How to Make Vape Juice Without PG or VG?

If you are into vaping, you probably already know that almost all commercial vape juices contain vegetable glycerin (VG) and/or propylene glycol (PG).

These ingredients are generally used to make liquids vaporize easier and transmit the nicotine and/or flavoring into the vapor.

However, you may be interested in making your own vape juice, and you may want to know how to make vape juice without PG or VG as ingredients.  Let's look at how it's done.

The Role of Propylene Glycol and Vegetable Glycerin in Vape Juice

In most vape juice, propylene glycol is used to absorb and carry the flavoring agents as well as being a thinning agent, and vegetable glycerin is used to create the vapor. These ingredients have been widely considered to be safe and effective at creating a satisfying vapor and flavor experiencing in an e-cigarette, but recent studies are starting to cause doubt about these additives  having a neutral impact on user health when these additives are heated and vaporized rather than swallowed. This is driving development of healthier alternatives for CBD vape juice such as CBD distillate.

Propylene Glycol in Bottles

Why Avoid PG or VG in Vape Juice?

There are a number of reasons why people may want to avoid these ingredients in their vape juice:

They find them too sweet

Vegetable glycerin, in particular, is also used in a wide range of foods as a sweetener. Some people find that their vape juice becomes too sweet overall and want a less candy-like flavor

They find them too drying

Propylene glycol is a hygroscopic chemical, that naturally absorbs water. When a person vapes too much and inhales too much propylene glycol, the vapor may dehydrate their eyes, nose, and mouth. Dehydration may also cause “vaper's tongue,” in which the mouth and tongue get dry and they experience a reduced ability to taste flavors.

Heating PG and PEG causes chemical changes in these additives that are risky to health

A study carried out on what the effect of high temperatures are on PG and PEG food that PG and PEG 400 produced high levels of acetaldehyde and formaldehyde when heated to 230°C, and prolonged exposure with heavy use would definitely not be healthy for you, reducing  the health advantages of vaping CBD.

Allergies and sensitivities

Some people may be allergic, or at least sensitive, to the VG and PG in vape juice, and would like an alternative. Symptoms of allergy to propylene glycol can include a mild tingling in the mouth or throat, to inflammation and irritation in the respiratory system. Most reactions are to propylene glycol, and are the same effects as dehydration. Some experience greater phlegm or coating in their throat after heavy vaping with vegetable glycerin.

DIY Vape Juice With No PG or VG

You can make a DIY vape juice with no propylene glycol, only vegetable glycerin. This may be too sweet for your preference, and the mixture may be too thick, and may need to be thinned with distilled water. It will have less flavor, and less “throat hit” than vape juices with PG.

You could also make a DIY vape juice with no vegetable glycerin, and only propylene glycol, although this is less common. It will have more flavor and less sweetness, and potentially be more dehydrating, but will have much less vapor. Some people prefer less vapor, so that their vaping is more discrete.

Alternative Ingredients

PEG

Some vapers have experimented with polyethelene glycol. Polyethelene glycol is considered a  non-toxic polyether compound, but studies show that vaporizing this compound means it is not no longer non-toxic. It's use in vaping is very limited, and it may have the same effects as PG for those who are sensitive to it. Some feel that PEG 400 is smoother than PG, although others disagree. PEG also carries health issue risk when heated, same as PG.

Triacetin

Triacetin is a triglyceride compound that is colorless and odorless, and non-toxic when eaten or inhaled. It is increasingly common as a flavor enhancer in vape juice, but it also has a detrimental effect on polycarbonate tanks.

Because of their flavor-carrying and vaporizing effects, almost no vapers make a vape juice with no VG or PG, and vegetable glycerin is generally regarded as being essential to making an effective juice for vaping.

Terpenes

As studies begin to clarify the picture about the potential health risks of heating and vaporizing VG, PG and PEG in a vaporizer, consumers and manufacturers are starting look for alternatives to avoid the hazardous byproducts of heating these agents. One alternative is to use natural terpenes as a thinning agent. 

These oils are used in aroma therapy and you may consider experimenting with a terpene oil that appeals to you as a thinning agent. You can buy pure oils at health food shops and most good aroma-therapy shops.

Natural terpenes in cannabis produce flavor variations and can have positive effects on the user, depending on the terpene.

A leafly.com  article on terpenes gives some ideas on this topic and has a neat guide on different terpenes you may like to consider. 

Alternative Ingredients

High VG Vape Juice

There are some vape juices on the market now that are high VG or only VG, with no PG at all, but VG is probably still  harmful when heated, but less so than PG and PEG. High VG vape juices have a minimal amount of PG, just to carry the flavor. Some of these vape juices may use PEG 400, instead of PG.

Many VG only vape juices have the benefit of potentially being organic and natural, depending on the flavoring ingredients and compounds, however VG is not completely harmless as an additive when heated, but less harmful than PEG.

If you are sensitive to propylene glycol, remember that it is not essential in your vape juice. You can use PEG 400 to carry more flavor, or simply thin the juice with a little distilled water and have a reduced flavor experience, or you may consider a terpene. There are many high VG or all VG DIY vape juice recipes available, and it's easy to experiment, bearing in mind the health warning.

If you want to avoid the thick vapor and sweetness of vegetable glycerin, you could try to make an all PG vape juice, and some people have done so. However, these aren't generally regarded as satisfying vape juices and the health angle is now considered a problem.

We personally prefer CBD vape juice that is free of flavoring additives, either pure vaporizing form or with VG. CBD oil vape juices offer health advantages and are a healthier option all round. You can make your own CBD vape juice using a quality CBD oil, or save yourself the trouble and get one of the many  CBD vaping products that are now easily available.

Given time and development, additive-free CBD Distillate cartridges will be available on the market being pure CBD that needs no thinning for a vape.

Leave a Reply 16 comments

Bryan - January 18, 2019 Reply

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    VapeMaster - February 25, 2019 Reply

    Hey Bryan, Thanks for the nice comment. Glad you have enjoyed your visit 🙂

    Supz Nutrition - June 23, 2019 Reply

    Oh my goodness! an amazing article dude. Thank you However I am experiencing issue with ur rss . Dont know why Unable to subscribe to it. Is there anyone getting identical rss problem? Anyone who knows kindly respond. Thx

      VapeMaster - July 2, 2019 Reply

      Hi there, Please add yourself as a subscriber for the free e-book and you will then get information about the lastest posts sent out to you each week. Thanks for the enquiry and comment.

    licitujme - November 1, 2019 Reply

    Many of the best and most widely used flavorings come from companies which have no intentional connection to vaping whatsoever: companies like LorAnn and Capella—which started off making baking extracts and coffee flavorings, respectively.

    purchase cannabis online - November 4, 2019 Reply

    Thanks 🙂

Anibal - February 17, 2019 Reply

Great blog! Vаluable information for vapors.
keep it up.

    VapeMaster - February 21, 2019 Reply

    Hey Anibal, Thanks for the nice comment 🙂

Pamela - August 14, 2019 Reply

You link to Facebook isn’t working. Would like to be able to follow you. Thank you

    VapeMaster - August 18, 2019 Reply

    Hi Pamela, Thanks for comment and nudge about Facebook. At this point we have not started a Facebook page and we are primarily posting socially on Pintrest. The team is looking at Facebook at the moment but we need to be cautious about how we promote the site on some social media platforms considering the topic. Cheers

Luca Pisano - September 29, 2019 Reply

Hi, i’m new in the world of vaping and i heard that this liquids are a bit tossic and not very healty; is there a way to create a liquid that has very low levels of harming?

    VapeMaster - October 5, 2019 Reply

    Hi Luke,

    Thanks for the comment and query.
    You want to absolutely avoid anything that is available on the street. There is a serious problem with cartridges being uncertified for content that people have been buying on the street where they have no way of knowing what they are putting in their lungs. The CDC and FDA have been investigating vape cartridges at the bottom of the crisis and many that are sold as THC have been found to be tainted if not plain toxic. Additives such as tocopherol (vitamin E) are also very dangerous to the lungs. Dank cartridges are at the forefront of the investigation.
    One root cause is that cartridges are being filled with no consideration for certified consumer health in terms of purity, quality or certified lab testing to confirm for the consumer what they are getting. This is absolutely reckless, abusive and dangerous and from this situation there has been a sudden rash of illnesses and some deaths.
    Another problem rests with flavors used in vape-juice. Some additives used to create flavor in nicotine based vape-juice are dangerous. I might add that some flavors are and issue more than others and it depends on the amount. This gets us into the area of terpenes vs flavors, but there are some extreme issues with some flavor additives. An example of this the additive used to create a buttery flavor. This results in a condition called ‘popcorn lung’ as it is the same flavor additive used for artificial butter flavor in popcorn and in the past popcorn makers have got this condition from inhaling too much of this flavor additive in the production process.
    Our position is that if you are vaping CBD or THC then you need to do your own research and regulation and you should get the certified pure product from a government dispensary or a highly responsible company supplier that can give you a certified lab analysis report for the content and strength of the product you are buying.
    At this stage, I would avoid all additives for flavor, cloud and viscosity even PG, VG, PEG and whatever the flavor additive might be. Just get the pure product form. If the lab purity certification does not exist or is refused, don’t buy the product. (I might add that the recent rash of illnesses and deaths have happened very quickly and vape-juices using PG and VG have not been an issue for the last 10 odd years, until very recently with the explosion of unregulated and illicit production – so play it safe)
    When you vape, do so according to the the dosage requirement set by a medical professional (if for medical reasons) or if recreational, get some advice on how to vape safely and responsibly. Buy a quality vape device that allows you to regulate the temperature and vape pure form CBD oil or THC without additives, you don’t want the device to run to hot (avoid overheating the vape juice or oil past the heat setting needed as this can cause a chemical change that is not good for you, especially if there are additives involved). Be also sure to get advice on the the best vape device for battery safety. Do not leave the device on when not being used and do not leave it on charge and unattended once the battery is full.
    We have an article on the site on how to make your own THC juice at home which you might like to read.
    The other point I would like to make for you is that dry herb vaping is not an issue in this investigation. The issue is focussed on oil cartridges. If you want to vape dry herb, I would venture to say that this would be the safest option of all. The founder of NORML, the DC lobby organization for marijuana legalization, has made the point that there has never been an issue with dry herb vaping to his knowledge. I support his position on dry herb vaping and would say that if you have are still worried, stick to vaping dry herb marijuana and avoid oils altogether.
    So, in conclusion, health comes FIRST, don’t buy ANYTHING on the street, buy a best quality vaporizer which has temperature regulation, buy only lab certified and top quality CBD or THC oil from a certified company and ask for advice on how to use your vape safely, how much CBD or THC is safe and remember that dry herb vaping is regarded as the safest option.
    If you want to use CBD or THC for a medical condition, get medical guidance first and if for recreational purposes, do your homework about using any of these substances, either on the net from sites like Leafly or NORML, from a medical professional or from a licensed dispensary with experienced and caring staff.
    I hope this has been a help for you. Take care.

Luke - September 30, 2019 Reply

Hi, i’m new in the world of vaping and i heard that this liquids are a bit tossic and not very healty; is there a way to create a liquid that has very low levels of harming?

    VapeMaster - October 5, 2019 Reply

    Hi Luke,

    Thanks for the comment and query.
    You want to absolutely avoid anything that is available on the street. There is a serious problem with cartridges being uncertified for content that people have been buying on the street where they have no way of knowing what they are putting in their lungs. The CDC and FDA have been investigating vape cartridges at the bottom of the crisis and many that are sold as THC have been found to be tainted if not plain toxic. Additives such as tocopherol (vitamin E) are also very dangerous to the lungs. Dank cartridges are at the forefront of the investigation.
    One root cause is that cartridges are being filled with no consideration for certified consumer health in terms of purity, quality or certified lab testing to confirm for the consumer what they are getting. This is absolutely reckless, abusive and dangerous and from this situation there has been a sudden rash of illnesses and some deaths.
    Another problem rests with flavors used in vape-juice. Some additives used to create flavor in nicotine based vape-juice are dangerous. I might add that some flavors are and issue more than others and it depends on the amount. This gets us into the area of terpenes vs flavors, but there are some extreme issues with some flavor additives. An example of this the additive used to create a buttery flavor. This results in a condition called ‘popcorn lung’ as it is the same flavor additive used for artificial butter flavor in popcorn and in the past popcorn makers have got this condition from inhaling too much of this flavor additive in the production process.
    Our position is that if you are vaping CBD or THC then you need to do your own research and regulation and you should get the certified pure product from a government dispensary or a highly responsible company supplier that can give you a certified lab analysis report for the content and strength of the product you are buying.
    At this stage, I would avoid all additives for flavor, cloud and viscosity even PG, VG, PEG and whatever the flavor additive might be. Just get the pure product form. If the lab purity certification does not exist or is refused, don’t buy the product. (I might add that the recent rash of illnesses and deaths have happened very quickly and vape-juices using PG and VG have not been an issue for the last 10 odd years, until very recently with the explosion of unregulated and illicit production – so play it safe)
    When you vape, do so according to the the dosage requirement set by a medical professional (if for medical reasons) or if recreational, get some advice on how to vape safely and responsibly. Buy a quality vape device that allows you to regulate the temperature and vape pure form CBD oil or THC without additives, you don’t want the device to run to hot (avoid overheating the vape juice or oil past the heat setting needed as this can cause a chemical change that is not good for you, especially if there are additives involved). Be also sure to get advice on the the best vape device for battery safety. Do not leave the device on when not being used and do not leave it on charge and unattended once the battery is full.
    We have an article on the site on how to make your own THC juice at home which you might like to read.
    The other point I would like to make for you is that dry herb vaping is not an issue in this investigation. The issue is focussed on oil cartridges. If you want to vape dry herb, I would venture to say that this would be the safest option of all. The founder of NORML, the DC lobby organization for marijuana legalization, has made the point that there has never been an issue with dry herb vaping to his knowledge. I support his position on dry herb vaping and would say that if you have are still worried, stick to vaping dry herb marijuana and avoid oils altogether.
    So, in conclusion, health comes FIRST, don’t buy ANYTHING on the street, buy a best quality vaporizer which has temperature regulation, buy only lab certified and top quality CBD or THC oil from a certified company and ask for advice on how to use your vape safely, how much CBD or THC is safe and remember that dry herb vaping is regarded as the safest option.
    If you want to use CBD or THC for a medical condition, get medical guidance first and if for recreational purposes, do your homework about using any of these substances, either on the net from sites like Leafly or NORML, from a medical professional or from a licensed dispensary with experienced and caring staff.
    I hope this has been a help for you. Take care.

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