How to Properly Smoke a Cigarette

When you smoke your cigarette down to the filter, it is time to find an ashtray.
When you smoke your cigarette down to the filter, it is time to find an ashtray. (Image: cigarette image by Wasim from

People of all walks of life smoke cigarettes, for a variety of reasons. Some people smoke in response to stress, some people smoke when they drink alcohol and others smoke with their coffee. Still others smoke because they feel addicted to the feeling they get when they smoke. While almost everyone has seen people lighting up cigarettes, the first time can be tricky. The cigarette must be held correctly, and must be lit at a certain time.

Things You'll Need

  • Lighter
  • Cigarette or match
  • Ashtray

Open your pack and pull out a cigarette.

Note of the difference between the two ends of your cigarette. One side has a filter, and the other side has tobacco visible.

Hold your cigarette between your middle finger and index finger, and press the cigarette--filter-end pointed in--up against your lips.

Strike a match or flick your lighter until a flame appears.

Light the end opposite from the filter as you breathe in. Keep trying until smoke begins to come out of that end away from your mouth. You should notice that the tobacco end of the cigarette is lit.

Breathe out the cigarette smoke.

Continue to repeat inhaling and exhaling the smoke from your cigarette.

Tap the excess ash into an ashtray, if there is one around.

Extinguish and discard your cigarette when you smoke the cigarette down near the filter area. You can extinguish the cigarette by smashing the filter carefully on a non-flammable surface, by stepping on it or by dipping it in water.

Tips & Warnings

  • Try to avoid blowing your cigarette smoke into other people's faces.
  • Cigarette smoke has been known to cause lung cancer. According to the American Cancer Society, smokers can lose over a decade of their life expectancy to cigarette smoking.
  • You may have to pay a fine if you litter your cigarette butts.
  • Women who are pregnant or nursing should refrain from smoking or ingesting nicotine.
  • If you smoke a cigarette past the beginning of the filter, you will burn your fingers.
  • Be careful not to burn yourself or others while smoking cigarettes.
  • Check signs to ensure you are not smoking in a forbidden area. There is no smoking allowed on airplanes or in movie theaters in the US.

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