Victoria's Secret Bombshell Ingredients

Hi All,

I recently came across an interesting article that found the fragrance "Victoria's Secret Bomshell" to repel mosquitos to a significant extent over a couple of hours:

After significant online searching, I found the ingredients to a variety of other Victoria products:


but not the one I am looking before.

Although is says "secret", I assume it must have the ingredients on the box or bottle, so the info must be out there somewhere.

Could someone help me out please?


  • PerryPerry Administrator, Professional Chemist
    Hello Pete,

    The product that is supposed to work on mosquitos is the Victoria secret perfume. That means they only have to list the perfume ingredients as "fragrance".  They do have to list any solvents too but the active ingredient that would repel insects is some component in their fragrance. Fragrances are considered trade secrets and the only ingredients in a fragrance you have to list are ones known to be allergens.

    Bottom line is that you probably will never be able to figure out what ingredient is responsible for repellency.

  • johnbjohnb Member, Professional Chemist
    "Victoria's Secret" is merely a trade name and it doesn't imply any special dispensation the manufacturer may have to avoid their legal responsibility.


    If it is the ingredient list of the perfume components, you are out of luck.

    Detailed lists of the ingredients of perfumes remain a confidential except for a list of known allergens which are declared as a matter of consumer safety.

    A perfume compound will contain perhaps a hundred ingredients or even more - most of these with complicated chemical names - to declare each one would take up a huge amount of label space and be totally meaningless to the vast majority of consumers - and, more to the point, of zero interest or concern.

    A perfume manufacturer (fragrance house) will reveal the components of a perfume compound to interested parties if there is a compelling reason (usually medical or safety) for them to do so but not the proportions of each one except in a "banded" format.
  • Thanks guys. I wasn't aware there was a difference in regulations around disclosure for cosmetics vs perfumes. Something new learnt.

    Regarding finding out the active responsible for the antimosquito effect, I agree that is might be difficult to identify, but I see that as an opportunity right up my street, so thought it worth asking to at least narrow down the possibilities.

    Many thanks for your comments.

  • Bill_TogeBill_Toge Member, Professional Chemist
    the fragrance house will also have to declare any hazardous components on the MSDS (many of which are not required on the label), but only they and the manufacturer will be party to that
    UK based formulation chemist. Strongest subjects: hair styling, hair bleaches, hair dyes (oxidative and non-oxidative) I know some stuff about: EU regulations, emulsions (O/W and W/O), toothpaste, mouthwash, shampoos, other toiletries
  • Thanks. Sounds like I will need to just wait and see if further research comes out on this one.
  • johnbjohnb Member, Professional Chemist
    Pete, this effect has been studied by the research departments of some extremely large companies and I think that if there was any more to be made public, it would have been done by now.

    The biggest obstacle in declaring a material or essential oil an insect repellent is that for the majority of materials, whilst it may be a repellent to some species, that same material is an attractant to others.

    As an example, some years ago I worked for a company who were investigating the effects of lavender oil (and it components) on various arthropods. It was found that several components of lavender were highly effective in repelling a number of insect species. However, it was pointed out during the investigations that honey bees found lavender highly attractive - so much so that, when available, lavender formed the exclusive nectar source for them (you can even buy lavender honey).

    That, and similar findings with other plant species, put an abrupt end to the investigations
  • Thanks for that info johnb. I was interested in one particular mosquito that has recently taken resident in our area. They don't bite me, but they love my wife and daughter. They even bite my daughter during the day at school.

    Of course, I was not thinking of using the fragrance alone, but thought there might be some advantage here.

    Talking about bees, I think urban bee keepers find all kinds of different colour honeys in London depending on what happens to be tipped in the local dumps.

  • johnbjohnb Member, Professional Chemist
    I find your ideas on the origins of London honey interesting:

    "Talking about bees, I think urban bee keepers find all kinds of different colour honeys in London depending on what happens to be tipped in the local dumps."

    There was me thinking that honey was made from the nectar of flowers :)

  • I wish. I believe bee populations in the countryside have declines in most developed countries due to monocultures, pesticides and little space left for wild flowers. However, they appear to be thriving in cities - but I think I would want a tracker on them before eating the honey!
  • goldiegoldie Member
    citronella \geranium \melissa {i think you call it lemon balm}all of those essential oils been helping with keeping mosquitos away especially the citronella i think one of the component is driven from there from the citronella
  • Did a lot of research on this in seventies/eighties looking for Deet replacement in conjunction with ICR and two hours is easily achieved with fragrance oils but you will not know fragrance formula unless you get a sample and run GC to determine composition.
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