It is still possible to find high quality e liquids made from real tobacco extracts. However, nowadays, more and more commercially-available “tobacco e liquids” contain food flavourings, rather than tobacco extracts.
Mixing your own tobacco e liquids from tobacco extracts can be an authentic, cost-effective and fun way vape real tobacco flavours.
Tobacco extracts: tinctures and flavour concentrates
You probably don’t want to spend several days making your own tobacco extracts from real tobacco. Instead, the easiest way to make your own DIY tobacco e liquid is to get hold of some pre-made tobacco extracts.
There are two main types of tobacco extract that you should consider before making your own DIY tobacco e liquids. These are tinctures and flavour concentrates.
Tinctures (often also confusingly called concentrates) are the most concentrated real tobacco extracts available. You only need a few drops to transform your VG/PG/ nicotine base into a rich-tasting tobacco-flavoured brew.
Tinctures pack much more flavour than flavour concentrates. However, they’re runnier in consistency, and usually darker and more opaque in colour.
Tobacco tinctures go a long way!
The great thing about real tobacco tinctures is that they go a long way. Tinctures also allow for huge flexibility in terms of flavour strength and quality, and in very small amounts.
I usually add only 2ml of these real tobacco tinctures to my usual 50ml PG/VG/nicotine base. This gives me a powerful and distinctive tobacco-flavoured e liquid. That said, you can get away with using even less if you prefer a lighter flavour.
Tobacco flavour concentrates
Tobacco flavour concentrates are thick, golden-brown coloured liquid flavour additives. Concentrates make up around 30% of the liquid content of most off-the-shelf Chinese-made tobacco e liquids.
Flavour concentrates are almost always PG-based. They’re produced by using heat to extract tobacco essences from dried and cured tobacco leaves.
Tobacco flavour concentrates are more widely available than tinctures. They’re also cheaper in terms of the amount you get vs cost per unit. However, they are also much more dilute.
Best Hangsen tobacco concentrates for DIY
Hangsen is the best-known biggest producer of tobacco flavour concentrates. I’ve tried many of their concentrates myself and can recommend a few for you to try.
“Reds”, “Tobacco”, and “Turkish tobacco” and “Virginia” are all worth getting hold of.
My favourite Hangsen liquid though has to be good old RY1. Add just 5 drops of this to 30ml of base and it you get an amazingly rich tobacco base flavour. Any more, and you start to notice other flavours which aren’t so nice. Use sparingly!
Hangsen Tobacco Concentrates to avoid
However, I would avoid “Euro Blend”, and any of the clear-coloured tobacco bases. These are just flavour compounds and contain no tobacco extracts.
Base liquid for DIY tobacco flavours
Most DIY vapers have their own preferred blends of VG/PG/distilled water, etc, and so do I.
I usually mix my own bases rather than ordering pre-made nicotine base liquid, as this works out cheaper. However, I know some people who prefer the simplicity of buying their base liquid already mixed.
Using nic salts in your tobacco e liquid base
If you want extra authenticity and a smoother throat hit, your best bet is to try mixing with nicotine salts. These are more or less same as regular nicotine bases. But salts also contain an additive which makes the nicotine more easily absorbed into the bloodstream.
VG and PG ratios with tobacco flavourings
As a general rule of thumb, using flavour concentrates in high ratios usually requires less VG. This is because your finished concoction will already be quite thick, thanks to the concentrate.
Tinctures, on the other hand don’t tend to add much body to your juice. So, try upping the VG to 50% or so in relation PG content. Doing this should give you a slightly smoother, heavier draw.
Heating your tobacco liquids for smoothness
I’d also recommend a few seconds in the microwave when completely mixed. This will make the finished liquid silkier and more fluid.