Cheap vs Expensive E-Liquid: What To Choose?

In 2015, it might be quite difficult to choose new e-liquids to please your taste because there are hundreds of brands and thousands of flavors out there. But that’s only the tip of the iceberg – one also needs to find the perfect VG/PG blend, choose a suitable nicotine strength, as well as evaluate the contents of a particular e-liquid. And there’s one more important thing to consider when purchasing e-liquid – the price. So, things are a bit complicated here, especially for a new vaper.

Why do some e-liquids go for around 2 or 3 bucks per a 10ml bottle, while some companies sell pretty much the same stuff for eye-watering prices up to even $20 and $30? The answer might seem obvious – more expensive e-juices are of higher quality and consist of, say, safer ingredients. However, this is not always true, so let’s try to understand if cheap e-liquid is really not worth it and if you really need to spend top dollar on ‘gourmet’ e-juice.

Is Cheap E-Liquid Safe?

It’s a fact: the majority of inexpensive e-liquids come from China. As there are many stereotypes about Chinese manufacturing practices wandering around, some vapers choose to avoid using e-juices coming from this Eastern country because they worry about the safety of these products. Despite that, though, brands like Dekang, Hangsen and Feellife have become very popular among vapers all over the world. And there’s a reason for that: said manufacturers (and many other as well) actually overturn all myths and provide high quality, tasteful e-juices, and, to silence the doubters, in the case of Hangsen and Feellife, there’s even a thorough list of ingredients printed on the packaging. These brands are also recognized by major organizations in Europe and the US, and, to see for yourself in what facilities are these e-liquids made, check out the video:

When it comes to cheap e-liquids, the real danger actually can come from some Western-made products which are often manufactured in small home laboratories. For example, there are no guarantees that these e-liquids actually contain those 8 milligrams of nicotine per milliliter, as stated on the label – simply because in a small lab, there is much more room for human error than in a fully equipped and certified factory. Also, it is always a great idea not to purchase an e-liquid in a bottle with a handwritten label on it, or in worst case scenario, without any label at all.

To answer the question, a low priced e-liquid certainly doesn’t mean that it is not safe. More than that is needed to evaluate the safety of it – things like unbiased customer feedback in online forums, certifications and official opinions are all useful to make a better picture about a particular e-liquid. If unsure about the origin/contents of an e-liquid, especially when making a purchase online, don’t be afraid to ask a question to the vendor and see what they have to say.

What Are Gourmet Flavors?

If you’re new to vaping, it is a great idea to taste as many vape juice as you possibly can. If you’re on a tight budget, the aforementioned Chinese companies will probably suit all your needs – they offer tens and even hundreds of flavors, various VG/PG ratios, as well as different nicotine strengths. However, there is one thing what many of the budget e-liquid companies do not offer: the so-called gourmet flavors.


Five Pawns – one of the world’s allegedly most expensive e-liquid brands. Source: Five Pawns

The term ‘gourmet flavor’ is usually used to describe a non-ordinary and sophisticated e-liquid blend. While anyone can get some standard flavorings and mix them with PG and VG, gourmet flavors are way above that level. To produce these selected flavors, companies use pharmaceutical-grade ingredients, mix the e-liquids right before shipping them out and even employ ‘mixologists’. All of that considerably raises the cost of the process which, of course, reflects on the final price. But, as vapers already expect a gourmet flavor to be a bit pricey, some companies take the liberty to add some more extra dollars to the already ‘premium’ price tag, resulting in a highly overpriced product which, in fact, is not much better than your average 5 dollar 10ml bottle.

Cheap vs Expensive E-Liquid

When it comes to pros and cons of e-liquids in a certain price category, it is mainly about your personal preference. The price is definitely not the main factor to consider when purchasing your e-juice – some of the most exclusive gourmet products can still be absolutely not suited for your taste while you might find a golden nugget for yourself among the cheapest e-liquid bottles on FastTech.

However, the so-called gourmet e-liquid brands and lines most likely will provide you with a much more exquisite assortment of flavors. For more than $5 per a 10ml bottle, you’ll find ‘coconut caramel infused mix with a faint note of eucalyptus and a silky, woody overtone’ or something similar. You’ll probably be enchanted by those flavors, and you’ll understand that vaping is something much more than inhaling and exhaling your standard tobacco juice – but that certainly doesn’t mean that a simple tobacco blend is bad. And, if you’re into these more sophisticated flavors, the only thing you need to do is find a premium e-juice manufacturer/vendor which doesn’t overprice its products.

To sum it all up, more expensive doesn’t always mean better. However, the happy medium for a vaper who wants to try something new is testing, testing and once again testing. Don’t be afraid of relatively cheap e-liquids and do try some premium juices to find out what suits your taste the best. Also, if you’re using a sub-ohm tank or a rebuildable, e-liquid consumption is another factor to consider, and you might not want to end up spending the same amount of money you once spent on cigarettes on vaping. Be aware of overpriced ‘premium’ products and keep in mind that a new and little-known e-juice brand with a price tag over $1.50 per milliliter might be a bit too much – it is e-liquid after all, not a designer perfume.

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Martin B.

Ex-smoker, passionate vaper who loves to tell the world about the life-changing potential of vaping. Co-creator of Ecigclopedia with a background in Business & Finance. Prefers a dessert flavored vape and loves to innovate.

Martin B.

Ex-smoker, passionate vaper who loves to tell the world about the life-changing potential of vaping. Co-creator of Ecigclopedia with a background in Business & Finance. Prefers a dessert flavored vape and loves to innovate.

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5 Responses

  1. Luv2Vape says:

    Luv2vape is an online retailer or Premium Quality Vaping hardware and premium e-liquid, we offer a wide range of products all with Free standard delivery.

  2. rebecca says:

    For me, cheap or expensive, it depends on your. whether you can accept it or not

  1. April 21, 2016

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    […] Read More here: […]

  2. January 21, 2017

    […] ordering Chinese e-liquids (these are not bad at all, by the way: check out our article about cheap vs expensive e-liquid), you can try to DIY some juice. A relatively large container of nicotine, PG, VG, and flavorings […]

  3. January 21, 2017

    […] We know that E-Liquid flavors are less than E-Liquid brands. Here you can read Cheap vs Expensive E-Liquid: What to Choose? […]

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