Selecting you first vape, What should you be considering?By Alan Powell AKA Nomad Vaper
First steps: Ok you’ve made a decision before you even get to this point ‘I want to stop smoking’, now you have to decide how and there are a multitude of stop smoking options out there from the traditional Nicotine Replacement Therapy’s (NRT’s) such as patches or gum’s. You have tried these before and they were not for you, so you want to try a vape more commonly referred to in the UK as an Ecig.
The next choice you must make now is how you are going to get one and in general there are 3 options:
Online, convenience store/ supermarket and brick and mortar vape shops, but which is the best option?
The answer to that is subjective so here is a rundown on the pros and cons of each.
Pros: buying online you know you can find any type of vape your looking for easily with a quick google search and you know the price will be cheaper than buying from a brick and mortar store.
Cons: there is no one to teach you how to use your new kit or explain the differences in types of kit to choose from learning about this will be entirely down to you. Another con is that you will have to wait to receive your purchase depending on what kit you buy and the website you purchased it from you could be waiting 2 days or you could be waiting a month to receive your new kit.
Convenience store/ Supermarket
Pros: There is not much in the way of pros in this option other than its cheaper than a vape shop but there is a reason for that.
Cons: there are a few of these that you will notice within a short time of using your new kit or even immediately if you have sharp eyes, There’s a lack of choice in the kits available to you, they are likely to only be pod kits that require you to replace the whole pod whenever its empty or fully disposable kits that you bin once used up the devices are usually cheaply made and not of the best quality manufactured to bring in profit rather than give someone a long lasting durable device and then there’s your liquid choice which will be very limited with only a couple of flavor options available and usually only with high nicotine content which may not be the best choice for you these liquids again are generally cheaply made and not best quality using these liquids is generally fine in a pinch but they tend to be damaging to coils causing them to gunk up and fail sooner than they normally would with better quality liquids. The final con and this is one that truly annoys me is that the staff behind the counter have very little if any knowledge about vaping and are unable to help you or guide you when it comes to learning how to use your device choosing the right liquid or even answer general questions that all new vapers should be able to get answers too.
Brick and mortar Vape shops:
Pros: walking into a brick and mortar vape shop can feel daunting when you see all the different devices and liquids on display but most staff in these shops are generally well versed in all aspects of vaping and will give a warm friendly greeting, they will be more than able to talk to you about vaping and allay any concerns you may have. Just having a short conversation with you will give them a good idea of which kits and liquids would be right for you and even help show you how to set up your new kit change your coils and fill them so they’re ready to use before you leave the shop, all with a smile on their face.
Cons: the downside of using a brick and mortar is mainly the prices are a little higher than online retailers due to the need to pay staff, rent and bills to keep the shop open but this higher cost is more than offset by the pros above. The second is your options in most cases are limited to what is available in the shop, due to the sheer number of kits available it is impossible for a brick and mortar store to stock them all rather they generally stock the kits that are most popular in their area with one or two additional options to give a varied selection of kits to choose from.
Once you’ve made your decision on where to purchase your new vape kit from its time to decide which one you want and there are a number of factors to take into account when choosing which kit you want.
How do you want to vape? This is a question most new vapers do not even consider; vaping is a huge industry with a multitude of different ways to vape. There are two distinct types that it can be broken down too to make the answer to this question easier those are Mouth to lung which is closest to simulating the inhale of a cigarette and Direct lung which is a different kind of inhale mainly direct lung vaping is used by those people who have been mouth to lung vaping for a while and have reduced their nicotine levels down.
In general a new vaper should go for a mouth to lung device when first starting out.
Which type of kit should I choose? Now you know that you want to vape with the mouth to lung kit there is again 3 main choices about which type of kit to choose these are all considered starter kits: pen style, box or pod.
To make that choice there are a few things you need to consider.
Pen style: these usually appear tall and cylindrical in shape with an internal battery and have a single button on the side for powering on and vaporizing your e-liquid and a charge port to charge the battery, and normally have either a tank on top or one that is directly integrated into the battery also known as an AIO or all in one kit both types having a replaceable coil that are cheap and easy to replace when it fails.
Box style: there are a couple of variations on the box style the starter style is usually designed similar to the pen style above but with a larger in built battery hence the more box like shape, there are also intermediate box style kits that have either internal or replaceable battery options and come with a screen and buttons to adjust power settings to tailor your vape more to your own preferences.
Pod style: pod style are usually more compact than the other styles to make them more discreet they generally have smaller battery capacity and have proprietary pods that sit in the top of the battery instead of a tank and these pods are either replaceable coil pods which can be refiled, disposable open pods that can be refilled but replaced when the coil fails or fully closed pods which are non-refillable and must be replaced when the liquid runs out.
When choosing which style to go for remember to consider:
Do I need a bigger battery to get me through the day?
Would I prefer to have one that looks like a cigarette to make the transition easier?
How simple do I want it to be?
Do I need it to be small and easy to carry?
Deciding which of these to go for is something only you can do by considering all the questions and your answers, some people will have a pod for when they are in the car and a pen or box style for when they are at home or work.
Finally: The final step now you have chosen your kit is to choose your e-liquid there are thousands of flavors and types of liquid to choose from most new vapers will need what’s called a 50/50 liquid these are liquids designed for mouth to lung devices and help to give a good throat hit in order to simulate the inhale of a cigarette, choice of flavor is subjective and can take trying multiple flavors in order to find the one for you. Nicotine content however is something you need to think about carefully because based on how much you smoke you may need a higher or lower nicotine level, the general rule of thumb I use is how many ciggs a person smokes on their worst day and how many on a normal day.
Up to 5 a day: 3-6mg nicotine
5-10 a day: 6-12mg nicotine
10-15 a day: 12-16mg nicotine
15-20 a day: 16-18mg nicotine
Over 20 a day: 20mg nicotine
I generally recommend starting with the lower nicotine level in the bracket you smoke and if you find your using it more than you thought you would or you don’t get a strong enough throat hit then next time you can try the next nicotine level up or conversely if you find it’s a bit too harsh you can go down to the nicotine level below it’s all a little trial and error but once you find your spot you will have an excellent vape experience.