Several times now we’ve been asked the questions “How can I calculate the overall nicotine strength of two different strength nicotine bases or shots”, “How can I combine nicotine strengths” and “Is it possible to add two different nicotine bases together”.
The answer to these questions is YES! and throughout this guide we will show you how it can easily be done.
Adding say 18mg strength nicotine shots and 36mg or 72mg strength nicotine to a mix to end up with a final percentage nicotine strength e-liquid is not easy when using a standard e-liquid calculator.
While both our E-Liquid Calculator and Nicotine Shot/Shortfill Calculator will work out the amounts and ratio’s of each ingredient to achieve your desired e-liquid mix, using more than one strength of nicotine to achieve this mix is pretty complicated to achieve in a calculator form. It can be done but we decided not to over-complicate our e-liquid calculators.
However, don’t panic! There is an easy way to combine different strengths of nicotine and to calculate the resultant strength of nicotine.
Once this is done, you will end up with a final strength of nicotine together with a combined volume of nicotine base. From this, you will then be able to use either our E-Liquid Calculator or Nicotine Shot/Shortfill Calculator to work out the different ratios for your perfect e-liquid recipe.
Why Would I Need To Combine Different Nicotine Strengths?
Since us folk in the EU are limited to low strength nicotine (18mg) in fiddly 10ml bottles, unless we were fortunate enough to have stocked up on 72mg strength nicotine prior to the TPD being introduced, we are limited in the final strength nicotine mix we can achieve.
You guys and girls outside of the EU don’t have this problem as you can still obtain 72mg or even 100mg strength nicotine making mixing high strength nicotine e-liquids possible.
As most DIY mixers will know, achieving a high strength nicotine e-liquid mix when using an 18mg or 20mg Nic Shot is impossible. While it is achievable to make a final e-liquid mix of anything up to 14mg strength nicotine, going higher than this while using 18mg or 20mg nic shots is NOT possible.
Saying this, there are limitations to even achieving 14mg strengths, please see our guide on Mixing E-Liquid With TPD Strength Nicotine.
Equally if you’re mixing using Shortfill bottles where you’re required to add your desired amount of 18mg nic shots to the shortfill bottle, you will only be able to make a final e-liquid nicotine strength of 6mg before the shortfill bottle becomes full.
Even if you decant your e-liquid into a larger bottle, adding more 18mg nic shots to try and increase the overall strength of your mix will simply weaken the flavor making it flavorless. Bear in mind though, you will NEVER be able to mix e-liquid at strengths higher than your nicotine base strength nicotine.
So for you guys out there that have a quantity of higher strength nicotine (above 18mg or 20mg), rather than just throwing away your nic shots, you can combine them with a higher strength nicotine (36mg or 72mg). This will in effect give you a lower combined strength of nicotine but high enough to enable you to mix your e-liquid at strengths in excess of 24mg or higher depending on your individual nicotine base strengths.
What Does ##mg Strength Nicotine Actually Mean?
When we say our nicotine base strength is 18mg this means that we have a nicotine strength of 18mg per ml. Therefore, if we have nicotine suspended in a base mix of 10ml, our overall nicotine level of that 10ml bottle is 180mg.
We simply multiply the nicotine base strength, in this case 18mg, by the size of our nicotine base mix bottle, which is 10ml.
18mg per ml x 10ml = 180mg
We can also describe our nicotine strength of 18mg as a percentage. This would simply be written as 1.8%. Moreover, 72mg strength would be written as 7.2%.
Calculating The Resultant Nicotine Strength From Two Different Nicotine Strength Bases.
Calculation Example 1
If we say we have a quantity of 18mg nicotine shots and an amount of 72mg base nicotine strength, we can calculate the final overall nicotine strength if we combine the two together.
Therefore, adding 10ml of 18mg with 10ml of 72mg, we can calculate the following:
10 x 18 = 180. Also, 10 x 72 = 720.
If we add the two together, we have 180 + 720 = 900.
Because we’ve added the two figures together, we also add the two 10ml’s together which gives us 10ml + 10ml =20ml.
Therefore we end up with 20ml of 900mg.
If we then divide 900 by 20, we get 20ml of 45mg nicotine base (4.5%).
Calculation Example 2
If we have a quantity of 30ml of 18mg nicotine shots and 40ml of 72mg base nicotine strength, we can calculate the final overall nicotine strength if we combine the two together.
30 x 18 = 540. Also, 40 x 72 = 2880.
Adding the two together, we have 540 + 2880 = 3420.
Because we’ve added the two figures together, we also add the 30ml and 40ml together which gives us 30ml + 40ml =70ml.
Therefore we end up with 70ml of 3420mg.
If we then divide 3420 by 70, we get 70ml of 48.86mg nicotine base (4.9%).
Calculation Example 3
If we have a quantity of 40ml of 18mg nicotine shots, 20ml of 36mg base nicotine strength and 50ml of 72mg base nicotine strength, we can calculate the final overall nicotine strength if we combine the three together.
40 x 18 = 720. Plus 20 x 36 = 720. Plus 50 x 72 = 3600
Adding the three together, we have 720 + 720 +3600 = 5040.
Because we’ve added the three figures together, we also add the three e-liquid quantities together: 40ml + 20ml + 50ml =110ml.
Therefore we end up with 110ml of 5040mg.
If we then divide 5040 by 110, we get 110ml of 45.82mg nicotine base (4.6%).
Summary Of Combining Base Strength Nicotine Calculations
As you can see from the different example calculations we have gone through, you can combine any amounts of nicotine base liquid with any different nicotine base strengths.
This in effect allows you to combine all of your different nicotine bases, making use of your low strength nicotine shots, giving you a higher volume and higher strength nicotine base that you can use more effectively.
One thing you MUST do is clearly label your new base mix with the combined nicotine strength so you know what you have in the bottle for future use.
PG And VG Ratio Of Your Nicotine Base Mix
One thing to be aware of when combining different nicotine base mixes is the ratio of the PG to VG.
While most nicotine is suspended in PG, there are others that can be suspended in VG. Either is fine, it just depends on your preference and of course what type you have that you want to combine.
When you’re DIY mixing your e-liquid, in order to end up with the ratio of PG to VG your after in your final resultant e-liquid mix, you need to be aware if the nicotine is suspending in 100% PG or 100% VG. Equally, you can have a 50/50 mix or even a 70/30 ratio. It doesn’t matter as long as you know what the mix ratio is.
If your combining different nicotine bases and both are in PG or VG then ensure you write this base on your label on the bottle. If you are combining 50% of PG nicotine base and 50% of VG nicotine base, then ensure your label is clearly identified as a 50/50 nicotine base mix.
As I’ve mentioned, it really doesn’t matter as long as you know so you can correctly work out your final PG/VG ratio of your desired e-liquid mix.
When prompted to input your nicotine base mix into our e-liquid calculator, simply select the nicotine base mix ratio that you have, this can be PG, VG, a 50/50 mix, or select the “Custom” tab which allows you to specify the mix ratio that you have ended up with.
Using Your Newly Combining Base Strength Nicotine
Now you have your newly combined nicotine base strength, all that is left to do it to input your nicotine base strength into either our Nicotine Shot/Shortfill Calculator or our E-Liquid Calculator and they will work out the exact quantities of each of your other ingredients.
Summary Of Combining And Calculating Nicotine
As we’ve discussed within this guide, combining and calculating different nicotine base strengths is possible and straightforward to do. The only two things to ensure when doing this are that you label the resultant nicotine strength of the combined nicotine and the PG/VG ratio that it’s suspended in.
For people that DIY mix their own e-juices and vape at a higher strength nicotine percentage, this really is a cost effective solution to use those 18mg nic shots that would otherwise not be strong enough to use on their own.
Equally, adding 18mg strength nic shots to a shortfill bottle really is limited to giving you a maximum strength of 6mg. Adding more shots to increase the strength will dilute the flavor beyond recognition making is useless. In this instance, adding a higher strength nicotine base to a shortfill bottle means you can achieve nicotine strengths far greater than 6mg and not dilute the flavor in the shortfill bottle.
Hope you enjoyed this guide and found it useful.