If you’re a smoker, you’ve probably read about electronic cigarettes many times over the past few years and wondered whether they could really work as an alternative to tobacco cigarettes. It can be hard to find legitimate information online about getting started with e-smoking because a lot of what you’ll read online is going to come from pushy affiliates trying to sell you something. I cover the benefits of e-smoking elsewhere on the Vapegrl website, and you can look at the e-cigarette models section for specific product recommendations. Here, I’m going to discuss the basics of e-cigarettes in very general terms and explain what you need to get started with e-smoking and have the best possible experience. Be sure to check out my article about the best e-cigarette for beginners before you leave!
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Getting Started with E-Smoking Kits
Although it’s possible to assemble many types of e-cigarettes from parts, many people get started with e-smoking by buying complete kits. That’s what I recommend, as well. An e-cigarette kit should include, at minimum, one rechargeable battery, one USB port battery charger and several cartomizers. This type of kit should not cost more than $20 if the battery is cigarette-sized. I discuss some of the least expensive models in my article about the L88B e-cigarette. From there, the sky is the limit. Some e-cigarette kits cost up to around $75. These kits should include at least two high-capacity batteries, wall and USB port chargers, a good supply of e-cigarette liquid and some kind of carrying case or presentation box.
Generally, you should not spend more than $100 on an e-cigarette kit unless you are purchasing a USA-made e-cigarette. The rest are made in China and cost the merchant very little per kit. The fact that most e-cigarettes are made in China isn’t a problem, but you should know that there are a few merchants who attempt to price gouge a bit, charging upwards of $300 for e-cigarette kits with a wholesale cost of $30 at the most. I don’t suggest buying a disposable e-cigarette, by the way. By buying a disposable e-cigarette, you would only save a few dollars and you wouldn’t get anything you could reuse.
Getting Started with E-Smoking Parts
A good e-cigarette battery should hold a charge for up to a year or so. If you buy an e-cigarette kit with two batteries, you won’t have to worry about buying more for a while, but if you buy a kit with one battery, you may want to think about getting a spare. If you can’t afford to buy everything you need at once, your goal should be to have at least two of everything — two batteries, two chargers, and two atomizers if your e-cigarette doesn’t use disposable cartomizers — as quickly as possible after getting started with e-smoking. That way, if any part of your e-cigarette kit stops working, you won’t be stuck without a working e-cigarette while you wait for a replacement to ship.
Getting Started with E-Smoking Liquids
You might buy an e-cigarette kit just once, and you’ll probably buy parts only occasionally. The rest of the time — at a rate of about one bottle or pack of cartomizers per week — you’ll be buying e-cigarette liquids. When you’re getting started with e-smoking, you’ll probably try e-cigarette liquids from many different companies until you find your favorite flavor. This is the best part of e-smoking — there’s so much out there to taste! I usually suggest that new e-smokers get started by buying e-cigarette kits that include pre-filled cartomizers, because they’re so convenient; you just screw the cartomizer in and puff away. However, it costs a lot less to buy e-cigarette liquids by the bottle, and there are many different cartomizer types that will probably work with your e-cigarette. After you buy your e-cigarette kit, pick up some empty cartomizers and e-liquids from a few different companies. You can find lots of great e-cigarette liquids made in the US and UK; I don’t really like the e-liquids made in China. If an e-cigarette liquid company doesn’t tell you where its products originate from, don’t buy. It’s okay if your first e-cigarette kit includes Chinese liquid, though; most kits do.
Getting Started with E-Smoking Accessories
E-cigarette accessories can make your experience more convenient or stylish, but most really aren’t necessary when you are just getting started with e-smoking. In this product category, you can find items like plastic wraps to give colors and patterns to batteries, button covers, funky plastic, metal or glass drip tips and carrying cases. If you buy a smaller e-cigarette, one accessory I do suggest considering is a portable battery charging case or PCC. Many e-cigarette kits include charging cases, which can be useful because a small e-cigarette such as the one sold by Blu Cigs will give you 80 puffs at the most before you have to recharge it — and that’s twice the puffs that some other small e-cigarettes will give you. So, there’s always a chance that the battery will die when you can’t get to a USB port or power outlet. If you don’t have or need a PCC, I do suggest at least getting a hard carrying case to protect your e-cigarette from scratching and damage.
[green_box]The chemical diacetyl — dangerous when inhaled — has been used to add a buttery flavor to some e-cigarette liquids. If you taste buttery flavor notes in an e-liquid, ask the manufacturer to confirm that its e-liquids do not contain diacetyl.[/green_box]