Friday, 28 February 2014

The 2 ml cap on cartridges: Only affecting HUGE cig-a-likes?

EU regulators, stay away from my dripper! :)
There has of course been a lot of talk about the TPD the last days, naturally, and a lot of it has been about the 2 ml cap on refillable cartridges. Such a limit on the tank or cartridge size would favour the cig-a-likes that the Tobacco companies are investing heavily in, as these would almost be the only e-cigarettes allowed. Add the advertising ban, that big Tobacco is already used to dealing with, and it would be a pain for others to compete in such a market. Another concern is of course that these (1st generation) e-cigarettes are not as effective as the more advanced ones as shown in this study by Dr. Farsalinos and others: There is 2 problems with this alone:
  1. Less effective e-cigarettes of course means lower chance of successfully managing to quit smoking. And the heavier the smoker, the more severe this effect will be, as these are also the ones that are the most addicted. So this, along with the 20ml/mg cap on nicotine in e-liquids, affects the people that could have benefited the most from switching... in all possible ways.
  2. You would need to carry more e-liquid around. Less effective cigarettes would make vapers use more liquid, and refill more often. Low capacity and low efficiency means more nicotine bottles of e-liquid being carried around, which means less safety. Quite the opposite of what I think was the intention.
So will this cap mean that all the mods and atties we're used to are effectively banned and we'll all end up having to smoke cig-a-likes in 2 years from now? To be honest I don't really think so. For one thing there will be markets selling these, call them what you like... grey or black. But there is also another thing. Have a look at article 20, point 3 a.: This is the only place the 2 ml limit is mentioned in the directive from what I can see. Here is what it reads:
"nicotine-containing liquid is only placed on the market in dedicated refill containers not exceeding a volume of 10 ml, in disposable electronic cigarettes or in single use cartridges and that the cartridges or tanks do not exceed a volume of 2 ml;"
Well, this only says how nicotine-containing liquid is allowed to be sold, doesn't it? So cartridges, tanks and re-buildables with larger capacities can be sold freely as long as they are empty? To me it sure looks like it, but I got to admit I am afraid that there is something in there that I've missed. But then again, have a look at the European Commissions own "E-cigarettes myth buster":
“Why regulate a product that doesn’t even contain nicotine?”
The Directive only covers e-cigarettes which contain nicotine.
Well, most, if not all advanced e-cigarettes are sold empty, not containing a drop of nicotine e-liquid. Actually almost only cig-a-likes are sold pre-filled. So... this 2 ml cap... is it really just banning HUGE cig-a-likes? As I said ... I'm afraid I have missed something, or that the directive will be altered to take care of this, but I'm still going to make sure I get to try some of those Havanas from House of Liquid before 2016.

Thursday, 27 February 2014

TPD split vote WAS allowed by the EU Parlament

MEP Nikki Sinclair
According to MEP Nikki Sinclair a split vote on the TPD was actually allowed by the EU Parliament yesterday, but it was of course then to late. Nikki posted a video on Youtube ( saying that at 10.49 yesterday morning the Parliament had allowed a split vote. But this was just 41 minutes before the vote and on that short notice no lobbying could be done and no information could be given so the vote of course went against us.

This is just another example of the political skullduggery that is going on in the EU Parliament. As Nikki says, the e-cigarettes was put into the TPD "with a spoonful of sugar". The TPD has a lot of useful regulations for example to stop children smoking, which of course is something we all want. So putting the e-cigarette legislation in there is just a way of getting it approved, even though most MEPs (from what I understand) was against it, by piggybacking it to regulations that the most MEPs would vote in favour of. A split vote would have countered this effect. It has been argued for such a split vote for months now, but president Martin Schultz wouldn't listen... until 41 minutes before the vote, way to late for it to become a reality. And Schultz of course knew that, so this is, like I said before just political skullduggery and it shows how the EU Parliament is ignoring the principles of democracy. And the result this time can be that the markets of Big Tobacco and Big Pharma is protected and millions of lives that could have been saved won't be, because the technology that could have ended the Tobacco plague is slowed down substantially. Why they do this, one can only guess... corruption, loss of taxes or just lack of common sense are reasons that comes to mind. We do know that Big Tobacco and Big Pharma is benefiting from this, so it's not very hard to imagine that their shady lobbying tactics have played a great part in this. But one thing is for sure, their reasons are not what they want us all to believe; that they do this to protect public health.

But as I said yesterday: The war is not over. There is no reason for vapers to give up. Remember, most of us don't fight this fight for their own sake, we have already made the switch, and the TPD won't stop us from vaping. But we are fighting for all the smokers that haven't made the switch yet, and for reasonable regulations that will enable them to do this. I believe that if we keep the scientific evidence coming, grow in numbers and continue to work with MEPs and media we will win in the end.

Wednesday, 26 February 2014

TPD approved today: The battle is lost, but the war is not over yet

I'm sad to see that the EU Parliament today approved the revised Tobacco Products Directive, including the dreaded article 18 concerning e-cigarettes. You can read the press release here: This means that we from 2016 will see a lot of regulations that will make the e-cigarettes less appealing and not as effective as today: a maximum permitted nicotine concentration level of 20mg/ml, ban on advertising and labelling regulations, maximum 2ml tanks (that are required to be leak proof) and 10 ml bottles of e-liquid to name a few. All of these regulations that will work against the goal of improved public health and protect the current tobacco and NRT markets. I've written about the consequences of this over-regulating before, and now, sadly the may become a reality: Part 1, Part2, Part 3 and yesterdays post on advertising bans. Also be sure to check out Steve K's Vaping World, and his post on this today. Steve is right... it's a cold day in Europe.

We might have lost the battle, but the war is not over yet. Notice this text in the paragraph in the press release:

Can the rules on e-cigarettes be revisited at a later date?

Monitoring and reporting on all developments relating to e-cigarettes – including market and health related developments – has been built into the new Directive. The information collected will provide a good overview of what additional legislative action, if any, is required, and the Commission will revisit the issue if necessary.

So let's make sure they see that it is necessary to revisit the issue, shall we? The Ashtray Blog has a great post today on the matter as well as some suggestions on what to do to turn this around:

Illustration by the Ashtray Blog

Tuesday, 25 February 2014

Restrictions on e-cigarette advertising forces advertisers to target everyone

I was reading Clive Bates' letter to Dr Nathanson of the BMA (British Medical Association) today and I think he makes some excellent points when it comes to a ban, or restrictions on e-cigarette advertising (scroll down to point 8).

The reason for banning cigarette advertising is quite obvious, as it is a product that kills a lot of it's users, but as Bates points out, this is not the case with E-cigarettes. Bates says that banning e-cigarette advertising just gives Big Tobacco the upper hand, since it effectively will protect the cigarette market. In addition to that "advertising bans favour businesses with established distribution chains and experience of promoting their products without the benefit of advertising – namely tobacco companies", Bates writes. He suggests that if restrictions beyond the standard advertising code is necessary (which I don't think he feels), it should be in the form used to control alcohol advertising. So a ban on e-cigarette advertising, like we have in Norway right now, will only help Big Tobacco in one way or the other. But what about restrictions? Well of course the e-cigarette ads shouldn't target children (no advertising should), I think we all agree on that. But what about other restrictions?

In the US, for now, advertising is legal as long as it doesn't make any health claims. That means that they have taken away the strongest argument that can be used to target smokers specifically, which I think is what e-cigarette advertising should do. So what happens then? Well, they have two options: Don't advertise, or target everyone, not only smokers. Figuring out what they will choose isn't exactly rocket science. So this restriction on e-cigarettes will effectively make e-cigarettes more attractive to non-smokers. Somehow I don't really think that is what the health authorities want. Putting restrictions on e-cigarette advertising in this way is a bad idea. The advertisers will always find a way around the restrictions, and it will probably end up targeting a lot of people presenting e-cigarettes as trendy lifestyle products, making them very attractive to young people, non-smokers as well as smokers.

Monday, 24 February 2014

I love vaping, and I don't want to quit

Before the weekend I think there was some panic spreading on twitter regarding some change in the TPD that seemed to be a ban on flavouring in e-cigarettes. I didn't really have the time to look into it then, as I was on kind of a mini-vacation this weekend. So I went looking for some info today and it seems to me that it's not about banning flavours anyway but rather a ban on flavour labelling, which of course is totally unreasonable and according to Clive Bates also not really the intention. Reading this article,, it looks more like a mistake that has been fixed now, at least for e-cigarettes.

But this got me thinking a bit. What is it with vaping that keeps me from going back to smoking? Why is vaping so much more effective than chewing nicotine gum? Even though they both give me the nicotine I'm addicted to, vaping gives me a whole different experience and satisfaction. I've realized I wasn't only addicted to nicotine, I was addicted to smoking. By that I mean the whole experience of smoking, not only the nicotine but I was psychologically addicted to the ritual as well. And after failing to quit by nicotine gum, and then succeeding (easily) to quit by e-cigarettes, I've realized that the addiction to the ritual is just as difficult to get rid of as the addiction to nicotine, at least it is for me. And vaping gives you the opportunity to keep that ritual, and the nicotine, without destroying your body. But this really don't explain why I keep vaping and don't go back to smoking. I mean the smoking of course also gives me the nicotine and the ritual right?

There are several reasons for that: A huge improvement in my health, I don't smell like shit any more, my clothes don't smell like shit any more, I don't harm others with my habit, and I don't have to go outside in the cold to vape. But all these benefits I would have gotten from chewing gum as well, wouldn't I? So why did I go back to smoking then? One reason was the ritual, as I said above, but also the taste of a cigarette. It used to be fantastic. Used to be... now they taste like shit. The taste of Scopes Raspberry on a Hellfire Mega or some El-toro in the mini is gazillions of times better than the taste of a cigarette. And I can experiment and find new flavours and new equipment that gives me even more flavour and vapour (yeah I'm a geek). So the vaping actually gives me a whole lot in addition to the ritual and the nicotine. The nicotine gum (and other NRT) only takes something away. That is the main reason for their success in my opinion. It's important that regulators are aware of this as well, so they don't regulate e-cigarettes in such a way that they also end up only taking stuff away, cause then they will be just as useless as gum and patches.

Now some anti-e-cig people would probably say I just proved their point. E-cigarettes doesn't really help me quit, it just let's me continue my addictions. Well, they are right. But why is that such a bad thing? I'm also addicted to coffee in the morning (you want to tread lightly around be before I've had my coffee in the morning), not only the caffeine but also the ritual of having a cup of coffee in the morning while reading the morning newspaper. No one objects to that. I can also experiment with new coffee making equipment and new flavours. So the addiction to the ritual of coffee in the morning, for me and probably millions of others, is quite similar to the addiction to the smoking ritual. So what is it that makes the smoking ritual something we want to get rid of? Why don't we want to get rid of coffee in the morning? Of course this is because the smoking ritual is associated with smoking (obviously), which is bad for your health (and other peoples health as well). But the ritual in itself won't hurt anyone, neither yourself nor the people around you. So no, vaping doesn't help me to get rid of my addictions, it just gives me the opportunity to continue without killing myself, and others around me. That is why they are so successful. I think most human beings have some ritual they are addicted to, coffee in the morning, reading a book before going to sleep, chewing gum, different kinds of food that "belongs" to different situations. Most of them harmless, and therefore accepted by the public. Try to take one of your rituals away and you'll end up just as grumpy as a smoker without access to cigarettes. The ritual of smoking, and vaping, is not what harms people, and therefore not what you want to get rid of. What e-cigarettes actually do is not only letting you keep that ritual, but it even makes it better. Rather than just taking something away, it gives something more. And that is the "secret" to their success.

I love vaping, and I don't want to quit. And that is the reason I managed to quit smoking.

Friday, 21 February 2014

Blog suggestion: The Ashtray Blog (and please answer the poll :))

I'm going away on a mini-vacation so there won't be any posts here this weekend. So I'd like to recommend another blog that I find really good: The Ashtray Blog. Lots of great posts there on vaping politics and science, and for new e-cig-users they have some great E-cigarette Academy with both user guides and loads of useful information about vaping and e-cigarettes. A great place, hereby highly recommended by the Vaping Giraffe. Hope you all have a great weekend, and I would be very happy if I come home to loads of answers to the poll on the right.

Thursday, 20 February 2014

What's up with all the clones?

Lately I have been reading a lot of forums, and I'm a bit sad to see that in some forums, there is an attitude that cloning high-end mods is ok. A lot of people are saying that the clones are working just as well as the original and encourages others to get the clone instead for this reason. This is not ok! Forum administrators should stop this, but instead I some time see them being part of it. They should know better.

Buying clones really damages the market. Why? Well, someone has used a lot of time and resources developing the original product. When the design is done, reproducing the actual mod or atomizer is often not very expensive, especially if you have access to machines doing this for you. So when you feel you are paying a lot more for a mod than you think it costs to produce it, remember that you are also paying the designer, or artists as some of these modders actually are, back for the time and money he or she put into designing the product. The "cloners" have STOLEN the design and are profiteering on other peoples hard work. So when you buy a clone you are enabling and encouraging theft of other peoples work, and this will eventually put the original designers out of business.
This means less designers, less cool mods that you can buy and the quality of the mods will be shit. Cause if you think people who steal others work really cares if your new mod works for more than 2 weeks, or even if it works out of the box, you're wrong. They only care about your money, like any other criminal. So stop encouraging this people, and stop buying clones!

Wednesday, 19 February 2014

Juice review: Lime Sparkle by Fair City Vapes

It's been a while now since I first tried out sweb and rockchefs creations for the first time. Due to health issues their webshop has been closed for a good while, but I contacted sweb and he was nice enough to mix up a bottle of lime sparkle for me. He also says the shop will open again, but when this will be is not decided yet. Thanks sweb :)

This is a juice that is loved by a lot of the vapepit members, and there is a reason for that. It's a lovely, very natural lime juice that is easy to like (and get addicted to). Just sweet enough to remind me of some kind of lime candy I've tasted (but can't remember which one), And it leaves a sparkling sensation on your tongue, hence the name I guess. It almost feels like vaping 7up or Sprite, just a bit more lime and less lemon. When I first tried out this juice I tried it in a GP Spheroid, but this time I tried it in the Hellfire hybrid. It has got some more bite on mesh as you would expect but it was by all means very much alive in the spheroid as well. Personally I prefer it on mesh but that's just a matter of personal taste I guess.

There is actually not much more to say about this juice, it's not a complex blend of flavours, just pure lime with the perfect amount of sweetness and some mystical sparkle added. And that is the best thing about it. This is definitely one to try.

As I said, the Fair City Vapes webshop is closed at the moment, but you can send an email to Sweb if you want to buy some and if he's got the time he'll probably make you some: faircityvapes(at) (not checked every day so be patient). Sweb was also nice enough to offer some 12mg samples for my readers. Use the contact form on the right if you'd like a sample and I'll send you one if you're quick enough.

Tuesday, 18 February 2014

The consequences of over-regulating, Part 3: A survey among vapers

The first time I wrote about the consequences of over-regulating ( I said I think a lot would revert to smoking, but that most would try to continue and that we'll get a black market, a market lot less safe than a properly regulated one. This was based on common sense, and later on supported by the experiences Finland have had with the ban of snus that I wrote about in the second part ( Now my fellow blogger James Dunworth, who runs the Ashtray Blog, has done a survey asking over 1600 vapers some questions about what they would do in case of a EU E-cig ban, and why they think the EU would want a ban. Read his blogpost about the survey here: The results of the survey is presented in the infographic below.

7 Consequences of an EU Ecig ban
Infographic by
These numbers gives us a pretty clear picture of what would be the consequences of an EU e-cig ban for the current vapers in the UK: A shorter life for a lot of them, and basically criminalization of the rest. The fact that 88% (!) believes the EU wants to protect tobacco tax revenues and just 3.1% believe they to it for the right reason, to protect public health is in my opinion just sad... most of all cause I think they are right. But as I wrote about yesterday, not all countries are dependent on the tobacco tax, but I fear most politicians believe they are.

Monday, 17 February 2014

Tax on e-cigarettes, what will governments do?

On Saturday I wrote about one smokers wanting to save money, and ended up saving their own life: In conclusion better health and better personal economy is two long term effects of vaping that we can be sure of. But as you can see this is about the personal economy of the individual, but what about the country's economy? The country will loose a lot of tax income if people stop smoking, but will the money they save on health care for these smokers make up for the loss? This article,, discusses that issue in the UK and US, and it shows that the US would benefit economically if everyone stopped smoking while in the UK the effect would be the opposite.

The Norwegian Directorate of Health published some numbers on this in 2011: (the compete report can be found here: The annual income from tobacco taxes was 8 billion NOK (100NOK is around £10), but the annual cost estimates related to tobacco smoking varies from 8 billion to 80 billion depending on how you calculate this. In the lowest estimate only health care costs and production losses due to sickness and early death is considered, while in the higher estimates they also take into account the value of lost life years and reduced quality life years. The report also estimates that the reduction in tobacco smoking we have had in the last 20 years here in Norway represents savings of around 25 billion NOK annually. Further reduction would give savings on around 2-3 billion NOK per percentage point. So here in Norway we are not dependent on the tax income from tobacco. However I doubt this is something that Norwegian politicians have thought about. The percentage of cigarettes smoked in Norway that was actually bought in Norway is sinking towards 50% (, which means the tax income could be a lot more. The reason for this is of course that the taxes on tobacco is really high... so actually the politicians may have put us in this position unintentionally?

I totally agree with what Karl Erik Lund said in the interview I posted here in the beginning of January; the ethical side of this of course needs to be the basis of a reasonable health policy. He says such calculations are absurd in this matter, but I think they have some relevance anyway. The reason, as shown in the article I mentioned in the beginning, is that some countries have actually made themselves dependent on the tax income from tobacco. This is definitely not good. As we have seen above, this should not be the case in the US and Norway as these countries will benefit economically from this, but in the UK it becomes a problem. Their government has already made the mistake and the money has to be taken from somewhere. So something has to be done about this, and taxing e-cigarettes would be as unethical in the UK as it would be in the US and Norway. So it is important that the UK government is aware of this and take measures to turn the situation around NOW so that they are not depending on tax income from tobacco before it's to late. These calculations should have been done long time ago, because making one self dependent on such "sin-taxes" will always lead to economical problems eventually. The UK government, if they don't act quickly, will end up in a very difficult situation: One option is to place taxes on a product that will save millions of lives, and they will have a hard time explaining that to the public. Another option would be to increase other taxes, meaning the whole public (not only smokers) would have to pay for their earlier mistake. I wonder how they are going to solve this one... and if they are able to correct, and learn from, their mistake. I don't think it's impossible, but they do need to be aware of these numbers to fix it. And they do need to keep the ethics their to top priority to avoid getting into trouble again. Explaining why you place taxes on a life-taking product is easy, doing the same on a life-saving product is a totally different ball game.

Sunday, 16 February 2014

Swedish customs looses in court

A month ago I wrote a post on Swedish customs stopping e-liquid imported by a company called Trade Team, at the border and "administratively placing it into care". This was the second time they had done that. The first time they had claimed it that the e-liquid was a pharmaceutical product, but a court decided that the e-liquid's classification was yet undecided and that Trade Team could continue until that was decided in court. This has not been done yet. The second time Swedish Customs (claiming to be operating on their own, not influenced by the Swedish Medicines Agency) used a new reason: "administratively placing it into care". Again Trade Team complained, of course, and now a court has finally decided. I'm happy see that Swedish customs lost again and has to release the e-liquid to Trade Team

Morten Paulsen, the owner of Trade Team, says it is ridiculous that they keep on doing this and that it's a waste of money and time. He also claims that it is the Swedish Medicines Agency that is pushing customs to do this, but both the agency and customs deny this and say that customs is acting on their own. I'm having trouble believing this as customs argue in court that e-cigarettes "usually" should be handled as medicines, and refers to the fact that the medicines agency believes this is a pharmaceutical product. But this is yet to be decided by a court.

Paulsen says that his company has lost around 400.000 SEK (around £40.000) on the case in addition to expenses for lawyers. He is now demanding half a million SEK back from the Swedish customs. Neither Swedish customs and the Swedish Medicines Agency wants to comment the case when "Sydsvenskan" asks for a comment, but the agency says in an email that their classification of the products has not change. Lets hope they keep loosing in court then.

Thanks to Dan (@danmacdonald73) who made me aware of this article via Twitter. I bet Grizewald who made me aware of the case in the first place is also happy to see this, and even though it is kind of a temporary reprieve for vaping in Sweden I think it looks like it's heading in the right direction.

Saturday, 15 February 2014

Smokers wanted to save money, ended up saving their own lives

This week we had a smoker coming up from the main office to work on a project with us. At our office we only had 2 smokers, me being one of them and we've both switched to e-cigarettes now. Well at least I threw away the fags for real, the other guy I think is still smoking a bit. But anyway, I joined this guy from the main office, an Englishman from Bolton, whenever he went out for a smoke and solved a lot of problems out there. I asked him a bit if he had considered switching to e-cigs, and we talked a bit about it, and he had an interesting take on why he the UK has such a high number of vapers: The economic crisis, which hit the UK pretty hard I believe. It hit me that when I first started vaping, I thought quite a lot about how much money I'd save. Cause yeah... it is, or at least could be if you're not a nerd and end up buying all these high-end mods like me, damn cheap compared to smoking. He told me a pack of cigarettes is close to £8 in the UK now... almost as expensive as in Norway (around £8 when I quit, probably around £9-10 now), which is considered to be the most expensive country in the world. And I smoked a pack a day. Now I vape like 3-5ml a day, and I pay in the area of £20 for a 50ml bottle of e-liquid, which means I get by on around £2 a day if I add the cost of the occasional batteries and other supplies. I'm sure you can get by on £1 a day with my vaping rate as well if you want to. Mix your own juices and you can probably go even lower. So what does that mean? Well it means that a lot of people are now in a better economical shape than they would have been without e-cigarettes, AND they might just have saved their own life as a side-effect. There is a lot of talk about uncertainty of the long term effects of vaping. Well here is 2 long term effects for you that there is no doubt about: Better health, and better personal economy.

Friday, 14 February 2014

New systematic review by Dr. Farsalinos published

Dr. Konstantinos Farsalinos and his co-author Prof. Riccardo Polosa published a new study in the journal "Therapeutic Advances in Drug Safety" yesterday called "Safety evaluation and risk assessment of electronic cigarettes as tobacco cigarettes substitutes: A systematic review". They have studied 97 other chemical, toxicological and clinical studies on the safety and risk profile of e-cigarettes. The presentation of the study you can find at and you can read the whole study here: (register for free to download the PDF).

They conclude, in short, that even though it is obvious that there may be some residual risk associated with electronic cigarette use, they are far a less harmful alternative to smoking. There has been found some toxic chemicals in e-cigarette vapour but at levels substantially lower than in cigarette smoke and comparable with the amounts found in pharmaceutical nicotine products. They conclude that "Electronic Cigarettes are a revolutionary product in tobacco harm
reduction" and that "Due to their unique characteristics, Electronic Cigarettes represent a historical opportunity to save millions of lives and sgnificantly reduce the burden of smoking-related diseases worldwide"

I'm also glad to notice they have come to the same conclusions as I had ( regarding some of the reports used by some anti-e-cig-organizations (and regulatory authorities) to back up the claim that e-cigarettes are a gateway to smoking. They've referrenced a couple of American and also a South Korean study of experimentation with e-cigarettes and say that the findings here does not support the claim that e-cigarettes are a gateway, but rather they are showing that experimentation with e-cigarettes are done by mainly by smokers. "There is no evidence indicating that they could be a gateway to smoking", they write, and continues "It is promising to see that penetration of EC use in youngsters is virtually nonexistent, especially when you take into consideration that there is currently no official regulation in most countries to prohibit the access to ECs by youngsters."

Again Dr. Farsalinos and his co-workers provides us with extremely valuable, thorough and unbiased research. Thank you!

Thursday, 13 February 2014

The consequences of over-regulating, Part 2: Real life example from Finland

A couple of days ago I wrote about the Norwegian Cancer Registry claiming that Finland had managed to lower the number of lung cancer cases without the use of snus and e-cigarettes ( I found Finnish vaper jariollikka's comments on this post very interesting. According to his experience and the statistics he provided the use of snus in Finland has not dropped after it was banned in 1995. The sale of snus on the Finnish mainland that was banned in 1995, but it was still legal to import it from Sweden or other neighbouring countries, pretty much the same rules as we have both in Finland and here in Norway on e-cigarettes today. In 2010 Finland also banned importing snus via mail, so now you have to travel to Sweden to get some legally. As I commented on that case it's very interesting to see that the use of snus in the youngest group presented the statistics (, look at table 19) seems to get a boost in 2012. This is the weakest group economically and hence the group most likely to turn to the black market for economical reasons. And as jariollikka says, the black market in Finland is thriving and even the police that is supposed to stop this is also buying snus from the black market.

As I mentioned in the first post I wrote about this, a black, and of course totally unregulated, market rising will be one of the consequences of over-regulating a product that is already used by millions of people. The fact that both snus and e-cigarettes are products that the public believe, and science has shown, is life-saving for it's users will amplify this effect. So what was the effect of banning the use of snus in Finland in 1995? This article,, published in 2006 on adolescent snus use in Finland 1981-2003 aims "to study changes in adolescent snus use from 1981 to 2003, the effects of the total snus sales ban (1995) and snus acquisition". It concludes that the ban did not stop the use of snus, but instead the already increasing use they had in 1995 continued. It also concludes that the eradication of snus is very difficult, if not impossible in Finland as long as import for personal use is legal and it is still sold in the neighbouring countries (Sweden and Estonia). It shows that instead of slowing down the increase in popularity of snus among 16-18 year old boys in 1995, the highest numbers since 1981 were seen in 4-6 years after the ban. There is several possible explanations for this: It was still easily available due to the fact it was sold on the ferries between Sweden and Finland, increased discussion in the media, increased awareness of the health benefits and price. The fact that it was now forbidden may also have made it more attractive to youth (as I've argued before as well).

The study also shows very clearly how the snus black market in Finland is thriving. Have a look at Table 3 in the article. Although most people say they get snus from friends, family or when travelling to Sweden or Estonia, in the group of daily or occasional users 23.7% say they also get it from "under the counter" in kiosks, stores or service stations and 3.4% also get it from "street vendors". These are the ones I would definitely count as the black market, but also "strangers" and "somewhere else" could be a part of it. So one of the consequences of banning snus in Finland has been a black market. It's also important to notice that the wanted effect, that the use of snus would go down, was not achieved.

One statement in the study caught my attention especially: "In Finland, price policy as a “regulating instrument” is not available because the product is not legally sold". This is is a very important point: You have no way of regulating a black market. Not with prices, not with age-limits and not with safety control of the products. And as the study shows: "Even the youngest age groups are interested in snus if available". The findings leading to this statement is that they observed 12-year-olds experimenting and 1 in 10 of the 14-year-olds had tried it. 

I think this study is an excellent example of what will happen if you over-regulate a popular product with a large user base, that is also believed to be life saving by the majority of the public: You will end up with a totally unregulated black market and possibly dangerous products, more popularity among teens and even children and essentially no control of the situation. Can the EU Parliament learn from Finland's mistake?

Wednesday, 12 February 2014

New survey by Dr Farsalinos submitted for publication

I'm happy to see that Dr. Farsalinos announced yesterday that the worldwide survey of more than 19000 users concerning characteristics, side effects and benefits of e-cigarette use, has been submitted for publication. It looks like the results should be very interesting reading. I notice especially that there is also subjects that were not smokers at the time of e-cigarette use initiation participating in the study. The hints he gives us on the results, 81% of the subjects actually managed to quit smoking completely and the rest cut down their smoking drastically, is very interesting indeed. Earlier this week I wrote about a study that reported a 19.9% success rate ( for quitting by using e-cigarettes. That is a huge difference, actually their number is close to the 80% I've experienced myself. Of course, as Dr. Farsalinos says as well, the participants in such a survey are expected to be very dedicated so this number is expected to be higher than with the general population, but still I think this shows that if you really want to quit there is a great chance that e-cigarettes will help you. Again, I can use myself as an example of this. I really wanted to quit smoking, and I tried several times, but it was when I discovered e-cigarettes I managed to do it. And it even became the easiest thing in the world.

Really looking forward to reading the complete article when it's published. I also applaud Dr. Farsalinos and his team for their efforts to present the data in an objective way. I know I probably come across as very biased in this matter myself, I find it hard not to be when I look back at my own vaping adventure, so you'll just have to excuse me I guess. However I do try to make an effort at finding unbiased research when writing this blog, and I do believe Dr. Farsalinos and his team provide some of the best unbiased research available. Keep up the good work doctor!

Tuesday, 11 February 2014

Norwegian Cancer Registry says Finland has better results than the rest of Scandinavia but without e-cigarettes?

I was looking for an article I knew I had seen earlier where the Norwegian Cancer Registry was encouraging us to listen to real science instead of the scientist at SIRUS, because I wanted to write a post on that. But I couldn't find it any more. Looks like it has been removed for some reason. But I found something else that I found interesting:
In this article, on the Norwegian Cancer Registry's web-pages, dr. Tom K. Grimsrud writes about statistics regarding lung-cancer in Scandinavia. He says that the governments has done a good job in preventing that young people starts smoking, but still the rate of lung-cancer is still to high. He says the rate is slowly decreasing for men between 50 and 60 but among older people the rate is still rising. So to stop this, we need not only to prevent that young people starts smoking, but we also have to get the older ones to stop. And then he says that Finland has managed this, but Norway is still behind. This graph is shown to illustrate this:

That is good news for Finland, and I really thing dr. Tom K. Grimsrud is on the right track here. Getting people to stop smoking is just as important as preventing people to start. I mean, this is one of the main reasons I advocate for e-cigarettes, they are a fantastic opportunity, especially for long time smokers. I think that the longer you smoke the more addicted you get, not only to nicotine but also to the ritual of smoking. In addition to that, the pressure from your surroundings to stop smoking gets lighter by age. People start giving up on you and think it is more important that you stop smoking the younger you are. But our dr. Tom here doesn't like the e-cigarettes much. He even says that Finland has managed this without the use of e-cigarettes and snus (Swedish smokeless tobacco). But how can he say that? There is no reference to any source for this information. And Finland, as far as I know, have the same laws regarding e-cigarettes as we have in Norway (, which means you can order e-liquid with nicotine from abroad for personal use. And the graph shown here shows that Finland managed this before 2008, at which point snus was still legal in Finland (I think it was banned in 2010).

I totally agree with dr. Tom K. Grimsrud on that it is important to take a look at older groups as well. It's great that he puts this on the agenda. And I don't mind agreeing to disagreeing regarding the way to get there. But I don't think it's right saying that Finland has done this without the use of e-cigarettes. There is, as far as I've been able to find out using google, nothing that indicates that e-cigarette use in Finland is less than the rest of Scandinavia. I think dr. Tom K. Grimsrud should present some kind of evidence before making such a claim. When doing it this way, throwing out claims without any source reference, it looks as just badmouthing e-cigarettes, and using irrelevant data to do so. Any comments by people who know the Finish vaping society and market better than me are more than welcome.

Monday, 10 February 2014

Lots of demonizing misinformation in Norwegian online science magazine

This article was published on the 10th of February on It's apparently written by a journalist in the Danish online science magazine and translated, but I can't find the original article. It seems to be part of an article series called "Ask a researcher", and it's an answer to a reader that sent them an email asking these questions: Is there something in e-cigarettes that is bad for your health? And if so, how dangerous are they compared to regular cigarettes?

Actually what is a bit amazing here is that some of the sources they give us is proof that some of the claims in the article is just not true. I'm not going to go into the whole article, but I just feel I have to comment on a couple of the claims made by a couple of the doctors interviewed there.

Cheif consultant in the Danish health and medicine Authority (Sundhedsstyrelsen), Jørgen Falk talks about the ingredients in e-liquid. He says that PG and glycerin are the main ingredients and these are substances that are related to what is used as antifreeze in cars (!). Well, he's right though. Both has been used as NON-TOXIC antifreeze:, but are not very effective, and not really what it's mainly used for. He does actually mention that it's used in food as well, but dragging this antifreeze purposes into the discussion... that's is just scaremongering as it makes people think it's toxic like methanol. Although he admits that e-cigarettes damages the lungs a lot less than normal cigarettes, he continues claiming that there is not enough research on the long term effect. Again, he want's to close the fire-escape cause the stairs might be a bit slippery, and he has apparently not read the research that is available. 

Then there is this Chief doctor, Charlotta Pisinger, claiming we don't know the long term effect of inhaling PG, which she says is usually about 90% of the e-liquid. How a Chief doctor can say this, and claim there is not enough long-term research is beyond me. The research on inhaling PG started in the 1940s! I mean it is a substance used to clean the air in hospitals, it's actually approved by the FDA for that very purpose. So this is just not the case... we know exactly how inhaling PG works. I'm sorry Charlotta but this statement to me makes me question all the other statements you make as well. Please read this:

The last chief doctor, Philip Tønnesen, who is actually a researcher himself (the others are just collecting other peoples research, and are not doing a very good job as you can see), is not that sceptical. He is convinced e-cigarettes are a lot less harmful than cigarettes. He encourages the use of common sense and urges us to look at what e-cigarettes actually contain instead of waiting for long-term research on e-cigarettes in general. So far so good, but then even he manages to make an outrageous claim: "The research that is available to today does not indicate that e-cigarettes are especially effective as smoking-cessation remedies". Ok? One of the sources given in the article is this: Lets look what they write in the conclusion of this 24-month prospective observational study: "In conclusion, persistent long-term modifications in the smoking habit of smokers not intending to quit can be attained by using e-Cigarettes. This behaviour could be sustained over a prolonged period of time by advancing to newer more efficient models, which were well tolerated by users. Although not formally regulated, the e-Cigarette can help smokers unable or unwilling to quit to remain abstinent or reduce their cigarette consumption and currently may represent the ultimate tobacco cigarettes substitute.". Maybe the journalist that wrote this article should have shown that to Dr. Tønnesen, just as an example?

Saturday, 8 February 2014

E-cigarettes proven to be the most effective way of quitting

A couple of days ago I wrote about the consequences of over-regulating e-cigarettes and that you really only need common sense to figure that one out. But, as we all know not everyone will listen to common sense, so some times it's nice to get some empiric evidence to back it up with right? My common sense, and my own experience have already convinced me long ago that e-cigarettes are the most effective way to stop smoking. I know a lot of people that has tried over the counter NRT, but I don't know anyone who succeeded. I know some people who have tried cold turkey, and a couple of them have succeeded. But out of the people I know that has tried with e-cigarettes, only one of them is still smoking cigarettes today... my mum :) To be fair I only know 5 people who have tried quitting with e-cigarettes but when combining that 80% success-rate with my own experience, I figured that this had to be the best way of quitting pretty quickly. And now, I have science to back that up as well: This study shows the same results that I have observed. NRT is the worst with a whooping 10.0% success rate. Even cold turkey is better with 15.1%, but on top of course: the e-cigarette with 19.9%.

Still it doesn't quite fit with the 80% I have seen around me though. Personally I do believe this is due to the fact that there is a huge amount of different e-cigarettes, and a huge difference in quality, flavor and vaping experience among these. I think I've told you earlier how easy I think it was, but I should add that I had a couple of tries before I succeeded. First with some crap from dealextreme, that tasted awful, then some ok ones I bought in Norway, that had no nicotine. But when I finally found some good quality ones with decent vaping experience (at least it was more that sufficient at that time), an Ego-T set from Totally Wicked, it was in fact very easy. And I think this is a key to success with the e-cigarette as well. You need to be aware of this, and that you might have to try some different models, and some different e-liquids, before you find the one that is right for you. So you need a little bit of patience, and with some help from and experienced vaper who knows the devices and can point you in the right direction, the chance of success will improve a lot.

So why couldn't my mum quit? Well, I think it was a combination of things. She is dead scared of computers so she was not able to order more e-liquid or e-cigarettes when the one I bought her was empty. I might have missed a bit when opting for cartos as these require some patience to fill. And I'm not sure she liked the taste of any of the e-liquids I bought her. Different people, different taste. But most of all, I think that she doesn't really feel they are safe. She often asks me if this is really better than smoking. And that brings me to my final point... all of these reasons why she failed to quit can be addressed by good regulation. Good regulation would make her feel safer and it would enable her to go try and buy so she would be able to find the device that fits her needs and to find an e-liquid she likes. With reasonable regulation the shitty devices would also disappear, and I am sure that we would see a totally different rate of success in the future.

Friday, 7 February 2014

Know your enemy!

I've mentioned earlier that I'm having a hard time understanding why the Cancer Society and other anti-smoking organizations are demonizing e-cigarettes. One would think that this kind of organization would be advocating for the e-cigarette as they are advocating for harm-reduction and NRT. The fact some of them even admits that the e-cigarette is considerably safer than normal cigarettes makes this even more strange. Why do the ones that should have been a friend, now appear to be an enemy?

But are these organizations the real enemy, or are they just marionettes? In October last year German TV-station WDR aired a piece on lobbyists, roughly translated and published here by Christopher Snowdon. It shows us who the sponsors of the SmokeFree Partnership ( are, and guess what... they are pretty powerful friends to have: Johnson & Johnson, Novartis, GSK, Pfizer. All big pharma companies. Maybe that explains why this organization, that claims "the tobacco pandemic is nurtured by a global industry (editor: Big Tobacco) which transcends national and regional boundaries" and have put "Flexible and Innovative" as one of their key values, is still trying to get the e-cigarettes effectively banned? So these guys, that are trying to make themselves look like David fighting Goliath (big Tobacco), are just big pharma's lobbyist in the European Parlament. And there are more like them. Just have a look at the list of anti-smoking organizations, that opposed e-cigarettes, that received money from Pfizer during 2011 and 2012:

But so what? Isn't it big pharma just trying to help, getting rid of the tobacco pandemic, by creating NRT products that helps us quit? To be honest, sadly I don't think so. First of all there are studies that shows these NRT products really aren't that effective ( Actually it seems it's less effective than quitting cold turkey: 19% success vs. 26% in this study: And, as I've urged others to do before, I can use myself as an example. I've tried some of these NRT products and I did not succeed. So for big pharma, this is all about the money. I've not been able to dig out the numbers for the Norwegian Cancer society or other Norwegian anti-smoking (and anti-e-cigarette) organizations but have a look at who pops up on the Norwegian Prostate Cancer society (which is also a member of the Cancer Society): No less than 3 pharma companies, Pfizer being one of them. Sadly I believe that this is the case for a lot of the Scandinavian anti-smoking organizations as well as the Cancer Societies. I have no proof of this so if anyone actually can prove me wrong I would be really happy as this means we can have an unbiased debate with them here in Scandinavia.

FDA to war against e-cigarettes
The American Cancer Society is another example of Big Pharmas enormous efforts in this matter. Just have a look at the way they are demonizing e-cigarettes on their homepage ( "In fact, they may entice young people into trying traditional cigarettes.  We also have questions about the safety of these devices.  In lab tests, the FDA found some samples contain carcinogens and other toxic chemicals.  Using e-cigarettes can be like trading one deadly behavior for another.", then "There is currently no scientific evidence about the safety of e-cigarettes. In initial lab tests, FDA found detectable levels of carcinogens (nitrosamines) and toxic chemicals, including an ingredient used in  anti-freeze, in two brands of e-cigarettes and numerous cartridges.", and finally "E-cigarettes have not been approved by the FDA for use in smoking cessation. No evidence exists to show they help people quit smoking.". OK? All of these are quite simply lies. As you can see they keep referring to the FDA and their lab-tests. And guess what, both The American Cancer Society and the FDA receive funding from Big Pharma: There seem to be no end to the evidence if you start digging into this. And it seems to be no end to the list of organizations that which Big Pharma keeps throwing money at to get them to say what they want them to say.

I do believe, or at least I want to believe, that the pharma industry started out with good intentions, wanting to help people and improve public health. And I do believe there are pharma companies out there that really do care. But it seems like this foundation is fading. Something has happened along the way and now it seems that money and greed has taken over as the main driver for this industry. I mean, I fully understand that pharmaceutical companies co-operate and help fund organizations, and I do understand that the money they earn will enable them to do valuable research. So they should cooperate, and without the research of pharmaceutical companies modern medicine wouldn't have been where it is today. The problem is that to me it seems like at some point money became more important than health and parts of big pharma have lost sight of their values. This becomes very clear when the enormous potential of the electronic cigarettes when it comes to saving lives is overlooked in favor of money.

As I mentioned earlier some organizations, like the SmokeFree Partnership, wants us to look at them as the little David vs. Goliath, Big Tobacco. They also hints strongly (and many shouts out loudly) that Big Tobacco is the enemy here. Some say that we shouldn't believe a lot of the research, cause it's funded by Big Tobacco they say. Well talk about throwing stones in glass houses, but anyway... where is Big Tobacco in all this? What are they doing to stop the e-cigarette revolution? It would be in their interest as the new competitor are taking their customers, wouldn't it? And this is an industry that is built around a product that kills half it's users, so one would think these guys would stop at nothing to keep the e-cigarettes off the market right? But wait... didn't big pharma just say that big tobacco is funding pro-e-cig science? So ... they are not trying to stop e-cigarettes then... but why? Well Philip Morris, R.J. Reynolds, and Lorrillard are all in the e-cigarette business as well now.
It's all about the money

So why would the big tobacco companies go into the e-cigarette business instead of helping big pharma keeping the e-cigs of the market. Have big tobacco gone soft? They would earn more money by doing that right? Or would they? Smoking rates are already decreasing and has been for a while. I've mentioned earlier that the number of vapers is expected to quadruple during 2014. So moving from a slowly dying market to an exploding market might not sound like such a bad idea after all. Could it be that big tobacco have actually learned something from the mistakes of others (the music industry for example), that you shouldn't fight against new technology? Could it be that they have realized that the revolution is unstoppable, and it's now about minimizing the losses. Or has Big Tobacco thought of another way to keep the e-cigarette market at bay? One possible tactic they could be aiming for is going into the business, then squeeze out all the competition, and finally make the e-cigarettes less attractive to keep people from smoking. Remember these guys are not exactly saints. Just have a look at how they are using the same lobbying tactics as big pharma: I'm honestly not sure what their plan is but there are two things about big tobacco I'm pretty certain about: 1. They have not gone soft.... it's all about the money, and 2. They are good at math. Cause when you think about it, both big pharma and big tobacco is facing a competitor with the potential to grab a lot of their customers. The difference is what they have chosen to do about it. One of them tries to fight it, the other one seems to have realized it's no use and is trying to join the revolution instead. Looking at the development and the latest prognosis for the e-cigarette market, and the fact that there will be like 80 million e-cigarette users (assuming the current growth rate continues) before the TPD is implemented, it's beyond me why they are not both joining the revolution. And looking at these numbers, to me it seems that right now the revolution can't be stopped, the snowball is already moving to fast. That means regarding big tobacco, we can only hope that they have entered the e-cigarette industry to make it grow and make money in a new market, not to destroy it. I'm not even sure they know themselves yet, but I'm sure it will be the option that will generate the most money for them, I don't think they give a shit about public health to be honest. Either way, entering the e-cigarette business is the right thing to do for big tobacco right now, because whatever the outcome is when it comes to regulation and the TPD, they end up in control, to some extent at least. But can this control be minimized by a regulation scheme that gives the new player, the current growing e-cigarette industry, a fair market to compete in. Maybe the best way to fight Goliath is rolling with the punches from time to time, and strike back when the timing is right? It's all about knowing your enemies.

Because right now it seems Big Pharma is the real enemy of the e-cigarette, not Big Tobacco: In an ideal world, in my opinion, Big Tobacco, Big Pharma and the new e-cigarette industry would work together to achieve the same goal: better public health. But again, it's all about money, so this is again utopia, isn't it? Or maybe, just maybe could the EU and US government through reasonable regulation, designed for safety and based on real unbiased science, actually make this a possibility? What if we could make sure the e-cigarette market is a market where all these players can make good money? But do anyone possess the power to make this happen? Well, yes. The EU and US government has, but in order to make this happen, they have to know their enemies. And who are their enemies? Big Tobacco and Big Pharma? Well, to some extent yes, but they don't need to be. Their biggest enemy is greed. Know your enemy!

Thursday, 6 February 2014

Dr Farsalinos' fundraising campaign through the roof

I'm happy to see that the fund-raising campaign launched by Dr Farsalinos and his team to raise money for their study called Electronic cigarette liquids analysis-evaluating potentially harmful ingredients has gone through the roof. They had a goal of collecting $23.000, but now, with still 9 days to go they have collected over $33.000. Now THAT is what I call great news.

The goal of the study is to test more than 100 e-cigarette liquids from manufacturers all over the world to determine what is in them and how safe they are, and they say that the more money they collect, the more liquids they will be able to test. In the study announcement they say that this is a great opportunity for the industry to show responsibility towards health-related issues and the industry is urged to support it. And apparently they have... among the givers announced in the updates section you can see that several Greek e-cig and e-liquid vendors and manufacturers have given their support.

I'm really looking forward to seeing the results of this study, and hope the industry, and vapers will continue to give their support. I applaud Dr Farsalinos for his work and continued reminders that we need to focus on making vaping as safe as possible and in that way make it an accessible and attractive alternative to as many smokers as possible. Great work!

You can read all about the study here:

Wednesday, 5 February 2014

The consequences of over-regulating

I picked up on this article via (Check out guys, lots of good stuff there). Legal and public health experts Daniela Saitta, Giancarlo Antonio Ferro and Riccardo Polosa from the University of Catania, Italy have written an article (published in Therapeutic Advances in Chronic Disease on February the 3rd) where they are arguing that over-regulation of e-cigarettes is counter-productive and hypocritical. They write about the difficulties implementing good policies, mainly because of big tobacco and big pharma working against this, as this will lead to substantial losses in their sales of cigarettes and NRT.

So what would the consequences over-regulating e-cigarettes (and other smokeless tobacco like the Swedish "Snus" for that matter). We don't really need science and a lot of long-term research to dig into this matter, so lets just use some common sense and look into the future a bit.

While the sceptics are worried about the long term effects of vaping I have still never heard anyone claiming that they might be as harmful as cigarettes. Even the most sceptical say that e-cigarettes are 99% safer than regular cigarettes, but they are worried there might be some lesser harm that we'll see in the future. Actually some extremists might disagree but lets forget about these and stick to common sense for now. Lets cut the sceptics some slack and for now just say that e-cigarettes are 75% (or 50% for that matter) safer than normal cigarettes. What will happen if such a product is over-regulated?

The most obvious and most harmful consequence is that it will stop a lot of current smokers from switching to e-cigarettes and half of these will DIE from not doing so. We said that for now e-cigarettes are 75% safer, meaning (this is a bit absurd but stick with me ok) if these guys did the switch, only 12,5% would die from their habbit, which again means we saved a lot of lives, and the life quality of the survivors would be drastically increased. Now I just read that the number of smokers in the world is close to a billion ( Let's cut the sceptics some slack again and say that only 1% would have managed to quit with e-cigarettes (that are not able to without), but can't now that it's over-regulated. That means 10 million smokers, 5 millions of them will end up dead. With our 75% safer e-cigarettes 3.75 million lives could have been saved. But we were not talking about banning here, just over-regulating so say only half of these we're not able to quit, the rest managed with the regulated e-cigs. But that is still over 1.85 million lives saved... quite a big number. So even if we make completely absurd assumptions on the safety of e-cigarettes you see that the consequence of over-regulating is severe and works completely against the goal of harm-reduction. With this in mind, imagine what the real consequences are, when we look at the real safety of the e-cigarettes. Yeah, some might disagree but there is a lot of unbiased research out there proving they are virtually harmless, you just have to look for it. If you can't find it, it's because you don't want to find it, and I'm not going to go into the reasons people might have for not wanting to find it. I think my readers can figure that one out themselves.

So let's look at the consequences for the current vapers. I couldn't find a world-wide number right now but 2.5 million in the US, and I think I've read around 1.3 million in the UK so I think we can safely assume 5 million +. And it's expected to quadruple during 2014 ( I think some might revert to smoking, so that's lifes lost. But I think most will try to continue with e-cigs even if over-regulated. So what happens then? We'll get a black market. We'll have more dangerous products, that is unsafe batteries, unsafe atomizers and e-liquid with ingredients you probably shouldn't vape (and that is not put on the label). All of these potentially dangerous. There will be less research on the area, less tax-money and it would seriously tie down a growing industry that potentially could have offered many people work.

Then there is all those teens experimenting with e-cigs that I've written about earlier. Will over-regulating or banning e-cigarettes make them less attractive to young adults and children? Anyone answering yes to that question hasn't been a teenager, which would basically rule out most of my readers I would think :) I mean, I don't want my children to be addicted to nicotine, but I do that by educating them, not by forcing them. I don't live in the illusion that the fact that they are not allowed to buy alcohol until they are 18 will keep them from drinking until then. And I don't tell them they are not allowed to drink alcohol because it's illegal either, that would only make them want to try it. So I educate them, tell them how it works and tell them that IF they end up trying it, they can always call home and at least be safe. Try to think about what you found exciting when you were a teenager. Was it all legal? Did you stick to the rules at all times?

In conclusion we can see that over-regulating e-cigarettes (or as I said other alternatives to smoking) is in fact counter-productive and potentially very dangerous. And you really don't need all kinds of scientific reports and long term studies to see that either, just use common sense. I get a feeling that all this focus on empiric evidence for this and that in this matter is undermining value of common sense. So, now lets look at the consequences of the opposite, to NOT over-regulating e-cigarettes: We run a very small risk of discovering some minor harmful effect in the future and some children will probably start vaping (but ask yourself, could it be that those would have taken up smoking if they couldn't vape?). And we run the risk of saving millions of lives. I might have missed something so if anyone has something to add to this side of the scale that will make it tip the other way, please tell me.

Tuesday, 4 February 2014

YOU are proof that vaping works!

I some times get faced with questions about the effect of the e-cigarette on my health. Is it really that much better than cigarettes in the long run, or is it just as bad for me as the cigarettes? The world is full of sceptics, that think vaping is just another way of smoking that will kill you eventually. Even the Cancer Society say they will not recommend e-cigarettes because they are not certain what effect it has on your health and says it's misleading to market and sell e-cigarettes as "healthy cigarettes". At least they did in May 2013 in this article: So how can we face these sceptics and give them proof?

You can of course start throwing numbers back at them, just pick among the growing amount of research on the internet showing that e-cigarettes ARE in fact a million times better than cigarettes. But, as we all know by now, you're also able to find "scientific proof" of the opposite and of all the dangers of vaping as well. I've found this approach to be quite ineffective when it comes to convincing sceptics to be honest. And usually they start questioning the sources of the research I'm referring to, claiming this is research that is paid by the e-cigarette manufacturers or some even think that Big Pharma is going into the e-cigarette business and claims they pay for the research. I have even faced the claim that big Tobacco is behind it all... yup, true story.

Jim Oliver ran the NY marathon while vaping.
Can you challenge yourself and show others vaping works?

So what is your best bet then, trying to say help a sceptical smoker do the switch? If you're a vaper, I say YOU are the best proof that this actually works. Tell them your story, or even better: show them. People who know me have seen the transformation over the last couple of years and when showing them what I can do now there is very little doubt that this works. Find something you know you couldn't do while you were smoking, like running, walking up stairs, play with the kids, I'm sure you can think of something. And by doing this I think a lot of you might surprise yourself as well. Have you tried challenging yourself a bit physically after you switched to vaping? If not, my advice is to do so. Pick ONE thing you couldn't do, or struggled to do, or found very tiring while you were smoking and try it now. You don't have to run a marathon or climb Mount Everest, just take the stairs instead of the elevator once in a while, take a long walk on a Sunday morning or go play football with the kids. Even though you think people didn't notice you were in bad shape, they did. They noticed that you were coughing your lungs out when you reached the top of the stairs, or that you were short of breath from the slightest physical challenge, or that you never ran around with the kids... cause you couldn't. Show these people what has happened to you now. YOU are living proof that vaping works!

Sunday, 2 February 2014

Get your own Vaping Giraffe merchandise

So I'm pretty happy with the new design, got some great feedback. So I though I'd go and get myself a t-shirt or something with the logo on it. But then I thought why not make that available to everyone. So I did, and now you can all get your very own t-shirt, boxer, Iphone cover or even a pajamas with the Vaping Giraffe logo here: (or just use the widget in the sidebar). I might add more designs and more merchandise later, stay tuned.

Juice Review: Nick's Blissful Brews - Smoked Custard

There are a lot of juice-mixers out there that are doing their own take on
popular tastes, like Vanilla Custard, different fruit and berry mixes and the variations based on aniseed and so on. Nick is not one of them. As far as I know, in addition to some specials made in limited quantities, these are his blends:

  • Smoked Custard - A mix of tobacco and custard, and the one I'm reviewing today. To be honest I wondered how the hell he came up with that idea.
  • Peach Green Tea - Maybe the one that sounds most sane
  • Strawberry Black Tea - Never would have thought of this either :)
I got to admit I was a bit skeptical, but still I felt I kind of just had to try out this crazy blend. Nicks juices are according to himself designed for genesis atomizers. 80/20 PG/VG keeps the coils clean, gives you a bunch of throat hit, but still I find this Smoked Custard to produce a satisfying amount of vapor as well. I've been trying out this juice in the Hellfire Mega (4/5 wraps of .25 kanthal) since Friday now. It feels a bit like eating custard while smoking a good cigar, and surprisingly that is a good thing. The custard is more like an undertone, like hmm... like when you add some of that flavor-syrup to your coffee, but not to much. It's like some flavors blend and become new flavors and the originals disappear, but in this juice it doesn't, both the tobacco and the custard is still there. Great balance, and a shitload of flavor, and it's a flavor I'm sure you have never tasted anywhere else. All in all a great juice, that keeps growing on me. I think I'll leave some of it for steeping as well to see how it develops. According to some of my friends at the vapepit, it also is really really nice to your coils and you can go on for ages without recoiling with Nicks juices. Just had 2 days to test but still looks nice and clean here as well, we'll see how it goes.

Really looking forward to trying out the rest of Nick's brews as this is good shit. I'll definitely try to keep an eye out for the next special edition as well. Keep on coming up with these taste-combos that no-one else has thought of Nick, I love it. Highly recommended by the vaping giraffe :)

Some design changes

Did some design changes on the blog today. Hope you guys like it, even though I'm not exactly a design guru. But at least I didn't steal to much. Gotta admit I found the nice background on the internet, but the logo and header is my own creation.

Comments and thoughts on this are more than welcome :)