More and more people are using vaping to quit smoking, with more than 50,000 smokers estimated to have stopped smoking using vapes in 2017 alone. There is evidence that vaping is better than nicotine replacement therapy for helping individuals kick their smoking habits.
But we're not here today to tell you about all the wonderful benefits of vaping. Instead, we've put together this guide to help heavy smokers who are considering buying a vape kit to help them quit smoking.
Because everyone is different, we've included a few different types of vape kits to ensure that everyone can find the best vape to help them quit smoking. Read on to learn what heavy smokers should look out for when choosing your first vape.
Best vapes for ease of use
If you're looking for the simplest and easiest way to quit smoking using vaping, disposable vapes are the obvious choice. These easy-to-use e-cigarettes can be used straight out of the box because they're pre-charged and pre-filled with e-liquid ready for you to start vaping. Once the battery and e-liquid runs out, just dispose of your disposable vape (your vape's packaging should tell you how to recycle or return the device) and start using a new one.
Which disposable vape should you start with? There's a huge selection of options on the market, but here are just a few of our favourites.
One of the best disposable vapes available today, the Lost Mary is a tiny and pocket-friendly disposable pod kit available in a wide range of flavours from Cotton Candy Ice to Triple Mango. Each disposable e-cigarette is filled with 2ml of 20mg nic salt, making it a perfect high strength for heavy smokers who need their nicotine fix. Other features include the auto-draw activation and the 550mAh battery which allows Lost Mary vapes to last up to 600 puffs.
Elf Bar 600
A classic disposable e-cigarette, the Elf Bar 600 is a small cylindrical vape that is the perfect cigarette-style replacement for ex-smokers. Available in a vast selection of flavours, this draw-activated vape contains 20mg nicotine strength and lasts up to 600 puffs.
SKE Crystal Bar
Another of our favourites, the SKE Crystal Bar is a stylish and versatile vape with 30 excellent flavours that vapers love. Powered by a 500mAh battery, these e-cigarettes provide up to 600 puffs of the 20mg nicotine strength e-liquid. This vape pen style disposable is also inhale-activated so there's no need to fiddle around with buttons -- just put it to your mouth and start vaping.
Best vape starter kits
Disposable e-cigarettes don't appeal to everyone. The cost and the environmental impact of throwing away your vape every time it runs out makes them far from ideal as a permanent solution. Moreover, disposable e-cigs don't offer the premium vaping experience that a real vape kit can provide.
If you're looking for a starter kit that will introduce you to the exciting possibilities of vaping, here are some of our favourites that are perfect for former heavy smokers.
Innokin Endura T18 II Starter Kit
If you're interested in a vape pen that is as easy to use as it is functional and impressive, the Innokin Endura T18 II vape pen will definitely appeal. This budget-friendly vape from Innokin is a great starter kit because it's simple and easy to operate while still providing some fun features to allow you to customise your vaping such as the three output wattages and adjustable airflow. It even has a battery life indicator which lets you know how long you can use it for before it needs to be charged.
Uwell Caliburn Pod Kit
Another discreet and easy-to-use vape starter kit is the Uwell Caliburn pod kit. This e-cig from Uwell is small and effective, perfect for slipping into a pocket for vaping on the go. It uses refillable pods so you can easily top up the vape juice whenever necessary and has an LED battery life indicator so you know when to charge the 520mAh built-in battery.
Best vapes for performance
If you want to go a step further and pick a vape kit that will provide amazing performance, we have some great recommendations for you. The following starter kits and intermediate kits are still beginner-friendly enough for vaping newbies but also demonstrate some of the more advanced features that can show you the best of what vaping has to offer.
Voopoo Drag X 80W Pod Mod Kit
The Voopoo Drag X 80 pod mod kit is a powerful pod kit that offers variable wattage from 5W all the way up to 80W, allowing you to use coils with a range of resistances between 0.1 and 3.0 ohm so you can have a taste of sub-ohm vaping. Voopoo have created some of the best vape kits on the market and this pod kit is no exception, offering an infinite airflow control system and a GENE.TT chipset for powerful functionality. Making use of mess-free refillable pods, this pod kit has a lot of impressive features for a vape kit that is so affordable and easy to use.
OXVA Origin 2 Pod Kit
Another pod kit that provides impressive performance while still being accessible to new vapers is the OXVA Origin 2 Pod Kit. This vape kit has an output of 5W to 80W, allowing you to enjoy more powerful vaping. Plus, it's relatively small and compact so it won't take up much more room than a packet of cigarettes in your pocket. Perhaps most importantly, this OXVA vape kit features 2A rapid charging, which means that there is very little downtime and you don't have to worry about your device being out of commission when you start craving a smoke.
Choosing the right nicotine strength
If you're a heavy smoker looking to quit cigarettes forever with the help of your vape, it's essential that you pick an e-liquid with the right nicotine strength.
Former smokers have two options when swapping their cigarettes for e-cigarettes. One option is to quit nicotine cold turkey, opting only for nicotine-free vape juice. When you start craving a smoke, you can instead use your vape kit to distract yourself from the habit. While this option works for some people, we don't always recommend it because the intense nicotine cravings often lead to smokers swapping back to their cigarettes.
The second and often more successful option is choosing an e-liquid with a nicotine strength that will satisfy those cravings and help you quit smoking for good. By initially opting for a high nicotine strength, you can gradually reduce the strength until you are vaping low-nicotine or nicotine-free e-juice.
In this case, it's essential that you pick an e-liquid with a high enough nicotine to beat those cravings and discourage you from picking up a cigarette. For heavy smokers, this nicotine level is likely to be quite high. Here's a run-down of the different nicotine options:
- 20mg: this is the highest nicotine strength permitted to be sold in the UK and EU under TPD regulations. It is a high nicotine strength that is suited only to very heavy smokers who are used to smoking more than a pack of cigarettes a day.
- 18mg: another high nicotine strength, some heavy smokers may opt for this strength and only upgrade to 20mg if they feel that 18mg is not sufficient to beat the cravings
- 12mg: a medium-high nicotine strength suited to smokers who get through around a pack a day.
- 6mg: a medium-low strength perfect for smokers who get through around 5-10 cigarettes a day.
- 3mg: this low nicotine strength is ideal for smokers who use less than five cigarettes a day.
- 0mg: nicotine-free e-liquid is suitable for anyone who has never been a smoker or has reduced their nicotine consumption over time
Heavy smokers usually opt for 12mg, 18mg, or 20mg nicotine e-liquids.
Choosing the right nicotine type
Freebase nicotine contains the same form of nicotine as cigarettes. To make the nicotine found in the tobacco plant easier for our bodies to absorb, ammonia is added to the nicotine to 'freebase' it. This type of nicotine provides the hearty throat hit that heavy smokers are used to.
Nic salts are e-liquids with a different formulation of nicotine. Instead of adding ammonia, the naturally-occurring nicotine is mixed with benzoic acid to change the pH level. As a result, the nicotine content in nic salts can be rapidly absorbed into the body in as little as six seconds. Moreover, the altered pH level means that nic salts provide a less harsh throat hit, making them more comfortable for vaping frequently.
Although heavy smokers may initially feel more comfortable with freebase nicotine, we highly recommend trying out nic salts. This is because the fast-acting nicotine can help you kill cravings more quickly and the smooth vaping experience means a more comfortable transition.
Trying to quit smoking can be a real challenge, so it's important to give yourself the best chance by using e-cigarettes that are suited to you. We hope that this guide to choosing your first vape as a heavy smoker has helped you get started on your vaping journey.
You might also be interested in some of our other blogs aimed at current smokers:
- Is vaping cheaper than smoking?
- Why do people choose vaping over smoking?
- 'Vaping is far less harmful than smoking' says Cancer Research UK
To find the perfect vape kit that will help you quit smoking forever, browse our full range of starter kits today.