What does the PG/VG ratio mean in Vape Juice?

PG VG Ratio in Vape Juice Explained

You have probably already encountered vapers in the vaping world dealing with the ratio of PG to VG in liquid cartridges. This is often a hot topic. However, what is the best ratio of the two main components of vape juice and why do we even need to address it?

Disclaimer: All information provided in this article is for educational purposes only and is not intended to encourage the use of any addictive substances. This content is not suitable for individuals under the age of 18. The article includes subjective opinions of the author. Be aware that nicotine is an addictive substance.

What is PG – Propylene Glycol?

The full term is propylene glycol – a synthetic food additive derived from propylene oxide. You can also find propane diol, dihydroxypropane, methylene glycol or trimethylene glycol on the market. In some instances, due to similarly low melting points, it is also incorrectly confused with ethylene glycol. However, rest assured, ethylene glycol is highly toxic to humans and is therefore not used in the food industry.

We are referring to one of the two basic components of e-liquids in electronic cigarettes. PG is a colourless, somewhat syrupy liquid. It is denser compared to water, but thinner compared to VG. In liquids, it is the carrier of the flavour. Generally, there is a direct correlation – the more PG, the more prominent the flavour of the e-liquid.

Propylene glycol is the reason an electronic cigarette can also “kick” you in the throat. In English, we talk about the so-called ‘throat hit’. This is a phenomenon which tends to affect smokers who are (or have been) used to smoking ordinary cigarettes.

Where is PG used?

The use of propylene glycol is rather extensive. As already indicated, it is frequently found in the food industry. There it acts, for example, as a humidity preservative, thus keeping the food from drying out. It also makes a suitable stabiliser and densifier in a variety of dishes. It is quite a common ingredient in prepackaged foods, pastries, soft drinks and intermediate products.

It is also present in a vast majority of cosmetic and hygiene products – for example, corticosteroids, which are ointments and lotions that are applied to the skin.

What is VG – Vegetable Glycerine?

In this case we are also referring to a colourless watery compound, although vegetable glycerin is a natural substance obtained by heating natural fats rich in triglycerides, typically soybean, coconut or palm oil. In the liquids, it doesn’t serve the purpose of flavour, which is pushed into the background. And although it may not seem like it given this fact, it is still an essential component of e-liquids.

The higher VG ratio is particularly favoured by vapers who like to emit endless vapour clouds. It is the vegetable glycerine – which is much denser than propylene glycol – that is responsible for producing them.

Where is VG used?

Similar to propylene glycol, vegetable glycerin is also extensively used in the food, cosmetic and pharmaceutical industries. It is added to processed frozen foods, such as ice cream, to avoid the development of ice crystals.

It is widely distributed in cosmetic products. In toothpastes, vegetable glycerin protects against the drying and lumping of the liquid. It is also a commonly used ingredient in soaps, lotions and deodorants. It doesn’t cause irritation to the skin – quite the opposite. There are studies about the great moisturizing power of VG. They claim that this glycerin is able to improve the smoothness and elasticity of the skin in just 10 days, even better than hyaluronic acid.

How to choose the PG/VG ratio in e-liquid?

Now we know the meaning of PG and VG. We also know that they are fundamental components of e-cigarette liquids. But let’s talk about how to find the perfect ratio and why is it even important.

Let’s assume that you are an active or passive smoker of regular cigarettes, or that you are a smoker who has given up cigarettes although you enjoyed smoking them. In this case, the ‘throat hit‘ present in propylene glycol, which is also more flavourful, might be important to you.

A higher PG concentration might also be an option if using more subtle devices with smaller atomizers. This is because PG tends to be thinner and can be absorbed quickly into the cotton even in a small coil, so you are not in any risk of drawing in the unsoaked burnt flavour.

Are you more of a vapour lover and like to emit as much vapour as possible? In this case, vegetable glycerin, i.e. VG, should be dominating your e-liquid. As we have already discussed, compared to PG, it is much denser and requires a longer time when soaking into cotton. Because of this, it’s better suited for low-resistance atomizers that provide a sufficient liquid supply.

Although this is certainly not the rule, in general, the more robust atomizers and stronger vape units are more suited to higher VG ratios, often with additional adjustments to meet the user’s needs and preferences.

If you’re not an experienced vaper, are just starting out, or simply just aren’t sure, feel free to turn to the professionals when choosing the right e-liquid for you. A good starting point is the leaflets and manuals for the e-cigarettes themselves, with practical tips directly from the manufacturers.

Examples of PG/VG ratios in vape juice

It’s not surprising that when you purchase a vape juice, you’ll be confronted with this fundamental question – what PG/VG ratio to choose? Blended e-liquids are available in a wide variety of ratios and flavours. While it is true that you can prepare the liquid yourself, we recommend this to more experienced vapers.

  • Ratio 90/10VG – nearly as much vapor (there is still a state of so called Max VP) as you can obtain. Here we cannot speak about any noticeable flavor. This ratio is popular among vapers who are learning how to work with vapor in a spectacular way.
  • Ratio 70VG/30PG – this ratio is among the most popular ones among dense vapour lovers. They often reach for the 80VG/20PG ratio as well, but it has to be said that in this case the flavour of the e-liquid is already noticeably lost. The taste here is more prominent and the vapor clouds are still maintained in a sufficient amount.
  • Ratio 50VG/50PG – the perfect balance between vapour and flavour. Unless you are a firm believer and a vocal supporter of either, you cannot go wrong by having a well-balanced ratio. Especially if you’re using a popular “pod” unit with a power level of up to 80 watts, or less. Be aware that you should not exceed this – the mixture is thinner and can lead to a burnt taste in your mouth at high wattage.
  • Ratio 30VG/70 PG – especially popular among users of smaller devices with small cotton coils. It has quite a high “throat hit”, which can make it feel similar to regular cigarettes. E-liquid like this will still produce enough vapor to make it obvious that you are smoking an electronic cigarette.
  • Ratio 10VG/90 PG – choose it in case you are not concerned about vapour, but rather about flavour. This ratio gives you a more subtle and discreet smoking experience.

Last few words…

We hope that now the PG/VG ratio in e-liquids for electronic cigarettes has become clearer to you. But if you are still unsure about your choice, please do not hesitate to contact us. We’ll be happy to help you find the perfect e-liquid for you!


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About Xmania

Xmania is one of the pioneers of vaping industry in the Ireland. Therefore, we understand and know our customer’s needs. We have stock best vape kits and CBD Products in Dublin, IRELAND.

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