What Does Thomas Shelby Smoke? Sweet Aftons in Peaky Blinders


Thomas Shelby, played by actor Cillian Murphy, is the captivating protagonist of the hit TV show "Peaky Blinders." Known for his sharp wit, cunning intelligence, and distinctive sense of style, Thomas Shelby is also famously associated with his smoking habit. In this article, we take a closer look at Thomas Shelby's choice of cigarettes and explore how it adds to his character's persona.

Thomas Shelby's Smoking Habit

Throughout the series, Thomas Shelby is frequently seen indulging in cigarettes, often using them as a prop to add to his air of mystery and intrigue. Smoking has become an integral part of his character's portrayal, and fans of the show often wonder what brand of cigarettes Thomas Shelby smokes.

Thomas Shelby's Cigarette of Choice

In "Peaky Blinders," Thomas Shelby is often seen smoking a distinctive brand of cigarettes called "Sweet Aftons." Sweet Aftons are an Irish brand of cigarettes that were first introduced in the early 20th century and are known for their smooth taste and unique packaging. These cigarettes are typically long and slim, with a brown filter and a distinctive white and gold box. Sweet Aftons are made from Virginia tobacco, which is known for its milder flavor profile compared to other types of tobacco, making them a popular choice among smokers who prefer a smoother smoking experience.

Symbolism of Sweet Afton Cigarettes

The choice of Sweet Afton cigarettes for Thomas Shelby's character is not random, but rather intentional, as it adds to the overall symbolism and characterization of the character. The sleek and sophisticated appearance of Sweet Afton cigarettes aligns with Thomas Shelby's refined personality and his inclination towards high-quality items. Additionally, the fact that Sweet Afton cigarettes are an Irish brand adds a layer of complexity to Thomas Shelby's character, as he is of Irish descent and has a complex relationship with his heritage throughout the series.

Historical Accuracy

The "Peaky Blinders" TV show is known for its attention to historical accuracy, and the choice of Sweet Afton cigarettes for Thomas Shelby's character is no exception. In the early 20th century, when the show is set, Sweet Afton cigarettes were indeed a popular brand in Ireland and the United Kingdom. By incorporating this detail into Thomas Shelby's character, the show's creators have added an authentic touch to the depiction of the time period and the character's personality.

Influence on Pop Culture

Thomas Shelby's smoking habit, along with his choice of Sweet Afton cigarettes, has become an iconic element of the "Peaky Blinders" show and has influenced popular culture. Fans of the show have been seen emulating Thomas Shelby's smoking style, and Sweet Afton cigarettes have gained a resurgence in popularity as a result. The show has also sparked discussions and debates about the portrayal of smoking in media and its impact on public health.


Thomas Shelby's smoking habit and his choice of Sweet Afton cigarettes are notable elements of his character's portrayal in the TV show "Peaky Blinders." It adds to his overall persona, aligns with the show's historical accuracy, and has influenced popular culture. However, it's important to remember that smoking is a harmful habit and should not be promoted or glorified. As viewers, it's essential to approach the depiction of smoking in media with critical thinking and awareness of the potential impact it may have on public health and consumer choices.

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