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Learn about vaping

Vaping is one of the fastest-growing markets worldwide, with millions turning to vaping as their quit smoking solution. Most smokers wishing to quit turn to vaping as the solution to quit once and for all.

But what is vaping, and what equipment is there on the market? Let’s take a look.

What is Vaping - Contents
Vaping Covers a number of different subjects. We’ve broken it down to make things a little easier to navigate:

Section 1: Types of Vaping Equipment

Section 2: What is E-liquid?

Section 3: How Do Vapes Work?

Section 4: How Do People Vape?

The Types of Vaping Equipment

There is no industry standard to how vaping equipment is named. Often a term will be kicked around forums and popular YouTubers will repeat the terms in their review videos and the names stick.

The common term for all vape equipment is known as the electronic cigarette, commonly shortened to the e-cigarette or e-cig. This is the term that the media tend to use when describing the equipment, but there are many different forms of e-cigarette which include the following:

  • Cigalike – This is the e-cigarette that was initially released to the market back in 2006, initially designed by Hon Lik, a 52-year-old pharmacist. The general design is very similar to the traditional cigarette.
    The Cigalike e-cig

    A Cigalike

  • Vape Pens – The most popular type of e-cigarette currently sold. They are more efficient than the Cigalike type and proved the user with more vapor which improves their vaping experience. The design resembles a large, fat pen, hence where the name originated.
    Typical vape pen

    A Vape Pen

  • Vape Pods – Becoming increasingly popular in 2018 thanks to their slick designs and ease of use. Pods can be very small and discrete, yet still, produce a good amount of vapor. They are often no bigger than a small pen, but more box-shaped with removable pods which hold the e-liquid.
    Typical vape pod

    A Vape Pod

  • Box Mods – The box mod is often referred to as the vape mod which can hold external batteries (often two 18650 batteries) although many also have built-in batteries. They are a lot more powerful, many with the ability to fire up to and above 200W. In comparison to vape pens and vape pods that fire at around 5-20W. This means the design of box mods are a lot bigger and box-like.
    Typical Box Mod design

    A Box mod

  • Squonk Mods – Squonkers as they are also known as are modeled off the box mod but have a rubber/silicone bottle within the design to hold the e-liquid. Squeezing the bottle (or squonking), pushes the e-liquid from the reservoir into the tank. This design was created to satisfy vapers who drip e-liquid directly on to the coil, but had to carry a bottle around with them.
    typical Squonker

    A Squonk Mod

  • Unregulated or Mech mods – Also known as mechanical mods, these are often handmade and consist of only the basic components without any circuitry to control the power. Simply fire the button and you get the full power the battery has to offer. As these have no safety circuitry, it is highly advised to stay away from unregulated mods! It is these types of mods you hear about in newspapers when someone’s e-cig blew up!
    Mechanical mod

    A Mech Mod

Each of the e-cigarettes above has a form of tank attached either screwed in separately or built-in. They hold both a coil and the e-liquid which is vaped.

What is e-liquid?

Every type of e-cigarette above and on the market requires e-liquid which can either be sold in a separate bottle or comes in a prefilled pod, tank or cartomizer. They consist of 4 basic ingredients:

  • Propylene Glycol (PG)
  • Vegetable Glycerin (VG)
  • Flavoring
  • Nicotine

Ratios of PG/VG

It’s common knowledge of experienced vapers that VG is a lot thicker and creates the thicker clouds, whilst PG holds the flavor more. It is therefore often up to the vaper to choose their VG/PG ratio to meet their particular taste. The two common ratios are 50/50 and 70/30 VG/PG.

Nicotine Strengths

One great thing with e-cigarettes is that you can control the nicotine level. Smokers often start high and slowly work their way down.

Until recently the highest nicotine levels where 24mg per 100, but with the recent release of nicotine salts this is now a lot higher due to their smoother draw. It is only recommended to use the higher nicotine salts with low powered devices like the cigalike and vape pods.

It’s often a good idea to slowly reduce your e-liquid nicotine levels, especially if you’re looking to quit vaping in the future.

How Do Vapes Work?

All e-cigarettes, regardless of their type and size work with the same principles. They have a power source which is either internal or removable batteries, a coil wrapped around a small piece of cotton and e-liquid to soak the cotton. When the coil heats and the air is drawn around the coil, the e-liquid evaporates creating a vapor. This vapor is drawn into the lungs and vaped.

Although the principles are simple, each part has a varying degree of complexity. Take the coils for example, which can be made of various metals like stainless steel for standard wattage vaping, titanium or nickel to allow for temperature control vaping. As well as having different styles of coils with different wrap designs to produce a more custom vape. Mesh coils have also been introduced which instead of a typical wound wire consist of a mesh-like design and produce even greater flavor.

Vaping is one of the most misunderstood products on the market, thanks to the taboo associated with smoking. To learn more about the truth, read our vaping guides page.

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Nicholas King
Nicholas King

Hi! I’m Nicholas King, the founder, and Chief Editor at SmokeTastic. As an ex-smoker and now vaping enthusiast for over 13 years myself, I understand the transition between smoking and vaping. My aim is to share useful information about all the different vape and e-cig products on the market, self-help tips, and detailed reviews.

I hope you find something on SmokeTastic that helps you with your decision process.

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