Have you ever had a brilliant idea for an amazing vape flavor? I mean who wouldn’t want to vape a blackberry-pineapple-white chocolate-cake flavor? Okay, so maybe that’s a bit much, but don't give up! There’s a whole world of creative flavors to be made, and they’re waiting for you in DIY (Do It Yourself)!
Before we start diving into the details, we need to talk about what exactly is DIY? To put it very simply, it is creating recipes, and then mixing those recipes up to make your very own e-juice. Whether it’s making a flavor that you can’t seem to find anywhere, making your favorite flavor in bulk, or just a hobby, DIY is a chance to bring your e-juice ideas to life.
Sound fun? Of course it does! Now that you've decided to give DIY a try, you're probably wondering what you need to get started.
What You Need:
Vegetable Glycerin (VG) – 99.7% pure Kosher Vegetable Glycerin, we use USP grade vegetable glycerin to promote safety and quality.
Propylene Glycol (PG) – VapeWild uses USP grade (United States Pharmacopoeia) propylene glycol. This item is optional. If you have a PG allergy, or just prefer high VG liquid you can forego this part.
Nicotine – We use 99.87% USP grade nicotine suspended in 99.7% USP Kosher VG at 100mg per milliliter. This item is optional, too. Some people prefer their juice nicotine free!
Flavoring – What you’ll mix to create new, fantastic flavors. Make sure to get a good range! We suggest researching some recipes that you are interested in, and buy your flavors accordingly. That way you don’t end up missing one crucial ingredient that could make or break a great recipe! Note that all of our flavors are PG based, as this will affect your ratios of PG/VG when mixing.
Sweetener – This item is also optional, it helps to round out flavors that may feel like they’re missing just a little something.
Tools for measuring/moving – Depending on if you’ll be mixing by volume or weight, you’ll need syringes, funnels and other tools to measure. But don’t worry, we’ve got you covered!
Protective Gear – You’ll want to keep your hands covered with gloves, and it’s a good idea to wear long sleeves as well as goggles and an apron to protect yourself from any contact with nicotine.
Notebook – Take lots and lots of notes! You’ll be able to use them to recreate recipes you’ve already made, come up with ideas for new recipes, and also it comes in handy when tweaking recipes that need some work.
Now that you’ve got your supplies that you need, it’s time to set up a work space for your mixing endeavors. Make sure to find an area that is away from children, pets and food. Invest in a trashcan, paper towels and a spray bottle of isopropyl alcohol for any spills that might happen. Once you’re all set up, it’s time to start your mixing!
If this is your first time making a batch of juice, then we have a few tips that will help you out in the long run, and save you time, money and a lot of frustration!
Research, research, and oh wait did we mention it, research! It may seem like a simple concept when you want to create a flavor, but some are more complex than you think.
There are a lot of great e-liquid recipe sites that are very helpful in regards to calculating the percentages in your recipes, and they're a great place to find and share new recipes. These are great places to visit BEFORE you purchase your flavorings to get an idea of what you need to create that mix that you’ve dreamed up.
Now that you’ve gotten an idea of what you want to make, you’ll need to start playing with the percentage of flavoring that you want to use in your e-juice. Recipes can range anywhere from 1% to 36% flavoring due to the fact that different flavors will need varying amounts to really come through in the mix. Basically, some flavors are stronger than others.
One factor in choosing your starting percentage is the type of flavor you are going for. If you are aiming to mix a single flavor, we suggest starting at 10% flavoring and testing it to see if more is needed since flavoring can always be added, but can’t be taken out!
If you’re mixing with very strong flavors such as cinnamon and menthol, start a low percentage from 1% - 5% as these are intense and can very easily be overdone.
If you’re looking to make a more complex recipe with different flavor aspects, a good starting point is 15%. This gives you room to include all of your ingredients, and tweak it from there!
You’ll also need to convert your percentages to milliliters (ml), so this is where that e-liquid calculator really comes in handy.
We suggest working with smaller volume when starting out, that way you don’t waste a lot if it needs to be dumped (it happens, some things just don’t work out! So if it does, don't get discouraged). Also, make sure to label the bottles with what you made, and the date that you made it so that you can keep track of your adventures.
Now that you’ve got your measurements prepared, it’s time to do the dirty work! There’s no real particular order that you need to mix in, but we do suggest starting with the smaller volumes, like nicotine and flavoring, to allow room for any additions that need to be made.
Use a syringe to transfer your nicotine to the bottle, then add your flavoring using separate syringes, or pipettes. This is where sweetener would come in if you choose to use it. Sweetener is not a necessary component to e-juice, but it can help round out certain flavors if they seem to be lacking. But heads up, don’t overdo it! Using more than 1% sweetener can cause some serious damage to your coils.
Now that you’ve got your base mixed, you’ll want to add the PG/VG. You can simplify this process by mixing your VG/PG beforehand, but if not we have a chart for that, too.
Once everything is in the bottle, give it a good shake and a small taste, making sure to take notes on the flavor right away. At this point, it’s time to play the waiting game. Set your creation away for a couple weeks, no matter how tempting it is, and come back to shake the bottles at least once a day. Once the steeping process is complete, try it out! Take note of how it has changed through steeping, comparing it to how it tasted when you made it, and decide if anything seems to be missing, or lacking.
That's it! You've made your first DIY, and before you know it, you’ll be mixing like a pro!
Just remember, if things don't go right, DON'T GIVE UP! Mistakes happen, and this is definitely one of those situations where you learn from them. That’s exactly what that handy, dandy notebook is for! While it might not be the exact flavor you had been aiming for, you might come across a happy accident and you don’t want to forget how you made it because you didn’t write it down.
We've done our best to help start your DIY adventure, but if you feel like we missed anything, be sure to join our Facebook DIY E-juice group! It’s a great community that is always there to help answer questions. Stay wild, and mix on!
Posted by Marissa on Jun 20th 2017