How do you find a reliable vape pen? Well, first you do your research, then you make your own juice.
Never made your own vape pen juice? Don’t worry, I will show you how.
I’ll also give some reasons why you’d want to make your own juice, as well as an overview of what to look for in a vaporizer. Keep reading to learn about vaporizers and why they are a wonderful way to enjoy marijuana.
About Making Vape Oil:
One of the best things about marijuana is how adaptable it is. Not only can you smoke it, but you can also infuse butter or cooking oil with it, or condense it into a concentrated form to feel the effects fast.
Why would you choose concentrated marijuana?
In many cases, this form of marijuana is for medicinal purposes. For one thing, the concentrated form can provide rapid pain relief for people who experience frequent migraines. In a similar fashion, it can reduce anxiety and stress to those who need it most. It also is useful for muscle-related issues such as MS or chronic muscle spasms.
The Image Of Marijuana
The problem with marijuana is that it has been widely misunderstood and misrepresented. Without a doubt, people who don’t know any better envision marijuana users as grungy, irresponsible, good-for-nothing folks, who are going nowhere in life.
This is not the full truth.
The fact is, plenty of people need marijuana to maintain a high quality of life, and they might not even be smokers. Perhaps they have never consumed marijuana recreationally and only use it as needed for their health. This is why it is so useful to have other (more healthy) methods of consuming marijuana. Given that one of the more healthy (and less understood) ways to consume marijuana may be a vape pen or electronic cigarette, it is worth considering.
The Vape-Pen And Concentrated Marijuana
Unfortunately, the rising trend of using vape pens to consume concentrated amounts of marijuana has attracted a lot of unwanted attention. This is coupled with the fact that it is not hard to find news stories of irresponsible drug users inhaling concentrated doses of marijuana to get a more extreme high. Obviously, these attention seekers are portrayed as a plague to society, but they do not reflect most marijuana users.
The problem is:
This image of concentrated marijuana users is not only false, but it is also particularly harmful. For one thing, it discourages those who might benefit from medical marijuana from trying concentrates as a solution to their problems. Obviously, they do not want to end up like what they’ve seen on the news. The negative image also helps keep concentrates use illegal, making it harder to access for those who need it.
Of course, the fear comes from the fact that it is concentrated. It must be remembered, however, that concentrated marijuana has been used for generations, in a variety of forms.
Here’s the deal:
Marijuana is not concentrated so that drug addicts can get a bigger fix. In spite of what viral videos suggest, marijuana is concentrated in order to increase the beneficial effects as quickly and safely as possible.
Plus, there’s more to the story:
The fear may be by design due to encouragement from the pharmaceutical industry. Once people can grow their own marijuana and self-medicate for a variety of health issues, that industry will take a hard hit. Therefore, it’s in their direct interests that growing, distributing, buying, and using marijuana remain illegal.
Interesting fact; marijuana is not legal in Jamaica! Learn how rastafarians get to appreciate ganja in our free ebook.
What is a vape pen?
There are many ways to consume concentrated cannabis, by all means, a vape pen is likely the most popular. A vape pen or electronic cigarette (“E-cig”) is a relatively new technology that heats up cartridges or vials of concentrated marijuana. Many people believe that they are a healthy alternative to smoking, however at the present time there is not enough research to understand the long-term effects.
But guess what?
There are also vaporizers that do not use concentrated marijuana called dry herb vaporizers. The best dry herb vaporizers guarantee easier and safer user experience while vaporizing cannabis compared to smoking weed. While the quality of these vaping gadgets depends on many factors such as battery life, temperature control, the speed of heat-up, the size of the heating chamber, and the material of the vapor path, you can find one that works for you. There are many options in dry herb vaporizers, that’s why the high-quality, full-fledged dry herb vaporizer is costly.
However, you don’t have to buy the most expensive vape.
As I have said, there are many factors to consider, such as where and how you will use it. You’ll also want to remember that there is little regulation around them, meaning you are at risk of purchasing a cheap, knock-off pen with cheaply produced, foreign parts. Even so, that doesn’t necessarily mean that everything cheap has poor quality. If you want to do it right, it’s important to do your research and find the highest-quality vape pen that your budget can afford to ensure a healthy experience.
A vape pen comes in different types and models and it can be challenging to choose between the options, however, on the positive side, there is a basic structure to them. They all include a cartridge, atomizer, and battery.
The cartridge is where the tincture drops (or the vape pen “juice”) are added, one drop at a time. (Some pens do not have refillable cartridges). One end of the cartridge is where your lips touch while inhaling while the other end of the cartridge attaches to the next component: the atomizer.
The atomizer heats up the marijuana, changing it from its liquid form to gas, or vapor. Vape pens use a variety of atomizers that provide different levels of heat, but there aren’t many options to choose from.
The longest component of any vape pen or E-cig is the battery. Batteries can vary by model and may be manual or automatic. A manual vape pen requires ignition of some sort, such as a button that needs to be pressed before it works. With automatic vape pens, on the other hand, you only need to inhale.
Buying a high-quality vape pen
The best way to ensure you are buying a high-quality vape pen is to do your research beforehand. Make sure that the brand is reputable and well-reviewed. You can easily find this type of information online.
With that in mind, know that you might encounter some overpriced vape pens. Once in a while buyers are tricked by vendors a selling a cheap pen, such as one that should cost just $5, for as much as $75 or $80. You should be able to avoid this so long as you check online and read up on the manufacturer.
I can not say this enough:
The safest way to go about it is to choose a reputable brand, then buy from one of their licensed vendors so you can rest assured you know exactly what you are getting.
Tip: make sure to download my free Grow Bible to learn how to grow your own cannabis
If you’re not particularly concerned about quality, you should be. Seeing that this is a tool that changes and sends something straight into your body, a low-quality product can have a direct, negative effect on your health. By the same token, it could be dangerous because of cheaper, knock-off components or inferior and unhealthy metals.
That’s not all…
What is vape pen juice?
As much as the actual device matters, the “juice” itself is important. Given that the juice is what goes into your body, you need to ensure that this “juice” is just as high in quality as the vape pen. Be that as it may, making vape juice generally requires weeks of time. As a a result, most people will not bother to make it.
So what’s in that “juice”?
Vape juice is a form of oral tincture. That means it is a liquid substance made primarily of either glycerin or alcohol, with herbs infused into it.
Did you know?
Oral tinctures were initially designed to be consumed as drops under the tongue. They are processed differently than edibles because they bypass your liver. This makes tinctures easier to absorb for those with certain metabolism problems that may affect their ability to ingest marijuana via edible products.
Tinctures have a long history.
As a matter of fact, oral tinctures have been around for thousands of years! Using a vape pen or E-cigarette to consume them, on the other hand, is the new part. That is to say, marijuana oral tinctures are perfectly safe, and when made and used correctly they are incredibly effective.
Remember, you have options.
There are some great resources on where to buy your vape oils, but you can also make your own vape juice. More on that below, but first, some reasons why you might.
The benefits of making vape juice yourself
Why should you spend the several weeks it takes to make the oral tinctures or vape juice? As with any type of consumable product, it is always best when you know exactly where it comes from, and what is in it. That is to say, if you buy it from a distributor or from store shelves, you only can know so much about what actually makes up that product.
On the other hand,
When you make it yourself, you know exactly what went into it, and how that affects your body. Of course, this is simply a healthier way to do it.
How to make your own vape juice
The first thing you will need is some high-quality marijuana. The best way to ensure you have high-quality is to grow it yourself. My recipe uses powdered hash or bud. However, you don’t need to grow extra weed for that. Make hash from the trim of your marijuana plants and you can leave the buds for smoking.
You can use any marijuana strain for your juice, however, here are a few of my favorites:
Once you’ve prepared your marijuana, you’ll need to purchase glycerin.
In general, it is not a good idea to make vape juice with non-food grade propylene glycol or glycerin. This is because food grade products must be stored in containers that are safe and non-toxic, as propylene glycol and glycerine both absorb the chemicals from any container it has been stored in. If you use the non-food grade version of these products, it should only be applied externally.
Do not consume or inhale anything with non-food grade propylene glycol or glycerin in it.
For that reason, this recipe calls for only 100% USP-food grade vegetable glycerin. Not only will it ensure your health and safety but using glycerin instead of propylene glycol will also produce more vapor overall. Blends of both are probably best for E-cigarettes that have juices that are nicotine-based.
There are other options as well:
Some people prefer to buy a product such as EJMix, which has a mixture of Propylene Glycol and Polyethylene Glycol in it. These products are both found in commercial vape juice.
Better vape juice comes from better weed. Download my free Grow Bible to learn to grow like a pro
This recipe can also work for non-marijuana herbs, depending on your medical needs and taste preferences. Herbs such as lavender, garlic, mint, milk thistle, tobacco, and others can all be substituted for marijuana in this recipe, and they can also be taken as regular tinctures (under your tongue). While the recipes may vary slightly according to which herb you prefer, the process is nearly the same, so this marijuana-based recipe can still be used with other herbs.
The first step is to decarboxylate your marijuana. This is needed in order convert the THCA to THC. The activation process usually occurs automatically when a plant is burned, or smoked but because e-liquid vaporization temperatures may not get hot enough, decarboxylation can be good idea. Read Decarboxylating Marijuana – The Internal Process of THC Formation to find out how decarboxylating marijuana works.
Next, you’ll create a tincture and mix it with glycerin. Here’s how to do that:
- 5 grams of pure, blonde, powdered hash or 7 grams of high-quality bud (ground by hand) and decarboxylated
- 2-4 ounces of high proof alcohol (180 proof or higher; must be drinkable alcohol; 100 proof is the absolute minimum) — vodka is preferable, for its flavor neutrality
- 2-4 ounces of 100% USP-food grade vegetable glycerin
- 2 sterile canning jars and plastic lids
- 1 cheese cloth
- Fill your jar halfway with decarboxylated marijuana. Add alcohol until it covers the prepared weed by at least one-quarter inch. Place the lid on the jar and shake vigorously.
- Place the jar (still tightly closed) in a dark location for 10-14 days. The alcohol will extract the THC from the decarboxylated marijuana. At least once per day, shake the jar vigorously. Over time, some alcohol will evaporate. Add more as needed to keep the marijuana covered and prevent mold.
- After 10-14 days, strain the mixture through the cheesecloth, and pour it into the second sterile canning jar. Mix this THC-infused alcohol with the 100% USP-food grade vegetable glycerin. Put the lid on and shake vigorously for a minimum of two minutes.
You now have your vape juice!
This method of creating vape pen juice will leave small amounts of alcohol in the final product. The alcohol acts as a natural preservative, and is hardly noticeable as much of it is diluted by the glycerin. If you don’t properly preserve your tincture (also known as curing), you could develop liquid pneumonia from vaping it. Commercially-made vape pens cure their tinctures using faster methods that also remove the alcohol.
If you want to remove more of the alcohol, strain the mixture well or simply add more vegetable glycerin to thin the mixture.
Adding flavor to your vape juice
The key to safely adding your preferred flavor is never to use artificial coloring. It will likely change color anyway, because of the natural plant coloring, so just leave it as is so that you will not be inhaling any dangerous chemicals.
You should also avoid any store-bought flavorings because they also will contain harmful chemicals — including non-food grade propylene glycol, which you just spent so much effort keeping out of your mixture. Don’t ruin it now by adding these harmful ingredients.
Some people prefer to use essential oils for their flavorings while others go for the tincture blending route. For this recipe, we will just discuss the method for mixing together different tinctures to create a desired flavor.
One way you could mix tinctures for flavoring is to use:
- 3 parts tincture of Cannabis, and 1 part tincture of wild blackberry;
- 3 parts tincture of Cannabis, and 1 part tincture of chocolate mint;
- 3 parts tincture of Cannabis, and 1 part tincture of garlic;
- 3 parts tincture of Cannabis, with 1 part tincture of tobacco; or
- 3 parts tincture of Cannabis, with 1 part tincture of just about anything.
The flavoring depends solely on your personal preferences. In general, when using a vape pen, you will only need about half as much as you would take when using tinctures sublingually. A common dosage for under the tongue is between 3 and 5 milliliters of juice.
Shopping for a vape pen can be hard, but at least you have some control over the quality of what you put in it. If you take the time to learn how to create your own vape juice you can have a convenient way to enjoy rapid delivery of medical marijuana.
Thanks for reading! If you want to know more about growing your own marijuana for your vape juice, make sure you check out my free marijuana grow guide.
Frequently asked questions
How do you sterilize your jars? To sterilize most jars, you need to apply heat. Many canning jars can be sterilized by simply rinsing them under very hot water. You can also place them in boiling water for a few minutes.
How can I evaporate alcohol out of my tincture? This is not necessary, but can be done by slowly heating the tincture before mixing it with the glycerin. I don’t recommend this because alcohol is flammable. Heat can also evaporate your THC. Expose the tincture to air or leave the alcohol in it.
Is there a difference between tinctures and concentrates? Yes. Tinctures are a specific type of concentrate. They are extracts mixed with a liquid base. There are also thicker concentrates with no added bases, such as hash oil.
Do you need to decarb your weed before making a tincture? Decarboxylation helps with potency. Some concentrate recipes do not need to decarb because they are still smoked. For a vape pen or oral tincture, it is a good idea.
The founder of I Love Growing Marijuana, Robert Bergman, is a marijuana growing expert that enjoys sharing his knowledge with the world. He combines years of experience, ranging from small-scale grows to massive operations, with a passion for growing. His articles include tutorials on growing... [read more]