Do you get drunk faster drinking through a straw? Myth or Fact?

Do you get drunk faster drinking through a straw? Myth or Fact?

Do you get drunk faster drinking through a straw? There are many questions related to cocktail straws that we will address.

Straw in a drink

Whether it's a sweet mixed cocktail, a glass of favorite wine, or a cold brew, nothing lightens a boring night than drinks with friends. And of all the available options, it seems like many drinkers' glassware of choice is a nice red solo cup and tall straw. This fact bears the question: does drinking through a straw cause one to get drunk faster?

Girl with a cocktail straw

There are two main arguments to why drinking through a straw will get you drunk faster:

One obvious and one not-so-obvious.

Firstly, people usually drink at a faster pace while drinking through a straw than drinking normally. This likely due to a person’s comfort and entertainment that comes with straw-using. After all, most people tend to underestimate the amount of liquid they consume through a straw than through conventional drinking methods. And since straw-drinkers consume more alcohol in a shorter period of time, it stands with logical reasoning that they would get drunk faster.

While there have been no major scientific studies on this "straw theory," there are conceptual science theories behind the notion that using a straw might quickly increase your level of intoxication. According to the second theory, sources say a straw is like a vacuum system. When we inhale, muscles expand the lungs by pulling on it, creating a vacuum through the increased lung volume. This vacuum acts as a negative pressure source, pulling any fluid towards it, such as oxygen and liquids. This is the mechanism by which the drink is propelled from your glass to your mouth. Because the liquid has gravity acting on it, the pressure pulling on it is greater than the force of gravity, meaning that the liquid moves much faster in straw than when consumed regularly.

Another factor is that the vapors of alcohol are formed directly in our lungs as we pull air through. Especially with the idea that vapors form faster in a vacuum, it makes clear sense that the indirect consumption of alcohol through your lungs also plays a role when using a straw. Because of this additional source, it grants a faster buzz than expected.

Though these ideas may seem rational, scientific research is still out determining the truth. Nevertheless, drinking through straws has other benefits, such as avoiding decay from sugary drinks and avoiding wine stains on those pearly whites.


Several people have stated that drinking through a straw will get you drunk faster than drinking without one. We learned about two theories. First, where people usually drink quicker while drinking through a straw than they would if they were drinking normally. The second is based on the Straw theory which states that in each inhale, we cause the alcohol to rush in at a faster rate, with oxygenated vapors playing an additional role. While there is still ongoing research and debate on these theories, using a straw maybe something to use to get a faster buzz. If you are looking to slow down intoxication, pacing may be something to consider when you reach for a glass with a straw.

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