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Anticipatory Breath Spray

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A character believes the time has come for The Big Damn Kiss, possibly the First Kiss with their Love Interest. To make the moment as perfect as possible, the character will check their hair and appearance and spray minty breath freshener into their mouth to chase off any potential halitosis issues before going to the date, or before leaning in to kiss their intended.

This trope is often used comedically, and the character spritzing breath spray is usually rebuffed. Bonus points if said character is an Abhorrent Admirer or Casanova Wannabe, or if they accidentally use perfume, cologne or another product instead of breath spray.

Make-Out Point is a co-trope. A Sister Trope to Anticipatory Lipstick. See also You Need a Breath Mint for other attempts to ward off bad breath.

In Real Life, while minty breath spraying is fine, dentists say that regular flossing, brushing, gentle tongue scraping (with a dental tongue scraper, to get food particles off) and dental visits are other ways to help to get fresher breath. While everyone may have richly aromatic breath after eating a garlic, onion and anchovy pizza, for ongoing or serious bad breath, a dentist or doctor can determine the cause and the appropriate treatment.


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  • A 1970s campaign for the breath spray Binaca actually encouraged the behavior illustrated by this trope.

    Anime and Manga 
  • Ino-Head Gargoyle: Saejima does this before going to Shizuka's apartment, where she promised to "give him an even better present than [a kiss]".

    Asian Animation 
  • In the Simple Samosa episode "Dadi Ke Saath", Samosa brings some foods from the forest to his grandma's house, causing his friends to freak out. One of them, the Party Pizza, uses a pizza sauce breath spray when he comes across Jalebi.

    Comic Books 

    Comic Strips 
  • The Far Side has a dog doing this in one strip. The spray can is labeled "Dog Breath".

    Films — Animated 
  • In The Princess and the Frog, Naveen does this with some perfume that's on the dresser with him after Tiana agrees to kiss him and break the curse.
  • Seen at the start of Shrek 2, when it turns out the narrator is actually Prince Charming. When he talks about how he will kiss the princess to wake her up, he interjects his monologue with a spray.

    Films — Live-Action 
  • Subverted in Dumb and Dumber: Lloyd points the nozzle toward his mouth, but the spray comes out sideways. He's too dumb to realize it and goes for the kiss anyway. The second time it happens he sprays someone in the eye with it. This joke was reused in the sequel Dumb and Dumber To.
  • In the cult classic Naked Killer (1992), a Hong Kong gangster squirts a spray into his mouth before visiting two beautiful women. This puzzles his bodyguards as he apparently used an aphrodisiac instead of a breath spray. "Maybe his tongue needs stiffening!"
  • Nothing but Trouble: Thorne initially orders his driver to take Diane to Atlantic City before he sees her emerge out of the elevator looking all fine. He tells the driver to give him the keys and a dose of his breath spray.
  • Tim Robbins in The Player has one of those little bottles which deposits a drop on your tongue, instead of a sprayer.
  • Inverted in Tootsie where John sprays his mouth after kissing "Dorothy Michaels". He does it straight later.

    Live-Action TV 
  • In one clip of America's Funniest Home Videos, a guy did this (to himself) right after the preacher said he could kiss the bride.
  • In an episode of The Drew Carey Show, Mr. Wick does this before attempting to flirt up some girls, then makes a face as he realizes he grabbed a bottle of cologne.
  • Family Matters: In one episode, during a Dave Koz Concert, Steve and Myra do this just as they're about to kiss.
  • In an episode of Full House, a boy does this to tease Stephanie during a New Year's party after stating an intention to give her a kiss. But as the moment of truth draws near, he starts to lose his nerve. Stephanie then turns the tables on him and even takes it a step further by slowly eating a peach in front of him.
  • In Greek, Dale is about to kiss Casey at their kissing booth, so he takes off his glasses, and spritzes some Binaca...directly into his eyes.
  • In kiddie sitcoms, usually this will be done by the Abhorrent Admirer; for example, Nevel in iCarly.
  • In an episode of The Last Leg, Josh sprays Alex with breath freshener before they kiss.
  • Spoofed in a 2006 Late Night with Conan O'Brien skit in which O'Brien observes Jeff Goldblum "in the wild", having lured him into the studio with an irresistible-to-celebrities salt lick. When a female of the celebrity species (Rachel Dratch) arrives, as part of his preening "the Goldblum" uses breath spray while she's putting on lip gloss.
  • Gene Rayburn would always spritz his mouth with breath spray on Match Game (CBS version) so he could kiss the new female celebrity panelist in the fourth seat on the first day of the week. (Sometimes Richard Dawson would hand the guest a card and ask "have you had any of these diseases?") Averted in 1978 when Valerie Bertinelli sat there; as Valerie was a teenager, Gene politely kissed her on the cheek.
  • Hilariously subverted in an early episode of Mystery Science Theater 3000 where Joel does this...before simply convincing the visitor (Mike Nelson playing Valeria) to leave them alone.
  • An episode of Ned's Declassified School Survival Guide had the lead actor for Romeo and Juliet do this whenever he brought up the eventual kiss with "Juliet," Ned's Love Interest. It became a running gag in that episode.
  • Sonny with a Chance: Done by Marshall (the studio boss) on a date with the studio's teacher in his car on a date at Makeout Point. It's done for comedy, but she's into him as well.
  • In an episode of The Troop, Etienne Leibowitz brags that in every drama club production he gets a kiss. He points out to Haley she will kiss him too, or get blackballed from drama club. Cue breath spray.
  • Wayne Brady pantomimes this pretty much anytime a scene has him as the boyfriend (sometimes girlfriend) of one of the other performers on Whose Line Is It Anyway?.
  • On Ugly Betty: During "Lose the Boss", when Betty is persuading Sofia to talk to Daniel:
    Sofia: *searches through purse, pulls out breath spray, starts coughing*
    Betty: What's wrong?
    Sofia: Perfume.

    Video Games 
  • The King in Battle Chess 4000 gets some out after putting the Queen into a trance...But ends up getting a back-breaking Deadly Hug during their kiss. Checkmate!
  • In Leisure Suit Larry 1: In the Land of the Lounge Lizards, Larry starts the game with breath spray in his inventory and will periodically get suggestions to use it; if you're alone the game will tell you how horrible the inside of your mouth tastes, but if you try talking to a character they'll be put off by your horrible breath and refuse to interact with you until you take care of it.
  • In Reality Fighters, a fighting game exclusive for the PS Vita, there were multiple items one could give their custom characters that allowed them to use unique special moves. One of these items was the Kiss Spray, which had your character use it in their mouth before grabbing their opponent and pulling them down for some smooches. Not the worst way to lose a fight depending on who your opponent is, but given the potential for nightmare-inducing creations that this game has...taking damage from a make out session becomes a lot more justifiable.


    Web Original 
  • Kravitz from The Adventure Zone does a variation of this during "Story and Song". After Taako saves Kravitz from the Astral Plane, he runs over to kiss him. When Kravitz sees Taako running towards him, he cups his hands over his mouth and starts blowing, attempting to warm up his perpetually cold face so the kiss won't be "cold and weird".

    Western Animation 
  • In an episode of 6teen, Jonesy tries this with a bottle of perfume before trying to hit on a girl (He was working at a perfume counter at the time) and ends up regretting it when he finds it tastes terrible.
  • Vlad in Danny Phantom does this when Danny's mum is seemingly flirting with him.
    • And Tucker does it just speculating on the idea of putting his mouth on a girl's. He's talking about mouth-to-mouth resuscitation.
  • In Doug, during a game of truth or dare, Porkchop does this when Pattie is dared to kiss him. Afterwards, Roger does this, only to be disappointed when Pattie dares him to say something nice about Doug.
  • Juandissimo did it to himself, and then to Wanda in an episode of The Fairly OddParents!.
  • Professor Farnsworth on Futurama does this when he thinks aliens are going to force him to mate continuously.
  • In one "Screaming with Binky" quickie on Garfield and Friends (viewable here), Binky the Clown does this right before screaming at a cartoonist.
  • Pepe Le Pew from Looney Tunes would do this on occasion when preparing to kiss the object of his affection, usually a cat with a stripe painted on her back.
  • It was a minor running gag in Madballs: Escape from Orb for the main villain Wolf Breath to use breath spray before barking orders to the other Badballs.
  • Sheldon has done this in My Life as a Teenage Robot at least once.
  • Regular Show: Taken to extreme lengths in the episode "Do or Diaper", where he has to kiss Margaret by Friday at midnight or else where a diaper. To prepare for the kiss, he decides to stuff his mouth with so many breath mints that his breath starts to freeze the environment.
  • Inverted on The Simpsons. Troy McClure and Selma are about to make out, he says "just a sec, babe.", pulls out a spray bottle, and sprays Selma's mouth.
  • SpongeBob does this right when he is about to kiss Sandy at their wedding in "Truth or Square". It turns out afterwards that it was just a play.
  • Robin actually took a hit of breath spray, then shot down the moment himself in Teen Titans: Trouble in Tokyo.
  • Raoul did it before getting a kiss from Browsia on El Tigre.
  • Tiny Toon Adventures: In "Aroma Amore", after being greeted by Fifi La Fume, Furball does this after spitting out a fish he put in his mouth before embracing her with open arms.

    Real Life 


Video Example(s):



Brad clearly sees no problem with the girl he's about to smooch becoming a monster.

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