12 Q&A about cigarettes, even experienced smokers don’t know!

There are 1.1 billion smokers throughout the world, according to the statistic in 2019. That is, up to 15% of the global population smokes.

Here are 12 Q&A about cigarettes.

1. How to price cigarettes?

Cigarette Prices

Theoretically speaking, the price of cigarettes has little relevance to the quality of cigarettes (tar, nicotine content, etc.). It is mainly the result of market strategies.

So don’t judge the price of cigarettes by these indexes. And apparently, expensive cigarettes are not better than cheaper ones.

Pricing cigarettes is complex, and tax is the main factor. It accounts for 70% cost of one pack of cigarettes.

The rest 30% of the cost comes from transportation, profit, and production.

The specific pricing strategy for each cigarette is a trade secret.

2. What’s the difference between cigarette paper and daily writing paper?

Cigarette Papers

Cigarette papers can be classified as cigarette paper and tipping paper.

Cigarette paper is used for wrapping tobacco, and tipping paper is the outer wrapping of the filter section.

The earliest cigarettes didn’t have filter tips, so the tipping paper was invented later.

The tipping paper should be nontoxic and moisture-resisted because it contacts the mouth.  

Cigarette papers belong to specialty paper, no matter production process or quality requirements are much higher than normal writing paper.

The air permeability and flammability of cigarette paper are better than ordinary paper. And the raw material is bleached hemp pulp, while the ordinary paper is made from wooden pulp.

Cigarette paper is much thicker than ordinary paper, but its tensile strength is much higher. 8,000-12,000 cigarettes are made per minute, and the paper will be broken if strength is not enough.

3. Does a cigarette have a shelf life?

The production date is indicated on the outside packaging box and certificates.

But no indications on the single pack or a carton. Generally, customers can’t know the exact production date of the cigarettes they purchase.

Most brands of cigarettes don’t indicate the shelf life. But we suggest that the storage time should not exceed two years, otherwise the flavor might be changed.

4. Why don’t cigarettes indicate the expiration date (or best-before date)?

Generally, cigarette products can be sold within half a year. And the production date has been marked on each master box.

Moreover, the storage of cigarettes is big influenced by the environment. There are too many affecting factors.

5. Why is a cigarette at a length of 84mm typically?

Length of Electronic Cigarette and Tobacco Cigarette

The specifications of initial cigarette products are 70, 84, 85, 90, 95, 100, and 120 (mm).

The length of cigarettes without filters is 70 mm, and the effective smoking length is about 60 mm.

An 84mm cigarette contains a 19mm filter, and the length of the cigarette is 65mm. Due to the additional filter, its effective smoking length is also 60mm.

Now the standard length is 84mm.

6. Where is the best position to smoke a cigarette?

Generally speaking, for a standard 84mm cigarette, the golden section is the best smoking part. That is to say, only smoke about one-third of the cigarette, and stop smoking the remaining two-thirds.

This is the most beneficial to health. Because when the first third of a cigarette is smoked, the remaining two-thirds of the cigarettes also function as a filter.

As cigarettes are shortened, harmful substances will continue to increase, and the taste of the smoke will become worse.

7. What’s the makeup of a cigarette filter?

Cigarette Filter

Filters, also called filter tips, are essentially a material used to filter smoke and reduce harmful substances.

Most cigarettes currently on the market are equipped with filters. In the world, the main filter materials are divided into two types – polypropylene and acetate.

The polypropylene filter rod is formed and dried by polypropylene tow for cigarettes and a special water-based adhesive for filter rods.

Polypropylene is a safe and non-toxic macromolecular material, which is commonly used in food packaging; and the special water-based adhesive for filter rods is generally a water-emulsion polyacrylate polymer or copolymer.

This kind of adhesive is safe, non-toxic, and has good biocompatibility. It is a polymer material commonly used in the pharmaceutical and medical industries.

The adsorption and filtration efficiency of polypropylene filter rods for tar, nicotine, carbon monoxide, and other substances in smoke is equivalent to that of acetate filter rods, but the taste of polypropylene filter rods is slightly worse than that of traditional acetate filter rods.

8. What’s the count unit for cigarettes?

Depending on the area, there are different package sizes.

In China, for instance:

20 cigarettes in a pack, 10 packs in a carton, 50 cartons in a set, and 5 sets in a master box.

9. Why are there 20 cigarettes in a pack?

Cigarettes are stuffed in three rows in the cigarette box.

If the three rows are the same, the box should be wider, and cigarettes easy to squeeze each other.

Therefore, when a pack is stuffed with 20 cigarettes, three rows are formed into a triangle, which not only disperses the pressure but also reduces the occupied space.

10. Why most filter tips are cork color?

Traditionally, the filter tips are white or cork color.

Mix-flavored cigarettes are likely using white tipping paper, and flue-cured tobacco is combined with cork color filter tips.

11. What flavors (extracts) are added to cigarettes?

Generally, sugar, honey, and juice extracts can be added.

Or adding some organic acids to adjust the pH value of tobacco leaves, such as citric acid, benzoic acid, tartaric acid, etc.

Fragrance can be mixed with some tobacco extracts, Maillard reaction products, natural plant extracts, and many monomeric fragrance materials (such as ethyl acetate, isoamyl acetate, phenylacetic acid, acetic acid, vanillin, etc.).

Matching these flavors with tobacco leaves forms different cigarette styles.

12. Why a lighted cigarette can keep burning, but a cigar stops burning if no smoking?


Cigarette Papers are verified by smoldering experiments to ensure that smoldering will not be extinguished.

The reason for not extinguishing is that the potassium and sodium salts of combustion accelerant citric acid are added to the cigarette paper, and the cigarette paper has a certain degree of air permeability.

Second, the expanded shredded tobacco in general cigarettes also contributes to the burning of cigarettes.

Cigars are wrapped in tobacco leaves with no additives added. Its burning is easy to stop.