What Are Nicotine Salts — and How They Can Benefit You?

Nicotine Salt Juice 101: What Are They? How Do You Use Them?

Updated: 2/8/18

Not everyone who vapes does it in order to get nicotine into their system. Some people vape without any nicotine in their e-juice at all. But for many vapers, the nicotine fix that e-cigarettes and e-juices provide is their reason for vaping. They look forward to taking a drag from their e-cigarette and getting access to the nicotine in their e-juice.

If you are one of these people, you have probably spent time experimenting with different nicotine levels to find what works best for you. It can take some time and some tinkering around, but if you’re patient, you can find the best nicotine level for your situation and then adjust it accordingly, based on whether or not you want to scale back on nicotine over time.

But now, there are actually different kinds of nicotine that are being included in e-juices, which means you have a decision to make before buying e-juices with nicotine in them. For the most part, many vaping manufacturers have relied on freebase nicotine in the past to create their e-juices. Freebase nicotine is the most commonly used form of nicotine in the vaping industry.

But over the last couple years, nicotine salts have also started to carve out a niche in the industry. Aspen Valley Vapes just started carrying a line of e-juices that contain nicotine salts, and the thought is that there are probably going to be more e-juices that contain nicotine salts hitting the market soon. Vapers are starting to become more comfortable with the idea of using products that contain nicotine salts, and that could very well lead to a spike in popularity.

The question now is: What are nicotine salts, and how could they potentially benefit you? Let’s take a closer look at what they are and why they are starting to make so much noise among vapers…

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How Nicotine Salt Is Used in E-Juices

Freebase nicotine is created when tobacco and vaping companies take nicotine and remove protons from it. In order to do this, they take a base like ammonia and add it to nicotine to strip away all of the protons that exist in it. The ammonia that is used also separates the nicotine from the salts that are present to create a freebase form of nicotine that is then inserted into products.

Nicotine salts operate much differently than this. These salts actually form naturally in leaf tobacco and are considered to be a more stable form of nicotine than the freebase form. Although it has taken quite a bit of research to perfect the methodology behind taking nicotine salts and using them in vaping products, companies like PAX Labs, Inc. have perfected it and figured out a way to do it.

While many companies still opt to use freebase nicotine in their vaping products, nicotine salts have shown to provide vapers with a much different experience overall.

Why Nicotine Salt Might Be Beneficial

As we just mentioned, it took a lot of research for companies to figure out how to incorporate nicotine salts into vaping products. And it’s going to take even more research to figure out just how beneficial they can be in the long run. But companies that incorporate nicotine salts into their products have pointed out a number of potential benefits.

For starters, nicotine salts seem to provide vapers with better nicotine blood absorption, which means they will receive a nicotine fix more quickly when they vape with an e-juice that contains nicotine salts in it as opposed to freebase nicotine. Because nicotine salts are in their natural state, the body appears to have an easier time absorbing them right away and sustaining a longer nicotine fix.

This is a solution to a problem that many former smokers have when they start vaping. It takes them longer than they’re used to feel the effects of nicotine when they vape. As a result, many former smokers end up going back to smoking because they don’t get the same feeling when they vape as they do when they smoke.

Some new vapers also complain that vaping doesn’t provide them with the throat hits they are used to. But that won’t be a problem with e-juices that contain nicotine salts. Nicotine salts have been shown to provide strong throat hits that are similar to the feeling you might get when smoking a regular cigarette.

Companies continue to try and tinker with nicotine salt formulas to get them just right. But there are some signs that show vaping with nicotine salts might provide some people with better vaping experiences than vaping with freebase nicotine.

How to Vape With Nicotine Salt

Vaping with an e-juice that contains nicotine salt is very different than vaping with an e-juice that contains freebase nicotine. At Aspen Valley Vapes, we do not recommend people use our nicotine salt e-juices with sub ohm devices. Rather, we tell people to use low powered devices like the Wismec MyJet, Eleaf iCare, Von Erl, or Wismec MyMini with nicotine salt e-juices.

This is mostly because nicotine salt e-juices have very high nicotine levels in them. The SALT e-juices by CRFT, for example, have 40mg per ml. But when you use a device that operates at a low wattage, you won’t necessarily feel like you’re using an e-juice with a high nicotine level, even though it will deliver a strong nicotine buzz to you.

We also tell people that they probably won’t have to vape as much as they normally do when using e-juices that contain nicotine salt. You will likely find that you vape much less but still get your nicotine fix throughout the day when you go with nicotine salts. This is another perceived advantage of using nicotine salt e-juices over e-juices containing freebase nicotine.

Update 2/8/18

Since we originally posted this article, nicotine salt juices have exploded in popularity, so we wanted to make a few updates 🙂 There are a lot of new companies now that are producing their regular e-liquid flavors with nicotine salts, even in lower milligrams like 3mg, 6mg, 12mg, and even higher. The company Fresh Pressed recently released a new line of three flavors all available in the standard 3mg, 6mg, 12mg, and 18mg, but these contain nicotine salt instead of standard nicotine. We also carry a line called ALTERNATIV which uses nicotine salt in lower milligram options. Will you notice a difference when vaping them compared to your other favorite vape juice? You might notice a little bit smoother of a vape, but the taste of the juice will not change noticeably when switching between the two types of nicotine, the main thing that changes is how quickly the nicotine is absorbed into your bloodstream.

Where to Find E-Juices With Nicotine Salt in Them

Are you interested in trying out an e-juice that contains nicotine salt? It could very well change the way you look at vaping and give you the experience you have been looking for. Aspen Valley Vapes carries several different kinds of nicotine salt e-juices from companies like CRFT and Mr Salt E. We’ve also recently added the Naked 100 Nicotine Salt line (NKD 100) and VGOD’s new salt line. We have tested over 30 saltnic lines, but we’re all vapers here, so we can tell when the quality isn’t too good. A lot of companies are trying to capitalize on the “salt rush” right now and we make sure to only pick up lines that we absolutely love ourselves. We’re always on the lookout for new lines to pick up, so if you have any suggestions, please feel free to reach out to us!

So what are you waiting for? Try one today or contact us for more information on how nicotine salt e-juices can change your perception of vaping altogether.

13 thoughts on “What Are Nicotine Salts — and How They Can Benefit You?

  1. Agrees W Chemist says:

    Yeah, I’m pretty sure that removing protons from an atom produces different elements. You can’t just strip protons from one compound to produce another similar compound – you would get different elements altogether. I can trust nothing stated here.

  2. Joe says:


    Hey everyone, please ignore the previous two comments, they are just some kids who think they know chemistry. A proton in space is a hydrogen ion, it’s combination with other atoms and molecules makes for new compounds, not elements, and is a super common reaction in both nature and industry. The chemistry language in this article is accurate.

    • Organic Chem 101 says:

      You’re right in that the above comment mistakes atomic protons with the hydrogen atoms that are covelantly bonded to other organic compounds–such as the nitrogenous ring found in nicotine.

      The article is not accurate, however. to say “they take a base like ammonia and add it to nicotine to strip away all of the protons that exist in it. ” demonstrates a fundamental misunderstanding of basic acid-base reactions within organic chemistry. No solvent, ammonia or otherwise, could ever “strip away all of the protons that exist from it”. Ammonia as a base simply removes the covalent bonds of chemically reactive hydrogens to organic structures (such as nicotanimide). Acid-base interactions are proton transfers. Proton transfers are simply the movement of the electrons from the bonds between hydrogens and an organic structure, thereby destroying those bonds and releasing positively charged hydrogen ions(H+), which are simply the hydrogens that have lost their electron buddy.


      The hydrogen atom is only 1 proton and 1 electron. You should now see clearly why removing an electron from a hydrogen leaves it with only 1 positively charged proton.

      Other elements have more protons within their nucleophilic core together with neutrons, with electrons occupying ‘probability clouds’ that surround the positive center. In fact, this is one of the fundamental organizations of the Periodic table. With each additional element another proton is gained. (Within the elemental core, not through hydrogen bonds!)

      If we had the magical power to do what the article suggests, right now we could be turning everything into gold by simply “removing” 3 protons from the atomic centers of lead(Pb) or just 1 proton away from the mercury metal in thermometers.

      Early alchemists and chemists attempted to gain the Midas touch and failed. We have better science now.

      Also the article’s explanation of salts residues and their significance to organic chemistry is highly misrepresentative and far to ambigious to be considered accurate by any measure. Go read up on “salts” in organic chemistry, that’s all you need to know a marketing scheme from good scientific research.
      One look at their “graphical analysis” demonstrates the hilarious attempt of vape enthusiasts to purport themselves to having scientific knowledge or a clue about the process of scientific research.

      I’m a chemist, but that should make little difference to the verisimilitude of my explanations, as they are based on objectively based evidence and not on an appeal to scientific authority. Scientists don’t support their claims with a listing of academic credentials, but rather with testing, reason, logic, and objectively obtained evidence. These principles are the very gears that drive forward scientific research, and so too are the gears that drive US forward as humanity. Science pushes us forward like a dim candle in the darkness.

  3. Scott says:

    Back to chemistry…………..it’s the way the explanation is written. Protonated nicotine contains one available hydrogen atom attached to one of the nitrogen atoms in the nicotine molecule which can be removed by a strong base such as ammonia or more correctly, Ammonium Hydroxide (ammonia in water). This does not strip all the hydrogen atoms of the molecule, just the one inducing a positive charge on one of the nitrogens. The effect of removing this proton (creating the free-base) is that the molecule is no longer charged and becomes electrically neutral and thus not terribly water soluble.

  4. C J says:

    One company that i Vaped quite a bit started using trunic salts, and did not know this til after I purchased a bottle, once I am done with this bottle I am no longer buying it as long as they keep using it, it is a 3mg which I always use and the flavor is not as strong and it feels like I am vaping a 0 nic freebase nicotine. The shop I purchased it from had no idea til they seen it on the bottle, people have complained about it and said they are no longer purchasing it either

    • Al says:

      I don’t know about that flavor you say, but I like to DIY my liquids and I ordered SAGE Nicotine salts and I received it today. I’ve been vaping for a few days without nicotine because I run out of it, and today I added the nicotine to my already mixed liquid and I felt a very nice throat hit and feeling from it. I don’t think the salt is the problem, but maybe that specific flavor producer made maths wrong and are adding less nicotine than before.

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