As any cigarette smoker will testify, kicking a nicotine addiction is really difficult and, for some, nigh on impossible. Medicinal nicotine patches certainly help quell the urge but they fail to fulfil the other two habitual ‘qualities’ of smoking: nicotine grip in the throat and the sight of smoke being exhaled. That’s where the vaporiser or e-cigarette comes in. This clever little battery-powered device is not only able to deliver a hit of nicotine, but the vapour it produces feels and looks like real tobacco smoke.
Vaping is now one of the fastest growing industries on the planet. According to some sources, as many as 3.6 million people in the UK use vaporisers on a regular basis and this is only likely to increase as more cigarette and roll-up smokers turn their backs on tobacco and embrace the less dangerous (and less smelly) activity of vaping.
One company at the vanguard of this burgeoning industry is V2CigsUK, a UK company that launched one of the very first pod-based vaporisers in Britain. V2CigsUK is also the UK distributor and representative for a cool new vape brand called RipTide which recently launched a unique type of pod-based vaporiser called the RipStick.
The RipStick concept
Unlike the majority of vaporisers that require regular filling with oily and messy e-liquid that gets all over your fingers, RipTide’s RipStick is a fuss-free pod-based system that allows you to swap flavours and nicotine strength by simply removing one pod and fitting another.
RipStick’s e-liquid (which includes a combination of Vegetable Glycerin and Propylene Glycol) is free from Benzoic acid, the slightly dodgy sounding ingredient used in modern nicotine salts to create the cherished throat hit. Instead, it uses a tobacco-free synthetic nicotine called NicTech that provides higher satisfaction without it feeling like you’re having your throat ripped to threads. The result is a smoother, more satisfying puff.
The RipTide RipStick in detail
The RipStick is comprised of two main parts: the chassis containing the battery and the magnetic e-liquid pod that encompasses both the atomiser (the part that transforms the e-liquid into a mist) and the mouthpiece. Some vaporisers are fist sized and look like spare parts from a nuclear reactor but not this sleek little number. Measuring just 10cm in length, 2.2cm in width and a measly 1cm in depth, the RipStick is the perfect size for even the tightest of pockets. Its beautifully tapered slim metal body, meanwhile, feels smooth and comfortable in the hand and the rounded mouthpiece is perfectly contoured for lips.
The RipStick’s 500mAh battery provides a whole day’s vaping but you can easily top it up using a computer, a car charger or any portable USB charger. Simply plug the provided USB into the base of the unit and it’ll be ready to use after about 45 minutes and much quicker if just going for a top up. Rather handily, a small LED-lit wispy smoke logo provides visual information about the battery status so you’re not caught short.
To change a pod whether it’s finished or not, simply pull it away from the magnet and drop in a new one. This type of system is brilliant for those (indeed most of us) who like to change e-liquid flavours on a regular basis. Unlike some other vaporisers, you don’t have to finish puffing one flavour before filling the chamber with a different one.
Using the RipTide RipStick
RipTide has got the draw resistance on this vape stick dialled to a T: it’s not so stiff that you need to pucker your cheeks and not too loose to make it feel like you’re breathing air. It’s just right. The aforementioned NicTech makes a big difference too because some e-liquids can be really harsh on the throat. Not so in this case – from the very first the draw to the last, it provides a consistently smooth hit that produces just the right level of all-important grip.
Given that the RipStick is a fraction the size of a complicated sub-OHM model with buttons to adjust ohms and voltages, it produces surprisingly huge plumes of vapour – far more than its diminutive size would ever suggest. This makes it a great backup model for the cloud chaser’s pocket and a top model for blowing vape rings.
Another cool facet that makes the RipStick so easy to use is that it features automatic draw control. Hence, unlike other vaporisers which require you to press a button to activate the atomiser (a hassle especially if you can’t feel the button properly with your thumb), on the RipStick you just put your lips to the mouthpiece and suck. Boom, plume. Simple, effective.
RipTide RipStick Pods
RipStick pods come in six tantalising flavours – Bright Tobacco Leaf, Mint, Blue Raspberry, Mango, Tropical and Berry Crunch – and two nicotine strengths. If you currently smoke mild cigarettes and prefer a gentle hit on the throat, consider the 12mg option. But if you currently smoke strong cigarettes or would prefer something that grips like a Lucky Strike, go for the 20mg pack. To be honest, the pods themselves are only £3.99 a hit so it might be worth some experimentation. You can safely expect a single pod to last a few days and even longer if you’re a casual smoker moving over to the land of vape.
Where to buy RipTide's RipStick
The RipTide RipStick is available as a single unit (priced £16.99) or as a Starter Kit with a pod of your choice (£19.99). Both packs and the full range of single pods are available to purchase direct from V2CigsUK and RipTide.