Choosing The Right Nicotine Strength
When making the switch from smoking to vaping, it is unclear to many what e-liquid strength is right for them.
What Is Nicotine Strength?
Premixed e-liquid will indicate the nicotine strength in either ml (millilitres) or mg (milligrams). For example, a 10ml bottle of e-liquid which has a 1.2% strength means that it contains 0.12ml or 120mg of nicotine.
A 0.3% e-liquid is considered a low strength whereas a 1.8% is a strong vape juice. With a stronger e-liquid vapers experience a more powerful throat hit. This is more suited to heavy smokers who require more nicotine so someone who uses less than 5 cigarettes a day will only require a weaker e-liquid strength.
The Right Nicotine Strength For Your Vape Kit
Early iterations of e-cigarettes had little adjustment, offering a single output wattage and a fixed airflow. Now vapers have endless options to find their ideal way of vaping. This means the throat hit can now be controlled by the e-liquid and the output wattage of the e-cig.
When vaping at a lower wattage it takes longer for the coils to heat up, resulting in less vapour and a weaker throat hit.
Whereas at higher wattages the coil heats up quicker producing more vapour and a stronger throat hit.
It is important to find the right balance of output wattage an e-liquid strength as using a high strength vape juice with a sub-ohm coil will be far too strong. Also, vaping with less power using weaker e-liquid will not provide enough of a throat hit. The aim is to find the right combination to satisfy your nicotine requirements.
The Right Nicotine Strength For Your Vaping Technique
The type of e-cigarette vapers use depends on their vaping technique. Pod style devices with high resistance coils are suited towards MTL vapers, whereas more powerful sub ohm kits are designed for DL vaping.
Mouth to Lung
Mouth-to-lung vaping is the technique that many vapers use as this resembles the method most smokers use. This technique involves taking in the vapour into you mouth before inhaling it into your lungs. The tighter airflow mimics the draw from a cigarette while providing a strong throat hit. When used with nic salts it provides an even closer sensation to smoking. This is because nic salts replicate the natural salt found in tobacco leaves to create a smoother draw and sharper nicotine hit. We stock a wide range of nic salts for new vapers who are looking for an e-liquid that provides an experience close to smoking.
Whereas MTL vapers take in vapour into their mouth before inhaling, DL vapour directly inhale into their lungs. This technique requires a devices with a more open airflow to allow vapers to easily inhale.
DL vaping uses up much more e-liquid with each draw the MTL vaping so the e-liquid used does not need to be as strong. Also, using a high strength nicotine for DL vaping can be too harsh and unpleasant.
Direct lung vaping can be done with 50/50 vape juice. Although for the best performance at higher wattages high VG e-liquid is the best choice. VG (vegetable glycerine) is one of the main ingredients in vape juice and is what creates the vapour itself. As this is a thicker e-liquid it requires higher wattages to produce the best flavour and throat hit.
Some brands offer a high VG e-liquid in 10ml such as Double Drip. However, most high VG vape juice comes in larger short fill bottles. Because of the larger bottles shortfill e-liquid does not contain nicotine. There is space left in the bottle for a nic shot to be added which is what turns the nicotine free short fill into an e-liquid containing nicotine.
One bottle of 1.8% nic shot will create a 0.3% e-liquid when added to a 50ml shortfill.
Although this has a weaker nicotine strength, the amount of e-liquid that DL vapers use means they will also take in more nicotine. For example an MTL vaper should only need one 10ml bottle of e-liquid a day whereas a DL vaper will require more. Therefore the e-liquid they use can be weaker but will still provide enough nicotine as they will use more vape juice.
There are some DL vapers who prefer a tighter draw, these are know as restricted direct-lung vapers. This technique is the same as direct-lung vaping so requires the same sub-ohm vape kit to produce enough vapour but the airflow is adjusted to be more restricted.
Choosing Your Nicotine Strength
This guide should provide enough information to find the right vape kit, technique and strength that is best for you. If you are still unsure on the strength to get started with here are some suggestions.
Heavy smokers who require more than 20 cigarettes a day should start with a 1.8% e-liquid. Between 20-10 should use a 1.2%. Less than 10 should get enough nicotine for a 0.6% or 0.3% vape juice.
Unless you are vaping high VG e-liquid with a powerful device you should aim to only need one bottle of 10ml e-liquid a day. If you feel like you need to use more then you should increase the strength of the e-liquid rather than going through another bottle as this is more cost effective. However, if you are feeling unwell when vaping you should lower you e-liquid strength. When using a e-liquid that is too strong you may experience headaches, dizziness, mild nausea and coughing.
It is all about finding the right balance. Every vaper is different so it may take time to find the right strength to suit you. If you want to learn more read our guide About Vape Liquid.
Read: The 10 Best Cheap E Liquid in the UK
If you need any help in choosing the right nicotine strength, look at the bottom right of your screen for our live chat window to receive real-time advice (Live Chat available Mon-Fri 9am-4:45pm).