Sweeteners and Additives

I came across this Blog on ECF. It sounds like some very good advice. Please reply if you have any thoughts about his blog.

ECF DIY E-Liquid Guru

Sweetening and additives

Many have asked if there is a rule of thumb when it comes to this subject. Well the simple answer is there are none.

Oh yes there is one rule of thumb. “Add nothing to the mix until you’ve steeped and tasted it”.

The following is an explanation of additives and sweetening. It is my personal opinion and should be taken as such.

Vinegar and Lemon

Vinegar is used to perk up tobacco flavors. I usually find people adding this when in fact the problem was they just didn’t add enough tobacco flavor the first time and the flavor faded after it steeped. It can some times blend tobacco flavors when using more then one type of tobacco but there are better additives to blend such as FS’s Vape wizard. Vinegar is typically used at 1 drop per 5ml. It’s been my experience that it will make flavors pop at first but then the flavor fades again over a few days.

Lemon juice is used to perk up fruit and candy mixes and the same can be said for that as well. Make sure you add the correct amount of flavor and let it steep first before making any adjustments. Also the lack of flavor could also be caused by over flavoring which will lead to a absents of flavor. Lemon Juice is typically used at 1 drop per 5ml. It’s been my experience that it will make flavors pop at first but then the flavor fades again over a few days

Think of vinegar and lemon juice as a tool of last resort. Because the problem is most likely a mistake you made along the way in your mix.
A better use for the too is to use it to try to salvage an old juice that has already faded to a point of no taste at all.

What exactly is sweetener?

Humm good question.

EM is not really a sweetener it changes the chemical composition of the mix and changes the perception of the way your taste buds sense flavor. EM is used more to thicken, give body and wetness to a mix as well as smooth out ruff edges. It may give already sweet flavoring a slight perception of more sweetness but will also tend to mute the actual flavor. Typical usage is .5 - 1%. I personally use no more then .5%

Sucarlose is a splenda type sweetener and small amounts will add lots and lots of sweetness so you need to be careful with percentages. This is a good choice for your candies, desert, fruit and creamy mixes. This can be found in 5 or 10% premixed solutions and should be used starting at .5% - 2%. Remember using very little gives a lot of sweetness.

I’m nuts about nuttyness

Acetyl Pyrazine (AP)

taste description: Roasted, nutty, bready and yeasty, with popcorn and corn chip nuances
good for graham gracker flavors

This is a good choice for your tobacco nuttyness such as found in your 555, Highway, T5 mixes or any mix in need of a nuttyness.

Caution should be used as this is a very potent flavor molecule.

1 - 2% will give you a nice nutty flavor
2.5 - 3% will give you a corn chip taste
3 - 5% will give you a burnt corn chip flavor.

Adding thickness and body to a mix

To add thickness and body to a mix I use marshmallo flavoring or EM. I use just a tiny amount to give it a thickness and body and not to add an actual marshmallo or a sweet taste. I recommend no more then .5% (that’s point five percent)

Wetting or adding moisture

To help minimize the drying effect and throat irritation that vaping causes add 4 - 6% of .09 saline solution or distilled water to your mix… The higher the VG content the more you will want to add. Saline tends to give a softer wetter taste then distilled water but some have said that they can taste the salt. I myself have not noticed a salty taste in my mixes. Normally adding saline or DW to high VG mixes will thin the mix allowing the juice to better wick eliminating dry hits and add the benefit of a less harsh and a wetter vape.


The recommend percentages are a baseline to start with. “TASTE IS VERY SUBJECTIVE” So let your taste buds be your guide. Always start with the lowest recommended amount, Steep, taste then adjust.

My other vaping blogs can be seen at:

dannyv45’s blog | E-Cigarette Forum

Last edited: May 10, 2015


I also feel neither of these are at all necessary if you take the time to nail down the exact percentages. With many flavorings rounding out to .5% or 1% is fine but there are certain flavorings where a .1% difference will greatly affect the end result, some FA, many INW and all MF flavorings for example. Even some TFA, CAP flavorings fall in this group.

Honestly i have never found a reason to use either of the aforementioned additives, im sure they have their uses but not for me.

AP in the 2.5-3% range and corn chip flavor… Interesting. I need me some Frosted Flakes juice. I have always had trouble vaping anything with too much AP without a very long curing process but out of desperation i will have to try this.

Marshmallow will help smooth out a harsh mix too.

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AP is the only one of these additives I use, and it’s less than 1%.

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Same here, it just seems crazy to use it in such a high percentage but i am really desperate for some Frosted Flakes. I generally use it by the drop/10ml.

Very few of my mixes have MM or EM and most of them are my older recipes. Peaches & Cream and Gas Station Chocolate Donut are the only two where i continue to use either. Peaches & Cream is one of my wifes favorites so im not allowed to change it and GSCD needs the sweet because gas station donuts are disgustingly/deliciously sweet, hehe.

EM, or just Maltol, and Sucralose are already in some of the flavorings that we use.

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As he said in the post… If you get your percentages right you probably don’t need them. In my early days I used them just because I had them.

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I completely agree.