vaping glossary
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If you’re new to vaping, we get it – this stuff can be confusing. Spending time on websites, Reddit forums, and message boards can be like wandering into a foreign country where you don’t speak the language. Vaping is full of lingo, slang, technical terminology, and acronyms. Don’t despair, though – we’ve got you covered. The vaping glossary below will have you speaking the language like a native in no time – even if you don’t know the difference between PG and VG and you think a mod is an adjective for a dapper dude in the 1960s. Also, be sure to bookmark this article – we’ll keep it updated as the language of vaping continues to evolve!

Vaping Glossary

Advanced Personal Vaporizer (APV): Devices that generally feature bigger batteries, the ability to vary wattage and voltage when compared to a traditional e-cigarette.

Adapter: A device with dual threading that allows for the attachment of different kinds of atomizers/cartomizers/clearomizers onto a variety of different batteries.

All Day Vape (ADV): Adjective used to describe an e-liquid that you enjoy so much that you could vape it all day to the exclusion of all other flavors.

Analog :Slang for traditional tobacco cigarettes, cigars, and pipes. E-cigarettes are considered a digital device, therefore the old versions are analog.

Ass Juice: Slang for e-liquid that tastes terrible. Not literally juice from a butt.

Atomizer: This is the technical name for heater coil that warms the e-liquid and turns it into the vapor that is inhaled.


Battery: The power source for an e-cigarette. Arguably the most important component of the device. Available in automatic (they activate when the user inhales) or manual (activates when a button is pressed).

Breathing: Process where e-liquids are left open and exposed to the air in order to burn off alcohol. This is done to produce a better taste.


Cartomizer: A device that is a combination of the atomizer and cartridge. The cartomizer contains the heating coil and the tank – plus they’re disposable.

Cartridge: This attaches to the battery and is where the e-liquid is held. Vapor is created by inhaling through the hole at the top of this disposable component.

Cigalike: Slang term for an e-cigarette that looks like a traditional cigarette. Cigalikes are usually relatively cheap and appeal to new vapers.

Clearomizer: Simply put, this is a large, clear Cartomizer. It features a clear tank, and a heating coil and wick in the atomizer base. These can be re-used, but should be replaced regularly when performance starts to decline.

Cloud Chasing: The act of trying to blow the biggest vapor clouds possible. Some places hold competitions to see who can blow the biggest clouds. Cloud Chasers generally use highly modded equipment to make these large vapor clouds.

Coil: This is the wire that is used to turn the e-liquid into vapor by creating an electrical circuit. Kanthal wire and Nicochrome are the two most common coil materials currently in use.


Disposable: Describes an e-cigarette that is used until it’s out of juice, then discarded completely. No refilling, no modding – just use it and then toss it.

Drip Tip: An accessory for the mouthpiece that allows e-liquid to be dripped directly onto the atomizer or cartomizer.

Dry Burn/Dry Hit: Firing the atomizer without e-liquid. This heats up the atomizer and burns off potential impurities. Used for general cleaning purposes.


E-cig: Shorthand for an electronic cigarette.

E-liquid (E-Juice): Liquid made of water, propylene glycol, vegetable glycerin, flavoring, and potentially some nicotine used in a vape pen or mod. Heating the liquid creates vapor, which the user inhales.

Flooding: Placing too much e-liquid in the atomizer. You can tell when you’ve flooded a device because it will make a gurgling noise.


Gurgle: The sound made by an e-cigarette when there’s too much liquid in the tank’s central tube.

GRAS: Acronym for Generally Recognized as Safe, a phrase used by the FDA to let consumers know that an ingredient or ingredients won’t harm them.


HV: High Voltage – a device that operates above 3.7 volts.


Leaking: When e-liquid is seeping out of the e-cigarette. A variety of factors — including overfilling the e-cigarette, improper storage, damage to the device, or changes in pressure — can cause leaking.

Lithium-Ion Battery: The power source for a rechargeable e-cigarette. The Lithium-Ion is the most commonly used type of battery.

Lung Hit: An inhalation straight to the lungs, rather than held in the mouth.


mg Strength: This is the amount of nicotine in an e-liquid per milliliter. 12mg is 12 milligrams of nicotine per milliliter, or 1.2% nicotine.

Mod: Shortened version of “modification.” A type of e-cigarette you can enhanced by adding on new batteries, tanks, atomizers, etc., often with the goal of improving the performance of the device. Vaping has a huge subculture built around modding.

Mouthpiece: The end of an e-cigarette that the user places in their mouth and inhales through.

Mouth to Lung Hit: A hit taken into the mouth and held prior to transfer to the lungs.


Nicotine Level: The amount of nicotine contained in an e-liquid. Commonly measured in mg/ml.

NRT: Acronym for Nicotine Replacement Therapy.


Ohm: A measurement of electrical resistance. Lower ohm devices have coils that heat up faster and produce more vapor. Clooud Chasers often like to use sub-ohm devices for this reason.


Pod Mod: Vaporizers that use pods containing e-liquid.

PG and VG: Propylene Glycol and Vegetable Glycerin, two of the key components of e-liquid. Varying ratios of these two ingredients in an e-juice affect the flavor, throat hit, and amount of vapor produced.

PV: Abbreviation for Personal Vaporizer. A personal vaporizer features refillable tanks and are larger than traditional cigalikes.


Sub-Ohm: Refers to vaping with a resistance level less than 1.0 Ohms. The benefit of sub-ohm vaping is that it increases the amount of flavor and vapor produced.


Tank: A cylindrical device attached to a personal vaporizer that hold the e-liquid.

Throat Hit: The feeling of vapor hitting the throat when a user pulls on an e-cigarette. Cigarette smokers tend to prefer a smoother, fuller hit.


Vape: The act of smoking an e-cigarette. “I’m going to vape this strawberry cheesecake e-liquid.”

Vape Pen: A personal vaporizer roughly the size and shape of an ink pen.

Vaper: A person who vapes.


Wattage: The amount of heat (raw) used by the atomizer coil to turn e-liquid into vapor.

Wick: The wick is a cord (commonly made of silica cord, cotton, rayon, steel mesh, fiberglass, or ceramic materials) located in the tank cap. It pulls the e-liquid to the heated coil in e-cigarette.

Wire: Commonly used to describe the resistance wire used in building the coils in an atomizer.