What’s the next big thing in the world of vaping? If you haven’t heard, nicotine salts (also called “nic salts” and “nic salt juices”) are currently taking the industry by storm. But do nic salts really live up to the hype?
Pax Labs, the initial creators of nicotine salts, has found that nic salt juice users have a better vaping experience overall, since nic salts mimic the instant nicotine rush from a cigarette. But what is nicotine salt and what are the real benefits to vapers?
Nicotine salt is a form of nicotine found in tobacco leaves. But these salts aren’t just nicotine; they’re compounds containing nicotine and other organic components, creating an overall more stable molecule that is not easily vaporized or absorbed by the body.
That’s why the form of nicotine that is most commonly used in e-liquid is called freebase nicotine (the same form of nicotine used in cigarettes). Until recently, it’s been considered preferable for vaping due to its ability to be more easily vaporized.
But now, nicotine salt vape juices have been found to offer a more satisfying vape than your average freebase nicotine e-liquid. How?
The key is benzoic acid. It’s added in order to control the specific nicotine salt formed in e-liquid and — without getting too detailed about the chemistry — make it more easily vaporized and more “bioavailable” (more easily absorbed by the body).
An additional benefit is the effect of the acid on the pH of e-juice. Freebase nicotine has a high pH value, which means a harsher throat hit.
With the addition of benzoic acid, the actual vapor from nic salt juice has a lower pH, thus making it less harsh to vape while maintaining a high nicotine content.
The science and technical jargon are all great, but what can nic salts do for you as a user? Why do vapers love them so much and see them as an appealing alternative to freebase nicotine juice?
Nicotine salts, when formed using a suitable acid and used with the proper device, actually seem to get nicotine to your blood more quickly. This is a major thing for vapers looking to quit smoking. It can help former cigarette smokers more effectively stave off cravings because they won’t have to vape as often in order to get the same amount of nicotine they’re used to.
As mentioned above, nicotine salts create a less acidic vapor. So even though you’re getting more nicotine, it’s less harsh to inhale. Some find this makes vaping more enjoyable.
Nic salts are specifically made for low-wattage, closed systems because you don’t need to consume as much vapor in order to get the same amount of nicotine. In fact, nicotine salts can’t be used in mods or sub-ohms at all. If you like to keep things simple, this can be a plus.
Freebase nicotine affects the liquid’s overall flavor. But with nic salt juice, there’s next to no effect, resulting in a rich, flavorful and more enjoyable vaping experience.
The reasons listed above make nicotine salts a great choice for some. But because nic salts can only be used in vape pens and cig-a-likes, not mods or sub-ohms, some may find nic salts too limiting. For those who prefer more customization options and bigger vape clouds, traditional vape liquid may be a better choice.
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