Most of us tend to think that when it comes to nicotine, there is no good or bad quality, however, many vapers are discovering that quality in the liquid form of nicotine is a real issue. Whether it be from a lack of purity or mishandling along the way, substandard nicotine can turn a pleasurable electronic cigarette experience into a harsh one.
More About Nicotine
First, nicotine is not tobacco. However, nicotine is present in the tobacco plant, as well as many other naturally growing plants. It is a natural pesticide, designed to keep the tobacco plant safe from pests.
There is no doubt that nicotine is an incredibly addictive substance, however, there is some question regarding whether it is truly safe or not, or if it even may have some benefits that are often shrouded by the negativity around tobacco smoke. This has unfortunately clouded the truth around the use of the substance in a non-combustible tobacco form. Nicotine is not only a stimulant, it is also a relaxant, giving it a wide range of uses in a pharmaceutical sense. There have been studies that have shown the use of nicotine can be effective to improve focus and have even been shown to help people who have been diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease. Those who smoke do not need to be told that they feel relaxed when they take that first drag, nor that if you can’t find your smoke you can’t seem to focus clearly on anything. The effects of nicotine may be mild, but they are noticeable, especially when you don’t have them.
Liquid nicotine itself is an extract from tobacco and other nicotine-carrying plants. Once extracted it must maintain a high purity level to be a good ingredient in a quality e-liquid.
How You Affect Nicotine Quality
If you have ever experienced a sort of peppery aftertaste, something that feels like It might not fit with the e-liquid you are vaping, then you may have even experienced a lower quality of nicotine.
This sort of harsher taste, that is a result of a lower quality nicotine, can come about from a variety of different sources.
- Purity – Nicotine must be at a 99% purity level if it is going to be a good quality e-liquid. All nicotine should be sold at this level and most are. While most e-liquids won’t specify their nicotine quality, in most cases you can be assured the manufacturers, especially if you buy USA made e-juice, are using this level of purity. However, lack of purity is not the only way that nicotine can be robbed of its freshness.
- Air Leaking – The biggest enemy of nicotine is oxidization. That is why e-liquids are generally sold in air tight bottles to keep the air from spoiling the juice. Keep your bottles tight to prolong the freshness.
- Light Exposure – Light can also affect your nicotine quality. It is best never to keep your liquids in direct sunlight or in vehicles where it can be exposed to longer periods of light. Dark places are preferred for proper storage.
- Temperature – Extreme heat can also do a number on your e-juice. Many even store their e-liquids in refrigerators, keeping them away from the extreme light and temperature exposure that can ruin the vaping experience.
All of the same principles we applied to proper e-liquid storage should be practices for all of your ingredients, especially your nicotine. Make sure you purchase your nicotine
from a reputable source to ensure purity, you may even want to read some user reviews. Then keep it stored in an air tight container, in a cool and dark place.
When you are mixing your e-liquid make sure you properly reseal your containers and date your ingredients to make sure you know how fresh your nicotine is. Nicotine can expire and lose its freshness over time as well, while there is a bit of a debate on how long this can take, most estimate that it is good for at least a full year.
For most, it has never even occurred to them that nicotine quality was even a thing—nicotine is just nicotine after all. However, between handling and initial purity levels, it’s safe to assume almost all vapers have come across a harsh and peppery e-liquid in their time. With a few simple care techniques and procedures for your nicotine or e-liquid and you can keep the harsh vapor at bay and have the most enjoyable vaping experience possible.