For people who are thinking of switching from vaping to smoking or those who have recently gotten their very first vape kit, there are often a lot of questions about the substance at the heart of the vaping experience: e-liquid. Let’s explore some of the most common questions people ask about e-liquid and talk a bit about why it’s better for you than tobacco.
What kind of chemicals are in e-liquid?
E-liquid manufacturers start with a base that’s typically made of propylene glycol (also known as PG) and vegetable glycerine (or VG). PG is a preservative and helps control the moisture level in e-liquids. You may sometimes hear PG criticized as being “antifreeze,” but understand that PG isn’t the kind of antifreeze you’d put in your car. Instead, it’s a food-safe antifreeze that’s often used in restaurant walk-in freezers and other places where food is stored.
Meanwhile, odorless and colorless VG is a vegetable-based substance that often comes from soy, coconut, or palm oil. A vaping experience without VG would be a disappointing one, indeed, as VG is what makes those thick, mesmerizing clouds of vapor.
Many e-liquids also have flavor added to them. These flavors are made of substances that are considered to be food-safe.
Is inhaling e-liquid vapor safer than smoking tobacco?
If “safer” means inhaling less toxins and reducing the amount of carcinogens in your body, then absolutely! In fact, Cancer Research UK ran a study to see how smoking stacks up against vaping. They compared four groups of people: smokers of combustible cigarettes, former smokers who switched to vaping, former smokers who switched to nicotine replacement therapy (a nicotine patch or gum, for instance), and people who currently smoke and use nicotine replacement therapy or vape.
The study found that the bodies of people who quit smoking and starting vaping or using nicotine replacement therapy had carcinogen levels that were 97.5% lower than those who continued to smoke. If that’s not a ringing endorsement for e-liquid being safer than tobacco, then I’m not sure what is!
What about secondhand vapor? Is it dangerous?
First of all, one of the most pleasant things about vaping is that it doesn’t leave a fog of heavy smoke and odor. In fact, most people will only notice a subtle aroma of whatever flavor of e-liquid is being vaped. Most of the time, the odor will dissipate almost immediately.
In terms of safety, there is no question that secondhand smoke is dangerous. There are at least 60 different carcinogens in secondhand tobacco smoke. Meanwhile, the vapor expelled when someone uses e-liquid only contains a few of those same chemicals.
Is vaping e-liquid a good way to cut down on or stop smoking?
Absolutely! One of the great things about e-liquid is that there are so many high-quality options out there begin sold by reputable online vape shops. In addition to various flavors, you’ll also be able to find different nicotine levels. This will enable you to get the full nicotine experience you’re used to from cigarettes and step down to less nicotine. If you want to, eventually, you’ll be able to vape with e-liquid that has no nicotine at all.