What are Nicotine Salts?
Since its inception, vaping has always remained constant, from the ingredients used to how they all work. At their essence, nothing has really changed deep down, the equipment has just gotten bigger and better. As the industry changed, choice for vapers has grew, from flavours available, equipment types or even a much bigger spectrum of ways to vape. However over the past 2 years, a new source of nicotine has emerged, something designed perfectly for new vapers that can provide them with a much improved vaping experience without changing the core of what vaping actually is. The new product is called Nicotine Salts, so what I want to do is to delve into what nicotine salts are and more importantly, are they the right product for you?
What is Nicotine
Nicotine is the reason why we all started vaping in the first place. Whether or not we still use nicotine is down to personal choice, the reason for it in the beginning was the same for us all. What exactly is nicotine though?
Nicotine is a substance that is found naturally in quite a lot of different products, some you would not expect. The main source is in tobacco plants, which is where the addictive substance is commonly associated, however it can also be found in tomatoes, potatoes, eggplants, cauliflower and even green peppers. The difference between tobacco plants and the rest however is the amount of nicotine present. There is a significant amount in tobacco plants and therefore the main source of the drug. What it actually is, is simply a stimulant drug, which carries a significant addictive properties when it enters the human body.
Nicotine in Vaping
For many years, Nicotine has been used in its most natural form when it comes to vaping. Its purpose has been to simply replace the nicotine that would be found In tobacco but deliver it in a way that eliminates all the chemicals and ingredients that comes with the tobacco plant. It works very much the same as it did in cigarettes for example when applied to vaping. The natural form is suspended in a mixture of Vegetable Glycerine and Propylene Glycol and inhaled much the same way.
Freebase Nicotine as it is commonly known as, is a high alkaline substance which when used in vaping, provides a much harsher throat hit to simulate the effect of a cigarette. So when used in higher amounts, it is vaped at a much lower power , with the nicotine level decreased as power increases.
Freebase nicotine is used in most nicotine based products from tobacco, to vaping, to NRG therapy. So Nic Salts therefore can be classed as irregular nicotine use, but what exactly does that mean?
At heart, nicotine salt is very much the same nicotine that is found in freebase. The one key difference with it however is the Benzoic acid that it contains which gives it a much smoother inhale when used in vaping. This is because the acid makes it much more neutral on the PH scale as a result of the lack of alkaline compared to regular nicotine. Furthermore it can be inhaled much easier at lower temperatures compared to standard freebase which makes it ideal for vapers who prefer to vape using the MTL style. Because of the smoother hit from the salts, it means higher doses can be used to deliver the same ‘hit’ that would be found in a cigarette without adding the harsher throat hit that standard nicotine has.
Where did Nicotine Salt comes from?
Although not invented by them, the JUUL device over in USA was the first company to really adopt nicotine salt as a standard product. The rise of the product and the market share it boasts can be put down partly due to the much more effective way it has helped smokers quit entirely, which is where the nicotine salt has benefited them. By providing a much higher dose of nicotine that essentially mimics the cigarette, it has led people to quit much quicker by replacing their habit with a much safer one instead. As the popularity grew, so has the adoption from other companies and over the past 18 months, E-Liquid companies have developed their own brands around the new style of nicotine compound.
Nicotine Salt- Pros and Cons
Now we have established exactly what nicotine salt actually is, should you be looking to adopt them over your regular nicotine liquids? To find out, let us look into the positives and negatives of using them to really determine if they are for you.
Nicotine Salt Pros
- Much more effective way of delivering nicotine when quitting. This is purely down to the higher doses that can be used in E-Liquids due to the smoother inhale. This means a device using 20mg nicotine salts will provide a much more effective hit of nicotine to the user to curb cravings compared to regular at similar amounts.
- Smoother Vape. This again is something that provides a much more satisfying vape when used, if the flavour is strong and there is no harshness from the nicotine then it becomes much more enjoyable to use nicotine salts.
- Less effect on the flavour of the nicotine which in turns makes the e-liquid much more enjoyable. As freebase nicotine increases, it has a much more adverse effect on E-Liquid, compared to Nicotine salt which effects the flavour much less. What this means overall is that a similar strength nicotine salt will therefore carry much more flavour.
- Ideal for smaller devices compared to sub ohm vaping. With the rise of the pod device market there is a much bigger demand for lower powered vaping than ever before. Using nicotine salt it can provide a cheaper and easier way of vaping compared to the high juice consumption and maintenance of a sub ohm tank for example. Additionally it allows for more discrete vaping which can be ideal in more public areas.
Nicotine Salt Cons
- They won’t be for everyone. Using nicotine salts in a high powered device for example but delivering a much smoother vape can remove any throat hit from their vape and remove any satisfaction. This is why you won’t really find any low amount nicotine salt liquid on the market, the freebase nicotine at that level can provide a much better throat hit.
- Thicker than regular Nicotine. This again is why it is more suited to low power vaping. Taking a lower, cooler vape, the nicotine salts become really effective. However at a higher power, their extra thickness combined with the thickness of the vegetable glycerine could potentially cause issues for coils wicking.
Despite being a relatively new product on the market in vaping, the rise of Nicotine Salts is growing by the month as more and more companies adopt their own ranges to provide their own Nicotine Salt range. Combined with the rising popularity of the smaller pod systems, it has never been a better time if you prefer MTL vaping.
Nicotine salt can be ideal for vaping in such a way and more so for smokers who are quitting in favour of vaping. It is not just the enjoyment factor that nicotine salt can provide, there is also the practicality of them also. Allowing higher doses, it can be much more effective in helping curb the cravings and therefore lead to a much more effective number of people giving up smoking for good.
Nicotine Salts are very much the future in vaping for new vapers and MTL vapers alike. It is exciting to see just how quickly they are growing and how effective companies are in providing them to everyone.