A Guide to Tar in Cigarettes & Heated Tobacco

Tar is a component of tobacco smoke. It can appear as a brown substance that may stain the teeth and fingers. As an adult smoker, you may be wondering how to reduce tar in cigarettes, and whether low tar cigarettes exist. In this article, we’ll answer this question and discuss smoke-free alternatives. Alternatives like IQOS don’t produce tar. Due to the absence of tar, these alternatives produce less chemicals than cigarettes.*  

Important information: The absence of tar does not mean that IQOS is risk free. IQOS provides nicotine, which is addictive.

* Average reductions in levels of a range of harmful chemicals (excluding nicotine) compared to cigarette smoke.

What is Tar in Cigarettes?

Tar in cigarettes is not the same as the tar used for making roads. Tar is a weight measure of cigarette smoke residue. It is the total weight of the smoke’s solid and liquid residue, minus the nicotine and water. 

Stained teeth and fingers aren’t the only ways cigarette tar could impact adult smokers. Some of the chemicals present in cigarette smoke, and thus in cigarette tar, can also lead to smoking-related diseases. 

Does IQOS Heated Tobacco Produce Tar?

Smoke-free products such as heated tobacco heat tobacco instead of burning it. In doing this, these devices do not produce tar, and offer a reduction in harm compared to continued smoking. That said, the reduction in tar and harm provided by a heated tobacco device should be substantiated on a product-by-product basis.

IQOS is a range of heated tobacco products. Cigarettes produce tar - IQOS doesn't. Tar is the residue from smoke after a cigarette is burned. IQOS does not produce tar because it heats tobacco instead of burning it. It generates an aerosol residue that is fundamentally different from tar and consists of significantly lower levels of harmful chemicals.*

IMPORTANT INFORMATION: The absence of tar does not mean that IQOS is risk free. IQOS provides nicotine, which is addictive.

* Reductions in levels of the 9 harmful chemicals the World Health Organization recommends to reduce in cigarette smoke, which do not include nicotine.

Discover IQOS today to find out more about this smoke-free alternative. 

Tar is a part of smoking and can come with substantial risks. That said, smoke-free products are not risk-free and provide nicotine, which is addictive. IQOS is not an alternative to quitting and is not designed as a cessation aid. 

This article is for general information and educational purposes. Some of the information in this article is based on external, third-party sources and we make no representations or warranties of any kind regarding the accuracy, validity or completeness of such information. 

Man holding IQOS ILUMA

Ask your friend for their referral code?

Ask your friend for their referral code and get rewarded.

Get a referral code

Stop smoking

What Happens When You Quit Smoking and Start Vaping?

Learn what happens when you stop smoking cigarettes and switch to vaping. These products are not risk-free or designed as cessation aids.

Read article

airport sign

What Alternatives to Smoking Can I Buy at Airports?

Here, we’ll take a look at the various alternatives to smoking out there, whether they sell them at the airport, and whether you’re able to take any of these products on the plane with you.

Read article


How much cheaper are HEETS than cigarettes?

Here, we’ll look out how much heated tobacco costs when compared with the cost of cigarettes, and why it’s cheaper too.

Read article

Learn about heated tobacco
Learn about heated tobacco

What is heated tobacco?

Try IQOS for £10
Try IQOS for £10

Try now for 14 days

Discover the benefits of IQOS
Discover the benefits of IQOS

Why switch to IQOS?