If you vape, have vaped, or are thinking about vaping, all the stories in the news might be deterring you lately. People are now being hospitalized from vaping after everyone seemed to think vaping was a harmless alternative to cigarettes.
You may be worried– Should I throw away my Juul? Is my vape juice safe? What were the people hospitalized using? Although there are no definitive answers on how dangerous vaping is, it is imperative not to buy counterfeit vape products. If you have no idea what is in the vape juice, you could be inhaling heavy metals, like nickel, tin, and lead or diacetyl, a chemical linked to serious lung disease.
Most things we consume have some sort of regulation. The FDA controls our food supply and makes sure that what we either ingest, or put on our bodies won't harm us. Vapes have similar regulations put on them. For example, the batteries vaping use must meet certain standards as well as having a premarket tobacco application. The batteries must be made out of lithium ion, steel, or plastics. I
f you are purchasing a counterfeit vape, these regulations are no longer in place. Business owners selling counterfeit vape products may skirt around these standards. Therefore, the products can be dangerous and potentially harmful. Vapes have exploded while charging, as well as during use.
Vapes have seriously injured people. Even if a counterfeit vape is cheaper, it is not worth the risk of getting hurt. The reason fake vapes are cheaper, is due to these government requirements not being in place.
Fake and counterfeit vape products use cheapcheap products and materials. They cut corners in many ways to save money. This can include the batteries, the chip, the processor, and even the way the vape is engineered.
Having lower quality materials in a vape is dangerous, but also can waste your money in the long run. You may have to buy batteries more often since they won't last as long, or even cause your vape to break after a bit of use because they aren't made as well.
Using counterfeit coils is also dangerous on many levels. The coil wire cannot properly resist heat, so it causes you to inhale vaporized, metallic particles.
3. Unreliable Manufacturers
When you are buying from 3rd parties or unreliable manufacturers, it can be impossible to get in contact with them for any problems. If something does go wrong, there is a high possibility that you may not recover the damages. This leads to spending more money on buying vapes because if you can't get in contact with the suppliers after an issue occurs, there is no way to get refunded or a new product.
4. The Experience
The actual vaping experience may not be as good with a counterfeit vape. They are not crafted as well, don't use high quality materials, and skirt around regulations. It is not worth it to save money when you are jeopardizing first your health and safety, but second, the whole reasons you are buying a vape anyways–for the experience. The way the vape hits and how smooth it is can be different with a higher quality vape.
How to Spot a Counterfeit
There are many ways to spot a counterfeit vape. Some of the most common are looking at the authenticity code, typos on packaging, and price. Price is the easiest to spot a counterfeit because if you are looking to purchase a vape significantly lower priced than most, it probably is using lower quality materials.
A good rule of thumb is that if something seems too good to be true, it probably is. Many fake vapes are sold on places like Amazon, Ebay, or 3rd party websites. Looking at authenticity codes is important as well. However, the only way to check these are by having the physical product, so you have to purchase it to find out.
This doesn't allow for you to have as much of a chance to return or exchange your product. If the authenticity code is fake, it will not check out with the manufacturer. Counterfeits either fake a code or use a stolen one.
Staying Safe When You Vape
Now that you hopefully have not purchased a counterfeit vape, there are still precautions you need to keep in mind when vaping. Make sure to take care of your batteries. This includes not leaving your vape in a hot car because it can cause the battery to overheat and explode.
The juice is also another part of the vape to be mindful of. If it does spill out of the cartridge, ensure it doesn't get on your skin. If it does, wash it off as soon as you can. This hazard can be mitigated by purchasing juice from reputable sources.
There have been some issues lately with putting other substances in vapes when that's not what they are meant for. It can be extremely dangerous to put other liquids inside a vape because the vape is specifically crafted for a certain substance. Other forms can cause the vape to malfunction. Keep your vape in a safe place and make sure to stay healthy in other ways as well!
It's up to You
All in all it is on you to check your vape and make sure it is not counterfeit. Some ways to tell are by looking to see if your product has a unique id code, ensure you are only buying from an authorized vendor, and only purchase vapes directly from the e-comm channel or manufacturer themselves.
Also do your research. Look up the name and place of origin of your vape, as well as the supplier and information you can find about them. Vaping is a great way to curb cigarette addiction and socialize, but it is so important to be careful and informed. Like anything, knowing what you are putting into your body and lungs is essential for good health. Just don't be stupid about it and you'll be fine.