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Port Talbot Fronts Campaign

Port Talbot man has been chosen to front a new campaign highlighting the benefits of switching smoking for vaping

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A Port Talbot man will be the face of a new nationwide stop-smoking campaign launched by the UK vaping retailer VPZ. It is the UK’s largest retailer of vaping products, with over 150 stores across the UK. Douglas Parsons will front VPZ’s new in-store campaign which champions smokers who have quit through vaping.

Established in 2012 and based in Edinburgh, VPZ says it brings consumers the widest range of quality approved products, backed by knowledgeable and well-trained staff.

Douglas’ stop-smoking journey will be featured across a range of collateral, including on each VPZ store’s in-house screens as he details his switch to vaping. The 26-year-old previously smoked a cigarette every hour before being encouraged to kick the habit by his partner.

Douglas had tried a range of over-the-counter smoking cessation products but admits he continually went back to cigarettes as he struggled to kick the habit once and for all.

 He eventually turned to vaping as an alternative and has never looked back after taking advantage of VPZ’s 28-day support programme and Money Back Guarantee on Innokin starter packs.

Since then, Douglas revealed his life has been transformed and says he now feels he is able to be a lot more active as a result. Douglas said: “I have been completely off cigarettes for close to a month now and I can already see the positive impact that this is having on my health and general wellbeing.”

“That is all thanks to turning to vaping. Beforehand I felt like I had run out of options, but vaping was suggested to me and I haven’t looked back. It has genuinely changed my life. It has helped from both a financial and health point of view, and I am amazed by the difference that VPZ and vaping has made for myself.”

Douglas’ local Port Talbot store is equipped with a carbon monoxide testing monitor, which has allowed him to regularly track his body’s journey to becoming cigarette free.

And he has been blown away by the results, which have seen him lower his carbon monoxide levels from 21 parts per million down to just two in the space of a month.

Douglas’ original level of 21 is what is seen with most heavy smokers and means there is a high level of carbon monoxide in the blood. Meanwhile, a level between one and six equates to less than two per cent carbon monoxide.

Most people have a small level of carbon monoxide in their breath simply due to the air quality around them.

Douglas added: “The VPZ staff in-store have been brilliant and having the opportunity to be able to track how my body is reacting really puts everything into perspective. It is genuinely crazy the difference vaping has made to my body.”

Public Health England estimates that vaping is at least 95 per cent less harmful than smoking conventional tobacco cigarettes. Latest figures also show that approximately two million people in the UK have already quit smoking by switching to vaping, with 500,000 more presently trying to switch.

Furthermore, Cancer Research UK estimates that there are currently 9.4 million smokers in the UK who can still potentially switch to vaping.

Latest consumer research from VPZ shows that 89 per cent of customers stated that vaping helped them quit smoking altogether. Among the success stories, 97 per cent stated that vaping helped them most throughout the journey towards kicking the habit. And of those, 79 per cent confirmed that they had been smoking for six years or more.

Douglas is among more than 14,000 smokers looking to kick the habit who have been inspired to switch using one of VPZ’s wide range of starter kits since the launch of their ground-breaking support service in September 2019.

As part of VPZ’s support service, the vaping specialist has partnered with supplier Innokin to offer a 30-day money back guarantee on the T18E-II starter-kit, offering the kit to customers at a reduced price, to help start them on their journey and a no quibble money back guarantee if they find that vaping isn’t for them. Customers who find success in vaping will also be rewarded for sticking to their journey with a voucher to spend in-store.

Doug Mutter, Director at VPZ, said: “We are delighted with the success that Douglas has achieved since switching to vaping and wish him every success as he continues on his own personal journey. He is the perfect example of someone who has benefitted from making the switch and we are delighted that he has agreed to become the face of our in-store campaign for 2020.”

“His story is inspirational. That is why we have chosen to highlight his story across our stores to show people who may be struggling to quit smoking just how impactful finally making the switch can be. We take great pride in the fact that smokers are able to come into our stores, receive support from our staff and have access to the best starter kits on the market.”


  • ONS report on e-cigarette and vaping use in the UK – [link]
  • Public Health England (PHE) report into e-cigarettes – [link]
  • Action on Smoking and Health and Cancer Research UK report – [link]
Dave Cross avatar

Dave Cross

Journalist at POTV
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Dave is a freelance writer; with articles on music, motorbikes, football, pop-science, vaping and tobacco harm reduction in Sounds, Melody Maker, UBG, AWoL, Bike, When Saturday Comes, Vape News Magazine, and syndicated across the Johnston Press group. He was published in an anthology of “Greatest Football Writing”, but still believes this was a mistake. Dave contributes sketches to comedy shows and used to co-host a radio sketch show. He’s worked with numerous vape companies to develop content for their websites.

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