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The Basics

A guide to the basics of vaping

This section is for those of you that are new to vaping and want to learn the basics. We'll help you find the information you are looking for whilst making everything easy to understand and follow.

Silhouette of a vaper

What is vaping?

Vaping is the use of an electronic cigarette or similar device to produce clouds of vapour that is inhaled. Many people use vaping as a form of smoking cessation in place of traditional nicotine replacement therapy however there is now a large percentage of people vaping with no nicotine at all.

Vaping is sometimes confused with smoking because of the clouds bring exhaled by people but the big difference is that it is vapour and not smoke. This is a very important point as vapour and smoke are completely different things.

What is the difference between vapour and smoke?

Smoke is produced by burning material with fire. This causes a lot of problems when smoking a cigarette as burning tobacco doesn't simply produce pure tobacco smoke. Burning any material produces by-products that are wildly different from what was originally burned. This means that things that are considered safe can be very harmful when burned as many noxious and dangerous gases can be produced by burning.

Vapour on the other hand is created by heating up a material until it turns into gas (vapour), this process is the same as boiling water in a kettle to produce steam.There is no burning involved in this process at all, this means the only thing contained in the vapour is what you started with. This process gets rid of any unwanted by-products of burning whilst still producing a satisfying vapour that can be inhaled and why it is considered very safe compared to smoking.

Cigarette Smoke

What is in vapour?

Vapour that is being inhaled consists of five main components.

  • Propylene Glycol
  • Vegetable Glycerine
  • Distilled Water
  • Nicotine
  • Flavouring

When compared to smoking that contains more than 4,000 chemicals, it is clear to see why many people are using the devices instead of smoking cigarettes. You can find more information regarding the components in our e-juice guide.

How does the vapour get produced?

All devices that you see on the market consist of two main parts; the battery and the atomizer.

  • The Battery
    • is charged separately.
    • gives the atomizer the power it needs.
  • The Atomizer
    • holds e-juice.
    • produces vapour.

The atomizer usually holds some e-juice which is poured in the top or bottom and closed. The atomizer has within it some wick which is usually silica or cotton and a coil. The coil is the part of the atomizer that does the work, essentially it is similar to an element in a kettle.

The wick is in there to press juice against the coil which is hot. When the power is turned on the coil heats the juice to the point it boils and turns into vapour. This vapour is then inhaled and exhaled by the user.

Types of devices

There are so many different types of vaping devices out there it can be a bit confusing.

We are here to help break down what devices are on the market, the difference between each and explain the advantages/disadvantages of each.


Collection of cigalikes

In the early days of the vaping industry, cig-a-like devices were commonly used as this was your only option. They are instantly recognisable as they are made to resemble a real cigarette; often the size of one and coloured like the real thing.


Pen style devices

Most vapers nowadays are using a device like this. The technology in these devices has gradually got so much better that there are now quite a lot of versions of these devices on the market. We explain the advantages of these products here.

Further information on pen style devices

Other Devices

This category covers all the other devices used for vaping. These devices are usually for the more advanced vaper although there are now versions coming on to the market designed for the beginner.