Wednesday, October 07, 2015

What You Should Know About Vaping

The trouble with the literature on nicotine, tobacco, vaping, and smoking cessation is that you can't trust any of it, basically. Sponsor bias taints the vast majority of reports, and the whole subject of smoking is so politicized, so rife with agendas, sacred cows, etc., that it's almost impossible to tell up from down.

An Aspire kit with USB charger, replacement igniters,
and everything else you need, is only about $50.
You'll often read, for example, that there are hidden dangers to vaping. Which is nonsense, as far as I can tell. A Japanese report (from 2014) famously said e-cigs can put out ten times more formaldehyde than regular cigarettes, for example; which turns out to be false. (Read about it here and here.) I've been unable to find any credible evidence whatsoever that vaping is harmful. Certainly, it will be a long time before anyone shows it to be anywhere near as harmful as cigarette smoking.

The main ingredient of vape juice is propylene glycol, which is not to be confused with the much more toxic ethylene glycol (although frankly, ethylene glycol's toxicity is not as great as most people imagine; in poisoning cases, children and animals typically drink many ounces of the stuff, because it tastes so sweet). Propylene glycol is used in asthma inhalers, so the idea that it's going to damage your lungs is somewhat fanciful, to put it mildly.

You'll sometimes hear it said that e-cigs are not proven effective in helping people quit smoking. Not true. One recent literature review found that 18% of e-cig users quit smoking, which is a lot. By comparison, the success rate for nicotine gum is about 8% (barely better than cold-turkey cessation, at 5%), versus the patch at around 12%. The literature on Wellbutrin and Chantix is tainted and thoroughly unreliable, IMHO. Read it if you want. Wellbutrin gave me heart palpitations, and Chantix (which has been implicated in hundreds of suicide attempts) made me go psychotic. I can't recommend the drugs.

The bottom line, as I said in an earlier post, is that a vapor pen (or "e-cig," if you must) is not a direct replacement for a cigarette; your body won't be fooled. If you try to use it that way, you'll be disappointed. If you treat the vape pen as its own special beast, you may very well find it satisfying. I do.

My strong advice is to stay away from the "cigalike" products that look like a cigaret. Invest (instead) $50 to $75 in a decent pen with a rechargeable battery and replaceable heating element. I happen to like the Aspire products, replacement parts for which can be obtained online quite inexpensively.

If you decide to invest in a pen, here's what you need to know.

You'll need e-juice. Juices come in thousands of flavors, and several nicotine grades. If you are (or were) a serious smoker, don't waste time on low-dosage juices. Go for the strongest grade of juice, and if it's too strong (which it won't be), work your way down.

If you're a smoker, you'll probably want to choose an e-juice with lots of "brown notes." Sample a few flavors: tobacco, butterscotch, caramel, etc. (Most vape shops are happy to let you sample as many flavors as you want.) Take home a couple of "dark" flavors and a couple of fruity flavors. You'll know in a day or two which ones you like.

Expect to pay no more than $10 per 15-ml vial. If you're paying more than that, shop around. In L.A., I can buy vape juice on any street corner, often for as little as $5 or $6. One 15-ml vial lasts me a week.

The sweet, caramelly flavors (and some of the menthols, too) tend to gum up, carbonize, and burn out wicks (coils, igniters) quickly, so be sure to ask your juice dealer what the best flavors are for long igniter life. They'll know.

Feel free to mix flavors. I was a menthol smoker, so I often mix menthol e-juice with another flavor. If it turns out you like one of the "heavy" flavors that burns out coils fast, cut it back with a plain-vanilla flavor of some kind. Mix it up. Mix peach and menthol. Add cherry to Rad Bull (a Red Bull taste-alike). Add chocolate-chip cookie-dough flavor (yes, you can buy it) to butterscotch. Find the flavor and nicotine combo that works for you.

Most heating elements (coils, igniters) have some cotton in them; some have a fiber wick. (I don't like wicks. I use the Aspire BVC-style coil, which lasts longer.) After installing a new igniter (which you'll do about once every 5 to 10 days, or whenever the vapor starts to taste skunky), let the juice soak in for a minute or two before drawing your first puff. Otherwise you could burn out the (dry) igniter prematurely. Makes sense, right?

You can get a USB battery charger very inexpensively (under $10), so by all means get a charger and get two batteries, and keep one battery charging on your computer while you use the other one. Nowadays, you can buy a fancy 1600-milliampere-hour battery for $35 that'll last two days or more between charges, but I still prefer to have a pair of less-expensive 900-mah batteries (that last about six hours, each, for me) and switch off between them. That way I can misplace one, use the other, puff until I find the first one, then lose the second one. Repeat until insane.

Vape shops charge a hefty markup on everything, which is why they're oh-so-happy to see you when you walk through the door. My advice? Get used to buying replacement parts online. You'll save 70% or more.

Vape juice feels greasy, but actually contains no oils (it's just glycerine and glycol), which means it'll wash out of fabrics. If your pen ever gets sticky, it'll clean right up with a wet paper towel.

I budget $6 a week for e-juice, $1.50 a week for igniters (a 5-pack costs $8 online), and $25 every two months for a new battery. My former habit (Marlboro Menthols and the occasional clove) used to set me back $7 to $10 a day (and made my clothes stink, my teeth yellow, etc.), so you do the math.

Anti-vapers can say what they want about vaping. To me, there's no question that vape pens are better for you than cigarettes, and the whole argument about whether vaping is a "proven effective" way to quit smoking is a bit moot, because consumers have voted with their wallets (and purses), and the verdict is in: Vaping is here to stay, in a big way.

Also see: To Vape or Not to Vape, and Nicotine Is Not the Enemy.

A big thank-you to all the great people who retweeted me yesterday: 

Buy my books (or click to find out more, at least):

Have you added your name to our mailing list


  1. Do you think vaping is dangerous?doubler

  2. What is the best electronic cigarette that is available in the USA, I have tried one that was imported but the customer service was non-existant when it fell apart on the first use and it took them 3 months to refund me. I hope there are some genuine ones available, because I'm really struggling to find anything that isn't just a huge scam, all the reviews are complaints about poor service etc. I'm documenting my struggle to quit smoking and hope to raise money to benefit local causes as well as improve my health. The so-called best electronic cigarette I tried was more like the worst!
    e cigarettes for sale

  3. I love vaping. Through vaping, I can stay away from the real cigarettes.

  4. Anonymous1:24 PM

    If you could message me with any hints & tips on how you made your blog look this cool, I would be appreciative!
    видове електронни цигари

  5. will it harm you
    is is better than a real cigg
    does it smell?
    digital vaporizer

  6. You got a really useful blog I have been here reading for about half an hour. I am a newbie and your post is valuable for me.
    best fruit e liquid

  7. You are a extremely clever person!
    milk flavored ejuice

  8. It was another joy to see your post. It is such an important topic and ignored by so many, even professionals. I thank you to help making people more aware of possible issues. Great stuff as usual...

  9. There is a lot of info on this blog: very helpful
    weed vaporizer pen

  10. Very interesting topic, can you post some further information on this subject.
    marijuana vapourizer

  11. Anonymous6:30 AM

    I really loved reading your thoughts, obviously you know what are you talking about! Your site is so easy to use too, I’ve bookmark it in my folder :-D

  12. This is really great news. Thank you for sharing it with us!
    smoke shop hollywood

  13. Your Post is very useful, I am truly happy to post my note on this blog . It helped me with ocean of awareness so I really consider you will do much better in the future.

  14. This is a brilliant writing and very pleased to find this site. I couldn’t discover to much different information on your blog. I will surely be back again to look at some other important posts that you have in future.
    bulk e liquid

  15. We provide electronic cigarette or E-Cigarette, e-liquid & e-Juice brand in Delhi, Mumbai, chennai, kolkata and all over India at the best prices buy online.

    VIEW MORE :-

    E-Cigarette in India
    Electronic Cigarettes Online in India
    e-liquid in India
    E juice in India
    Vape in India

  16. You have a very good site, well constructed and very interesting i have bookmarked you, hopefully you keep posting new stuff, many thanks
    vapes for weed

  17. Thanks for the update you have nicely covered this topic. keep it up

  18. I really appreciate your blog about he vape pen and all works are very nice well done.
    where can i buy a vape pen

  19. Great blog all the information are really awesome and great well done.
    vapes for weed

  20. I am undeniably thankful to you for providing us with this invaluable related information. My spouse and I are easily grateful, quite frankly the documents we needed.
    marijuana vapourizer

  21. Good writing...keep posting dear friend
    vapes for weed

  22. Most valuable and fantastic blog I really appreciate your work which you have done about the Best Organic Vape Juice ,many thanks and keep it up.
    Best Organic Vape Juice

  23. Can you overdose on 3mg of nicotine or e liquid?
    e juice

  24. Thanks for the information you shared that's so useful and quite informative and i have taken those into consideration....
    e cig

  25. The marking image is created by achieving vaporization temperature on the surface to remove the top coat and expose the underlying plastic or second coat.
    Perhaps the most critical element in the successful application of laser marking is the composition of the part programs.
    We can see more: vapor store near me

  26. Nice blog all the information are very great well done and keep posting.

  27. Such a nice blog and very nice you work and sharing this wonderful article about the atomizers nice style of working.

  28. This is a brilliant writing and very pleased to find this site. I couldn’t discover to much different information on your blog. I will surely be back again to look at some other important posts that you have in future.
    best vape juice

  29. This is one of the most wonderful blog, this is work is tremendous. Thanks GetMyVape :)

  30. Vaping are not harmful to the human body like traditional cigarettes. It is a myth that E-Cigarettes contains cancer causing chemicals.

    Vaping Store India

    Buy E-liquid For Vaping

  31. Hi Dear,

    i Like Your Blog Very Much..I see Daily Your Blog ,is A Very Useful For me.

    Hairfibril offer wide range or Online Buy Electronic Cigarettes If you are trying to online buy wholesale electronic cigarettes & e cigarette starter kit in UK& USA. Available here @

    Visit Now -

  32. Nice blog it's very helpful information. Thanks for sharing. keep sharing such informative Ideas
    jersey vape store

  33. This comment has been removed by the author.

  34. its a great information that everyone should know about dab Vaping pen

  35. Useful information. I am actual blessed to read this article.thanks for giving us this advantageous information. I acknowledge this post.and I would like bookmark this post. Thanks! disposable vape pen phant

  36. Vape Density in One Of the Best Online Vape Store in California, USA. We Offering e-cig, Vape mods, Vaporizer, Starter kits and eliquid at affordable prices.

  37. Thanks for the nice work I have gone through the article and it is really impressing and stunning work.

    Easy Puff Vapor

  38. Wonderful information!!!
    Vapes are best for those who wants to quit smoking. If you are taking best quality vapes you would never suffer from any side-effects. Top Quality of Vapes in New Jersey are available at Vapes and Tabacco. We have the large collection of e-liquids of different flavours and for the lovers of the Vapes we have different Vapes kits and accessories.

  39. This comment has been removed by the author.


Add a comment. Registration required because trolls.