The e-juice/e-liquid or juice as some of use like to call it is probably the most important element of your vaping device. The e-juice is the liquid we put in our atomizers (RDAs/RTAs), this gets heated up by the coil(s) inside the atomizer and turned into an aerosol or commonly called vapor.
E-juice usually is composed of the following ingredients: Propylene Glycol or PG, Vegetable Glycerine or VG, Nicotine (optional), and Flavoring.
Propylene Glycol or PG how most of us like to call it. This is an organic compound, it is viscous and colourless, nearly odourless but has a faintly sweet taste. PG has been found to be generally safe and is widely used in consumer products, food, pharmaceuticals, etc. PG can is also used in some food processing techniques and this is labelled as the E number E1520. Propylene Glycol is the pharmaceutical industry in asthma inhalers and nebulizers. Do not confuse Propylene Glycol with Ethylene glycol, Ethylene glycol is commonly used as a coolant and heat transfer agent. Ethylene glycol is TOXIC so do not confuse this with Propylene Glycol.
In vaping PG is the compound that gives us the “throat hit” sensation, PG is also used to carry the flavoring of our e-juice due to its bonding properties.
Vegetable Glycerine or VG, is a sugar alcohol compound widely used in pharmaceutical formulations. Sugar alcohol has nothing to do with sugar or alcohol, contrary to what the name may suggest. Sugar alcohol is not an alcoholic beverage or a sugar. Sugar alcohol are white water-soluble solids that can occur naturally or can be produced artificially from sugars.
This compound usually has applications in the food products, pharmaceutical and personal care products. VG will give less throat hit however it will produce more vapor. VG is a viscous liquid, it is colorless and odorless.
Some people might have allergic reactions to PG however so far there have been none reported for VG. If you know you are allergic to any of the compounds than do not vape before asking your practitioner. On the market you will also find PG-free liquids if you notice that you don’t get along great with liquids that do contain PG.
In vaping, the flavorings are usually food grade flavorings. Flavorings are useful since they enhance the vaping experience and are often a key element in helping people quit regular cigars. If you don’t like the taste or feel of something it very likely that you will not want to use or try that. Most known e-liquid companies in the business use food grade flavorings that are approved by the US Pharmacopeial Convention (USP). Before vaping on an e-juice always check the ingredients to ensure there are NO compounds like diacetyl or other harmful chemicals.
Some companies may choose to only list the 4 key ingredients: PG, VG, Nicotine and Flavorings. If you are unsure on what the flavoring contains ask before vaping on that particular e-juice. Some manufactures will include the full list of ingredients for the flavoring.
Most e-juices do contain Nicotine. Most known e-liquid companies use pharmaceutical grade nicotine in their e-liquids. The amount of nicotine used in an e-liquid is usually labeled with milligrams of nicotine. The higher the amount of nicotine used in an e-liquid the harder the throat hit. Nicotine levels in e-juice generally range from 0 mg (no nicotine) to 32 mg. One of the benefits of vaping is that over time you can gradually decrease the nicotine level of your vape however please take into consideration that it is not a general rule to use high nicotine level e-juices when first starting to vape. My recommendation would be to visit your local vape shop and try different levels of nicotine e-juices before settling on one. As I stated in a previous post, If you are not an ex-smoker than DO NOT VAPE.
Before vaping I have smoked cigars with 0.7 mg of nicotine per cigar. A pack of 20 cigars would total 14 mg of nicotine. Till now, for me personally the 6 mg of nicotine e-juice has been the right balance. I have tried different strengths before however I always felt that higher nicotine level e-juices were just to much to handle in terms of throat hit.
One of the misconceptions of nicotine is the fact that is causes cancer, this is not true. The tar and other chemicals compounds in the cigarettes or cigars causes cancer. In a cigar the tar provides most of the flavor, less tar, less flavor. Nicotine is however a highly addictive substance.
On the market you can find various types of e-juices with different flavorings and nicotine levels(0-32mg). E-juices are available in all ratios of PG/VG, e.g. 50/50 (PG/VG). Soon we will be doing a DYI tutorial for making your own e-liquid.