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Are you freaked out by your vape juice ingredients? Don't fret. We've got some answers for you. If you've ever looked at the ingredients in your vape juice, you may have gotten a shock at some of the scary-sounding names that are in your favorite brands. Let's set aside the sciencey-sounding names of a minute. This article will help familiarize you with the basic ingredients found in your vape juice. We will demystify the contents and help you become a more informed customer.
Different vape juice ingredients can react differently in various e-cigarette devices, so it's essential to at least be familiar with the basics. Any reputable vape company will be transparent about the ingredients that go into their juice and should make sure that they're as pure as possible. If you're buying a vape juice and you're not sure what's in it, then you could be putting your health at risk. It's a far better option to spend the extra money and get yourself a reputable brand instead.
Table of Contents
- The Main Components of Vape Juice
- Vegetable Glycerine
- Propylene Glycol
- Vaping VG vs. PG
- Nicotine in Vape Juice
- Vape Juice Flavoring
The Main Components of Vape Juice
All vape juices need something that makes up the vapor and carries the flavor and nicotine. The two main compounds found in most vape juice are vegetable glycerine (VG) and propylene glycol (PG). Both VG and PG are clear and odorless liquids that serve as a delivery vehicle for the nicotine, flavorings, and other compounds to move through the vape device.
In general, propylene glycol offers a stronger hit with more flavor and less vapor. Vegetable glycerine, on the other hand, has a milder hit, with milder flavors but a lot more vapor. Which one you prefer will depend on your personal preference, as well as what type of e-cigarette model you have. Basic e-cig devices cope better with PG, while more powerful e-cigs with sub-ohm mods work better with VG.
Vegetable glycerine derives from plant oils, typically from palm oils. The VG is obtained from plant oils by putting them under tremendous pressure, which causes glycerine to separate from the oils and bond to the water instead. If you've ever felt glycerine, you'll notice that it has a silky texture. But, glycerine feels slightly less oily than the oil from which it's derived.
VG is clear and odorless and tastes sweet. VG can also serve as a sweetener in some food products. It's been used in cosmetics, lotions and even medications for decades, but is now best-known as an ingredient in vape juice. If you're looking for something that makes a lot of vapor, VG is your best choice. It tends not to carry flavors or compounds as well as PG, but if you want to make huge clouds, consider using VG-based juices instead of PG. It also has a much milder throat hit than PG, which makes it an ideal choice for vaping beginners.
Propylene glycol is a synthetic liquid that is odorless and colorless and completely water-soluble. It's derived from the hydration of propylene oxide, which itself derives from petroleum products. It's used in a vast range of different applications. If you've ever been to a stage show, you've most likely seen stage smoke. That stage smoke comes from PG vapor. PG is also frequently used in personal care products due to its water-soluble, non-toxic properties. It is often used in cosmetics as a solvent and emulsifier, and for its antifungal and antibacterial properties. It's also the main component of commercial anti-freeze, where it lowers the freezing point of water.
Since it is used in many applications, much research has been conducted studying the safety relating to PG exposure. The CDC found that while it may irritate the eyes and skin of sensitive people, there are no long-term effects of inhaling PG. Current long-term studies are ongoing to determine the safety of PG in vaping. The FDA currently considers propylene glycol to get "Generally Regarded as Safe," even with prolonged direct exposure.
When used in vape juice, PG can carry a lot more flavor and other compounds than VG. It provides a much stronger throat hit and produces a lot less vapor than VG.
Vaping VG vs. PG
Most vape juices will contain both vegetable glycerin as well as propylene glycol, and the hit and flavor will depend on the ratio of the two. When you first start, it's a good idea to try out different ratios to find out which one you prefer, since they can impact your vaping experience.
PG-based vape juices, designed for lower-powered basic e-cig models, in general, have more nicotine than VG-based liquids. VG-based juices are more popular with cloud chasers since you get a significant amount of vapor from VG.The most common VG/PG ratios found in vape juice are:
- 70/30 PG/VG – made for basic e-cigs, this juice will deliver an intense throat hit with minimal vapor
- 50/50 PG/VG – a common mixture that produces more vapor while still providing a powerful throat hit and the right amount of flavor
- 20/80 PG/VG – this is currently the most popular mix that works well in most vape devices
- 100% VG – made for high powered devices and those who love having billowing clouds trail them.
Nicotine in Vape Juice
While there are vape juices that don't contain nicotine, most of them do. Any nicotine-containing juice will usually give the level of nicotine on the label. In general, these presented as either a percentage or as mg (milligram) of nicotine. If you see something like 0.6% on the label, this means that there is 6 mg (milligrams) of nicotine per 100 ml (milliliters) of juice, which is plenty for most people.
Since vaping is relatively unregulated, many manufacturers get away with mislabeling their nicotine products. A recent study found that most e-liquids have completely different nicotine levels than stated on their labels. Some of this can be due to cost-cutting or lack of proper facilities, but in many cases, it's due to shady business practices aiming to mislead the consumer.
When you're shopping around for a new vape juice, you should try and stick to reputable manufacturers, like Cloudride. We make sure to source our nicotine from reputable manufacturers, and we have the expertise to ensure purity and accuracy. What you see is what you get with our vape juice.
Vape Juice Flavoring
Flavors make up a vital part of your favorite vape juice, and everybody has one that they prefer. Flavorings can be made from either natural or synthetic compounds to give the juice its unique taste. These represent a vast array of chemicals that are added and are probably the riskiest element in vape juice. While the FDA recognizes most of these compounds as safe for eating, few studies have tested how safe these compounds are when inhaled.
While you may think that natural flavors are somehow better than synthetic flavors, this isn't true when it comes to vaping. The chemical compound that produces a specific taste is the same, regardless of whether it's derived from a natural source of made in the lab. When something has a flavor profile that is the result of combining different compounds, you may find that synthetic and natural flavorings differ a bit. They may differ because the flavors are not reproduced accurately. This can lead to a reduction in the nuance of flavors that come from natural sources, but it can also mean that a 'bad' flavor can be removed, making the synthetic product taste better.
When you shop around for a vape juice, you should try and find a manufacturer that vets its sources. Flavoring is as much an art as a science. There are many low-budget labs out there that will crank out low-quality flavors that haven't been vetted by the FDA. It is better to stick to higher-quality vape juices, where the source of all ingredients are known.