The benefits of switching from smoking to vaping


Thinking about switching from smoking to vaping? Let’s look in to the facts…


Did you know that smoking is one of the largest causes of death and illness in the UK? Approximately 78,000 people here in the UK die from smoking each year alone, or have debilitating smoking-related illnesses. (1)

Not only does smoking directly affect the smoker but passive smoking can cause serious harm to those around you, including children and loved ones. For example, if you have never smoked but you have a spouse who smokes, your risk of developing lung cancer increases by about a quarter. (2)

More and more people are swapping analogue smoking for vaping, which instead opts for an electric cigarette and the inhalation of nicotine through vapour instead of smoke. This replicates the sensations of smoking, without the many health risks, and has worked as a quitting method for thousands of people across the UK.

If you are looking to jump straight into vaping then check out our Beginners Guide to Vaping.


Why is smoking so bad for you?

Cigarettes contain 250 known harmful chemicals, with at least 69 of these known to cause cancer, such as Arsenic and Formaldehyde. These cancer causing chemicals are often referred to as carcinogens. (3)

As well as cancer causing properties, there are a number of other health detriments that smoking a cigarette can cause on various parts of the body, such as:

As well as cancer causing properties, there are a number of other health detriments that smoking a cigarette can cause on various parts of the body, such as:

  • Heart Doubles the risk of having a heart attack

  • Brain Increases risk of having a stroke by at least 50%

  • Lungs It causes 84% of deaths from lung cancer and 83% of deaths from COPD

  • Mouth and Throat Increases risk of cancer in lips, tongue, throat, voice box and gullet (oesophagus)

  • Circulation Increase blood pressure and heart rate

  • Stomach Increases chance of getting stomach cancer and ulcers

  • Fertility (men) Smoking can cause impotence in men

  • Fertility (women) Smoking can make it harder to conceive

  • Bones Can cause bones to become weak and brittle and increases the risk of osteoporosis in women

  • Skin Prematurely ages skin by between 10 and 20 years

Did you know? Vaping is at least 95% less harmful than smoking. PHE (Public Health England) (5)



What are the benefits of switching from smoking to vaping?


>Many thousands of people in the UK have already stopped smoking with the help of an e-cigarette or vaping device. There's growing evidence that vaping can be an effective tool to help you quit smoking for good. (7)

Using a vape device and e-liquids can help you manage your nicotine cravings. Vaping is widely viewed to be a healthier alternative to smoking, and there’s lots of research backing this. The most obvious reason for this is that there are fewer chemicals in e-cigarettes/e-liquids than in tobacco products. E-liquids are made up of four main ingredients; propylene glycolvegetable glycerine, nicotine and flavourings.

A major UK clinical trial published in 2019 found that, when combined with expert face-to-face support, people who used e-cigarettes to quit smoking were twice as likely to succeed as people who used other nicotine replacement products, such as patches or gum. (8)

There's no evidence to suggest so far that vaping causes harm to other people around you via passive vaping. This is in contrast to second-hand smoke from smoking, which is known to be very harmful to health. (9)

The Health Benefits

According to the NHS, when you’ve quit smoking you reduce your risk of getting cancer, lung and otherwise. You also reduce your risk for heart disease, COPD, stroke, and peripheral vascular disease.  In addition, you'll notice all those unsavoury symptoms, the smoker's cough, the wheezing, the shortness of breath, start to subside.

Some of these effects happen over time, and others can occur in as little as 20 minutes after you put that final cigarette down.

We’ve created a brief timeline for what to expect when you switch from smoking to vaping:

  • After 20 minutes: Your pulse rate should increase and start returning to normal

  • After 8 hours: Carbon monoxide levels in your blood will halve and your oxygen levels should regulate

  • After 48 hours: All traces carbon monoxide will have left your body. As your lungs are clearing your taste and smell will improve

  • After 72 hours: Your energy will increase

  • After 3 months: Lung problems such as coughing or wheezing will subside

  • After 1 year: Your risk of a heart attack will have halved

  • After 10 years: Your risk of lung cancer will have halve

  • You'll save money

Along with the health advantages, some make the switch to vaping simply to save money. Smokers know how expensive cigarettes have become and vaping can be much more cost-effective than tobacco smoking. It is reported that the average smoker spends roughly £150 a month on cigarettes, whereas the average vaper spends around £25 a month.


What are the benefits of switching to vaping for your mental health?

Mental health is a widely prevalent topic, even more so since the covid pandemic. Vapes and e-cigarettes, as part of supporting the quitting smoking process, have shown to increase an individual’s mental health and wellbeing; ultimately improving mood, stress and anxiety. (11)


What are the success rates of quitting smoking with nicotine vaping products?

Public Health England’s (PHE) seventh independent report in England, carried out by researchers at King’s College London, found that:

    • Nicotine vaping products were the most popular aid (27.2%) used by smokers trying to quit in England in 2020

    • It is estimated that in 2017, more than 50,000 smokers stopped smoking with the aid of a vaping product who would otherwise have carried on smoking

Using a vaping product as part of a quit attempt in local stop smoking services had some of the highest quit success rates – between 59.7% and 74% in 2019 and 2020 (12)



When looking at the available information listed above, it is safe to say that vaping is a much better option than smoking and can help you go 'smoke-free'. Couple this with the Public Health England statement that Play Icon vaping is 95% safer than smoking, it is easy to draw your own conclusion. If you have read everything and now want to purchase your first e-cig, take a look at our New To Vaping section, or dive right into our Starter Kits which come with everything you need to get vaping out of the box.


Why is vaping safer than smoking?

Tobacco is the biggest cause of preventable death in the UK. The main reason vaping is safer than smoking is that e-cigarettes do not burn tobacco and do not produce tar or carbon monoxide, two of the most damaging elements of tobacco smoke.

Perhaps the worst effect of cigarette smoke is passive smoking. Unlike smoking a cigarette directly where the smoke passes through a filter, passive smoke is inhaled directly with no filter.

That means anyone near someone who is smoking a cigarette is exposed to the harmful tar, carbon monoxide and other dangerous chemicals present in tobacco smoke.




Choosing the Best Vape to Quit Smoking

The best vape for you will depend on how much you’re used to smoking, as this will affect the right battery and tank capacity for you. In general, starter kits are recommended as they are the simplest to use. Cig-a-likes are also often the first stop for a person quitting smoking. These resemble real cigarettes in appearance and are less expensive. But they're often unsatisfying for heavier smokers and have a limited battery life. If this is the case for you, consider something stronger.

The Best Vape for a Heavy Smoker

If you smoke 10-20 cigarettes a day, starting with a disposable e-cigarette may not be the best choice. It won’t offer enough strength or vapour to fulfil your cravings. Consider a mod with a high battery power to keep you going all day, anything with a battery of 1200mAh+ will suffice.

The Best Vape for a Lighter Smoker

If you consider yourself a lighter smoker, you can get away with most vapes. A pod or a pen may be suited to you. These are simple e-cigs which, thanks to their weight and size, help replicate a cigarette. Our range of starter kits include pods, pens and disposables, which you can simply throw away and replace after vaping.


Help to choosing the Best E-Liquids

When choosing your e-liquid, the main considerations should be the nicotine levels and the flavour. If chosen correctly this can make the leap of smoking to vaping less jarring and still satisfy your cravings.

The Best Nicotine Level for You

The higher the nicotine level, the better suited to smokers. If you’re new to quitting, consider starting with a high nicotine level of around 12mg or more. As you adapt to vaping, consider reducing this gradually to 3mg or even 0mg.

To find out more about nicotine levels, read our Beginners Guide to Vaping

The Best Flavours for You

Many people in the UK choose a tobacco flavour when first quitting to help ease the transition. But with such a huge array of flavours available, it’s easy to find a vape flavour that will suit you.  This can often be trial and error until you find your favourites. Consider fruit flavours, or something less sweet such as coffee or mint. At Vapemate,  tobacco does make our top five, but others are fruity or vanilla custard.  The most popular is Menthol. 

Try These Flavours to Start You Off:

Vape Simply Shortfill

Tobacco Juice Bar 

Menthol The Juiceman

Custard Zombie Blood

Our E-Liquids Guide looks into the different types of e-liquid further.




Using Vaping to Quit Smoking

Needless to say, quitting smoking is hard. However, vaping is an effective and enjoyable method to help you on your journey. If you’re new to quitting, surround yourself with the vaping community, opt for higher nicotine levels in your e-liquids and go easy on yourself! The good news: it gets easier the longer you go.

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