Breaking Down the Components and Busting the Myths Surrounding eLiquids
The debate over eLiquids in vapor cigarettes is heating up — and not because of the cartomizers found in such devices. Indiana’s House committee approved a bill this week that would significantly impact businesses that sell vaping products, especially the e Liquids or liquid nicotine that provide vapor for such devices. The state House will vote on the issue soon and decide whether retailers who sell e-Liquids will need to have a retail tobacco certificate — a $5,000 expense that comes with a $1,000 renewal every five years. According to the Smoke-Free Alternatives Trade Association, there are around 16,000 vape shops in the U.S., up from 10,000 last autumn. Laws like the one proposed in Indiana would significantly impact these small businesses and, potentially, the 4 million e-cig users throughout the U.S.
Much of the fear surrounding eliquid comes from either misinformation or isolated cases of accidental ingestion by small children. In many states throughout the country, these incidents have influenced both e-Liquid manufacturers and lawmakers to push for childproofing on these bottles.
Much of the concern surrounding these liquids is also due to the nicotine contained within them, as this substance can be harmful to children when ingested. But this ignores a basic fact about eLiquid — namely, that it can contain any amount of nicotine, from zero- to low-strength (6 mg of nicotine per ml or less) or medium-to high-strength nicotine (12 mg or above). Additionally, the low-or no-nicotine liquids tend to outsell the medium-and high-strength varieties by as much as two-to-one.
But at the meeting for the House committee in Indiana, there was very little discussion on the health effects of eLiquid. It may even be possible that some lawmakers are unsure what exactly goes into this substance.
On the market today, there are more than 466 brands of eLiquid and at least 7,700 different flavors. These blends are predominantly made from two different substances: either vegetable glycerin or propylene glycol, and sometimes a mixture of both. Each of these carrier liquids has a very different purpose, and many people who are into vaping may develop a preference for one type of eLiquid or another:
- Propylene Glycol, or PG for short, is a colorless, nearly odorless organic compound and is used as everything from a preservative in food to an ingredient in pharmaceuticals. PG is considered popular as an eLiquid ingredient because it delivers a greater “throat hit.” Because the substance has no flavor, it doesn’t tend to alter the taste of an eLiquid.
- Vegetable Glycerin, usually abbreviated to VG, is a substance found in all types of foods and consumer products, such as cosmetics. While it doesn’t have the same throat hit as PG, it does produce a thicker vapor. It also has a sweeter flavor, which can slightly alter the taste of the vaping flavors used in the eLiquid.
- Flavorings and Nicotine can then be added to this blend to create eLiquid
Choosing the ingredients and nicotine strength for eLiquid is up to personal preference. If you’re new to vaping, take the time to find something that will deliver the best vaping experience for you.