If you are new to vaping, the whole experience can seem daunting. As fast as the industry grew, the terminology of vaping seemed to grow even faster. Luckily, it needn’t be complicated to get started.
There are plenty of fantastic kits that make it simple for the newbie to begin a vaping journey.
Once started, most vapers begin experimenting to find their perfect vaping experience. A great place to start is with the e-liquids they use. There are several main factors to consider when choosing an e-liquid:
- Nicotine strength
- PG/VG ratio
All these factors play a massive part in the “vaping experience”, much of the choice is down to personal preference and the equipment you use.
This guide breaks down everything you need to know about choosing the perfect e-liquid.
Choosing the right strength
The first choice that most vapers need to concern themselves with is choosing the right nicotine strength.
It is important to get this right, choose too low a level and you may not satisfy your craving and succumb to the temptation of cigarettes!
However, this doesn’t necessarily mean plumping for the strongest either. For many people, this will be overkill and lead to an unpleasant introduction to vaping.
E-liquids are sold at a variety of strengths, usually 0mg, 3mg, 6mg, 12mg, and 18mg. The figure represents the strength of the nicotine solution.
The ideal strength of nicotine varies by individual, but a good rule of thumb to find the best strength to use when starting is described in the table below.
|Cigarettes Smoked||E-liquid strength|
|1 – 2 per day||3mg|
|10 or under||6mg|
|10 – 20||12mg|
|20 or more||18mg|
Many vapers will gradually reduce the level of nicotine in their e-liquid, with some even switching to nicotine-free liquids.
Whilst this reduction is often because people want to wean themselves off nicotine, it is also frequently as a result of upgrading to systems that produce more vape; hence they require a lesser concentration to absorb the same amount.
Once you have the strength right, it is time to do some fine-tuning. The VG/PG ratio affects how much vape is produced and how much of a “throat hit” the vape produces (the latter is also affected by nicotine levels).
Before we delve into the ratios themselves, let’s discuss just what PG and VG are.
What are PG and VG?
These are the two compounds that make up the liquid, except for the nicotine and a little flavouring; these are the only two ingredients in any quality e-liquid.
What is PG?
Propylene Glycol (PG) is commonly used as a food and medication additive, as well as being frequently used in cosmetics and antifreeze. In terms of e-ciggy usage, it is the thinner of the two liquids and holds more flavour than VG. It is also what produces most of the familiar “throat hit” that smokers associate with the habit.
What is VG?
Vegetable Glycerin (VG) is another common food additive. Usually, it is used to sweeten and thicken products. It is thicker than PG and produces more and a denser vapour. Because of its sweetness, it holds flavour less well and also gives less of a throat hit.
What PG/VG Ratio is best?
There is no definitive answer to this. It largely depends on personal references, the equipment being used, and what type of vaper you become.
For beginners looking to choose, it is best to aim for e-liquids that are biased towards PG, usually a 60/40 ratio (PG/VG), although many beginners also find that 50/50 mixes work well.
Once you get above 50% VG, then beginner starter kits and more basic systems can struggle to cope with the thicker liquids. Heavier VG ratios are usually used by experienced vapers using more advanced gear.
The enhanced flavours and throat hit from using 60/40 or 50/50 liquids are also appreciated by beginners looking to replicate the smoking experience more fully.
The Quality of the E-liquid
Choosing e-liquid of the right quality is essential, both for the best vape experience and, more importantly, the safest vape experience. Cheap imported brands can contain chemicals that have known health-risk associations.
Basically, if the price of an e-liquid looks too good to be true, then it probably is. At Direct2u Ecigs, we stock only the finest brands that use the highest quality food-grade ingredients.
All our suppliers also adhere to the strictest manufacturing standards.
What flavour to choose?
This is the most personal part of the vaping journey. Understandably, most newbies will start with tobacco flavours, but a large percentage of these will quickly get adventurous and try other flavours.
It is impossible to even begin and cover the range of available flavours, but some of the most popular categories are described briefly below:
● Tobacco Flavours
These cover the whole range of flavours familiar to smokers. From standard cigarettes to rolling tobacco, from cigars to pipes, there is a choice to suit all tastes. There are also plenty of menthol options available, and even some offer the taste of a shisha infusion.
● Fruit Flavours
Just about any fruit you can think of is available as a standalone flavour. Fruits are often mixed to produce cocktails like a “citrus punch” or pina colada. These are another category where the flavours are often mixed with a touch of menthol to produce zingy flavours like mixed fruit ice.
Coca-Cola, coffee, tea, even milk are other common flavours. Some are even used in cocktails to produce Irish Whiskey or Rum and Coke flavours.
An ever-popular choice is from the dessert menu! Custards and cakes make up some of the more mouth-watering choices. Choose from a massive range, including custard banana caramel and custard cinnamon Danish, to name just two.
Trying different flavours is fantastic fun and one of the great thrills of vaping. Vaping the same flavour day after day is fine but chopping and changing are what most vapers prefer as a great way of keeping the habit fresh.
As a newbie, the two essentials are to get the nicotine level and the PG/VG ratio correct. As long as you get these right, then you are destined for a great vape experience. The nicotine level is dependent on how many you smoked, and at first, keep the PG level to at least 50%, and you should be good.
After that, the fun part begins, and you can experiment with flavours, strengths, and ratios are your vaping journey progresses.