“Cigarettes are like girls. The best ones are thin and rich.” American Tobacco Company advertising slogan for a brand of thin cigarettes like Virginia.
“As it is often the case, being stylish implies to hold the weight down and to remain physically fit. Not surprisingly, the people to look up to as models are sexy and self assure people and consists at least of socializing with sophisticated friends.” Philip Morris, 1993
“VSLM Creative Strategy: To convince fashionable, modern, independent and self-confident women aged 20-34 that by smoking VSLM, they are making better/more complete expression of their independence.” Philip Morris, 1991.
About 75% of young women (16-24 years old) in the United States don’t smoke.
About 91% of women in California don’t smoke.
Despite recent declines in tobacco use nationwide, a quarter of young women (16-24 years old) are smokers.
Perhaps more alarming, although 83% said of young women believe they can quit smoking, and 60% tried to quit at least once in 2002, less than 3% succeeded in quitting smoking for at least a year.
Women have a more difficult time quitting smoking than men.
Women have lower quitting rates than men, and young women aged 12-24 are more likely to report being unable to cut down on smoking than young men the same age.
Tobacco companies using the image of smoking being tied to independence, stylishness, weight control, sophistication and power continues today in the advertisements running in many popular women’s magazines.
There are two main types of cigarettes marketed to women, female brands and dual sex brands.
Female brands, like Virginia Slims, Capri, Misty, and now Camel No. 9, are marketed directly to women using feminine images. Dual sex brands, like Marlboro and Camel, are marketed to women with independent and fun-loving imagery.
As with men, smoking by women is strongly linked to heart disease and lung cancer, but women smokers also face increased risks of cervical cancer and osteoporosis.
Women who stop smoking greatly reduce their risk of dying prematurely. The relative benefits of quitting are greater when women stop smoking at younger ages, but quitting is beneficial at all ages.
Smoking is the primary cause of death among women in the U.S. About 178,000 American women will die from tobacco-related disease this year.