Please help check my "getting started" list?

So… I’m VERY new to DIY. As in, I’ve done a lot of reading, but haven’t actually mixed anything up yet. However, I switched off the analogs (~2 packs a day) about 4 years ago, and have quite a bit of time getting the “hardware” up to where I felt like I need to be… that being said, buying juice is getting to be expensive!!!

So far, this forum has been extremely helpful in getting me to feel like I’m ready to start (and this is my first post!!!). I’ve managed to source some PG, VG, nicotine, and all the syringes, etc. However: trying to pick flavors has been driving me crazy!!! So, I figured why not just ask.

A little background: I love custards, creams, and desert vapes (vanilla, caramel, etc). Due to my past, I still occasionally make a forray in to the tobacco flavor world. However, (and… I know some of y’all will think I’m crazy) I can’t stand fruit flavors. I’ve tried… I promise.

I already have the Milk n’ Honey v3, The Bee’s Knees, and Rocket Puppy RY4 recipes on my “to do” list, but wanted to get a few extras to get started. However, for this go-round, I’d like to stick to a single source, and it seems like TPA is generally highly regarded, so I’ll likely make some brand substitutions.

So: please let me know if I’m missing out on anything or if you think I should swap one flavor for a different one (for example- I have no idea what the differences between all the caramels and vanillas they offer are!). Also: I don’t have a feel for what I should go ahead and order 15mL or what I should just get 4mL of. Anyway: The flavor list:

Bavarian Creme
Caramel (Original)
Graham Cracker
Toasted Almond
Vanilla Swirl
RY4 Asian
Black Honey Tobac
Dulce de Leche
Sweet Cream
Vanilla (bourbon)
Brown Sugar
Kalua and Cream
Vanilla Cupcake
Acetyl pyrazine


You’re better off spreading your portfolio, so to speak :wink: Limiting yourself to TPA means you’ll cut off some very good flavors/recipes… I’d say get some Flavour Art, Inawera, maybe some Flavorah then get some of the TPAs :wink:

Here are some of the good flavorings from each vendor:

WRT to TPA I think you’re missing Banana (Ripe), Strawberry (Ripe), Strawberry (Organic), French Vanilla and Cheesecake (Graham Crust) and maybe Vanilla Bean Ice Cream :slightly_smiling:


Thank you. I’m looking at the list now and will probably stick to the same flavors, but change up the vendors and post again. I guess my worry is more that I won’t have “sweeteners” or “thicking agents” or things of that nature. What is generally a good starter kit for texture issues?

Additionally: is there a vendor that has multiple company’s flavors? I’m trying not to pay too much in shipping.

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There are several “one stop” vendors listed on our resource page. Most use ECX, BCV adn there is also DIY Vapor Supply now (these are if you’re in the US, mind you)…


^^^ What @daath said… Also, as far as additives and sweeteners, most of the time, the only additive you might need is Acetyl Pyrazine (AP) and the main sweeteners are already in a lot of flavorings, but you might want to get extra FA Marshmallow for sweetening. So far, that’s the best sweetener I’ve found for most recipes I make and my ‘flavor profile’ is a LOT like yours. I do make some ‘fruity’ recipes now and then, but those are for friends and family. Normally, I vape creamy, nutty, custards, cheesecakes, coffees, and now and then some chocolates.

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Speaking of: I notice the coffees are kinda neglected on the list above. Any suggestions? (Note: I’m back into full-on research mode as I would love to get this ordered today or tomorrow!)

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Dark Bean (Coffee Espresso) (FA) (I generally use it at lower % than the statistics indicate on that page) :slightly_smiling:


FA’s Espresso is used a lot around here. But, I make my own Coffee flavoring. Several of us do.
If you decide to make your own, this post is what I mimmicked and it turned out GREAT:


Hmmm… after seeing that, I may just have to remove buying a coffee flavor and save a couple $! I’ve always got at least an espresso roast and something else around (I worked in various coffee shops for ~10 years).

P.S.: Not sure you’ve played with it yet, but I imagine a coarse (french-press style) grind would pull a ton of the flavor out.

Like I said: This forum is awesome!

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YEs… a french=press would work great I imagine. I don’t have one, but it’s on my long list. lol

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Oh: I was just saying to use a coarse grind on the coffee… but I think you may be on to something. I’ll certainly let you know how that little experiment goes!


Oh… yes, I do use a Course ground coffee normally. I buy a special blend course ground Texas Pecan that I love. :slightly_smiling:

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I will say that it is ok to start with one vendor. You may find down the road you will want a second vendor to round out your primary flavor. My best example is strawberry. I love strawberry FA and ripe strawberry tfa together. By themselves good, together they are much better.

I know you want to stay away from fruits. Okie dokie. But think of getting an orange, a lemon, or a cherry flavor. Think of using zest in a recpie. Tobacco+chocolate+Vanilla+orange zest. Yum.

You may also like a liquor flavoring. My two I have used is FA whiskey and FA Jamaican rum. Both dark and rich.


Here’s what I have sitting in my cart at ecigexpress.


Toasted Almond-Capella -4
Vanilla Custard-Capella-4
Acetyl pyrazine-TPA-10
Black Honey Tobac-TPA-10
Bourbon (vanilla bourbon)-FlavorArt-10
Brown Sugar-TPA-10
Caramel (Original)-TPA-10
Caramel Candy-TPA-10
Graham Cracker (clear)-TPA-10
Hazel Grove-FlavorArt-10
RY4 Double-TPA-10
Booster (Tiramisu)-FlavorArt-10
Vanilla Bean Ice Cream-TPA-10
Yellow Cake-FlavorWest -10
Bavarian Creme-TPA-30
Butterscotch-FlavorWest -30
Dulce de Leche-TPA-30

I’m going to go cook some dinner and “think about it” for a minute (and hopefully gain some insight from you good people). I’m about maxed out on my budget for this go-round (mostly due to buying a ton of store bought juice lately), but am open to suggestions if you have any.

Thank you all. You’ve been extremely helpful!


Looks like a very good start. The only thing I’d suggest is maybe getting a larger bottle of Marshmallow, as I find it’s used in a LOT of recipes, if only to sweeten and bring flavors together better.

One more thing I would suggest before you pull the trigger… Find some recipes here on ELR that you think you want to make. Compare your list to those recipes to make sure this is the list you want.

You could start by just going to the recipes page, put a MAIN flavor you know you want to work with in the search bar and hit search. When the list comes up, click on the column heading labeled ‘Rating’ so you get the best rated recipes first. Then browse thru that list for a recipe you might want to make and look at the ingredients.

Best advice I ever got about mixing ‘Research and read everything you can before investing more money’

Good luck and HAVE FUN! Looking forward to seeing your newly tested recipes someday.


My faves in no particular order:

FA: Fresh Cream, Custard, Butterscotch, Caramel, Vienna Cream, Madagascar Vanilla, Cookie, Dark Bean Espresso

FW: Yellow Cake, Butter Cream,

Cap: Apple Pie (for crust), Peanut Butter, Vanilla Custard 2

Inawera: Biscuit

TFA: Bavarian Cream, Brown Sugar Extra, RY4, Vanilla Bean Ice Cream,

FE: Lemon

Sucralose (sweetener)


Looks like a good first list. I know budgets are tough when your just getting into DIY. I think it took me two orders (somewhat big) to get to where I needed to be to be happy…but that’s the learning curve which is fine. By the third order I can say I was super excited about my mixes. Don’t forget the unflavored pg & vg & nic (if you are using nic). Also all the measuring devices and mixing stuff.

Lastly, as refered to the above post. Take a look at some of the recipes posted here. Search by your flavors. Maybe see if you can have to purchase to also make 1 or 2 or 3 recipies right out of the box.


I know you stated you have syringes but I would suggest getting a good cheap scale (one that reads down to 0.01g). Most people that have switched over to mixing with weight wonder why they used syringes and pipettes for so long.
Nothing wrong with mixing via drops or ml’s but weight mixing is very nice @BusinessHippieRH


Thank you all. I did end up adding more marshmallow. The original “list” was made by doing pretty much exactly what has been said (searching recipes). I have to say though, the sheer amount of stuff that people have come up with on this site is impressive, and there’s no way I’ve seen it all yet!

I already got all of the mixing stuff (syringes, needles, and some larger bottles) when I did my latest order of wire/coils and I’ve been hoarding bottles with the idea of doing this for a few weeks. As far as nic, PG, and VG: this time I just bought it all from nudenicotine. I’m sure I’ll source the PG/VG and mixing supplies elsewhere next time, but for now: I wanted to try and spend my time researching flavors more than sourcing other stuff!

I’m sure this will be a learning process, and that more $ will go into it, but I have to say: I did the quick math and the comparison is silly. All of my local B&Ms (Raleigh, NC) charge ~$20/30mL compared to ~$1 and dropping as you figure out what you need and buy in bulk. I have a feeling in a few months, I’ll be kicking myself for not doing this sooner!

Thanks again!


FWIW 30 ml is costing me @ 1.05 (Cutwood Unicorn Milk) - 2.55 (my version of Milk and Honey) not including the bottle I’m putting it in, that is including PG/VG/Nic (nic at 9mg (which is higher than many people use)). Plastic 30ml dropper bottles run me around .65 (but if I’m mixing the same juice as what was in it before I reuse that bottle after cleaning it).

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