Electric Cigarette Ingredients: The Arcane Concoction

Even though there is considerably more design in the composition of an E-cigaretta opposed to the original tobacco and paper variety, the technology is not that sophisticated. You have a wick, just like you’d find in an oil lamp, and an E-Liquid that is vaporized within the E-cigarette’s battery-operated atomizer and delivered to you in a tasty pleasant aroma.
The biggest mystery surrounding the E-cigarette are the components in the E-liquid, the majority of manufacturers would rather keep hush about their secret corporate recipes. This naturally makes the consumers very curious as to the nature of the smoke they are inhaling. Ads with titles like “natural and artificial flavors” can leave a lot to the imagination, and that’s not exactly comforting.
So what exactly are the ingredients in the E-cigarette refill vials and what are we smoking? This article will explain the particulars of what goes into those pleasant puffs of E-smoke. The information found in here is taken from a thorough online investigation, and although it would be impossible for me to give you the exact ingredients of every e-liquid concoction in the market, it is a safe bet that you are consuming a few of these products with every E-puff you puff.

So without further ado, the E-Liquid ingredients (ordered from most common to least common).


heart-health_300The first ingredient is an old friend from the traditional cigarette. It’s the stuff that gives tobacco its signature kick that smokers just can’t get enough of.

It is also highly toxic. Nicotine can have serious effect on the cardiovascular system as well as hamper with the regulation of glucose in the blood stream. The surgeon general has issued several scathing reviews on this chemical and it’s the best reason not to smoke.

Propylene Glycol

Propylene glycol makes up the majority of the the stuff inside E-liquid. It is an emulsifying agent often used in the food processing industry to carry flavors smoothly. Because of it’s low vaporization point, propylene glycol makes a good base to carry the E-liquid’s flavors and stimulating goodness.

Glycerol or Glycerine

Glycerol (glycerine) is created when fat is changed into soap in the saponification process. The variety found in E-liquids is vegetable based. Glycerol shares many of the emulsifying properties that propylene glycol does. These two components create the thick smooth effect of the E-liquid smoke. Propylene glycol carries the flavor and glycerol makes the smoke fuller.

Propylene glycol has been reported to irritate certain smokers and sometimes manufacturers will leave it out entirely and make purely glycerine based E-liquids.

Vanilla Extracts

best_e-cigarettesVanilla beans can be boiled down in water or alcohol to create pure vanilla extract. These are added to the E-liquid in combination with other ingredients that form a rich aroma in the vapor that smells so much like real tobacco smoke.

Malic Acid

The special ingredient present in so many fruits that feature a tart flavor, is malic acid. This ingredient can be found in naturally large quantities in fruits, wines and is also frequently used in the candy industry for fruit flavored candies.

Malic acid used in E-Liquids adds that similar tart experience to the flavor and also adds to the complexity of the aroma.

MentholMan enjoying smoking an e-cigarette

Menthol is the oil extracted from peppermint plants. Most of us are familiar with the cool soothing sensation of menthol cough drops. Menthol has a cooling effect on contact with the skin as well as mucous lining the lungs.

This is why it is added to the E-liquid, to reduce irritation in the lungs and throat caused by smoking. Certain electric cigarette ingredients contain higher quantities of menthol in order to simulate a menthol cigarette.


This electric cigarette ingredients is used extensively in the cosmetics and perfume industry. It has a pungent aroma of roses and manufacturer included it in the electric cigarette ingredients to put a rosy streak in the experience.

Acetyl Pryazine

You may remember this ingredient from teddy grahams or other cookie products. It’s what gives the grahams their doughy-nutty charm. It is added to the e-liquid to give off a buttery, doughy, yeasty smell to make the aroma smell something like grandma’s kitchen.


Tabanone is a robust component that gives chocolate and tobacco their rich flavor. E-liquids that feature aromas of chocolate and tobacco probably have at least a small amount of tabanone. Besides being used in E-liquids tabanone is another old friend we know well from the food industry.

Ethyl Acetate

We remember this component from Channel No. 5, it’s what gives perfumes, body sprays and deodorants a nice fruity-pear smell. It adds a fruity quality to certain E-smokes.

Ethyl Maltol

This is an artificial flavour we find in many bakery items that have a sweet buttery flavor to them. Just as it makes raisin bread and doughnuts taste better, in E-liquids it adds to the aroma and flavor of E-smoking.


This is an active ingredient in foods that turn brown in the cooking process. You find this most commonly in coffee, wine and fresh baked bread. It has a baked bread smell that is so great in the morning.


When we walk in the movie theater it’s the smell of acetylpryidine that beckons us over to the concession stand and the mountains of hot buttery popcorn. This is used in very tiny amounts to add the scent of coffee, popcorn and roasted nuts to the E-smoke.