Buying vape juice isn’t easy if you’re new to vaping and live in the European Union or the United Kingdom. A big part of that has to do with the fact that e-liquid comes in two types: freebase nicotine and nicotine salt. In regions such as the United States, it’s easy to understand whether you should buy Freebase or Nic salt because the two types of vape juice have very different nicotine strengths. Freebase e-liquid is available in strengths as low as 3 mg/ml, and nicotine salt vape juice comes in strengths as high as 50 mg/ml – that’s a huge difference.
In the EU and UK, on the other hand, regulations limit all e-liquid to a maximum strength of 20 mg/ml regardless of whether it uses freebase nicotine or nicotine salt – and top brands like Hale Vaping are typically available in both types. To make matters even more confusing, the two types of e-liquid are typically available in roughly the same ranges of nicotine strengths. Freebase e-liquid usually comes in strengths of 3, 6, 12, and 18 mg/ml, whereas nicotine salt vape juice is usually available in strengths of 10 and 20 mg/ml.
So, should you buy Freebase or nic salt e-liquid if you’re new to vaping and live in the EU or UK? In this article, we’ll break down the two options and explain the factors that should influence your decision.
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Do You Want the Strongest Possible Nicotine Rush?
The first thing you need to understand about freebase nicotine vs. nicotine salt is that nic salt e-liquid is typically the only type that you can find in the maximum allowed nicotine strength of 20 mg/ml. The highest strength that you can find for freebase vape juice, on the other hand, is usually 18 mg/ml. In practice, you’re not likely to notice much of a difference between the 18 mg/ml and 20 mg/ml strengths. If your nicotine requirements are high, though – and you want to feel the strongest nicotine buzz possible – you’ll want to buy nicotine salt vape juice because it’s generally the only way to get the maximum 20 mg/ml strength.
Do You Want the Strongest Possible Throat Hit?
If you’re new to vaping, one of the most important things to learn is that nicotine absorption is only one component of the satisfaction that you experience when you vape. The other component is the physical sensation that you feel in your throat when you inhale the nicotine. People call that sensation throat hit. You’ve very familiar with throat hit as a smoker, and you probably really look forward to feeling that sensation if you haven’t had a cigarette for a while.
With a nicotine strength of 18 mg/ml or 20 mg/ml, you’ll definitely feel an assertive throat hit when you vape. If you want the throat hit to be as strong as it can possibly be, though, you should strongly consider trying freebase nicotine e-liquid because the alkalinity of freebase nicotine makes it feel somewhat irritating to the throat at high strengths. The alkalinity enhances the throat hit created by the nicotine, which can help to give you a greater sense of satisfaction than you’d get from the nicotine alone.
Does Vaping Give You a Sort Throat or Make You Cough?
Some people like to experience a really intense throat hit when vaping, and others are at the other end of the spectrum. Maybe you’re completely happy with the nicotine level of your vape juice, but you find it difficult to enjoy vaping fully because your e-liquid gives you a sore throat or makes you cough. If that’s the case, it’s likely that you’re currently using freebase nicotine and should consider switching to nicotine salt.
As we mentioned above, the reason why the throat hit feels stronger when you use a freebase nicotine e-liquid is because of the nicotine’s alkalinity. While some people interpret the alkalinity as very satisfying, though, others find it irritating and unpleasant. The reason why nicotine salt vape juice exists is that it has a more neutral pH than freebase nicotine, and that allows it to be much smoother at high nicotine strengths. Nicotine salt vape juice is the ideal choice if you’ve tried freebase e-liquid and found it difficult to enjoy because it irritated your throat.
What Type of Vaping Device Are You Using?
One of the key differences between freebase nicotine and nicotine salt e-liquid is that it’s uncommon to find nicotine salt vape juice is very low strength. The lowest nicotine strengths that are commercially available for vape juice – usually 3 mg/ml and 6 mg/ml for most brands – are generally only manufactured in freebase nicotine form. That fact might not be important to you if you use a small vaping device like a refillable pod system, but it’s likely to be crucially important to you if you use a larger device such as a vape mod or a pod mod. If you have a larger vaping device, it’s likely that freebase nicotine vape juice is the ideal choice for you.
The reason why it’s important to use an e-liquid with a low nicotine strength if you have a powerful vaping device is that the more vapor your device generates, the more e-liquid you’ll inhale with each puff. If you’re consuming a large amount of e-liquid each time you vape, you’ll need to use a lower nicotine strength to compensate. Today’s vape mods are so powerful that the most common nicotine strength used with those devices is 3 mg/ml.
If you’re using a small vaping device, the opposite of the above is true. Since your device produces smaller vapor clouds, you’ll need to use an e-liquid with a higher nicotine strength in order to maintain your desired level of satisfaction. In that case, you can use either freebase or nicotine salt vape juice as long as the nicotine strength is right for your needs. Reading through the tips in this article, we’ve hopefully provided you with a starting point that you can use to decide which type of vape juice to try first.