Thick Cloud Archive:
A stoner’s guide to understanding all things vape
Since the late 2000s, the cannabis industry has grown to heights once deemed unimaginable. The industry has grossed hundreds of millions, nearly hundreds of billions across the nation. This is thanks to the increased accessibility to cannabis and cannabis-related products. While some consumers prefer traditional cannabis flowers, others indulge in cannabis concentrates. Luckily, technology has created innovative methods to consume all types of cannabis and cannabinoids. Thanks to vaporizers and the popularity of vaping, cannabis companies have provided patients and recreational consumers something different from combustible forms of consuming cannabis. How did vaping get this big?
The History of vaping and vaporizers
Contrary to popular belief, vaporizing and vaping is a relatively new form of consuming cannabis and cannabinoids. When examining its history, vaping and vaporizers were not ‘a thing’ until the mid-2000. Tobacco companies were attempting to combat the overwhelming anti-tobacco advocates such as the Truth campaign while offering a ‘healthy alternative’ to traditional cigarettes. This saw a rise of e-cigarettes offered by popular tobacco brands such as Blu and Marlboro. The former is a type of recyclable vaporizer that could provide consumers with the ‘ideal’ amount of tobacco, nicotine, or a lack thereof. E-cigarettes utilized the futurism of Y2K to promote their products, deeming electronic cigarettes the future of smoking.
A decade later, tobacco companies would attempt another marketing campaign aimed at young adult smokers with vaporizers and vape cartridges such as Juul and Mr. Fog. Using vibrant colors and kid-friendly flavors such as mango and passion fruit, vaping reached new heights the original e-cigarette could not. Although these early vaporizers were designed for tobacco smokers, the cannabis industry would soon catch on to ensure cannabis consumers could benefit from the removal of carcinogens via vaporization.
How do vaporizers and vape carts work?
Vaporizers are not as complex as they may appear. Vaporizers utilize a battery and an atomizer. The latter is a thermal device that will utilize a coil (and sometimes a ‘wick’) to heat a tank. The tank often is made of durable glass and contains the desired cannabis concentrate or cannabinoid (i.e., terp sauce.) Some tanks are refillable, but most are recyclable. A tank may also be designed to utilize dry cannabis flowers instead of traditional liquids. Most modern vaporizers allow the user to set the desired temperature for their vaping experience. This is tantamount to vaping cannabis. Some cannabinoids such as CBD and THC are only activated at specific temperatures and degrade at improper ones. This allows the consumer to tailor their vaping experience and consume the unique cannabinoids or terpene profile for them.
As aforementioned, vaporizers can be equipped to vaporize dry cannabis flowers directly. However, most vaporizer supplements are available in what are known as cartridges. These ‘vape carts’ are pre-packed cannabis concentrates or cannabinoids that are immediately ready for use with most vaporizers. The level of convenience offered by vaporizers and vape carts allowed the phenomenon to continue to soar to new heights. Well, that and big smoke clouds.
Blowing O’s until infinity
Undoubtedly, vaporizers and vape carts saw a severe spike in popularity in the early 2010s thanks to vape videos on social media. With the rise of micro-media platforms such as the now-defunct Vine and Snapchat, social media influencers began posting and sharing vape content. These videos often featured music with the participant performing ‘vape tricks.’ 9 times out of 10, the poster would showcase their ability to huff thick vape clouds. And like that, the rest was history. Vaping continues to be as popular as it was a decade ago. Despite the tobacco industry muddying up the concept of vaping, patients and consumers of cannabis via vaping can expect vaping only to become more innovative in the years to come.