Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Reflecting on the past 30 days

Six months ago, when I seriously considered to stop smoking for the first time in my life vaping was the last on my list of options. After several unsuccessful attempts to battle the old habit with more conventional methods I finally turned to e-cigarettes. Now I am smoke free for over 30 days. I feel great and absolutely have no desire to go back to analogues. What have I learnt?
Please keep in mind that all below reflects only my personal experience to date.


  1. There are still many unknowns about the adverse impact of vaping. The industry is booming but unfortunately is unregulated. There are no standards, as a result companies are cutting corners to keep prices competitive. I simply don’t know what the product is made of or what the long impact of the materials/chemicals is. Some examples of questionable products. Aspire is using ceramic wrappers in their stock BVC coils. Joyetech is also using ceramic fiber (cilica, fiberglass) wrappers in their LVC stock coils. Are we inhaling tiny ceramic particles? Kangertech stock OOC coils are made from brass with chrome plating. Any risk of inhaling heavy metals? Majority of the batteries do not control the coil temperature, which may lead to overheating and production of toxic carbonyls. E-Liquids/juices may contain Diacetyl. 
  2. e-Cigarettes, as electronic devices,  are still in the stone age. Mostly poorly designed (not elegant, more like a “gang style”) and poorly manufactured. Lack of quality control is common across the industry. Don’t expect to find Rolex or Leica there. Tanks are leaking and batteries are unexpectedly dying. I don’t trust a single device in my possession. Technology is not there yet. In order to get vaping experience compatible with a real cigarette you will need something that is way bigger than a typical cigarette.  Maintenance is messy and time consuming. Be prepared to refill, recharge and replace coils/wicks on a regular basis. No, not even close to the Apple level of convenience, more like a PC XT 286 running DOS. I’d say most of the products are still at the hobbyist / DIY level. 
  3. Majority of e-Liquids have strong artificial undertones. Fruity cereal, caramel and candy alike. Very sweet to my liking and unpleasant for vaping.
  4. Most of the brick-and-mortar stores look like a tattoo parlour rather than an elegant tobacco boutique.  Same goes for staff appearance. I always feel like I am buying something totally illegal. Not cool for me. There are many wealthy smokers out there who would love to try vaping in order to quit smoking. They wouldn’t mind to pay premium for high quality well made products and care about their shopping experience. Just a food for thought for some store owners
Saving money by vaping?

I have spent about $600 in the first month but I have no regrets. Well may be except for $120 that I wasted on cigalikes.


Vaping keeps me away from smoking. Period.  And yes, it is generally agreed that vaping is a better option than smoking in many regards. Although it shouldn’t be an excuse for poor quality control or poor choice of materials. The industry might not be legally regulated yet, but is being watched closely by the vast vaping community and all potential issues reported immediately.  My concern about poor choice of materials is just a concern at the moment. But it's growing. I don't trust any company on the market. But  I can reduce the risk. Aspire Nautilus Mini is on the shelf collecting dust. I have replaced Kanger stock coils with Kanthal based coils and rebuilt Delta II with real organic cotton wicks.  I am vaping at a lower voltage/wattage and keeping enough liquid in the tank to prevent dry hits and carbonyl production. New temperature control devices (DNA 40) might be an answer to this overheating story.  I am also waiting for Dr. Farsalinos’ conclusion on the safety of vaping.

More Canadian e-juice companies, like Dvineejuice, Flavour Crafters, DashVapes, Stinky Canuck are testing their products and providing ECTA certification. That's great!

I have not found my perfect e-juice yet but managed to significantly improve overall experience and taste by selecting “earthy” flavours and following simple juice breathing / steeping techniques before using it. Works for now.

In conclusion. 

My learning curve was bumpy but I am very happy with my decision to start vaping instead of smoking.  There are still many unknowns and annoyances but vaping is quickly evolving and I am absolutely positive that we will see many more better and safer products in 2015.

1 comment: