The modern e-cigarette or vape pen was born in 2003 when Hon Lik, a Chinese pharmacist, patented a design for an electronic device that heats flavored liquids to produce vapor. The invention released nicotine without burning tobacco and quickly gained popularity in China when it was introduced to the market in 2004. A global rollout soon followed. In the years since e-cigarette pens have grown in popularity, and by 2019, global sales of e-cigarette devices will have exceeded $15 billion.
What is a vape pen?
Vape pens, sometimes referred to as e-cigarettes can seem challenging to understand. So many different terms, models, and accessories can confuse people new to vape pens. Simply put, a vape pen is an electronic device that heats a liquid containing ingredients such as flavorings and nicotine. The vapor produced is then inhaled by the e-cigarette user, who gets precisely the nicotine they want through the vapor. Unlike traditional cigarettes, no tobacco is burned.
What are the different types of vape pens?
Vape pens were one of the first vaporizers to hit the market, which means you’ll find a wide variety of devices today. See below to see what kinds of vape pens are available today.
Disposable vape pens
Disposable vape pens are complete e-cigarette systems that work right out of the box. They are not designed to be refilled, so once the e-cigarette fluid inside runs out (or the battery dies), the pen is thrown away. Disposable vape pens can be filled with e-liquid (usually infused with nicotine) or cannabis oil, such as THC.
Reusable vape pens
Reusable e-cigarette pen batteries are the most common style of e-cigarette pen. The battery is built into a pen-like chamber, and most are designed to attach to 510 threaded cartridges. These vape pens can be used with disposable, pre-filled cartridges or refillable, reusable cartridges or tanks.
This e-cigarette pen typically uses nicotine-infused e-cigarette oil or cannabis oil.
Dry herb vape pens
You may associate dry herb e-cigarettes with a larger cartridge design, but actual dry herb “pens” can be purchased. They maintain a smaller pen design (although it is still thicker than vape pens for e-liquids) with a chamber for heating and drying the herb. You will often sacrifice chamber and battery capacity for a discreet pen design, so keep that in mind when choosing a device.
Concentrate Vape Pens
Because concentrates do not require a large surface area to heat, most concentrate vaporizers use a pen design. The heating chamber only needs to be wide enough to accommodate the heating coil, although several true vape pens are made specifically for concentrate vaping.
Finally, pod mods are heavy-duty vape pens for heavier vapors. Unlike the larger, bulkier box mods, pod mods offer a slimmer design while still providing plenty of power. Pod mods are much thicker than standard reusable vape pens, but their comfortable cylindrical shape is far less conspicuous than standard box mods.
What are the components of an vape pen?
The components of a vape pen vary depending on the model you are using. Most use a battery, heating mechanism, e-liquid storage, and a vape tip. Open-system e-cigarette pens may have a larger battery and heating mechanism than closed-system e-cigarette pens. Closed systems will always use a cartridge to hold the e-liquid. Learn about closed and open systems here.
How do vape pens work?
No matter which style you use, e-cigarette pens work similarly. The battery powers a heating element (a heating chamber, heating coil, or atomizer) sufficient to heat the supplied substance to produce vapor. The user then inhales the vapor through the mouthpiece.
While the process may vary greatly depending on the specific features a vape pen may offer or the purpose for which the pen is designed, the basic process usually remains the same for most e-cigarettes with a pen design.
Benefits of the Vape Pen
Vape pens offer many advantages that are difficult to match with other designs. Considering purchasing a vape pen, consider some of the following benefits.
Discreet public use
The vast majority of vape pens (including many pod mods) can be concealed in a closed fist. This makes vape pens ideal for inconspicuous public use. The pen design may be a good choice if you need a device to vape an e-cigarette while on the go.
Easy to carry
Most vape pens are detachable and easy to transport. Even if you don’t plan on vaping in public, an e-cigarette pen is great if you want a device that is easy to carry around. Even if your device doesn’t come apart (as most dry herb e-cigarette pens do), their overall design still lends itself to being a convenient travel companion.
Easy to use
Vape pens are easy to use, so beginners flock to them. Attaching a cartridge or loading a heating chamber is simple, and most vape pens don’t come loaded with a full set of complicated features. If you want a quick and easy e-cigarette experience, e-cigarette pens offer an enticing solution.
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