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After 25 years of smoking, the last two of those years smoking 2-1/2 packs a day, on March 14th, 2011, I finally made a life-changing decision and started on my vaping journey. It is my hope that with this blog I will be able to reach out to smokers who so badly want to quit, have tried numerous times and numerous ways to do so, but have always failed. Could vaping ("smoking" an electronic cigarette) be the answer to your prayers as it was mine? Let's find out, shall we?
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Thursday, April 12, 2012

What IS Vaping, and Can it REALLY Help Me Quit Smoking?




What exactly is vaping?

To keep it to the most simple of terms, vaping is inhaling a vapor formed by heating e-liquid (commonly called "juice") in an atomizer which is powered by a battery, better known as an e-cigarette.  The e-liquid, or juice, is comprised of only a few different ingredients, which, in limited studies, have been shown to be extremely safe to inhale.  Common ingredients are:

Propylene Glycol is an organic compound most frequently found in moisturizer, medicines, cosmetics, food, toothpaste, shampoo, mouth wash and hair products.  It is also used in smoke machines to create fog.

Vegetable Glycerin is a colorless, odorless, slightly sweet, viscous fluid.  It is often found in pharmaceutical and cosmetic products, cough syrups and expectorants.

These first two ingredients, either individually or together, essentially produce water vapor upon heating.  They also serve as the main component in e-liquid to deliver both flavor, from food grade flavor extracts and liquid nicotine.

Flavoring added to the propylene glycol and vegetable glycerin is FDA grade and often even organic and Kosher, depending on the juice vendor and what they prefer to offer.  These extracts are usually very concentrated, so very little is needed to produce the flavor in the juice.
  • Some vendors even have FDA approved food grade "kitchens" to produce their products, something that I believe will be more mainstream, if not required, in the near future.
Liquid Nicotine is derived from the extraction of nicotine from a tobacco plant, which is then diluted to safe ratios with the addition of either PG (propylene glycol) or VG (vegetable glycerine).

E-liquid, or juice, is comprised of just these four elements, and sometimes even less.  Many vendors offer a solution of just PG, or just VG, and there are some vapers who no longer require nicotine added to their juice at all.

What does an e-cigarette look like?

Most people who make the decision to try vaping to help them quit smoking insist on having a PV (personal vaporizer, or e-cigarette) that resembles a cigarette, at least in size and shape.

 You can find them in a multitude of colors as well.

That requirement, however, doesn't usually last very long.  If you want a warmer, stronger vaping experience, and you want a longer battery life, you'll probably want to try out a mod before long.  

What exactly is a mod?

A mod is basically any e-cigarette that's modified from this original stick style.  Why have mods?  Some want them for the unusual looks they can have, but for most a mod is a great option because it usually offers a much stronger battery, producing higher voltages for a warmer vape, and longer battery life.

Here is a picture of an Ego by Joye, one of the smaller mods.  This one runs at about 3.3 to 3.4 volts, but we won't get into volts just yet.

Essentially, all of these devices are nothing but batteries, or tubes or boxes that hold batteries and feed power into an atomizer or cartomizer.  I'll explain the difference in these at another time, but simply put, they both hold the e liquid and then heat it through a coil which turns the juice into vapor.

In my case, I jumped quickly from an Ego type device into a 3.7 volt box mod like this one.

From there, it's a never-ending list of choices for what kind of mod you can have.  They can be made out of so many different things, from beautiful cuts of wood, to just completely bizarre stuff.



What Does E-Liquid Taste Like and Where Can I Get It?

E-Liquid comes in literally thousands of flavors and can be found on hundreds of vaping websites.  From tobacco flavored juice to blue cheese and everything in between, it's all out there for you to try.  Here are a few of my favorite vendors to buy juice from:

Bombay Vaping
Hella Vapor
Vape Dudes
Pink Spot Vapors

Not only will you find delicious, high quality juices with these vendors, but outstanding customer service as well.

Some fantastic places to look at PVs (personal vaporizers) and accessories:

Cherry Vape
Mad Vapes
Vapor Heads
Clouds of Vapor
Totally Wicked

There are so many more that I love but too many to list!

So.  Can Vaping REALLY Help Me Quit Smoking?

Only one word needed here.  YES!

I can tell you that for 25 years I smoked, and the last few years I smoked more than two packs a day.  Part of me wanted to quit but most of me didn't, and even if I'd had a huge desire to quit, I never thought I would be able to do it.

Vaping was somewhat of a miracle for me really.  It did take me a couple of months to completely stop smoking cigarettes, much of that due to the emotional "attachment" I had to them, not the need for nicotine, since I was getting that from vaping.  If I had done some research on vaping before I bought my first, cheaply made e-cig, I probably would have begun my vaping journey much better equipped, both with knowledge, devices, and confidence that this method of quitting actually works!

This is primarily why I've decided to start this blog.  I hope that smokers wanting to quit will come across it and realize that there is a viable alternative to smoking cigarettes, and that there's a person sitting here with enough knowledge to help them get started. 

In the past year or so I've met hundreds of incredible people through vaping groups on Facebook, many of which I consider true friends.  Vapers from around the world have found ways to unite through social media, vape meets and You Tube channels, to socialize, educate and spread e-cig awareness.

If I can reach just one or two smokers out there and turn them to vaping, I'll be a happy woman.

To view my You Tube videos, go here.

For much more information from one of the pioneers in vaping review videos, check out Grimm Green, a great guy and veteran vaper with tons of knowledge.

Thanks for stopping by, and until next time, remember that it's as simple as two little words.  Just Vape!