This list of sweeteners, sours, and salts is constantly being updated as we are always requested information on ingredients by individuals on an almost daily basis 🙂 If you have an ingredient you would like to see added to this list, get in touch with us!
Ethyl Maltol (EM) – Common confectionary sweetner used in eliquids to round out harsh upper notes and sweeten sour/bitter flavors. EM can be purchased as crystals or fine powder, but is recommended to be solvated in powder form for increased surface area. Solutions of EM are commonly found at between 2.5-10% depending on the carrier solvent. PG can attain a max solubility of ~100mg/mL (10% solution) of EM, while VG can only obtain ~55mg/mL. However, ethyl alcohol is suitable for very saturated solutions of ~150mg/mL and recommended for maximum EM solubility as a carrier solvent. Recommended dilutions for final end concentrations of EM in eliquid are ~1-5mg/mL (0.1-0.5%) to start, of course adjusting for taste preference. Remember EM doesn’t magically make eliquids ‘pop,’ flavor art takes research!
Sucralose – common sweetener composed of fructose and glucose sugars. Much heavier of a ‘sweet’ flavor that ethyl maltol, but ideal for fruit flavors needing a sweetness boost. Not as commonly seen as a sweetener predissolved in PG, VG, or ethyl alcohol for eliquids on the open market, but is widely used by a variety of vendors. Targets of ~1-5mg/mL are sought in final eliquid concentrations for the sweetness boost. Sucralose can commonly be obtained in food-grade from a variety of different manufacturers. Splenda is a brand-name most households are familiar with – a sucralose-based sweetener.
Raspberry Ketone – The sweeteners keep coming! Raspberry ketone is a subtle tart/sweet note seen in raspberry/blackberry/berry flavors and can be used to supplement the thick sweetness commonly associated with berry flavors. USE LIGHTLY! Commonly sold in 5% solutions (50mg/mL), and recommended for use at between 0.5-2mg/mL.
Citric Acid – One of the more common ingredients used to give eliquids their tart flavor. Citric acid can be obtained as a diluted liquid in many different grades, as a crystalline powder, or from natural sources (think lemon/lime juice!) Stock solutions of citric acid made specifically for vaping are seen as 5-10% solution. However Citric acid is very particular for final concentrations. While in sweet citrus flavors where the overtones do not interfere with the flavor palate, citric acid can be used at 0.2-1%, while with competing flavors, a maximum concentration of 0.1-0.5% is sought.
Malic Acid – The most well-known ‘tart’ener which comprises TFA’s “Sour” and many other branded sour additives. Mixed in similar fashion to citric acid, and can be purchased similarly as a powder, concentrated, or diluted liquid. Nerd fact – the citric acid cycle that occurs in our mitochondria cycles between both the citric and malic acids! Woohoo!
Tartaric Acid – A lesser-known ‘tart’ener, but renown for its ability to mask sweetness at light concentrations. Concentrations of 0.05-0.1% are usually sufficient to calm sweetness from varied blends, but is highly specific to certain flavorings. While tartaric acid is not the active ingredient in FlavourArt’s Magic Mask, we feel that lower concentrations of tartaric acid, if used with complementary acids, can mimic the pH-softening effect of Magic Mask.
Acetic Acid – Acetic acid is the main ingredient in vinegar, commonly seen in the laboratory in pure liquid form as glacial acetic acid (caustic!!!). The forms of acetic acid used in eliquids are mostly that of vinegars, which can be sourced as in an almost infinite amount of preparations. Many exotic flavoring blends get their finishing touches and “pop” from specific vinegars! To list a few: apple cider, coconut, malt, raisin, sugar cane, rice, white, and wine vinegars have been experimented with at one time or another in the Nude Nicotine laboratory.