CVS might have stopped selling cigarettes, but you can still buy booze at the drugstore chain — without even getting carded. Just head over to the homeopathic medicine section and pick up some store-brand “constipation relief,” which just happens to be 40-proof.
In a piece for Slate on homeopathic medicine, chemist and blogger Yvette “Sci Babe” d’Entremont notes that this particular CVS product is 20% ethanol, meaning it contains more alcohol by volume than beer or wine.
Yes, the product is sold in 1 ounce containers, but at 20% alcohol and without any age requirement, it might be easier than trying to refill mom and pop’s vodka bottle with water.
In a recent YouTube clip, d’Entremont — an adult — put the product to the test, downing six ounces of the supposed constipation reliever.
After 20 minutes, she was legally drunk:
Well, lots of drugs have side effects and can be abused, but at least they still do what they’re supposed to, right?
If you consumed six servings of a constipation-relieving medicine, you probably would be too busy in the bathroom to worry about your intoxication. But according to d’Entremont the only thing she experienced from her experiment was a buzz.
“It doesn’t do what it claims to do and it got me drunk,” said d’Entremont. “I want people to be a little more discerning when they go to pick up a medication because you might end up with something with no medicine and a lot of alcohol in it.”
And yet, as NBC Los Angeles confirmed, anyone can walk into a CVS and buy the product without being carded.
A news producer sent their 15-year-old daughter into a CVS, where she was able to purchase the product without any issues:
Most over-the-counter drugs are limited in the amount of alcohol they can use as an inactive ingredient, but according to federal law, homeopathic medications are exempted from these limits.
CVS’s response to NBC Los Angeles was to point out that “Homeopathic products are regulated by the FDA. The alcohol content in this type of product is not unusual and our products should only be used as directed.”