What is a CBD vape juice or e-liquid? How is it made? How did the history of e-liquid start?
E-liquid or vape juice is composed of several different ingredients, namely VG or vegetable glycerine, PG or propylene glycol, nicotine and flavourings.
E liquids usually feature VG and PG alike, with one of these two usually more dominant compared to the other.
We use a 60/40 mix on this site, after many trial and error as we think this has a sweet spot for flavour and vapour production, check out our e liquids here.
There are also e liquids that don’t have any nicotine content and these contain the exact same ingredients ( VG/pg and flavouring typically) , without the nicotine.
What is E-Liquid or Vape Juice Made Of?
This is probably the number question that most people are confused with?
From big fans of tobacco saying that they don’t know what a vape juice is made of to well-meaning vaper claiming that it is only water vapor, there are weird beliefs and misinformation about e liquids that you will hear everywhere.
The good news is that there is really no mystery on how e-liquid is made and what goes into it.
The truth is that all ingredients are indicated on the label. This is the EU law, although reliable juice makers have already been doing this for many years.
This means that it is straightforward to learn what is inside your e-liquid but is what is typically written on the average e-liquid label informative?
Many of the names you will see on the labels are chemical names that may look and sound intimidating. They don’t even say much as to what the substances really are. It makes it too easy for others to come up with scary stories.
Many e liquids contain four primary ingredients. There is a bit of variation, although not that much.
When you are familiar with the basics, it will be easy for you to spot the differences.
How is Vape Juice or E-Liquid Made? continued
For now, here is a quick overview of the ingredients found in your vape juice.
- Vegetable Glycerin
E liquids made for modern atomizers are mainly VG or vegetable glycerine. It can take up as much as 80% per volume. This is the reason why e-cigs have evolved from producing a small amount of vapour to forming large white plumes.
Glycerin is a type of natural substance that could be processed from many forms of fat.
The glycerin used in e liquids is extracted from vegetable oils, and this is why this is called vegetable glycerin.
However, it doesn’t make much of a difference. An important point to remember is that even if this is processed from oils, this is not really a type of oil.
Instead, it is more of alcohol that makes inhaling it safe.
Vegetable glycerin is a form of non-toxic substance with a sweet taste but no smell.
It is very viscous and thick, which means that liquids with high vegetable glycerin content can work well in small clearomizers and older atomizers.
It is also too thick to wick properly. There are e liquids that solve this with the use of aqueous glycerine, which is merely vegetable glycerin added with some water.
Many of the common products today contain vegetable glycerin.
This is being used as a sweetener in the food industry and also gets added to certain foods to help them stay moist.
A lot of medicines also contain VG. Scientists have studied VG for years, and no health issues have been linked to it.
Vape juices with lots of VH products don’t have strong throat hit but have plenty of dense vapour.
- Propylene glycol
Majority of what isn’t vegetable glycerin in e-liquid is probably PG or propylene glycol. Some vape juices even have more amounts of PG than VG. Since these are less viscous, these tend to work better in older atomizers and clearomizers.
Just like VG, PG is also an alcohol, and it is almost odourless. Its taste is faintly sweet but not enough to use it as a sweetener.
However, it can be added to medicines, foods, as well as other products to help them keep their moisture.
PG is also commonly used in antifreeze, and this is for this reason that there are people who claim that e liquids contain antifreeze.
But, this isn’t true at all.
PG is merely a single ingredient in antifreeze, and this is there because it is non-toxic.
Antifreeze based on PG is less dangerous to pets and children. It is also worthy to point out that water is an antifreeze ingredient as well.
Just because an ingredient is used in a product known to be poisonous doesn’t mean that the substance itself is also harmful.
However, there are indeed several minor health problems associated with PG, has been studied since the 1940s and classified as safe in general.
It won’t cause you any harm to swallow or inhale it. There are a few people sensitive to the substance, so if you feel unwell while using a vape juice with high amounts of PG, you need to switch to one that contains more VG instead.
Propylene glycol produces less visible vapor compared to VG so this is not really very in demand among cloud chasers.
However, people who prefer to vape discreetly like PG. It also gives better throat hit and flavours.
Many vape juices contain nicotine. It is the reason why vaping is an effective alternative for smoking.
You will be able to satisfy your cravings for nicotine with no need to light up tobacco leaves.
You can also expect a good throat hit from nicotine, so if it happens to be your preference; it is best to opt for liquids with higher nicotine content.
Despite all the bad publicity it gets, nicotine is a rather safe drug. The danger lies in the smoke coming from the cigarettes and not from nicotine.
High doses can be toxic, but you won’t poison yourself through vaping. Even before you reach the harmful level, you will start to feel a bit nauseous, and you will also experience a headache.
Smokers and vapers alike are really good at getting the right of nicotine they need without going beyond that.
One thing people love about vaping is the extensive selection of juices with delicious tastes, and this is all because of the flavourings used.
E liquid on its own doesn’t really have much taste, so it is flavoured using food-grade colour additives.
Most of the health issues about vaping are mostly because of the flavourings.
There are several ingredients that can be eaten safely but are not safe to inhale, such as diacetyl.
But, the industry was able to eliminate the additives that cause these worries.
You should never use the food flavourings available in the supermarkets as some of these contain oils that can be dangerous when inhaled.
You should only stick to the flavours made by vape makers since these have been chosen for maximum safety for inhalation.
It is often best to stay away from e liquids containing anything else aside from these four main ingredients.
Supplements such as caffeine, colouring, and vitamins never do anything to improve the quality of vape juice and not like flavourings; these weren’t chosen for inhalation safety.
By sticking to these four listed ingredients, you can expect to have a more enjoyable vaping experience with lower risk.
How are E Liquids or Vape Juices Made?
The production of e-liquid or vape juice is a lengthy procedure, and similar to other types of recipes, the ingredients for e liquids must be measured with care before they are mixed together.
It is especially the case for nicotine because it must be measured properly to make sure that you will obtain the right nicotine percentage.
First, the flavourings get added to the base of VG and PG before they are mixed.
It often requires just a tiny amount of flavourings so that the e-liquid will get the punch it really needs. The nicotine will then be added to this mixture, and it will be shaken to guarantee that all the ingredients are properly blended together.
The e-liquid will then be left for several days to allow the flavour to be richer and more intense.
The process is often informally known as steeping, and this works in the same way when ageing a cut of meat or airing a bottle of wine before you drink it.
While it might sound simple and easy on paper, in reality, the process is a bit more complex.
For this reason, it is not recommended that you try doing it on your own. It is best to just stick to vaping and let the experts handle the making of e liquids.
Are E Liquids Dangerous?
E liquids or vape juices are dangerous when swallowed or when they come in contact with your skin.
These may also cause long-lasting dangerous effects on aquatic life. Users must always wash their hands properly after they handle e liquids and avoid releasing these to the environment. If any vape juice comes into contact with skin, wash it off right away.
If you suffer from adverse reactions or you feel unwell, you should contact a poison centre or doctor immediately.
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