Over the years, we’ve done several experiments with unusual vape flavours. Very often we’ve done this for a bit of fun, but sometimes the outcomes have surprised us. A good couple of years ago, for instance, we went to Best E Cig with a small range of very unusual flavours. One of these was barbecue sauce flavour. As you’d expect, a lot of people absolutely hated it. But one elderly man told us it was the first thing he’d tasted since having a stroke.
Exactly the same occurred using a Voop Juice range we created for April Fool’s day. These juices were deliberately created to taste awful, and I found the Cheese and Onion flavour disgusting. However, many people actually liked it. The thing is, there’s a large number of flavours on the market now. Some are unusual, and interest a small audience, but the benefit of this can be that, whatever your taste preference is, there’ll be something out there that you’ll love. And that’s important, as the more you love vaping, and also the further you depart from tobacco flavours, the not as likely you might be to return to smoking.
Given that there’s a ridiculous variety of vaping studies being published nowadays, there’s not plenty of research on the importance of flavours in: There is some, though. A survey well over 4000 vapers, lead by Konstantinos Farsalinos in 2013, learned that 48.5% of vapers felt that restricting flavours would increase cravings for cigarettes, while 39.7% felt that fewer flavours would make it more unlikely to allow them to give up smoking.
Since then, non-tobacco flavours have grown to be more valuable in initiation. In Konstantinos’ original survey, the majority of vapers started vaping with tobacco flavours, but a much more recent survey which considered the flavors preferences well over 70,000 vapers learned that non-tobacco flavours (in america) were the predominant choice when starting vaping. The research concluded that banning flavours might lead to a decline in people starting vaping and a rise in people switching back from vaping to smoking.
This really is backed up by research by Russell et al, which found that menthol and tobacco flavours now rank in 5th and 6th place amongst adult vapers. In a press conference organised through the New Nicotine Alliance, Russell talked further concerning the results, saying:
“Evidence from the own studies suggest which a significantly higher proportion of smokers who prefer to vape non-tobacco flavors carry on to fully quit smoking cigarettes within 90 days.”
Put simply, non-tobacco flavours result in a higher effectiveness when switching completely from smoking to vaping. It has been backed up by way of a more recent study by Buckell et al (published as this post was initially written). Employing a discrete choice test out other 2000 adult vapers, the authors found a flavour ban on e-cigarettes would result in a rise in smoking rates.
Another smaller study by Pacek et al surveyed 240 teenagers who dual use (both vape and smoke). Within their survey, 17% of young vapers said they could smoke more if flavours were limited to tobacco and menthol.
The idea that specific flavours could be important is backed up by industry research by JUUL, which discovered that vapers who used Mint or Menthol were 23% more likely to move to vaping compared to those who used tobacco flavours.
Could flavours assist dual vapers? Not every person switches to vaping immediately. In the end, the first puff upon an electronic cigarette doesn’t mean your last puff over a tobacco cigarette. Research indicates that 46% of dual vapers have jtsedy switched to electronic cigarettes following a year, however for others it may take considerably longer.
My own experience is that flavours can help dual vapers retain interest. I’ve seen those who carry on and smoke several cigarettes per day experiment a whole lot with different flavours. If flavours may help retain interest, then dual vapers will smoke less, hopefully not get back to 100% smoking and eventually move to 100% vaping. Perhaps, for many, it’s only a matter of finding that perfect e-liquid (and with thousands of flavours on the market, that can take a bit of time).