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Stealth Vaping
August 11, 2023
6 min to read

Stealth Vaping and How to Exhale Zero Vapor

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Jeremy Mann

What is stealth vaping?

Stealth vaping is the act of vaping in a discreet manner. Using small vapes that generate smaller plumes of vapor, the user can regulate the exhaled-puff barely visible. This form of vaping works best with concealable devices that have low power and have a tight MTL draw, often called stealth vapes.

Stealth vaping is what you do when you don’t want to draw unwanted attention to yourself. However, stealth vaping can still produce visible vapor (if you're not doing it right). It’s not wise to do it in spaces where vaping is banned. New laws spring up frequently that place public vaping in the same category as smoking cigarettes, and some places that forbid vaping—like on an airplane—could land you in deep trouble with the law if you’re caught.

Common places where vaping is banned:

  • Airplanes
  • Government property grounds
  • Public transportation
  • Theaters
  • Hospitals
  • Schools
  • Other establishments are on a case-by-case basis. In general, the easiest indicator is to look for “no smoking” signs. The FDA has deemed vape products as tobacco products, and vapor is rarely viewed by the law to be different from smoking. If you get the urge to vape, always ask what the rules are.

    How to stealth vape?

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    Some people treat stealth vaping like an art form! This requires a certain boldness from the user, as well as a few simple steps:

    Step one: Get an ultraportable beginner vape kit like a disposable vape or even a pod vape. These devices are small enough to fit in the 5th pocket of jeans. They come in various small forms and often look like little highlighters, flash drives, or even key fobs. And as a rule of thumb, the smaller the device is, the less vapor it will put out. Low vapor with a discreet form factor is what you’ll need.

    Step two: Cover your LED lights. Most ultraportable vape kits have a small LED light that turns on while your drawing on the device. Typically, this light is small enough to cover with your finger when you take a hit. If you don’t conceal the light, what you’re doing will become more obvious to others — especially in low-lighting situations.

    Step three: Take short puffs. Up to a few seconds. The longer you draw on the device, the larger the cloud will be. Although small devices don’t put out a lot of vapor, a long puff will put out more than a short one. When you go to exhale the vapor, it’s best to purse your lips and blow a tight stream of vapor downward and away from any onlookers. Remember, stealth vaping is discreet, not invisible.


    What is zero vaping?

    Zero vaping is a type of stealth vaping where the user takes a hit but exhales no vapor. Zero vaping is the ultimate in clandestine vaping. It’s like turning your vape device into a nicotine inhaler! This style became popularized more recently with people zero vaping the JUUL, and it should only be attempted with similar devices that are small and concealable. Attempting to zero vape on bigger and more powerful device like a sub ohm tank will likely result in an embarrassing coughing fit, followed by vapor jumping out of your face. Not stealthy at all.

    Those that have mastered this technique can vape sitting next to someone who’s clueless to what’s happening. While zero vaping refers to the lack of vapor exhaled, adding stealth vaping methods with it is like a sleight of hand. Using an ultraportable, the device is totally concealed in the palm. Sounds get muted and lights are covered. The hand is held naturally to the mouth—as if pondering a thought. Secretive hits are taken when the opportunity presents itself.

    Still, like all forms of vaping, even zero vaping is not wise where vaping is banned. Although no vapor will be seen leaving the mouth, the noise of the coil activating could potentially draw attention, and a wisp of vapor may be seen from an uncovered airhole on the device. Since the public is hip to what vaping is, even if largely being misguided about the specifics, you can be spotted and reported.

    How to zero vape

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    Stealth vaping is easy. Zero vaping takes practice. There will be a little breath-holding here. This will change your normal vaping and inhaling technique, and it may take some getting used to.

    There are two ways to zero a vape and they’re best used with beginner starter kits. Both require a hit for just a couple of seconds, but those attempting for the first time should try the shortest puffs. They also both begin as an MTL draw where vapor is first held in the mouth for a moment before going to the lungs.

    1. Multiple short inhales: Take a small puff. Instead of immediately exhaling, quickly inhale a short bit of air again from mouth and nose. Still not exhaling. Repeat this once or twice more. You should feel your chest expanding as more air goes in. Hold your breath for an additional second or so if you can, then exhale with lips pursed.
    2. One deep inhale: Take a small puff. Then take that puff down to the lungs in a long and deep inhale, lasting about three to five seconds. Not an aggressive inhale, but it should still last several seconds and be steady and deep. Exhale slow and deliberate with pursed lips.
    3. If some vapor still leaves your mouth, try a shorter hit, a longer duration of holding your breath, or taking deeper breaths.

      You may get a head rush when doing this the first few times. If your nicotine level is too high and you don’t like the feeling, stop attempting it. Resume your normal ways of vaping.

      Vaping should always feel good to the user. But if you really need zero vaping to work for you and the nic hit is too high, try a lower nicotine level or a device that puts out less vapor.


      Why vape like this?

      A good portion of the public sees vaping as another form of smoking. There’s often a negative social impact when users openly exhale vapor.

      Despite research that shows second-hand vapor to be non-toxic, users can be hassled for vaping—sometimes in places where it’s okay vape! Luckily, stealth vaping is a great way to enjoy your vape privately, even if in public.

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      Jeremy Mann

      Vaping since: 14 years

      Favorite products:

      Favorite flavors: Desserts, fruit mixes, sweet tobaccos

      Expertise in: Vaping history, MTL vapes, DIY, cannabis/vapes

      Jeremy Mann

      Previously having been the chief-editor, I am now a contributor here at Vaping360 and I reside in southeast Michigan. I've been vaping since my first ecig purchase in 2010. For more reasons than I can list, vaping has been a lifesaver for me. Now, my goal is to help other smokers make the switch.

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