Is alcohol odorless, and if so, why after one drinks alcohol someone can smell it on them?

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  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    Most alcohol is not odourless. The preservatives, brewing processes, colourings and extra ingredients to make the end product react together and that creates the smell. However, alcohol can be odourless if the refining process is kept to a minimum, which is why vodka usually has no smell. It's the only drink you are not supposed to be able to smell when someone has been drinking it, but I don't find this is always true.

  • 1 decade ago

    Even pure 200 proof alcohol is not odorless. I work with the stuff in a lab, and it has a definite smell. However, when spilled, it quickly vaporizes, leaving no odor behind.

    Consumable alcohol has different odors because of the ingredients within the drink--grapes, barley, etc.

    Source(s): Life experience.
  • 7 years ago

    There are no receptors for -OH groups in the nose making alcohols odorless to humans. What you smell are the other ingredients

    Source(s): bio major
  • 1 decade ago

    alcohol is not odorless. Take a big whiff of a vodka bottle, that's what you smell like the day after.

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  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    It's God's way of making sure we get busted for drinking.

    As the alcohole metabolizes is makes people have a sick/sweet breath like that of a person with hypo-glycemia.

    I wish I could make it STOP!!!!!!

  • 1 decade ago

    People can smell it on you because it enters your blood stream. Your blood is then sent to your lungs. Your lungs are saturated with blood so that the blood can get oxygenated. Naturally when you exhale at this point your exhale is going to smell like alchohol.

  • 1 decade ago

    Pure alcohol does not smell.The odor come from the flavorings . malt, fruit...

  • 1 decade ago

    I can smell it on people

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