Nina West Debuts ‘Treat Yourself,’ For Gay Men’s HIV Awareness Day

Nina West, Via Facebook

Nina West, a well known drag queen who appeared on RuPaul’s Drag Race, debuted a new  music video today in honor of National Gay Men’s HIV/AIDS Awareness Day.

“Treat Yourself,” a song about knowing your HIV status is presented by OraQuick, the only in-home oral HIV test approved by the Food and Drug Administration. Besides West the video also features choreographer Mark Kanemura, known for his role as a former backup dancer for Lady Gaga and “So You Think You Can Dance” all-star.


“Keeping our community vibrant means owning our health and to do that we should know our HIV status,” West says in the video. “Knowledge is power, and we want to have power, don’t we?” 

The song will be released on iTunes on Oct. 4 with all of the proceeds going to Equitas Health, a full-service, non-profit medical center with multiple locations in Columbus, which is West’s hometown.

West appeared on Season 11 of RuPaul’s Drag Race placing sixth. But West is also well known for her philanthropy. 

The iconic drag queen even got a shout out from progressive firebrand Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who said on Twitter at the time of her elimination from Drag Race: “Just know how important you are to the bigger picture, and I’m so proud of you and your fundamental kindness and goodness. And I’m just really looking forward to watching you grow. You’re amazing, and I’m sad, but I’m excited for you.”


(Nina West Via Facebook)

West has raised more than $2 million for the community and in 2015, she established The Nina West Fund at The Columbus Foundation to support local non-profits that provide services for the LGBT community. 

In 2008 the National Association of People with AIDS launched National Gay Men’s HIV/AIDS Awareness Day to recognize the disproportionate impact of the epidemic on gay men. This year’s theme is “The conversation about HIV is changing.”