How To Vape: A step-by-step guide.

With vaping becoming a more popular stop-smoking aid by the day we have compiled a detailed step-by-step guide of everything you need to know to get started.

Table of contents

1. What is vaping?
2. What is MTL (Mouth-to-lung) Vaping?
3. What is RDL (Restricted direct-lung) Vaping?
4. What is DTL (Direct-to-lung) Vaping?
5. What is Inhale Activation & Button Activation?
6. Coil Resistance 
7. Airflow - What does it mean and How does it affect your vaping experience? 
8. What does Nicotine Strength refer to?
9. What does priming a coil mean?
10. What does chain vaping mean?
11. Conclusion

What is vaping?

A picture of vape being inhaled from a mouth.

All vaping devices consist of a battery that powers the kit, a coil/atomiser that is used to heat the e-liquid into vapour & a pod or tank, this is a container that will always have a maximum of 2ml in capacity (TPD requirements) and is what contains the juice/e-liquid.

E-liquids are liquids that consist of flavouring, PG, VG & nicotine. There are also three different styles of vaping, that we will get into just below.

Let's unravel this together.

What is MTL (Mouth-to-lung) Vaping?

A picture of different disposables.

MTL Vaping is often the best way for beginners to get started as it resembles the sensation of smoking a cigarette. When you pull on the vape, the vapour is drawn into the mouth where it sits until you inhale it down to the lungs and then exhale - the same as you would a cig.

Mouth-to-lung kits also operate at a lower wattage than their DTL counterpart & produce less vapour.

Luckily for a beginner, there are many different options for the type of kits you can go for - disposables, pod/pen kits aswell as box kits.

Disposables are typically aimed at beginners as they tend to come in higher nicotine strengths to simplify the stop-smoking process, they also are straightforward to use as you only have to take them out of their packaging and take a puff.

Pod/pen kits are then what we consider as the next level up from single-use bars but more affordable with more options of flavours and nicotine strengths as these types of kits are refillable.

Box kits are then the next upgrade, these tend to have larger batteries and more customisation features for the more advanced MTL vaper who wants to tailor their experience even further.

What type of e-liquid can I use in my MTL kit?

A picture of e-liquids suitable for MTL kits

MTL kits should be paired with 50/50 freebase e-liquids or nicotine salt e-liquids.

As MTL kits heat e-liquids at a lower wattage, the consistency (PG/VG) ratio of a high VG e-liquid won’t heat up to the temperature required to turn the juice into vapour which will in turn cause leakage to occur.

We have a wide range of 50/50 E-liquids here at Vape Superstore for you to choose from covering fruit flavours, tobaccos and menthols, available in 10ml, 50mls & 100mls

What is RDL (Restricted direct-lung) Vaping?

a picture of rdtl kits

RDL vaping is the middle ground of MTL vaping & DTL vaping. Whilst the draw may feel like an airier MTL kit, the flavour that comes with as well as the cloud is more similar to direct-to-lung vaping.

The vapour is inhaled through the mouth as well as being inhaled directly into the lungs. The main difference between RDL and the reason why it falls in the middle ground is MTL kits have a more restricted draw whereas DTL kits have a higher wattage level.

There isn't a range of RDL kits, the RDL experience is typically delivered through MTL kits that take an RDL coil and have an adjustable airflow.

Nowadays many mouth-to-lung kits are popping up on the market that include an MTL coil and RDL coil as the standard. This goes for pod/pen kits & box kits, excluding disposables that have a higher than 1.0ohm coil built-in generally.

What type of e-liquid can I use with an RDL coil?

a picture of rdtl coils

When using an RDL coil inside an MTL kit, you should still use the same e-liquid as you would in your MTL kit - nic salts or 50/50 freebase nicotine.

An RDL coil is still vaped at a lower wattage than what would be needed to be compatible with High VG juices.

What is DTL (Direct-to-lung) Vaping?

a picture of dl kits

Direct-to-lung vaping is often considered by a vaper who has some experience in the field as DTL kits tend to have a lot more features to adjust and are vaped at higher wattages which for a beginner can sometimes be too powerful.

A DTL-type inhale is when you take the vapour straight into the lungs in contrast to MTL kits where it's taken through a mouth inhale first. The vapour cloud with DTL kits is thicker, denser & some may say more flavoursome.

Similar to MTL kits, DTL kits also have a wide array of options to choose from - including pen/pod kits and box kits. A DTL pen kit is a great option to get started as typically pen kits have a fixed output that is dependent on the inputted coil resistance - which means it’s easier to operate but still provides the experience of a DTL kit.

Pod kits are smaller in size than box kits for example which is great for convenience and portability, they still pack a punch and have a great battery life just slightly less than bigger models tend to have. Box kits on the other hand are bigger, more powerful & often contain more exciting features and efficiency in terms of overall performance.

What type of e-liquid can I use in my DTL kit?

a picture of high vg juices

DTL kits are to be paired with High VG juice solely whether that be 60VG/40PG or 70VG/30PG, both will work fine.

DTL kits heat liquid at high wattages so require a thicker liquid consistency. High PG liquids won't work in a DTL kit as they are too thin and will cause leakage.

Here at Vape Superstore, we have a wide array of High VG juices suited for DTL vaping.

What is Inhale Activation & Button Activation?

a picture of inhale activated pens

Inhale activation is becoming extremely popular as it allows users to vape from their devices without having to press or fiddle with any buttons. Single-use bars were the first to introduce this feature, which paved the way for pen/pod kits to introduce this popular activation feature.

Users enjoy this due to its convenience and ability to hold their pen just like a cigarette. We have compiled a list of the best inhale-activated kits for 2024 that can be found here.

Button activation on the other hand is activated through a hold down of a button, some users tend to prefer this option as it eliminates the delay there can sometimes be with inhale activation. With button activation, you can also typically lock the feature which prevents the kit from auto-firing in your pocket/bag.

Coil Resistance

a picture of a coil.

Understandably for those just stepping into the vaping world, coil resistance is often a part of vaping that can sometimes be seen as overwhelming or confusing.

To simplify matters, any coil that has a higher resistance than 1.0Ω is an MTL coil, 0.9Ω to 0.5Ω is deemed as RDL and lastly, anything less than 0.5Ω is a DTL coil.

The lower the resistance of the coil the more wattage it can withstand whereas the higher the resistance the less current it can take.

Typically lower resistance coils should be paired with High VG juice, however, RDL coils, if stated, are to be paired with 50/50 freebase e-liquids or nicotine salts as they mainly are included within MTL kits, the same stands for higher resistance coils.


Lower resistance coils

picture of low resistance coils
  • A lot smoother inhale
  • More heat
  • Bigger clouds
  • Requires devices with a large battery life to prevent excessive draining of battery due to the high wattage required
  • E-liquid levels will drain quicker

Higher resistance coils

picture of high resistance coils
  • Provide a greater throat hit
  • Less wattage required
  • Less cloud produced
  • Battery lasts longer
  • E-liquids last longer

Airflow - What does it mean and How does it affect your vaping experience?

picture of airflow control

Airflow refers to the amount of air that is inhaled when taking a puff from a vaping device. Nowadays a lot of the kits that are being sold have an adjustable airflow control where the customer can tailor the experience manually with a simple slide.

Airflow on a kit affects many factors, including vapour production, temperature control & also flavour.

Vapour production

a picture of a cloud

When the airflow is adjusted it can change the vaping experience quite significantly.

Opening the airflow up makes for a cooler vape but decreases the level of flavour whilst closing the airflow leads to a thicker cloud & greater flavour.

Temperature control

a picture of a flame and ice symbol

Tweaking the airflow on your kit can also affect the temperature of your vape.

The more open your airflow is the cooler the vapour will be whilst the more you close the airflow control the more warmer the vapour will be.


a picture of fruits

The production is greatly influenced by tailoring the airflow control.

When you have the airflow open it tends to reduce the level of flavour.

Closing off the airflow on the other hand allows for considerable flavour.

What does Nicotine Strength refer to?

a picture of cigarettes

Nicotine strength refers to the nicotine content contained within an e-liquid bottle. Your chosen e-liquid strength will depend on the amount of cigarettes you were smoking daily before making the transition over to vaping.

Let's break it down a little more for clarity.

  • 0mg - No cigarettes or odd one now and then/hobby vapers who like big clouds.
  • 3mg - 5 cigarettes a day.
  • 5/6mg - 10 cigarettes a day.
  • 10mg/12mg- 20 cigarettes a day.
  • 18mg - 20+ cigarettes a day.
    We have a detailed guide on choosing the correct nicotine strength that provides a deeper explanation here.

What does priming a coil mean?

picture of pod and clock

Priming a coil refers to the time allowed before vaping from a brand-new coil/pod. With new coils, you should add some liquid drops to the exposed wicking material and then insert the coil into a pod/tank with liquid and allow it to sit for around ten minutes.

With pods that have built-in coils, you will just need to add liquid into the pod and follow the second step only as access to the coil won't be possible.

If this step isn't carried out it can cause the coil to burn out instantly, once a coil burns out you won’t be able to reuse it and will need to swap it out for a new coil.

What does chain vaping mean?

picture of vape being blown out

Chain vaping refers to the act of taking several puffs from a vape pen without any breaks in between. This practice can at times cause issues such as leaking as the coil doesn't have enough time to heat the liquid to vapour resulting in juice coming out of the airflow holes.

It can also cause the battery to drain faster and the coil to burn out quicker, overall chain vaping is not recommended.

Studies have also shown that chain vaping can increase the possibility of nicotine overdosing. Excessive puffs on an e-cigarette can cause the user to exceed the recommended nicotine content they require.

Dehydration is also a worry for vaping in general, a good fluid intake is often recommended, chain vaping excessively could cause dehydration greater if not taken into consideration whilst vaping.

How to prevent chain-vaping

  • Take frequent breaks.
  • Ensure you are on the correct nicotine strength.
  • Keep your vape out of sight at your workstation/desk.


We have now reached the end of our extensive guide on how to vape. We hope you have left this page with a better understanding of the basic principles of vaping. Now you’re equipped with the extensive knowledge required why not check out our range of first-time switcher kits? Put down the cigarette & step into the world of vaping.


If you have any more questions, do not hesitate to get in touch with us via a range of channels found on our Contact Us page.