Ever wonder about the history of the electronic cigarette? A modern marvel that dates way back to 1963, the e-cigarette has changed the way smokers today enjoy the sensations of smoking and savoring nicotine. The invention was the creation of a man named Herbert Gilbert, and understanding how hazardous tobacco cigarettes are, he had the foresight to know it was only a matter of time before people started seeing the true consequences of smoking heavily.
Back then, however, smoking tobacco cigarettes was far too popular for the invention to have made any ground, so the concept came and went, disappearing into oblivion due to a lack of interest from the public.
Over the next few decades, as people became more and more aware and affected by the harm that comes from smoking tobacco cigarettes, the deadly reality of tobacco would hit home for a Chinese pharmacist named Hon Lik. His father, a heavy smoker lost his life to lung cancer, and Lik, seeing the need for real alternatives, developed a device he thought would greatly help smokers get the same pleasure they had from cigarettes, in a similar manner, without the tobacco and smoke.
This was in 2003, and the products were an instant success in China when they hit the market. By 2006 the popularity and use of these products became so widespread, they were being used all over Europe, and once they reached the American market in 2007, the results were similarly successful.
Today, 7 years in, the market is soaring, on the verge of hitting $2 billion in sales. The popularity of e-cigarettes continues to grow, with new innovations and products being created all the time. While the success has not been met without controversy and obstacles, it comes with the territory of any product that achieves such overnight success.
Through the recent years, politicians have attempted to boycott the products as well as impose large scale taxation, in an effort to recoup lost sales from cigarette decline, however so far the only restrictions the FDA has implemented are those that prohibit the products from being sold to minors, which obviously is a common sense move that is necessary. Some states and counties have imposed bans on e-cigarettes, and do not allow them to be used publicly, similar to the limitations placed on traditional cigarettes, and even still e-cigarettes continue to grow in sales and use.
The future, despite the red tape, is looking immensely promising for electronic cigarettes, and it will be most definitely exciting to see where this industry is headed. One thing is for sure, and that is that the alternative cigarette has changed the landscape of smoking, and smokers have truly embraced their option in vapor. So, let’s all take a moment to tip our hats and speak some words of gratitude to the e-cig’s founding fathers: Herbert Gilbert and Hon Lik!