“Bad Habit” – Safe Haven for Smokers?

by on June 12, 2012 · 19 comments

in Culture, Ocean Beach

Looking at the streets, sidewalks, gutters, alleyways, and ashtrays around the village, cigarette smoking is still popular in OB. Just take a look in front at any open restaurant, bar, or other venue in town and you’ll see a host of smokers puffing away. When I inquiring as to how they afford their cigarettes which averaging $5 per pack the majority shared that they simply shell out the $$$. A few replied they choose to go without and a host of others simply ask others for them.

Well, smokers, here’s some good news for you and your wallet; a safe haven for smokers has arrived in OB. It’s a shop where smokers are welcome, wanted, and appreciated. Bad Habit is its name and “rollin your own” is its game.

On my first visit, I was greeted by the owner Nina and her staff of one. From the time I walked in through the door (after getting over the shock of the dark mustard colored walls) I felt welcomed and my business was appreciated. While building regulations prevent anyone from smoking inside the shop, the alley is mere steps away where one can light up to try the various tobaccos offered before making a purchase.

I was asked about any tobacco preference I had (light, regular, menthol), offered a choice of regular or mint tubes, taught how to operate one of five personal electronic rolling machine, and wha-la! My personal pack of cigarette was rolled and ready in under two minutes. As a first time customer with coupon, I rolled my own pack of cigarettes for $2. While there was a learning curve on the rolling machine, they offered hands-on assistance during the entire process.

On my second visit, I chose to purchase a carton. I like my cigarettes packed tightly and this would cause the machine to jam on occasion, but Pat was right there to show me how to clear the machine with the touch of a button. He even replaced the tubes that didn’t roll correctly. There are still some challenges with the high humidity in the air effecting the tobacco, but they are trying various solutions to fix this. After rolling the entire carton, only about 4% of the tubes needed to be replaced.

Bad Habit indeed. For all the places smokers are not welcomed, this is the place for those that smoke and prefer to roll their own tubed cigarettes at a fraction of the cost. If you choose to smoke, I’m certain you’ll like this Bad Habit.

 Contact info:

Bad Habit
4967 Newport Ave, suite 13
(same breezeway as Your Mama’s Mug)

Store hours: Tues-Sat 10-6

Packs: $2.79. Cartons: $23.97.

 Watch for their Grand Opening coming soon!

{ 19 comments… read them below or add one }

Goatskull June 12, 2012 at 9:47 am

I’m not sure I can really think of this as a good thing. Hey to each his own and I’m all about people having the choice to do what they want with their bodies, but I can’t say this is something to celebrate.


Sunshine June 12, 2012 at 7:18 pm

the only reason I wrote this article is because of the tremendous savings on cigarettes for those that CHOOSE to smoke. I am not selling the idea of smoking to anyone who chooses to remain smoke free. who said this article celebrated smoking? if anything, i’m celebrating saving money.


Goatskull June 12, 2012 at 7:51 pm

No disrespect to you Sunshine, but there are still a lot of people smoking everywhere, not just OB. By and large I don’t think the people of OB are any less able to pay for cigs than anywhere else. Regardless of all that, the best way to save money is to choose NOT to smoke. That being said I’m all in favor of this business doing their thing and anyone who chooses to patronize it to do so.


Sunshine June 12, 2012 at 10:46 pm

Thanx, Goatskull, for remembering that a new small business in our little village is something to be “in favor of.” imho, a personal visit to their store could be in order just to see for yourself what their all about. I don’t think they’ll hold a weapon to you and force you to start smoking….at least that wasn’t at all how they greeted and assisted me.


Goatskull June 13, 2012 at 7:28 am

I’m sure they won’t. I used to smoke so at some point I would have not only walked into this store but I would have spent money there.


judi Curry June 12, 2012 at 12:11 pm

With all the knowledge of what cigarette smoking – and 2nd hand smoke – can do to a body, to encourage smoking rather than to educate to the reasons why not to smoke, is a sad commentary. I am sickened by the recurring image of my husband dying from lung cancer. I hope I’m not driving down the alley with my windows open.


Sunshine June 12, 2012 at 7:27 pm

judy, my deepest sympathy on the passing of your husband. losing ones mate is a pain like no other. please do not interpret this article as permission to smoke ~ only a venue for saving money for those that CHOOSE to do so. the streets are littered with discarded butts, surfers have been known to get them in their mouths while out in the water, and yes, second hand smoke is offensive.

all i was doing by writing this article was introducing a new store in town where those that choose to smoke can save money. by the looks of things around town, smoking is still quite popular in OB. anyone else who smokes can tell you how out of control the cost of cigarettes is.

would you have objected to an article on a new alcohol venue in town? alcohol kills more people then I care to mention, yet most businesses offer “happy hour” where drinks are bought at a reduced cost. That doesn’t mean I’m going to go drink because I see a sale sign on alcohol. and I seriously doubt anyone is going to start smoking because Bad Habit has opened their doors.

This village has plenty of smokers in it. don’t shoot me, i’m just the messenger.


Steve June 13, 2012 at 12:32 am

Drinking is worse. Even eating fast food is just as bad.


Sunshine June 12, 2012 at 7:15 pm

right or wrong smoking is, I can’t say, but for those that choose to smoke, getting cigs at a fraction of the cost motivated the article. saving money, on anything in this economy, is worth mentioning.


Brenda McFarlane June 15, 2012 at 9:44 am

Thank you Sunshine for covering this shop! I was very curious about it.

As a recovering nicotine addict who hates smelling cigarette smoke because it re-activates the damage I did to my stomach by smoking, I wish people weren’t so harsh in their judgement of smokers. It is a severe addiction for many of us and saying it is a choice for all is like saying Gollum had a choice with his “Precious” in Lord of the Rings. One thing to consider before sneering at a smoker is that nicotine is thought to be a powerful and effective anti-depressant. I always knew I was self-medicating by smoking. 10 years of therapy, enough money for antidepressants and a good 12 step program called Nicotine Anonymous (nicotinefreesandiego.webs.com) helped me but only the last option is available to many people.

Smoking kills but it also makes countless lives more bare-able. I have no problem with people who are already addicted having the opportunity to afford their drug of choice. It’s the people who are not yet addicted that I would like to reach out to but not with shame and social disapproval but with clear and honest truth about what it is like to be addicted to something.


Sunshine June 30, 2012 at 1:39 pm

well said, Brenda. I wholeheartedly agree with reaching out to those who are not “chasing the dragon” with the truth about addiction and it’s various dead-end detours. Perhaps the trials & errors of this smoking generation can help the next one avoid the same mistakes.


Bryan June 27, 2012 at 2:14 am

What wasn’t mentioned above is that all the tobbacco used is additive free. (Aside from menthol in the menthol blends)

Smokers are well aware of the cocktail of chemicals in the big name brands, but this is just real tobbacco with nothing added. They taste better and burn much longer doubling the value over just the price.

I like Beach Blonde. The Navajo Red is a bit more bold than I desire.


Sunshine June 30, 2012 at 1:42 pm

you are absolutely right, Bryan. Being offered the choice of additive free tobacco is a real plus. After my carton of Navajo Red, I would have to agree that it is a bit bolder than I prefer. Thanx for the tip on Beach Blonde. Next time I’m in Bad Habit I’ll give that one a whirl.


Nina July 1, 2012 at 10:03 am

Thank you all for supporting the store. It’s location is kind of hidden so we are relying on word of mouth to stay in business. Please check out our Facebook page and pass on to others. I will be posting specials often on this venue, so keep your eye out!



Sunshine July 2, 2012 at 12:47 am

thanx & kudos to you, Nina, for opening a new business in OB, I, for one, appreciate your spirit of adventure and wish you many moons of prosperity.

Please keep us posted about your Grand Opening.


Nina July 8, 2012 at 10:26 am

I am so sorry to announce that I can no longer operate the cigarette rolling machines due to legislation that was passed by Congress and signed by the President on June 6th. “…large tobacco companies are benefiting from the new law and RYO stores are just out of luck.” http://www.cspnet.com/news/tobacco/articles/obama-signs-transportation-bill-ryo-rider

I will be selling off my inventory in the coming days. I appreciate the loyalty of all my customers and so sorry that this law has passed. PLEASE pay great attention to the upcoming election, know the issues, and VOTE for those that support small business. THANK YOU.


Sunshine July 8, 2012 at 11:41 am

I’m sorry to see Lobbyist/Corporations win this one with their $ad and $inister buying of our government. sadly enough our President agreed with them and $igned it into law. Imho, it’s one more example of Corporate Monies buying their way through Washington, D.C., and trickling down more of the same undermining shit to the people.

I will be happy to see Ron Paul in the White House as I hope he will stop this horrid practice of trading the rights of the people for more buck$ into the deep pockets of lobbyist and big busine$$.

word on the street is that you signed a lease in the space you rented for Bad Habit until April, 2013. Any ideas for a new business to offset the costs of your rent? Please let us know.


Sunshine July 11, 2012 at 5:04 pm

This notice was found on the closed suite #13 door:

“Blow out sale!!! Due to a bill that the President signed yesterday, I can no longer operate my roll your own tobacco machines and will be closing my doors. Great opportunity, don’t miss out: Cash only!!!!”

sale is going on now, last day to purchase any remaining inventory, Friday the 13th of July.
4967 Newport Ave, #13-OB
In the mini-mall behind Your Mama’s Mug & new location of Seth’s Chop Shop


Sunshine July 17, 2012 at 2:01 pm

Nina or Pat, could you contact me thru the OBRag before July 24th. interested in any remaining inventory you may have. I have an idea that I’d like to run buy you.


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