Sometimes branding on certain products can be confusing, especially when it comes to alcoholic beverages and energy drinks.
Even the labels can be wrong—beverages advertising themselves as alcohol-free might still have trace amounts of alcohol in them.
One Australian student studying in America said he learned this the hard way with energy drink brand Celsius and alcoholic beverage Twisted Tea.
In a video that has drawn over 435,000 views on TikTok, @tiktakmatoney says he purchased a six-pack of Celsius, not understanding that he was purchasing an energy drink. He was only mildly surprised that he was not carded for them.
“I’ve had it all the way up to here with the way that America packages their drinks,” he says in the video. “Tell me why the first time I wanted to use my fake I.D. in America because for some reason their drinking age is 21, I found these Celsiuses. I was like, ‘These look interesting. Why don’t I buy this,’ and I went to the cash register and I was like, ‘Oh my God. They didn’t even I.D. me.'”
It was not until he had already drunk five of the cans that someone pointed out he was drinking caffeine and not alcohol.
“I spent that night drinking like—I had like five Celsiuses because it came in like a pack of six or something,” he says in the video. “I feel absolutely nothing, and then someone’s like, ‘Well, what have you been drinking?’ I was like, ‘These new Celsiuses I found.’ They’re like, ‘You know that has no alcohol in it right?'”
He pointed out that the branding for the energy drink had very little difference from something like a Twisted Tea, which he mistakenly drank on the way to class one morning.
“You’re telling me this, peach vibe, has no alcohol in it?” he says. “But I’ve encountered the same issue on the other hand as well. I remember it was 10 a.m., right before I’m about to go to class, and I was hanging out at my friend’s dorm, and I asked if I could have a drink or something I could just take to class with me and I’ll pay him back, and he’s like, ‘Yeah, take anything from the fridge.’ So I grab a Twisted Tea.”
@tiktakmatoney I know its my fault though #fyp ♬ original sound – Mahoneyoneyoney
The main difference between the two drinks that was apparent to him, he said, was the “hard” label on the Twisted Tea—which he did not understand.
“Yes, I know that it says hard iced tea, but I didn’t know what ‘hard’ meant for drinks,” he says. “Am I missing something?”
The Daily Dot has reached out to @tiktakmatoney via Instagram direct message regarding the video.
Several commenters expressed concern over his consumption of five Celsius beverages, a total of 1,000 mg of caffeine, much higher than the 400 mg max recommended by the Food and Drug Administration.
“YOU DRANK 5 CELSIUS??? AND LIVED?” one commenter wrote.
“If I drank 5 Celsiuses my heart would stop,” another commented.
“Excuse me but sir how did your heart not explode?!” a third added.
Others shared that they similarly thought Celsius was an alcoholic beverage, as well as other soft drinks with atypical branding.
“The first time a saw a liquid death can I was so shocked because it was on the water aisle and not in the beer fridge,” one commenter wrote.
“The first time I saw someone drinking Celsius in class I was SHOCKED,” another said.
“My nephew once bought a twisted tea at a gas station thinking it was like an Arizona tea,” a further user shared.