Collection: Never a Rough Puff
Tobacco companies have been advertising their particular brands as “mild” since the first half of the 20th century. From the start, smokers were aware that smoking irritated the throat, causing discomfort or “smoker’s hack.” Though serious health effects of smoking, like lung cancer, emphysema, and heart attack, were not yet identified in the first half of the 20th century, the seemingly benign side effects such as sore throat and cough were certainly bothersome to smokers.
To counteract the sentiment that certain cigarettes were “harsh” and thereby worse for your health, cigarette companies began touting “mildness,” a ploy that has lasted well into the 21st century. By reassuring smokers that a particular brand was “mild,” tobacco companies succeeded in hooking consumers and preventing them from quitting.
After appealing to smokers’ desires for throat ease for years, the American Tobacco Company issued the penultimate mild campaign in 1950: “There’s never a rough puff in a Lucky.” The campaign included celebrity testimonials – an advertising technique Lucky Strike perfected – but also urged consumers to “let your own taste and throat be the judge.” Like many of Lucky’s advertisements at the time, this campaign claimed that Lucky Strikes were “free and easy on the draw,” clearly a synonym for mild.