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The term ‘Nic Salt’ (Nicotine Salt/Salt Nic) comes from the natural Nicotine Salts found in tobacco plants. Over the past few years, Nic Salt E Liquids have grown in popularity due to the smoother vaping experience and higher possible nicotine strengths when compared to regular E Liquids. This has led to some confusion as to what exactly Nic Salts are, so we have put together a comprehensive guide with all your questions answered.

There’s a simple and scientific answer to the question “What Is Nic Salt?”.

Simply put, Nic Salts are E Liquids with a ‘new’ type of nicotine which is smoother when inhaled, and is absorbed much more easily by the body. 

The more scientific answer requires some knowledge of standard nicotine (freebase). If you’re a bit of a vaping enthusiast you’ll no doubt find this as interesting as we do. If you’d rather just get the basics though, feel free to pop to the next section.

Nic Salt Guide

Nicotine in its natural form has the chemical composition of a salt and is not easily absorbed by the body. Freebase nicotine was created by Marlboro over 50 years ago as a way to deliver the nicotine in cigarettes in a much faster and more efficient way. Freebase nicotine is made in a process that uses ammonia to increase the PH levels of the nicotine salts which, in turn, means it’s absorbed much faster by the lungs when combusted (when you burn the tobacco). This is refined nicotine in its purest form (hence the name freebase) and delivers high doses of nicotine in a more efficient way when compared to smoking regular tobacco. However, while it’s absorbed extremely quickly by the lungs, the stronger the nicotine is, the harsher the sensation on your throat when you inhale.

Nic Salt Chemical Formula

Salt Nic on the other hand is made from the same naturally occurring nicotine salts found in tobacco leaves, but it isn’t refined with the same harsh chemicals. Instead of extracting the salts and then enhancing the potency of the nicotine with ammonia, natural acids are used which react to the nicotine salts utlimately changing their chemical composition.

Instead of increasing the PH levels of the nicotine with harsh chemicals, the reaction with the natural acid actually lowers PH levels and allows the body to absorb the nicotine salts at much lower temperatures. This results in a much smoother throat hit, meaning higher dosages can be used in E Liquids.

Manufacturers have found you can add as much as 50mg Nic Salt to an E Liquid with no noticeable change in vapour production, taste, and with no increase in harshness. This is why Nic Salt is becoming a superior choice for nicotine delivery when compared to freebase nicotine. 

What are the Benefits of Nic Salt?

Freebase Vs Nicotine Salt

Most Nic Salts are manufactured with a 50% PG/50% VG Mix, which is already the smoothest E Liquid mix available (if you want to know more about PG and VG, and how they affect E Liquids, visit our guide ‘What Is Vaping And How To Get Started’).

As Nicotine Salts are created using a much less invasive method, it avoids the unpleasant ‘harsh throat hit’ that’s associated with higher strength nicotine E Liquids. This means you can have as much as 20mg nicotine strength in a 10ml bottle!

It also means you can add as much as 50mg of Nic Salts to a Shortfill E Liquid bottle without any noticeable increase in harshness (but you will of course be diluting the taste of your E Liquid with each Nic Shot added past the second).

Nic Salts are absorbed into the body much faster than freebase nicotine too. People commonly think that by using lower nicotine doses they’ll vape less and therefore, save money. Considering the much faster absorption rates of Nic Salts, you may actually find that you vape less since with nicotine salts as you’re given a satisfying amount of nicotine to begin with.

Most Nic Salt users find a 10ml bottle lasts twice as long as their regular E Liquid mix.

They’re also ideal for ex-smokers who have just made the change to vaping so you can continue to get the high levels of nicotine you’re used to, without all the harmful and carcinogenic chemicals found in regular tobacco.

Nic Salt Graph

Is Nic Salt Safe?

Nicotine Salt E Liquid is completely safe and has no negative effects on health, just like regular freebase nicotine. It does not cause Popcorn Lung or dehydrate you, and there have been no known allergic reactions reported as the result of using Nic Salt E Liquids. 

Nicotine Salt is just nicotine, made with a modern and more refined process. If you do not have any negative experiences when using regular (freebase) nicotine, then you will have no issues at all from using Nicotine Salts.

Check out the updated version of our News article “Is Vaping More Dangerous Than Smoking?” if you would like more detailed information on the truth surrounding the various vaping myths.

Woman Vaping Stock

What Coil/Device should I use for Salt Nic?

Nicotine Salt Kits

You can vape Nic Salts with pretty much any device, however due to the 50% PG / 50% VG mix they work best in POD Systems and Starter Kits (Vape Pens). It’s not recommended to use a Sub-Ohm device with Nic Salts as they’re designed to intake massive amounts of vapour in a single hit, which could lead to a dosage of nicotine far beyond what you needed or expected. 

Ideally, you would want to use a POD System for your Nic Salt needs such as the SMOK Nord POD Kit or the VOOPOO Drag S. These POD devices were designed specifically to be used with 50/50 E Liquids and as such are ideal for Salt Nic mixes.

Starter Kits and Vape Pens are suitable alternatives if you’d rather not delve into the world of POD Systems just yet. Devices like the Innokin Endura T-18E will still deliver the smoothest vape you’ve ever had when paired with Nic Salt E Liquids.

And as stated, vaping Nic Salts with a Sub-Ohm device is not advised. 50/50 E Liquids are much thinner than the 70/30 E Liquids you’d usually use, so your coils will burn out more quickly. And not to sound like a broken record, but I’m sure we all know it feels to take in too much nicotine in one go. It’s probably best to stick to your regular 70/30 E Liquids when using your cloud machines.

What are POD Systems?

POD Systems/POD Kits are small and compact vape devices that utilise ‘pods’ (refillable plastic cartridges with the coil and wick conveniently inside) instead of a tank and coil combination. The pods are interchangeable which means you can fill up various pods with your favourite flavours and swap them as you please!

Some POD Kits will come with a removable coil too so you can refine your vaping experience, but the vast majority will simply utilise the cartridge system. The pod cartridges themselves need to be replaced eventually (in the same way your coils do) but they usually last for multiple refills.

Most POD kits will use a trigger or button to fire the mod (just like a standard device), however there are some kits which you simply put to your mouth and begin to inhale in order to activate.

There are new POD Systems released almost every month with varied reviews. We’ve ensured to stock only the most durable and best rated POD Kits on the market, guaranteed to be a perfect match to your favourite Nic Salt E Liquid.

Nord 2 Pod

What are Nic Salt Shots?

Nicotine Salt Shots

Nic Shots are flavourless bottles of nicotine which you can add to a 0mg (zero nicotine) Shortfill bottle. This means you can get more of your favourite flavour for less, and you can refine and perfect your own nicotine strength. Nic Salt Shots are exactly the same, but they’re made with Nicotine Salts instead of freebase nicotine. This allows you to have a much smoother E Liquid mix regardless of how high your nicotine strength is.

Nic Salt Shots are a great way for people to increase their nicotine strength beyond the 20mg limit (which is the maximum strength available in the 10ml bottles). If you find your regular E Liquid simply isn’t giving you enough nicotine, or you find you’re vaping more and more to satisfy your needs, swapping to Nic Salt Shots and Shortfill bottles is no doubt the way to go.

How Much Nic Salt to Add to 100ml Shortfill bottles?

Nic Salt Shots work in the same way as regular Nic Shots, they just contain a smoother kind of nicotine. Our Nicotine Salt Shots come in 10ml bottles with 18mg strength. If you were to add two shots to a 100ml Shortfill bottle, you would end up with 120ml of E Liquid at 3mg strength. Adding two Nic Salt Shots would give you 120ml at 6mg strength (and so on).

Remember though, Nic Salt is absorbed much more efficiently and much faster than freebase nicotine. A 6mg Nic Salt feels much stronger than a 6mg freebase E Liquid.

We know this can seem a little confusing so if you need a little more information on Shortfills and Nic Shots, check out our handy guide ‘What are Shortfill E Liquids?‘. You can also save our mixing guide to work out exactly how much nicotine you need for your ideal bottle size. If you buy a Shortfill bottle from us, we’ll pop one in the post for you too.

Shortfill Mixing Guide

What are the best Nic Salts?

Woman Vaping Stock

Here at Vapolholic we would only recommend the very best Nic Salts, created in an ISO7 CleanRoom environment and meticulously crafted by expert mixologists in order to deliver the best flavour and smoothest experience possible. 

While there are a lot of tasty Nic Salt E Liquids out there, we can only 100% guarantee the quality of our own. Because of this, we decided it was best to get mixing!

We’re proud to announce we’ve expanded the Ferocious Flavours E Liquids. You can now grab 5 delicious brand new Ferocious Salts flavours, safe in the knowledge your E Liquid is made to the standards you’ve come to expect from our premium E Liquid range.

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Marketing & Research at Vapoholic
Graham has been a vaping for 7 years after quitting smoking, and he's never looked back. He's been in Marketing & Research for over a decade and has been working in the vaping industry for just over 4 years.
Graham Murdoch
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