We’ve all seen smokers blowing rings from their mouth.
But did you know they can also be produced by the firing of rocket launchers? From quickly lighting a cigarette lighter?
On rare occasions, they’re even produced naturally by volcanos.
Smoke rings are formed when a cloud of smoke is quickly injected into the air through a narrow opening.
So what’s this got to do with competitive vaping?
Well, vape rings – smoke rings rebranded for the age of vaping – are the basis of many of the more advanced tricks. You’ll need to perfect them if you want to become a pro cloud chaser.
Fortunately, there are some super-simple vape tricks that you can do with minimal practice.
But more on those later…
In the rest of this post, you’ll also learn about vaping contests, the rules, and how they’re judged and the box mod builds and e-juice you’ll need to reach vape god status.
Your path to the vaping glory starts here!
What exactly is competitive vaping?
While the exact origins aren’t exactly clear, it’s accepted that the first competitive e-cigarette events began around 2012. Also known as cloud chasing, it’s popularity has grown since then with events popping up everywhere including the UK, the US, Indonesia, and Vietnam.
Professional travelling vapers take part in what are known as cloud competitions. In short, whoever blows the biggest and most attractive clouds of vapor takes home the prize money.
Cloud chasing integrates technique, e-juice mixing, airflow, and using the best equipment.
With the right setup “vaping tricksters” impress their audiences performing tricks with elaborate names like The Dragon, The Bull Ring and The Jellyfish.
Of course, it’s not all about competing.
It’s also a relaxing, recreational activity. The internet is awash with message boards, Facebook groups, and YouTube channels where you can learn the latest techniques.
Vaping Competitions - What Are The Rules?
Remember the scene from Lord of the Rings where Gandalf wipes the floor with Bilbo’s tiny smoke rings by blowing a pirate ship?
That might just be where competitive vapers got their inspiration.
Of course, there are no official governing bodies. So the organizers of each cloud competition are free to choose their own regulations. However, most events usually follow a similar set of rule which are simple for anyone to learn.
Right now, there are two main types of competitive vaping competitions: biggest cloud contests, and trick contests.
Biggest cloud contests
TLDR: Blow big vape clouds. Biggest cloud wins.
There is a little more to it than that, however.
Firstly, competitions can be run in a ‘knock-out’ style format, with the winner of each round moving on to the next stage.
Competitors usually (but not always) stand back to back with each other, and then when instructed begin to blow the biggest cloud they can.
Next, an adjudicator will measure the clouds with a tape measure or yardstick and award the victory to the largest cloud. A huge vape cloud isn’t the only thing that matters though. Some competitions will also judge by the density and cleanliness of the cloud.
Of course, if everyone was just allowed to turn up with their best competition portable vape mods then there would be no skill involved. Whoever chose the best cloud chasing build and vape juice would be the winner. That’s why most competitions set restrictions for fairness.
To keep things fair, most events have competitors use the same e-liquid. There’s also likely to be some kind of rule surrounding minimum resistance and maximum wattage.
One interesting variation on the cape cloud competition is to require all contestants build their coils from specified parts, within a short time limit just before the bout begins. This levels the playing field and ensures that only the most skillful cloud chaser takes the gold.
Disclaimer: Practicing non-stop for a competition might cause vaper's tongue!
Extreme vaping (trick) contests
As you can probably guess, vape trick competitions are all about wowing the crowd (or more importantly the judges).
Almost reminiscent of an Olympic gymnastics routine, competitors are given a certain amount of time to perform as many vape tricks as possible. There’s a fine balance to be met, between performing a good variety of tricks while still maintaining cloud quality, consistency, and cleanliness.
It’s not just about the vape tricks though. Being a showman and entertaining the judges and crowd is a crucial element of a competitor’s overall score.
Perfecting individual tricks is important, but you also need to be able to perform vape trick combos, chaining multiple tricks together without a noticeable pause in between. Think of this in the same way as stacking high-score combos in the old Tony Hawks Pro Skater video games on the PlayStation.
One way that trick contests differ from cloud blowing-only tournaments is that entrants can choose their best cloud chasing build, and are permitted to participate without any restrictions. The reason for this is that creativity is one of the most important judging criteria. So go ahead and blow the dragon using any juice, mod, or tank that you prefer.
Everyone’s gotta start somewhere. And right here’s as good as any. If you really want to know how to do vape tricks, start with some easy vape tricks like the ones below and learn the fundamentals like blowing vape rings.
One’s you’ve built your confidence and perfected basic techniques, the vape trick world is your oyster!
Three easy vape tricks anyone can do at home
Build your confidence with these super easy tricks. But, before you get started don’t forget to turn off all your fans and air-conditioners, and close all your windows and doors. Drafts are the enemy of vape tricks!
The Waterfall is the first trick that anyone learns to do, all you need is your mod and small plastic bottle (500ml seems to work best). Take a long drag on your vape pen and then exhale into a bottle or container.
Call your wife, girlfriend, housemate to watch (okay, that part's not completely necessary) and then pour out the vapor onto a hard surface like a table.
Congratulations – you’ve just performed your first vape trick!
·Bubbles are another awesome trick any one can do, with just a tiny bit of prep. Grab an old toilet paper tube and fill a dish with a small amount of dishwashing liquid.
Dip one end of the cardboard tube into the liquid, then take a long drag. Now all you need to do is exhale steadily into the dry end of the tube and watch the magic happen.
How big can you blow your bubbles?
·Not only does The Tornado look awesome, it’s super easy to perform AND you’ll be recycling in the process!
Grab another empty toilet roll, but don’t get it wet this time. Take a drag on your vape and exhale onto a flat surface at a medium speed. Now – and this is the bit that takes some practice – once the vapor is completely out of the tube, move back slightly and give the cloud a sharp flick with your hand in a reverse karate chop like motion.Remember that movie Twister? That’s what you're aiming for!
Blowing vape rings
Once you’ve had some fun with our simple vape tricks, you’ll want to turn your focus to blowing O’s.
1.Take a long puff on your vape mod.
2.Make a small O shape with your mouth and lips
Push a small amount of vape out through your mouth
·Inhale the vapor into the back of your throat rather than into your lungs. You need thick vapor for best results, so drag hard.
·As you make the O shape, make sure your tongue is flat down on the bottom of your mouth and pulled back towards your throat.
·Your lips should look like your trying to blow a kiss.
·When exhaling, try to force out a very small controlled cough.
Have we whet your appetite for competitive vaping? We hope so. If you’re looking to move on to more advanced tricks however, you’ll need to study from the experts.
Best build tips for cloud chasing
For better Cloud Chasing results, make sure you have a safe battery and mod. A mod is a bigger mechanical pen that’s on steroids; it’s more functional and designed to produce lots of vapor and increase the flavor of the e juice. Always make sure the mod is never overcharged and do not use a charger that does not come with your mod brand. To avoid possible fire, the coil-builds on your mod should be of low resistance. Do not misuse batteries, as that can cause a fire or an explosion, and do not leave the mod unattended at any time. Mechanical mods are not for beginners.
Use low resistance
A lower resistance coil will get hotter quickly, so the thicker and more impressive your clouds will be. The SMOK RPM 80 RGC coil is rated at 0.17ohms and will get have your glasses steamed up in no time at all.
Dual coil is the way to go
You’ll reduce your resistance as well as getting increased surface area. You’ll also have more contact with the wick. A winning combination for boosting vapor production. Try the MQ2 Dual by Ijoy.
E-juice for blowing huge clouds
One of the best blends recommended for preventing from getting a harsh throat is a mix of propylene glycol (PG) and vegetable glycerin (VG). For Cloud Chasing, the VG should be composed of a heavy e-liquid which will create denser clouds. A ratio level of 70/30 VG to PG is for everyday vaping, however if you are heading for competition levels and need dense, thick clouds, it may be best to use a VG of 100%.
Cloud Chasing is a lot of fun although it can be dangerous. Those who want to pursue a vaping competition must do their homework first and make sure they follow all the guidelines for creating safe clouds. If the battery or device gets hot, do not use it, and always make sure you have taken all safety measures before you put the vape in front of your face and turn it on.