By Lisa Knych
Four students from North Carolina State University: Ankesh Madan, Tyler Confrey-Maloney, Stephen Grey and Tasso Von Windheim, have invented a drug-sensitive nail polish called Undercover Colors. The nail polish changes color from either pink or purple to black when it comes in contact with GHB, Rohypnol or Xanax, some of the more common date rape drugs. Women can dip a finger in a drink while wearing the polish to see if it has been tampered with.
Grissel Blackmon, a junior and psychology major with a minor in women and gender studies, is supportive of the product. “I found the idea really interesting and I love how they are putting themselves in a woman’s position. Absolutely I would use this product and it would help me be more aware of what I am consuming,” Blackmon said.
Emma Hindman, a senior psychology major, agrees. “I think it’s a great idea and a great product. I don’t know why I…wouldn’t consider it.”
Then there came the issue of colors. As a woman, it can be important to match nail polish color to an outfit. “In general, I usually paint my nails any type of color so too bad if it doesn’t match…but a clear top coat that could change color instead would be helpful to those who are concerned with their outfit,” Blackmon said. Hindman said, “If I put myself in a situation where I would be at a higher risk it wouldn’t matter what color my nail polish is.”
Of course this is not an ordinary nail polish and that could affect how much a consumer is willing to pay for the product when it becomes available. Both Blackmon and Hindman said they would not pay more than $10, which is the price of popular brands like O.P.I or ESSIE.
When asked if this product actually works or if it is just a scam to make money, Hindman said, “Because I heard about the product through Facebook it makes me a little more skeptical, but I would like to give the inventors the benefit of the doubt and believe that they are actually trying to help women.”
Although it is unfortunate that date rape and rape culture has become so predominant that a product like this even has to be invented, Undercover Colors nail polish is an easy way for women to be in control of a situation. When considering safety over cost and vanity, safety should be priceless.
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