What is Vaping? Everything You Need to Know About Vaping

Abigail At Breazy

11th Apr 2023

What is Vaping? Everything You Need to Know About Vaping

The vaping community has grown at a phenomenal rate over the years and has become a staple in American, as well as global, culture. Because of this, you probably have some idea of what it is and how it works. Even so, are you a current smoker considering making the switch? Are you curious and would like to try it? Need to know everything about something before trying it?

Here's a guide to everything you'll need to know, so you'll be able to get started right away.

First, what is vaping, exactly?

Vaping is the act of inhaling vapor produced by heating e-liquid through an electronic device called a personal vaporizer, or electronic cigarette.

The liquid is usually a combination of propylene glycol, vegetable glycerin, nicotine, and natural/artificial flavors. When vaped, the liquid is absorbed by a wick (commonly cotton or some other absorptive material) threaded through a wire coil, which is then heated by a battery in order to produce vapor that is then inhaled. It's tobacco-free, and often nicotine-free as well. Vaping should never be confused with smoking, as there is no smoke involved.

A 'vape' consists of an atomizer, a power delivery device (called a 'mod'), and a battery. Atomizers can stand alone ('dripping atomizers' require the vaper to drip fresh liquid every few puffs), or be sealed in a tank (rebuildable tank atomizers or clearomizers, characterized by factory-built, throwaway coils) for longer intervals between refills. A mod can be as simple as an 'eGo-style' stick that incorporates the battery and control unit into one, though many use replaceable lithium ion batteries and specialized computer chips to allow for easy customization of the vaping experience.

Vaping as we know it today is built around the advancements of Hon Link, considered to be the father of modern vaping. If you'd like to know more about the history of vaping, here's a previous article that covers the topic in greater depth.

Now that you the basics down, what do you need to start vaping? The options are endless, but here are a few basic pointers.

Pens are the most common device used by beginners, but even among entry level vapers mods are starting to take the reins. Another resurgent device is the cig-a-like, which is small, simple, and packed with a heavy nicotine punch to appeal to current smokers. This type of device was created to mimic the experience of smoking, capturing that cylindrical shape of a cigarette. They aren't very customizable, usually sticking to one level of wattage, commonly pretty low. They are, though, very cheap and easy to find, as most convenience stores carry them, as well your local vape shop.

Mods are more advanced devices that allow for a more involved experience. They can be customized to your preferred vaping needs and are usually used with much higher power. With mods come larger tanks that are interchangeable between devices, meaning you'll be able to find one that is tailored to your preference. Choosing a tank to start with, though, can be pretty confusing, especially if you don't know your stuff. They come in five different types, these being standard, sub-ohm, RDA, RTA, and RDTA. If you'd like to know more about tanks, here's an article that explains them a bit more.  

Mods, also, aren't limited to the simple 'refill-your-tank setup.' There are mods that allow for dripping, which is basically the idea of constantly dripping juice on a coil each time you'd like to vape. Mods can also be rebuilt, allowing for the user to change coils, wicking material, airflow, etc; these all allow for different experiences, including more flavor, more clouds, tighter hits, etc. Building, though, is a pretty complicated process. So, it's probably best to start off with a simple mod and work your way up.

So now that you have a pretty good idea of what vaping is, we hope that you'll consider making the switch. Vaping, however, is really something reserved for ex-smokers. If you don't smoke or are underage, you're better off staying away from vaping altogether. It's best to just stay away if you don't smoke and don't do it just because it looks cool.