5 Tricks To End Distracted Driving That Are Easier Than Painting Your Nails Red

February 18, 2014

People use nail polish for a lot of things. They use it to paint their nails, obviously. They also paint keys to identify them at a glance. And, fun fact: nail polish is great for holding screws in place.

But that's not how the people at Evolution Bureau use nail polish. No, at least one employee of the San Francisco-based marketing firm uses it to remind himself not to text while driving. Check out the short video above that he created for something called the "Red Thumb Reminder" campaign. (We'll wait.)

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It's not a bad idea. Slapping a coat of nail polish on your thumb is a lot more colorful than tying a piece of string around your finger. (Well, unless you use red string.) And it's probably friendlier to your phone than, say, velcro-ing it to the hood of your car when you're on the road. 

But it's also kind of a pain. Nail polish can take a long time to dry, and until you're a pro, you're bound to get it everywhere: on clothes, on car seats, and also on your phone. Plus, painting your nail means you have to walk around with a big red thumb, looking like you smacked it with a Wile E. Coyote-sized cartoon hammer from the Acme Corporation.

Surely there are simpler, cleaner, acetone-freer ways to keep yourself from texting while driving, right? 

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Indeed. Indeed, there are. Here are five.

1. Turn off your phone. You want a low-tech solution? There's your low-tech solution. Added bonus: painting a nail takes at least three fingers, but turning off your phone takes one.

2. Silence your phone and keep it in your pocket or purse. Suffer from FOMO? Don't want to spend the five seconds needed to power down your phone? Flip the switch to silence it, then put the phone someplace you can't easily reach. You might be tempted to go for it if you feel/hear the phone vibrating, but hopefully, the struggle to extract it from its hiding place will remind you, "Oh, yeah, I put it there for a reason."

3. Use the built-in features on your phone. Iphones come with a "Do not disturb" function in the settings menu. Other phones offer similar options. Try them.

4. Use an app. Holy crapamole, there are dozens and dozens and dozens of apps to curb distracted driving, and many are free. Test a few until you find one that works for you. 

5. Don't answer your phone. Here's a thought: use a bit of willpower and avoid picking up your phone while driving. It's a complicated maneuver, we know, but as one of the very few animals gifted with the ability of foresight, humans like you can see the potential consequences of sending a quick "sup?" to your bros. At least one of those consequences is very, very unpleasant. 

Then again, you could paint your thumbnail red. Just be sure to stock up on nail polish remover -- that stuff doesn't come off.


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