When you start vaping, you’ll grab yourself a simple starter kit. You get a certain type of experience and it’s great. But it’s not until you’re hooked on vaping that your eyes are opened to all the different options and accessories you can use to create a unique vape.
From different types of e-liquids to all the amazing mods on the market, vaping has come a long way since its humble beginnings. There’s a real culture around vaping now, with vapers debating the merits and drawbacks of certain styles and preferences. To a beginner, it can seem a little overwhelming.
This guide is to help demystify all the options out there – we’re gonna help you narrow down your search so you can create the kind of vape experience that’s right for you.
When choosing e-liquids, there are three key elements you have to consider:
- Nicotine level.
- PG or VG.
We’ll deal with each of them.
E-liquids come in a huge range of different flavours, from traditional cigarettes to fruity or candy styles. If you can imagine it, someone has created a vape flavour of it.
Because most people start vaping as a route to quitting smoking, they will usually begin with the flavours that resemble their favourite cigarettes. From there, you might start to experiment with the more adventurous e-liquids.
A note on ingredients and quality. If you purchase cheap e-liquids, note that these are made with pre-mixed flavourings purchased in bulk from suppliers. Because of this, flavours will often taste exactly the same across companies. The ingredients in these flavourings are of a low-quality and can sometimes be dangerous (as in the case of diacetyl – a chemical used by some manufacturers to create a buttery flavour, that has been linked to a dangerous condition known as popcorn lung).
Premium e-liquid manufacturers take pride in producing unique flavours. Here at NZVAPOR, we use only the highest quality pharmaceutical grade ingredients and create our e-liquids in an ISO-accredited laboratory (you can take a squizz inside here). We’re the only e-liquid manufacturer in NZ who does this, which makes us a truly premium product for the real connoisseur.
When you purchase e-liquids, you have a choice of the amount of nicotine contained inside. If you purchase from a shop or dairy, you may be limited as to your options, but online at NZVAPOR you can choose across a wide range – from 0mg up to 24mg. You can select your strength on the website when you purchase.
- 0mg: Nicotine-free. No nicotine but you’ll get less of a throat hit than a nicotine-based e-liquid.
- 6mg: Extra light for light smokers (5-10 a day). Very mild throat hit.
- 12mg: This is the best starter option – you can then adjust up or down. A smooth throat hit that works well for 10-20 a day smokers.
- 18mg: A full throat hit for 15+ a day smokers. This is considered “regular” strength.
- 24mg: Heavy throat hit for tough vapers only. This is the cigar of vaping.
If you’re vaping to quit smoking, it’s a good idea to start with medium range nicotine levels, i.e. 12mg e-liquids and see how that feels. Too little nicotine will have you vaping all the time, but too much will give you a rotten headache.
We recommend vaping beginners start with our QWIT range of pre-filled cartridges. These will help you get a sense of vaping and nicotine levels. You can then adjust you nicotine up or down. Also suitable are the refillable and easy to use, buttonless pod devices such as SMOK Novo or Vladdin which will offer you a choice of 16 different e-liquids in different nic strengths.
For more experienced vapers, ex-smokers and those who are transitioning from tobacco, NZVAPOR now has a salted e-liquid range with higher nicotine levels (36mg and 48mg) that cater to heavier vapers. The nicotine salts (or nic salts) are being added to ensure a smooth delivery even with higher nicotine level liquids.
PG and VG
E-liquids contain only a few main ingredients. Most contain nicotine, of course, and flavourings. The bulk of the e-liquid is a mixture of two ingredients – Propylene Glycol (PG) and Vegetable Glycerin (VG). A different percentage of each ingredient will produce a distinct vaping experience.
PG delivers maximum flavour, but the clouds of vapor it produces are quite weak. Because VG is more viscous, it produces massive clouds of vapor. But it can have a sweeter taste that gets in the way of the flavour a bit.
Most starter e-liquids come in a ratio of around 40% PG to 60% VG. This strikes a good balance between flavour and cloud. However, some vapers want more flavour, or more cloud, so we produce ranges with higher PG or higher VG to suit them. Our VAPEJUICE range caters to the high VG, experienced vaper who likes to blow big, beautiful clouds.
So which is right for you? That depends on what you like, and only you can answer that question. PG has the great flavour and the heavier throat hit. We find many ex-smokers prefer PG (especially in the beginning) as it mimics the throat hit from smoking. PG is also better for ‘mouth-to-lung’ vaping.
VG has a lighter throat hit, and as we’ve already mentioned the thicker, sweeter juice can change the flavour of your e-liquids a little. But it’s awesome for blowing big clouds of vape. If you’re a cloud-chaser, you’re going to want high-VG e-liquids and a special type of tank called a ‘sub-ohm.’ This tank uses the right type of wicking for the denser liquid.
If you’re struggling, we have a great article that can help you choose between high PG and high VG.
Note: Some people can have an allergic reaction to PG. If you’re itching, sneezing, or struggling to breathe after vaping, switch to VG e-liquids and see if that makes a difference.
As you learn more about vaping, you’ll discover that experienced vapers take their equipment very seriously. While beginners usually choose a starter kit that’s designed to be easy to use, advanced vapers want to experiment.
They like to be able to pick and choose different components in order to get a completely personalised vaping experience.
This is where ‘mods’ come in. A vape mod is a device designed with advanced vapers in mind. They follow the same basic concept as the simpler e-cigarette devices, but they have lots of additional bells and whistles. Using a vape mod requires care and maintenance, and you’ll need to follow battery safety procedures so you don’t injure yourself or others.
NZVAPOR stocks only the highest quality mods and accessories for serious vapers.
Components of a vape mod
There are three key elements to any vape mod that provides endless opportunities for customization.
- Battery: This is the most advanced feature of a vape mod. In a mod, there’s no wiring/electricity between the battery and coil. This means you have tight control over the temperature – so you can configure your mod for the perfect vape. Mods usually use Lithium ion 18650 rechargeable batteries. Smaller mods will sometimes use in-built rechargeable batteries with a USB charger.
- Tank: This is where you put your e-liquid. You can choose from a RTA (rebuildable tank atomizer) or an RDA (rebuildable dripping atomizer). RTAs allow you to quickly switch between different flavours, and RDAs allow you to control the drip of e-liquid onto the coil to savour the flavour hit.
- Coil: The coil is what creates the vapor. You can choose a rebuildable coil – so you can construct it again once it starts to lose power – or a more reliable coil that will give you the same experience every time you vape.
One thing to keep in mind if you’re considering a mod is that the batteries need to be treated with caution. Have you ever seen sensational articles in the news about e-cigarettes exploding? This does happen – but it’s always mods and always when people aren’t being safe with the batteries.
Here’s what you need to do to look after your mod batteries.
- Buy quality gear from a reputable source. With mods, you get what you pay for. Make sure you choose quality – at NZVAPOR we stock only the best quality mods and advanced gear.
- Choose the right batteries. Make sure you’re using the right batteries, especially if you’re using a sub-ohm mod. Also, be aware of counterfeit batteries and only buy from reliable stores.
- Use a dedicated charger. It’s safer to use a charger then to charge directly from your mod. We recommend this if possible.
- Keep the battery wraps intact. Always check your wraps. If you notice a nick in the wrap, you can rewrap your batteries. Don’t use batteries with damaged wraps.
- Store batteries in cases. Don’t just drop them in your bag.
- Avoid extreme temperatures. Too hot and too cold can damage your batteries.
- Recycle old batteries. Your batteries will only last a certain amount of charges before they start to lose capacity. When this happens, recycle them at a battery recycling location. Lithium ion batteries can short-circuit while in a rubbish bin, and start a fire.
Check out this article from Vapeloft for more tips on battery safety.
Vape accessories include all the pieces you need to build the vape of your dreams. Usually, when we talk about vape accessories, we mean chargers, coils, tanks, and other pieces for mods.
However, there are other accessories vapers might be familiar with – including drip tips, cotton, carry cases, fill-it-yourself kits (for creating your own e-liquids), USB chargers, and merchandise.
Vaping has grown into a vibrant culture with its own slang, jokes, and celebrities. You can now buy t-shirts, patches, bags, and other gear with your favourite brands and vape slogans.
As you can see, there are so many options available to help you create a unique vape experience. All that’s left for you to decide is what kind of vaper you are. Match your vape style to the right equipment with our online VAPEFINDER tool.