Nicotine Salts – Everything you need to know!

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Nicotine Salts have fast become the most popular choice of e-liquid amongst frequent vapers within the vaping community. More companies than ever are now producing Nicotine Salt e-liquid in various different flavours and strengths to essentially try and cater for everyone’s tastes. 

A lot of people are not only choosing Nic salt vape juice for the countless flavour options available, but also because they prefer it over traditional “Freebase” vape juice that is the OG of the vape juice world. But why do people prefer this? 

In this article, I’m going to do exactly what the title of this article says, and that is to explain most of, if not all the things you need to know about Nic Salts, and hopefully by the end you’ll have a bit more understanding of them and any questions you may have had will be answered. Let’s get into it! 

freebase vs nicotine salts

What are Nic Salts? 

Nicotine Salts or Nic Salts as they are more commonly referred to as are a type of vape juice that is made by using Freebase nicotine like standard vape juice is, but it’s treated a bit differently to create the “salt” and the process how it’s done is pretty simple and straight forward. 

The nicotine used is extracted directly from the tobacco leaf, and it is then mixed with a weak acid, most commonly used is Benzoic acid to create the Nicotine Salt.

This is done so it neutralizes the pH levels which means the salts vaporizes at lower heat levels, and also it makes the nicotine less harsh on the throat, meaning that people can vape a higher nicotine strength without it being overly harsh, instead getting a nice smooth vape and a very satisfying nicotine hit every time.  

The introduction of an acid also means that not only does the salt vaporize at a much lower power, they are also absorbed into the body a lot quicker thanks to the assistance from the acid.

Which is one of the main reasons people enjoy using them, and also it’s useful to help people who are switching from cigarettes as it creates a similar instant nicotine hit like what you get from cigarettes. 

man vaping

The pro’s of using Nic Salts 

I’m going to discuss the Pro’s and Con’s of using Nicotine Salt e-liquids now, and give my honest opinion on both of them. Spoiler alert: The pro’s outweigh the con’s by quite some way! I’ve touched briefly above on some of the pro’s above, but I’ll go into them in more detail below. 

Smoother throat hit

As I mentioned above, using Nicotine Salts does provide a much smoother throat hit even when using a high nicotine level such as 20mg. If you were to use something like an 18mg Freebase nicotine strength vape juice, and you weren’t used to high levels of nicotine, this will probably be really harsh on your throat and not pleasurable at all. The reason that Nic Salts are smoother on the throat is because of the acid used to make them which balances the pH levels, and essentially eliminates the harshness so that a strength like 20mg is comfortable to vape. 

Faster absorbed into the system

Nicotine Salts are absorbed considerably faster into the bloodstream than traditional freebase nicotine vape juice, and yet again, this is down to the acid used to make the Nic Salts. The absorption rate is around six seconds from inhaling, which is around the same time frame as what the absorption rate is from smoking a cigarette. Which is why a lot of people prefer them, especially if someone had recently quit smoking and was transitioning from being a smoker as it will be a near like for like swap, just without all the toxic chemicals that come with smoking cigarettes. 

Freebase nicotine is absorbed into the body around 10 seconds from inhaling, so by using Nicotine Salts, it gives a much quicker absorption rate of nearly half the time frame, so it makes sense why so many people prefer vaping nicotine salts to get their nicotine hit quick! 

The flavour is enhanced through the salts

Another pro of using nicotine salts is it enhances the flavour from the concentrates used within the vape juice to make them considerably more flavoursome than traditional freebase vape juice. Standard freebase nicotine can give a bit of a “peppery” taste, especially if using a high strength, and this just doesn’t happen with Nic Salts thanks to the nicotine pH levels being toned down from the Benzoic Acid. 

I don’t know about you, but a vape juice to me has to taste good for me to continue vaping it, so using Nic salts as my vape juice of choice is a bit of a no brainer really! Some of my favourite flavours of vape juice in Freebase has been remade using Nicotine Salts and the flavour is just so much richer and better, I was amazed when I first tried them and now won’t use anything else other than Nic salts for my vape juices. 

They are a cost effective way to vape

Nicotine Salts are a hugely cost effective way to vape when compared to using Disposable Vapes for example. A bottle of 2X Vape Juice will cost for £2.95 for 10ml of vape juice, which comes packed with rich mouth watering flavours inspired by the flavours used in Disposable Vapes combined with our patented WholeNic Nic salt. And this is almost half the price of a Disposable Vape and has 5 times the amount of vape juice than what is used in a Disposable. I weren’t lying when I said it’s a much more affordable alternative to Disposables. 

man with vapers tongue

The con’s of using Nic Salts

As I mentioned, there are con’s to using Nicotine Salts, but they are very minimal and the pro’s really do outweigh them! I’ll go over a couple now, I don’t even really consider them “con’s” as such, but we will categorise them as it for the sake of this article 

Can’t be used with high powered devices

Nicotine salts normally come in a high nicotine strength and are purposefully designed to be used with low powered devices like pod systems, and only run at very low wattage settings. If you were to use Nic Salts in a high powered device, the nicotine salts will likely be far too strong for you, and could result in you getting some short term side effects such as headaches, dizziness and nausea. So if you use a higher powered device, steer clear of Nicotine Salts! 

Smooth, yet weaker throat hit

The throat hit is something that a lot of people who have quit smoking will try and chase to get a replica of, and whilst nic salts are absorbed in the same rate as what nicotine from a cigarette is, the throat hit just isn’t the same due to it being smoother from the pH levels being lowered. If you are after a punchier throat hit, then Freebase is probably best for you as the throat hit that nic salts provide is very minimal and weak compared to freebase. And this will likely give you a more pleasurable vaping experience. 

person using pod system

What vape device is best to use for Nicotine Salts? 

As I’ve mentioned above, Nicotine salts are not recommended to be used in bigger vaping devices like sub-ohm kits. I’ve written a separate article discussing this in detail, but I’ll give a brief over view of it here also. You will be best off using what’s classed as a “starter kit” which is something simple and straight forward that doesn’t take a lot of maintenance to upkeep meaning something like a pod system would be the ideal device to use for vaping nic salt e-liquids.

You won’t need to run it at a very high wattage setting, and most pod systems don’t have variable wattage and instead automatically regulates it’s wattage settings based on what coil is used in it. Speaking of which…

What coil is best to be used for vaping nicotine salts? 

Most pod systems or starter kits will come with a coil with a resistance of 1.0ohm or over, as these are designed for Mouth to lung style vaping which is what a person should be doing when vaping nicotine salts as this helps deliver a stronger nicotine hit by it being inhaled properly and it will be faster absorbed also, and satisfy their nicotine cravings. The coils resistance will also determine how much power your device can be run at, and as mentioned most pod systems are self regulating if not, the suggested wattage is normally etched onto the coil so you know what to set your devices wattage settings at. 

Are Nicotine Salts more addictive than Freebase? 

A lot of people believe that with Nicotine Salt being a different form of nicotine found to be faster absorbed and flavour enhancing that is much more addictive than standard Freebase, especially when being used in higher nicotine levels like 20mg. But this is not true at all. Because at the end of the day, Nicotine is nicotine regardless of the form it is in! Nicotine Salt is simply just the name of the reaction that happens when the acid is added, it’s still nicotine at the end of the day, which is highly addictive, but salts are not considered to be “more” addictive. 

What are Bar Salts? 

You’ve probably heard the term Bar Salts being thrown around, and advertised on Vaping websites or in your local vape shop, and it’s just a new form of Nicotine Salts that have come onto the market. Mostly inspired by Disposable Vape bars, the flavours are normally similar to the ones seen in Disposable Vapes which are normally fruity flavours with added extras to make it a bit sweeter.