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To put it simply, an e liquid contains nicotine (optional) and flavour. When used with an electronic cigarette, it delivers nicotine to your body, just as a traditional cigarette would, but without the horrible taste, smell and deadly toxins.
You will have heard it called different names and seen it spelled different ways, but it’s all the same thing. So next time you hear or see vape juice, vape liquid, e-juice etc, you will know that it is simply just eliquid.
HOW DOES ELIQUID WORK?
When vape liquid is added to the vape tank or kit, it begins to soak into vape coil. Then when you fire up the device, it heats the liquid up so that it turns into a vapour. It is no different from boiling a kettle, except you inhale the flavoured vapour directly in to your mouth and lungs.
It is just simple science and then the next simple thing is choosing the right vape liquid for the right vape kit or device.
IS ELIQUID HARMFUL?
If you have never smoked, then we don not advise you to start vaping. As with anything going in to your body, there is always a risk.
We can categorically state when it comes to vaping v smoking, vaping is far less harmful. Because organisations like the NHS, Public Health England and Cancer Research have told us so.
Unlike cigarettes, eliquid doesn’t contain cancer causing chemicals like tar and benzene, or the scary carbon monoxide and hydrogen cyanide.
WHAT IS IN ELIQUID?
Most approved and licensed vape liquid in the UK will have a maximum of four types of ingredients:
Propylene Glycol – PG
Vegetable Glycerin – VG
You may well think that there would be a whole lot of crazy chemicals in a single bottle of vape liquid, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. If you were to open your kitchen cupboard, you would already have products which contain everything uses in vape liquid apart from the nicotine.
PROPYLENE GLYCOL – PG
This chemical is made to food safe standard and is fit for human consumption. It’s been used in the food industry for decades as well as medicines that we consume on a daily basis. In vape liquid, this ingredient helps to carry the nicotine and flavour.
VEGETABLE GLYCERIN – VG
This is a thicker substance and is also food safe and used as a food sweetener and thickener. This ingredient is derived from plant oils which helps to produce the vapour when used in a vape kit.
Across the UK, we consume this daily. In items such as cakes, cupcakes, yoghurts, ice-cream, drink etc...
Nicotine is a highly addictive substance and is poisonous in large doses. However, when it comes to smoking and vaping, the real danger of nicotine is the addiction. For this reason we do not recommend taking up vaping if you have not smoked.
DIFFERENT TYPES OF ELIQUID RATIOS/MIXES
If you’ve already been looking at eliquids, you’ll notice that they come in different or mixes of VG and PG. This refers to amount of PG and VG that is present in the vape liquid.
Example: A bottle of vape juice stating it is PG 70/30, means that it is 70% PG and 30% VG Mix.
Knowing what these mean and what is right for you is the difference between enjoying your vape or hating it.
PG BASED JUICES
Higher PG vape liquids are commonly used by those wanting to give up smoking. This type of liquid offers higher levels of nicotine and delivers a more intense throat hit, such as a traditional cigarette.
Usually these vape liquids would be arounf 50% PG or 70% PG and are made to simulate the feel of smoking as opposed to big clouds and doing tricks.
This thinner higher PG type of vape liquid is vaped at lower temperatures and allows for higher nicotine strength options up to 20mg including salt nic eliquids.
VG BASED JUICES
VG vape liquids (such as the 70VG/30PG Mix) are synonymous with creating big, thick clouds and come in a whole range of exotic flavours.
These thicker liquids start at around 60% VG and are vaped at a higher temperature. Because of this, only lower nicotine strengths are available, so you’ll struggle to get anything above 6mg strength.
50/50 eliquids incorporate the best of both worlds - 50% PG and 50% VG. The result is a liquid which is full of flavour, has a more than adequate throat hit and produces more vapour than a PG liquid. An added bonus of 50/50 e liquids is that they can be used in pretty much any device and any tank.
Nicotine levels for these liquids range from 0mg to 11mg, so they are ideal for light to medium smokers.
Shortfills are larger bottles of nicotine free vape liquid. There is space left in the bottle for you to add your own nicotine shot if desired, or you can simply vape the nicotine free liquid.
For example: If you have a 50ml Shortfill (60ml bottle) with 50ml of eliquid in it, it has room for a 10ml sized nic shot. If you add a standard 18mg 10ml nic shot to this bottle you will get 60ml of 3mg nicotine strength eliquid and so on - adding 2 x 10 bottles of nic shot to 100ml (120ml bottle) shortfill you will also get 120ml of 3mg strength eliquid.
WHAT IS THE BEST ELIQUID RATIO/MIX?
There isn't one. The way a person vapes is very much down to their own taste, so there is no BEST ratio or mix.
However, we can recommend the most suitable vape liquid based on what device is being used and what kind of vaper you may be.
BEST ELIQUID RATIO/MIX FOR VAPE PENS
Traditional style vape pens are commonly used by smokers venturing in to vaping for the first time, these vape pens tend to have less surface area in the vape tanks or pods and heat the liquid at a relatively low temperature.
An 80% PG / 20% VG ot 50%VG/50% PG vape liquid is a good starting point. Anything lower than 50VG/50PG mix might see you needing to change your vape coils more frequently as the juice might be too thick.
BEST ELIQUID RATIO/MIX FOR MODS
Vape mods are usually higher powered, larger vape devices and are used for sub-ohm vaping. So using coils usually below a 0.50ohm rating. These kits have more power, usually 80 watts and above and can heat the vape liquid to a higher temperature and therfore can produce much more vapour and bigger clouds.
You would normally use vape liquids with a a mix ratio of 70% VG / 30% PG or more as they are thicker and work best with sub ohm vape coils and kits.
It is important to know that the resistance (ohms) of your vpae coil and the wattage that you output will impact how compatible the vape liquid is. The higher resistance of the vape coil, the less power it requires and vice versa.
BEST ELIQUID RATIO/MIX FOR DIFFERENT COILS
So if you’re using a standard 1.8ohm coil, your ideal output should not really be more than 10 watts. At this relatively low power, a thinner PG liquid is perfect and will handle higher nicotine strengths effectively. Using a thick VG liquid on these coils at this low temperature will result in an extremely unsatisfactory vape.
At the other end of the scale, a 0.5ohm coil requires more power (30 watts+) and heats to a higher temperature, so a thicker 80% VG eliquid would be best. Using a PG liquid in a sub ohm vape tank would result in lots of leaking and probable burning of the liquid.
So between these extremes is a sliding scale where you can adjust the ratio of your vape liquid, but you need to adhere to the following principles:
Low resistance coils need more power. More power results in higher temperatures. A higher temperature requires a thicker VG liquid.
Whereas higher resistance coils need less power. Less power results in a lower temperature. A low temperature requires a thinner PG liquid.
HOW TO CHOOSE THE RIGHT ELIQUID NICOTINE STRENGTH?
Choosing the right vape liquid type/strength is based on what kind of vape kit you use and what your motivation for vaping is. When choosing the right eliquid nicotine strength, all of these points come into play.
ELIQUID NICOTINE STRENGTH FOR A HEAVY SMOKER
Heavy smokers usually would smoke above 15 cigarettes per day. So it would be worth experimenting with 11mg, 16mg, 18mg and 20mg vape liquid strengths to see what satisfies your cravings over the first few weeks of vaping.
ELIQUID NICOTINE STRENGTH FOR A LIGHT SMOKER
Light smokers tend to smoke up to 10 cigarettes per day, so while there are nicotine cravings to be satisfied, the need for high strengths is not so crucial.
As a result of this, there is much more flexibility in terms of what type of liquids you can vape while successfully stifling those nicotine cravings.
The lowest strength nicotine is usually 3mg and is available across all vape liquid types including PG, VG and 50/50 mixes.
ELIQUID NICOTINE STRENGTH FOR A NON-SMOKER
If you’re not already a smoker, you do not need nicotine.
Therefore, if you are going to vape, always select the 0mg option. The 0mg strength is available across most of the eliquids available and all the shortfill bottles come in a 0mg strength.