If you’ve made the decision to trade your pre-filled e-cigarette for a new vaping device that you can fill yourself, you’re going to look back on that choice one day as one of the best decisions you ever made during your time as a vaper. If you live in the United States, you’re well aware that a pre-filled vaping device gives you a severely limited vaping experience due to federal flavor restrictions that restrict all pre-filled vaping devices to just tobacco and menthol flavors.
Even without that flavor restriction, though, no vaping device with pre-filled pods or cartridges has more than just a few different flavors available. It’s simply not possible to produce pre-filled vaping devices in the same variety of flavors available in the wide world of bottled vape liquid. Another major benefit of using a refillable vaping device is the fact that bottled e-liquid costs dramatically less on a price-per-milliliter basis than pre-filled vape pods and cartridges.
Switching to a refillable vaping device, in short, is a huge win from both the flavor and cost standpoints. It’s going to make your vaping experience better in every way.
Before you can actually have that much-improved vaping experience, though, you’ve got to choose the right e-liquid – and if you’ve ever looked at the selection of vape juice at an online or brick-and-mortar vape shop, you know that buying e-liquid can be extremely overwhelming if you don’t already know what you want – and if you don’t buy the right vape juice, you’re not going to have a good experience.
We don’t want that to happen.
If you’re about to buy bottled e-liquid for the first time, this is the guide for you. Reading it, you’re going to learn a bit about the different flavor profiles that might appeal to you. More importantly, you’re also going to learn how to select the correct nicotine strength for your vaping device and how to know if the nicotine strength you’re using isn’t quite right for your needs. Let’s begin!
Flavor Is Everything in Vaping – How to Choose the Right One
The first factor that’ll determine the type of experience you have with an e-liquid is the e-liquid’s flavor. There are literally hundreds of different e-liquid flavor profiles in the world today, which means that there’s definitely something out there for everyone. In fact, that’s exactly what you should keep in mind if you don’t love the flavor of the first vape juice you buy – you will definitely find something with a flavor you love as long as you never stop experimenting.
So, how do you choose an e-liquid flavor if you’ve never bought bottled vape juice before? One of the first things you’ll notice when you start shopping for e-liquid is that the flavor profiles in bottled e-liquid have almost nothing in common with the flavor profiles in pre-filled e-cigarette cartridges and pods. That’s especially true in the United States, where pre-filled vaping products aren’t available in flavors other than plain tobacco and plain menthol. Most of the companies that produce bottled e-liquids don’t even offer plain tobacco and menthol flavors – that’s how different the two sides of the vaping industry are.
So, how do you choose an e-liquid flavor that’s likely to appeal to you? A good way to start is by sampling some of the flavor profiles that other vapers enjoy. These are just a few of the flavor profiles that vapers are really enjoying these days.
- Fruity flavors like mango, blueberry, strawberry, apple and blue raspberry
- Cereal flavors like fruit cereal, cinnamon toast cereal and chocolate cereal
- Dessert flavors like tiramisu, cake, pie and custard
Since you can’t know what your favorite flavor will be if you haven’t tried any of them yet, it’s a good idea to try a few different flavor categories when you buy e-liquid for the first time.
Choose Your Nicotine Strength Based on Your Vaping Equipment
The greater the vapor production of your hardware, the lower the nicotine strength of your e-liquid should be. That’s because using a higher-output device means that you’ll inhale more e-liquid with each puff. There are three general types of refillable vaping devices. Listed in ascending order of vapor production, the three types of vaping devices are:
- Pod systems store their e-liquid in removable plastic pods. They’re generally the smallest vaping devices and are optimized for the mouth-to-lung inhaling style that smokers – and new vapers – generally prefer.
- Vape pens are cylindrical vaping devices that are usually similar in length to ballpoint pens but are generally a bit wider. Vape pens are typically more powerful than pod systems but less powerful than mods.
- Vape mods are usually shaped like small boxes and are the largest and most powerful of all vaping devices.
With that information in mind, here is some general guidance that can help you choose the right nicotine strength for your vaping device.
- If you use a pod system, you will probably have the best experience with nicotine salt e-liquid, which is usually available in a lower strength of about 20-25 mg/ml and a higher strength around 40-50 mg/ml. If you already vape, choose the nicotine strength closest to what you’re currently using. If you’re new to vaping, start with the higher nicotine strength if you smoke around a pack of cigarettes per day. If you smoke significantly less than a pack per day, start with the lower nicotine strength.
- If you use a vape pen, a nicotine strength around 6 mg/ml is usually a good starting point.
- If you use a mod, you should start with a nicotine strength of 3 mg/ml.
The above advice is intended to serve as a starting point. You may need to adjust your nicotine strength from there depending on your needs and the performance level of the device you’re using. How can you tell whether the nicotine strength that you’re using might not be right for you? We’ll answer that question next.
Adjust Your Nicotine Strength if Necessary
When you try your first bottle of e-liquid, you may find that you don’t feel quite normal if the nicotine strength that you’re using isn’t right for you. Do you need to increase or lower your nicotine strength? Here’s how to tell.
- If the e-liquid that you’re using is too high in nicotine, you’ll find the vapor difficult to inhale because it’ll bother your throat and lungs. You may also feel a more powerful nicotine rush than what you’re accustomed to.
- If the e-liquid that you’re using is too low in nicotine, you won’t enjoy your vaping experience because you won’t derive any satisfaction from it. Even if you vape constantly, you’ll still crave cigarettes.