

    I have MYRSA staff infection that keep coming back from the victoria seret bras.. Is there any lawsuits or an attorney that can help me? ty

  • http://wallers@sti.net Angie

    Man what a waste of money! Not a scratchless day for 4 months now after buying 3 Victoria’s Secret bras. Never had anything like this happen to me. Now I know. Throw them away!!!!!!!!!!!

  • http://discovermagazine.com Julie Zaccheo


    I bought 3 of these bras, it took me 2 yrs. to figure out why I got rashes!!!
    tried to return to store but no receipt, I have three almost new bra’s.
    waist of money.

  • Janice

    I too developed a severe itchy rash on my breasts after buying and wearing VS bras in march of 2010. It was bad for a time and then after applying creams and lotions to my breasts twice a day, and washing the bras several more times, the rash went away. It has changed the skin on my breasts, hopefully temporarily. The rash was clearly from the bras, because it occurred exclusively where the bras touched my skin, and absolutely nowhere else on my body. I did not wear any other bra during this time, and did not change detergent, soap, or anything else. It shocks me that Victoria’s Secret is not taking responsibility.


    I had a double Mastectomy 2/2009 after completeing all the necessary surgeries for reconstruction, I had one of my pockets where the implants sit, start to bottom out. I underwent another surgery to correct the pockets in my chest. It was at this time that my Plastic Surgeon encouraged me to only where underwire bras. I went to a mastecomy store that sells bras, if you only knew how unstylish they are you would understand why I went to VS. So I purchased a few bras from Victoria Secrets with the assistance of a sales associate to be certain that they fitted properly and targeted the areas of needs as well as comfort. I started wearing them in Dec of 2009. In Jan of 2010 I developed this rash that was so severe and was oozing puss that the Dr. put me in the hospital for 3 days on IV drips, certain that it was celucitis. This helped for a while until the anitbiotics left my system. It returned with a vengence, the Plastic surgeon could not get me into a dematologist as they were on vacation. We tried numerous Dr. in the Denver, Co. area and they all felt it was a surgical propblem not a dematologist problem. All my labs we fine. He sent me in for another surgery certain that I was having a reaction to the implants and developed a severe infection. NO!!! not the problem. More antibiotics we administered and the infection they were calling it went away. It came back in April again when I returned home from a tennis match where it was quite warm. I went to shower and my bra would not come off. it was litarally glued to my skin from this yellow like fluid that was seeping from my incisions and nipples. The rash was so bad. I called the Plastic Surgeon and he put me back in the hopital for more IV drips. I was furious with his choice. I went into anifalactic shock as I was severly allergic to the antibiotic they used. Thank God this sent an alert to all sorts of Dr. to assist in my diagnosis. A Dematologist, Invectious control specialist, Internal Medicine, and an Allergist. They started me on IV drip steroids. That was amazing all the symptoms went away. Vani Cream also does help to take the itch away and keeps the rash down. It is only available through the phamacy area but a perscription is not required. I began patch testing to all sorts of material. As of yesterday 4/23/2010 I finally had my answers. I am over the top allergic to nickle,cobalt & fermaldahyde. In case many of you do not know this I will let you know that ALL VS bras underwire, clasps, & hooks are all made of nickle.I would also say that it will take 5 washes they say before almost all the femaldahyde is out of your clothing. Another thing to keep in mind is VS is NOT the only company to use fermaldahyde. It is also in Spanx, Under Armor and Nike. I was so excited to hear that this may be the end of the journey for me. Please check with an allergist. If you can not wear cheap jewlrey you too might have a reaction to the underwires. I dont feel that suing is an answer for this I do think that making it public knowledge is a good thing. Good luck to all.

  • Kirsten

    NOT JUST VICTORIA SECRET. I got a horrible rash from a Warner bra I purchased last week at Kohl’s. The rash is in the exact shape of the bra on the sides of my breasts and underneath and it started the same day I wore it (last Thursday). Of course, I stopped wearing it immediately, but by Friday it was really bad and it has not improved (today is Monday). It is very difficult to concentrate while at work with this constant itching and it is also painful. I had to go home at lunch and change into a tank top with a somewhat built in bra because even my bras I wore without problems prior to this are so uncomfortable with this horrible rash. I also have trouble sleeping as I wake up in the middle of the night itching terribly. I went to the dermatologist this morning and have started on Desoximetasone 0.05% cream (I believe it is a steroid cream) and hopefully it will clear it up. The bras ARE NOT UNDERWIRE and they were made in China and my other bras that I wore prior to this were not made in China AND most are underwire and I have never had this problem before last week. Needless to say, I will be returning these to Kohl’s and now I am very wary of buying new bras. I am telling all my female friends about this and I can only hope that they will also spread the word. I will stay away from bras made in China, but only because these were and it happened to me…I know it has happened to others with bras not made in China, so who knows! I guess I will stick with the brand I have used before (these were my first AND LAST Warner bras). It is a shame women are going through this and people are posting negative responses…it is just ignorance and you have to take it with a grain of salt.
    Best of luck, ladies!

  • Marie

    Hi so I have been reading everyones comments and I have the same problem but Its with Victoria secret swimsuits. I never had problems with swimsuits until about a year and a half ago. I get very itchy and red and liquid puss comes out of my breasts and butt. It sucks, when I go on vacation I am so embarrassed because I feel like you can see the rash by my bottom. I am 21 years old and this is terrible. Thank you for all you comments cause if I wouldn’t have seen this I would have just lived with the problem and never stopped wearing this brand.

  • Gloria

    My problem is with Barely There bras. I bought them in March and they are just now (June July) giving me a rash. Nothing is different but the rash comes exactly where the cup of the bra touches my skin – only the cup. Real weird. I got rid of the rash once with cortisone cream and then just to be sure I wore the bra again a couple of days ago. Sure enough the rash is back. I too don’t care about any law suit for money damages. I just want these bras to get off the market somehow. I have written to Barely There folks – not sure if they will respond.

  • Lisa

    I got my 4th rash in 3 mos from 3 different bras one of which I just purchased June 30 so these bras are still on market. Will never buy vs again. What lawfirm is handling class action. Lets get these toxic bras off market ladies! I am 42 and this is the only allergy I have ever had. Bad stuff in them. Also had difficulty breathing twice during flareups.

  • cindy

    I have been dealing with this same problem. I got the new bra from Lane Bryant but it is also made in China. I feel like I have the hives and it will not go away or stop itching. I love the way the bra fits supposedly recommended by Oprah but I am going to discontinue these for a while and see if there is improvement. I also thought it was hives or maybe laundry detergent but it is only in my breast area. Something just isn’t right.

  • Paula K

    OMG What about the miraculous ones ? I have bougth three now, I have huge rashes in my armpits, burning, This appeared about three weeks ago. I wonder if it is the bras??? I bought three miraculous VS ones

  • Susie

    I bet all of these bras were made in China and they all have fermaldahyde. I stopped wearing the Barely There Bras and it took about 6 mos for my rash to go away. I couldn’t wear any bra except for a sports bra that did not touch the skin under the breast for at least 2 months.

  • Sheri

    I bought some Barely There bras from Kohls Department Store and they fit GREAT! After a few wearings, I started to itch on my back and under my breasts. I can’t find any relief and am disappointed that it is a brand that I finally fit into.

  • Karen

    i bought 2 VS bras a couple of months ago. I developed an itchy rash under both breasts after they had been washed several times and didn’t think it was the bras. I started using antibiotic cream and fungal cream not knowing what it was. I just decided to google this problem today and was astonished at what I read. I have never brought a bra that caused me to have a rash before. I will try to return them and see what happens.

  • Vicki

    Wow..I bought 4 body by Victoria racer back demi bras in June after shoulder surgery demanded I use front closure bras for more ease. I started itching and seeing red welts all over my breasts almost immediately but thought it was due to the extremely hot and humid summer we were having this year. I kept wearing them but interspersed them with my old ones so the itching would subside a bit some days and then return others….never realizing it was the VS bras!! Eventually I suspected the VS bras so went out just a couple weeks ago and purchase 5 new Barely There bras!!! Yikes…the rash is worse than ever! I am returning all of them!! I just went out yesterday and purchased 5 flimsy, pricey organic cotton bras….not too attractive but at least I can allow them to touch my skin!! Hoping this unsightly rash will subside soon. Verrrry unsettling that these bras are mostly made in China and Thialand now and are undoubtedly using more fermeldehyde than before. Lesson learned!!

  • Sandi

    I had the same problem with Bali bras. I wore the same style for 2 years with no problem. This summer I purchased 2 more of the same style and a rash developed under one breast, then eventually spread to both breasts. Like other posters on this board, I did not think it was the bras and went thru every possible over-the-counter medication to get rid of what I thought was a heat rash, but nothing worked. I finally saw my gyn who said it was a yeast infection. SHe gave me the same med they use for vaginal infections and it did nothing. Then I went to my regular MD who prescribed a powder. The itching stopped but the redness is still there. After searching the internet I found that it wasnt just me suffering from this problem. I stopped wearing those bras but it is taking a long time for the redness to clear. I do believe the manufacturers are using a different process regardless if the clothes are made in China, Indonesia, or who knows where. Maybe they spray the clothing before it is shipped. I recently went to a dept store where the sales clerk was sneezing and rubbing her eyes. She told me that within the past year or so, she developed an allergy to “…all those chemicals on the clothes.” Incidentally, she worked in the lingerie dept!!!

  • Laura

    I too have developed rash, under my breast itching , I am wearing VS bra and Lane Bryant, I have been using baking soda powder under my breast and anti itch cream. I just gooled breast itching and up came this, it’s unreal, I have paid alot of money for these bras. Do not have underwire in them. I bet I won’t get money back from either, have had bras awhile but rash started 2 months ago. VS bra is Body by Victoria just looked at both Bras both made in China. Wow again we as women are scured, we pay way to much money on bra falling for oh look how that makes you look and thinking paying alot more get you better product. Looks like I will be going back to all cotton bras. And I am calling DR today. for some releif.

  • Annie

    I just got back from Urgent Care. The doctor couldn’t believe it when I told her I believed my allergies were a product of a VS bra. The allergies spread to my neck and face. The doctor told me to put the bra on a plastic bag and return it. I called the VS number provided on one of the websites and someone gave me medical advise: cold compresses and Vitamin E. She also told me to go to the doctor if it became worse. I just did! Next she advised me to return the bra for a full refund. I truly hope this goes away because I’m truly miserable and it’s been a week! I’m on steroids right now.

  • Kat

    Hi Annie:

    I hope that you’re doing better by now. Did you wear the bras for a while or did the rash appear right away ? I had rashes from two different bras – VS Ipex in Nude color bought online and Bali bought at Kohl’s – the hive like rash appeared the same day I wore them for the first time – strangely the VS Ipex in Black bought in the store at the same time did not bother me at all.

  • loretta

    I wore a VS bra on 4/22/2011, that I had purchased a few years ago – it looks like an animal scratched my back to pieces. I have a terrible bloody welts and pain. I noticed in the past years the welts on my back could never figure it out. When I wore the bra, by back broke out within a couple of hours. I’d like to get information on the class action suit. Testimonies are great, but let’s join forces and do something about this injustice to women.

  • http://www.gigbowl.com service marketplace

    Your post was definitely a good read & I respect not crappy content on the web since alot of it’s the same thing. I understand that when your talking about content it’s for the most part King in the case of getting a webpage ranked and so on (most likely the reason I found this). I’ve done a couple websites back when and am putting time on an online mini gigs marketplace kinda site for users to visit and buy and sell services to eachother. So I need to focus on writing some article content and what not on there and so forth. Anyway take it easy and keep getting out quality content.

  • Someone

    I was looking for good bras and I just so happened to come across Victoria Secret Bras. I researched about it and I am glad I did, if I had not I would have those horrible rashes that many woman were describing about. Thank you for sharing your stories, I appreciate it.

  • Justa

    I purchased a Body by Victoria bra ( my second) and ever since I have had SEVERE itching on my breasts, I have never had this before. I figured it was my bra causing it, but I didn’t figure it was actually the bra! I have scratches, bruising, scaly skin. It hurts and is embarrassing. I am SO glad I read this!

  • kim

    I have purchased several expensive underwire bras from VS and I have suffered from a rash under my breasts and between my cleavage. The rash comes and goes but I have found it is not responding to ointments or creams. I thought maybe there was nickel or something in the wire that was causing the irratation. Is VS willing to reimburse for these bras/?

  • krissy

    OMG. I think I have the same rash as everyone else. Mine is from a warner bra made in China that I bought from Kohls. I wore it once without any problem… Washed it once and the rash started. I Knew it was strange when I googled rash pictures and my symptoms dont match any of them. It looks roundish shaped curling iron burns! But are itchy. I even had blood work done to make sure i didnt have something else going on! I’m taking my bra to be tested. I dont care how much it costs me. I hope these “burn marks” dont leave scars.

    • Consss

      Wow,,,the same happened to me,,,after HOURS and HOURS searching on rash pics ,,i couldent find any pic like my rashes ,,,today i went to dermatologyst ant bingo !!! Was a dermatitis of wearing my bra,,,!!

    • gg

      I got a rash 2 weeks ago after wearing a Barely There Wire free bra I purchased at Kohl’s as well. I wore it once before washing it without any issues.that same night I washed it in hot water & added a little bleach since it was white and after wearing it for 2 hours, oh boy I was itching, burning, stinging so bad!!!! Since I was at work, I kept it on but when I got home and took it off, my breasts were so red and itchy only where my cups were covering, It looked like a sunburn only opposite at first I thought it could have been the bleach but then I googled this because this has never happened to me before, that’s where I discovered it was the polyurethane in the cups! OMG!!! I WILL NEVER MAKE THAT MISTAKE AGAIN!! My rash went away in like 4 days. Thank God!

  • Karen Harper-Hall

    August 25th, 2011
    I have a doctor’s appt. this morning at 8:30 with an allergist. I was online trying to see what could be causing my whelts when I came upon this sight. I too have had whelts around my breasts and now elsewhere for about 6 weeks. I saw one doctor already and he prescribed me a couple prescriptions, but neither of them seem to help. Benadryl helps with the itching, but not the whelts. I had part of a steroid pack left over from a prior prescription and that seems to help, but I can not stay on steroids the rest of my life. I need help and by the way…I too wear VS bras. I just hope this is a fluke or maybe it could be a relatively easy fix to at least my problem since I have not had any scarring; however, it is miserable and embarrassing!!!

  • Sue

    I’ve been a VS customer for years, but this week I bought some VS bras online and all of them, especially the molded cup cotton ones, had a strong,chemical smell which irritated my throat. I returned them…no sense taking chances. But I’m really annoyed that VS can get away selling this kind of product. In any case, ladies, if the bra smells, don’t keep it. Send it back and let VS know that bras that reek of chemicals aren’t acceptable. Not to mention the safety of the people who are working with these bras everyday at packing facilities and in the stores. Ugh!

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  • mbla

    wow i thought i was the only one! i had a persistent rash for about 2 years, and doctors couldn’t figure  out why for the life of them. I had worn victorias secret bras on a regular basis, in fact didn’t wear any other brand..then i managed to meet with a dermatologist who also couldn’t figure it out after several visits and tests…but randomly suggested i try a different brand of bra…voila!!! rash cleared in about 5 days and hasn’t been back since! it was for sure the victorias secret bras :( 

  • SoCal Nancy

    I am so sad to hear that so many women are suffering with these rashes like I am.  I was doing fine wearing my old Body by Victoria bra that I’ve had for a couple of years and thought that I should get some new ones.  After wearing the new bra for just one day, I developed a painful, welty rash in my armpits (not itchy).  I, too, went to my doctor then my dermotologist who prescribed the same medicine.  It is working, but if I wear my old bra, any kind of activity with my arms aggravates the condition, and it comes back immediately.  It’s awful that so much stuff is being made in China and other places where they is obviously no quality control, except for aesthetics.  I don’t know what kind of bra to buy now.  From one of the other posts, it looks like an organic bra is going to be it for me.  I loved the VS bras, but we need to get on their backs about this or else nothing will be get done. 

  • Kathyolsz

    Have vs biofit bra. After two hand washings underwire poked out. You pay so much for so little. Now you fear it’s causing itching rash. Wow back to my old brand. Why does Victoria secret not listen to their bra customers.

  • Withheld

    April 2012, I had this happen to me and after my own ‘experiment’ a year ago March 2011, I fully discovered it was their bras, including push up bra swimsuit I also purchased.  Don’t want their money just SAFETY of all Women who wear them!! I wrote them and got my $ back.  In need of”” push up” a year later and just last week April 7 2012 I decided, to return to VS and purchase a push up bra, thinking it was a fluke before.  After wearing it a day (and washing the bra in only cold water, by hand- no soap) I broke out in a very bad rash in my breast area, underneath and all through from nipple down. It is horrific!!!  The itching is unbelievable!  Women, these bras are not safe!!! and over time, whose to say they are not causing cancer.  They are made in Chine.  I will not be returning to ever wear their bras.  Watch the news for more on this!!  Ldzr1@cox.net  Phoenix/Scottsdale Arizona

  • Nora

    I am researcher in neurobiology and have a lingerie boutique http://www.mydreamlingerie.com and the weird think is why they still used formaldehyde for textil or other stuf. Because in the lab i use formaldehyde to fix the brain and it is a highly teratogenic and cancerigenic !

  • Kalbfler

    Hey Ladies, it is not just Victoria Secret bras.  I bought a Bali bra, and received a rash everywhere the bra touched my skin, except under the straps.  More recently, I bought a Barely There bra, and the same thing has happened.  I went to a doctor after I received the first rash.  The doctor suggested that I had developed an allergy to spandex.  I would have to disagree, since not all bras with spandex bother me.

  • Ann

    Those of you claiming we are are stupid and ignorant and all the other hateful comments should be ashamed. A little over a year ago I broke out in red welts all over my sides and under my breasts. It happened while I was wearing a Victoria’s Secret bra from the PINK line for less then three hours. The welts eventually turned into itchy gaping wounds, then scabs, and now a year later I still have scabs and permanent scaring. I have been to multiple doctors, dermatologists, allergists, etc. and none of them can diagnose the rash! I have been diagnosed with everything under the sun from shingles to dermatitis. I have been on more prescription medications then I can count. I have tried creams, lotions, etc. I only wore the bra for three hours and now I am apparently going to have this rash and scarring for the rest of my life and you dare think Victoria’s Secret should not be liable for that? I’m not looking to sue and rich, but I want some damn answers! Someone please just tell me how do I make this go away? Nothing has worked. I wish I had read about this back in 2008 when it happened, or that they had gone forward with the lawsuit and VS wasn’t around anymore. But because they didn’t and the bras are still on the shelf now this happened to me and the last year of my life has been miserable. Please don’t compare this to a nut allergy. I know being allergic to anything sucks, but at least with that you can use an epi pen. You know what triggers your allergy and you can avoid it, and treat it if you come in contact with it. I have no idea how to make this go away and I should not have to suffer for the rest of my life over a bra! How dare some of you judge those of us who have suffered. Don’t ever take your top off when making love to your husband. Stop your life every few hours to wash your rash and apply creams to get mild (at best) relief from the itching. Feel like you can’t go anywhere because you can’t go out in public without a bra without it being noticeable, or put on a bra (not the one that gave you the rash) and walk around in public in pain. Feel like killing yourself every day because it would be better then going through the rest of your life like a leper! Come walk a mile in my shoes and then sit there and call me a money hungry sue happy person who was stupid enough to do this to herself by wearing a bra. Fuck you all.

  • Itchy Breast

    Well, I am going to the doctors today. I am freaking out, my breasts are so itchy and I have a rash primarily under my breasts for over a month and have developed ugly scaring mainly under my breasts. The area under my arms, my nipples, infact the whole breast area is so itchy I want to rip my breasts off. I feel like I have fleas, mites, lice or something. After I googled itchy breasts–it can be anything from breast cancer to a reaction to the VS bras that I purchase about a month ago. The only thing new in my life over the last month is the VS bras. Oddly enough, I stopped wearing them 2 days ago and I am getting better… If it’s the bras… I don’t know what to do about complaining. Anyone taking action? Count me in.


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