//How to Make Vape Juice
How to Make Vape Juice 2018-10-12T03:28:40+00:00

How to Make Vape Juice

Those who have vaped for a long time may have grown tired of having to regularly spend money on e-liquid (or e-juice) to refill their vape pens. Some may even have ideas for never-before-tried flavors. If this is you, it may be the time you learned the fine art of making your own e-liquid.

Making DIY Vape Juice in 5 Easy Steps

Mixing your own e-juice can be fun or frustrating, depending on how much knowledge you have. Whether this is your first time, or you’ve previously tried but failed, this ABCD simple, step-by-step guide on how to make vape juice will serve as a reference to help you traverse the world of DIY e-liquid, make it fun, and might even save some cash in the process.

Before Anything Else…

You need to make sure you have the proper ingredients and tools for mixing. While the chemistry involved is basic and doesn’t involve blowing anything up, you still need to practice proper safety.

Also, since mixing your own DIY juice will involve terms that might be lost to new users; you can refer to ‘The Best Vaping Glossary and Terminology’ as a reference.

It’s Easier Than You Might Think

It’s okay when you wonder how to make vape juice and envision an Einstein-like old scientist (who has seen better days), in a shady laboratory, mixing some volatile chemicals, surrounded by truckloads of outlandish lab apparatuses, with a loud sound of something boiling in the background.

But that’s far from reality because making e-juice is simple, however, the result can range from a fluid you instantly want to throw down the drain to the best tasting e-juice ever, or anything in between.

Depending on the desired quantity, you can get to know how to make e-juice anywhere, in your kitchen or garage, but you’ll need some specific ingredients and equipment. Almost everything we mention in this guide is easily available online as well as in stores.

making e-juice

Ingredients to Make Vape Juice:

There are five ingredients to make e-liquid namely VG, PG, flavor, diluted nicotine, and distilled water or vodka, though you may or may not use nicotine and vodka. At a bare minimum, e-juice can be made with just a PG/VG base and flavoring.

I. Propylene Glycol (PG)

It’s the preferred base liquid of most DIY e juice makers, however, some may have allergies to PG. It’s a federally approved, colorless, odorless organic chemical compound used in a variety of products including tobacco, foods, and more. It’s also used in some medicinal products which can be inhaled, injected into the bloodstream, used orally or topically.

II. Vegetable Glycerol (VG)

Similar to PG but a natural liquid extract derived from vegetables, VG is more viscous (thicker) and has a slight tinge of sweetness to it. While PG doesn’t really impact the overall flavor but VG can, either in a good or bad way. It’s an FDA approved product used in foods, e-juices and even cosmetics. Most DIY e-juices use both PG and VG, as each brings unique characteristics to the e-liquid. We’ll discuss how to make vape juice with them and how they actually impact the end product in a later section.

III. Distilled Water or Vodka

While not really crucial to the mix, this is generally used to thin out 100% VG mixes. Vodka gives added throat hit, as well, without having to add nicotine. If you don’t want to use vodka, consider adding distilled water instead.

IV. Flavoring

Flavors are available in a wide variety, but for better tasting e-liquid we recommend using flavors made particularly for inhaling instead of using the commonly used food flavorings. While the usual mix requires about 10-20% flavoring, some are strong enough to require only 5%. Therefore, when using a certain flavor, make sure you read the labels and understand how it will impact your mix.

V. Nicotine Liquid

You will use diluted nicotine liquid that can be in PG or VG-base, available in various strengths. For beginners trying out how to make vape juice, you can choose any nicotine strength between 8 to 24mg and then experiment with it to find your sweet spot. If you want an apples-to-apples comparison with nicotine found in tobacco cigarettes, consider the following table:

Be extremely careful when handling nicotine liquid and do not ingest it. This can lead to a nicotine overdose. Children are very receptive to the effects of nicotine and can easily get sick or worse if they accidentally ingest it. Even a small amount can be deadly for a child. A 5mg dose killed this 15-month-old, for example.

Nicotine Level in Traditional Tobacco Cigarette

Nicotine Level for E-Liquid (Milligrams)

Nicotine-free

0

Ultra-light

8

Light

11

Regular

16

Strong

24

Unfiltered

36

 

Mixing Supplies:

I. Empty Plastic Bottles with Childproof Cap

As a beginner, using plastic bottle is your best bet. You don’t want to use big containers or expensive bottles, which are a bigger investment. Also, you want to use clean equipment every single time or you risk ruining your juice’s flavor with the residue from your previous experiments.

A fresh cheap bottle is a lot more cost effective and effective than an expensive, hard to clean container.

II. Syringes

For accurate measurements, get a separate syringe for each type of ingredient, mark the syringes and always use them for the same ingredient. Syringes can also come in handy if you’re using bottles with small openings. While counting drops also works, but when you’re working with small quantities, even a tiny difference can have a big impact on the overall e-juice. Remember, the volume of each drop depends on so many factors that there will always be some variation no matter how hard you try.

III. Tissue Paper or Napkins


The tissue paper is to wipe off any excess liquid that might spill. Even the best of us spills, so it’s better to be prepared, especially when learning how to make vape juice.

IV. Pair of Gloves

Since you’ll be dealing with nicotine, it’s ideal to use gloves. Upon contact with skin, it can be absorbed by your body which can be hazardous or can cause a skin rash.

Hiding behind the stereotype of a minor deal spilled e-liquid can be very toxic, but nicotine is very easily absorbed through the skin.

Use good quality, powder-free, rubber gloves to avoid contamination of your e-liquid.

V. Goggles/Face Shield

While we highly recommend using gloves, you may use goggles to protect your eyes if you are planning to frequently make e juice. Highly concentrated nicotine juice can be extremely dangerous for your eyes, and can even cause blindness. Only make this investment if you’re planning on making serious amounts of e juice.

How to Make Vape Juice in 5 Easy Steps:

Step 1. Prepare Nicotine

Here you’ll need some math skills to figure out the volume of nicotine required for the e-liquid to achieve the desired percentage. Since you’ll have diluted nicotine, use its strength in milligrams and the overall volume of the e-juice to calculate the required amount of nicotine. You can also use an online calculator or smartphone app to make life easy. 

Adding too much nicotine can be a mess up so add a little less than the amount recommended by your e-juice calculator or the e-juice recipe, then add to the mix according to taste after steeping. If the nicotine level is enough for you, but you still want more throat hit, adding a few drops of vodka will help. It doesn’t take much; about one to five percent will be good enough.

Step 2. Prepare Flavor(S)

This is where your skills and luck come in, especially if you want to make a new flavor. Also, this step can make or break the e-juice, and deserves your maximum consideration. You can either use one flavor or mix several different flavors. However, for beginners, we recommend starting with just one or two flavors and then go from there.  

Trial and error is the only approach to making e liquids, but as a rule of thumb, add a little less flavor than what the e-juice calculator or the recipe recommends. It’s better to start with less flavor than to ruin the entire batch by adding too much. After steeping, do a taste test and add flavoring according to taste. Unless you’re sure what you’re doing, never add more flavoring agent than 10% of the total volume of the end product. 

Also, artificial flavors are extremely complicated and can behave differently when used with other flavors or chemicals. For instance, if you added a recommended amount of flavor to your e-liquid but don’t feel anything, adding too much flavoring will usually not help, or might even backfire by washing out the flavor. When you’re mixing flavorings, it becomes even more complicated, as the final flavor can be totally different from what you expected.

Step 3. Prepare Base

You can choose any VG/PG blend depending on your recipe, but usually, it’s between 50/50 and 80/20. Just remember that diluted nicotine usually contains some levels of PG or VG, so don’t forget to take that volume into consideration. 

Step 4. Mix the Blend

When you’ve everything ready, mix it in a bottle and shake it, and I mean shake the heck out of it as most e-juices (especially high VG e-juices) are very thick, and need some shaking to properly mix the ingredients. 

Step 5. Steep

To steep it or not, is a personal preference Most e-juices will taste much better when steeped, just like good, aged wine. You can try out your freshly made e-liquid after you’ve experimented with how to make vape juice. If it tastes really good and is up to your expectations, you might want to skip this step. Basically nothing but oxidation of the components of your juice, steeping is a process in which you leave the ready-to-vape e-juice sit for a while in a cool, dark place. There is no predefined period as how long the juice should be steeped, but it can take a few days or even several months. Again the denser components will finally settle down at the bottom, so you’ll need to shake them every once in a while.

Ideally, you should leave the cap off and let oxygen play its trick and make the highly volatile fluids, such as alcohol, vaporize into the air. Some people sporadically put the bottles in warm water, which can actually speed up the steeping process. Another technique involves using a coffee mug warmer or a slow cooker, which can steep the fluids in days instead of weeks. However, in this case, you’ll need to frequently check the water level.

After steeping, not only flavor but also the color of the juice will change because of nicotine getting oxidized. Instead of a colorless or light pale-ish color, you might see a more alluring, yellowish or even light brown color. In fact, a change in color is a sign of your juice being properly steeped. When it comes to steeping there is nothing absolute. For better steeping, you need two things: patience and experimentation. The process is long and monotonous, but the outcome is worth the wait.

Sample E-Juice Recipes

custom e-juices

The whole point of learning how to make vape juice is to try something new, that nobody else has ever tried. But to help you get started on the right foot, here are a couple of recipes that I personally made and am proud of. In fact, since the process is exactly the same, we’ll only list the ingredients here.

Whimsical Milky Chocolate E-Juice Recipe

  • 70/20 VG/PG blend (approximately 16 ml and 5 ml)
  • Diluted nicotine (according to the strength, as desired)
  • 5 ml Coconut Milk flavoring
  • 5 ml Chocolate Roll flavoring
  • 3 ml vodka or distilled water

* Yields 30 ml of intensely flavored e-juice, and tastes best after at least 4 weeks of steeping.

Minty Paradise E-Juice Recipe

  • 50/50 VG PG blend (12 ml each)
  • Diluted nicotine (according to the strength, as desired)
  • 3 ml Peppermint flavoring
  • 1 ml Menthol flavoring
  • 5 ml Honey Dew flavoring

* Yields 30 ml of soft, cool flavor. Longer steeping results in a milder flavor, but if you like intensely rich flavor, just steep for a few days or skip it altogether.

Tips on Making a Great Tasting Vape Juice

  • If you were to walk away with just one tip from this entire article, let it be this: take notes of every single measurement, and every single step you take in making an e-juice. Many users have expressed how they’ve once made the perfect mix but can never replicate it because they never took note of the ratios and amounts.
  • Go online, there are several social portals for e-juice recipe sharing where you can learn from others and share your great recipes.
  • Try to use flavorings made for inhaling instead of using the commonly used food flavorings.
  • If you are making e-juice for the first time, don’t make a lot neither make too little. Because making a lot of e-juice could prove to be an expensive disaster while making very little leaves a very little margin of error, as smaller variation in amount can have a greater impact.
  • If you want a great throat hit, add more PG.
  • If you want dense vapor clouds, but want a mild throat hit, add more VG.
  • E-liquids with high VG are better suited for sub-ohm vaping, as they not only offer bigger clouds but also VG, being more viscous, requires more heat from the vaporizer.
  • Handle nicotine safely. Make sure kids, as well as pets, don’t have access to your “laboratory”, because nicotine can be poisonous if ingested.

Conclusion

Ideally, your drill should be like:

Make E-juice ► Steep  Enjoy the Vape  Repeat

But let’s be realistic, learning how to make vape juice can be time-consuming, but fun. It requires a lot of testing before you create the perfect mix. Whereas once you find it, it’s easy to replicate. It also costs less overall, compared to buying e-juice over and over again.

That being said, there are things that can go wrong, and sometimes the process of tinkering and re-mixing can become tedious and tiring. Not all vapers are built to create their own DIY e-liquid. Those who are not cut out for it may try to make their own, but in the long run, it’s better for them to trust big companies with experience that have a host of flavors to choose from.

Important Notice: If you attempt to follow the instructions in this guide, you’re doing it at your own risk. VapingDaily.com can under no circumstances be held responsible for any injuries or damage caused by the use, misuse of the info contained on this page. Also, remember that mixing own e-juice is meant for personal consumption. Don’t think about selling the juices as this is illegal.

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Posted by
Thanush Poulsen

Being a regular Sweden student, I discovered innovative ways of living healthier. And with my very first e-cigarette, I’ve got obsessed with all things digital. So vaping collided my interests in electronics, science, and health. I enjoy bringing people into the world of vaping through my reviews, guides, and best-of lists.

38 Comments
  1. comment-avatar

    Michelle Schill

    September 2, 2017 at 1:06 pm Reply

    Can you use only VG and leave out the PG? I vape sub-ohm.

    • comment-avatar

      Richard

      April 4, 2018 at 9:57 pm Reply

      you can but you;ll burn out your coil really fast.

    • comment-avatar

      Austin

      April 12, 2018 at 2:17 am Reply

      I do, but i use nicotine suspended in PG so it’s not %100 vg

    • comment-avatar

      Dwahna

      April 18, 2018 at 4:25 am Reply

      Hi. I’m a newbie at vaping. I have found your information very honest and helpful but there are no responses to the questions that I feel “vapingdaily” should be more involved. Its a good site and I’d like your opinions. Vape on 🍼🍜🍝🍦

    • comment-avatar

      James

      September 26, 2018 at 10:24 am Reply

      Not with sub-Ohm its too thick

  2. comment-avatar

    Edwin Potgieter

    October 11, 2017 at 3:13 pm Reply

    Great where can I buy this stuff
    regards
    Edwin

    • comment-avatar

      Richard

      April 4, 2018 at 9:59 pm Reply

      Almost all can be found on Amazon except liquid nicotine.

    • comment-avatar

      Melisia Stewart

      August 24, 2018 at 1:21 pm Reply

      Need to buy the vg of juice nicotine liquids but don’t know where to find it.Please let me know.

      • comment-avatar

        Lisa

        September 20, 2018 at 7:09 pm Reply

        I buy online.

  3. comment-avatar

    Tien

    October 21, 2017 at 11:40 am Reply

    Hi I’m Tien
    Thanks for the DIY guide I find it easy to understand and helpful
    I’m learning to make my own juice and I want to make Mary Jane
    Do you have a recipe

    • comment-avatar

      Dwahna

      April 18, 2018 at 4:34 am Reply

      I’ve been wondering the same thing. I can’t remember the site I came across the other day that did have a “mary Jane” (I was distracted) in their range. I, unfortunately need the real and can’t picture me vaping just the flavor.

  4. comment-avatar

    Edwin Potgieter

    October 25, 2017 at 7:26 pm Reply

    How can I buy your stuff

  5. comment-avatar

    Kelly L Collins

    October 27, 2017 at 12:20 am Reply

    I’m wanting the old juice of 80/20. When it was 20% water. But dying for. Red Hot Candy

  6. comment-avatar

    Kelly L Collins

    October 27, 2017 at 12:23 am Reply

    Red Hot Candy, little sweet, little more cinnamon.

  7. comment-avatar

    Tina

    October 27, 2017 at 8:00 pm Reply

    Would this be correct for making a 30 mil bottle, the nicotine level seems too high. Please help. Ty.
    Nicotine juice 24 mg (100% VG) 7.5
    PG dilutant. 2.70
    VG dilutant 13.50
    Total base23.729.2979
    Bavarain Cream (TPA) 0.9
    DX Graham Cracker (TPA) 1.2
    (Strawberry ripe) (TPA) 2.7
    DX Sweet Cream (TPA) 0.9
    DX Vanilla Cupcake (TPA) 0.6
    Totals3035.59100

    Strength: 6 mg
    PG/VG-ratio: 30/70
    Flavor total: 6.3 ml / 6.3g (21%)

    • comment-avatar

      Austin

      April 12, 2018 at 2:19 am Reply

      That nicotine amount should result in a 6 but i would recommend using less pg if the hit is too harsh

  8. comment-avatar

    Vicki Weaver

    November 5, 2017 at 8:59 am Reply

    You answered my biggest concern and that is after a while my juice turned yellow. I couldn’t figure out why. Now I know and better yet it was steeped perfectly.
    I’m a beginner and I totally enjoy making my own juice. The only trouble I have is the MATH!!!
    Thanx for all the info. and I do appreciate your site!!
    Vicki

  9. comment-avatar

    Vicki Weaver

    November 5, 2017 at 9:00 am Reply

    Thank you!

  10. comment-avatar

    Lee Thornsby

    November 5, 2017 at 8:47 pm Reply

    What’s your nicotine percentage on these flavours or is it zero

  11. comment-avatar

    Dave

    January 2, 2018 at 7:08 am Reply

    NIce! I am going to try this out. I had one question. Is it possible to make a CBD e-liquid?

  12. comment-avatar

    Ivy

    March 8, 2018 at 11:35 am Reply

    This is great advice. I have never really made vape juice myself. I bought Vapour2 few months ago and i just get all the flavours the brand make.(actually there is good selection). But for sure will try it, sound interesting. I was always willing to have chocolate with coffee, that is what i love in my cakes:-)

  13. comment-avatar

    gordon

    March 16, 2018 at 7:39 pm Reply

    were can I buy the propylene glycol, vegetable glycol at???

    • comment-avatar

      Yeet

      November 20, 2018 at 11:48 pm Reply

      Any store

  14. comment-avatar

    Amy

    May 13, 2018 at 6:48 am Reply

    I found a good follow up article to this that has top 10 easy recipes: https://vapingdaily.com/best-vape-juices-and-e-liquids/top-10-e-liquid-recipes/

  15. comment-avatar

    Lawana Dennis

    May 29, 2018 at 7:15 am Reply

    I want to taste graplberry breexe. What do you suggest

  16. comment-avatar

    Keith Perry

    July 2, 2018 at 10:55 pm Reply

    Hi.. I’ve been vamping for years now and stumbled upon DIYing last year some time. I am a sub-ohm vaper and even make all my own coil builds. I prefer 80/20 vg/pg straight up and a formula I found for nicotine that really helps is (%nic desired/nic mg strength)*desired volume=how much nic to use.
    And steeping with a slow cooker is the Only way to go! Check lots on warm only.. 1 hour or so for fruits, 2 or so for desserts, and 4 for tobaccos… Happy vaping!

    • comment-avatar

      Matt

      July 20, 2018 at 5:20 pm Reply

      If you wouldn’t mind, I’m brand new to this and plan to be using a 100% VG mixture with no nicotien. I have a question or two an experienced person may be able to answer.

      The first is, do I need to add anything to make it taste sweet? I would like it to since I’m going to be making chocolate style liquids.

      The second is, when you steep in a slow cooker, is that with the lid on or off? I would guess on because otherwise your flavoring would evaporate but is there any risk of the bottle rupturing?

      Thank you for considering my questions!

  17. comment-avatar

    Caroline Haywood

    July 19, 2018 at 7:52 am Reply

    What does “sub ohm” vaping mean please?

    • comment-avatar

      Jim

      September 15, 2018 at 12:28 am Reply

      Any coil ohm less running than 1.0 ohm…majority are .25-.90 ex: .45-.90 ohm

  18. comment-avatar

    Eleanor Jeffries

    August 5, 2018 at 8:15 am Reply

    Hi where do you buy the ingredients to make your own oils

  19. comment-avatar

    Mikayla Loveless

    August 30, 2018 at 12:09 am Reply

    Im trying to replicate the single flavor recipe for boogenshizzle fried ice cream. . . And I’ve been making eliquids for over a year now but my husband did most of the math. He died this year, im just trying to figure out the math on an 80/20 ratio of pg / vg with making 240ml , at 3% nicotine and just the one flavor of boogenshizzle concentrate. What would the percentages (&mls) be to make this?? I feel so dumb. I can follow a recipe with pre mixed pg / vg with the nicotine already on it but ive never had to do all this math. It’s probably really simple, I’m just not understanding….

  20. comment-avatar

    Chase Rainey

    September 4, 2018 at 12:48 am Reply

    Where do we get the flavoring? Can you give us a link? Extracts like vanilla or peppermint is unhealthy, correct?

  21. comment-avatar

    Jesse

    September 10, 2018 at 8:51 am Reply

    Sounds like a juice I used to buy

  22. comment-avatar

    Jason Pyktel

    September 15, 2018 at 7:15 pm Reply

    I said screw it with a vaping flavor ban in play and bought a food flavor despite not recommending that in article. I’m not gonna be screwed. I plan on making natural extracts like lemon and orange.

    natural and organic eliquid exist. the only way can be natural and organic is if they are doing just that what stated. minus the food flavor direction took.

  23. comment-avatar

    marios

    September 30, 2018 at 7:09 am Reply

    i made my first e juice yesterday and its not sweet enough sould i add sweetner or something?

    • comment-avatar

      Jackson Villa

      October 24, 2018 at 10:48 am Reply

      you should probably use sweetener. or CAPS* super sweet @ 0.5 to 1.5% don’t use more than 2% or it will gunk up your coils.

  24. comment-avatar

    Tony Brady

    October 3, 2018 at 3:28 am Reply

    Hey thanks a lot mate I’m from Australia will give it a go

  25. comment-avatar

    Bobby Wales

    November 22, 2018 at 7:50 pm Reply

    May be a dumb question. I can’t seem to get the recipe for tobacco flavor juice. Do you have a recipe for tobacco flavor juice?

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