NightCap was invented in early 2019 by then 16-year-old Shirah Benarde from West Palm Beach, Florida. The idea came to her in a dream after hearing about the horrors of drink spiking from friends who experienced it after going off to college. Fortunately, her friends were okay, but Shirah was determined to come up with a pragmatic solution to this problem to protect her and her friends when they went off to college. She also wanted to make sure the product would be something girls would feel comfortable using. The next morning, she went to her mother’s closet, grabbed a pair of pantyhose, cut them up, and attached them to a scrunchie to create the first NightCap prototype.
Her brother, Michael, 21 at the time, came home from college for the summer and saw the prototype sitting on a table. As someone who had been living on a college campus for four years, he understood how prevalent this problem was — and is. Knowing that there was no product on the market that had been adopted at scale, Michael saw huge potential for NightCap due to its unbeatable convenience and reusability. Together, Michael and Shirah took action and spent the next six months working to bring NightCap from concept to reality.
After completing a successful crowdfunding campaign Shirah and Michael took the idea to market and launched Nightcapit.com in December of 2019. In its early stages, NightCap won multiple awards including Florida State University’s InNOLEvation Challenge, Tallahassee Startup Week’s Annual Pitch Competition, FSU’s Turkey Tank, and FSU’s Jim Moran Micro Grant. NightCap also has been featured on the Fox Business Network, in USA Today, and among many other media outlets. In just two years Shirah and Michael have sold more than 400,000 units in over 40 countries.
Shirah and Michael’s goal is to make NightCap as widely accessible around the world as possible. They are working with bars, clubs, universities, police departments, local governments, non-profits, and others to provide NightCaps to their students / members / customers / citizens. It’s amazing to see what a positive impact this product has had on so many. Shirah and Michael receive 1000’s of dm’s, comments, and reviews from customers describing their experiences with drink spiking and how NightCap products have brought them peace of mind when going out.