A leading lingerie firm is being sued by dozens of women who claim their bras have made them ill.
Several customers who bought underwear from Victoria’s Secret say their push-up bras brought them out in painful rashes and welts.
One even claims to have been left permanently scarred after wearing the Angels Secret Embrace bra, which costs around £30.
Roberta Ritter, 37, said: ‘I had the welts that were very red, hot to the touch, extremely inflamed, blistery.
'It itched profusely. I couldn’t sleep and was waking up itching.’
Miss Ritter, who has filed a lawsuit against Victoria’s Secret – which uses supermodels including Giselle Bundchen and Heidi Klum to advertise its lingerie – said she has been contacted by dozens of women suffering similar symptoms.
She also claimed tests on her bra showed traces of formaldehyde, which is used in the textile industry to make fabrics crease-resistant.
Miss Ritter, from Ohio in the U.S., said she believes she may have suffered an allergic reaction to the chemical.
Roberta Ritter claimed her Angels Secret Embrace bra left her in agony
A US medical Web site was flooded with complaints against the underwear company.
"I had an awful itchy, red splotchy rash from the Secret Embrace bras," one poster complained.
Another Victoria's Secret bra wearer believes she may have suffered an allergic reaction to the chemical.
She said: "I had the welts, very red, hot to the touch, extremely inflamed, blistery. It itched profusely. I couldn't sleep, waking up itching.
However, a spokesman for Victoria’s Secret has denied that formaldehyde is used to produce its bras.
"We have strict quality controls around our products, and we do not use formaldehyde in our bras," the company said in a statement.
‘We are sorry that a small number of people have had an issue,’ he added.
‘Customer safety and satisfaction are always our primary concerns and we take seriously any issues that our customers may have with our products.’
A judge will decide next year if the lawsuit can be brought against Victoria's Secret.
Ritter, and others who have joined a class action lawsuit, are demanding compensation.
Victoria's Secret is not sold in the UK. British customers can only buy its lingerie online which is then shipped over from America.
A spokeswoman for the company said yesterday it had received no complaints from British customers about the bra.