Throat hit can be good or bad depending on your preference
There are lots of ways to increase or decrease throat hit to meet your needs
Tweaking your device, e-liquid, flavour and nic strength all have an impact so take note to combine the right elements
For someone who has never smoked or vaped, the idea of a throat hit might seem a little confusing, people seem to seek it out but at the same time others are against it. As an ex-smoker, aside form those who preferred menthol options, throat hit is a big part of the experience we become addicted to.
That hot hit right to the back of the throat when inhaling tobacco smoke is literally the heat damaging us as we inhale the smoke to get the nicotine we are craving, however that sensation becomes a big part of the habitual behaviour we practice when smoking.
The fact that vaping replicates the hand-to-mouth action of smoking a cigarette is one of the reasons it has become so popular as an alternative. It makes sense then, that part of the vaping experience should incorporate throat hit too.
In this guide we will explore what throat hits mean in vaping terms, and the products to aim for if you desire a particular level of ‘hit’.
Throat Hit In Cigarettes
The concept of a throat hit is actually much older than vaping itself. IN the 1950’s filtered cigarettes began to become a staple vs previously unfiltered examples. The addition of a filter reduced the impact the smoke had when inhaled, reducing the amount of nicotine delivered. This led to some people complaining that their favourite smoke was no longer as satisfying.
As a result, manufacturers began adding ammonia to the tobacco used in cigarettes. This process was called freebasing – and is part of the reason the nicotine we use when making typical 50-50 e-liquids is called ‘freebase’.
Due to the very alkali pH of ammonia, it gave the tobacco a more impactful taste, with the added benefit of helping the nicotine absorb faster into a smoker’s body – delivering double the satisfaction both in terms of hit and craving suppression.
Throat Hit In Vaping
Throat hit in vaping terms is very similar to the concept in a cigarette – it’s about recreating a visceral satisfaction that comes from a dopamine release triggered when we inhale the hot smoke of a cigarette. After making the switch this comes from the nicotine used in the manufacturing of a vape liquid.
E-cigarette vapour is not as hot as cigarette smoke, and according to Public Health England contains around 95% fewer harmful ingredients and carcinogens. In order to replicate that intense hit, higher nicotine strength ‘freebase’ 50-50 vape juices such as 12mg or 18mg are sought after, particularly by those who maintained a heavier smoking habit prior to switching.
The type of e-liquid and device you choose can impact the throat hit you will get, as well as other factors like flavour, not to mention your personal preferences – if you were a heavy smoker, a throat hit that may seem normal to you could be unbearable to someone who only smoked one or two cigarettes.
How to Get More Throat Hit When Vaping
If you crave that intense hit, there are a few things you can do to increase the throat hit of your vaping experience:
Choose A Higher Nicotine Strength
Freebase 50-50 vape liquids are naturally alkali in taste, just like the old-school tobacco we mentioned above. Opting for an e-liquid that contains more of this will increase the level of throat hit you get.
Choose 18mg, 12mg, and even 6mg – taking care to not overdo your nicotine consumption; even when chasing a throat hit you should only vape to your needs, otherwise you risk worsening your nicotine addiction by proxy.
Choose Higher PG E-Liquids
50-50 PG-VG ratio liquids such as those in our core range or even those that contain more PG, will have a harsher hit when vaped. VG is responsible for producing bigger clouds, but also soften the hit of the vapour when inhaled, so having less of this in the recipe will help increase the hit you receive.
You can find out more about PG, VG and other e-liquid ingredients here.
Modify Your Airflow
If you are using a device like the EDGE Pro which has variable airflow, reducing this airflow can tighten the draw when inhaling, and increase the throat hit – making the experience closer to that of drawing through a filter.
Equally, if you are using a harsher juice in both flavour and mg strength, opening up the airflow to allow more of it in at once can also make for a harsher hit, just be cautious as this approach can cause coughing.
Combining variable airflow with a high freebase nicotine strength will almost always satisfy those seeking a harsher hit.
Increase Device Power
Some devices have adjustable power settings, if you have one of these then you are in luck. Cranking up the watts can help increase the intensity of a hit, giving more of that visceral satisfaction.
At EDGE we have tailored our ranges to deliver different throat hits while keeping the flavour consistent regardless of your chosen strength, however things do differ between profiles.
Certain flavours like lemon, berry, and tobacco profiles can often offer harsher throat hits than menthols or cakes and desserts which tend to be much sweeter, masking the intensity of the hit.
Experiment to find a flavour that you not only enjoy for its taste but also its throat hit.
How to Get Less Throat Hit When Vaping
Just as it is for those seeking more throat hit, there are plenty of ways to avoid it as well. If you are a vaper who prefers their nicotine without the harshness of its naturally alkali taste, or just enjoys flavour without the hit getting in the way, follow these tips:
Choose a lower nicotine strength
Opting for a 3mg or 6mg even in freebase will result in a much smoother vaping experience – this is why most HVG juices do not come in strengths higher than this.
Of course, you must ensure you are still getting enough nicotine to satisfy your cravings, otherwise you may end up vaping more regularly than you want.
If you want a higher nic strength, but hat throat hit, nic salts are a great option. Especially for recent ex-smokers.
These juices use modified nicotine which has a neutralised pH – removing its natural harshness of taste. In addition, the nicotine absorbs into your body much faster, granting faster acting craving satisfaction than freebase juices.
Consider High-Vg E-Liquids
As mentioned above, higher VG vape liquid is smoother, despite producing more clouds. This is partly because they typically come in lower nicotine strengths of 3 or 6mg.
If your device has variable wattage, simply decrease this to the lower end of your coil’s pre-set operating range (written on the coil in most cases).
Doing this will reduce the heat at which the e-liquid is vapourised, and also reduce the vapour produced which can help soften throat hit.
Some devices like the EDGE GO are already lower in power output, so it may be easier to choose something like this.
Choose Milder Flavours
Opting for menthol or similar softer profiles will reduce the impact on your throat – of course this can largely be down to personal taste, so don’t be afraid to experiment to find what works!
Our resident vaping expert with nearly a decade of industry experience. From working on the shop floor, bottling, picking and packing vaping products for customers, to designing and formulating e-liquids in the lab, there isn't much about vaping that Ollie doesn't know. His expertise, knowledge and insight into the industry make Ollie the go-to for reliable and trustworthy industry info.
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