Whether you choose your e-liquid for the flavor or you like a juice that gives you big clouds, one thing that will help you pick the right liquid is an understanding of PG/VG ratio. 

In this post we take a closer look at PG and VG, explaining what they are, why they’re used in e-liquids, and what ratios you should be choosing based on the type of vaper you are.

What are PG and VG

Propylene Glycol (PG) and Vegetable Glycerine (VG) are known as e-liquid bases or carriers. The bases are one of four ingredients that all e-liquids should contain, the other two being flavorings and nicotine. PG and VG are odorless and colorless organic compounds that are members of the alcohol chemical class. 

pg_vg base eliquid

The job of PG and VG in an e-liquid is to act as a carrier compound. When an e-liquid is heated, it changes from a liquid state to a vapor state. The carriers hold the nicotine and flavorings in suspension, so they pass to a vapor state, enhancing the vaping experience.

The vast majority of e-liquids will use one or both carriers. The ratio used will be stated on the list of ingredients.

What is Propylene Glycol

Propylene Glycol is used in a wide range of applications including moisturizers, cosmetics, fragrances, food, and medicines. It safe to ingest orally, inject into the body, or apply topically to the skin. PG has been used safely for over 50 years.

PG has a thinner consistency than VG, which means PG e-liquids are runnier than those that use VG. The lower density of PG is good for your devices as you get less build-up and gunk on the heating elements.

PG delivers a stronger throat hit than VG but can cause your mouth and throat to become dry with excessive use. 

A small number of individuals are allergic to PG. Symptoms can include a rash or tingling in the throat and mouth. Reactions will typically alleviate if you simply stop using the e-liquid which caused the reaction. However, if you are worried, you should consult your doctor.

What is Vegetable Glycerine

Like Propylene Glycol, Vegetable Glycerine has been used for years in foods and medicines. It is known to be one of the safest substances available and is approved by the FDA as safe for human consumption.

As VG is a thicker and more dense substance than PG, it will gunk up and clog your devices more quickly. Generally, if you’re using high VG e-liquids, you’ll need to clean your e-cigs more frequently.

VG is not known to cause any allergic reactions. Individuals who may have experienced side effects when using PG based e-liquids often successfully switch to VG juices.

The thicker consistency of VG means that it provides more vapor than PG. It also offers less of a throat hit and therefore has fewer similarities with traditional cigarettes than PG based e-liquids.

What PG/VG Ratio is Best

eliquid ratio

There is no correct ratio when it comes to PG and VG, and the type of e-liquid you pick will depend on what you personally enjoy about vaping. 

If you love big clouds and aren’t that fussed about the flavor and throat hit, then a high VG juice is right for you.

If you vape for the flavor and are looking for a throat hit similar to smoking traditional cigarettes, then a high PG liquid would be most suitable. 

If you’re looking for a good balance between flavor and vapor then a 50/50 PG/VG ratio, such as the tobacco e-liquids produced by Red Vape is a great option. A 50/50 blend will deliver the flavor you want while also providing a satisfying amount of vapor.

If you’re new to vaping, then it’s worth experimenting with different ratios from different manufacturers until you find a juice that’s perfect for you.

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