Bring back some good or bad memories


November 28, 2014

Pictures of Women Smoking Cigarettes From the 1930s

The cigarette industry began a strong marketing campaign geared toward women beginning in the 1920s in the United States. These campaigns became more aggressive as time has progressed and marketing in general became more prominent. The practice of marketing aimed exclusively at women has continued into the present day and has now expanded globally.

In the early part of the 20th century, the anti-tobacco movement was aimed primarily at women and children. Smoking was considered a dirty habit and smoking by women was seriously frowned upon by society. As the century progressed so did women’s desire for equality. The suffrage movement gave many women a sense of entitlement and freedom and the tobacco industry took advantage of the marketing opportunity. Tobacco companies began marketing cigarettes to appeal to women during the burgeoning women’s movement of the 1920s.

In a content analysis of North American and British editions of Vogue, Cheryl Krasnick Warsh and Penny Tinkler trace representations of women smokers from the 1920s through the 1960s, concluding that the magazine “located the cigarette within the culture of the feminine elite,” associating it with “the constellation of behaviors and appearances presented as desirable characteristics of elitism, through the themes of lifestyle, ‘the look,’ and feminine confidence.”

Here’ a collection of 15 black and white photos that show women smoking cigarettes in the 1930s.

Actress, drug addict and [It Girl] Brenda Dean Paul (1907–1959, centre) leaves court after facing drugs charges, July 1933. She is holding a tin of large Sub Rosa cigarettes. (Photo by Central Press/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

Janet Allen, a professional dancing partner at Streatham Dance Hall, enjoying breakfast in bed. (Photo by Picture Post/Getty Images). 1939

Two Nurses demonstrate their objection to a smoking ban. (Photo by London Express/Getty Images). 1938

Nurses at the Salford Royal Hospital take advantage of the newly-opened smoking facilities, providing a smoke room for off duty staff. (Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images). 1938

Two women in yachting caps. One is lighting her cigarette from the others. (Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images). 9th May 1936

A lady is pictured lighting her cigarette now held in a novelty cigarette holder in the shape of a musical instrument. (Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images). Circa 1932

Two sailors from HMS Fury enjoy a smoke with two women in bathing suits on a beach in Jersey, where their ship is on a visit. (Photo by William Vanderson/Fox Photos/Getty Images). 29th June 1935

Two racegoers obviously need a cigarette to calm their nerves. (Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images). 25th March 1938

A young female British Navy officer sitting astride a minesweepers cannon and lighting a cigarette whilst two officers look on. (Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images). 5th June 1937

75 year-old Mary Parish lights a cigarette for her 101 year-old mother, Mary Ann Parish, at their home in Walworth, London, 14th February 1946. (Photo by Harry Todd/Fox Photos/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

German actress Hildegard Knef (1925–2002) in Munich, 1951. (Photo by Keystone/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

A woman smokes a cigarette while holding a cocktail glass in the other hand. (Photo by General Photographic Agency/Getty Images). Circa 1930

A woman smoking two cigarettes simultaneously with an elegant cocktail cigaratte holder. (Photo by Fox Photos/Getty Images). 27th July 1931

Women in the smoking lounge of the Globe Theatre, New York. (Photo by Hulton Archive/Getty Images). Circa 1930

Two women lighting cigarettes on a tennis court in Essex, England circa 1930s. (Photo by Keystone View/FPG/Getty Images)



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