8 Mistakes That Are Holding You Back From Switching to Vaping


Anybody who’s tried to quit smoking knows it isn’t easy. The rising irritability and fierce cravings make every single day seem like a never-ending gauntlet, as you battle withdrawal symptoms and do your utmost to resist the urge to head down to the store and pick up another pack of cigarettes.

That’s really where the appeal of vaping lies. You can kick the “deadly” part of your deadly habit without losing the nicotine. It makes switching appeal. But what if you’ve tried to make the switch and been unsuccessful? Does that mean you’re condemned to smoke your way to an early grave?

Thankfully not.

Vaping is more complicated than smoking, and as a result there are several mistakes smokers new to the hobby make that hold them back from making the switch. Here are 8 of the most common ones:

1 – Choosing a Crappy E-Cig

As a smoker, it’s very tempting to try a device that looks like a cigarette (a “cigalike”). It seems like it will smooth the transition, but the problem is that these devices are low-powered and severely lacking when it comes to getting you nicotine.

eGo-style devices improve the situation a little, but the best advice is to get yourself a basic mod. There are tons of options, but affordable and simple “all-in-one” devices like the ELeaf iStick or the Kanger Nebox are ideal for smokers just making the switch. They boost the power, have more substantial battery life and get you more of the nicotine you’re looking for.

2 – Choosing the Wrong Nicotine Level

As a smoker, the amount of nicotine in the tobacco is the amount of nicotine you get. It’s unbeatably simple. But when you switch to vaping, you’re presented with a lot of options: 0.6 %, 1.2 %, 1.8 %, 2.4% and others: how do you know which one to choose? If you opt for 0.6 or 1.2 %, you’re probably holding yourself back with a classic mistake: getting the wrong nicotine level.

Most smokers find 1.8 % nicotine (or 18 mg/ml) is the minimum amount they need to stave off cravings for tobacco. If you still didn’t feel like you were getting enough nicotine, bump it up to 2.4 % and see if that helps.

3 – Not Finding the Right Flavor

Many smokers think “flavor doesn’t really matter” and opt for whatever sub-par tobacco or menthol replication they can get their hands on for cheap.

The big problem is that when it comes to e-juice, you get what you pay for. Instead of a poorly-executed tobacco replication, smokers looking for an authentic flavor should consider naturally extracted tobacco e-juice, which captures more of the nuance and depth of the real deal than concoctions of artificial flavorings. If you’re willing to expand beyond tobacco flavors, though, you should try some of the excellent fruity and sweet options that vapers love.

4 – Puffing Like It’s a Cigarette

When you switch to vaping, it’s tempting to assume that you just puff in the same way as you would a cigarette, but you’d be wrong.

Research has shown that taking longer, deeper puffs than you would on a cigarette helps you get more nicotine and thereby feel more satisfied after vaping. Try slower, gentler puffs and you should have a better experience.

5 – Trying to Go it Alone

Since switching from smoking to vaping seems easy, many smokers assume they won’t need any support to make the switch. But, as we’ve learned, vaping really isn’t as simple as you may assume.

That’s why reaching out to the vaping community for support can make all the difference. Whether it’s tips on choosing the best device, advice on how to solve any hardware-related problems you run into or even just moral support, don’t be afraid to ask.

6 – Get the Right Balance of PG and VG

Do you think you could switch to vaping, but find it too harsh on your throat? Your problem might come down to your choice of PG/VG ratio.

High PG e-liquid has a strong “throat hit,” and many smokers (and vapers) find it too irritating to enjoy. VG produces more vapor and is a lot smoother on your throat. Some smokers may prefer a 70/30 PG/VG ratio (for a stronger throat hit), but 50/50 offers an even balance of the two.  If you still find vaping too harsh at 50/50, you might have to go for a juice with 70 % VG or higher.

7 – Poor Preparation

Not wanting to spend too much before you switch to vaping makes sense, but if you’re making a serious quit attempt, not having enough vaping gear can really hold you back. Most smokers will have just one device, but what do you do when it’s on charge? The temptation to reach for a cigarette may be too much to overcome.

The best advice is to have a spare device when you try to quit so you have something to use while one is charging. It also helps to stock up on e-liquids and atomizer heads so you won’t be left with nothing to vape.

8 – Expecting a Magic Bullet

Finally, because switching to vaping seems easy, many smokers expect vaping to be a “magic bullet.” But however it might appear, you’ll still need a good helping of willpower. Vaping can make quitting enjoyable, but you still need the determination to get you through the tougher times.

Conclusion – E-Cigs Are a Tool; You Just Learn How to Use Them

The core lesson is that e-cigs are just a tool, and like any other tool, you need to understand how to use it in order to get the result you’re looking for. The reality is that vaping is more complicated than smoking, and you’ll still need to put the work in to make the transition. The upside is that once you’ve found your right device and e-juice, the process of quitting smoking becomes more enjoyable than you’d have ever thought possible.

Jimmy, lover, blogger, vaper and ex-smoker. I’ve been blogging about and supporting Vaping since 2009. They changed my life and I think history will show them as one of the most significant public health invention of the 21st century.

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5 Responses

  1. Michael Roberts says:

    I think that sums it up pretty well. I know I made the mistake of purchasing a sub-ohm device first.
    Due to my advanced COPD, my lungs simply couldn’t
    take it.
    Fortunately for me, I went to another shop where a lady went above and beyond to help me find something I could vape without feeling like I was
    going to hack up a chunk of lung.

    I simply put a Nautilus tank on the VTC mini I already
    had. Running at 8-9 watts, I could vape like a mad man.

    One thing, since the e-liquids does not have the
    chemicals in tobacco that desensitise the mouth
    and throat, making the smoke less irritating.
    Starting with an 18-24mg nicotine may be harsh
    to the mouth and throat.

    I actually had to start with a 3mg for about the first
    week or so. (probably due to my COPD)
    In the second week, I was already breathing better
    and was able to increase it to 6mg.

    I have a brother who used an ego pen type with
    18mg. He tried my subtank with 6mg and got
    dizzy. Do Alot depends on the device used.

    My pick for a new vaper, 20-30 watt Istick with
    a Nautilus tank. You can now use the Triton
    Clapton coils in the Nautilus, to get a few more
    watts capability, along with more flavor and cloud.

    It takes a few days to get used to the subtle differences in smoking and vaping.
    Be patient.

    Don’t get caught up in the high wattage.
    Three months in, I am still only using my two
    VTC minis at 30-35 watts.

    Don’t be afraid to smoke a stinkie now and then.
    As time passes, the desire to do so WILL be satisfied
    quickly with a vape.
    I smoked one after meals for the first week or so.
    Never felt any guilt.
    While now when I smell a smoke, it smells good.
    A few vapes takes it all away.

  2. Michael Roberts says:

    On the subject of e-liquids.
    I love tobacco, and of course, smoking

    I tried some of the tobacco flavored liquids.
    None were the high dollar extracted liquids.
    They were awful.
    If you don’t have easy access to the “real”
    extracted liquids.
    Try a light spearmint, wintergreen, or peppermint. These tend to be a little easier
    on a new vaper’s throat.

  3. John says:

    Thanks for sharing this. Anyone looking to really get into vaping shouldn’t waste their money on short-term, cheaply made e-cigs. It’s best to invest in something that will last longer and be more durable and effective for what they’re looking for.

  4. Julio says:

    I think that vaping is not for everyone. And second thing, buy cheap tank which is for mouth to lung vapers, and try it. Buy hard concentrate liquids of nicotine. And I soon you should quit smoke and when go to better tanks and mods.

  5. Chris Murphy says:

    I am now a e-cig smoker. I gave up my 15 year habit and i certainly made the right switch. I always go for the high level liquid as i like the hit.

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