How To Get Rid of Alcohol Breath

We may not be able to help with your alcohol breath but we can help with your hangover.

While we may enjoy the feeling our boozy beverages give us, no one enjoys the smell of alcohol breath. 

In this article we will show you what can you do about your alcohol breath.

But first, let's get a better understanding of why alcohol makes your breath smell.

How to get rid of alcohol breath infographic


Why Does Alcohol Make Your Breath Smell?

When alcohol is absorbed into the body, it is metabolized differently from other food substances.

This absorption is done quickly because the body considers alcohol to be a toxin. Once it is metabolized, the lungs feel the impact which results in a boozy smell.

After alcohol is processed, it has a sweet and distinct odor. This is true whether you are drinking a glass of wine, beer, or whiskey.

Now that you understand why alcohol makes your breath smell bad, let's check out ways to prevent it. 

How To Prevent Alcohol Breath

  1. Drink Moderately

Moderate drinking can help lessen the smell of alcohol. Stick to a few shots or bottles of beer (that means no drinking games).


Allow your body time to metabolize the alcohol before consuming more. The rough estimate, depending on weight and age, is about one drink per hour.

Give yourself time in between each drink to sip water to stave off hangovers and to keep your breath from smelling like a bottle of ethanol.

  1. Avoid Mixtures

Each type of alcohol has a unique odor. A mixture of different alcoholic beverages can make the overall odor worse while sticking to one particular brand will make your breath smell less.

Mixed drinks are usually paired with some sweet liquid such as soda, juice, or simple syrup. Alcohol already contains sugar, but the excess increases the likelihood of foul breath. You may think the sweet taste would cover the smell of the liquor, but bacteria loves sugar and it will multiply more aggressively in your mouth.

Now that you know how to prevent alcohol breath, lets examine what you can do if you drank too much and your breath smells.

How to Get Rid of Alcohol Breath

  • Use Mouthwash

teeth with mouthwash

Dentists are used to the saying: Floss, Brush, and Irrigate (FBI). The most important part at this point is the irrigation. Let's assume you flossed and brushed your teeth; you will need to irrigate.

You can use a mouthwash from reputable brands like Colgate or Listerine. What is most important is to ensure that the mouth is rinsed for 20 seconds. Doing this will help you to get rid of that alcoholic odor and leave behind a desirable and clean scent. This will also help with cleaning your mouth to eliminate bacteria and prevent it from continuing to grow.

  • Brush Your Teeth

Lady brushing her teeth

Brushing your teeth with toothpaste can help reduce the smell of alcohol. At the same time, just like with mouthwash, it disturbs all the bad bacteria and flushes it out.

Make sure to brush your teeth before going to bed after a full night to avoid waking up with an unpleasant taste on your tongue. 

  • Take a Shower or a Bath


Alcohol is absorbed into your lungs which is why you produce an odor from your breath. Your pores also produce an alcoholic scent that can make your body stink.

If your body reeks of alcohol, taking a nice bath or shower will help clean your pores of alcohol and the sweat you build up while drinking. Make sure you soap up to cover up any lingering scent and leave you smelling and feeling fresh and clean. 

  •   Gum

Women blowing a bubble

Gum can only override the smell of alcohol for a short while. While the flavor of gum quickly diminishes it does kill some bacteria, and chewing gum helps produce saliva which does clean and wet the mouth. 

  • Breath Mints

breath mint

Breath mints are a quick and easy fix when you’re pressed for time. You can easily keep a packet of gum or a tin of breath mints in your pocket in case of immediate emergency. 

  • Onion and Garlic


Both onion and garlic produce a powerful smell that radiates from your pores and mouth. You may not want to kiss someone afterwards, but because these smells are also excreted through your pores they combat one strong odor with another.

If you are comfortable with the smell of garlic and onion, you might want to use raw garlic or onion as a remedy. This is not a perfect alternative, but it can help control the odor generated by alcohol.   

  • Coffee


The extreme smell from coffee can override the smell of alcohol. Drinking black coffee with no sugar or milk gives you the best results within seconds. It is recommended to swish the coffee around your mouth before swallowing.

  • Peanut Butter

peanut butter

If you enjoy sweet and creamy peanut butter, then you can use peanut butter to mask the smell that is generated from alcohol. The peanut oil produces a pleasant and stronger smell that overshadows the smell of alcohol.

  • Lemon


Lemon is yet another useful organic remedy you can use to mask alcoholic odors. It contains citrus compounds. These compounds help to reduce the accumulated toxins and the smell of alcohol. The acidity will help cleanse your mouth of germs and flush out your system.

Squeezing a lemon into your water can also help with nausea and make your body more alkaline so the process of metabolizing the alcohol in your system will go much smoother and be less taxing on your body.

  • Parsley

Aromatic herbs like parsley can be used to get rid of alcohol breath. Parsley has antibacterial and deodorizing properties that help eliminate the stench of spirits from your mouth and stomach.

An easy method is to simply eat straight parsley or coriander leaves, or you could cook them up in a dish such as a stir fry or chop it up fresh to garnish a dish with.

  • Mustard

The yellow mustard found in your fridge, or a bar, or a restaurant is a perfect remedy to stave off alcohol breath. This spicy condiment has a sharp smell, which can mask the smell of alcohol.

  • Tomato Juice

Tomato juice is known for its ability to mask the smell of skunk spray. Since it can help eliminate such a vile and overpowering stink, you can be assured that the juice is highly effective at masking alcohol's odor.

  • Drink a Lot of Water

This piece of advice never gets old. We all know how important it is to drink enough water. Drinking alcohol leads to dehydration and once the mouth is dry, it begins to harbor more bacteria, which intensifies bad odors. Sipping water when drinking alcohol will help you stay hydrated. A good rule of thumb is to drink a glass of water with every alcoholic beverage you consume.

Once you are done drinking, do not forget to continue drinking water as doing this will reduce the intensity of a hangover and bad breath.

  • Cinnamon Sticks

Cinnamon sticks are yet another effective natural remedy for bad breath. Cinnamon contains essential oils with antibiotic effects which can help reduce bacteria in the mouth. Cinnamon also has a lovely scent that can cover bad breath that results from alcohol. Cinnamon is great brewed in tea.

  • Use Perfume, Cologne or Deodorants

You can use cologne or perfume on a specific body part to mask the smell of alcohol. While it doesn’t fix the scent of your breath, perfumes and colognes can mask an unpleasant smell. 

Whatever your reason for needing to cover up your alcohol breath, the tips and tricks listed above can be used anytime and anywhere to help you mask the smell.