What are nicotine salts?

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More and more vapers are becoming curious about nicotine salts, and many have switched over to them entirely. But what are nicotine salts? To understand what they are, we need to compare them to the other, more common form of vapeable nicotine-freebase nicotine.

What is freebase nicotine?

Freebase nicotine has been around since the ’60s, and it’s been the form of nicotine used in e-liquid since the start of vaping. Freebase nicotine is nicotine in its purest form-in fact, cigarette companies have long been using the freebase method to make cigarettes more potent.

“Freebasing” is a technique which converts a compound from its salt form to its base form. This base form of nicotine is much more readily absorbable by the lungs than salt nicotine. Cigarette companies freebase the nicotine by adding ammonia right into the cigarette-usually diammonium phosphate or DAP. This means that cigarettes can be more potent without adding extra nicotine, and as a result, more addictive.

When freebase nicotine is extracted from tobacco, it’s added to a mixture of propylene glycol (PG) and vegetable glycerin (VG). The proportions of those two liquids make a big difference to the finished liquid, but that’s a whole other blog post!

Okay, so that’s freebase nicotine-what’s salt nicotine then?

Salt nicotine is what happens when you add benzoic acid to freebase nicotine (basic=alkaline). It changes the form the nicotine takes, making it less bioavailable, but more importantly, smoother to vape.

Some people love the throat kick of high nicotine juice, but some people find it too harsh. By neutralising the pH of the nicotine, you can ramp up the nicotine content without increasing the throat hit.

We’ve seen people vaping on some truly crazy mgs of salt nicotine out there-45mg, anyone? Our nicotine salts come in at 20mg-stronger than our highest mg freebase nicotine liquids (18mg) but noticeably far smoother.

What sort of vape can I use nicotine salts in?

Because you’re vaping more nicotine, nicotine salts are not recommended for sub ohm or direct to lung devices. You will want to use less powerful mouth to lung devices and tanks with higher resistance coils. Nicotine salts might be smoother, but you don’t want to be inhaling huge clouds of them! Try them in the Joyetech Teros or any other lower wattage device for optimum results.

Do Nicotine salts taste salty?

Not at all! Some people think that nicotine salts means the vapor will have a salty flavour, but it actually refers to the chemical form that the nicotine takes. In fact, salt nicotine has less impact on the flavour contained in the liquid, meaning the flavour in the liquid is more pronounced.

We stock a wide range of tasty nicotine salts including Element, Dr Frost and our own range of Nicofresh nicotine salts. If you’re looking for a smoother vape, or more of a nicotine kick, why not give them a try?

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