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What are PG and VG?

By Evelyn Valdez | Oct 03, 2016 | Vape Blog | 4 min read

What are PG and VG?

Everything you need to know about PG and VG

When looking for the perfect vape juice, it is essential to know the differences between PG and VG. For a beginner, this concept may be confusing, but it is crucial to understand before buying an e-juice. Choosing the right PG/VG ratio will effect the way you are vaping and the flavor of the e-juice. We also have a free vape promotion, be sure to check that out.

What is PG and VG?

They are odorless liquids that help create e-liquids, and produce vapor when heated. They both have different consistency, along with a distinct mouth and throat hit when vaped. PG and VG are used as base ingredient in every vape juice. 

  • PG stands for propylene glycol
  • VG stands for vegetable glycerin

E-liquid ingredients

A typical e juice consists of the following ingredients.

  • VG/PG base
  • Nicotine
  • Flavor extracts
  • Water

An e-juice base (pg/vg) binds together flavoring and nicotine so it can be heated up by your vape. Nicotine is added by the mg and provides a throat hit when vaped. Different combinations of water and flavoring are used to flavor the base mix.

Mixing PG and VG together

It is very common for an e-juice to have both PG and VG. Juices containing pure PG juice is generally too runny while juices containing pure VG are close to flavorless. For example, the most common ratio in today's market is 70 vg / 30 pg. This means 

Which PG/VG ratio is best for me?

Most vape juice in today's market have a 70/30 vg to pg ratio. This ratio works for both tanks and atomizers and is a popular formula for both flavor and vapor production. Thinner juices that are stronger in flavor will have even higher PG levels (I have seen up to 50/50 vg to pg). There is also a market for 100% vg juices. These juices produce massive vapor production but flavor is milder due to the thicker viscosity.

For vapers without a PG allergy, we recommend starting with a 70/30 vg/pg ratio.This combination has grown to be the standard in the vaping community.

To see our collection of vape juice, visit the Vapebox store.

PG or Propylene Glycol

PG is a safe to use petroleum by product. For vaping, it is used to provide a throat hit. Vapers who prefer high PG e-juices generally feel a similar sensation of smoking tobacco. Higher PG levels also result in a stronger flavor at the cost of lower vapor production.

  • Thinner viscosity PG is thinner than VG meaning it soaks into cotton wicks easier. This will result in less burnt hits. Burnt hits are usually caused by burning cotton before it is thoroughly wicked
  • Stronger throat hit Adding pg creates the sensation of a throat hit similar to tobacco cigarettes.
  • Stronger flavor Although PG is flavorless, PG carries flavors more effectively and is a more common base for flavor extracts
  • Less vapor production A thinner consistency results in thinner vapor production. The nature of PG means all pg based e-juices will have less vapor production

VG or Vegetable Glycerin

VG is derived from vegetable oil, which comes from palm and/or vegetable oil. It is a natural chemical that is safe to use. VG has a sweeter taster and is relatively thicker than PG making it a smoother hit. VG is used to increase vapor production at the cost of flavor and throat hit. 

  • Thicker viscosity VG is much thicker than PG. This means it absorbs into cotton and wicks slower than it's PG counterpart. This can lead to burnt hits if cotton cannot absorb the juice in between hits.
  • Weaker throat hit VG is known to be easier on the throat because it isn't as sharp as PG. VG is the preferred base for vapers seeking bigger clouds.
  • Weaker flavor While VG does have a slightly sweet taste, it doesn't bind with flavor extracts as well as PG. This results in an overall weaker flavor.
  • Greater vapor production VG's thicker consistency means bigger and thicker clouds when vaped. Also, VG dominant juices irritate the throat less than PG dominant juices.

PG vs VG Summary

There are a few key differences between these two liquids and knowing them will help you determine which ratio will work best for you!

PG has a thinner consistency than VG, which means it will build less gunk on your coil than VG. The thick consistency of VG can build gunk on your coil and reduce the life of atomizers quicker. Don't be scared, gunk on your coils is cleaned easily. Older atomizers may not be able to sustain high VG juices, particularly the ones using smaller coils as clearomizer. Always make sure you select the right ratio for your hardware, if you are using an older model with smaller coils then opt for lower VG and higher PG. PG is tasteless and clear making added flavors in your e-juice more presentable. VG has a sweeter taste to it and also amps up the vapor production.

So if you are looking for a strong throat hit, more flavor, and like the sensation similar to smoking tobacco then a higher PG ratio is the way to go.

If you are looking for a smooth hit with huge vapor production to cloud chase and impress your friends then a higher VG ratio is the way to go.

Finally, if you are unsure on which option is right for you, opt to try the standard ratio of 70vg / 30pg.

Contact Vapebox if you need help, or have any questions or concerns about what PG/VG level would be best for you.

Otherwise you can browse Vapebox store e-juices by their different PG/VG levels

Evelyn Valdez


Evelyn is a writer at Vapebox. She's passionate about two things: vaping and animals. She has been vaping for 5 years. Currently, her ADV is Red's Iced.

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