Love Island: reality TV show replaces smokes with ecigs

The Brit reality TV hit is ready for some harm reduction help.


When the tabloids were full of complaints about the Love Island cast’s excessive smoking, U.K. e-liquid company Totally Wicked saw an opportunity to mix a little harm reduction with some good old-fashioned self-promotion.

Teaming up with the British Lung Foundation, the independent vaping company urged TV network ITV to provide the nic-craving twentysomethings some low-risk alternatives. Totally Wicked boss Fraser Cropper implored the TV execs to set a better example for the show’s millions of devoted followers.

“We’re aware of some of the negative headlines around smoking that the programme has attracted,” Cropper wrote in a letter to ITV. “I wondered if you would also consider joining forces with us and the BLF in order to help contestants ditch the habit. And, also to drive home a positive message to viewers.”

It’s too soon to know if the Love Island cast members will pick up vaping, but so far at least one has been spotted with an e-cig in place of his usual smoke.

Love Island is kind of a combo of The Real World and Survivor, but with more skin and sex than either of those “reality” programs. The British show features a cast of attractive young people living in a resort villa on the Spanish Mediterranean island of Mallorca. The contestants are required to pair up, and each couple sleeps in a double bed. Wacky hijinks ensue.

This isn’t the first time Totally Wicked has made a splash with some clever asymmetrical marketing to make a point. Who can forget the company’s trolling of vape-hating Welsh politician Mark Drakeford? They also bought naming rights for a rugby venue — now Totally Wicked Stadium — and made sure that fans are able to vape there too.

The plucky independent e-liquid maker also challenged the TPD in the European Court of Justice, which earned Totally Wicked respect from vapers everywhere.

Jim McDonald
I spend most of my time studying the regulatory, legislative and scientific challenges to vaping, advocating for our right to exist, and talking with others who do the same. Consider me a source for information, and feel free to agree or disagree with anything I say. I love good coffee and sweet Michigan cherries. My childhood hero was Gordie Howe.