These days, vape juice is available in a lot of different nicotine strengths. Many vape juice manufacturers offer their e-liquid in strengths that range from nicotine-free all the way up to very high strengths like 5% nicotine. This has led vapers all over to wonder not only what strength is right for them but whether strengths like 5% are simply too high.
Understanding 5% E-Liquid
When you see a per cent like 5% in conjunction with a given e-juice, what is being conveyed is the nicotine strength of the liquid. With 5% strength, there is 50mg of nicotine per millilitre of vape liquid. This might seem normal given that there are popular vape companies like Juul Labs that sell their vape pods in 5% strength, but the reality is that this is a very high strength e-liquid and it’s not suitable for all vapers.
If you are buying 5% strength vape juice, it is almost certainly made with nicotine salts. The reason for this is that nic salts can be vaped at strengths much higher than freebase nicotine before becoming so harsh that they’re unpleasant to use.
Is 5% Strength E-Liquid Strong, Perhaps Too Strong?
Heavy tobacco users that are switching to vaping might find 5% to be a good fit for their nicotine needs. Light smokers and average smokers may very well find it to be too much. To put this in perspective, the United Kingdom doesn’t allow e-liquids to be sold locally that contain anywhere near 5% nicotine strength. Not even half that, 2.5%, can be sold in the UK under the rules outlined in the Tobacco and Related Products Regulations (TRPR).
TRPR rules restrict e-liquids sold in the UK to no more than 2% strength, which is 20mg/ml.
Does that mean that there’s no place for 5% strength vape juice? Not really. What it does mean, however, is that the government in the UK has stepped in to set a limit that not all vape users may find practical. As a result, short fill e-liquid bottles have become popular with some vapers in the UK. Shortfills, as they’re sometimes called, are bottles of e-liquid that aren’t completely filled by their manufacturers, leaving a space in the top of the bottle where a nicotine shot can be added by the user to adjust the nicotine strength of the e-liquid to the user’s preference. This has been a legal workaround for some time for vapers in the UK that desire more nicotine in their e-liquid than what the TRPR rules allow.
With all of this in mind, there is a chance that 5% is right for you. If you are a heavy smoker that’s switching to e-cigarettes, this is a strength that you might consider as it provides a substantial amount of nicotine with each puff. Then again, there’s a chance that it’s too strong even then.
The Right E-Liquid Strength For You
When we take a look at Vaper Empire’s Caramel Tobacco e-liquid, which is one of the many flavours that the company offers to Australian vapers, the nicotine options range from 0mg to 24mg. Translating this, the options range from 0% to 2.4%, and there are three options between the two points. Here’s how the company breaks down the strengths that they offer their bottled vape juices in:
- 0mg – Zero Nicotine
- 6mg – Light (0 to 10 p/day)
- 12mg – Average (10 to 20 p/day)
- 18mg – Heavy (20 to 30 p/day)
- 24mg – Very Heavy (30+ p/day)
The “per day” part of that is cigarettes per day. Those who smoke between 0-10 cigarettes a day should consider using the company’s 6mg/ml strength e-liquids. Those who smoke between 10 to 20 per day should consider using their 12mg/ml e-liquid. For heavy smokers and very heavy smokers, the recommended strengths are 18mg/ml and 24mg/ml respectively.
Vaper Empire, one of the more popular vape brands in Australia, does not offer any e-liquids as strong as 50mg/ml or anywhere even close to that. Considering this fact, you may want to consider using a strength lower than 5% if you’re unsure of whether it’s the right strength for you.