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Vaping 101: A Vaping Glossary

4th Jan 2017

Vaping 101: A Vaping Glossary


When you first make the switch to vaping one of the most overwhelming things can be getting to grips with all the jargon that seasoned vapers casually throw into conversation. What on earth is a clearomiser? Should you be using a IMR or an Li-Ion battery? What exactly is diacetyl and why is everyone telling you to steer clear of it? Trust us on this one, you really should steer clear of it.

To help take the mystery out of even the most obscure vaping terms, we’ve gathered together sixty five vaping words and phrases and provided simple definitions for each one, so next time you find yourself in a conversation about the merits of box mods versus disposables you’ll know exactly what’s being discussed.

We have a wide range of vape guides and articles that may answer some additional questions.

View Our Full List of 101 Vaping Topics


Adaptor - a device that allows users to use cartridges and cartomisers with a different type of battery

Advanced Personal Vaporiser (APV) - a vaping device that features elements such as variable wattage and voltage. Also known as a mod

All day vape - a slang term for a favourite flavour of e-liquid you can enjoy without getting bored of the taste

Analogue - an alternative name for traditional cigarettes

Atomiser - the element of a vaping device that heats the e-liquid

Automatic device - a vaping device where the heating element is activated automatically


Blanks - Empty cartridges/cartomisers that can be filled with e-liquid

Box mod - a powerful box-shaped vaporiser, originally popular in the US but gaining popularity in the UK


Car adaptor - a device that allows you to charge your e-cigarette battery in the car

Cartomiser - a tank element of a vaping device that holds e-liquid

CASAA - a US organisation that campaigns for vapers’rights

Charger - a device to recharge a vaporiser battery

Cigalike - a style of e-cigarette that resembles a traditional cigarette

Clearomiser - a transparent cartomiser that shows vapers how much e-liquid is left in the tank

Clouds - an alternative name for exhaled vapour

Custom mod - a vaping device that uses customised parts, often handmade


Diacetyl - a flavouring used in some e-liquids that has the potential to cause lung damage. Vapers are advised to steer clear of any e-liquid that contains diacetyl as an ingredient

Disposable - an e-cigarette designed to be used and then disposed of

Drip/dripping - the process of adding e-liquid into an atomiser

Drip tip - a mouthpiece that allows vapers to drip e-liquid straight into the tank


E-cig - an abbreviation of e-cigarette

E-juice - an alternative name for e-liquid


Flooding - when atomisers and vape tanks are filled with too much e-liquid. Indicated by a gurgling sound during inhalation


Hit - an alternative name for inhalation

High voltage device (HV) - a vaping device that runs above 3.7 volts, the standard voltage for e-cigarettes


ICR - an abbreviation of lithium ion cobalt battery

IMR - an abbreviation of lithium ion manganese battery

Inhale - the process of breathing vapour into the mouth, throat and/or lungs


Joules - the unit of power, relevant to those creating temperature-controlled mods

Juice - an alternative name for e-liquid, e-juice


Kick - an alternative name for throat hit


LED - a light that’s used on many vaping devices to signal the device is powered up/the battery is running low

Liquid - an alternative name for e-liquid, e-juice

Li-Ion - an abbreviation of lithium ion batteries, considered the strongest on the market

Li-Po - an abbreviation of lithium polymer rechargeable batteries

Low resistance device (LR) - an atomiser/cartomiser that has a lower Ohm rating than usual devices

Lung hit - a process where vapour is inhaled straight to the lungs


Manual battery - a type of battery that requires the press of a button to switch on the device

Mechanical mod - a vaping device devoid of electronics, typically contains a mechanical switch that holds a battery in place

Mg strength - the nicotine strength of an e-liquid

Mouth to lung hit - the process where vapour is inhaled into the mouth and then into the lungs


Nicotine - an alkaloid substance found in the tobacco plant, present in both traditional and electronic cigarettes

Nicotine strength - used when discussing the nicotine level of e-liquid. Typically measured in mg or as a %

NRT - an abbreviation of Nicotine Replacement Therapy


Passthrough - a device that can be powered by a USB connection

PCC - an abbreviation of portable charging case, a case that allows an e-cigarette to be charged on the go

Pen - a slim style of electronic cigarette, sometimes referred to as a cigalike

PPC - an abbreviation of personal charging case, a compact charging case for e-cigarettes

Personal vaporiser (PV) - an alternative name for an e-cigarette

Propylene glycol (PG) - one of the main ingredients in e-liquids


Rebuildable atomiser (RBA) - an atomiser that can be rebuilt by the user. Used by some to save on cost.


Smokeless cigarette - an early alternative name for an e-cigarette

Starter kit - a bundle of products and contains everything a user needs to begin vaping

Sub-ohming - a method used by cloud chasers to create large clouds of vapour


Throat hit - the sensation of the vapour hitting the throat

THR - an abbreviation for Tobacco Harm Reduction

TPD - Tobacco Products Directive 2014/14/EU, a UK and EU law regulating vaping


Variable voltage (VV) - a device that gives the user control over the voltage output of the device

Variable wattage (VW) - a device that gives the user control over the wattage of the device

Vegetable glycerin (VG) - a common ingredient in e-liquid


Wick - the element of the vaping device that delivers e-liquid to the coil. Commonly made from silica cord, cotton and fibreglass


We’ve tried to include as many vaping terms and phrases as possible but if you can think of any that are missing from the list please don’t hesitate to let us know on Facebook or Twitter and we’ll be sure to add them.