DIY is an adventure quickly growing in popularity throughout the vaping community, and is a fun learning experience for anyone willing to give it a try. We sat down with our experts in R&D to gain some knowledge on common questions asked within the DIY community, and came up with a FAQ to help both our beginning and advanced mixers.
Q: What do I need to start making my own e-juice?
A: You’ll first need a clean, stable work surface out of reach of children, pets and food. For your mixing station, you’ll need paper towels, water or isopropyl alcohol for spills (spray bottles help!), and a trash can for waste. For mixing, you’ll need gloves, empty bottles, nipples, child resistant caps, syringes, and, if you want to mix large batches, transfer pipettes, beakers or graduated cylinders. If you’re mixing by weight, you may want to consider investing in a pocket scale. You’ll need flavoring and sweetener (if you so choose), and depending on your preferred blend, you can either use our pre-blended nicotine, or PG, VG, and 100mg nicotine solution (Nic100). If you only vape max VG, you do not need any additional PG. VapeWild sells all of these things individually, in an Advanced Kit, or in a simple DIY Blend & Flavor Kit.
Q: What is the best way to store your products, short term and long term?
A: While there are lots of methods for storing your e-liquid to steep, one of the easiest is to keep your e-liquid in a cool, dark place out of the reach of children and pets while shaking periodically.
For long-term storage of Nic100, nicotine containing solutions, flavoring or e-liquid that you don’t want to steep, we recommend storage in a refrigerator or freezer out of the reach of children, pets, and food, in container with a child resistant cap. It’s also a good idea to keep your bottles in a locking freezer bag to reduce the risk of cross-contamination. Just give your e-liquid or Nic100 30 minutes or enough time to come to room temperature before using.
Q: What is the difference between the Flavor Boosts and Flavor Concentrates?
A: Flavor Boosts are concentrated flavor only versions of our VapeWild e-liquid, and can be used to add extra flavoring to a pre-existing e-liquid or to make complex custom mixes. Our Flavor concentrates are blends of concentrated flavoring specially formulated to make mixing easier for beginners, and are best used in conjunction with other DIY Flavor Concentrates or Boosts to achieve a more complex, balanced flavor profile.
Q: What is the difference between your regular Flavor Concentrates and your Deluxe Flavor Concentrates?
A: Our regular Flavor Concentrates are simple, less complex blends. Many of them work well as a single flavor e-juice without needing a complicated recipe, but can be enhanced with other flavorings. Our Deluxe Flavor Concentrates are complex blends for more advanced DIYers. Some of them (like The Cerealizer) are not meant to be used on their own, and are best used at low percentages to enhance other flavorings.
Q: What is sweetener, and do I need it?
A: We use a proprietary sweetener suspended in Propylene Glycol. Sweetener is not required, but in addition to adding a touch of sweetness, it helps to “round out” a flavor. We do not recommend adding over 1% of sweetener, as it can shorten the life of your coils.
Q: Is it necessary to wear protective gear when mixing? What are some of the consequences of not using it?
A: While fatal nicotine poisoning is rare, it is always important exercise caution when handling nicotine solution. We recommend proper Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) including, at the minimum, gloves. Be aware of what you touch with contaminated gloves! It may also be a good idea to consider goggles to protect your eyes from any splash back, and an apron or smock to protect your clothing.
Nicotine can be absorbed through inhalation, ingestion or topically. Nicotine is a dangerous substance, especially in its concentrated form, but it you follow proper safety precautions, you can responsibly handle Nic100 in your own home.
The flavorings we use are highly- concentrated, and not meant to be ingested in their undiluted form, or handled without proper PPE. Our flavor Concentrates and Boosts, if mishandled, can cause contact dermatitis or stomach upset.
If skin contact with concentrated flavoring or nicotine solution occurs, remove any contaminated clothing and wash the affected area with soap and water for at least 15 minutes. If concentrated flavoring or nicotine solution makes contact with eyes or nasal mucous membranes, flush the affected area with water for at least 15 minutes. If ingested or vaporized in their undiluted form, please contact the American Association of Poison Control Centers at (800) 222-1222, or the poison control center for your country or region.
Q: Does it matter what order I mix my e-juice in?
A: While the exact order doesn’t really matter, it helps to mix your largest component last as it takes up the most room in your recipe, so you still have the opportunity to make quick adjustments if necessary. Whatever order you choose to mix in, stay consistent and keep notes! If you mix nicotine first, always mix your nicotine first, etc.
Q: What’s the best way to measure out the flavor?
A: Our 15-gauge needle syringes are the perfect size to fit in our 10ml and 30ml bottles. The syringes come in 3ml, 5ml, and 10ml, so it’s easy to measure small amounts for single bottles. For larger batches, we also sell transfer pipettes, beakers and graduated cylinders, which work well for PG and VG. Drops work well for measuring small amounts and experimenting, just make sure that you use the same tool (VW bottle nipples, syringe, needletip bottle, etc;) to keep your drop sizes consistent.
Q: Weight Measuring vs. Volumetric Measuring?
A: While volumetric measurements can be marginally less accurate than weight measurements, it can be an easy option for beginning DIYers to create complex recipes. For more accurate measurements, we recommend blunt-tip syringes over transfer pipettes. For drop-based measuring, the nipple tips on our 10ml and 30ml bottles dispense approximately 40 drops per ml. While drop-based measurement is an acceptable option for some DIYers, and can make measuring very small quantities easier, it is considered to be the least accurate method of measurement, so we do not recommend measuring Nic100 by drops.
However you choose to measure your e-liquid, It’s a good idea to convert your recipes to percentages, because it makes it easy to scale up to larger sizes or to share your recipes with others.
Q: What is the standard percentage for mixing, and what happens when you add more or less?
A: While there is no rigid standard for flavor percentages, most DIY recipes fall somewhere between 10%-20% total. Some flavor concentrates, like cinnamon, menthol, or citrus, are much stronger than others and are best used at a starting percentage of 2%-3%.
So, if there’s no standard, how do you know if your percentages are right? If your flavor is too weak, there’s a good chance your recipe is too low, but keep in mind that for very strong concentrates, less is more. If your flavor has a bitter chemical taste, there’s a good chance your flavor percentage is too high. You can try scaling your entire recipe down, lowering or eliminating certain components. Always remember, you can add, but you can’t take away!
We know we probably didn't answer every questions you might have about DIY, but don't worry, we're here to help! If you need further assistance, or just want to participate in discussion and sharing recipes, our VapeWild DIY group on Facebook is a great place to be. Good luck and happy mixing!
Posted by Marissa on May 4th 2017