Before Becoming President, Ronald Reagan Was a Paid Cigarette Model

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Long before Ronald Reagan was the governor of California or the 40th president of the United States, he made money posing in cigarette advertisements.

Although his modeling relationship with the tobacco industry dates to at least the 1930s when he was a radio sportscaster, business picked up after he became a well known Hollywood actor, and he continued to model for them.

The amount of money he earned by making tobacco “cool” is unknown.


Above: Mmm, mild.

What is known is that Reagan mostly did his posing for The Liggett & Myers Tobacco Company, which was later through a series of lawsuits revealed to be covering up the true health effects of smoking through their deceptive advertisements.

Ironically, though he was paid to make smoking cool, Reagan did not smoke himself. Below are a few ads featuring the then-future president.


An early 1932 ad from his career as a radio sportscaster features Reagan endorsing Kentucky Winner cigarettes and Kentucky Club pipe tobacco.


In this 1948 ad featured in Life Magazine, Reagan proclaimed, “My cigarette is the mild cigarette… That’s why Chesterfield is my favorite.”


1952 saw this ad featuring Reagan and another box of his “favorite” Chesterfield cigarettes.

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One comment on “Before Becoming President, Ronald Reagan Was a Paid Cigarette Model”

  1. Great site and I like your articles keep it up!

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