It’s easy for people to be judgemental about vaping – often, non-vapers or anti-vapers think that all they tend see is someone who’s obnoxiously blowing enormous clouds in public places.
The fact is though, this represents a very small percentage of the 3 million people who currently vape in the UK – with many enthusiasts and vaping connoisseurs who aren’t concerned about image – but instead about flavours, technical details and a wholehearted enjoyment of a range of e-liquids.
I’d like to take you through some key points that I think make vaping a lifestyle choice – and much more than just an alternative to smoking.
It’s easy to consider our digital world to be deeply connected – but it’s really not. Hundreds of friends and connections online rarely results in hundreds of conversations or group chats – but a shared hobby or interest changes that.
Vaping is exactly that for a lot of people. Rarely (if ever!) did you see smokers creating social media pages and sharing tips – but that’s exactly what you get with vaping. The reason for community involvement varies; perhaps you’re looking for technical help, advice or recommendations – either way, you’re entering a generally friendly community with people who are happy to help.
Friendly professional help
“Vaping shops are popping up all over the place nowadays!”
That’s what you’ll tend to hear when you talk to your average town or city-centre shopper – but it’s no bad thing – because each vaping shop is home to a handful of professionals who know the ins and outs of vaping – and are generally happy to help and advise all day long!
Compare this to smoking for a second. Aside from a small number of tobacco shops that remain around the UK, shop staff tend to know very little about the cigarettes and other tobacco products they stock. They certainly won’t stand and chat with you for 20 minutes about your vape, mods, e-liquids and more – but that’s the kind of environment you’ll get in the best vaping shops.
Are they popping up all over the place? Yeah, they are – but are you likely to find a bunch of people who are friendlier and happier to help you choose equipment and liquids that are right for you? Or offer free advice and help? Probably not!
A matter of taste
Cigarettes are a funny thing – there’s no question that some are enjoyable where others turn your stomach – but for most people, smoking a cigarette isn’t about flavour, the sensation or enjoying the experience – it’s about feeding an addiction. Exactly the reason you’re more likely to see people sneaking a cig during their lunch time – rather than sitting on a park bench somewhere pretty just enjoying a cigarette.
Vaping isn’t about addiction – sure, it becomes a habit, but you never want to lose that enjoyable flavour or sensation of the draw. It’s not just about e-liquids either, your vape setup is likely to personal to you.
Vaping is about much more than just smoking as quickly as you can – it’s about enjoying the experience – and finding different experiences that mix things up a little. In my experience, it’s probably more accurate to compare vaping to enjoying a selection of good wines – than it is comparing it to smoking!
Some technical expertise
It doesn’t take a great deal of technical expertise to smoke a cigarette – and while you don’t need an electrical engineering exam to get started with your first vape, you may very well end up exploring the technical side of vaping in a little more detail.
The technical stuff that goes alongside vaping can be fascinating – from cleaning and rebuilding your vape – to adjusting an adding a range of mods – there’s much much more to vaping than simply inhaling and exhaling. Vaping can be an interest, a lifestyle – perhaps even a hobby. Some people might turn their nose up at you if you said that you’ve got a passion for vaping – but that’s a judgement based in their ignorance, not your choice of lifestyle!
Vaping vs. Smoking
Ultimately, there’s a much more to vaping than there is to most people’s smoking experience. Do you have an interest in the technical specifications and setup of your vape? Are you interested in what makes an incredible flavour? Or being part of a community that’s warm, friendly and encourages discussion and sharing knowledge?
Vaping might not be for everyone – but for those who are involved and ‘get it’ – vaping is unquestionably a lifestyle that involves much more than meets the eye…