Victoria’s Secret Developing New ‘Mastectomy’ Bra For Breast Cancer Survivors

27 Year old Allana Maiden is a girl on a mission, to make every breast cancer survivor who has undergone mastectomy surgery to feel beautiful about their bodies in lingerie.

She was 6 years old when her mother, Debbie Barrett underwent surgery to have a single mastectomy and found that shopping for Bras afterward was a trying experience. Fueled by her mother’s survival and wanting to do something about this issue, she started a petition on to get the attention of Lingerie giant Victoria’s Secret to develop a bra for these types of women.

Allana Maiden & Debbie Barrett

Her idea was to enable breast cancer survivors to feel beautiful again. “Many women who undergo mastectomy surgery because of breast cancer suffer from body image issues. It doesn’t help that they don’t have the option of buying the pretty bras they wore before their battle with cancer, and specialty stores can be hard to find, forcing them to order bras online that they have to send back because they don’t fit properly,” she writes on her petition page.

She started the petition in January 2013 and in less than a month has already garnered over 120 000 signatures! This smart compassionate lady realized to get something like this made, she would have to target a massive brand like VS who have the money and influence to create a product to help women. She definitely picked the right brand as it seems Limited Brands (owner of Victoria’s Secret) are doing a massive overhaul of their public image. Just recently they announced they are aligning with Greenpeace, promising to manufacture underwear that is free from hormone-disrupting chemicals and toxins.

After delivering the 120 000+ signatures from their petition to a Victoria’s Secret head office in New York and pleaded their case for a Mastectomy Bra, Limited Brands have now agreed to work with Debbie and Allana to develop this new product! They want to meet with them in again in at their Headquarters in Ohio to fully understand the breast cancer survivor shopping experience from a consumer perspective to really understand what they go through.

Mastectomy Bra petition

While Allana was certainly a young woman determined to get the attention of the right people with her cause, she says she never expected to get right to the top as she has.

“We didn’t really know what to expect going in. [Tammy Myers, Limited Brands’ VP of external communications] had been really nice on the phone when I had talked to her before, and she seemed really interested in my ideas, so I kind of thought it would continue to go that way, but I wasn’t really expecting it to go that high.”

Meanwhile, Victoria’s Secret and Limited Brands are just as excited about the prospect of being involved in something meaningful for women, helping a large group feel beautiful, as is their mission with all their garments. This is the statement they put out after the meeting with Maiden and Barrett:

“We celebrate those who champion the fight against breast cancer. Victoria’s Secret and our parent company, Limited Brands, have been dedicated to helping eradicate this disease and have committed $10s of millions to cancer research. Ultimately, we are working towards celebrating the day when breast cancer is a thing of the past. In the meantime, we are listening and learning to understand if there are additional ways for our company to continue to extend its support.”

So what does Allana’s mum, who is accustomed to driving an hour and a half away from her rural town in Virginia to find the nearest specialty Bra store, think about her daughter speaking up and creating a movement?

“I was just really proud of her, going out and making a stand for others,” she said.

We are certainly inspired to read stories like this. It has gotten the attention of some major news sources here in the United States, but we hope that Victoria’s Secret will be able to develop a product for breast cancer survivors all around the globe. If ‘making women feel beautiful’ also extends to women who have had mastectomy surgery, then this label truly is a brand for all women everywhere!

What do you think about Allana Maiden and her quest to have Victoria’s Secret make a speciality bra for breast cancer survivors? Do you think this should’ve been made a long time ago?


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