Annoying Flavor Fluctuations? Why E-Juice Taste Can Change
Ever wonder why your favorite e-juice flavor changed or doesn't taste the way its supposed to anymore?
Producing e-juice is a complex process and prone to variations. In addition, e-juice flavor can change as it ages and depending on how it's used or stored.
All of these factors play a role in how your juice tastes. It can be frustrating and sometimes happen without much warning, but there are ways to control the flavor and keep your juice tasting the way it should.
This is a completely different issue from what is known as “vaper's tongue,” a condition that's been discussed on our website before. Vapers tongue has to do with your senses becoming fatigued by vaping, but there can also be issues with the e-juice itself.
So how can you ensure that the taste of your favorite e-juice flavor doesn't change?
Here are some factors to consider and steps you can take if you're NOT experiencing vapers tongue…
Store E-Liquid Correctly
There can be slight, or drastic differences in taste over the life of your e-juice due to a concept known as “steeping.” Think of it like a cup of tea or a bottle of wine. Leaving the bottle siting around for an extended period of time results in a deeper, more full bodied flavor and gives the ingredients time to mature. I have found that especially acidic or tart flavors need time to steep or they'll be way too overpowering early in their usable lives. Other flavors need little or no steeping.
If e-juice is purchased fresh (without being pre-steeped), it's a good idea to let it sit for at least a week or two before you use it, but even if you steep your juice properly, its taste may change for other reasons. Improper storage is just one issue that could cause your e-juice flavor to change.
All e-liquid should be kept in a cool, dark environment when not in use. Some people store their juice in the refrigerator, but normal (60F-70F) room temperature should suffice. Direct sunlight and heat will accelerate the steeping process, and in some cases may cause your e-juice to spoil.
Dirty Atomizers & Coils
E-juice flavor changes can also be tracked to poor maintenance of your equipment. It's a good idea to clean your tank thoroughly every time you change flavors, and it's is especially important with strong flavors like cinnamon, menthol or mint. In the end it might be best to have separate tanks and coils just for those e-juice flavors as it will be hard to get rid of their lingering taste.
Also, when e-liquid is vaporized, many flavors will leave a buildup of residue on your coils. Over time this can cause a burnt taste and/or dull the flavor of your e-juice. If possible, “dry burn” your coils to remove the residue buildup and / or replace the coils regularly. This will result in a consistently positive flavor experience regardless of the juice flavor or atomizer.
Nicotine & Power Levels
Your nicotine level will play a part in how the juice will taste as well. Higher nicotine levels will have more of a kick and the flavor may not come through as strongly as low nicotine levels like 0 or 3 mg. This is just one of the reasons why “drippers” and RDA users report better flavor quality, since lower nicotine levels are required due to the higher volume of vapor produced by these devices.
Another factor to consider is if you've changed the power level of your device. An e-juice flavor may behave differently at different power levels, and no two juices will behave the same. Make sure you haven't changed the wattage or voltage level of your device if the flavor suddenly changes, and don't be afraid to experiment. Adjusting the power level can often solve the problem.
If you're sick or under the weather, it's not uncommon for your e-juice to taste differently. In particular, any sinus congestion will reduce your sense of taste and smell; and dehydration can make the situation even worse. E-juice contains “humectants,” which are glycol based substances that extend shelf life. Humectants absorb moisture from your mouth and throat and accelerate dehydration, so be sure to drink plenty of water to help maintain a level flavor profile at all times.
If you haven't quit analogs completely or have a smoking relapse, remember that cigarettes dull your tastebuds. After switching back to vaping following a cigarette, e-juice flavor may be dulled for a while until your body eliminates the tar and buildup from your body. If you're doing both, don't expect to have the same flavor experience as others with the same e-juice because of this fact.
Buy Quality E-Juice
In the end it's also good to keep in mind that you get what you pay for. Cheaper e-juice can sometimes use lower quality flavorings that have a shorter shelf life.
Consider purchasing premium e-liquid from reputable sellers, as their juices will stay fresher longer due to higher quality ingredients.