We tried vaping so you don’t have to

Ellie Rogers and Oliver Moore step into the smoke-filled world of electronic cigarettes

Ellie Rogers and Oliver Moore step into the smoke-filled world of electronic cigarettes

Vaping subculture took off at an alarming rate in 2015, taking the world by storm and changing the hearts and minds of the likes of DiCaprio, Miley and that guy on Tinder who keeps telling you about beard oil.

In our rebellious teen years, we both briefly smoked non-electronic cigarettes. Since then, we have given up on any semblance of edginess and retreated to our natural roles as absolute squares.

So we might have already been at a disadvantage in the world of steamed nicotine.

In our attempt to feel risqué without the risk, we discovered an entire underworld of strange, incredibly expensive e-cigarettes. A typical vaping setup comprises of all sorts of complex coils, atomisers, e-liquid, batteries and drip tips.

We briefly explored this, before wisely opting for a $10 City Convenience e-cig without nicotine, available in inspiring flavours ‘grape’ and ‘tobacco’.

With this in mind, here is our review:

Tobacco flavor could most accurately be described as ‘mildly unpleasant’. Grape, on the other hand, was like cough medicine two hours after you’ve consumed it. Admittedly, these are not top of the line products; a Google search revealed alternative flavours, ranging from pumpkin to energy drink, taste considerably superior. Somehow, we doubt it.

Overall, we found the vaping experience entirely uninteresting. E-cigerettes have none of the advantage of actual cigerettes: making you feel cooler, or giving you an opportunity to talk to girls at parties. Instead, we inhaled little to no flavor, whilst looking absolutely ridiculous, and feeling that somehow, somewhere, we were being mocked.

Clearly, vaping was a mystery beyond our tastebuds. So we decided to seek out answers.

The obvious place to start? Reddit board /r/vaping.

We asked a few willing participants what drew them to vaping. We expected the origin story for a new Marvel villain, but once we waded past the memes and high school chemistry, we found a group of smokers who were trying to quit, and just wanted support whilst doing so.

Vaping, it seemed, was just “the best method of harm reduction when it comes to using nicotine.” The only critique that arose was the community’s “self-righteous attitude” towards smokers, especially considering most vapers smoked prior to changing their nicotine intake method.

This places them closer to Paleo dieters on the Annoying Scale.


Ollie: 2/10 stars, have absolutely no desire or interest in ever vaping again, but would definitely recommend to a friend for the sole purpose of later laughing at them.

Ellie: To be honest I don’t feel very positive about it, mostly a bit ill. 3/10 would not vape again.


For those interested in improving the vape experience by adding a little kick, unfortunately the sale and importation of nicotine oil is illegal in NSW. For now, your options are moving to Melbourne like you’ve always said you would, or becoming part of an underground crime syndicate.