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Jinx Drinx

Tamper-proof packaging for safer partying

When Maddie Largey and Colin Michael combined forces to start Jinx Drinx, the objective was simple: Create an all-in-one alcoholic beverage that’s portable, can’t be tampered with, and allows people to easily measure their consumption. At college, both of them had seen too many parties with vats of mixed drinks served out of tubs or coolers, unsure of the alcohol content and usually accompanied with rumors of tampering. With their vision in hand, the pair found Zenpack to help them build a whole new beverage product. “They helped us navigate this ambiguously hard process,” Michael said.

The Problem

Largey and Michael were looking for two pieces in their start-up puzzle. The first was someone who could coordinate with manufacturing in Asia. The second was design. The cofounders wanted a pouch with embedded straw for their new spirits brand. This would prevent tampering and spilling, and differentiate it from kids’ drinks pouches and other mixed drinks brands. And they wanted to patent the packaging and own the IP.

“We were not confident whatsoever with the large US manufacturers of pouches—that they would be willing to share the IP or give all of it to us if they had some role in the design process,” said Michael. He said that Zenpack was clear that Jinx Drinx would own the IP of any creation. “I just don’t think there are many people that do what they do.”

The Outcome

The Jinx Drinx cofounders came to Zenpack due to their US headquarters, presence in Asia, and previous work in cannabis and child-resistant packaging. With Largey and Michael’s concepts and Zenpack’s knowhow, the two teams went through countless iterations over a year and a half to create an alcoholic drinks pouch with embedded straw that could be manufactured and filled on existing machinery. “They were extremely flexible, knowledgeable, and allowed us to focus on the other aspects of the business,” Michael said.


There were two main challenges in designing the pouch with the embedded straw: filling ability  and ergonomics. With the straw embedded into the pouch, this left a smaller opening for a filling company to fill it with liquid. Many were already opposed to working with anything that wasn’t standardized, so to make it acceptable for the ones willing to try, the pouch had to be designed with them in mind, including the ability to stand up and the widest opening possible. Additionally, designing the straw into the pouch required its own experiments.

As for ergonomics, the challenge was multifold. Zenpack looked at the social context where these pouches would be used—the party scene—and how it would actually function. While the pouch can stand upright for filling, it is not the type that is normally set down or left unattended. It had to be comfortable for people to hold for 30 minutes, give or take. Zenpack studied the gestures of how people would use it, including the motion of using the straw so it wouldn’t be confused with a kids’ drink, the ease of use and access of it, and how the entire pouch would blend into the party and drinking culture without any awkwardness.


After many iterations and experimenting with the user experience—such as hanging the pouch around your neck like a convention VIP badge—the details of the design came into place. “I would send them ten different drawings at a time, and they’d be like ‘These ones are more feasible,’” Michael said.

Zenpack created a tab that hides the straw, and if the tab is bent or broken, then it’s easy to tell the drink has been tampered with. To hold the straw in place, Zenpack created a channel inside the bag to affix the position and orientation. Around the neck and the pointy end of the straw, a puncture surface was added to allow the straw to break through when the tab is bent and expose the straw. When the straw comes out, the pouch relaxes so liquid doesn’t squirt out. 

On the manufacturing side, Zenpack designed the pouch to eliminate manual processes to enable scaling up later on. It’s made from a combination of plastic (PP and PE) and aluminum. The material thickness was determined for easy puncturing while still providing strength.


The result was a drink pouch that’s tamper-proof, lightweight, and non breakable. It’s also freezable so customers can enjoy a slushy drink rather than just a cold one. The pouch, the design—the complete design sets Jinx Drinx apart. And that all comes from good working relationships. “They feel like legitimate partners,” Michael said. “And that’s not the relationship I have with all my suppliers or partners.”

The pouch won a 2024 iF Design Award in the Alcohol and Spirits Packaging category and is now available for sale around LA. And for Michael and Largey, sourcing from Southeast Asia is now a breeze. “It’s truly insane how flexible Zenpack has been with making this because, I don’t know if you’ve ever tried to source a manufacturer in a foreign country you’ve never been to or don’t speak the language of. It’s a pain.”

Speak with an Expert
True Marker
Diane Von Furstenberg
Assorted BIGFACE Coffee packaging with sleek, modern design, produced by Zenpack