What E-Cigarette / E-Liquid Nicotine Strength Should You Use?

The most common question first-time e-cig buyers ask is “What nicotine strength do I choose?”

The answer is relative to each user’s cigarette smoking consumption level. Sometimes, your first try might be wrong because of how each person will individually react to nicotine. While you would think a heavy smoker would want higher levels of nicotine, and vice-versa light smokers would require less nicotine, in some cases it’s the other way around.

First let’s go over how all electronic cigarette brands measure the different strengths. They are either displayed in percentage (%) or in milligrams (mg). Almost all brands offer the same concentrations. You will usually find the following; (some variances exist)

  • Strong – 3.6%+ or 36mg and more
  • Regular/Strong – 2.4% or 24mg
  • Regular/Light – 1.8% or 18mg
  • Light – 1.2% or 12mg
  • Extra Light –  0.6% or 6mg
  • Nicotine Free – 0% or 0mg

If you compare with traditional cigarettes, a very strong cigarette is around 2-2.3mg of nicotine, so the 24mg in the cartridge would be the equivalent of a pack of strong cigarettes. However, your vaping habits come into play, if you enjoy vaping frequently, a light nicotine choice might be best for you. Avoiding extra nicotine consumption is key, in fact reducing it is even better and electronic cigs give you that possibility. With that said, you don’t actually have to do much to make that happen, because e-cigarettes do not offer nearly as much nicotine delivery as smoking does.

Nicotine Delivery

Nicotine Deliver plays a very important role in the knowledge needed to facilitate the switch from smoking to vaping. The problem with e-cigarettes and personal vaporizers, is that it takes much longer for the nicotine base to enter your bloodstream, as where puffing on a cigarette is almost instantaneous and delivers extremely high levels of nicotine within the first 5 minutes. e-cigarettes take much longer, up to 20 minutes before you start getting a considerable amount of nicotine. For that reason, heavy smokers often benefit from using stronger nicotine volumes when first switching to e-cigs. It will reduce the lack of satisfaction often suffered by new users of e-cigarettes. Overtime, you can gradually reduce the nicotine content to where you no longer suffer from withdrawal, all while reducing the amount of nicotine your body ingests every day.


It’s good to keep track and try different levels of strength to see what fits you and your routine best. Sometimes you need a quick vape with more strength to satisfy a craving, while other times you might just want to vape for pleasure, with an extra light concentration or even no nicotine at all. The beauty of being able to swap on the go makes it all more magical.

Because electric cigarettes don’t taste exactly the same as tobacco burning, it’s key to experiment a little bit, but in general, regular and strong cigarette smokers will stick to 18-36mg but often use a mix of strong and lighter cartridges, allowing them to puff for long periods of time without risking in-taking too much nicotine. Lighter strength smokers will opt for 18mg or less while also utilizing lower strength to 0% nicotine volumes, allowing them to vape larger amounts in a safe manner. Going back to the fact that e-cigs deliver nicotine much slower and in lesser concentrations, many users tend to find themselves taking many draws more frequently, that is why low strength to 0% strength nicotine e-liquid makes a good choice to help control the habit.

Additionally to strength, users will have many different flavor palettes to try and while many flavors may not float your boat, you might find some that will make you wonder why you took so long to switch from smoking to vaping. If you are a first time user or complete e-cig newbie, you can learn about e-cigarettes with our full guide to help you get up to speed. We hope this article helps you with the question. Have fun exploring and avoid wasting your money, only pick from the top e-cig brands on the market by consulting our 2014 reviews.