Fitness tracker company Fitbit has admitted that its new Fitbit Force wristband device is causing ugly rashes and skin allergies in some users. Today, Fitbit is inviting those affected to contact the company for a replacement device or refund.
“We are aware that some of our customers have reported a skin irritation from wearing their Force device,” Fitbit wrote in a statement to website The Consumerist. “As with any jewelry or watch, numerous factors could cause a skin irritation, such as nickel sensitivity (surgical stainless steel is an alloy containing traces of nickel), reactions to bacteria that can accumulate in wristbands, or a sensitivity to the material of the band elastomer.”
Dermatologist J. Todd Williams told Engadget that he believes most people’s problem with the Force stems from “irritation from water/sweat” that gets trapped under the band. Like with a watchband that causes clammy skin, the solution is to remove the device daily to give your skin a chance to breathe and be cleaned with antibacterial soap. Serious or persistent rashes, of course, should be referred to a medical professional.
If that solution doesn’t work for you, though, you won’t be left holding the bag on a $129.95 device. Fitbit has agreed to offer refunds to anyone suffering from a rash they believe came from the tracker. “Our customers are our top priority, so we already have been taking steps to make this right with any customers who feel that they have an allergy related to their Fitbit device including offering a refund or a choice of a replacement tracker. Fitbit will handle all shipping costs and will provide a refund in any difference in price.”
For details on how to return your device and seek a refund or exchange, Fitbit is requesting you send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org.