Salt Nic vs Freebase Nicotine, What Is The Difference?

Salt Nic vs Freebase Nicotine, What Is The Difference?

Jan 12, 2023Ryan Mumpower
Have you gone to your local smoke shop needing a refill on your E-juice and the employee behind the counter asks if you are looking for Freebase or Salt? What is Freebase or salt? How are they different? All your questions will be answered in this article as we go over these two different kinds of nicotine and how they differ in their respective fields.


Freebase nicotine is the most common E-juice variety and the first of its kind to hit retail locations. What is Freebase nicotine? First originating in the 60s by Phillip Morris International researching a way to make their product more enjoyable for consumers. After this, the influx of alternative products such as nicotine gum swept the market. Its potency without the need to increase dosage led to its popularity amongst the vaping community.

Freebase Vape juice is the name for E-Liquid which carries a milligram strength below 20mg. This doesn’t mean that it is a weak strength, put simply this supplies a different, less harsh feel toward the lungs and throat. Often those taking the first steps into vaping will go for this type of juice to its lower strength. Freebase comes in a variety of mg (milligram) strengths, but the most seen in stores will be, 0mg, 3mg, 6mg, and 12mg. Some specialty shops may have the licensing to mix their own batches of vape juice, this is referred to as “In-house” juice. However, as we see the market progress toward disposable devices featuring their higher-strength counterparts, we have seen a decreased usage of Freebase nicotine.


Salts are not new; they have been on the market available for a few years. It is important to note that although “salt” is in the name, this will have zero effect on your sodium levels. Thanks to JUUL, which is one of the largest manufacturers responsible for popularizing Salt nic, skyrocketed the use of the product in America and in only a few years took over the market for easy-to-use vape devices. Most commonly found in disposable vapes such as Elf Bars or Packwoods disposables, salt nic contains a higher dosage of nicotine at the cost of longevity.

Nicotine Salts occur naturally in the tobacco plant, however, in this unmodified state, the potency is lesser than that of Freebase nicotine. This is due to the weak base seeking out protons to be ionized, and since ions cannot move through the human cell membranes with ease it presents a problem reaching the nicotine receptors. With a little chemical tweaking this problem is fixed and gives Salt Nic a much stronger feel compared to its counterpart. Salt Nicotine is any milligram above 20mg.

Which one is for you?

Questions to ask yourself when deciding which one is the right one for you include:

Are you trying to quit smoking cigarettes?
Have you ever experienced a vape?
Is it expensive?

When trying to switch from traditional smoking to vaping the similarities are few in nature. They both contain nicotine however the feeling of dry smoke to a vapor is extremely different and some find it uncomfortable or just too different. When trying an E-cigarette for the first time it’s best to go in without expectations of a brand-new easy experience. Yes, this can be an expensive habit at first but leads to being less expensive over time than the traditional method of smoking.

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