Vaping Glossary

Struggling to understand the difference between a vaporiser and an e-cig? Unsure if e-smoke differs from clouds? Wonder no longer as we have the ultimate vaping glossary that puts you in the know.

Airflow – the amount of air sucked into a tank or atomiser. Looser airflow means more clouds, which a tighter airflow means more flavour.

All day vape – this is used to describe your favourite vaping juice. For example, if you love a menthol flavour vape, this is your “all day vape”!

Automatic shutoff – a safety feature that you should expect to find on all high-quality e-cigs. If the unit detects the battery beginning to overheat, it will shut down automatically.

BCC – is a bottom coil clearomiser and is when the heating element is at the bottom of the tank.

BDC – a bottom dual clearomiser uses two coils at the bottom of the tank. Some users say they don't notice a difference other than less dry hits (see the ‘d’ section below) with the BDC version (it’s all to do with heat and wattage!).

Blank – a blank is an empty cartomizer or cartridge. Essentially, you would fill this with your own choice of vaping juice.

Clearomiser – this is a section of your e-cigarette where your vaping juice is stored and converted into vapour. A clearomiser can be made of plastic or glass.

Clouds – these are those delightful puffs of ‘smoke’ that you exhale. Depending on your e-cig set up, you can either create magical, huge clouds or you can be super-discrete with hardly a trace.

Coil – this is the heating element if you like of your e-cig that heats and vaporisers your vaping liquid.

Draw – this is the act of inhaling vapour into your mouth, much as is done with a traditional cigarette.

Dry burn – this means firing your atomiser whilst it's empty. Without any vaping juice in it, the coil glows red. People sometimes do this to burn off any dried on vaping juice residue.

Dry hit – this means drawing off your e-cigarette without any vaping juice in it. It’s not usually recommended, although it can happen for a variety of reasons. A dry hit can be the result of the coil burning the liquid too quickly leaving you with a mouthful of hot air or worse, the smoke from the gunk being roasted on the coil…

E-juice – also known as e-liquid and vaping juice, this is the solution used to give off vapour. It comes in a range of flavours, with and without nicotine, and in a range of nicotine strengths. It can be made from vegetable glycerine (VG) or propylene glycol (PG).

E-smoke – another name for the act of vaping or using an e-cigarette.

Flooding – this happens when the atomiser if overfilled. As well as gurgling noises, you won’t be getting the vapour production either.

Glassomiser – a clearomiser made from glass as opposed to plastic. Some people prefer glass as it doesn’t soak in flavours or build up with too much grime, giving a better overall vaping experience.

Kick – a term used to describe a throat hit. Some people like a big flavour hit, similar to that with smoking cigarettes. Others want a far mellower and smoother throat hit.

Leaking – this is when you vaping juice leaks out of the tank, atomiser or cartomizer. It can damage your piece, more so if the liquid drips onto your battery.

LED – light-emitting diodes (LEDs) are small lights used on some e-cigarettes to simulate the glow of a cigarette. It is also used on some vapes to warn of low battery.

Lithium-ion batteries – of all the battery types, this is probably the best. High-quality, they can be recharged several times before they need replacing. They come in different shapes, sizes and capacities. Arguably the most important part of your e-cig, the better the battery and faster the charge, the more vaping you’ll be able to enjoy.

Low resistance - low resistance is measured in an ohm rating. The lower the rating, the more vapour you’ll produce – those big clouds you are chasing! – but be warned, it sucks the life out of your battery. A low resistance ohm rating of 1.5 or less is perfect for clouds.

vaping glossary letter M

Manual – you press a button to get your e-cig going and…

Manual shut off - … you press a button to switch off your e-cig. This, you may think, should be fairly evident but when you have a misfire building or you don’t want a quick battery discharge, being able to switch off your e-cig manually is a bonus.

Mg – refers to the nicotine strength in a vaping juice. It refers to milligram strength per millilitre. So for a vaping juice containing 6mg of nicotine, it means there are 6mg of nicotine per ml or 0.8%.

Mini – want a stealthier piece of kit so you can vape discreetly as you go about your day? Look for an e-cig that is described as mini and you’ll vaping without anyone knowing.

Mod – short for modifications, you’ll see this word used a lot in product descriptions and articles relating to vaping. Modifications usually mean changes in the battery (i.e. a bigger one) so that vapour production lasts longer. However, this comes at the expense of size and portability. If you get into building your own optimal vaping experience as many hobbyist vapers do, then you’ll be entering into the world of modifications.

Mouth to lung hit – this is the traditional means of smoking a cigarette and is also known as a French inhale. When you vape, you take vapour into the mouth and then the lungs. You get more flavour this way but less vapour. That said, vaping is all about enjoyment, and making it your own personal experience.

Nic juice – an e-juice that contains nicotine

Noob – a newbie vaper!

Pass through – this is where you can charge your e-cigarette but vape at the same time. Unless a piece of kit specifically describes it as a pass-through device, it is dangerous to vape and charge at the same time.

Propylene Glycol – it's what your ejuice is made from.  PG is thinner than VG and delivers a cigarette replicating throat hit.  High PG eliquids use lower powered devices and produce less vapour than high VG eliquids.

Sweet spot – tailoring the vaping experience to your enjoyment is the key to successful vaping. And when you get it just right, you hit your sweet spot. It could be discovering a new flavour to getting the right nicotine level in your vaping juice – in other words, it’s whatever hits the mark.

Vapers tongue – this is when you taste buds are overloaded with the same flavour of vaping juice. It can lead to a slight tickling sensation on the tongue too, common after a long vaping session. Try changing your vaping juice flavour to switch things up a bit.

Vaporiser – another term for an e-cigarette.

Vegetable Glycerin (VG) – it's what's in your eliquid.  VG is thicker than PG and needs a higher power from your device.  Irt's great for big clouds of vapour and these bigger clouds can carry more flavour and more nicotine. 

Watts – one of the measures of power from your Mod batteries. The greater the wattage the more powerful your device.  Keep the VG high for higher powered devices.

Wick – the cotton-like material that absorbs the e liquid.  The wick passes through the coil heating element and vapourises the eliquid.  Wicks and coils need to be replaced regularly. 

Zero Nicotine – vapers don't just vape for the nicotine, some vape for the variety of eliquid flavours.  If you're one of these you'll be looking for a zero nic option.

There are many more glossary terms relating to vaping but these are a great start for anyone new to vaping. Browsing the flavours of e-juice can be daunting when you see so many different descriptions or deciphering the jargon when it comes to buying a vaporiser. But no more, because you have all the basic information you need. Enjoy your vaping experience!