First of all, let's look at legit disposable vapes and whether they are safe for you to use. In terms of health, studies have shown that vaping is considered to be 95% safer than smoking. In the UK, the vaping industry is regulated, meaning all new vape products must be checked and approved before they can be legally sold. When buying from a legitimate vendor, such as NZO Vape, you can rest assured that the E-Liquids and vape products have been approved. Part of the requirements for vape products in the UK is that e-cigarette tanks, including disposable vapes, must have a capacity of no more than 2ml. E-Liquids must be limited to a strength of no more than 20mg/ml, so you shouldn’t be able to buy a disposable vape higher than 20mg in the UK. Other requirements include:
- maximum container size for nicotine E-Liquid is 10ml
- packaging must be child-resistant and tamper evident
- ban on ingredients like colouring, taurine, and caffeine
- inclusion of required labelling and warnings
- all e-cigarettes and E-Liquids be notified and published by the MHRA before they can be sold
Fake Disposable Vapes
The above regulations help to keep vaping safe, so it is concerning to see a rise in fake disposable vapes, as this means they have not been deemed safe and approved for sale. Disposable vapes are quite simplistic pieces of kit, which makes them easier to replicate as counterfeit than other vape products. As such, vape bars that appear genuine are being sold, and this is especially an issue for brands like Geek Bar.
Why Are Fake Disposable Vapes Bad?
The Tobacco and Related Products Regulations (TPD) make sure the products you vape are safe through testing, checking ingredients and ensuring nothing harmful has been used. Fake vapes will not have been tested and so won’t comply with these regulations, meaning that you could be vaping something dangerous to you. Another reason you want to avoid fake vapes is that it puts vaping in a bad light and could lead to even stricter regulations that will negatively impact the vaping community. There is a reason the TPD limits nicotine strengths, bottle sizes and packaging requirements - to keep people safe. If people become unwell from a fake, unregulated vape, the news from these incidents can be very detrimental.
How to Spot Fake Vapes?
Worried about picking up a fake vape? These are the signs to look out for.
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Your vape product should include a serial number that you can use to verify that you have a legitimate product. The vape device packaging will feature a code known as an ECID number that you can check on the MHRA website to make sure the vape is legit and has been approved. If you’re worried about whether or not a product is fake, then make sure to check it on the MHRA website, as anyone can print an ECID number on packaging; what matters is that it is listed on the site as an approved product. Here you can see our Nzo Smok Novo Bar listed on the MHRA website.
While there are some great vape deals out there from legitimate vaping businesses, one of the warning signs for a fake vape is a bargain price - if it seems too good to be true, it probably is. Most approved vape kits in the UK retail for around £5. If you find a vape bargain, take a look at a few other sites and compare prices - if it’s way cheaper than other places, it might be worth questioning.
Nicotine Strength and Capacity
We’ve mentioned the regulations around limitations on nicotine strength and tank capacity, so if you find a vape in the UK offering 50mg/ml or a 3ml disposable vape, then it does not comply with UK regulations. Generally speaking, a compliant disposable will offer no more than 600 puffs. Regulations are different in the US, so some products with higher strengths are imported and may not necessarily be fake, but it is still illegal to sell them in the UK.
Packaging guidelines for vape products outline that nicotine warnings must be printed clearly on the labelling, as well as a best before date. If these details aren’t clear on the packaging, then it may be a fake.