Over the last years, e-cigarettes have become very popular - but what exactly is an e-cigarette?
An e-cigarette, also known as an electronic cigarette or a vaporiser cigarette, is an electronic device used to simulate smoking tobacco. They are aimed at smokers who want to get the nicotine kick, but without the smell, tar and toxin laden smoke that goes hand in hand with traditional smoking. E-cigarettes are battery powered devices that vaporise a liquid nicotine solution, delivering a much safer vapour only containing the nicotine that is sought.
E-cigarette have been designed to look and feel as similar as possible like common cigarettes. Most E-cigs are reusable, and come with replaceable or refillable cartridges. Disposable models are also commonly available, and usually come in the same flavours as the reusable cartridges.
Although vaporisation is nothing new, E-cigarettes in their current shape and form were invented by the Chinese pharmacist Hon Lik in 2003, and first hit the market in 2004. Since then, the technology behind them has advanced rapidly, with many models now being fully automatic, sensing when the user inhales, activating the heat source, and vaporising the liquid before sending it to the mouth piece.
Most e-cigarettes consists of three main components. These are the battery, the heating element and the mouthpiece/cartridge. The battery is at the end of the e cigarette, and occasionally comes with a red LED at the tip to simulate the glow of a real cigarette. The battery is connected to the heating element which sits in the middle of the e-cig. It heats up rapidly as a toke is taken, vaporising the liquid nicotine that comes into contact with it. The heating element is attached to the cartridge that contains the liquid nicotine. As the liquid nicotine is vaporised by the heating element, it is drawn back through the cartridge and through the mouth piece to the user.
A prime example of an e-cigarette that uses the most current technology is the Stigx e-cigarette. The Stigx is based on new advancements in technology that enhance the quality of the vapour, ensuring that the heating element is always in contact with liquid nicotine. It has also assimilated recent advances in ergonomic design into its build, producing a higher quality E-cigarette that feels more comfortable in the hand than older generations of e-cigarettes.
Liquid nicotine, also commonly referred to as e-liquid or e-juice, is commonly made from propylene glycol, which is regularly used as a food additive and in asthma inhalers. There are no known health risks associated with its use, and the Federal Drug Administration of the USA classifies it as a “Generally Recognised Safe Substance”. It is into this propylene glycol that the nicotine and flavourings are dissolved, to create the final product.
As liquid nicotine is vaporised, there is no need for tobacco. This means that the vapour can be flavoured with a range of tastes for extra enjoyment. This in itself has bred its own following of flavour enthusiast - it is now possible to get nicotine free vapour liquids for use in e-cigarettes. Many now use e-cigarettes as portable vaporisers to be used purely for recreational purposes instead of obtaining a nicotine kick.
For those who are looking for nicotine, the liquids can come in varying levels of strength, allowing most to get the exact potency they are looking for. It offers a lot of flexibility to the user and ensures the most pleasurable experience possible can be achieved. It is worth noting that not all e-liquids are of the same quality, and although different companies have the same flavours, the experience can vary greatly. Stigx, once again, are a company that are a great example of producing high quality products – their liquid nicotine range has proven to be very tasty and made to very high standards.
E-cigs avoid most the toxins are are present in common cigarette smoke; there‘s no tar, no carbon monoxide and none of the hundreds of chemicals that are produced in the process of burning. However, nicotine is still being inhaled, which can affect various parts of the body. The big difference between E-cigs and regular cigarettes is that e-cigs only contain nicotine in the vapour, which it is much healthier than smoking a tobacco cigarette – as there is no tar, carbon monoxide or any of the other nasty chemicals.