A review of tobacco industry documents show research on psychological and behavioural needs in women was used to target cigarette advertising and ingredients, to increase smoking and reduce quitting rates.
The recently released review (PDF), published in the journal Addiction notes that:
A 1976 British-American Tobacco Company (BAT) review of gender differences (drawing on both internal and published studies) concluded that women were more motivated to smoke, smoked more for insecurity reasons and exhibited more neurotic traits.
The author further observed that higher neuroticism among women may intensify responses to smoking-related health pressures, and that female smokers found quitting more difficult and reported fewer successful cessation attempts.
In response, cigarette advertising and ingredients were altered to make them even more difficult to give up, and more attractive for new smokers.