How To Identify Cocaine: Everything You Need To Know

By Charlotte Miller

Cocaine is the second most popular drug in The United States, right behind marijuana. Although illegal in all 50 states, Oregon decriminalized cocaine in hopes of providing better care in the form of rehab for residents who are addicted. Decriminalization means that the drug is still illegal, but when possessing small amounts for personal use, you are not subject to arrest and jail time.  

Would you recognize cocaine if you found it? Can you answer the question, what does cocaine smell like? Have you ever tasted cocaine? For more information on identifying cocaine, continue reading some tips below.

Common Cocaine Forms

The first image that comes to mind for most people is snowy white powder. This type of cocaine is snorted through the nostrils through a straw or an empty ink pen. Occasionally, you will see a tiny spoon used to hold a “bump” of powdered cocaine up the nose, and it is inhaled directly from the spoon. This form of cocaine is water-soluble and can be mixed with water to inject the liquid directly into your veins.

The other common type of cocaine is in rock form or crack cocaine. Making crack involves mixing water and baking soda, or occasionally ammonia, and boiling until the cocaine begins clumping into a solid rock. With the water then drained from the solids, what remains is a chunk of rock cocaine for smoking. The purest crack cocaine is off-white, though crack that has been adulterated with other substances to bulk up the product can appear beige, pinkish, or even almost brown, depending on the additive.

The Smell of Cocaine

Are you still wondering what does cocaine smell like? Cocaine does have a faint odor of flowers in its pure form, according to some users. It is more likely that you will find cocaine that has been “stepped on” with additives to bulk out the weight of the product. Powdered cocaine can be combined with common household ingredients such as baking soda, talcum powder, laxatives, or even dewormers for veterinary use. Any of these ingredients will factor into the smell of the final product.

Crack, when smoked, is reported to smell much differently than its powered cousin and is often described as acrid, pungent, burning chemicals, or burnt plastic. The vapors emanating from crack when smoked are potent and hard to miss.

Tasting Cocaine

Cocaine is very bitter. Even after being mixed with other substances, cocaine retains its bitter properties and will numb the surface of your mouth and tongue. You may taste other chemicals depending on the additives used to bulk out the cocaine, but the dominant taste will be bitterness.

Knowledge Is Key

Knowing what you are looking for when searching for cocaine is the biggest obstacle. When you follow the tips above for recognizing what does cocaine smell like, as well as how it looks and tastes, you will be able to recognize this dangerous drug when you see it. As a safety precaution, use gloves when handling unknown substances and do not accidentally inhale the suspected drug.