First and foremost, what is a vaporizer?
A vaporizer (or vape) is an electronic device that is used to inhale vaporized ingredients without burning them. A vape turns ingredients, such as e-liquids, concentrates, or dry herbs into vapor. They accomplish this feat through the use of an atomizer that acts to heat the substrate to a temperature at which it “vaporizes”.
Vapes come in many styles, with each type designed for vaping specific materials or for delivering a specific type of experience. This guide will cover the most common types of vaporizers.
So if you’ve ever wondered what all the hype is around vaping, then keep reading on!
What materials can be vaped?
There are essentially two main types of ingredients that are used in vapes and we briefly mentioned some of these above:
- Dry Ingredients: These ingredients include dry herbs, oils, and wax concentrates and usually used in dry herb vapes. Dry herb vapes are most commonly used for recreational and medicinal purposes (where legal).
- Wet Ingredients: These ingredients include e-liquid or vape juice, and are typically used in e-liquid vapes. E-liquids are unique to their manufacturers, and the chemicals or ingredients used in each formula vary. The e-liquid or vape juice is absorbed into a piece of cotton or wick that is around the coil. As the vape heats up, this liquid reaches a critical temperature at which it turns into vapor.
Different types of vapes
Dry Herb Vapes
Dry herb vapes heat up those ingredients we mentioned above in either a quartz or a ceramic heating chamber, usually through conduction or convection.
What are the differences?
- Conduction is the method of heating the ingredient up directly and then inhaling the vapor. Conduction vapes tend to vaporize materials at a lower temperature and produce a steady consistent stream of vapor.
- Convection is the method of heating up the ingredient by circulating hot air around and through the ingredient and then inhaling the vapor. This method eliminates the need for combustion and is usually preferred by vapers using dry herb. Vaping through methods of combustion might have more carcinogens and other harmless chemicals.
The most common types of dry herb vapes are portable vapes, desktop vapes, and vape pens, but we’ll go further into depth on these specific types of vapes down below.
E-liquid vapes come in various shapes, sizes, and life expectancies, usually consisting of a battery, atomizer, and coil. The battery, as you’ve probably guessed, is what provides power to the atomizer or coil, which will then heat up. Cotton, Poly-fill or wicks at to soak up either the e-liquid or vape juice, feeding the liquid to the heated coil, which in turn transforms the juice or other substrates to vapor.
The most common e-liquid vape is the Box mod (or vape mod) style. The name comes from its “boxy” style and delivers a much more powerful vape compared to an e-cig. They are available with various features and are very customizable. Keep in mind though that these vapes typically have more maintenance involved, like refilling liquids and making hardware changes. These box mod vapes are often used among competitive vapers because they produce larger amounts of vapor.
Cigalikes (or E-cigs) are also a type of e-liquid vape. These basic devices are simple to use, require no modifications or specialized knowledge and are a great starting point for those just entering into the world of vaping. Cigalikes use an atomizer to vaporize the liquid, however, unlike box vapes, they are much smaller in size and often disposable. The atomizer inside an e-cig is usually designed for limited use, lasting for up to 500 pulls/drags. E-cigs and the cartridges within them may be either replaceable or disposable depending on the model and type.
Wax and Concentrate Vapes
Most wax and concentrate vapes operate in essentially the same way as dry herb vapes in that they work to heat the wax or concentrate to temperatures at which they transform into vapor. However, waxes and concentrates provide a much different experience when vaporized as compared to dry herb vaping.
Wax and concentrate vapes are considered to be one of the cleanest and purest methods for vaping. Waxes and concentrates are also much more potent than their dry herb counterparts, and as such should be enjoyed with caution and moderation until you assess your tolerance for various formulas.
Wax and concentrate vaping devices may also be referred to as a vape pen or dab pen, and are used by vapers for both recreational and medicinal use.
Here at Loto Labs, our concentrate vape, the Loto Lux, is the world’s first ever induction vape device, delivering an ultra-pure, smokeless vapor with unmatched flavor delivery.
As the name suggests, desktop vapes are not meant to be portable, and generally, need a power outlet to be used. There are essentially two types of desktop vapes, whip-style and forced air (also known as balloon or bag vapes).
- Whip-style vapes: This vape could loosely be compared to how you would smoke using a shisha or hookah (they are similar in design). This is a simple, less technical, and very much hassle-free way of vaping. There are two major parts, a whip and heating element. The whip has a mouthpiece, tubing, a wand and a chamber to store the dry herbs.
- Forced air vapes: This vape is more commonly used in the desktop vape world and might also be called a balloon vape. This vape has a fan that circulates really hot air through the herbs and then a balloon bag collects all the vapor. This desktop vape is much more expensive compared to a whip-style vape, however, it’s easy to use and quick to provide a high-quality vaping experience.
Two of the most popular desktop vape names out there, that you might have heard of are the “Volcano” and the “Herbalizer”.
Portable vapes are the type of vaping devices most of us are accustomed to. These vapes, as the name suggests, are small in size and easy to carry around in your pocket or purse. Portable vapes cover a wide range of uses depending on the device and are capable of using one or more of the following: concentrates (waxes and extracts), dry herb, oils or waxes.
Oil vapes are very similar to the other vapes discussed, and even e-cigs, vape pens, and desktop vapes can typically be used to vape wax, oil, or concentrates. Devices used for vaporizing oil generally consist of the following major components:
- Battery: As mentioned above, this component provides power for the vape.
- Tank: This is where you put in the oil and this component houses the heating element, typically a coil that heats up and turns
- Mouthpiece: This part is used to inhale vapor from the tank and if you prefer vapor at a cooler temp, choose a wider mouthpiece and for a warmer vapor, choose a short and narrow mouthpiece.
- Atomizer: The generic term “atomizer” is most commonly used to descript the part for your device that is responsible for heating up the coil that in turn heats up your e-juice or concentrate into vapor.
The vaping industry – types of vaping
Social & Casual Vaping
Social and casual vaping makes up the largest portion of the vape community. Social vaping has, in large part, replaced “social smoking”. Casual vaping provides users with a great way to enjoy time with friends while hanging out, something to do when bored or stressed, or a way to make those work breaks more bearable before returning to the grind.
Vaping’s rise in popularity has sparked a new niche within the industry: competitive vaping. This offshoot is serious business to those involved and is treated much like a sport or talent competition, complete with sponsors, contests, judges, and spectators.
Participants compete in any number of categories from biggest plumes of smoke to creative and artistic ways to blow vape shapes and clouds. Competitive vapers are also sometimes referred to as “cloud chasers”, and typically use the box mod vape we mentioned earlier. As the vaping industry keeps steadily expanding, these events are expected to grow.
Where legal, medicinal vapers are starting to use vaporizers for their dry herbs rather than the traditional combustion method. With legalization spreading, vaping medicinally has proven to be a growing sub-niche among the vaping community. From oils to concentrates and dry herbs, there is a lot going on in this category.
Vaping to Combat Nicotine Addiction or Improve Health
This is without a doubt one of the biggest reasons why people switch to vaping. Transitioning from cigarettes to vaping can assist in controlling addiction to nicotine, and has been shown to improve overall health markers including lung function. One day you might find yourself vaping entirely nicotine free.
The best vape for you
This guide covered a lot, and if we haven’t put you to sleep by the end of this article, we’ve done our job. We hope that you have learned some valuable tips and insights into the world of vaping and that you’ll feel more confident testing out the waters on your own soon.
Here at Loto Labs we work hard to bring you the most technologically advanced, stylish and performance driven devices on the market. For example, our very own Loto Lux is the world’s very first induction heat vaporizer.
We hope you’ll check out our site. If you have any questions never hesitate to reach out. We LOVE hearing feedback from other vape enthusiast and customers.