Ashtrays - Interesting Facts to Know


An ashtray, a tray for ash (a.k.a. "ash tray"), is a receptacle for ash and butts from cigarettes or cigars.

Ashtray ash tray for cigarette ash and butts 


There are basically 2 types of ashtrays - cigarette ashtrays and cigar ashtrays.

  • Cigarette ashtrays have smaller notches at the rim that hold cigarettes.
  • Cigar ashtrays have bigger notches where cigars can be rested.


Why are ashtrays important?

Every smoker needs a place to ash, no matter where they are. Even when smokers are in the nature, they need pocket ashtrays.



Ashtrays are typically made of fire-retardant material that stops the spread of fire such as glass, pottery, metal, stone, heat-resistant plastic, etc. Among all, glass ashtrays and ceramic ashtrays are more common compared to the rest.


Basic Feature

Most home ashtrays are shallow cylinders with a flat base, to rest on a table. In public places, due to increased usage, ashtrays are wall-mounted and could be larger than the standard tabletop ashtrays. 


Enhanced Feature

Many ashtrays nowadays have a cover or lid to contain smoke and prevent odor from leaving the ashtray. Oxygen is prevented from flowing in, so a cigarette or cigar will go out pretty fast, even if it has not been completely extinguished by pushing into the surface.



Before the 19th century, simple, primitive forms of ashtrays have long existed. At the start of the 20th century, the popularity of fancier, detailed ashtrays started to take off, as more women began to smoke. 

For example, ashtrays may depict pastoral scenes of maidens wandering through vibrantly colored landscapes, feature luxurious models of women in fancy dresses, and animals in states of play. They may also highlight extravagant floral arrangements.

Afterward, ashtray designs focus more on practicality. Therefore, there are a lot of practical yet decorative ashtrays available in the market. While in use, they are excellent ashtrays fulfilling all needs of smokers. While not in use, they serve as aesthetically-pleasing home decors. Many ashtrays are used as jewelry holders and incense burners too!

metal ashtray zinc alloy ash tray with flip lid smokeless home decor 
Ashtray with Flip Lid and Rose Carving


Car Ashtray

In the past, a car ashtray used to be a standard, expected part of a vehicle. Later on, it's available as a dealer-installed accessory item.

Car ashtrays began to lose popularity due to tighter regulations and increased awareness of the dangers of smoking. Since the mid-1990s, many car manufacturers no longer include ashtrays and cigarette lighters in cars. Nonetheless, buyers are still offered the option to include one from the dealer.

By the 2000s, most cars only offered them as optional features. Today, many cars don't even do that.


When did humans start smoking?

The history of smoking dates back to as early as 5000 BC in the Americas in shamanistic rituals. Tobacco was introduced to Eurasia by European colonists. With the arrival of the Europeans in the 16th century, the consumption, cultivation, and trading of tobacco quickly spread.


When was the first ashtray made/invented?

The first examples probably date from the early 19th century. They were in common use by the late Victorian period (1850 to 1910). By the early part of the 20th century, ashtray designs increased. The history of ashtrays is far shorter than the history of smoking. 


Which country has the highest smoking rate?

According to Smoking Rates by Country 2022, the top 3 countries are:

  • Nauru (52.10%)
  • Kiribati (52.00%)
  • Tuvalu (48.70%)


Where to buy ashtrays?

Ashtray Planet! To get an idea of the best ashtrays, check out the bestsellers of Ashtray Planet, which have received positive reviews, and many smokers have loved them.


Who is the most reliable ashtrays seller?

Ashtray Planet! Check here for the reasons to buy from Ashtray Planet. Check out the customer reviews too!


How to choose an ashtray?

There is no ashtray that is the best for all smokers. Your choice depends on your needs.

Check the description and photos of each ashtray, and choose the one that best suits your needs and interests.


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