What is the Difference Between Regular and Salt Nic?

Regular Nicotine or the Conventional “Freebase” Nicotine:

The regular nicotine or the conventional “freebase” nicotine used in the e-liquids is the PUREST form of nicotine. This is simply mixed with the Vegetable Glycerin (VG) and Propylene Glycol (PG), which act as the carrier of nicotine in it’s purest form. The same nicotine is also used in the NRT (Nicotine Replacement Therapy) – such as – gums, patches, lozenges, and sprays.
Nicotine Freebase
In the 1960s, Phillip Morris, Marlboro, found that freebasing when paired nicotine with ammonia was delivering more of nicotine very effective in vaping on e-juices.

Salt Nicotine:

Salt Nicotine
This is constituting precisely the same nicotine which is in the natural state inside the tobacco leaf. Now if we add this nicotine form to the vape juice very high temperatures will be required for reaching the effectivity of the nicotine. And the problem would be that it will not be in the bioavailable form or its absorption will be delayed. So some modification needs to be done i.e. benzoic acid is added to it.

No rocket science is involved in this simple step. Freebase has a high pH value so it’s alkalinity is increased, which increases the harshness in the throat. So it is usually found that the users vape just a small quantity in lieu of the quantity they actually needed.

But here in case of salt nicotine – benzoic acid which is added to the salt nicotine has vice versa effects. The pH levels get lowered and consequently decrease in its alkalinity. The result is an enjoyable smoother vaping experience.

This way it permits the mixture to be vaped at lower temperatures with the higher concentration of nicotine up to 50 mg. For instance in cheap vape pens and in cigarette-a-likes. This sort of vape juices containing salt nicotine will be less in potency but their nicotine levels can be taken up to 50mg. Such a thing can be performed in your sub ohm tank and its effect can be felt when your lungs do not have the burning sensation anymore.

The Differences between Freebase Nicotine and Salt Nicotine:

Freebase Nicotine

Salt Nicotine


Freebase is more Volatile but in terms of compatibility with the human membrane, it is less.

Salt Nicotine is an inhalable form which is more biocompatible with the human membranes. Resulting in the faster absorption of nicotine.

Point of Saturation

Point of saturation of nicotine in the blood to the level of conventional cigarettes is impossible to be reached in case of freebase nicotine.

Point of saturation is reached faster in the blood in case of the salt nicotine than the conventional cigarettes.

Inhalation Comfort

Freebases are not able to provide that comfort in inhalation which is provided by the salt nicotine.

The smoothness that is rendered by the salt nicotine is appreciable and soothing due to the pH level.


Freebase nicotine is susceptible to oxidation hence not that stable as the salt nicotine compounds.

Salt Nicotine is a better stable compound than the freebases of nicotine.


The effects offered by the freebase nicotine becomes so strong that the hits are harsh in nature.

Salt Nicotine is capable of delivering much more effective and strong effect almost at the snap of a finger. Thus good for hardcore enthusiasts.


The freebase nicotine is to be used in large quantities hence, it is much more expensive.

Less juice is used in salt nicotine forms so the expense is lesser. So basically you get more BANGS for YOUR BUCKS!

Vaping with Both of them Individually

  • As the throat hits and nicotine levels are high the recommendation given by the manufacturers is not to use the salt nicotine in sub ohm devices
  • In lieu of the sub ohm devices, the manufacturers recommend to use it on devices which are low in wattage and higher than ohm coil resistance. The results are lesser in vapor production.
  • The experience is entirely different when you vape with salt nicotine and regular nicotine individually and separately. The reason for it is the very high nicotine content in the salt nicotine
  • .But if vaped on a low wattage device, you may not feel like vaping on higher nicotine levels. As perhaps the saturation point of nicotine in the body is reached quickly.


You may get caught with the gastrointestinal problem in more frequency with the freebase nicotine.

The Salt Nicotine is free from all such health worries. In fact, vaping on salt nicotine keeps you light headed all through the day.


The taste of freebase nicotine at higher nicotine content is unpleasant and hits in the throat are harsh.

The salt nicotine is better in taste and is less harsh in the throat hits.

Types of Nicotine


Nicotine Levulate, Nicotine Pyruvate, and Nicotine BenzoateNot all salt nicotine can be used for vaping purposes. The two conditions that need to be fulfilled are –

  1. They are to be in a volatile state along with the glycol and glycerin part of the vape juice at almost the same temperatures.
  2. Be based on acids that are welcome by our body system and other times be produced by our own body.

Some more differences between Freebase Nicotine and Salt Nicotine

Stealthy Devices –

The salt nicotine is used in stealthy size devices

Refilling –

The refilling of salt nicotine devices is convenient in usage.

Good for Those –

  • Salt Nicotine is good for those who wish to quit smoking combustible cigarettes.
  • Salt nicotine for people who tried their hands on vaping but it did not work for them.
  • This form of nicotine is for them who are new to vaping but do not know what to buy and from where to start.
  • For people who want a nice throat hit and higher nicotine levels but which contends the cigarette smoking experience.

Alteration –

  • The salt nicotine is altered at the molecular level with some benzoic acid or other acids.

Lower Displaced Flavor –

  • For those who have been successful in overcoming the smoking habit and are vaping at 0mg, might have noticed a major change in the flavors of the freebase nicotine.
  • They possess a large footprint in the total consumption of the flavor.
  • With the rising demand for flavors, the chemical part is shortened with great flavors which are full of enjoyment.

Fewer Options –

  • The options available in the salt nicotine is lesser than the freebase nicotine.

Lower fun Factor –

  • The salt nicotine has a lower fun factor as the cloud chasing competitions cannot be based on them. The devices are mostly stealthy so flaunting with them is minimal.

Type of Device –

  • The user of freebase nicotine has to vape on a powerful device to experience its large amount of vapor or the sub ohm devices.
  • Salt Nicotine works superbly on a small-sized device, so easier and cheaper to maintain.
  • These are used in Mouth-to-Lung devices or atomizers which is almost a copy of the conventional cigarettes.
  • Used in the Heart-not-Burn (HnB), newest and well-known devices.
  • The invention of today offers a better palatable delivery of nicotine. The vaper is able to consume an increased quantity of nicotine via respiration system than the freebase nicotine.
  • The salt nicotine is best suited for use in the Pod Systems. This is because the higher amount of nicotine is absorbed so well that it does not require to vaporize at higher temperatures.
  • The devices are sleek in size and look. They have low wattages and work on autofire (you inhale only then it gives you vapors). So these are the devices that the novices can easily invest in. They are user-friendly.
  • These Pod systems are of two kinds –
    • Open System: Manually refill the salt nicotine e-liquids.
    • Closed System: Without having to worry about the mess, buy cartridges or pods which are prefilled e-liquid containers. Mostly sold in a pack of fours.
  • You may vape on lower nicotine levels of salt nicotine like 3mg and 6mg in your sub ohm device. This delivers better smoothness than the freebase nicotine. It does have decent vapor production.

In Nutshell:

Go for both the types, analyze your preferences and then decide for the better choice of nic among both of them.

Leave a comment