when you look this word up in the dictionary it is defined in two main ways…
– the perfect or typical specimen
– a constantly recurring symbol or motif in literature, painting, etc.
So I began to brainstorm and think of all the most infamous smokers in popular culture; I began to think of all the “perfect” cigarette smokers. To be frank, a lot of these archetypal cigarette smokers were women. For years fashion models have been chain smoking their lives away alongside actresses. Women play a vital role in the world of cigarette-culture as much as men have. For every male celebrity that smokes cigarettes there is a female celebrity that smokes cigarettes.
So why do we keep referring to Marlboro Sky as Marlboro’s “cool & hip little brother“?
My approach would be to change this attitude; that the cigarette does not just belong to a “he” and make sure we understand that “she” can smoke it as well. There are so many women in popular culture that are almost defined by their smoking habit.
Most famous would be Carrie Bradshaw, played by Sarah Jessica Parker, from Sex and the City. In one episode Bradshaw goes to vacation in Los Angeles only to discover that unlike New York, Los Angeles is not a smoker friendly city. At one point she becomes desperate to smoke a cigarette that she disregards the no-smoking rule and lights one up on the balcony of her non-smoking hotel. As she is cooling her heels and taking a drag a random man who was staying in the floor above yells “This floor is non-smoking!” and she politely responds with “I have an addiction, Sir!”
One could argue that Carrie Bradshaw is not a good example because she is a character from a television series, what about real life?
Kate Moss is rarely seen not smoking, she is always photographed with a cigarette in-hand. This supermodel is notorious for her hazy habit, but she isn’t the only one who smokes. All models around the world chain smoke like crazy and the joke used to be that a model’s diet consisted only of cigarettes & champagne. As a model myself, from experience, the newer models don’t really smoke at all but models who have been working for a long time have picked up the habit from older models. It is like an heirloom, and the honor of smoking keeps getting carried down from one generation of models to another generation of models. It is an easy way for cigarette companies, like Marlboro, to nonchalantly place themselves in fashion magazines. Almost all candid paparazzi photos of models show them smoking. Now imagine if we placed a Marlboro Sky cigarette in the hands of supermodels like Kate Moss, Natalia Vodianova or Jessica Stam?
Not to mention, smoking for women used to imply a sense of class.
Thanks to programs like D.A.R.E. and all the anti-smoking commercials, cigarettes are seen as a trashy accessory. Old Hollywood actresses would smoke cigarettes because smoking was a “thing” of their generation, it was before all these laws began to regulate the appearance of smoking on screen and in commercials. So my approach would be to bring back this sense of classiness by show-casing this cigarette as a feminine tool as well. This is not the typical cigarette you see anti-smoking commercials bashing, this cigarette is electronic & carries less toxins. So women can return to their glamorous ways before all the pesky regulations got in the way.
We must not restrict ourselves because we may have an even better time selling the Marlboro Sky cigarette to women who are the CEO’s of their own company or to Mom’s who are trying to quit as opposed to hipster boys.