By now, most of us know that cigarettes are bad. If you still believe that they aren’t, you are either in denial, or you’ve been living under a rock for the past few decades. As far as I know, people typically do everything they can to avoid death, so inhaling hundreds of cancer-causing chemicals just isn’t the best idea.

But back in the day, we didn’t have as much information about cigarettes as we do now. For that reason, advertisements for these products were actually pretty insane. Have a look at some of the craziest things cigarette companies have ever said to sell cigarettes.

1. Heal your throat pain by dousing your throat with chemicals!

Cigarette companies used to fight over which brand caused the least throat pain. But they all caused throat pain…because they were all cigarettes.

2. They’ll cure what ails you.

There was a time when it was believed that cigarettes could help cut healing time in half.

3. Kids love them!

This ad shows a child smoking, and the parents aren’t upset at all. In fact, they seem to think it’s pretty funny.

4. There are lighter options.

There was a time when Marlboro advertised their light cigarettes as being “healthy.” Sure, they may have been a bit better for you than regular cigarettes, but they were still cigarettes.

5. Ladies just can’t get enough of the dainty ones!

Virginia Slim cigarettes were marketed toward women, and were advertised as being able to help you stay thin.

6. They’ll help you get rid of those nasty flu symptoms.

In this ad, it states that smoking can help relieve the pains of asthma, coughing, hay fever, the flu, and shortness of breath…which were all probably caused, at least in part, by smoking.

7. Okay, they’re not so great, but these filters make them less terrible!

After a while, it became known that cigarettes were dangerous and unhealthy. The introduction of filters allowed advertisers to say that cigarette smoke could be healthy if properly filtered before inhalation. Which is a lie.

8. They’ll help calm those nerves!

Many people still believe this today, but in reality, the chemical compounds in tobacco and nicotine are stimulants. They’re doing the complete opposite of helping you relax.

9. Digest unhealthy cheesecake with some unhealthy cigarettes!

Some ads that ran in the 1930s claimed that cigarettes could aid in digestion.

10. Ladies love it when you blow smoke at them!


11. You’ll never feel tired again.

Back in the day, cigarettes were advertised as being able to keep people awake and alert…which totally refutes the claim that they have a calming effect.

12. They make wonderful birthday gifts!

Some companies even suggested passing down the deadly habit to your children! Heartwarming.

13. If your doctor does it, then it’s fine.

Doc loves Camel, so you should too.

These advertisements explain why much of my grandparents’ generation suffered such awful ailments. Companies clearly showed no regard for their consumers back then, but fortunately, times have changed. Cigarette packages are even printed with health and safety warnings today. It’s crazy what people will do for the almighty dollar.

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