Comparing Vaping to Smoking: A Simple Guide

Health Impact of Vaping vs Smoking

Smoking involves burning tobacco, which produces harmful smoke containing chemicals like tar and carbon monoxide. Inhaling this smoke can lead to serious health problems such as lung cancer, heart disease, and respiratory issues.

Fact: Tobacco smoke contains over 7,000 chemicals, including at least 70 known carcinogens. Smoking is directly linked to a host of diseases, including lung cancer, heart disease, stroke, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). It's also the leading cause of preventable death worldwide.

Vaping, on the other hand, doesn't involve burning tobacco. Instead, it heats a liquid (called e-liquid or vape juice) to create vapour, which users inhale. While vaping is generally considered less harmful than smoking because it produces fewer harmful chemicals, it's not without risks.

The absence of tobacco combustion, which releases thousands of chemicals, many of which are toxic and can cause cancer, is a fundamental difference between vaping and smoking. Public Health England has suggested that vaping is 95% less harmful than smoking traditional cigarettes.

Nicotine Addiction

Both vaping and smoking contain nicotine, the addictive substance that keeps people coming back for more. However, some argue that vaping might be less addictive because users can control the nicotine levels in their e-liquids more easily than with cigarettes.


Smoking requires lighting up a cigarette, which can be inconvenient, especially in places where smoking is restricted. Plus, smokers need to carry around packs of cigarettes and a lighter.

Vaping, on the other hand, is more convenient in many ways. Vape devices are usually small and portable, making them easy to carry around. Plus, there's no need for matches or lighters – just press a button, and you're ready to vape.

Vaping vs Smoking, Which is cheaper

The cost of vaping versus smoking can vary depending on factors like how much you consume and the types of products you use. Initially, buying a vape device and e-liquids might seem more expensive than a pack of cigarettes. However, vapes can be more cost-effective in the long run because e-liquids last longer than cigarettes, and vape devices are reusable.

Secondhand Smoke vs Secondhand Vapour

Smoking doesn't just affect the smoker – it also harms those around them through secondhand smoke. Secondhand smoke can cause health problems like respiratory issues and heart disease in nonsmokers who are exposed to it.

Vaping produces aerosol, not smoke, so it's often seen as less harmful to bystanders. However, the aerosol from vaping still contains chemicals that could be harmful, so it's best to vape away from others, especially kids and pets.

Flavours Vaping Wins Everytime

One advantage of vaping is the wide variety of flavours available. E-liquids come in all kinds of flavours, from fruity to minty to dessert flavours like cake and ice cream. This variety can make vaping more enjoyable for some people, especially those trying to quit smoking.

Cigarettes usually taste like, well, cigarettes. Some brands offer menthol or flavoured cigarettes, but they're not as diverse as vape flavours.

Environmental Impact

Cigarette smoking has a significant environmental impact due to the production of cigarette butts and the pollution caused by smoking. Cigarette butts are the most common form of litter worldwide and can take years to decompose.

Vaping, on the other hand, produces less waste because vape devices are reusable, and e-liquids come in refillable containers. However, there are still environmental concerns associated with vaping, including the disposal of vape devices and e-liquid bottles.