Those new to vaping are immediately faced with any number of choices. What device should I use, what flavor(s) should I try, what (if any) level of nicotine do I want…etc. Those are some of the more obvious choices that need to be made. But there is another choice that can matter more than one might think. The PG/VG ratio.
Particularly if you plan on mixing your own custom-made e-juice, it is essential to know the difference between PG and VG, but the ratio can also mean the difference between a smooth inhale and exhale with no throat irritation or a vape that (for some) presents more throat discomfort than did smoking a cigarette.
What Is PG/VG Ratio?
First off, PG is propylene glycol. VG is vegetable glycerin. These are both used in vaping to provide what is called a “throat hit”. Smokers experience a similar sensation when smoking a cigarette. Aside from nicotine, flavoring, and water, they are two of the few main ingredients in vape juice. Their percentage, or ratio, is what is referred to here. If there are equal amounts of both in your e-juice, the ratio would be 50/50.
- Propylene Glycol (PG) tends to provide a strong throat-hit. Learn about PG here.
- Vegetable Glycol (VG) tends to give a smoother hit, and produce thick vapor. Learn about VG here.
What PG-VG Should I Choose?
Here are 5 things that may have an influence on what ratio you choose:
1. PG better supports flavors
This can be a subtle but important difference. Since there is virtually no taste to PG, so it will never interfere with your chosen flavor of e-liquid.
2. PG soaks into the wick faster
That means that VG heavy e-liquids are going to take longer to reach your coil and that can be a problem. Puffing depletes the wick’s e-liquid. You will get a dry puff if your wick hasn’t re-soaked, and that tastes bad. But PG soaks into the wick faster because it is thinner, thereby reducing dry hits.
3. VG produces thicker, denser vapor
If you’re looking for a good throat hit, you may find VG lacking, but when it comes to vapor production, it is superior to PG. This may not be an important factor for new vapers, but if you’re trying to replace the sensory experience of smoking, it can be a crucial factor.
4. PG provides a strong throat-hit like cigarettes
This is going to matter more if you’re giving up cigarettes and using vaping as a replacement. The transition can be easier if you feel more like you’re getting a good throat hit during vaping.
5. PG sensitivity
Certain individuals find that they have a sensitivity (or even allergy) to PG. If you find yourself experiencing pretty bad throat irritation during vaping, it could be because you are sensitive to PG. By lessening the ratio of PG (or eliminating it entirely) in your e-juice, you should be able to more thoroughly enjoy the experience and flavor of vaping.
Find your Favorite Vape Juice!
It’s important to know which of these ingredients are listed first in the ratio and unfortunately, that is not consistent with all e-juices. One example of a ratio listing could be 70/30 VG/PG. This is likely to mean that the 70% denotes a higher VG juice. Read the vape juice labels carefully, so you know how to apply the ratio.
To decide which ratio is best for you, experimentation is probably your best bet. Use the five determining factors listed above if you already know what kind of vapor cloud, throat hit, etc. you want – or if you are using vaping to quit smoking – and adjust your ratios accordingly.
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