What Is An Electronic Cigarette?

What Is An Electronic Cigarette?

Let me start by saying I LOVE smoking. I love the entire experience, the rituals, the way it makes my body feel. If it weren’t for vanity and the serious health issues that come along with being a smoker, I would continue the habit. But after 11 years of smoking, the cons officially outweigh the pros and I’ve ventured onto a journey to find an alternative. Electronic cigarettes offer me a similar experience, new and old rituals and continue to provide my body with some of the same feelings. Best of all, the pros far outweigh the cons.

So, What Is An Electronic Cigarette?

It’s a fake smoke… duh! An electronic cigarette is a battery-operated device that vaporizes liquid nicotine. Its purpose? To simulate the act of smoking a real cigarette (or at least that’s what our hope is), minus all of the nasty side-effects. It is tar-free, smoke-free, nasty scent-free, and annoying “non-smokers coughing at you, pretending they’re dying” free. Most important, e-cigarettes have helped me replace my smoking habit by providing a much healthier alternative.

Electronic cigarettes are also known as e-cigarettes, e-cigs, smokeless cigarettes, personal vaporizers and “hey, what the hell is that?” For more info to help you sound like you know what you’re vaping, check out these e-cig terms.

No Tar, No Toxins, No Tobacco

Cigarettes contain over 4000 nasty chemicals, many of which have the potential to cause lung cancer. Electronic cigarettes provide you with your nicotine fix MINUS the 40 known carcinogens (cancer-causing agents) that come with burning tobacco. You also get to continue to indulge in your oral and hand-to-mouth fixations… so put down the cookie.

No Nasty Smell

Cigarettes don’t have the best rep for smelling good. Most non-smokers, and even some smokers, hate the scent. Since cigarettes emit burning tobacco, the smell permeates the space you’re in and sticks to clothing, hair and furniture… they even stain walls. Electronic cigarettes do no emit the same scent. In fact, you often won’t smell anything from an e-cig. If you do, it’s usually a light, pleasant scent that dissipates quickly.

No Secondhand Smoke

The vapor you blow out after taking a drag off of an electronic cigarette is water-based and dissipates quickly, so secondhand smoke concerns are a thing of the past!

No Ash, No Fire

One of the best perks to electronic cigarettes is the complete lack of ash. There are no flames involved in vaping (the act of smoking an e-cig), so there is no ash. Nothing is “on-fire,” so Narcoleptics around the world can snore in safety.

Addictive and Non-addictive Options

With electronic cigarettes, you have the option of vaping different levels of nicotine, including zero percent! That means if you want to kick your actual physical addiction while maintaining your oral fixation, you can.

E-Cigarettes Are Allowed In Most Places

Use Anytime, Anywhere

That’s right – you can vape indoors! Bars, restaurants, libraries (who the hell goes to those these days??)… anywhere you CAN’T smoke, you CAN vape! However, some states are debating instilling similar smoking laws on vaping, so be sure to stay informed regarding the laws in your area.

Save Money

This one is debatable due to some disposable electronic cigarettes that cost more than a pack of smokes and won’t even last me a day. However, the majority of e-cigs cost FAR LESS than real cigarettes. I’ve cut my smoking expense in half since making the switch!


There is a huge variety of e-cig styles and flavors. I’ve actually enjoyed trying new options far more with e-cigs than I ever did with real ones. In fact, for 10 years I was a Camel Light smoker and finally switched to menthol in my last year… not much change there, huh? Since switching to e-cigs, I’ve enjoyed a huge variety of flavors, from Watermelon to Irish Cream (what?!). You can also vape off of a variety of devices, from ones that look like real cigarettes, to pen-like devices, pipes, cigars and weird tank thingies… the options are vast and quite interesting.

Hobby vs. Habit

I’ve found that vaping has become more of a hobby and real cigarettes were definitely a habit. I make conscious decisions around what I choose to vape and the style of device I choose to vape off of. Cigarettes were mindless – a necessity in my daily life. Though I am still addicted to nicotine (only because I have chosen not to reduce the nicotine level I vape), the act of maintaining my addiction has become far more enjoyable and interesting.


We’ve now answered the question, “What is an electronic cigarette?” and reviewed some basic facts about vaping. To quickly summarize; they cost less, are more socially acceptable, still support the smoker’s nicotine addiction and oral fixation, and are all-around a much healthier and far more appealing alternative to smoking!

What made you ask the question, “What is an electronic cigarette?” Did you notice one at a gas station or see a buddy vaping? Leave your answer in the comment form below…


Howdy, I'm the blogger behind The Real Cig. After 11 years of smoking, I quit by switching to electronic cigarettes! My blog is meant to help other smokers become vapors by finding an electronic cigarette that can replace the real thing. Check out my story →

(3) Comments

  1. One of my friends brought one to a party and I tried it. It was MUCH bigger than the real thing lol but I liked it! I’m thinking about getting one. What kind do you recommend?

    • The NJOY brand was the first I invested in as I could find it at a Chevron. Most of the gas station brands are not worth trying, but NJOYs are pretty good. If you like what you try, I would move onto a kit from (here’s my affiliate link) Premium Vapes – this is my brand of choice right now. I use the Menthol 11mg and LOVE them!

  2. Pingback: How Does An Electronic Cigarette Work? - The Real Cig

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