CVS Drops ID Requirements for Nail Polish Remover Purchases

Store says acetone in the remover can be used to make methamphetamine

By Erica Jones
|  Wednesday, Aug 14, 2013  |  Updated 3:09 PM PDT
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CVS Drops ID Requirements for Nail Polish Remover Purchases

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After one week, CVS has dropped a new requirement for customers to show ID when purchasing nail polish remover in all but three states.

The drug store chain's policy capped the amount of acetone products a customer can purchase each day. Acetone, a common ingredient in many polish removers, is one of the ingredients used illegally to produce methamphetamine, the chain has said.

"After thoroughly reviewing our policies for the sale of products that contain acetone, in most states, we will no longer require customers to present an ID to purchase these products, including nail polish remover," CVS Public Relations Director Mike DeAngelis said.

DeAngelis noted the change will take effect before the end of this week, but CVS pharmacies will continue the policy in West Virginia, California, and Hawaii.

Back in 2010, the pharmacy chain was sued for allowing multiple purchases of cough medicines containing pseudoephedrine, an over-the-counter drug that can be used to produce methamphetamine, The New York Times reported.

Multiple acetone and pseudoephedrine purchases can be indicative of "smurfing," a practice that involves criminals buying small quantities of substances that can be used to make methamphetamine from many different drug stores.

Seeing an uptick in meth production, law enforcement officials have recently begun monitoring the purchase of some over-the-counter medicines.

Following the $77.6 million lawsuit, CVS changed its policies and began tracking the purchase of pseudoephedrine products.

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