Tobacco in Media
Why “Doja Cat Vaping” is a Trending Search

Why “Doja Cat Vaping” is a Trending Search

In the world of social media and celebrity culture, fans often follow their favorite stars as they navigate personal challenges, life changes, accomplishments, and struggles. One star who is known for sharing their life with fans online is Grammy winning rapper Doja Cat, who has gained popularity after two of her songs became viral TikTok sounds in 2020. Doja Cat has gone on to collaborate with other major artists like Post Malone, Ariana Grande, Tyga, The Weeknd, Nicki Minaj, and many others.

Doja Cat’s rise to popularity has also coincided with a rise in vape use among youth with more than 1 in 4 high school students using e-cigarettes (vapes) daily, according to data from the 2022 National Youth Tobacco Survey. Doja Cat has never been shy about her nicotine vape use and has been very much a part of her brand, appearing in Instagram Live sessions as she chats with fans while exhaling large vape clouds, adding to her relatability among young fans. Doja Cat even brought her vape with her to the 2022 Billboard Music Awards where she took a large puff from it before tossing it to the floor and proceeding to the stage to accept her award.

Unfortunately, Doja Cat’s journey took a dark turn when she developed an abscess on her tonsil that became infected and required surgery, causing her to cancel multiple shows. This health scare led to her pledging to quit vaping, garnering support from fans who started the hashtag #PROUDOFDOJA and shared their own struggles with nicotine addiction. Doja Cat expressed how challenging her journey to quit vaping was through tweets to her fans, celebrating after 70 days vape free. She has been open about how challenging her journey has been.

 Her candor provides fans with a perspective most are already aware of – nicotine is extremely addictive, and quitting is very challenging. A Truth Initiative study from 2021 showed that more than half of current e-cigarette users between 15 and 36 years old surveyed reported intending to quit. The American Cancer Society estimates that it takes most individuals between 8-10 attempts to quit nicotine use. The addictive qualities of nicotine can create a strong psychological and physical dependence, making it incredibly difficult for individuals to break free from its grip. The cycle of addiction can be perpetuated by triggers, stress, or peer influence, which can be hard to resist.

The conversations around Doja Cat shifted from her journey with vaping to her music as she recovered from her medical ordeal, until the 2023 Met Gala. To the surprise and concern of many, she was seen vaping on the red carpet in the background of others’ interviews, despite a strict smoking ban at the Met Gala.

This incident serves as a reminder that quitting an addiction is a journey filled with difficulties. It is crucial to approach these setbacks with empathy and understanding rather than judgment. We recognize that overcoming addiction is seldom a linear path and success often depends on the support individuals struggling with addiction receive.

Doja Cat’s vaping journey reflects the challenges many individuals face when trying to quit and we hope that she continues to pursue quitting in the future and that her candor throughout her journey makes fans who might be facing the same challenges feel seen. If you or someone you know is struggling to quit using nicotine products, support can be found at, (offers specialized programs for veterans, teens, women, in Spanish, and for individuals 60+),,, and many other local organizations.

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