Whether you’re new to vaping or a seasoned pro, you’ll have no doubt heard the term ‘vape it forward’. You might even have been involved in it yourself already. Here’s our guide to what it is, how to get involved and why it’s important for the vaping community.
What is it?
In simple terms, ‘vape it forward’ means passing on unused vape gear or juice to someone who needs it. It comes from the old expression ‘pay it forward’, which describes the recipient of a good deed repaying it to others rather than the original benefactor. In this way, vaping forward helps spread knowledge and goodwill throughout the community, while making use of neglected juice and equipment. It involves charity, recycling and education, and is a valuable way to encourage curious outsiders – particularly smokers looking to quit or find a healthier way of consuming nicotine – to take a risk-free step into vaping.
Why Do It?
Think back to your early steps into vaping. It’s likely you had someone guiding you through the process, whether it was as simple as trying out someone’s cig-a-like at a party, to finding someone willing to give a detailed explanation of the various facets of vaping. It’s easy to forget, but vaping can seem like an intimidating and complicated activity to the newcomer. Vaping items forward means beginners can dip their toe in the water without having to spend money on a decent set-up, as well as having access to a well-wisher who can answer all their questions.
In Person – The simplest, and arguably best, way is to vape forward in person. If your 40-Luckies-a-day uncle shows interest, but is too stubborn to buy his own kit simply pass some old equipment onto him. If you’re vaping outside a bar, and a smoker asks you about your set-up, let them try it and the next time you see them pass them on an outdated kit – with the proviso that one day, they in turn will pass it on. The most powerful tool is demonstration. When people see the satisfaction it gives, along with the (usually) appealing aroma, their interest is often piqued.
Vape Shops – Many vape shops often have a box containing unwanted e-liquid from their customers which people can pick from. This is a good, though anonymous, way of passing on flavours of juice that aren’t to your taste. Sometimes the shops will give you something in return, or you can take a flavour you prefer instead.
Online – There are plenty of places online dedicated to vaping forward. This is usually for the benefit of vapers who are too poor to buy new equipment and juice, rather than newcomers. There have been reports of people feigning poverty purely to get free items, though these scams are rare. Good places to start are Facebook vaping groups dedicated to your region, as then you can meet them one-on-one, and internet forums such as ECF and Reddit.
- Make sure any equipment is clean and in good working order, unless they are being used for replacement parts. Similarly, make sure any juice is within the Use By date, and hasn’t lost its flavour.
- Keep in contact with the recipient and be willing to answer their questions. Remember the complete novice is likely to need plenty of instructions, even when it comes to simple things such as turning on a mod.
- Explain in detail what you’re sending. If you’re giving 36mg nic juice to someone used to 2mg nic, there could be unpleasant consequences. Similarly, make sure any equipment is suitable for the recipient’s skill level. A 0.1 ohm sub tank on a 150w mod is likely to prove overwhelming for the complete beginner.
- Don’t send e-juice and batteries in the post without proper protection. Battery safety should be a priority for vapers, so ensure they’re packed securely, using bubblewrap if possible. E-liquid bottles are prone to leaking so make sure they’re in a sealed plastic bag inside the package.
- Don’t hassle smokers into trying vaping if they aren’t interested. Badgering people is a surefire way to put people off.
The vaping community, on the whole, is a welcoming and friendly place, and the fact that ‘vape it forward’ has become such a widespread term is testament to that. It even helps business as the receiver will likely go on to buy more varied set-ups, putting more money into the industry for future innovations. Not only that, reusing old mods, tanks and juice is much better for the environment than throwing it away. If you have any vaping equipment or e-liquid that you haven’t touched for a few months, do everyone a favour and vape it forward.