Should I Steep?
We’re faced with indecision every single day over one thing or another. Fortunately, the question of whether to steep or not, isn’t a particularly painful one.
Steeping e-juice is a common practice among many vapers to improve the taste of the e-liquid and to ensure the best vape possible. There are several methods of how to steep e-juice; some are slow, but more effective while others are fast. In this guide, we will discuss the most popular options.
Steeping vape juice is a way of aging the e-juice to remove any harsh bottled tastes and alcohol, which are volatile. Steeping mixes the VG/PG base, flavorings, and nicotine, and then oxidizes the juice to remove the alcohol. The process of oxidation, while removing the alcohol, also darkens the color of the liquid.
E-liquids are made up of different components such as Vegetable Glycerin, Propylene Glycol, added flavours and possibly nicotine too. Each of these has a different density and to get the best from most e-liquid flavours these components need time to mix at a molecular level. Part of the process of steeping is degasification and evaporation of certain compounds. Increasing the temperature of an e-liquid helps to speed up these elements.
Ultimately the taste achieved from steeping e-liquid comes down to your own personal preference. When you use your e cigarette you might not notice any difference at all, or you might find steeping for weeks has a huge effect on the flavour. As a general rule, most complex blends are believed to taste better for steeping. And different flavour types age for different amounts of time.
How Long Do I Steep For?
Some e-liquids you can vape immediately, others really do get better with some steep time.
DIY liquid is a prime example of this. For some complex blends, steeping changes the flavour entirely. Lending itself to a totally new and unique flavour for the user. Which is probably a big reason why steeping is so popular and people discover new ways to achieve the perfect ratio in their flavours.
In general, more complex blends require steeping for longer. And again steep time is a personal thing but as a general rule: Tobacco e-liquid and menthol e liquid flavours require the least steeping – one to two days. Some can be vaped straight away.
Fruit flavours seem to require a little more steeping, generally three to four days.
Dessert flavours (usually more complex blends) require anything from one week to a month.
There are some steepers who suggest steeping for as long as two months to really bring out the flavours. Still others suggest longer, perhaps up to four months. After steeping, you’ll probably notice that your e-liquid has darkened too. This is a result of the nicotine oxidising.
Generally, steeping involves heating the vape juice, shaking it to induce mixing and exposing it to the air for oxidation. There are many approaches on how to steep e-juice, but the simplest method involves storing the liquid in a dark, cool place for a few weeks, with occasional shaking and exposure to air for oxidation.
Heating the e-liquid in the microwave for a few seconds before shaking can help blend your e-liquid as part of your own “dark cupboard technique”. Be sure to only heat for a few seconds, less than five as extremes of heat can degrade the e-liquid and damage the bottle. Some plastic bottles also release chemicals when heated. So be diligent.
Fill a container with warm water (remember, not too hot). Place the e-liquid bottle in a sealed bag (which will also help prevent destruction of the label) and put it in the water, making sure that all of the e-liquid is covered. Leave it for ten to fifteen seconds. After heating, give the bottle a shake. Repeat this method until you get the desired taste.
Fill the crockpot with water. Place the e-juice bottles in a zip-lock bag, removing as much air as possible. Place the crock-pot on low, and place the bottles in the crock-pot.
Leave for thirty minutes to four hours. Then simply uncap, let them breathe, then re-cap and shake well.
Place the bottle in a sock, tie it, then tumble dry it. IMPORTANT: Don’t use glass bottles on this one – also check the cap is firmly in place.
And just for giggles, here’s a couple more you can try.
Place the e-liquid in a warm car glove box.
Heat rice in a microwave, then place your bottle in the rice until it’s at the right temperature. Shake and repeat.
Let’s Not Forget
Everyone has their own favourite method of steeping and mixing. Try a few of these steeping methods and see what produces the best e-juice for you. After all, it is a matter of personal preference.
If you’re a patient vaper, placing the bottles in your closet and occasionally giving them a shake and a breather, can easily cure your juice. If you are the impatient sort, who likes to vape the new flavors as soon as possible, then one of the fast methods will be more in line with your style. Some of these are very rapid and can produce usable vape juice the very same day. These methods are optimal when you run out of your favorite juice and need a quick refill.
Being able to change your e-juice to a totally new concoction of your own choosing is part of the reason we love vaping the way we do. It gives us choice, lots and lots of choice. It allows us to be the masters of our own design and that is something cigarettes never offered. So, vaping being healthier is great, but there are so many more benefits to be had. We are discovering more reasons to love vaping every single day. Why be a slave when you can be the ruler?