Vaping is the new kid on the block. Look around most city high streets in US and many parts of Europe and you’ll see vape stores popping up alongside the inevitable betting shops, cafes and hair salons.
Where vaping once turned heads, it is now becoming about as common as chewing gum.
It’s a 21st century lifestyle revolution!
10 – What exactly is vaping?
Vaping is the inhalation of vapour through a vaporiser which contains nicotine and eliquids but no tobacco. During inhalation, pretend smoke billows from the vaporiser. Eliquids come in an amazing selection of surprising flavours – puddings like apple or lemon meringue pie, fruity – mango, lychee & papaya as well as menthol and mint. Manufacturers have taken the opportunity to give the liquids some, let’s say unusual names…vamp toes, gorilla trigger, to name but a couple.
9 – The origins of Vaping
Hon Lik, a Chinese medical researcher is credited with producing the original ecigarette in 2003. Hon’s father had died of lung cancer and Hon himself smoked like the proverbial chimney. He was desperate to give up and, so the story goes, the idea for vaping came to him one night in a dream.
Sadly Lik’s ecigarettes didn’t take off but the concept did and vaping is now a flourishing multi million pound vaping business.
Like wheelie suitcases, you wonder why no one came up with this game changing idea a long time ago.
8 – Why has vaping caught on?
It’s not rocket science. We all know smoking’s bad for us – the statistics speak for themselves. Every year in UK, around 46,000 people die from cancer and 28,000 from respiratory disease as a result of smoking. In US, one in 5 deaths is smoking related. Shocking but apparently not enough for many to kick the habit. New Year’s resolutions tend to fall by the wayside by mid January but with vaping, as if by magic, a solution has appeared.
Vaping is a relatively pain free way to quit the 20/30/40 a day cigarette habit. It’s almost too good to be true – the nicotine hit without the risk of cancer. Basically, your vaping habit won’t kill you, stain your teeth or fingers or make your breath, home or clothes smell like an ashtray. That hacking cough will be a thing of the past and you’ll be bounding up stairs without puffing and panting. What’s not to like?
And vaping is so much more, well….sexy than nicotine patches.
7 – Let’s talk money…
No question – a serious cigarette habit burns a big hole in the average budget. Smoking is literally burning money…money which could be spent on life’s necessities or…. luxuries. If you smoke a pack of cigarettes a day, you’ll be spending around £200 every month! Vaping on the other hand comes in at approximately £20 a month…you do the maths!
If you switch from smoking to vaping, you might just feel like you’ve won the lottery! Plus you’re investing in your health. Win win situation, right!
6 – When did vaping start trending?
A decade or so ago, hardly anyone had heard about vaping but from around 2007, it started to go mainstream. And then in 2014, the Oxford English Dictionary made ‘vape’ their word of the year – the ‘v’ word was on everyone’s lips, so vaping, like texting or tweeting had not only entered our vocabulary but had truly arrived on the scene.
5 – How many vapers are there?
So, let’s do some number crunching:
The health charity Ash estimates there are 2.1 million vapers in UK while a smoking in England survey calculates 20% of smokers and 30% of recent quitters have used vaporisers. There’s still a way to go though as there are about 8.7 million smokers. But the vaping industry is going from strength to strength and is worth about £90m in UK and £1.8bn globally.
Many celebrities including Lily Allen and Leonardo DiCaprio have been photographed vaping. There’s a vaping lab in trendy Shoreditch, E London where you can vape to your heart’s content with other vapers – no more huddling outside in the cold, sneaking a cheeky cigarette. Festivals dedicated to vaping are springing up globally.
Vaping is HOT right now.
4 – Is there a catch?
Vaping feels a lot like having your cake and eating it doesn’t it?
But is there a catch? Is it safe, is the burning (excuse the pun) question.
Well, the consensus amongst public health professionals in UK and US is no question, vaping’s definitely a healthier option than smoking but they’re being cautious because we’re groping in the dark here. Vaping’s a new trend so nobody yet knows the precise long term effects of it. There is some evidence to suggest that, as vaping involves inhaling into the lungs, it could cause respiratory problems.
So, according to the health experts, the very best of all possible worlds is to neither smoke nor vape.
But, then nothing is totally safe, you could choke on an apple pip or a cherry stone, right.
3 – The cool image could backfire
Amongst metrosexuals in many parts of Europe and US, vaping is uber cool, especially as many celebrities have been pictured with an ecigarette hanging from their lips. Result, some under 18s who didn’t smoke before have been lured into vaping, echoing the old days when film icons like James Dean led to a surge in smoking.
As mentioned, vaping has not been tried and tested for long enough to establish whether there are any hidden nasties, so although it’s very probably a good alternative for hardened smokers, it’s not necessarily a great choice for previous non-smokers.
2 – Which countries have banned vaping?
Yes, vaping is definitely seen as the preferred option in many countries but, by no means all. If you’re a vaper, before you buy your ticket, be aware you won’t be able to buy your supplies to feed your ‘v’ habit or light up in the following countries:
Argentina, Brazil, Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Israel, Jordan, Oman, Qatar, Singapore, Taiwan, Thailand, United Arab Emirates, Uruguay and Venezuela.
Generally the reason for the ban in these places is the lack of hard evidence about the safety of vaping and concern about the fact that nicotine is present.
The picture is constantly changing, so best to check for updated information.
1 – The future
So in the ever growing virtual world of email, etickets, egambling, eshopping and edating, we now have ecigarettes.
What’s next in the etechnology universe?
Ealcohol, something a little more fun and intoxicating than current alcohol free booze maybe?
Or echocolate – the delicious sugar rush without the calories and sugar.
The possibilities are endless…the eworld is our oyster…wish I had an ecrystal ball to see what the next ecraze will be.