If you listen to critics of the vaping culture, you would think that it’s a temporary trend. Vaping is being labeled by many people as ‘just another fad’ that will die out as other alternatives pop up.

It’s being labeled as the urban man’s way of staying addicted to technology, if not the traditional forms of smoking. The sleek and futuristic design makes it look like a prop from a science fiction movie that the consumer class could obsess over.

They also say that vaping is a “new & un-tested” thing, and this argument is being used to point to e-cigs’ lack of safety. But that’s not true. E-cigs are not a product of the 21st century. They were invented a long time ago.

Herbert Gilbert1963Herbert A. Gilbert patented the first electronic cigarette. His idea was that smoking the traditional way was gross, since it involved inhaling burning stuff. He called it a “smokeless non-tobacco cigarette” that would “provide a safe and harmless means for and method of smoking by replacing burning tobacco and paper with heated, moist, flavored air.”

Even though Gilbert’s ingenuity was remarkable, the product didn’t really take off in the 1960s marketplace. He stated recently in an interview, “Timing can be everything, and I was ahead of my time, and in the midst of what some might say was the most powerful advertising period of big tobacco.” See, the world at the time wasn’t really ready to smoke out of an electronic stick; and yes – Big T was booming, and it advertised so well to the general public that they thought no need of an alternative. You don’t feel the need to seek alternatives when your brain is bombarded with messages such as “9 out 10 doctors smoke Camels.

Hon Lik

2003Chinese pharmacist named Hon Lik, out of his hatred for his cigarette addiction, found it necessary to devise an alternative. He had been grieving with every puff of smoke he took that the same smoke had killed his father.

He was going to bed one night and forgot to take his nicotine patch off, and the adverse reaction which followed in his dream led him to the invention of the modern e-cigarette. In his dream, he was drowning in the sea and his lungs were filling up with water, but all of a sudden his will to live somehow changed the water to vapor and he could now easily breathe. This was the basic concept that lead to the invention of the e-cigarette.

By 2004, Hon finally created a device that would make his dream into reality and made him the father of modern vaping.  After a lot of trials and even more errors, in 2006, he released a device for the public that consisted of a nicotine solution suspended in propylene glycol, an ultrasonic atomizer and a battery in a plastic casing under his company’s brand name Ruyan. This was to be his final product that changed the world of smoking and smokers all over the world. By 2007, e-cigarettes were making a statement all over the world.

TodayVaping in 2015 is as big of an industry as big tobacco once was, when it just began to emerge in the mainstream. The basic concept of how vapes work has remained the same, however the device itself has gone through many technological changes and customizations based on consumer demand.

The main part of Hon’s original device was the ultrasonic atomizer, and has been replaced with a cartomizer which is basically the cartridge and the atomizer combined. This assembly is similar to another concept known as the clearomizer. The nicotine solution used in Hon’s device has also got alternatives, instead of the original 2-3 flavors, there are almost 30-35 thousand different types of solutions. Not only this, but now there exist mods that can change the device as per the user’s requirements.

Atomizer Clearomizer CartomizerGenerally, “vapers” (a term used for those fond of vaping) prefer devices that give the thickest and biggest clouds of vapor. Each device can be customized to suit the vaper’s personality. Vaping has become one of the leaders in helping people get off their smoking habits and turn them to vaping. Organizations like Vape-a-Vet send free e-cigs to retired and active military personnel in order to help them give up traditional smoking methods.

The flavors available today are no way close to what Gilbert or Lik would’ve imagined. Dessert flavored solutions ruled the e-cig trends’ world this year, from cheesecake to custards to strawberry shortcake are favorites. So much so that the tobacco flavored options are on the low and is reducing significantly.

There are vape shops throughout the US that allow you to taste and test it for yourself. You are always given the option to buy online and with coupon codes and holiday sales, sales and conversions have never been better. It is a $3 Billion industry and is moving fast towards becoming a large international conglomerate soon.