What is the best starter vape on the market right now? Well, there’s plenty of competition - believe us! With the rise of vaping and range of choice being a bit overwhelming, we’ve put together a guide to help you get to know the different starter vape devices available.
At TABlites, we stock a wide range of leading vape brands and e-cig products to keep your options plentiful. If you’re looking to quit smoking or simply enjoy vaping, then here’s your guide on where to begin.
But first, let’s cover the basics.
So, What Is Vaping?
Vaping is succinctly defined as ‘the use of e-cigarettes or other devices that let you breathe in nicotine or other drugs as vapour rather than smoke’.
Though vapes vary in design and features, the core components of a typical vape include:
- Battery - Vape battery capacities can range from 180mAh to 2,500mAh (milli-amp hours).
- E-liquid tank - This reservoir chamber holds the e-liquid before it is vaped.
- Atomiser coil - In using the vape, you will heat this resistance coil to create vapour.
- Wicking material - This cotton material sits around the coil and delivers e-liquid to it.
- Mouthpiece - Otherwise referred to as the drip tip, this can come in various forms.
- Charging point and charger - The latter will usually be a standard USB-C charger.
A vape creates a vapour by heating the e-liquid, the ingredients of which usually include:
- Propylene glycol
- Vegetable glycerine
There are certain similarities between electronic cigarettes and their non-electronic counterparts. The hand-to-mouth action involved in using either option has helped some vapers to transition from smoking traditional cigarettes.
Also, vaping and cigarette smoking produce similar sensations, such as ‘throat hit’. This term is used for the ‘kick’ felt in the back of the throat when the user inhales. However, one key difference between e-cigs and ‘standard’ cigs is that only the latter burn tobacco.
Best Starter Vapes for 2023
You’ll find no shortage of choices when it comes to picking a vape. If you’re new to the vaping scene, we’re hoping to make the wide range a little less overwhelming by narrowing it down for you.
Here are our top picks for:
- Disposable vapes
- Pod vape kits
- MTL and sub-ohm devices
There’s a whole bunch of jargon associated with vapes, so deciding which to pick may initially feel a little daunting. However, disposable vapes present you with a gentler introduction - not to mention a wide range of choice.
Best starter vape picks from our disposable range:
- Elf Bar 600 Disposable Vape – The easy-to-transport Elf Bar 600 we offer is ready to go. It’s designed to contain 600 puffs, before neeing to be replaced. Perfect for new vapers, especially those looking to quit smoking, because it can deliver a strong rush of nicotine to help you beat those cravings.
- Lost Mary Disposable Vape – As Lost Mary disposable vapes are nice and compact as well as lightweight, you can vape on the go with ease, which is great for first-time vapers. The simplistic design of these vapes offers no complicated compartments or settings.
- Aspire K3 Quick Start Kit – A simple-to-use, super-slim and discreet pen-style starter kit, designed with mouth-to-lung vaping in mind. It’s no wonder the K3 is one of the best-selling vape kits of all time, as it is easy to use and suits vapers of all experience levels!
Disposable vapes are so-called as they are each intended to be used only once before being discarded. As they are also very affordable, these vapes enable you to tentatively dip your toes into the world of vaping without making any big commitment.
Also key to their appeal is how easily they can be used. With these small and discreet vapes, there is no need for you to:
- Refill the tank with e-liquid
- Recharge the built-in battery
- Replace the battery
- Find a storage space larger than a pocket for the vape
A single-use vape can comfortably make the best starter vape for a smoker. One major reason why is that using a disposable vape involves a mouth-to-lung vaping method similar to tobacco smoking.
For those just starting out, single-use vapes put convenience at the forefront.
For more disposable choices, check out our recent post on the best disposable vapes on the market.
Pod Vape Kits
We are proud of the extensive selection of disposable vapes we offer. However, you need to keep in mind that, once you have bought a disposable vape, you’ll only be able to use it for inhaling the one specific flavour of e-liquid the vape came with.
On average, a single disposable will provide you with between 400 and 600 puffs. However, depending on your e-liquid preferences, this could be too long for you to personally stick with the same flavour.
If instead you’d like to empty the tank and top it up with a different kind of vape juice, a pod vape may be a better choice, allowing you to do exactly that.
Best starter vape picks from our pod vape kit range:
- Smok Solus 2 Kit – This device has been designed for simplistic, intuitive use. The built-in inhale activation technology means that you can vape with the Smok Solus 2 Kit just by inhaling on its mouthpiece – and the overall enclosure is sleek and streamlined.
- Uwell Caliburn A3 Kit – Housed in this vape kit’s premium-quality aluminium alloy casing is a 520mAh battery that can be charged completely in a mere 15 minutes. When the Caliburn A3 is in use, the pod is attached securely due to a solid magnetic connection at its base.
- Innokin Klypse Kit – This unit is minimalist in design, coming with no buttons or settings but with a 2ml refillable pod that is easy to replenish with e-liquid. The device’s magnetic cap prevents dust, dirt, or debris from accumulating on the mouthpiece.
Advantages of a pod vape include:
- Rechargeable battery
- Removable or replaceable tank
As a pod vape kit remains small in design as well as easy to use, it can make a great intermediate choice of vape. It could even make the best starter vape for you full stop if you want one offering a higher level of versatility than is possible with a disposable.
With a pod vape, that versatility will largely come in your ability to swap e-liquids in and out while keeping the same device. Here at TABlites, we stock a broad range of vape pod kits - including some pods pre-filled with e-liquid and others that can be repeatedly refilled with fresh e-liquid.
Mouth to Lung (MTL) Devices and Sub-Ohm Vapes
Another two technical-looking terms that can often pop up in discussions about vaping are ‘mouth to lung’ (MTL) and ‘direct to lung’ (DTL). These two vaping methods can be summed up as:
- MTL involves inhaling the vapour into the mouth and subsequently into the lungs
- DTL sees the vapour inhaled directly into the lungs
As MTL is much closer in resemblance to the inhaling method used for tobacco smoking, MTL can feel like a more natural and comfortable vaping style for would-be ex-smokers.
What’s more, mouth-to-lung vapes are often built for simplicity, making them especially good as beginner vape kits.
Best starter vape picks from our MTL and sub-ohm range:
- Vaporesso XROS 3 Kit – Through sliding the XROS 3’s precise airflow adjustment lever to open or shut its air vents, you can easily tailor the device to suit either a tight MTL or loose MTL vaping style.
- Eleaf iStick Power 2 Kit – The built-in 0.96-inch colour screen on this box-shaped vape allows you to see and tap into its wide array of intelligent functions. These, in turn, are underpinned by the device’s integrated smart chip set, which itself utilises the latest vape technology.
- VOOPOO Vinci 3 Pod Kit – With this multifaceted device at close hand, you can ease yourself gently into MTL or sub-ohm vaping. Also, the Vinci 3’s vast range of safety features includes Overtime Protection, Overcharge Protection, and Max Power Protection.
Of the sub-ohm vape kit variety, for you to reach optimum performance, it is crucial that your choice of vape:
- Enables you to use the vape coil resistance you need
- Gives you the option of setting the vape’s wattage range
- Supports sub-ohm tanks that have wide airflow openings
Sub-ohm vapes come with a range of features to enhance your vaping experience so you should definitely browse a mix of brands before you make your final choice. Produce stunning vapour clouds at will and change flavours as and when the mood strikes with these starter vapes.
Choosing the Best Starter Vape for You
The best starter vape for you will largely depend on how experienced you are with vaping. Even if you do not currently have your own vape, this would not necessarily mean that you have never vaped before, or do not know precisely what vaping entails.
It is possible that, in the past, you have:
- Only tried vaping occasionally, such as with a disposable vape or someone else’s vape
- Been an avid vaper but long fallen out of the habit
- Learned a lot about vaping but never actually vaped yourself
For these reasons, it does not strictly follow that the vape starter kits worthiest of your attention would be the most rudimentary ones.
If your knowledge of vaping consists of little more than what you have read in this article, it would be advisable for you to mostly consider beginner vape starter kits that have been built for mouth-to-lung vaping. As well as our top picks listed above, here’s some additional insight into some of the best MTL vapes.
However, in certain situations, it might be a better idea for you to jump to a more advanced vape device that would enable effective direct-to-lung vaping.
Consider a DTL vape if you:
- Have mastered the use of more basic vapes
- Are eager to vape in a way that will create large fluffy clouds as you exhale
- Want to tailor your vaping experience to a greater degree than what lower-end vapes would allow
- Know how to safely use the advanced settings and features on higher-end vapes
You should always do relevant research to keep yourself reliably informed. In this spirit, before buying a sub-ohm vape, you should make sure you know in depth what sub-ohm vaping involves.
How Much Are Starter Vapes?
In many instances, a vape device for beginners will be relatively simple in structure and features - and, as a result, be on the lower end of the price scale.
Of the vapes we stock, disposables are the cheapest - as little as £1.99 each. Of course, you would only be able to use a disposable once; however, even if you have longer-term vaping in mind, we can still potentially provide you with a suitable vape kit for under £10.
A pod vape or vape pen kit can be slightly pricier than this, but still often costs less than £30 upfront. Even some sub-ohm vape kits can be priced beneath this threshold, though you might be willing to spend around the £40-70 mark for one of the more premium brands.
How Do Vapes Work?
Though vapes come in various shapes and sizes, the average vape will consist of a metal or plastic enclosure along with the following five essential components:
- Power source
The power source is usually an internal vape battery that can be recharged with the use of a USB cord. However, in the case of some vape models, the battery can be removed.
The cartridge, meanwhile, contains the e-liquid - or, as it is otherwise known, e-juice or vape juice. The exact size of the cartridge can depend on the vape device, but this cartridge will usually be transparent so that the vaper can easily see at a glance how much liquid remains in the tank.
The atomiser heats the e-liquid to turn it into vapour, which will escape from the system via the mouthpiece - an open tube also referred to as the drip tip. Through placing your mouth on this part of the device, you can inhale the vapour.
How Should Vaping Feel?
To an extent, this will be determined by the kind of vape you use. However, no matter where you are in your smoking-to-vaping journey, how vaping actually feels to you will also depend on whether you are taking the mouth to lung or direct to lung approach.
MTL vaping includes the following steps:
- Taking a puff
- Momentarily holding the vapour in the mouth and throat
- Inhaling to the lungs
- Breathing out
Given how quickly the vapour is absorbed into the lungs with MTL vaping, you will only need to hold your breath for about a second. You can therefore look forward to a pleasant experience with both the nicotine rush and the throat hit.
With DTL vaping, on the other hand, you would inhale the vapour directly into your lungs over one long, steady draw lasting 3-5 seconds. This makes for a smoother inhale, a gentler sensation on the throat, more intense flavour, and - when you exhale - larger, denser clouds of vapour.
Benefits of Vaping vs Smoking Cigarettes
Vaping has often been touted as an appealing alternative to tobacco smoking. For this reason, people looking to wean themselves off traditional cigarette smoking are often encouraged to switch to vaping, as it can still help to satisfy nicotine cravings.
The NHS has confirmed that nicotine vaping is ‘substantially less harmful than smoking’, adding that the former is ‘also one of the most effective tools for quitting smoking’. Choosing to vape rather than smoke will expose you to fewer toxins capable of causing:
- Lung disease
- Heart attack
To contrast, when cigarettes are burned, they release thousands of chemicals - and up to 70% of these cause cancer.
One simple reason why vaping is healthier than smoking is that nicotine is not particularly harmful. Tobacco contains the poisonous substances of carbon monoxide and tar - with a range of adverse implications for human health.
If you are trying to quit normal cigarettes, one especially powerful incentive to pick up a vape is that you’ll have a range of e-liquids available in various nicotine strengths - at TABlites, as high as 20mg.
This means that you can select e-liquids containing as much nicotine as you personally need for satisfying your cravings as well as warding off withdrawal symptoms - such as:
- Low mood
- Sleep disturbances
- Persistent cough
- Weight gain
It’s worth pointing out that going ‘cold turkey’ in an attempt to quit smoking cigarettes can actually bring worse withdrawal symptoms compared to the more subtle approach of gradually reining in cigarette smoking over an extended period of time.
There are various quit-smoking aids you can potentially utilise - including:
- Support systems
- Nicotine replacement therapy (NRT)
However, according to the NHS, using a vape in place of other nicotine replacement products can roughly double your chances of quitting cigarette smoking.
Vaping also has the advantage of being what is estimated to be a much less expensive activity over the long run compared to smoking. Once you have a vape kit at close hand, you can expect vaping to cost you roughly a third as much as smoking.
Choosing the Right E-Liquid to Get Started
E-liquid is what creates the flavour for the vapour you inhale - and, at TABlites, you can choose from many different flavours of e-liquids. However, it is not only the flavour you should think about when trying to decide what e-liquid to buy.
Many e-juices have certain key ingredients in common but can still differ in their exact composition. Here are some of these ingredients - and how the proportion of each in any given e-liquid affects the experience of using it for vaping:
- Propylene glycol (PG) - This is responsible for the ‘throat hit’ that helps make vaping feel similar to traditional smoking. Hence, higher-PG e-liquids can be especially useful for ex-smokers.
- Vegetable glycerin (VG) - You are advised to use a higher-VG e-juice if using one high in PG leaves you feeling unwell. VG can also make dense vapour clouds easier to achieve.
- Nicotine - Though nicotine-free e-liquids are available, you could opt for e-juices that have high, moderate, or low nicotine levels depending on how often you tend to smoke.
Both online and in our physical stores, you can check the PG/VG ratio of an e-liquid as well as its nicotine strength - if indeed nicotine is included. The various nicotine strengths you can pick from for e-liquids include 3mg, 6mg, 10mg, 12mg, 18mg, and 20mg.
As with, say, food or music, figuring out the best e-liquid for your needs can be a matter of trying many of the options until you are able to settle on one that feels ‘just right’.
The best starter vape for you could therefore be one that proves most effective in this kind of experimentation. Whether that vape is disposable, a pod vape kit, a sub-ohm vape, or something else entirely will inevitably be influenced by your specific situation and needs.
If you’re new to vaping and keen to explore the range of starter kits available, be sure to browse our selection of starter vape kits online or come visit us in-store. Any questions? As always, our team will be on hand to help.