Over the years this has been discussed in a few threads and I have consulted with several people via chat looking for the best way to store and handle their nicotine.
The reason this is an important topic to me is I know multiple people, experienced mixers, that have been exposed to concentrated nicotine and I’d really like for folks to consider what they are doing when handling 72+mg/ml nicotine. I use that threshold only because it is common. I do not mean to imply that, say 50mg/ml nicotine, is not also pretty dang poisonous.
First recommendation: Do not mix with concentrated nic like 72mg. When you are making even a large batch most folks would need pretty accurate measurements to safely titrate that 72mg/ml nic into, for instance, 4mg juice. Further, if you need to warm your nic due to it having a high VG concentration and therefore being difficult to draw into a syringe while cold, this means you are temperature cycling your nic, which will result in the accumulation of water due to condensation. Water accelerates nic oxidization in the same way it makes steel rust faster. If you are leaving concentrated nic “out,” that is just plain dangerous to anyone else in your home or your pets. It’s also 100% unnecessary.
My primary concern here is simply the mathematics of probability. With every mix, you are risking spilling it on yourself or elsewhere. If you wear gloves, as you should, that is great. . .but if you spill it, how exactly are you going to clean it off your flooring, carpet or otherwise, to the extent that you a CERTAIN that a loved one wont be exposed to it in the future? In any event, the more times you do something the more likely you are to make an error. An error with 25mg is (at bare minimum) 4x less serious than 100mg. Multiply that increased risk by everyone that mixes and some people are going to get hurt. It is just way too easy and still convenient to work with diluted nic than to take the extra risk of not doing so.
If you do spill concentrated nic on yourself, it is absolutely imperative that you strip your clothing and take a COLD, not warm, and sure as hell NOT a hot shower for 15 minutes IMMEDIATELY. If someone else is around, they need to call poison control while you are showering. If you are alone, keep your phone close by. If you feel any effects, you need to go to the ER. This is not a joke, you can be seriously injured. Members of this forum have done all the above and still ended up in the hospital for several days. I repeat, regularly handling nic at high concentrations is unnecessary, dangerous, and just plain irresponsible.
For storage, a non-self-defrosting freezer is preferred. The colder the better. If you do use a regular freezer, try to keep the nic in the middle of a shelf and away from the vents so it is less exposed to the warmer temperatures of the defrost cycle. Keep it away from your food! It’s freaking poison! I store my 100mg in a regular freezer that is not often opened. I buy PG nic, which means I can work with it while cold. When I do handle 100mg, it is about once a year when I dilute it down to 25mg by adding VG. If you buy 100mg in PG base, you can add 3x as much VG to arrive at a 25mg/ml 25%PG/75%VG nic solution. This I also keep in a freezer. It is just barely thin enough to use while cold. I mix all my juice at 0mg and mix up a 30ml batch of 1-4mg (depending on the gear I am vaping with and what I want from the vape) about once a week by adding in a few ml of my 25mg/ml diluted nic. In your preferences for the calculator, it is the diluted (25mg/ml in my case) that should be used as the nic base concentration.
Store your nic in glass. We all know nic is expensive, so dont let it go bad. But remember, glass will shatter if dropped on hard ground and you will have essentially a dangerous hazardous waste issue to deal with if you do drop it. . .so pay attention.
To further help my nic from oxidizing, I like the one way female Luer taper/slip fittings that help exclude air from the bottle. This is what is used in Nude Nicotine’s Nic Armor bottles. I reuse an old 500ml Nic armor bottle for my 25mg/ml mixing solution. This is great because you can flip the cold bottle of nic upside down and draw directly from the bottle using a Luer taper syringe with no needle. If you dont want to use Nude Nicotine’s Nic Armor (I dont work for them or know them) you can still buy the insert for your bottle. I’m providing a link below, but please also remember that your cap will need to have a flat, NOT a polycone insert to work with this system. Flat PTFE (teflon) caps will work fine. Here is where you can buy the insert for your glass bottles:
In my work I deal with dangerous chemicals regularly. These labs have showers and eyewash stations nearby in case someone is exposed to a nasty chemical. I’ve worked with chemicals so toxic, that no one alive even knows what they smell like, because they kill that quickly. Obviously nic is not THAT bad, but you still need to have a safety-first mindset. When dealing with concentrated nic you need to have a similar thought process in the event you spill on yourself. You need to have a plan on how you will decontaminate yourself and the area where the spill could occur. Think about timeline, tools, and methods for cleanup and disposal. Don’t play with concentrated nic over carpet or other flooring that will absorb the poison. Please be responsible and safe because the ramifications of not doing so can be severe.
Finally, irrespective of where you buy your nic and how you dilute it. . .or even if you do not dilute, you need to spend the $7 to get a nicotine concentration test kit. The test is easy and it is necessary. Remember, you want to be CERTAIN of your nicotine concentration. Errors happen and this is the safest way to know for certain what your nicotine concentration actually is.
I invite anyone with further suggestions to please post them here. I dont mean to sound preachy, although I know that I do. Nevertheless, please consider what I have written and form a plan in your mind should a spill occur. Please be smart and mix thoughtfully. If you dont know how to dilute your nic down to safer levels, please post or come to the chat room and discuss with experienced mixers. This is not a hobby where guesswork is safe. You need to know what you are doing.
Much love and happy vaping!