If you’ve taken up vaping recently, and spent any time on e-cigarette forums or blogs, you might be wondering, “What is mouth to lung?” You’ll probably also see people talking about direct to lung, and work out that these are two different ways of vaping. What’s the difference though? Which one is best, and most importantly – are you doing it all wrong?

Well, here’s some good news; no, you’re probably not. If you’re an ex-smoker, and you inhale vapour the same way as you used to do it with smoke, then you already have mouth to lung nailed right down. All it means is inhaling, holding the vapour in your mouth for a moment then drawing it all the way in.

Once you know this it’s easy to work out that direct to lung is just what it sounds like – inhaling straight into your lungs. So what’s the difference between the two? In fact, why are there two different ways to inhale anyway? Basically it all comes down to the sort of vaping experience you’re looking for.

What’s the difference?

You’ve probably noticed already that there are a few different vaping styles. The vast majority of e-cigarette users vape pretty much the same way as they used to smoke. With modern equipment that can generate an impressive cloud, but for some it still isn’t enough. They want a huge cloud, and they’re willing to change the way they vape to achieve it. That’s where direct to lung comes in. By using high-powered atomisers with very open airflow, it’s possible to massively increase how much vapour comes off your coil – and the way to get that airflow is by inhaling direct to lung.

Most of us aren’t really interested in seeing who can create the biggest fog bank, though. As long as our setup creates enough vapour to mimic the smoke of a cigarette, that’s plenty. Direct to lung has some disadvantages, too, so for the majority of vapers, mouth to lung is probably the way to go. Here’s why.

Catching the flavour

One of the best things about vaping is the huge range of flavours you can choose from. E-liquid has come a long way from the early days, when there was just a handful of synthetic tobacco flavours to choose from. Now there are thousands of options, and many of them are real works of art.

The problem with direct to lung vaping is that all those delicious flavours are sucked over your tongue so fast you don’t really have time to appreciate them. To compensate, many cloud chasers mix their own liquids and push the flavour concentration up to insane levels – over 20% in some cases. This pushes up the price of mixing, because the flavours are the most expensive ingredient by a long way.

They’re also the ingredient you probably don’t want to be inhaling too much of – although flavours are pretty safe, they’re not as safe as VG, PG or nicotine. For the average vaper there’s nothing to worry about, but if you’re inhaling huge amounts of juice with a 20% flavour concentration that might expose you to an unnecessary risk.

Sticking with mouth to lung means you can enjoy the full effect of your favourite flavours at a much lower concentration, because you’re not hoovering it all straight into your lungs (lungs don’t have taste buds). You’ll also use less liquid, making your vaping even more economical compared to smoking.

What do you need?

Mouth to lung vaping doesn’t need extreme low resistance or high power, so pretty much any modern mod will be able to deliver the power you need. You’re not going to be using 50 watts. What’s harder is finding a suitable atomiser. Most of the leading modern tanks are designed for direct to lung, with large airflow and multiple coils. A single, higher-resistance coil (no lower than 0.5Ω) is better for mouth to lung. Airflow is less critical; as long as your tank has adjustable airflow you can close it down to get the right effect.

Choosing your liquid is also important. Direct to lung tends to give better throat hit, but you can compensate for that by using a liquid with more nicotine or a higher percentage of PG. Standard flavour concentrations of 4-7%, depending on the flavouring, will work perfectly – in fact, any higher is likely to be overpowering.

There’s no special technique to learn. Just fill up, press the button and inhale the vapour just as if it was a cigarette. Mouth to lung is the easiest form of vaping to master, and for most people it’s also the most satisfying. There’s nothing wrong with direct to lung, and if you decide you’d like to try cloud-chasing that’s the way to go, but for nine out of ten vapers there’s no need; mouth to lung is just fine!

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