Starbucks Customers Duped into Ordering a Made-Up 'Under the Sea Refresher'

Starbucks customers have been duped into ordering a fictional "new" drink at the coffee chain thanks to a viral video.

The "Under the Sea Refresher" has become the latest TikTok drink order at Starbucks, but it's left customers feeling embarrassed rather than thirst-quenched.

A viral video posted in December by a user called Hannah Galligan urged customers to "run, don't walk" to their nearest Starbucks to order a drink called the "Under the Sea Refresher."

With a bright blue color, the "Under the Sea Refresher" contains gummy worms at the bottom. The video gained over 13 million views and 1.1 million likes, meaning, unsurprisingly, viewers wanted to try it for themselves.

Various videos followed on the app, similarly racking up views and appearing to show people trying out the drink. TikTok user @arnienegrete filmed himself "ordering" the drink out of his car window, insinuating that he was in a drive-thru, before being handed one through the window. "That looks so cool," he said, covering the label on the cup.

@harrisontjames also filmed himself "ordering" a venti cup of the drink in a drive-thru. "It tastes like blue raspberry and super sugary but it's not bad," he noted.

Even Starbucks baristas joined in on the effort, sharing videos of them with the blue drink, claiming the "Under the Sea Refresher" is "so good."

As shown by those who really did try it though, the "Under the Sea Refresher" doesn't actually exist. The order is actually a trick so successful it could have been thought up by Ashton Kutcher and MTV, as TikTok users find themselves embarrassed after trying to order the concoction.

Kristen Beamer, @marleysroselife, documented her failed attempt at ordering the drink on January 3 with her young daughter who spotted it online. "Polly said this is what she wants, the 'Under the Sea Refresher'," she explained.

The mom shared an image of the original TikTok video, writing: "I should have known at this point."

With her daughter, Beamer visited a Starbucks in a Krogers, before sharing the disappointing result to her TikTok. "Polly had really good advice. We should have read the comments first," she joked. "So they were really good sports about it, but it was a little embarrassing."


I will do more research next time before I walk right up & place an imaginary order😂😂 #starbucksdrinks #starbucks #mrytlebeach #vlog #emberrassing #Embarrassed

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Another mom, @daviscleaned, similarly visited a Starbucks drive-thru to order the TikTok drink after being asked to do so by her daughter, only to be told by a barista: "Mam i'm afraid that's a joke drink that was made on TikTok, it's actually made with cleaning solution."

A representative for Starbucks confirmed to Newsweek that the drink does not exist, and that what's shown in the videos is far from endorsed: "This beverage is not on the Starbucks menu or available as a customization. We are not aware of any incidents in which a customer was intentionally or unintentionally served one of these beverages. We have rigorous food safety procedures in place, and use of a chemical in a beverage violates these standards."

For videos of the drink shared by Starbucks employees, the cleaning solution used in the stores is reportedly what is shown.

Barista @2nerdy4freaky shared the secret on January 27 in a TikTok video, explaining: "What you are looking at here is not a refresher, it's a cleaner," she said. "It kind of smells like Windex, either way this is essentially poison."

"If any barista shows you a video of this, it's cleaner," she added.

One barista, for example, took to TikTok to fuel the joke, instructing people that the reason they could not fulfill the order was that they were simply ordering it wrong. "Y'all just keep ordering it iced and it's a hot drink so it confuses new people," they claimed.


Barista tip on how to order - Can I get a venti hot under the sea refresher over ice? #starbucks

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In the video, they poured cleaner straight into an iced cup, making a vibrant blue liquid. The post gained over 5 million views, as the barista claimed it was only available at a single Florida location.

As suggested by many TikTok users, the ingredients used in the very first "Under the Sea Refresher" were actually Sprite, Gatorade and gummy worms—but ordering this at a Starbucks will still get you nowhere.

"I hate to break if to y'all, but the Under the Sea Refresher, isn't real, stop ordering it, please and also stop getting mad when we tell you it's not real, because we don't have gatorade, we don't have sprite and we sure as hell don't have gummy worms," warned a barista, @slythera1308, on TikTok.

Update 02/18/22, 3:58 a.m. ET: This article was updated to include comment from Starbucks.