Propylene Glycol vs. Vegetable Glycerin: A guide for vapers and vaping enthusiasts

The world of vaping offers a vast array of options, from devices to e-liquids. Among the various components of e-liquids, two stand out due to their significance: Propylene Glycol (PG) and Vegetable Glycerin (VG). These two ingredients play crucial roles in the vaping experience, influencing flavour, throat hit, and vapour production. Understanding the differences between PG and VG can help vapers make informed choices about their e-liquids. In this guide, we'll delve into the characteristics of both substances, their pros and cons, and how they impact your vaping experience.  

What is Propylene Glycol (PG)?

Propylene Glycol is a synthetic organic compound used in various industries, including food, cosmetics, and pharmaceuticals. In the vaping world, PG is known for its ability to carry flavour well, providing a strong throat hit similar to traditional cigarettes. This quality makes it a popular choice for those transitioning from smoking to vaping. 

Characteristics of PG 

  • Flavour Carrier: PG is excellent at carrying flavours, ensuring that the taste of the e-liquid is prominent and clear. 
  • Throat Hit: PG provides a strong throat hit, which can be particularly satisfying for former smokers. 
  • Thin Consistency: PG has a low viscosity, making it easy to vaporise and less likely to gunk up your vape coils. 

Pros and Cons of PG 


  • Enhanced flavour delivery. 
  • Strong throat hit. 
  • Easy to vaporise due to its thin consistency. 


  • Some individuals may experience sensitivity or allergic reactions to PG. 
  • The strong throat hit can be harsh for some vapers.  

What is Vegetable Glycerin (VG)? 

Vegetable Glycerin is a natural compound derived from plant oils, commonly used in food and pharmaceutical products. VG is known for producing thick, dense vapour clouds and providing a smoother vaping experience. It's often preferred by those who enjoy cloud chasing or who have sensitivity to PG. 

Characteristics of VG 

  • Vapour Production: VG is known for its ability to produce large, dense clouds of vapour. 

  • Smooth Throat Hit: VG provides a smoother throat hit, making it more comfortable for many vapers. 

  • Thick Consistency: VG has a higher viscosity, which can lead to more residue on vape coils and a slower wicking process. 

Pros and Cons of VG 


  • Produces large, satisfying vapour clouds. 
  • Provides a smooth, comfortable throat hit. 
  • Natural and hypoallergenic, making it suitable for most vapers. 


    • Thicker consistency can cause more build-up on coils, requiring more frequent cleaning. 
    • Can mute the intensity of flavours compared to PG. 

    Choosing the Right PG/VG Ratio 

    When selecting an e-liquid, the ratio of PG to VG is an important consideration. The ideal ratio depends on your vaping preferences and desired experience. Here are some common PG/VG ratios and their implications: 

    • High PG (70/30): This ratio is ideal for those who prioritise flavour and a strong throat hit. It is also suitable for smaller, mouth-to-lung (MTL) devices. 

    • Balanced (50/50): A 50/50 ratio offers a balance between flavour, throat hit, and vapour production. It’s a versatile option suitable for a wide range of devices and vaping styles. 

    • High VG (30/70 or higher): High VG ratios are preferred by those who enjoy large vapour clouds and a smooth throat hit. This ratio is commonly used in sub-ohm tanks and direct-to-lung (DTL) devices. 

    Health and Safety Considerations 

    Both PG and VG are generally recognised as safe for consumption by the FDA. However, it's important to consider potential sensitivities and individual preferences: 

    • PG Sensitivity: Some vapers may experience irritation or allergic reactions to PG, including sore throat, dry mouth, or rashes. If you suspect a sensitivity, opting for a higher VG ratio can alleviate these symptoms. 
    • VG and Device Compatibility: High VG e-liquids can be more viscous, leading to potential issues with wicking in certain devices. Ensuring your device is compatible with high VG e-liquids can prevent dry hits and maintain a consistent vaping experience. 

    As you explore the world of e-liquids and their PG/VG compositions, finding a reputable source for your vaping needs is essential. Tidal Vape, a UK-based vape business with over 20 stores nationwide and a comprehensive online shop, offers a wide selection of e-liquids in various PG/VG ratios. Whether you're a flavour enthusiast seeking a high PG blend or a cloud chaser looking for high VG options, Tidal Vape provides quality products to suit every preference. Their knowledgeable staff can assist you in selecting the right e-liquid, ensuring a satisfying and personalised vaping experience.   

    Common Myths about PG and VG

    There are several myths and misconceptions about PG and VG that can cause confusion for vapers. Let’s dispel some of the most common ones:  

    • Myth 1: PG is harmful and unsafe - PG is approved by the FDA for use in food and medications, and it is considered safe for inhalation in vaping. However, individuals with sensitivities should opt for lower PG ratios. 
    • Myth 2: VG produces better flavour than PG - VG is known for creating thicker vapour clouds, but it can sometimes mute the flavours compared to PG. A balanced PG/VG ratio often provides the best flavour and vapour production. 
    • Myth 3: High VG e-liquids are only for advanced vapers - While high VG e-liquids are popular among cloud chasers, they can be enjoyed by vapers of all levels, provided their devices are compatible with thicker liquids. 

    Mixing Your Own E-Liquids 

    For those who want a more customised vaping experience, mixing your own e-liquids can be a rewarding endeavour. Understanding the roles of PG and VG can help you create blends that suit your preferences perfectly. Here are some tips for DIY e-liquid mixing: 

    • Start with a Simple Base - Begin with a basic PG/VG mix. A 50/50 ratio is a good starting point for most vapers. 
    • Adjust to Taste - Experiment with different ratios to find what works best for you. If you prefer stronger flavours and a sharper throat hit, increase the PG content. For smoother hits and thicker vapour, increase the VG content. 
    • Use Quality Ingredients - Ensure that you use high-quality, food-grade PG and VG, and follow proper safety guidelines when mixing your e-liquids. 

    The Environmental Impact of PG and VG 

    Sustainability is a growing concern among consumers, and vapers are no exception. Both PG and VG have different environmental impacts: 

    • Propylene Glycol - As a synthetic compound, PG’s production involves petrochemicals, which have a higher environmental footprint. However, PG is biodegradable and poses minimal risk to the environment when used in small quantities. 
    • Vegetable Glycerin - VG is derived from plant oils, making it a more sustainable and renewable resource. Its production has a lower environmental impact compared to synthetic compounds. 

    Choosing e-liquids with sustainable and environmentally friendly ingredients can help reduce your carbon footprint and support a more eco-conscious lifestyle.  

    Understanding the differences between Propylene Glycol and Vegetable Glycerin is crucial for tailoring your vaping experience to your preferences. PG offers enhanced flavour and a strong throat hit, making it ideal for those transitioning from smoking. In contrast, VG provides smooth hits and thick vapour clouds, perfect for cloud chasers and those with sensitivities to PG. By choosing the right PG/VG ratio and sourcing your e-liquids from trusted places like Tidal Vape, you can enjoy a customised and enjoyable vaping journey. 

    Explore the diverse range of e-liquids available at Tidal Vape, the best vape shop in the UK and experiment with different ratios to find the perfect blend for your needs.  

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