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  1. #1

    Default Smell of dollars - real question

    Some time ago, I got e-mail from an editor of men`s journal (Russian edition of Esquire, to be purist).
    He wrote that he found my LiveJournal blog, got interested and want me to write down an article.
    The point was - What is the smell of new $100 banknotes?
    When I realised, that he needs true nose opinion, I just told him that I`m just having my hobby and collection. And he was gone to look for true perfumers... The article is not written and published yet.

    But my point still here. What`s the smell?
    1. Paper.
    It`s made of cotton (75%) and linen (25%) mostly. We can neglect the smell of silk fluorescent things. So - cotton and linen... hmmm... like papyrus in Gucci pour Homme...

    2. Paints.
    It was very difficult. Ingredients, pigments, solvents and even smells of paints are TOP-SECRET of US Treasury!!! Only thing that I found - they use non-drying green ink. So it has to be some mineral or organic oil in it.
    The process of printing was found by Albreht Durer in 1741. Metallograph print. So the paint should be very thick and sticky.

    Well, maybe some other experts could continue?
    Or maybe some people from Treasury just know that - and will be kind enough to share?
    Vetiver The Great!!!

  2. #2

    Default Re: Smell of dollars - real question


    'In one 1985 study done by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration on the money machines in a U.S. Federal Reserve district bank, random samples of $50 and $100 bills revealed that a third to a half of all the currency tested bore traces of cocaine.'

    Here's another:

    Cocaine Contamination of United States Paper Currency
    Jonathan Oyler, William D. Darwin, and Edward J. Cone

    The exchange of illicit cocaine for money by drug dealers is an everyday occurrence in cities in the United States. There is ample opportunity during the exchange, storage, and use of cocaine for paper currency to become contaminated. Because currency is exchanged frequently, it is likely that contaminated currency would be found in common use. We examined ten single dollar bills from several cities in the United States for the presence of cocaine. Individual bills were extracted with methanol (10 mL). Cocaine was purified from the methanol extract by solid-phase extraction (SPE). The SPE extract was analyzed by gas chromatography–mass spectrometry (GC–MS). Standard curves were constructed with new, uncirculated currency. Cocaine was identified qualitatively by full scan and quantitated by selected ion monitoring. Cocaine was present in 79% of the currency samples analyzed in amounts above 0.1 µg and in 54% of the currency in amounts above 1.0 µg. Contamination was widespread and was found in currency from all sites examined. Cocaine amounts were highly variable and ranged from nanogram to milligram amounts. The highest amount of cocaine detected on a single one-dollar bill was 1327 µg. These results indicated that cocaine contamination of currency is widespread throughout the United States and is likely to be primarily a result of cross-contamination from other contaminated currency and from contaminated money-counting machines.

    Journal of Analytical Toxicology, Volume 20, Number 4, July/August 1996, pp. 213-216.

    And there's more!

    'Other drugs detected on dollar bills include methylphenidate (Ritalin, figure 2) and procaine. Procaine is a local anesthetic used by drug dealers as a cocaine adulterant. Substances commonly detected on US bills include nicotine, diethyltoluamide (DEET bug repellent), sunscreen, dioctylphthalate (plasticizer), triethanolamine (from cosmetics) and glycerol and other polyols.'
    Lovesick the wind that carries it

  3. #3

    Default Re: Smell of dollars - real question

    Sorry, I have no idea how cocaine smells like...

    I meant fresh banknotes, Pieter! If they are used - the biggest amount of contamination would be skin oil and all that things...
    Cashiers should not fail to wash their hands - and I believe that they must wash it more properly than bakers or chefs...
    Vetiver The Great!!!

  4. #4

    Default Re: Smell of dollars - real question

    Cocaine has a very unique smell: greenish and, er, quite refreshing. Think Clinique Chemistry. As for 'fresh' money: I believe ink manufacturers actualy add fragant substances to ink in order to enhance the tactile experience of buying and opening a new book or magazine.

    While I do not do cocaine, I do confess to sniffing such publications occasionally; presumably, they're all printed with ink but can smell very different from one another. Since money already has a sweet smell of its own, in theory it shouldn't need such additives. Still, it would be interesting to call a central bank and find out!
    Lovesick the wind that carries it

  5. #5

    Default Re: Smell of dollars - real question

    What essential oils or combination closely resemble the smell of dollars?

    ambergris, vetiver? or is it something synthetic?

  6. #6

    Default Re: Smell of dollars - real question

    I think Hermes Orange Verte smells like brand new, crisp money, mixed with oranges.

  7. #7

    Default Re: Smell of dollars - real question

    Perfumers could copy this easily I think but they're too lazy to do it. Chromatography is a step in the right direction for reverse engineering this.

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