Vape Flavor Bans
The pressure being exerted by state flavor bans and an impending federal e-cig crackdown has prompted Juul to extinguish five of their most popular flavors. Whether the elimination of these flavors will successfully address the teen vaping epidemic remains to be seen, although Juul Mint was the most popular flavor with minors and Juul Mango by far the second most popular option.
A national flavor ban will literally hand the cigarette alternative market to Big Tobacco by stripping the flavors that adults prefer from the market. A study conducted by Dr. Farsalino surveyed 69,000 adult vapers and the vast majority preferred flavored ejuices.
We have been saying that teen vaping posed an existential threat to the vaping industry for well over a year. If you are an adult concerned that a child in your care is vaping, our Guide to Spotting Teen Vaping has tons of useful information.
Unfortunately, the devices preferred by youth are nearly silent, odorless and vaporless. It would be much easier to detect underage use if they were using the fanciful high VG, low-nicotine flavors that are on the verge of being banned. But the fact is that adults are the ones enjoying the most complex flavors and the loud, large, cloud chucking box mod is not the device of choice for kids.
If you are one of the millions of vapers who was left in the lurch by Juul’s decision, we have compiled a definitive collection of reviews that examine the best Juul alternatives:
For more information on the technology behind the Juul device, check out our feature: The Truth and Technology Behind Juul and Nic Salts Revealed.
Best Juul Alternatives
With Juul’s lineup denuded of their most popular flavors, the playing field has been left wide-open for the heat-not-burn, FDA approved iQOS system. But barring a catastrophic flavor ban, there are still a number of outstanding Juul alternatives on the market. We examined the far more cost effective and technologically advanced refillable vape pod market in our feature, The Top Ten Juul Alternatives. There are also at least three viable prefilled vape pod kits on the market.
The gas station counter space battle of Juul versus Vuse Alto, has grown more heated as Juul ditched many of their flavors. The primary liability of the Alto had been its smaller lineup of flavors but Juul’s advantage has been negated. Juul also goes head to head with a manufacturer that offers both regular and nic salt vape pod options in an evenly contested match-up: Juul versus MyBlu.
Prefilled vape pods may seem to be the most logical Juul alternative and Refillable vape pod kits the least expensive way to enjoy nic salts and mouth to lung vaping, but the spiritual heir of the Juul device can be found in the form of disposable vapes.
If you would like to check out the world of disposable vapes, our definitive guide to the Best Disposable Vapes is a great starting point.
Juul versus Disposable E-Cigs
Disposable vapes are a perfect conduit for nic salts. They are discrete, satisfying and convenient. You do not need to worry about filling them, priming a coil or keeping them charged. They use autodraw technology and fill the exact same niche that Juul does but are even more convenient. Juul’s flavor lineup has been whittled down to just a few tobacco flavors. Disposables are still available in a wide range of flavors, from Lychee Ice to Cubano Tobacco.
You do not need to worry about a charging or filling a disposable. They are one time use and thanks to some amazing nic salt flavors, provide an amazingly satisfying experience.
The best disposables deliver crystal clear flavor, a tight draw and are extremely discrete. Much like a Juul, they produce little vapor or odor. They generally pack an impressive nic punch.
Despite being a one-time use item, the Zaero disposable offers more flexibility than a Juul as well. This line of disposables is available in four nicotine strengths: 0, 1.8, 3 and 5 percent. Our complete review of the Zaero Disposable is available here. The Zaero contains 1.8ml of vape juice but a Juul pod only contains 0.7ml. This gives it a big price advantage over the popular pod system.
Plus Pods vs Ziip Pods vs Juul
Today we are looking at a couple of newcomers. Plus Pods and Ziip Pods both have a long track record of producing excellent nic salt vape juices. Their new disposables, the Plus Pods Disposable and Z-Pod deserve immediate consideration in the crowded field of disposable vapes.
Here is the tale of the tape. The two disposables each have ten fruit flavors and are about the same size. Both rely on 6 percent strength nic salt ejuices, but the Z-Pod has a bit more capacity. The Plus Pod is more compact and square, nearly identical to a Juul. The Z-Pod has rounded edges and a more formed mouthpiece.
The draw of the ZPod is slightly more open, just slightly, so it really boils down to flavor preference.
Ziip Vapes Z-Pod
Designed by the maker of Ziip Pods and relying on many familiar flavors, the Z-Pod is a great Juul alternative. It is a classic stick disposable design but relies on a more rounded form factor. The previous generation Ziip Pod disposable, the Z-Pen, was more akin to a Mojo Disposable Vape or the tiny Stig.
But the Z-Pod's elongated and rounded edges make a substantial difference in the vaping experience. The Z-Pod is thinner and wider than other stick style disposables. The rounded mouthpiece is nearly perfectly tapered. The plastic mouthpiece has more width than other disposables, keeping your lips clear of the alloy frame.
The overall size is comparable to a Juul but their lineup of ten amazing fruit flavors gives the Ziip disposable vape a huge edge.
The Z-Pod contains 1.4ml of nic salt ejuice. This is just shy of twice the capacity of a Juul pod. The nic strength also matches Juul, with a 5 percent potency. There is no lower nicotine option at this time. The Z-Pod is equivalent to at least a pack of cigarettes and rated for 400 puffs. Ziip is probably being a bit optimistic with this number. Puffs depend largely on how deep of inhales you take. And it would take some pretty shallow puffs to pull a full 400 drags out of this disposable.
Z-Pod Watermelon Lemonade
Z-Pod Watermelon Lemonade is a great beverage vape. Blending the sweet and tart flavors of sugary lemonade with the airy, unmistakable flavor of watermelon. There is no shortage of flavor here. Ziip has done great job and the flavor has a distinctly cool feel.
Blue Raspberry was once the flavor of icy summer treats but is now a staple of disposable vapes and nic salts. ZPods Blue Raspberry has a unique sweet flavor that sparkles in a constellation of complex berry notes. The exhale is not quite iced but exceedingly smooth.
Honey Dew Melon is an unwelcome interloper in fruit salads but it makes a great nic salt vape juice. To compete with the best melon nic salts, Ziip has developed a green ripeness, balanced sweetness and an unmistakable melon flavor in their Z-Pod disposable. On exhale, there is a blast of chilly menthol that makes this an outstanding and cohesive flavor.
Passion Fruit, orange and guava work as power trio in both tropical fruit beverages and nic salt disposables. The competing flavors are complementary. The tart citrus notes never become overwhelming and the syrupy guava is not cloying. The flavor is thick and intricate. Distinct passion fruit notes permeate the inhale and exhale.
This is a great Juul Fruit Medley alternative and easily matches the flavor quality of the discontinued, and not well-liked, Juul Pod. Mixed berries work perfectly as a nic salt because of the natural fruit flavors are complimentary. ZPods Berry Mix mimics the fresh picked flavors, with tart raspberry, sweet strawberry and a deep blueberry flavor tones.
Ziip devised this flavor to go head-to-head with Juul Mango. Mango ZPods use an upgraded nic salt formula which is bursting flavor. Z-Pods Mango delivers pure, unadulterated mango goodness without tasting too much like a mango hard candy. The flavor profile is perfectly balanced with just the right level of tart and sweet.
Why doesn’t every disposable come with a Lychee Ice option? Lychee is lychee, and is difficult flavor to describe. It is tart with a rich warmth. The exhale has an almost grape or wine feel, but with a bit more citrus zing. This is a tremendous flavor.
If you are looking for a Juul Mint alternative, Ziip Pods has done a great job with this Fresh Mint. And the Z-Pod disposable is the perfect device for such a cool flavor. It is slightly herbal and sweet. But the exhale is icy. Spearmint hard candy notes do not detract from the crisp, clean vaping experience.
Ziip Pods has formulated a nic salt that combines two of the most popular fruits in the world. Pineapple can at times get too cloying, but the creaminess of the banana serves as a counterbalance. Z-Pods Pineapple Banana is pure tropical bliss.
Z-Pods Double Apple combines sweet red apple with the unmistakable tang of a sour green apple. Juicy and ripe, this is great fruit vape that can be enjoyed all day long.
Plus Pods Disposables
Compared to the larger Z-Pod from Ziip, the Plus Pods Disposable is a smaller device and more of a classic stick disposable. With a squared off mouthpiece, it closely resembles a Juul. Like the Z-Pod, it relies on a 6 percent strength nic salt although it has a slightly smaller 1.2ml vape juice capacity. This is still nearly twice as large as a 0.7ml Juul Pod.
Plus Pods Disposables are equivalent to a pack of cigarettes, at the very least, and you should be able to extract well over 200 puffs before your disposable gives up the ghost. The tight draw and discrete shape make this a great option for former smokers. The fruit flavors and smooth nic salt formula lend themselves to a satisfying vaping experience.
Plus Pods Disposable Flavors
Iced Peach Plus Pods will impress even the most seasoned vaper with the authenticity of the peach flavor. It never overwhelms or seems too synthetic. Instead, it retains a richness and juiciness that are easy to enjoy. The experience is heightened by the coolness of the menthol ice exhale.
Almost nobody enjoys honeydew melon in their fruit salad but you will find that most vapers love a good melon vape. And Plus Pods Melon certainly fits the bill. The green and ripe flavors challenge the sugary sweetness that drips from each inhale.
Pineapple flavors get a little too sweet but Plus Pods avoided this trap by laying off the sugar and accentuating the flavors in the natural fruit. Still, this is a nic salt that delivers an almost candied level of refreshment and fans of fruit vapes will find Pineapple Plus Pods Disposable a perfect fit.
If you are looking for a flavor that is ideal for disposables and nic salts, Lemonade is low-hanging fruit. It is a familiar taste that most people enjoy. It also strikes a fine balance between tart, citrus and sugar. This keeps the taste buds from tiring. Plus Pods Lemonade does a great job duplicating the flavor of this beloved summer beverage.
The sweet and juicy flavor delivered by the compact Orange Burst Plus Pods Disposable is one of the best citrus vapes around. The orange flavors are spot-on and fantastic. The citrusy bite is never too challenging but breaks up the sugary sweetness.
Blueberry is a perfect nic salt option, as it is one of the more complex and vibrant flavors in vaping. The distinct flavor elements and signature blueberry kick make for an enjoyable all day vape. Plus Pods Blueberry has focus on real tasting fruit flavors and it pays off in this solid ejuice.
A mix of mint and watermelon, Lush Ice, is fast one of the most popular nic salt flavors. It has emerged as the iced-fruit gold standard and the Plus Pods Disposable is a perfect way to enjoy this smooth Lush Ice nic salt. The flavor is crystal clear and Plus Pods Disposable has a satisfying draw that really brings out the most in this flavor. Lush Ice Plus Pods is worthy of consideration in this crowded field.
A mango nic salt in a disposable vape is a winning formula. Plus Pods Mango easily competes with other mango standouts and is a classic all-day vape. Mango has such a distinct flavor and works its magic from inhale through exhale. But it is never overpowering, as the exhale is mild and cool.
Concord grape is a popular flavor in candies, gums and other treats. It is quite sweet but has a unique aftertaste that is easily picked out in a crowd. Plus Pods Grape takes this deep and complex flavor and makes it shine in their disposable. Grape Plus Pods disposables are a great option for fans of fruit vapes who are looking for a flavor with a bit more kick and depth.
When people complain that artificial banana flavor does not taste like a real banana, what they fail to understand is that the classic artificial banana flavor was first developed in the 1950s and is actually based on the superior Gros Michel cultivar.
The bananas we have been eating since the 1960s have less flavor than the original Gros Michel. Banana extinctions are a real issue but hopefully banana vapes will not go the way of the Gros Michel.
With that in mind, Banana Plus Pods relies on Gros Michel flavor tones rather than the creamy and bland banana of the current day. This means the Plus Pods Banana has a nice tart mouth feel and a sweet finish. The balance is outstanding and it does not stray too far into the realm populated by Banana Runts and cloying candies.