Vaping devices are everywhere, offering a variety of contents such as CBD, nicotine, and even essential oils (believe it or not). However, the chemicals in vapes offer their own diversity, for better or for worse. Sometimes these chemicals are as simple as vegetable glycerin and propylene glycol, known as VG and PG, respectively. Other times, users inhale heavy metals or other toxic chemicals commonly associated with tobacco products.
Whether you’re exhaling water vapor from vaping devices or cigarette smoke, it’s vital to understand the chemicals contained within. Knowing the difference between what’s safe and what’s not may be the deciding factor the next time you purchase an e-liquid or vape juice.
CBD vapes and other nicotine-free devices offer a very important alternative for tobacco product users, especially those who wish to quit. When inhaling water vapor instead of cigarette smoke, users ingest less toxic chemicals through the lungs.
However, smoking is generally unsafe, regardless of what you’re inhaling. We cannot classify any single compound as “safe” for inhalation because human lungs are easily irritated by combustibles, including any smokable compound.
Despite this, we must also understand that users smoke for a reason. Whether they’re vaping their daily dose of CBD or nicotine-infused e-liquid, users need to recognize the chemicals in vape devices entering their body, without believing any one of these compounds is “safe” for long-term exposure. Any combustible can cause long-term ailments with repeated exposure.
“Everything in moderation, including moderation,” said Oscar Wilde.
Vegetable Glycerin (VG)
Vegetable glycerin (VG), also known scientifically as glycerol, is one of the most common chemicals in vape devices or e-liquids. But what is it, and why is it so common?
For starters, it’s a colorless, sweet-tasting, non-toxic liquid. It’s generally produced from coconut oil, soybeans, or palm oil. VG is found in a variety of everyday products and foods, including:
- Air Fresheners
- Whey Products
- Dairy-Based Drinks
- Oats & Cereals
- Baked Goods
It possesses a mildly sweet flavor – comparable to a diluted simple syrup – which is partially why it’s so popular within vaping devices and vape juices.
Additionally, vegetable glycerin produces thick clouds of smoke when vaporized. Because of this, it’s able to encapsulate other compounds when combined and heated, making it suitable for vaping devices. Many users prefer thick clouds of water vapor when exhaling from a vape, and VG is responsible for these vapor clouds.
Propylene Glycol (PG)
Propylene glycol (PG) is a synthetic liquid commonly used by food and pharmaceutical manufacturers. It’s one of the most common chemicals in vape juices because it’s “generally regarded as safe” by the FDA for use in ingestible goods.
You can find both propylene glycol and vegetable glycerin in just about every e-liquid on the planet. Why?
VG accounts for water vapor clouds, as we covered, but PG is responsible for the “throat hit” that users experience when using a vape. A “throat hit” is the physical sensation in the throat caused by nicotine as it’s inhaled. Because vaping devices were designed primarily as an alternative to tobacco products, it was important for manufacturers to mimic the “throat hit” of a cigarette, enticing users to turn to vaping for cigarette cessation.
Both vegetable glycerin and propylene glycol are non-toxic chemicals. However, more research is needed on the safety of these compounds before users inhale them long-term.
When discussing the chemicals in vape e-liquids and other ingestible goods, heavy metals refer to trace amounts of metal found in the final product. These metals are then consumed by the user unknowingly and can have dangerous side effects.
Heavy metals can be found in just about every ingestible good on the market, at least before product testing and purification. A variety of manufacturing practices produce heavy metals. That is why all CBD Choice products are third-party lab tested prior to packaging and sale. This way, we can omit the products that contain traces of heavy metals, saving our CBD Choice family from exposing themselves to these harmful contaminants.
The most common heavy metals found in vaping devices include:
- Lead: long-term exposure can cause anemia, general weakness, and kidney damage.
- Copper: long-term exposure can cause bodily irritation, headaches, and dizziness.
- Cadmium: primarily found in tobacco products, but long-term exposure can cause cancer.
- Mercury: primarily found in cigarette smoke, but long-term exposure can cause nervous system toxicity.
- Nickel: primarily found in cigarette smoke, but long-term exposure can cause various forms of lung disease, including bronchitis.
Luckily, nicotine and CBD vape manufacturers alike are aware of the dangers of heavy metals. Trustworthy manufacturers will always remove products from their inventory that have tested positive for these heavy metals. This is why you should never purchase vaping devices or e-liquids from untrustworthy sources, as these products are likely to contain toxic chemicals.
Vaping: Know Your Chemicals
Apart from vegetable glycerin, propylene glycol, and potential contaminants like heavy metals, you should conduct independent research on the effects and subsequent risks of vaping other substances like CBD, nicotine, and in some cases, THC.
Especially with a combustible ingestion method such as vaping, toxic chemicals are unfortunately something you need to look out for. Users inhale various unknown chemicals when vaping e-liquid from an untrusted source, so try to only buy from trusted manufacturers who have your health and safety in mind.
At CBD Choice, we want to provide users with all the benefits CBD oil has to offer. For some users, vaping CBD can act as an alternative to traditional smoking methods. We believe that vaping devices can play a pivotal role in overcoming the current vape crises, so we only offer a hand-selected inventory of high-quality, trusted CBD vape brands and products.