An Overview of E-Liquid
An electronic cigarette is a new electronic device that essentially simulates the act of smoking tobacco. It basically consists of a unit such as a rechargeable battery, an atomizer, and a tank or cartridge like case. Rather than tobacco, the consumer inhales nicotine vapor instead. As such, utilizing an e cigarette is frequently described as “taking a hit” rather than smoking.
Nonetheless, it’s important to understand how the cigarettes work so that you can be an informed customer when shopping for the perfect e-liquid to meet your needs. The reason e-liquids are called e-juice is because they contain a specific blend of herbal and propylene glycol (PG) oil. When vaporizing, these two ingredients react with alkaline water to produce vapor which is known as e-liquid. The exact composition of e-liquid varies among devices but most contain a combination of these 3 basic ingredients. Below, you’ll find a closer look at the ingredients of typical e-liquids.
Propylene Glycol – This is the active ingredient in the majority of e-liquids. It’s a humectant, which means it thickens and moisturizes the surface of heated liquids so that they retain their flavor. Propylene Glycol is often listed first, while other ingredients may be lower down on the list. Propylene Glycol is also commonly included in diabetic e-liquids because it helps prevent excessive conversion of carbohydrates to sugar during the mixing process.
Artificial flavors – Certain brands use synthetic ingredients and flavors such as mint or chocolate to mask the taste of real tobacco. Some manufacturers have taken this to the extreme by manufacturing “fake” tobacco flavors using propylene glycol instead of nicotine. You won’t detect the difference between fake tobacco and propylene glycol in liquid because the flavorings used are virtually identical. In fact, you may not even notice the difference when you’re finished.
Food grade propylene glycol is generally mixed with food grade (food preservative) liquid propane to provide an extra degree of safety. This type of e-liquid usually comes in concentrated form and requires a process similar to making vegetable juice. You mix the ingredients, heat them up, and then pour into your juicer. Most electronic cigarettes use this type of e-liquid.
Metabolism – Another thing to consider is whether or not the e-liquids are metabolized through the body before being consumed. Some electronic cigarettes and cigarette products use a pharmaceutical grade (PEG) nicotine that burns relatively quickly. These e-liquids are usually blended with slower burning tobacco or herbal extracts to give users a more satisfying hit without the feeling of constant hit.
Many e-liquids are made with ingredients that mimic drugs in their actions on the human body. Tobacco companies have spent millions of dollars researching what new chemicals are most likely to produce the most desirable results. They have learned that menthol and spearmint oils are stimulants. They also have found that cinnamon activates serotonin production in the brain and that citrus flavorings to produce a calming effect. The newer chemicals, however, are still being studied. They could end up either being banned entirely or tolerated in small quantities.
E-liquids are a very new addition to the world of smoking cessation products. They are particularly interesting due to the fact that many people who quit smoking do so by using e-liquids. This suggests that the public at large is increasingly comfortable with e-liquids and is open to the idea of regular use of these devices. It is also interesting to note that over the past decade, sales of e-cigs have more than tripled when compared to sales of traditional cigarettes. Due to this increase in popularity, the FDA has recently approved several new chemicals for use in e-liquids.