Ultimate Vaping Glossary: Terms and Slang Explained

The growth of the vaping industry has led to its unique lexicon that continues to be expanded. If you’re new to vaping, you will likely get confused over some seemingly strange-sounding terms like cloud chasing, stealth vaping or vaper’s tongue.

Well, this glossary below looks at some common words in glossary form you’ll come across in vaping discussions.

ADV (All Day Vape)

A term used by vapers to describe their go-to juice, which they can vape all day or continuously.


The slang term used in the vaping community for ordinary cigarettes.


The amount of air pulled by a user in each drag. Airflow is a custom setting on many devices and massively affects the vaping experience.


A key electronic component (also referred to as the coil) in most vaping devices responsible for changing the e-liquid into vapour.


A type of vaping device (usually with a mouthpiece) with a special sensor to activate the heating element without pressing a button.

Box mod

A kind of mod that is housed in a box-shaped unit.


A small metal meshed piece found inside an atomizer.


A pre-filled, often disposable container unit which holds the vaping juice most commonly in pod systems.


The first-generation of vaping devices that look quite visually similar to a conventional cigarette.


This term refers to the vapour exhaled by someone which resembles a cloud.

Cloud chasing

The act of vapers or ‘cloud chasers’ attempting to achieve the largest vapour cloud.


 It is essentially the same thing as the atomiser.

Custom mod

A type of custom-built, artistic mod often made of household materials like plastic, metal and wood.


The vaping equivalent to the ‘drag’ in smoking, used to refer to the force needed to inhale vapour.


A technique where a vaper directly dips e-liquid into their coil. Combined with high wattage, such an approach offers an intense burst of vapour.

Drip shield

 An accessory often consisting of a round plastic or metal tube placed on the atomizer to prevent e-liquid leaking.

Dry burn

This occurs when the user fires their vaping device while the coils have little to no e-liquid. It might be done intentionally to clean it or remove residue.

Dry hit

This happens when you unintentionally inhale vapour with a harsh and burnt taste. You can usually prevent this effect by ‘priming’ when replacing your coils.

DTL (direct-to-lung)

DTL or DL is an inhaling technique similar to breathing, where you quickly draw the vapour into your lungs before exhaling.


(short for electronic cigarette) Any electronic device built specifically for vaping.


The fluid solution, typically consisting of flavouring, nicotine, propylene glycol and vegetable glycerin, used in vaping devices to generate vapour.


This effect occurs when too much juice reaches the atomiser.

Freebase nicotine

A kind of nicotine in vape juice and traditional cigarettes where the stimulant is turned from a salt to a base state to increase its potency.


Another term for e-liquid in vaping. 


This happens when you put too much e-liquid in a device’s tank, causing it to escape or leak through the airflow system.


The abbreviation for milligram, used to measure an e-liquid’s nicotine strength.

MTL (mouth-to-lung)

MTL or ML is a vaping style closely mimicking ordinary smoking where vapers linger the vapour into their mouth before transferring it to the lungs.

Mechanical mod (mech mod)

This is a special kind of mod used by advanced vapers that delivers battery power without regulating the current or having no circuit board.


A grid-like metal strip found in a coil, typically in sub-ohm vaping, differing from regular coils and built for greater heating.


Any type of unique vaping device with advanced user-modified components.


The open end often found in pod systems where users place their mouth to inhale vapour from their device.


A highly addictive organic compound most commonly found in tobacco plants which is used as one of the ingredients in e-liquids (but not all the time).

Nicotine salts (nic salts)

A type of nicotine used in e-liquids for heavy smokers to experience a quicker absorption of the substance and a smoother throat hit.


A term used to refer to vaping juice without nicotine.

Ohm (Ω)

This is a measurement for a coil’s resistance or how much electric current passes through it.

Pen style

This describes second-generation, cylindrical vaping devices that look like pens.

Pod system

A fourth-generation vaping device (also called a vape pod or pod vape) which tends to be basic, light, rectangular and contains a mouthpiece.

PG (propylene glycol)

A thin, odourless and tasteless fluid used as one of the main ingredients in e-liquids and which affects the ‘throat hit.’


The application of filling a new coil’s wicking material with e-liquid prior to use. This ensures the atomiser head is fully saturated and prevents it from burning or having a ‘dry hit.’


The degree measurement to which a conductor resists electric current through it, denoted in ohms (Ω).

Stealth vaping

The practice of vaping in a discreet or secret manner to draw attention that one is vaping. Such a technique works with specially-designed devices producing barely visible vapour.


A method of maturing e-liquid to improve its flavour intensity by exposing the juice to air for a specific period.

Starter kit

A basic package consisting of all the vaping essentials designed to work straight out of the box.

Sub-ohming/sub-ohm vaping

A practice whereby vapers utilise a vaping device with a coil resistance below 1Ω and a high-wattage battery to generate massive clouds.


The part of most vaping devices that holds the e-liquid in place.

Throat hit

The sensation felt when inhaling e-liquid into your throat (also called a ‘kick’).


A user of an e-cigarette or vaping device.

Vaper’s tongue

(Also called vaper’s fatigue) This effect refers to the dulling of taste primarily caused by excessive vaping or vaping the same juice for a long time.

VG (vegetable glycerin)

A thick, syrup-like substance that is one of the primary ingredients in vaping juices, responsible for the size of the vaping clouds.


A piece of cotton (but can even be tea fibre or rayon) in the coil of most vaping devices nowadays which absorbs the vaping juice.