For anyone new to vaping, it may come as a surprise to know that you can make your own vape juice. Crafting your own distinctive cocktail isn’t just for professionals, and, like basement brewers and distillers, vape juice is ripe for becoming another DIY phenomenon.
It’s reasonably easy to get started with making your own vape juice. You’ll need your e-liquid ingredients, your equipment and mixing supplies, your flavor concentrates that you’re going to go with (not food flavoring), nicotine juice, and a little bit of time and patience.
DIY projects are always a blast, and nothing is more beneficial than a DIY design that benefits something you already do. Making your own vape juice is right up that alley. You get to mix and match the colors and flavors you like, whether sweet or tobacco flavors, perfecting your homemade vape juice through trial and error.
How To Make DIY Vape Juice?
You’ll need to start by preparing each part of your DIY vape juice. For instance, you’ll prep your liquid nicotine bottles first, followed by your flavor, then colors, then your base liquid.
Therefore, the steps are as follows:
- Prepare your diluted nicotine base or nicotine salts (Or go nicotine free)
- Prep your flavor concentrates (Don’t use food flavorings)
- Prep your base liquid (PG and VG)
You’ll want a good online calculator to determine the exact nicotine base you want to go into the overall blend. The calculator calculates every portion of the DIY e-juice process and informs you of the number of milligrams of nicotine needed.
The calculator site also includes a breakdown of how much vodka to use if your nicotine liquid ends up too strong.
When it comes to preparing the flavor of your DIY vape juice, you will need to be precise because the vape juice flavor will decide the efficacy of the entire exercise. If you’re new to making homemade vape juice, you should stick to just a single flavor as you learn the ins and outs of the process.
Additionally, always start small and work your way up to a larger amount. Since this step is your first leap into making DIY e-juice, begin with a slightly lower flavor amount than what you’ll need because too much flavoring can give you a perfume taste. This step is where the most amount of trial and error will occur when trying to make a flavorful vape experience.
Your base will be the PG/VG that your recipe calls for, which usually comes down to half and half or two parts to eight parts ratio (2:8). Whichever way you decide to go, you’re going to follow this action by mixing all of your ingredients thus far together.
Mix your base, vape flavors, and nicotine solution in a single bottle. Shake your bottle well, especially if it has plenty of VG because VG is much thicker than PG. Either way, spend a ludicrous amount of time getting your juice mixed up.
You want to make sure everything is thoroughly mixed as best as possible. Once done mixing, you can set your concoction aside for now and get ready for the next phase if you choose to do so.
The steeping phase is all about personal preference, and there are three primary ways to do it.
Rest steeping is the easiest way to steep your vape juice. The idea behind steeping is to get all of the components in the mixture, primarily the flavors and nicotine solution, to mix thoroughly and completely.
When rest steeping, you’ll leave your bottle in a cool dark place for two weeks. During that time, you should shake up the mixture about every four to eight hours.
Throughout the process, you should test your homemade e-liquid by pouring some into your vape pen and smoking it. Once it reaches the flavor you’re aiming for, the steeping process is complete, and the vape juice is officially ready for use.
Steeping vape juice through oxidation isn’t a complicated process, but it is more hands-on than resting and requires you to be careful about when you stop. Too much oxidation will end up evaporating too much of your diluted nicotine and flavor, leaving you with a wasted product.
To oxidize your DIY e-liquid, remove the lid for anywhere between eight and twelve hours, replacing the top for 24 hours afterward. Just like rest steeping, you’ll want to taste test your e-juice periodically until you get the results you want.
You would do well to test your e-liquid right before you close the lid for 24 hours, so you can get an idea of how well the oxidation process is going. Degasification is also taking place, ridding the mixture of undesirable byproducts common when you mix these components.
Water Bath Steeping
Water bath steeping is when you submerge your bottle of e-liquid into some water for a period of two to four hours. However, you won’t be submerging your DIY e-liquid in room temperature water. Instead, heat the water to between 86°F and 120°F.
Like the oxidation and rest steeping, you’ll have to test in-between stages of submersion. You also need to be careful not to get the water too hot or too cool when making vape juice with the water bath method.
Of course, it’s better to mess up on the cooler end than it is the hotter, but making a blunder when you make vape juice will still waste a lot of time from the overall steeping process.
You can use various methods to obtain the hot water you need for sustained periods. For instance, some people swear by the efficacy of a slow cooker. Others prefer to use tap water at its absolute hottest. You can also slow-heat a pot of water on the stove and submerge your plastic or glass bottles in there.
Finally, always be sure to carefully monitor the temperature, test your mixture often, and never let your juice sit in the water for too long. Like everything else when you make vape juice for the first time, there’s a lot of trial and error before you become a master.
What’s Next After Steeping?
Assuming everything comes out alright in the end, you should have an entire bottle of e-juice ready to enjoy. Considering that the standard plastic bottle used for homemade juice is usually between eight and twelve ounces, you’ll have a good-sized mixture of cig juice to try out.
Also, now that you’ve learned the ins and outs of the process, you can capitalize on your homemade vape juice by making more and perfecting your craft. Ultimately, creating your own vape juice may open the door for much larger prospects down the road, such as opening your own vaping business.
Benefits of Making Your Own Juice
Anytime you can create something by yourself without being dependent on purchasing the finalized product on a store shelf, you’ll get a sense of profound accomplishment.
Other benefits include:
- Reveling in your own creativity
- A steady supply of e-juice
- Saving a lot of money
- Expansion possibilities and opening your own business
- You’ll understand the subtle nuances involved in e-juice manufacturing
Creativity Will Take You Places
There’s nothing worse than being excited about a flavor you haven’t tried yet just to find out that the taste is abysmal.
Of course, that only happens after you’ve exchanged your hard-earned money for this dog excrement trying to pass itself off as Dreamcicle Orange. Fortunately for the DIY crowd, you can get around spending money on crap when you make vape juice yourself.
The level of your own creativity is your only limit when making your own juice flavors.
Steady Supply of E-Juice
You won’t get a steady supply of e-liquids overnight, but once you’ve found “the one” e-juice after countless hours of perfection, you’ll have as much as you’ve ever wanted for a far better price than you’d typically spend.
Once you’ve perfected your recipe in one juice’s flavor, you can move on to another until you’ve reached a whole catalog of multiple flavors you enjoy. From then on out, you can supply yourself with the ingredients to make huge quantities.
You’ll Save a Lot of Money
E-juice isn’t cheap, and in the short-term scheme of things, you may end up spending a significant amount of dough.
However, once you’ve got your e-juice recipes down—along with the fact that you’re quickly becoming a self-made expert in DIY juice recipes—the short-term cash hemorrhaging will come to an end.
Starting Your Own Business
If you’re familiar with marketing strategies and standard business administration, there’s no reason that your foray into vape juice DIY can’t turn into a lucrative business opportunity.
That’s not to mention what can happen if you discover a flavor that’s quite popular amongst yourself and your friends. Your friends can spread the word for you, and they’re potentially the best marketers that money doesn’t have to buy.
Just remember that when selling your product, you’ll need a sticker that says that the product contains nicotine.
Learning the Ropes
The last and potentially best benefit of making your own e-juice is that you’ll learn the ins and outs of manufacturing a product on your own. Not only are you working on perfecting the recipe for your own personal interests, but you’re also learning the entire process.
Once you’ve learned how to make vape juice, the money-saving truly begins. Also, when you understand how to get the best possible outcome, you’ll know how to purchase ingredients without over or under-doing it.
What Ingredients Do You Need To Get Started?
Ingredients go well beyond just the flavors that go into the e-juice. Ingredients also include supplies you’ll need to make it happen and pull everything together into one final product.
Vegetable Glycerin (VG)
VG makes huge, floating clouds when you exhale and also tends to pass on some of that sweetness to the flavorings that go into your mixture.
Vegetable glycerin is easy to purchase, and you can find it in just about everything that we eat and much of the medicine that we take.
Propylene Glycol (PG)
Propylene glycol sounds like one of those nefarious concoctions you learned about in Chemistry 101. Fortunately, there’s not much harmful about it as it is an organic chemical compound used in the food industry. It’s easy to purchase, available in most markets, and FDA-approved.
Vodka doesn’t go into e-juice so that you can get drunk along with your nicotine kick. However, vodka does have some beneficial attributes, especially when you are just getting started and learning the ropes.
Vodka, or distilled water, is mainly used to thin out some of your more viscous results. Without it, you may end up throwing out your entire batch just because you ended up with something a little too thick. Vodka can also give your e-liquid recipes some extra throat hit.
When using vodka to thin your vape liquid, just remember only to use a few drops at a time.
Probably the most exciting aspect of a DIY e-juice project is the flavor you’re going to try and produce, whether you prefer vanilla or strawberry flavoring or anything in between. The problem is, there are literally so many flavors that most of the trial and error process may revolve around getting the flavor combinations just right.
Whenever you purchase a flavor concentrate (not food flavor!), read carefully from the label on the mix or manual information that comes with it to discover how the flavors blend together and the percentage that you’ll need.
You should also note that when you add flavor to your product, you should know what PG-VG ratio works best with the flavoring.
To figure out how much nicotine juice you’ll need, you should start low with 1.5 to 3mg of nicotine per milliliter. Starting with a low liquid nicotine concentration is best because too much nicotine juice can make you feel sick.
You’re going to need a lot of plastic cups—stay away from styrofoam—rubber gloves, syringes, napkins, face shields or goggles, and some plastic bottles with childproof caps.
If you’re planning on pushing your e-juice manufacturing talents to the next level, consider buying much of these mixing supplies in bulk. Costco and Sam’s Club are excellent choices for such bulk-buying necessities.
All Things Considered
Making your own e-liquid is not so much a difficult process as it is a trial and error routine. Once you have everything down pat, the process and steps will become easier with more time and experience, and you’ll get better vaping sensations. The best part is that anybody can do it and for relatively cheap.
Now that you understand the basic principles behind concocting your own brand of e-juice, you can go ahead and take the reins and see where you can go from here. One thing is for sure when it comes to making e-juice, the results are nearly infinite.