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How to Make E Liquid: Step by Step Guide for Beginners

guide on DIY

Howdy, Fellows?! 

 Vaping is always about big assortment and individuality, isn’t it? Even if you are new to vape or you have been using e-cigs for a while, you might have wondered about how to make your own vape juice which will deliver truly amazing flavour, big clouds so as perfect nicotine strength for you. If you googled “How to make e liquid”, “DIY e juice” and find yourself here, we are happy for you, as you will find a super informative e liquid mixing guide.

In this blog post about how to make vape liquid you will find out the following:

  1. What is DIY E-Liquid?
  2. Ingredients To Make Your Own Vape Juice 
  3. Equipment To Make Your Own E-Liquid
  4. Step-By-Step Guide On How To Make E Juice

But first, before we dig into details of the process of making your own vape juice, let’s beef your knowledge about what the DIY vape liquid stands for.

What is DIY E-Liquid?

DIY e-liquid stands for ‘Do It Yourself’ which means a process of mixing e liquid ingredients in order to make a customized vape juice instead of buying a ready-made one from a vape store

So, let’s get started! 

The process of making DIY e liquids is incredibly exciting one. You feel like a chemist who is creating a totally new substance which may save the world, why not :) And all you need to have on hand is a basic equipment, high quality ingredients and some knowledge about mixing e liquids. With your individual flavour preferences and imagination you can proudly make your perfect vape juice, saving a little money as well. Here is a checklist of the main ingredients for making e liquid.

Ingredients To Make Your Own Vape Juice 

ingredients for eliquid

“What are e liquids made of?” this is a question that many people seem confused about for more than 10 years now. However, there is nothing to hide about what goes into each vape juice bottle. In most cases, both a ready-made e cig liquid purchased online or in a physical store and your own vape juice are made of 4 basic ingredients:

    1. Vegetable Glycerin(VG)
    2. Propylene Glycol (PG)
    3. Flavourings
    4. Nicotine

     I.VG and PG

These are two most important ingredients in e-liquid production, so they are ‘must have’ when it comes to making vape juice. Vegetable Glycerin and Propylene Glycol are called ‘diluent’ for their main mission: to dilute highly concentrated nicotine and flavourings, in order to grant exceptional vaping experience. There is a big difference between PG and VG. They differ in taste, viscosities and deliver diverse throat hit when making a drag. They come in variable ratios, while the most common are 70/30 VG/PG, 50/50 and 30/70 VG/PG. For dense clouds choose high VG e-juices while for intense flavour sensation get high PG ones. However, it's a safe bet that you would like to experiment with various ratios first, if you are just getting started. So let’s take VG and PG point by point.

  • Vegetable Glycerin 

Vegetable Glycerin is a non-toxic fluid having a sweet taste and no smell and colour. It’s very thick and more viscous (if compared with Propylene glycol). 

Please, don’t be scared of these chemically-sounding words. Glycerin is absolutely natural substance that is processed from most kinds of fat. The glycerin used in vape juices comes from vegetable oils, that is why it’s called Vegetable Glycerin. Many products you use in your daily life contain VG. Impressed? So were we. Vegetable glycerin is widely used even in medicines and food industry as a sweetener (it has a sweet taste, remember?). 

High VG e liquids are typically preferred by so called “drippers”, because of a smoother throat hit and guaranteed big vape cloud production.

  • Propylene Glycol

Propylene Glycol is an alcohol nearly without odour. It has a slight sweet taste too, but still not that sweet in order to be used as a sweetener. However, it is added to food, medicines, personal care products, etc., to keep them moist. High PG vape juices tend to provide stronger throat feel when vaped. Important to mention that a very few numbers of people are sensitive to PG. But it doesn’t mean they are not able to vape in this case. The solution is to choose a high VG e-juice instead, or even 100% VG, so called PG free vape liquids. 

PG is used in antifreeze production. And this fact is a pain in the neck for many tobacco control fanatics out there. Why? Just because they keep on claiming that e-juices contain antifreeze. It’s a nonsense indeed. PG is just one and non-toxic ingredient in antifreeze. Nothing more. Only because Prolylene Glycol is used in manufacturing process of a product that has a reputation for being poisonous, this doesn’t mean that PG is a harmful substance.

So summing up here: a good diy vape juice must contain PG and/or VG. The higher VG ratio, the bigger clouds and smoother the throat hit; The higher PG level, the better flavour profile and more intense throat hit. 

     II.   Diluted Nicotine

Jumping ahead a bit, we must say that this ingredient is optional and individual. If you would like to vape without nicotine, you can not add this substance when you make your own vape liquid. We must also say that nicotine is highly addictive chemical. 

However, if you were a heavy smoker and have just jumped into the world of vaping, a zero nicotine e-liquid is not an option for you. We would recommend you experimenting with nicotine strengths, starting with higher-nicotine vape juices before you find the most appropriate one that will satisfy your nicotine cravings. 

Nicotine is what makes vaping such an effective alternative to smoking. When pouring some nicotine to your diy e juice, you can satisfy your nicotine cravings without having to set fire to tobacco leaves, not to mention that nicotine gives an excellent throat hit as well.

Generally, 100 mg/ml diluted nicotine is widely used in the industry because it is easier to calculate and  get specific strength per volume. A 100 ml bottle of 36 or 48 mg/ml nicotine is usually enough for beginners. 

Be attentive when working with diluted nicotine. Highly concentrated nicotine is a dangerous substance and the intake of it through ingestion, inhalation or absorption through the skin can cause poisoning & sickness, while in extreme cases even death. So here are some rules on how to store nicotine correctly.

The rule №1 – keep your nicotine out of children and pet’s reach; 

The rule №2 – avoid direct sunlight or other bright light sources or store the nicotine in a refrigerator;

The rule №3 – store your nicotine in specified containers. Note that household containers will not work here. We would recommend you to store the substance in the bottle in what the diluted nicotine came in.

    III.    Flavour Concentrates 

And here comes the most interesting part when you make your own e juice. Vape industry is all about never-ending assortment of flavours, starting from original tobacco flavours, ending with alcohol and beverage e juice tastes. But if you are the one to decide how to make your own e-liquid, you are the one to choose what your e cig juice will ultimately taste like. 

The vape fluid you have created so far does not have much taste on its own, so adding some flavourings is what the doctor ordered. There are thousands of individual flavour concentrates to select from, which when mixed, create countless unique vape juice recipes. You can also buy one-shots, where multiple flavours are pre-mixed, or to make e-juice without flavour too, which is referred to as "neat" vape liquid. It’s always about choices, so it’s up to you.

Equipment To Make Your Own E-Liquid

equipment for DIY

  • Bottles

A clean drip tip bottle should be on hand when you start to make vape juice. You can choose either plastic or glass bottles. Luckily, they are widely available and cheap. We strongly recommend you to use new bottles and not to re-use them, trying to get them clean enough. You can choose a bottle size starting from 10ml up to 120ml or even more, depending on the e-juice volume you intend to create. Buy a couple of 10ml bottles first for test recipes and some 60ml bottles for bigger amounts. 

  • Gloves

How to make e-liquid without disposable gloves? That’s impossible yet dangerous. Arm yourself with some gloves and your hands are protected from nicotine, that can be absorbed through the skin.

  • Pipettes 

Pipettes will help you achieve the needed amount of PG, VG, flavouring and nicotine in to your e-juice mixing container.

  • Mixing Containers

Before you pour your own vape juice into the bottle, you will need a mixing container to get all the ingredients together. The containers are especially useful if you are producing large e-liquid quantities.  

Once you are sure what flavour, VG/PG ratio and nicotine strength to get out of your personal DIY vape juice, it’s time to start the creation process. 

Step-By-Step Guide On How To Make E Juice

how to make eliquid

     Step 1.  Determine the correct proportions you need

The first task here is to find out how much nicotine, PG/VG and flavouring you need in order to make your own e liquid. A little math and you’ll get the perfect proportion. But remember that if you get wrong, you can receive unwelcome experience. There are many online DIY e-liquid calculators that will help you get detailed results for each ingredient.

     Step 2.  Extract nicotine from container

Put on the gloves and add the exact amount of nicotine determined by calculator to your mixing container. 

     Step 3.  Measure and add flavour concentrates 

The recommended amount of flavour concentrates for vape juice is approximately 10%-15% of the total volume of your e-cig juice, so if you are making a 50ml e-liquid you will need 5ml, for 100ml e-juice 10ml of flavouring is needed. Be aware that flavourings are very complicated artificial concentrates. In most cases ‘over flavouring’ is not going to make the e juice better. In such cases your e-liquid is very likely to “wash out” the flavour making it taste like the chemical constituents rather the needed flavour.

     Step 4.  Measure and add the base/diluent (VG/PG)

Please note that some diluted nicotine or flavourings may already contain PG. So when adding the PG to your vape juice, make sure these ingredients have no PG ratio. In case your nicotine or flavour concentrate contain enough PG, you will have to add VG only. 

The diluent is the final ingredient to complete your DIY e-liquid. Imagine you are preparing a 50ml e-juice and you’ve already added 16ml of nicotine, 5ml of flavour concentrate, and you have a total of 21ml. So you need to add 29ml of VG/PG.

     Step 5.  Transfer all the contents of your mixing container into the bottle.

Squirt your DIY vape juice into the bottle and screw on the child-resistant cap. 

  Step 6.  Shake the bottle

You’ll have to shake the bottle for several minutes to ensure all the components are mixed properly. As the components may separate over time, we would recommend you to shake the bottle a bit every time you are pouring your personal vape juice into your tank.

     Step 7.  Steep your e-juice

We do understand that you can’t wait to try your first made e liquid, but we recommend you to possess yourself. Basically your e-cig juice is ready for vaping, but as you’ve poured you heart and soul into the process, you would like to get the most out of it. So let your e-juice steep a bit, in order to get more intense flavour. 

Steeping is the process over time when chemical reactions take place between the ingredients and the oxygen in the air, letting the flavours blend together. 

Think of a good wine, which is getting even better with the time. When it comes to e-liquids, the situation is very similar. There is no need to be waiting for several years, of course – a few days will be enough.

Now when you’ve got the basics about how to make e cig juice, you can practice with flavourings, PG/VG ratios and nicotine strengths, in order to get your perfect e-liquid. Browse Vawoo to find top quality ingredients you may need for your DIY vape juice. 

Good luck, fellows, and happy vaping!

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About the author
Julie Korman

Development manager

Julie has over 7 years of experience writing hundreds of reports, articles, and e-books in diverse fields. Since 2016 she has been studying the vape industry and has written tons of articles dedicated to various aspects of vaping. Julie is able to see the big picture in a piece of writing as well as being diligent about the details. For over a year Julie is an official writer and editor on Vawoo Vape Marketplace. She is a writer who clearly understands the practical and emotional challenges of putting down word after word after word.
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