E-liquids are an important part of your vaping experience, but you could well be confused by the mention of VG and PG – what do these terms mean? VG and PG are key ingredients in vape e-liquids. This article will explore both ingredients, with an insight into the VG / PG ratio – what it means and how it affects your vaping experience. First and foremost, we should consider what these two ingredients do.
What Does VG and PG Stand For?
The terminology of vaping can be confusing at first, especially if you’re an adult smoker who is searching for a smoke-free alternative to cigarettes. Here’s what we mean when it comes to the ingredients VG and PG:
What does VG stand for?
Vegetable Glycerine (VG) is used to thicken the e-liquid and, in turn, help create dense vapor in sub-ohm vapes. It’s derived from vegetable oil.
What does PG stand for?
Propylene Glycol (PG) – provides the throat hit sensation which has been likened to smoking.
VG and PG are used in a wide range of foods, medicines and cosmetics, but are they risk-free?
The two ingredients have been incorporated into vape e-liquids with a significant degree of care. Most e-liquids and e-cigarette refills use VG and PG as ingredients, it’s very common.
It is important to note that VG and PG e-liquids contain nicotine, an addictive substance. This means that e-liquids are not risk-free – nor are the vapes they are used in. However, it is widely accepted that vape e-liquids are less harmful compared to cigarettes. When it comes to nicotine in e-liquids, there are different types such as:
- Freebase nicotine – Contained within most e-liquids. Unless stated otherwise, you can usually assume an e-liquid contains this type of nicotine.
- Nicotine salts – Provide a smoother, quicker form of nicotine. There’s little sensation in the throat. E-liquids that contain this are often popular with vapers who don’t enjoy the throat sensation.
With different forms of nicotine, it can be difficult to make a decision. The best option is to see what suits you. Of course, when it comes to choosing the right e-liquid for you, we’re not just talking about nicotine. There’s something known as the VG / PG ratio, and it plays a big part in your vaping experience.
Understanding Liquid Types: The VG / PG Ratio Effect
An e-liquid is defined by a variety of factors, including the type of nicotine used. Another important factor, when it comes to VG and PG, is the ratio. That’s because a different ratio impacts the experience you will have. With that in mind, what sort of ratios can you expect? And, what do they do differently?
- Classic e-liquid: Sometimes, a “classic” is just the right fit. That might just be the case with this type of e-liquid, which contains a higher volume of VG than PG – usually a PG ratio of 70% or more. The “throat hit” sensation it provides is similar to smoking – a good choice for adult smokers who are in the process of switching to e-cigarettes.
- 50/50 e-liquid: Relatively straightforward, this type of e-liquid is often made up of half VG and half PG. This allows for a flexible vaping experience that means you can experience elements of both classic e-liquid and sub-ohm vaping.
- Sub-ohm e-liquid: Otherwise known as “max VG”, they’re generally built with a high volume of VG – 50% or more. VG makes an e-liquid thick, which in turn produces a high volume of vapor. This is commonly known as sub-ohm vaping.
Each type of e-liquid works better with a particular type of device. Let’s look at what sort of e-liquid you might pick for your device, or vice versa.
Which VG / PG Ratio Should I Choose for My Vape Kit or Tank?
While personal preference plays a factor in the type of vape experience you want, your current device should play a big part in the e-liquid you choose. Finding an e-liquid and vape kit, or tank, that works together is important.
When it comes to sub-ohm vaping, you’ll want a high-wattage kit. This style of vaping allows the vaper to produce large clouds of vapor. A 50/50 e-liquid can fit with most devices and wattages, think of it as a bit of an in-between.
Finally, the classic e-liquid works best with a low-wattage kit – producing a low volume of vapor with a “throat hit,” similar to a cigarette. One important factor within your kit, that we have not yet discussed, is the coil and its resistance.
Do Coils Matter When It Comes to VG and PG?
Coils also play a significant part in your vaping experience – specifically the resistance.
With a classic e-liquid or around 60-70% PG, your vape’s coil should have a higher resistance. Expect a stronger flavor and “throat hit” sensation.
It’s commonly accepted that 50/50 e-liquids should be enjoyed with a medium resistance coil.
When it comes to sub-ohm vaping, a low-resistance coil is probably what you’re looking for. A 50-50 e-liquid could work with a coil like this, but a high VG e-liquid is probably going to see the best results when it comes to vapor clouds.
It’s important to note that, if your device has a variable wattage or voltage, you will need to adjust the settings in line with the coils and e-liquid you’re using.
Finding a coil that fits with your e-liquid is important as an improper partnership might impact your device. For instance, a coil with low resistance might encounter problems with an e-liquid of 50% PG or higher. You might experience a burnt flavor or, even worse, your vape might leak. As a vaper, you’ll want to avoid problems like these.
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