Before we jump in, let’s be clear – these are recommendations from former smokers and current vapers, and are meant as suggestions. No two vapers – or smokers – are alike, and no single recommendation will work for everyone. Finding an ideal nicotine strength is a personal journey – one that will likely require a little trial and error before finding an optimized experience.
We have seen many beginners achieve success by roughly matching a nicotine strength to how many mg of nicotine in the cigarettes they smoked, and how often they did so.
As a general rule, heavier smokers should look to higher nicotine levels in less powerful devices. Cig-a-like brands are designed for these smokers, and usually come in higher strengths, ranging from 1.8% (the percentage of nicotine solution in the included e-liquid) all the way to 3.6% or higher. Levels in this range should closely match a cigarette-like experience, as they provide a high nicotine “jolt” and a satisfyingly thump of a throat hit.
For veteran vapers, those numbers (and results) seem unfathomable. But for those who just tossed aside the cowboy killers, it’s a welcome breath of relief.
Even casual smokers should stick in the 12-18% range, as this will still replicate the smoking experience, but isn’t as abrasive to the throat.
Now, we can hear some detractors already – “You’re telling us to stay on nicotine?” – so we need to reiterate that nicotine isn’t the dangerous part of smoking. By starting at a high nicotine level, new vapers are less likely to abandon their devices after repeat bouts of frustration.
On the contrary, we feel vaping should be a comfortable and enjoyable part of your daily routine. If an e-cig isn’t satisfying your needs, or if you find yourself blowing through cartomizers and disposable devices at a breakneck pace, then you’re not getting your money’s worth.
If you find over time – and many vapers do – that you could probably step down your nicotine intake, then there are a ton of options for doing so.
Maybe you found that your cig-a-like in a particular strength, is all you need, and this is where your vaping exploration ends. If so, congratulations – this is fantastic! It’s also rare.
More than likely, though, you might find yourself perusing more advanced vaping devices. If so, the nicotine situation becomes a little more complicated.