Using cigarette butts and surfing to build ocean mindfulness and stewardship

The current state of plastic on our beaches, and in our oceans, is a direct result of our habitual disconnection to our waste and the way we culturally treat our oceans. As surfers, we play a vital role that could help turn these tides before they turn on us…

Industrial Designer Taylor Lane and filmmaker Ben Judkins are creating an environmental surf film that uses the Cigarette Surfboard to question the mentality of littering cigarette butts, and how this largely represents our single-use plastic culture and its effects on the ocean. Our goal is to inspire, educate, and share creative solutions to encourage a “call to action” for the international surf community / industry to become more engaged stewards of the sea. We aim to provide people (surfers and non-surfers alike) with tools to help reduce their impact on the ocean. 


Bucks for Butt’s?

If you’d like to support our film, click here to help out!

Why was this board made?

The Cigarette Surfboard was made for an international competition held by the surf company Vissla, in collaboration with the Surfrider Foundation. The goal of the contest was to create an article of surf-craft out of upcycled materials. We saw this as an opportunity to address a major issue that, as surfers, we experience on a daily basis: beach and ocean pollution.

So our question became: What kind of trash could we salvage to make a poignant statement about littering and coastal health, while capturing the hearts and minds of surfers, environmentalists, and everyday citizens?

The answer: cigarette butts - the most littered item in the world (5.6 trillion a year!). And guess what? The butts are made of plastic - cellulose acetate - which means they will never fully decompose. Not to mention, each butt contains thousands of toxic chemicals that leach into the environment. So why are people still flicking their butts?


Watch the video below to see how the board was made and our first attempt at surfing it…


We made some repairs, then successfully surfed it!


Stab Magazine writer Michael Ciaramella rides and reviews the Cigarette Surfboard


International Recognition


After taking 1st place at Vissla + Surfrider's Creators Contest, news of the Cigarette Surfboard went viral, captivating minds and publications around the world. Recognizing the global impact of their creation, Ben and Taylor were inspired to make an environmental surf film about the Cigarette Surfboard and beyond. To learn more about "The Film" click here, or scroll to the top!