If you were to ask 90% of the people who switched from e-cigs back to traditional cigarettes why they did it, they’re answers would include one word…
“The e-liquid just didn’t taste good.”
“The tobacco-flavoured e-liquid didn’t taste like tobacco.”
“The e-liquid wasn’t strong enough.”
“There was not enough nicotine in the e-liquid to calm my cravings.”
That’s no surprise, really…
Most people who switch to e-cigarettes don’t know much about the process. They buy a random e-cig on a whim and expect it to work like magic.
You can’t blame them. That’s how e-cigs are marketed (for the most part). And as a result, countless unsuspecting smokers never succeed at making the switch.
But that’s not you.
How do I know? I know because you’re reading this article, right now. You want to be informed. You want to find the best e-liquid for meeting your personal needs.
You’re already headed in the right direction.
Below, you’ll find the five key things you need to know about e-liquids before you buy your first (or next) bottle.
Follow these suggestions and I can guarantee you that your venture into the world of electronic cigarettes will be successful.
1) Be willing to experiment with different flavours.
Flavour is hands-down the most influential factor as to whether a person continues smoking e-cigs or not.
Simply put, if the e-liquid doesn’t taste good, they won’t continue to smoke it.
That’s completely understandable. But the problem lays in the fact the majority of people who don’t like the first couple of flavours they try tend to give up and “call it quits.”
Very seldom does someone find the flavour that’s best for them in the first couple of liquids they try.
They must experiment and try as many new flavours as possible in order to find out what works best for them.
Be open to trying several different flavours from several different brands, and don’t give up until you find the right one.
2) Tobacco will never taste like tobacco.
In all my years of smoking e-cigs and personal vaporizers, I have yet to come across an e-liquid that tastes exactly like smoking a tobacco cigarette.
Yet, that’s one of the more popular complaints from new e-cig users.
Go ahead and come to terms with the fact that tobacco-flavoured e-cigs will never taste exactly like tobacco. If you’re looking for a more authentic tobacco cigarette experience, try going with a menthol flavour.
While still not identical to its tobacco-based counterpart, it’s about the closest you’ll get. And if menthol’s not your thing, there are hundreds of other flavours for you to try.
3) There are multiple levels of strengths found in e-liquids.
Almost all e-liquid providers offer flavours at different nicotine levels. And these levels greatly influence the strength of the e-liquid.
Knowing the difference between these strengths in combination with their throat-hit level (see #4 below) is essential to choosing the right e-liquid.
There are essentially three main nicotine-strength levels:
1. Low-strength liquids typically contain between 6 and 10 milligrams of nicotine per milliliter of liquid. The strength profile of low-level liquids resembles smoking an ultra-light cigarette.
2. Medium-strength liquids contain between 10 and 16 milligrams of nicotine per milliliter of liquid. The strength profile of mid-level liquids most closely resembles smoking a light cigarette.
3. High-strength liquids contain between 16 and 24 milligrams of nicotine per milliliter of liquid. The strength profile of high-level liquids resembles smoking a medium-to-red cigarette.
*Special Note: Nicotine strength can be higher than 24mg. It’s not as common, but provides a strength profile resembling that of an unfiltered cigarette.
4) Different e-liquid ingredients mean different throat hit levels.
In addition to nicotine concentration, the carrier liquids of an e-liquid play a large role in influencing its throat hit strength (the amount of “kick” in your throat).
The major carrier liquids include propylene glycol (PG), vegetable glycerin (VG), and polyethylene glycol 400 (PEG 400). Of these three, PG and VG are by far the most popular.
In the spirit of keeping things simple, remember the following:
- If an e-liquid contains more PG, it will provide a stronger throat hit.
- While a VG-heavy e-liquid will provide a thicker cloud of “smoke” (vapour).
The most common carrier liquid ratios found in pre-mixed e-liquids include 100% PG, 100% VG, 50-50 PG/VG, and 80-20 PG/VG.
5) Not all e-liquids are created equal.
As it stands now, the MHRA does not regulate the electronic cigarettes industry (which will change in 2016).
While you can argue whether that’s ultimately a good or bad thing, one thing you can’t argue is that each e-liquid manufacturer currently regulates its own product.
What does that mean for you?
Unfortunately, it means that it’s possible for manufacturers to create and distribute e-liquids that do not comply with government regulations and/or are poorly manufactured.
For that reason, always make sure you do your due diligence before purchasing an e-liquid. Research where it was manufactured, how it was manufactured, and the ingredients used within the liquid.
A stockist I personally use and recommend – They have a HUGE range of e-liquids to cater to anyone’s taste buds:
Now it’s your turn . . .
Do you have certain things you personally look for when buying e-liquids? If so, what are they and how have they helped you? Share it with us in the comments below!