This Is What It Means When You See A Man With One Painted Fingernail.

By Sommer Rockhill /
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Men showing their single polished fingernail

This trend for men only, started in Australia and has now made its way to the States. The colour of the paint and the choice of nail is irrelevant, it all represents the same. The movement began with Elliot Costello, after meeting Thea, a little girl, on his travels around the world to help underprivileged areas with Hagar International. While in Cambodia the little girl and Elliot became friends doing unlikely things together, things little Thea loved, like painting her nails. She painted one of his nails as they chatted about her daily struggles and her life. It was then that he learned about her being sexually abused. He told her then and there that he would keep his nail painted as a remembrance of her, and her pain.



Unnamed man showing his single polished nail for a reason

Filled with ideas and inspired to make change after his experience with Thea, Elliot came up with The Polished Man Project. The idea behind it is that men are encouraged to paint one fingernail for a week, this single nail is representative of the 1 in 5 children who fall victim to sexual abuse.


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