An Idiots Guide to Vaping

Are you ready to live a healthier, happier life? Put down your cigarettes and pick up a delicious vape. Not only will your body feel the difference, but so will your bank. Vaping is an affordable hobby that gives your lungs and savings room to breathe. 

Follow along with our Idiots Guide to Vaping as we take you through the basics. We’ll tell you all about the different types of vaping, what devices you can purchase and how to choose the perfect e-liquid

What is vaping?

Vaping is a form of smoking that involves the inhalation of vapour. Electronic devices heat liquids (sometimes known as e-liquid or ‘vape juice’) that contain nicotine, marijuana, or flavourings. 

To inhale the vapours, all electronic devices must have the following mechanical components: 

  • Mouthpiece: This is the most straightforward part of your vape: it goes in your mouth so you can inhale the vapour. Depending on the kind of vape you buy, mouthpieces may be interchangeable. 

  • Cartridge: The cartridge of your vape contains the e-liquid and connects to the mouthpiece. 

  • Heating Element/Atomizer: Every device must contain a heating element. Most vapes have a coil made from resistance wire wrapped around wicking material. It activates and heats your e-liquid when you press the button or inhale. 

  • Battery: No e-cigarette is complete without a battery! The battery works at a higher wattage than your coil, which gives it the power to vaporise your e-liquid. 

  • It’s plain to see that the essential components of all vape devices are the same. However, when it comes to vaping styles, everyone has their preferences. There are two main types of vaping: MTL (mouth-to-lung) and DTL (direct-to-lung) vaping. 

    What is MTL vaping?

    Mouth-to-lung vaping is the style most commonly used by global vapers. The MTL style involves taking the e-liquid vapour into your mouth before inhaling it into your lungs. MTL vaping replicates the technique of smoking cigarettes and can feel like a more natural process. 

    What is DTL vaping?

    Direct-to-lung vaping is more like taking a breath: the e-liquid travels directly to your lungs and out the mouth. DTL vaping is more suitable for experienced vapers who are used to smoking dense vapours. 

    Is vaping safe?

    Vaping is not a risk-free hobby but is less harmful than smoking tobacco products. The safety of using vapes and e-liquids is most people’s primary concern. Does it damage your lungs? Is it better to continue smoking cigarettes? 

    Public Health England has estimated that vaping is 95% safer than smoking cigarettes. While some e-liquids contain nicotine, the chemicals believed to cause smoking-related diseases, such as cancer and heart disease, are not present. 

    Most e-liquids are only four ingredients: nicotine, water, propylene glycol (PG) and vegetable glycerine (VG). The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has recognised PG as generally safe for human consumption, and VG is a common ingredient in food and skincare products. 

    Now that we know vaping is a safe alternative to tobacco, what types of devices can you purchase? 

    Types of Vapes

    Disposable Vapes

    Most newbie vapers start their journey with a disposable vape. They are one-time-use-only devices that contain a pre-chosen e-liquid. Disposable vapes are closed systems, meaning you cannot replace any components once they deplete. 

    They are inexpensive, available to buy from countless brands and come in various sizes, flavours and designs. However, once their battery dies or your e-liquid runs out, you must purchase a new one.

    Vape Pens

    Many vape pens come in ‘starter kits’, and their tall, cylindrical shape resembles a pen. Unlike disposable vapes, they are open systems where you can replace elements like the cartridge, mouthpiece and coil. 

    Pens for MTL and DTL vaping are available, and some components can do both. These models offer a very straightforward vaping experience and are affordable and limited in their features. 


    Vape mods, also known as ‘box mods’, have significantly larger batteries than other vapes. They offer a more customisable experience with options to control temperature, airflow, cloud intensity and the device’s wattage. 

    Experienced vapers who have found their niche may find box mods more enjoyable. 

    What e-liquid should you choose?

    Now that we’ve covered the main types of vapes, which e-liquids should you use? With millions of flavour combinations on the market, choosing the perfect flavour is a matter of personal preference.

    However, there are other considerations you must take into account. 

    PG/VG Ratio 

    As we mentioned, most e-liquids are composed of two main chemical components: Propylene Glycol and Vegetable Glycerine. 

    PG is a food additive that is considered safe by the FDA. The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) deems PG harmless when consumed at an average daily dietary intake of 23 mg/kg (dependent on body weight).

    VG originates from soybeans, coconut oils and palm oils. Its syrup-like viscosity makes it an excellent flavour carrier. 

    The most common form of e-liquid is a 50/50 mixture of PG/VG: this provides users with a satisfying throat hit balanced with impressive cloud production. However, if you’re a former smoker who needs to feel that hit a little more, a PG-dominant 70/30 PG/VG e-liquid may be more suitable. 

    Or, you could be a cloud-chaser determined to out-smoke your friends. A 70/30 VG-dominant e-liquid will shroud you in smoke and are better for those who practice DTL vaping with a ‘sub-ohm’ coil. These are coils with a resistance of less than 1 ohm. 

    Start your vaping journey! 

    Now that you know more about the basics of vaping, are you ready to try it yourself? 

    Find a device that’s right for you and grab a delicious E-Liquid to complete your purchase. Whether you have a sweet tooth, a love for menthol or want to stick with tobacco, you’ll soon find a vape juice that works for you.

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