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Rhys sparks mid-air scare with fake fag

Press release October 28, 2009 Lifestyle

Welsh lothario Rhys Ifans almost sparked an air rage incident after appearing to light up on a plane.

The bad boy actor, known for his hell-raising lifestyle, brandished a SmokeStik on a long-haul flight from London’s Heathrow to Los Angeles on September 25th. Stunned flight attendants rushed to his side to make him put it out.

Smoking on planes, or even tampering with the smoke detector in the lavatory, means arrest on arrival. Offenders face heavy fines and risk imprisonment.

But First Class passengers looked on aghast as the scruffy star of Notting Hill and The Boat That Rocked turned the lookalike cigarette round and pressed the glowing tip against his cheek, demonstrating it wasn’t a genuine gasper.

Instead, the 41-year-old was puffing on the ban-busting SmokeStik Royale, the trendy e-cigarette which is increasingly popular among London’s party set. Tobacco, tar and smoke-free, they give smokers the same nicotine hit but are legal to use anywhere, even on planes.

When the curious cabin crew members were told what it was, they were queuing up in the aisle to take a drag. One of the Virgin Atlantic staff has since put an order in for the innovative product.

The SmokeStik Royale has been designed by former It Girl, Lady Victoria Hervey, and features her family crest. She came up with the idea of launching it in Britain after spotting increasing numbers of celebrities using SmokeStiks in LA, where she now lives. Hollywood A-listers, including Leonardo DiCaprio, Paris Hilton and the cast of Twilight, have been snapped with SmokeStiks.

Sold in Selfridges, customers include many high profile names, including Simon Cowell, Rachel Stevens and models Twiggy and Erin O’Connor.

SmokeStiks utilise replaceable cartridges, costing substantially less than a pack of traditional cigarettes, and come in a chic slender pearlised barrel with a platinum-coloured ‘gem’ in place of the ash. Using no flame or fire, it functions automatically. SmokeStiks have been hailed as the future of smoking and a non-cancerous alternative to cigarettes. They act as an appetite suppressant and can also help dedicated smokers to quit, offering a healthier way to satisfy their cravings.

SmokeStiks could even help to quell incidents of air rage – studies last year suggested rows over smoking and smokers getting irate while experiencing nicotine withdrawal contributed to a large percentage of disruptive behaviour.

Brian Culwell of SmokeStik said: “The fact that SmokeStik doesn’t fall foul of the smoking ban makes it ideal for people who find it very tough to sit through a lengthy transatlantic flight without cigarettes.

“And often it’s not much easier on the ground: in Rhys’s case he was headed for California, where they have one of the toughest smoking bans in the world. SmokeStiks give smokers the social aspect, the image, the feel of smoking and of course, the nicotine buzz, but without the smell and the cancer-causing agents. The only down side is occasionally you may get challenged by people who mistake them for the real thing!”

To find out more about the SmokeStik get in touch with the company by visiting or call 0808 120 1999.


For more information, images, or if you would like to try SmokeStik, please contact 

Steve McComish

The London PR Agency Ltd

020 7193 0566

[email protected]