Initially, electronic cigarettes were created by a Chinese scientist to help people quit–or find an alternative to–smoking. These devices were used to heat a special liquid containing flavor and nicotine up to its boiling point–a process known as vaporization. This was done to give smokers a sensation similar to smoking a cigarette.
The process of vaping does not involve combustion, and it is therefore considered by many to be a healthier alternative to traditional cigarettes. Many large tobacco companies have adapted and launched their own eCigs. One example is Philip Morris’ launch of the iQOS a few years back. A few years after the invention of tobacco eCigs, a few innovators had the idea that if they are able to work with nicotine–they could accommodate other substances as well, such as medicinal herbs and extracts.
This birthed a new category of eCigs called vaporizers. Vaporizers are used to consume all forms of THC such as dry herb or extracts. A typical vaporizer will have a power source and a small oven that can heat up a substance to a critical vaporizing temperature, releasing the THC in the form of vapor. The vapor is inhaled, delivering the THC to the user.
Like any other technology in its initial stages, vaporizers started off simple. They soon added new features, improved efficiency, and expanded into multiple sub-categories of vaporizers.
This new technology was quickly adopted by medical and recreational weed users who wanted to modernize their consumption ritual. One of the main reasons for the growing popularity of vaporizers is the recent legalization of marijuana in many US states, making all forms of THC more accessible.
e-Liquid & Vape Juice
These vaporizers are used to vape tobacco in the form of vape juice. This category consists of a few smaller categories, the main two are eCigs and Vape Mods.
Both work in the same way–by heating up a liquid (a mixture of PG/VG/Nicotine/Flavors) to a boiling temperature. The resulting vapor is then inhaled to enjoy the given substance’s benefits. This category started out with simple eCigs and later evolved into the more powerful, robust vape mods.
Generally, if you are trying to quit smoking or looking for an alternative this category is what you should go for.
Weed & Dry Herb
Weed vaporizers come in two versions–Portable and Desktop. This category started with Desktops which were large and required an electrical plug-in. Recent technological advancements made batteries more efficient and allowed portables to dominate the market. Most modern day vapes are portables.
These devices generally contain a small oven, where you insert ground herb, such as medical weed. The oven heats up to the desired temperature, releasing potent THC and other cannabinoids from the herb in the form of vapor to be inhaled.
If you are looking to consume medical marijuana (as herb) and minimize health risks associated with traditional weed smoking, this category is for you.
THC Extracts & Concentrates
In recent years, marijuana legalization around the US made THC extracts (i.e., concentrates, wax, oil) more accessible. These extracts contain around 70 percent THC versus plant material’s 22 percent.
Extract vaporizers have a small heating coil where a drop of extract is placed and heated to the ideal vaping temperature–producing extremely potent vapor. Extracts are ideal to use with vaporizers as they are super-concentrated, meaning you only need a little dab in order to get a sufficient amount of THC.
These extracts are more convenient to vape than dry herb, and require less power. A typical extract vaporizer looks like a small pen, is simple to transport, and provides fuss-free refills and heat-ups.
If you are looking for a stealthy, way to consume THC extracts–this is it.