Selecting just five brands of e liquid from the varied and quality selection out there is not an easy task. There has to be a way of narrowing down the list of nominees, so I came up with some filters to help me choose. They included
• Accessibility: were these e liquids easy to get hold of?
• American made: no Chinese e juice here; it’s all quality stuff
• Variety: did the company offer a selection?
• Ratings: every e juice brand here was vetted by multiple vapers/experts
• They don’t cost $1 per ml
That is why your personal favorite might not be on the list and probably isn’t. The brand you thought of makes two flavors of e juice or they are always sold out or they have become boring compared with some of the following options.
I also wanted to clear the table and make a change, offering names to the list that do not always feature as strongly as top brands such as Space Jam, Five Pawns, and Atom Bomb. While those are good labels, their inclusion in top rated lists is predictable. Take a look at this list of top e-liquid brands instead.
The Top E Juice Brands Of 2016
The following e liquids are top-sellers in the US. You would refer to them as “top shelf” e juices known for complexity and variety.
Florida’s VaporFi E cigs was launched into stardom on the strength of their e juices: the thousands of possible flavors customers could buy when they chose their own blends. You could vape tobacco, menthol, fruit, dessert, or a coffee vape. The sky was and still is the limit with this inexpensive but award-winning e juice; a new American classic. They also sell reserve e juices fashioned after iconic desserts and drinks (cherry cola, for instance). Choose those styles for advanced vaping.
Shop Vaporfi Online: http://www.vaporfi.com
California is the starting place for many well-known e juice labels including Cosmic Fog of Orange County. Their goal has always been to fully test then release unique styles, always with an eye for fine quality. Taking up to 10 months to develop and settle on a flavor, it’s no wonder the menu is short at Cosmic Fog.
Lost Fog is their premium line for drippers but the standard assortment is good enough for most systems. Euphoria recalls a kids’ breakfast cereal with candied orange, blueberry, and lemon, plus milk of course. Remember PBJ sandwiches?
Nutz combines strawberry jam with almond butter instead and adds whipped honey crème for a gourmet twist. Cola Gummy should remind you of a certain gummy candy right down to the chewy consistency even though you’re making vapor.
Buy Cosmic Fog Online: http://www.directvapor.com
Finally, here’s another California company bringing you one of the most popular e juices in America. Their standard selection includes Pluto, Astro, and Eclipse. Space Jam recently released a new premium selection too. Pluto deftly delivers three melons with a bubble gum layer and a touch of mint.
Strawberries plus tart green apples are the abiding flavors in Astro. Creamy Prometheus from the new series is a new take on cinnamon e liquid. Tobacco lovers will enjoy the sweetness of Hyperion, also from the cloud-chasing line.
Buy Space Jam Online: http://www.directvapor.com
One Hit Wonder E-Liquid
OHW from LA, California, started making e-liquid in 2015. Their 5 styles of vapor juice are made using Extracted Liquid Nicotine (ELN) and TruNic American-grown nicotine. Their products are low in price but high in quality. Muffin Man was their first flavor followed by Rocket Man, My Man, and Milk Man. Milk Man is a strawberry-cream type of e juice — very trendy — and Rocket Man tastes like a blueberry parfait.
Muffin Man is an apple-cinnamon muffin while My Man tastes like Neopolitan ice cream. With their newest flavor, Police Man, you won’t be able to stop yourself from thinking about stereotypical depictions of cops in coffee shops chomping on glazed donuts. One Hit Wonder is high-vegetable glycerin e juice for high-watt systems.
Buy One Hit Wonder Online: http://www.onehitwondereliquid.com
Kilo is older than One Hit Wonder by one year and an award-winner. Their four flavors are Kiberry Yogurt, Cereal Milk, Dewberry Cream, and Tru Blu. Each one is a vapor-rich experience: creamy with a fruity edge.
Even Cereal Milk will remind vapers of the candied fruit flavor in colorful milky liquid remaining when all their O-shaped cereal was gone. Tru Blu blends blueberries with custard. Vapers will dream of honeydew scooped out, filled with berries, and drizzled with cream when they drip Dewberry. Kiberry Yogurt blends thick, creamy yogurt with strawberry and kiwi: it’s almost health food.
Buy Kilo E-Liquids Online: http://www.vapordna.com
Phillip Rocke E Juice
Phillip Rocke is associated with Gemini Vapors and also his eponymous brand of e juice. By aging his e-liquid, Phillip Rocke creates rich flavor that is superior to the usual steeped e juice, much sought after, but only available in limited amounts. He has wisely created demand by limiting supply.
Crème de la Crème blends coffee with hazelnut cream using real Arabica coffee bean extract to secure an authentic result. Strawberry Shortcake Ice Cream is a twist on the popular strawberries-and-cream style that vapers seem to prefer. His 100% natural flavorings always impress, especially after 2 ½ months of steeping in brandy barrels.
Buy Phillip Rocke Online: http://www.vapordna.com
Unfortunately, there is something fairly predictable about the American e juice industry, and that is the source: most of the best brands come from California. That goes for Ripe Vapes and Mr. Good Vape (both on this list) plus several other excellent brands. This is the only repetitive feature in my list. Ripe Vapes creates a small but solid selection of flavors like VCT: sweet Vanilla Custard Tobacco. Tobacco and an unexpectedly light touch to this vaporous selection provide balance. This could be an all-day-vape in spite of the richness you expect. Other Ripe Vapes styles include Key Lime Cookie and Pear Almond.
Buy Online: http://www.directvapor.com
Johnson Creek Red Oak
The vegetable glycerin-rich choices at America’s oldest commercial e juice manufacturer (located in Wisconsin) have taken the 60W to 200W vaping world by storm. Quality is high among their thick dripping liquids like Silverthorn tobacco. Taste the authentic boldness of pipe tobacco created from a blend of Turkish, Virginia, and Burley leaves. This is an award-winner among many from this long-time favorite brand of e juice.
Shop Johnson Creek: http://www.johnsoncreeksmokejuice.com
Enjoy browsing through the considerable catalogue of goodies offered by Rocket Fuel from Missouri. Their Be Mine Clementine emulates real, easy-peel oranges plus dark chocolate. This blend of dark rich and light sweet flavors is sure to put you in mind of a certain Christmas chocolate named for someone called Terry. Bee Sweet is a unique mixture of honey, brown sugar, and tobacco while Cat’s Meow combines a buttery, creamy cookie with coconut (just like the type grandma serves from a box, only fresher.)
Shop Rocket Fuel: http://www.rocketfuelvapes.com
Mr. Good Vape
Since 2010, this e juice company has sought to be the Godfather of Vaping. While Gary Riddell and Chris Davis (godfathers then) haven’t quite got that far, their products still earn rave reviews. Pistachio Man provides an unusual alternative to other nut flavors. Lovers of green ice cream with niche appeal will enjoy this full-bodied style which creates lots of vapor. Moon Sugar waffle cone with caramel might even make a suitable partner if you cared to combine the two (pistachio ice cream with French vanilla undertones in a sugary cone).
Shop Mr. Good Vape: http://www.vapordna.com
What’s not to like about organic flavoring and huge selection? Virgin Vapors refuses to compromise and neither should you. Try the rich experience of a Kona Coffee Milkshake for much less than you pay for a real one and without the fat. Celestial Honeydew will call to mind a slice of real, ripe, refreshing fruit fresh from a garden vine. A drop of Organic Strawberry Granita is all you need to recall summer in a berry patch eating dark, ripe strawberries never destined to see a punnet. Fans proclaim this strawberry is among the best, leaving nothing artificial and troubling on the tongue after the flavor of fruit is gone.
Shop Virgin Vapor: http://www.virginvapor.com
About Vape Liquid
When you switch from smoking to vaping you could be in for a real treat: dessert, in fact. Your vapor could literally taste like tiramisu without the fat, calories, or guilt but potentially all of the nicotine you are looking for at the same time.
What’s the catch? There isn’t one: put down your cigarette; give up all that acrid smoke and the toxins that go with it; and select a flavor of e juice more like something from a bakery counter or a cocktail bar.
E Juice Beginners
That’s an option that typically arises later in your vaping career. Early vapers usually start with tobacco and menthol-style flavors. Baked goods take a while to wrap your head around and there’s enough change in your life right now to start with.
Giving up those soft little cylinders of death was hard: now someone wants you to give up the flavors you are familiar with? No, a consumer’s first experience of vaping is usually a disposable e cigarette from a garage and it contains a high nicotine level plus tobacco flavoring that emulates a popular brand like Lucky Strike or Marlboro.
These early vapers also tend to like the pre-filled style of e cig even when they switch to cigalikes because they are easier to use. There is no mess and, even though it is cheaper to switch to e liquid and blank cartridges, they prefer the convenience.
The next stage in a vaper’s life from disposable or rechargeable e cigs is the eGo or a similar style of refillable e cigarette. Now they have to refill tanks because there are few eGo type devices with pre-filled tanks available.
Although pre-filled cartridges come in flavors like chocolate and vanilla, it’s still possible you never dabbled. Stick with tobacco and menthol if you want: these are two of the most popular base flavors in the e liquid market and both are widely available if you haven’t jumped to expensive brands yet.
When you start buying e juice, there is a bewildering assortment of labels. Consider cheap options first. Many vapers will tell you they don’t notice the difference between low-cost e juice and designer stuff, but that might have something to do with your palate in the early days. As a smoker, you couldn’t taste much of anything. Now that you are getting your taste buds back it will still be a while before you notice subtle nuances of flavor. Then again, if you are happy with inexpensive e juice, don’t rock the boat by ordering a bottle of stuff that costs twice as much. You might never go back.
Also, many of the gourmet brands don’t feature menthol or tobacco varieties or their flavors veer a long way from traditional pipe, cigar, and cigarette tobacco. If you still aren’t ready for a menu resembling the one at your local ice cream parlor, stick with Halo Purity or V2 Cigs Platinum Liquids.
Both of those brands are relatively inexpensive. The cheapest liquids come from places like Mount Baker Vapor and Vista Vapors. Their clientele stretches across the country and around the world, so there are plenty of opinions and reviews to read online. These companies provide customization but also stock a huge assortment of tobacco and menthol e liquids. When you are ready to experiment, try one of their sample packs containing small bottles of varied flavors. You won’t spend as much per bottle, yet you get the chance to be daring with your e juice. Ignore high-vegetable glycerin (VG) e liquids for the time being. Beginner and intermediate clearomizer or tank coils don’t handle their thicker viscosity so well and it’s not time to think about cloud chasing yet. Build up to that.
Once you get a sense of which flavors appeal to you, start sampling different ones. You can also use your local vape shop’s sample bar as a way to learn how lemon or cherry comes across in this medium as compared with real cheesecake and soda. In a while this could become a hobby: testing “apple” or “peach” as a pastry, fruit, or candy to figure out what the differences are. Categories include candy, breakfast cereals, alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, and coffee/tea.
The Gourmet Line
Now that you’ve been vaping for six months to a year, APVs have started to sound appealing. Their high-tech variable wattage systems are compatible with very low or sub ohm coils and now it’s worth testing some high-VG e juices at last. While you can customize cheap e juice to contain a lot of vegetable glycerin, several brands specialize in creating sub ohm liquids. Vista Vapors makes two series for cloud chasers. So does VaporFi. Halo has recently released their own. Other well-known labels include Charlie Noble, ANML, and King’s Crown. One benefit of all these brands is that they are made in the United States and created in accordance with US standards which are pretty demanding.
E liquid series for sub ohm vapers usually contain just a handful of flavors (Charlie Noble is one exception). They typically blend numerous flavorings in order to achieve a complex mixture that tastes of different elements on the inhale, exhale, and afterwards. These e juices are also more expensive than regular high-propylene glycol (PG) or single-flavor e liquids. You go from paying 40c or 50c per/ml to almost a dollar per/ml in some cases. It all depends on how much of an e juice snob you become.
Save Money and Try E Juice
There is a way to experiment with gourmet and boutique e juice without paying full price, but it’s risky. Join a subscription and every month receive a number of “mystery” bottles. These companies ask good questions about your vaping profile such as the nicotine level you want, flavors to avoid, and ones you really like or don’t mind trying. You can’t return bottles, so if one or half the lot is a dud you haven’t saved anything unless a friend wants your black licorice e juice and you want his cinnamon-menthol. A lot of consumers enjoy the element of surprise.