Can Coffee Perfume Replace Your Daily Cup Of Coffee?

There's not much else that comes close to a morning ritual that involves coffee. It's one of the few things that inspires you to slide your legs off the bed, stand up, and actually get about your day. And if you're like most coffee lovers, you've probably discovered a unique secret to making the perfect cup of coffee just the way you like it. 

Once you've got your steaming cup of coffee in hand, you sit down with it and breathe in its aroma. This is a special part of the morning ritual. According to science, breathing in the scent of coffee is as important as actually drinking the beverage when it comes to alertness and productivity. A study involving 114 undergraduate business students found that the group that followed an algebra test in a coffee-scented room performed better than the second group that took the test in a room without the fragrance. Lead researcher of the study, Adriana Madzharov, told Science Alert, "It's not just that the coffee-like scent helped people perform better on analytical tasks, which was already interesting. But they also thought they would do better, and we demonstrated that this expectation was at least partly responsible for their improved performance."

Does this mean that there's hope for all those caffeine addicts out there who are trying to cut down on the habit? Is all you need a whiff of a coffee-scented candle or perfume in the morning to keep you fresh and alert during the day? 

The answer might be disappointing

According to Marissa DeSantis from Well+Good who took it upon herself to give this theory a go, replacing your morning cup of coffee with just the scents of coffee didn't really cut it for her. She did, however, note that the experience of trying different coffee-scented products for five days — scrubs and perfumes — was a pleasant one. You only have to take a look at the myriad coffee-perfumed products in the market to understand why. There are candles, essential oils, body mists, perfumes, and more. And they smell amazing.  

"I wasn't particularly tired or energized, but smelling coffee-like scents definitely wasn't a replacement for drinking actual coffee," DeSantis wrote. In the study involving the business students, the power of a placebo effect is apparent too. The coffee-perfumed room made the students think they'd perform better which could have influenced the results. DeSantis approached the experiment knowing that abstaining from caffeine would be particularly challenging for her. 

What, then, are some effective things to replace your daily cup of coffee with? 

These beverages are good coffee-substitutes

Kombucha, black tea, green tea, lemon water, and smoothies are all good substitutes for coffee, according to Newsweek. So are chai, chicory coffee, golden milk, and matcha tea. 

Drinking coffee every day does a lot to your body, and it's always good to minimize consumption of the beverage. As cardiologist Edo Paz told Bustle, "At its core, tea leaves contain more caffeine than coffee beans. However, once both are brewed, the amount of caffeine in coffee exceeds that in tea." While moderate levels of caffeine are not bad for you, lots of it can disrupt sleep and even cause headaches. Green tea may not have the pleasing aroma you crave in the morning, but it's packed with a higher dose of antioxidants that are good for your body, according to Paz. In addition to receiving a boost of energy for the day, you'll be adding a layer of protection to your body. 

If your love for all things coffee is too strong and you don't want to replace your daily cup with something else just yet, try sticking to just the morning dose. And if you're tempted to make yourself another at work, try reaching for a matcha tea or green tea instead. Perhaps light a coffee-scented candle while you drink it so you receive the placebo effects from the scent.