As e-cigs outsold tobacco for the first time in 2014, the level of constant innovation can be hard to keep up with. Here are our selections for the top five vape trends of the year…
If 2014 was the year in which the cig-a-like began its slide toward obsoleteness, 2015 has been the year of the box mod. A sure sign of the vape industry’s evolution and technological prowess, most box mods are regulated, meaning they contain a chip that enables built-in safety mechanisms, especially short circuit protection that prevents the device from working past a certain resistance, as well as controlling voltage to ensure consistency in the vaping experience. Relatedly, this system offers customization as the voltage can be set according to the coil build rather than having to build according to the established power settings of a mechanical mod.
Box mods typically operate on dual batteries, offering enhanced power and a longer battery life, though there have been recent advancements toward single-battery box mods, such as the much-anticipated BMI Mini. The latest evolution on the box mod scene is the move toward temperature control, offering an increasingly safe and flexible vaping experience.
2015 has been the year to become involved in the defense of the industry to which countless vapers attribute with “saving their lives” or offering them a “second chance.” Advocacy initiatives have sprung up and/or grown exponentially this year… whether you’re a business owner active with SFATA or a consumer involved with CASAA, whether you’re lobbying or sharing your story with the world through various hashtags like #whyivape, there are countless ways to be involved and all vapers are encouraged to stand up, and stand together.
This year there has been a major increase in the awareness and standards surrounding e-juice among members of the vape community. Whereas in the recent past e-liquid made in a garage and sold in small plastic bottles was the norm, DIY e-juice is definitely passé. More and more vapers demand accountability— juice that is made in a lab by qualified professionals following good manufacturing practices, and high-quality ingredients (with lab results to prove the absence of various harmful additives, including diacetyl).
At the very top of the premium e-liquid pyramid is the organic variety. Certified organic e-liquid is regulated by the USDA, a federal agency, ensuring that the facility, ingredients and staff adhere to stringent guidelines. The rise of sensitivities to PG has also increased demand for organic e-juice (all truly organic e-juice is 100% VG), plus the onset of the massively popular cloud-chasing movement calls for 100% VG or max VG e-liquids, as well.
Lower Nicotine Levels
People are not just switching to vaping, they’re often reducing their nicotine intake in the process. Most new vapers (read: heavy ex-smokers) start with high nicotine levels in their e-liquids, but gradually work their way down. 2015 has been the year of 3mg nicotine—this is an absolute must for every e-juice line, and every vape shop would benefit from carrying a variety of brands and flavors at 3mg for veteran vapers making their way down.
The art of vaping has received much attention this year, as the craftsmanship in hardware reaches unprecedented heights. From beautiful bone-carved mods to a mechanical mod from Relik Vapor created from meteorite that is billions of years old; from the pervasive trend of limited-edition stabilized wood box mods, to incredible designs, such as this honeycomb edition Hurakan box mod, it’s clear that craftsmanship is just as important as function to an increasing number of vapers the world over. While most of these mods are high-end, statement-making pieces, there’s now, for example, a company called WÜD selling wood skins that fit some of the most popular box mods—offering a special touch to a piece that won’t necessarily break the bank.