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June 12, 2020 4 min read

Counterfeit products have been around since the dawn of time.


It’s a shady, underhand way of getting you to part with hard earned cash on a product that is sub standard yet considered the same as the genuine product. Think Rolex watches, Nike or Adidas for example.


It’s no different with E liquid.


Counterfeit E Liquid


Whereas genuine (well established brands like Jungle Juice or Cider Farms) use food grade ingredients that are derived from traceable sources fit for human consumption, counterfeit liquid components will be sourced from an unknown and therefore untrustworthy origin.


You’ll never know for certain what is contained within a counterfeit e liquid. You won’t know the standards of hygiene of those working on it, how it was stored, produced or indeed the condition of the premises it’s being created in.


Genuine, well established manufacturers will ensure their ISO 8 (as an example) labs are meticulously clean, their test facilities being designed to limit contaminants and staff that have extensive knowledge of manufacturing procedures themselves.


Very often chemists with recognised PHD degrees are employed to advise of chemical reactions during the preparation, bottling and storing of the e liquid.


It doesn’t end there!


In the UK, the MHRA (Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency) needs to be shown test results before anything can be released. It incurs additional costs. A cost which clandestine factories are likely to swerve.


How Do I Know If I’ve Purchased A Counterfeit E Liquid?


Generally speaking, the more expensive the juice the better the quality experienced when vaping but much of the time you will need to rely on gut instinct. If it simply doesn’t taste ok, avoid it.


Here are some things to look out for.


  • How much do you know about the brand? Have you heard much about the manufacturer? Has it been pushed on media platforms? Have you read or watched reviews on it?
  • If any of the above complies then there should also be a website to refer back to. If there isn’t, a few alarm bells should be ringing in your head!
  • Has this product taken a significant tumble in price? Very often a “too good to be true” deal means just that! You may want to avoid these kinds of deals.
  • General packaging condition. I’ve been accused of being anal about this with some of my written reviews. I don’t care! Presentation is everything. A creased bottle label can indicate a product that has been rushed off the production line.
  • Check the colour of your e liquid. If there’s no nicotine included the juice should be relatively clear in appearance and darker with the inclusion of nicotine.
  • This one’s another annoyance for me during a written review. Does the bottle contain safety warnings? Is the legal hazard marking present? Is the bottle top tamper proof? Is the use by date displayed? Needless to say I will knock down points before even testing the juice!
  • If the product has been manufactured in the EU there should be an EC-ID code.


Some of the things to look out for on a genuine e liquid bottle include:


  • The presence of batch numbers. They can be found on the bottle, the external packaging or around the plastic tamper proof seal.
  • There should always be a tamper proof seal in evidence. You must have to press down before unscrewing in the same way as you would for pill bottles, for example.
  • Some, but not all manufacturers will include a heat shrink wrap around the bottle that reaches to just above the tamper proof seal. I am very much a fan of this type of packaging.


Some Closing Notes.


We don’t actually need a PHD in mixology or the study of molecular activity to understand a few basic truths - it’s common sense when we break it down.


The test labs of genuine e liquid manufacturers are meticulously clean and tidy as we noted above. Think about the effects of a contaminant, a substance, a piece of debris being allowed to enter during the mixing procedure..


This is where the real chemical reactions begin. In a negative way. They trigger the creation of new components that you really shouldn’t be vaping.


Since we know that vaping is highly effective at allowing nicotine into the bloodstream, you could potentially be in for a world of hurt should these unwanted components do the same!


These “fly by night” manufacturers are only in it for your money. There’s little or no thought to the damage they are doing to genuine law abiding businesses - in fact it’s extremely damaging to their livelihood. That’s one very important aspect. Another is the potential damage they can do to the vaping industry in general. We’ve only got to look across the pond to see what happens (in a very short period of time) when illicit substances are included in e liquid.


Remember, a genuine company will never tire over the number of questions you throw their way. They know that not only are you entitled to ask, but they will have the confidence to answer each and every one of them.


The best advice is to stick with reputable companies. In closing, the creators of Cider Farms didn’t just become award winners overnight. It took time utilising all the finer details needed to ensure not only a top quality e liquid but an e liquid you know you can feel safe vaping.

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