DIY vape devices are very dangerous for novices, so it is best to avoid them altogether
DIY vape liquid also carries some risks that you should be aware of before attempting
Be aware of allergies and potential property damage from handling chemicals in your home
Be Aware of ensuring nicotine doses are accurate and mixtures are chemically stable
Always do your homework and be safe
DIY Vaping has been around since the early days of the industry, and is still popular today. With that said, the desire for many vapers to brew there own vape liquid has diminished in the face of a market stuffed-full of products that target almost every niche in modern vaping.
There is also the device side of DIY vaping, which sees many people building their own coils in special devices called RDTAs. This is a particularly dangerous activity for novices, and so we do not recommend it at all – instead we will focus on DIY e-liquid below.
If you are still considering having a go at mixing your own vape liquid then there are some important things to remember before you get started – it’s not always a simple process and carries some risks too, so explore the guide below before you start browsing for ingredients!
The Dangers of DIY Vape Liquid
Before you think about mixing a vape liquid at home there are some risks to be aware of:
While here in the UK we are bound by tight regulations designed to minimise the content of certain ingredients, in order to achieve certain flavour profiles some allergens may be present.
When buying an e-liquid from a reputable retailer, they are legally required to list any potential allergen in the ingredients list on the packaging – this is not always going to be so easy to spot if working with a flavouring you bought online for a home-brew.
It will be difficult when working at home to not get these ingredients on your skin, which can cause dermatitis and other reactions to flare up. Even the neutral compounds PG and VG can cause problems if you come into regular contact with them depending on the allergies you have.
If you insist on being a DIY vaper, then we must stress how vital it is to only buy flavourings and other chemicals from well-known retailers with full safety credentials and who can provide you with a full breakdown of every chemical ingredient so you can cross-check this against any known issues you may have.
As not all allergies may be known to you, it is still safer to avoid mixing at home altogether. From Elite to our Best Sellers, all of our products give you all the safety info you need to vape with confidence.
Property Damage & Foreign Bodies
When mixing an e-liquid you will be transferring a lot of liquid between different containers, and without a proper clean environment this can create plenty of opportunity for contaminants to get into the mix.
From fluff to nastier things like insects, without the air filters and hygiene presented by the likes of our EDGE clean mixing area, your kitchen or living room cannot offer the same security.
Equally, this same transferring of liquid ingredients can also open you up to the risk of spills. While it might not sound like a major issue, consider the impact of spilling a highly concentrated flavouring onto soft furniture, clothes or worse – even if you manage to get the greasy stain out, you will likely be left with a cushion or patch of carpet that smells of aniseed, tobacco, or worse - nicotine for a very long time.
Nicotine Dose Accuracy
This is one of the riskiest factors in DIY vape juice crafting. If you are aiming for a 12mg strength juice, you will be reliant on two things to make sure it’s accurate: your own maths, and the accuracy of the nicotine provider.
If either of these two things are off, then you will be consuming a product that you simply do not know the strength of, at least not accurately. If you are vaping to manage cravings or two keep away from cigarettes, then this can be very detrimental to your success.
You may end up consuming less nicotine than you need/intended, or worse, be vaping a higher strength than you think, effectively worsening your nicotine addiction – a big issue for those on a quitting journey.
Products like those in the EDGE Core range and indeed all of our products are tested in multiple ways to ensure accuracy – the raw nicotine is tested before being blended so we can guarantee the manufacturers information, full batches are tested to ensure they are accurate after mixing, and bottles are retained from those batches so we can make sure the product stays accurate through its shelf life.
This is one of the most likely issues you will encounter when experimenting with mixing vape liquid. Without a significant knowledge of the science behind mixtures and the ingredients in them, you will find it very hard to tell if the next thing you add will run the mixture.
EDGE vape liquids are homogenised to make the mixtures more stable, and we have years of experience in combining different flavours to create the blends our customers love – which sadly requires equipment you aren’t likely to find practical at home!
VG is often the culprit, being a worse carrier agent than it’s cousin PG, as it doesn’t get on well with certain flavour concentrates. This is because it is very similar to water except for it’s thickness, and many flavourings in vapes are oil-based. As many people know, oil and water doesn’t mix very well in many circumstances.
Due to the potential reaction between VG and certain flavourings, you home-brew could become very cloudy, or separate entirely so you can see little oil bubbles and even layers forming as the components don’t mix properly.
This results in a mixture that might taste ok to begin with but won’t steep well causing unknown changes to the flavour profile and even the nicotine dose over time – because we use freebase nicotine in most blends, it can sink or float around in the mixture at random if it splits. This means that the liquid could be far stronger at the start of the bottle than at the end, making it a very odd experience.
Do Your Homework
We recommend that you only buy e-liquid which have been professionally produced, in-line with strict safety measures and quality controls, by a trusted brand or retailer.
If, however you are set on DIY vaping, then we must advise that you carefully research the processes involved and the ingredients you want to use. You can learn more about e-liquid ingredients here, or head over to our New to Vaping area to start learning, or check out our blog for even more information on a range of vaping topics.
With over 6 years within the vaping industry, Ian has amassed a wealth of knowledge. Extending beyond e-liquids and devices, Ian understands every aspect of the vaping world, from safety and compliance to best practice and the law, to name but a few.