Mixing it up: how to create your perfect E-juice blend
For many smokers, the most immediate appeal of vaping is that it helps them to ‘kick the habit’ of those awful health-hazards that are traditional cigarettes. Yet, the deeper you get drawn into vaping (and, yes, you almost inevitably will be!), you soon discover that E-cigs offer other advantages too over conventional ciggies. To wit, did you know that you can control the level of vapour (or smoke) you generate, the ‘throat hit’ you receive and the flavours you can taste – over a relatively short period? All true. And it’s all because of the ability to customise the E-liquids that you load your E-cigs with – affordable and flexible then, E-juices are perfect for experimenting to ensure you get the perfect vaping experience just for you! And here’s how…
Vapour versus throat hit
One of the clever-clever reasons why you might want to mix E-liquids is to alter the amount of vapour you generate when using your E-cig or the ‘throat hit’ it gives you. This all comes down to the PG/ VG blend. What’s that? Your E-juice’s level of propylene glycol relative to its level of vegetable glycol (and vice versa).
In short, vegetable glycol (VG) determines the amount of vapour you’ll be able to create by puffing satisfyingly large clouds of smoke, while propylene glycol (PG) determines the level of ‘throat hit’; the just-as satisfying sensation of the vapour hitting the back of your throat as you inhale, which is comparable to the feeling you experience when inhaling a conventional cigarette. The PG/ VG blend tends to be measured as a ratio – or in percentages. For instance, the standard blend is usually 70% for PG and 30% for VG. By mixing and matching E-liquids then, you can play about with these percentages, depending on which you prefer – smoke clouds or throat hit.
Altering nicotine levels
As you may well be aware, one of the big draws to getting into vaping is that smokers are able to get their fill of nicotine but without all the other highly harmful ingredients of traditional cigarettes – the addictive nicotine, although not that harmful in itself, being the chemical that keeps smokers coming back for ‘the kick’. To that end, many vapers are also keen to reduce their nicotine dependency, which is something that’s readily possible via vaping. The nicotine you start with when you begin with E-cigarettes is, logically, likely to be set by that which you’re used to (and so ‘need’) from smoking – heavy smokers will doubtless desire a relatively high nicotine content in their E-liquids; lighter smokers a lower content.
Now, according to law laid down by the Tobacco Products Directive (TPD), the highest percentage of nicotine allowed in E-juice is 1.8%; it’s suggested this will likely suit smokers who get through between 10 and 20 ciggies (or a pack) a day. And admirably, the vaping industry helps enable E-cig users to reduce their nicotine levels – should they wish to do so – by selling E-liquids with different nicotine strengths (for instance, 18mg, 12mg, 6mg, 3mg and at the very bottom, of course, 0mg), thus supporting vapers in reducing their levels in incremental steps and at their own pace.
Finally, surely the most obvious appeal of mixing E-liquids is, yes, the opportunity to come up with your own awesome, home-made vapour flavours – your own one hit wonders; if you will! Don’t doubt it; this is where the fun undoubtedly comes in concocting your own E-juice blends. Unlike with boring old smoking, where you’re constantly restricted to one flavour per pack of cigarettes, with vaping you’re only limited for as long as your E-liquid bottle’s contents last in your E-cig’s tank, thus opening you up to trying everything from fruit flavours to confectionary tastes to, yes, tobacco tangs in relatively short time. And, needless to say, by experimenting via mixing E-liquids, you can come up with even more fantastic flavours! So get busy blending – and happy vaping!