Bid For a Good Cause: Pepperface Against Domestic Violence

05/03/2007 at 10:30 AM ET

Throughout this month, Lindsay Lohan, Carmen Electra, Denise Richards and Tori Spelling will all participate in the Pepperface 2007 Prevention Purple celebrity auction by creating customized Pepperface Edition Palm Defenders to support the end of violence against women. Each celebrity adds a signature touch to the pocket-sized pepperspray vials with crystals and precious stones. Carmen Electra, who decorated her defender with skull design, says of the campaign, “It’s so important to raise awareness about sexual violence. All women need to be educated so they feel safe and know how to protect themselves.” Bidding on the one-of-a-kind Palm Defenders is up on and will continue through the month of May with all of the proceeds benefiting the National Center on Domestic and Sexual Violence.

Photo: courtesy pepperface; Alberto E. Rodriguez / Getty

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Showing 25 comments

Elda on

i have to say that it’s the cutest pepper spray i’ve ever seen, i have always had one but not like that one and it’s for a good cause!

amy on

I love this!! It’s a great way to be chic and kick ass.

FH on

Yea, it looks cool, but is completely useless. Unless you walk around carrying it in your hand, most women never get the chance to use it, and even then are unlikely to hit their target with it during an attack. More likely she will end up having it used against her, to disable her. There are far more effective self-defense tricks out there that this organization should promote. Pepper spray is just feel-good bandaid.

TS on

FH expresses an awfully harsh point of view about this product. I can’t imagine that the statistics actually support this. I would venture to guess that many victims see their attacker coming and wish they had a means of defense. Should everyone learn self-defense? Yes. Will everyone take the time to do so? No. Could this product help either way? Absolutely.

I think it’s a fantastic product — functional, stylish, and in support of a good cause. I just ordered one.

AM on

FH must not have a pepperface unit. I live in a city environment college campus and feel so much safer when I walk around with my pepperface unit. I have had mine for months and I don’t go anywhere without it. I walk from my car or from my friend’s house with my pepperface unit in my hand at all times, especially at night. Women’s safety is such a difficult issue to tackle these days, and I truly believe Pepperface can help solve some of the problems. My mom always told me it was better to be safe than sorry, and I feel much safer with this product. Safety is a lifestyle choice, and having my pepperface unit makes me responsible for my own safety.

Kristin on

I am going to have to agree with FH on this one, and I am speaking from experience. Domestic Violence occurs in the HOME most of the time. Women won’t and don’t carry around a pepper spray in their own home since that is supposed to be their safe haven. Coming from an abusive marriage, these don’t really help matters. And, unless you are walking around armed and ready, the likelihood of using the spray correctly in an attack is slim to none. If you want to support anti-domestic violebnce campaigns, donate money or clothes directly to shelters. OPften when women leave the home, they are taking their children and start all over with nothing but the clothes on their backs.

Angela Aldatz on

I own a PEPPERFACE palm defender and the way they are designed is to keep them FROM being used on yourself. They are next to impossible to do so! Not only that but they are EXTREMELY handy as well as fashionable! This PREVENTION PURPLE auction is a fabulous cause and only makes us women in the world one step closer to being safer with each person that helps promote it! I’m IN!

Julie on

If you carried it in your hand as you walked outside, especially at night, I imagine it could be useful.

Julie on

Kristin, I’m sorry for what you went through. But I think these sorts of products are aimed more at women worried about being attacked when jogging, walking to their cars, walking their dog, etc. Abusive spouses are a whole other issue that needs to be dealt with in a separate way.

Kristin on

Julie- I agree with you wholeheartedly. Which is why I don’t think they should be intended for domestic violence, a different issue all in itself. Self defense is the key to protecting yourself from ANY violence.

Angela A. on

I disagree. I don’t think we can eliminate products like this from being useful even in domestic violence situations. Each case is different, and I’m sure this would save women (and children! in certain domestic violence situations. The bottom line is is to: PROMOTE AWARENESS of this issue and help to bring an END to it – in ALL aspects!

R on

Pricy. The ones who need that pepperspray the most probably can’t even afford that.

Angela A. on

At what cost is SAFETY worth? We spend $50-500 on shoes/etc, but can’t justify the cost of our own safety?
That doesn’t make sense – and that is where we need to look at it from ALL angles. I tell you what: I’d buy my 2 teenage daughters PEPPERFACE palm defenders MUCH faster than anything off the rack that they currently want! Plus:This is a ONETIME investment. This isn’t something you have to buy every season!KEY WORD: Investment. Safety is an investment worth investing in!

Mary on

R, are you kidding me? Any woman, regardless of status, income, or race, can be attacked at ANY time. Every female should learn how to protect themselves. Pepper spray is an excellent way to do this and is a much better alternative than, say, carrying a handgun in your purse.

faith on

i don’t know why people are attacking R. all she did was point out that these particular pepperspray devices are pricey. this company is not the only one that makes them though, and i would venture to say that there are affordable ones out there. come on, this is about combating domestic violence, not eachother.

FH on

The women who spoke about owning pepper spray and spoke about how it made them ‘feel safe’ made my point for me. They make you ‘feel safe.’ They provide a false sense of safety. If used correctly and in time to thwart an attack, can it work? Certainly. But ask any cop their opinion on pepper sprays (regardless of brand) and you will learn much about how often theses devices are used against the woman to disable her, or how often cops find these buried in the bottom of a victim’s handbag. Also, TS, you are 100% incorrect, most women never see their attacker coming, as they are usually grabbed from behind. Ask most victims of random acts of violence they all say the same thing “I never saw it coming, I never saw him until it was too late.” Its one thing to have a false sense of security, its quite another to be able to truly defend yourself.

If you are looking for a product that really can help you that will thwart an attack and draw a LOT of attention to you, I highly recommend personal alarms. These can be clipped to your pants and all you need to do is push a button. These alarms emit an absolute ear-piercing sound that usually can cause an attacker to retreat in pain, or at the very least draw so much attention to you the attacker will flee. Attackers want an easy target. Which again is why they use surprise to their advantage and attack you from behind. These are much more effective and easy to use, regardless of which angle you are attacked, you have time to push a button. Not only do they make noise but they flash a bright light, which will make it easy for bystanders to see you in the dark and provide help.

I speak from experience ladies, I once believed in the power of pepper spray and carried it too, in my hand. One night I was walking home and was attacked from behind. Even though I was fully aware of my surroundings, not on my cell phone, not listening to an iPod, knew where I was going, walked with confidence and had my keys ready, I never saw this guy until it was too late. He saw me though, and my pepper spray in my hand. The first thing he did when he attacked me from behind is knock it out of my hand and I was completely defenseless. Or so he thought. What saved me was I had taken a few self-defense classes and I knew how to defend myself from an attack from behind. I grabbed onto the arm that was around my neck and kicked backwards and down on his shin with my heel as hard as I could. If you have ever been kicked in the shin you know how much this hurts. He screamed and let go long enough for me to turn around and attack. Yes, I attacked him. Always remember ladies NEVER run from an attacker. Standing you have a chance of protecting yourself. Once you turn your back all it takes is one good push to lay you flat on your stomach and you are done. Even if he has a gun or a knife. In a public area, he doesn’t want to risk drawing attention, again, they want an easy target. Attack and scream FIRE! Screaming ‘help’ or ‘rape’ doesn’t work, because most people unfortunately won’t help you. But shouts of ‘fire’ bring people to their windows because they want to make sure its not their home on fire. I turned on him and kicked again. Then I gave him the ‘ear clap’ slapping at his ear with a cupped palm, hard and fast. This can rupture an ear drum and it causes considerable pain. That was enough for him, he took off. Later when giving his description to the officer who took my statement, I told him about the pepper spray, and he said that is typical and that I was lucky to not have it used on me.

I’m not against self defense ladies… I’m agains false sense of security. Educate yourselves, and protect yourselves!

HM on

Wow FH, you sure have some strong opinions. Maybe you should take your own advice in the last sentence of your post. Educate yourself. I own a Pepperface palm defender. It is COMPLETELY different from old style pepper sprays! It is virtually impossible to spray yourself because of the design. You hold it in your fist, not like a mini can of hairspray, so it won’t get knocked out of your hand. On contact it causes an attacker’s eyes to swell shut. How far do you think an attacker is going to get with their eyes swollen shut? It gives you the ability to get away and get the cops there. Your preferred method lets the attacker run away to find their next victim!!! That’s part of the problem, these guys aren’t getting caught. Maybe you should visit their website and see what this product is really all about. I actually agree with you about the old style pepper sprays. This one really is different!

GW on

The Pepperface units worn are on a keychain, or lanyard around your neck or wrist. I put my key ring in my hand when walking from the office/store to my car. I typically flip open the safety device during the walk and lock it down again once I get in the car. Never had to use it but that’s a good thing.

Angela A on

It seems everyone has gone completely off course here – what we are talking about is the 2007 Prevention Purple Celebrity Auction that PEPPERFACE is proudly a sponsor of. This company is promoting and providing a fabulous updated version of the old pepperspray. It’s easier to use, safer, all around better looking AND it is working directly with Project Purple and the National Center on Domestic and Sexual Violence to help raise awareness of our nations crisis with sexual violence against women. This is an EXTRA way to help protect ourselves as women, and obviously, not the only choice out there! All of the points made are totally valid – but instead of questioning them – let’s PROMOTE and HELP SPREAD the WORD! This is for an important cause that affects ALL OF US.

FH on

Gee… sorry I was trying to help women with my post HM. I’m very glad they have improved pepper spray, but this isn’t much different then the one I had, which I carried in my fist, and was on a keychain too, about the exact same size as the one shown here without all the bling. I would love to see it used in action when you are attacked from behind or from the side. It would be interesting to watch you attempt to spray someone in the face that you can’t see. I better get busy informing police officers and self defense trainers across the country that they are wrong to advise women to choose something else other than pepper spray, since the posters on know better than they do.

Project Purple is a great cause…but I dont’ see what is off-topic about sharing my story and what I’ve been told about pepper spray overall. Obviously we have some posters here working either for Pepperface or Project Purple.

FH on

Oh, and HM, I did check out the site before I posted and learned about it. I like the idea of Project Purple, but I am not impressed with the product. Just because its smaller and jeweled doesn’t mean its really a good self defense tool. The one I had was supposed to be the ‘best on the market, recommended by police, the next best thing to Mace’ which is now illegal. My aunt bought it for me and paid big bucks for it since I lived alone in the city. If I had the chance to see the person who grabbed me before he did, I may have had a chance to use it. I apologize for sharing my opinion, but I felt it was important to share an alternative view on the subject.

faith on

FH, you have nothing to apologize for. i’m sorry you had to go through what you did, but i found your actions brave and courageous, and i think that by sharing your story it shows that you really care about this cause, pepperspray or not. i hope that the women who read your advice take it to heart and learn about more than one way to defend themselves.

Angela A. on

Working for neither of these affiliates, I just want to say again, this is a GREAT cause, this is a GREAT product, and I am HAPPY to promote awareness thru projects such as these!
I will certainly be bidding! BE SAFE EVERYONE!

enigma on

I am very glad FH felt enough confidence to share her unfortunate first hand scary experience with all of us here in “off the rack”!!

I agree with faith about FH’s bravery and courageousness!!

I also think faith made a good point, the fact it’s about combating domestic violence, not each other!

I hope none of us ever experiences what FH went through…..FH’s, comments and story SHOULD NOT BE DISREGARDED at all, we, as women should listen to her and should be very THANKFUL for her free advice and natural concern towards other women!!!!

Go FH and GO faith!!!

Cheers and best regards to all!!

JM on

I absolutely agree with FH. I also believe that “Angela A” obviously either works for PepperFace or one of its affiliates. Nobody in their right mind is that overindulged in such a product and goes out of their way to state everything you can read word-for-word on the PepperFace page for yourself. With that said, I think that it is important for us woman to do more than just carry around pepper spray. I carry one myself but I do not rely on just that, you can buy pepper spray anywhere but self-defense and self-awareness is what we should also be focusing on here. Just because I have some spray in my hand doesn’t mean I feel safe. These attackers are way ahead of us…more than likely they’re carrying around pepper spray, guns, knives, stun guns, etc. themselves. We need to be prepared with more than just weapons that we MAY NOT have to time use. I agree with the idea of awareness but its self-awareness that’s important, meaning watching surroundings and training ourselves to protect ourselves even when we have nothing with us and even if you do. Pepper spray, great…but there are a few things about PepperFace that rub me the wrong way. First, they sell their pepper sprays anywhere from $35 to $55 each on their website. Yet, only $1 is contributed to the National Center on Domestic and Sexual Violence. Not only that but they’re crystallized pepper spray sells anywhere from $105 to $295 and you’re telling me that all they can contribute to that is $1??? There is something wrong with that. I don’t know about everyone else here but I’ve always wanted to look chic while being attacked (Joke and not really that glamorous when it happens). Yes, a conversation piece indeed but this is a company who does what any other company out there wants to do…sell their product and make money. I do believe though that if they were so focused on helping woman out when it comes to abuse they would be more focused on contributing rather than glamorizing a product that they sell up to $300 and only donating one single dollar of the sale. Second, why in the world do they have some of these celebrities supporting this cause? Great example…Lindsay Lohan. This is a joke right? She should be more focused on not driving drunk and possibly killing someone on the road and be focused on drug rehab rather than designing a cute little small tube of pepper spray. These celebrities have the money to afford body guards to protect them and obviously while we don’t…we need more than to feel absolutely safe just because we have purchased a product. On the other hand, yes…100% of only the auction sales are contributed to the National Center on Domestic and Sexual Violence but its PR for PepperFace in hopes that it will increase sales for their other products in which only an absolute minuscule amount is donated. Overall, I believe there are better ways to increase awareness rather than just pitching a product just to make a profit.

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