Home » A+E » Behind the smoke and mirrors of vaping

Behind the smoke and mirrors of vaping

Please follow and like us:
Facebook
Google+
Twitter
Cody Byrd, a third-year in business and marketing, vapes at Vaporfi, 2471 N. High St, his place of employment. Credit: Hannah Herner | Assistant Arts&Life Editor

Cody Byrd, a third-year in business and marketing, vapes at Vaporfi, 2471 N. High St, his place of employment. Credit: Hannah Herner | Assistant Arts&Life Editor

In 2014, Ohio State initiated its tobacco-free policy on campus. According to a press release, the goal of the policy is “to support individuals to be tobacco free (and) achieve their highest state of health.” The trend of vaping is included in the ban, but some see it as a better alternative.

Vaping involves using a vaporizer, which can take multiple shapes and is sometimes referred to as an e-cigarette. The device converts a liquid containing varying nicotine and flavoring levels into vapor. Students are turning to vaping to curb their cravings for traditional tobacco products, and it can become a hobby or even a lifestyle for some.

Mark Bardford, manager at Crawford & Masters boutique vapors at 1177 N. High St., said that the majority of the customers he sees have the intention of quitting smoking through vaping, a sentiment that was echoed by Amanda Verbsky, district manager for Vaporfi, which has a location at 2471 N. High St.

Verbsky used vaping to help her quit smoking, and about 80 percent of her customers are trying to do the same. She said it started as a casual cigarette here and there and grew into a pack-a-day addiction.  

“When I got the job with Vaporfi, I did not think I would quit smoking,” Verbsky said. “Within three weeks of me working here, I had completely quit smoking.”

Steven Workman, a third-year in strategic communication, said that vaping helped him quit using smokeless tobacco.

“It was pretty much just to help me to quit using smokeless tobacco, and it’s done that. I pretty much just vape now,” he said.

Bardford had quit smoking 20 years prior, and he now vapes with no nicotine just so he can try the flavors. He added that he believes vaping is less harmful than cigarettes in cutting out some of the harmful tars and ingredients, but it can be counter-intuitive if the user smokes with the vaporizer more often than he or she would a traditional cigarette.

“A lot of people will get on these and they’ll start hitting these even more than they did a cigarette because you have the flavor aspect, too,” Bardford said.

A vape pen also known as an E-cigarette. Credit: Samantha Hollingshead | Photo Editor

A vape pen also known as an E-cigarette. Credit: Samantha Hollingshead | Photo Editor

Bardford emphasized that while vaping can help make the quitting process easier, the user still needs willpower to be successful.  

“These aren’t a total cure to it; they take away the need for nicotine and allow you to come down slowly off of it, but you have to want to quit,” he said.

Furthermore, Bardford said he would not recommend vaping to people who have never smoked.

“We get a lot of young people in that want to get into it and they’ve never smoked or anything. I tell them right up front, ‘Hey if you haven’t been smoking, don’t start.’ They don’t understand how addictive nicotine can be, so we try to discourage them,” he said.

In reality, not all vaporizer users have the goal of quitting smoking.   

“I even have customers that just use it for anxiety. The deep breathing just helps them calm down,” Verbsky said.   

In building vaping devices and experimenting with liquids, it can also be considered a hobby, or even more than that.  

“Is it a lifestyle? Is OSU football a lifestyle? Same thing. It’s become a hobby with a lot of people,” Bardford said.

Verbsky said there is a community that has formed around vaping, and people enjoy experimenting with the mechanical aspects of the vaporizers, changing up the coils that heat up the liquid, turning it to vapor.

“You’ll see whole friendships formed on people building coils and trying out different wires and that. It’s really taken on this whole new subculture,” she said.

A display of vaping liquids at Crawford & Masters, 1177 N. High St. Credit: Hannah Herner | Assistant Arts&Life Editor

A display of vaping liquids at Crawford & Masters, 1177 N. High St. Credit: Hannah Herner | Assistant Arts&Life Editor

But the newly formed community comes with its share of criticism.

Bardford said he believes that stigma lies in the nicotine in the vape because it is a derivative of tobacco.

“People see it, they equate it with a cigarette immediately,” he said.  

Verbsky emphasized the importance of asking the owners of an establishment before vaping inside, and Bardford echoed the sentiment.  

“Some of the community isn’t too great at relaying their feelings about vaping. They’re blowing clouds in places they shouldn’t, they’re being rude about it,” Bardford said.

That is the reason why Workman said he does not use his vaporizer on campus.

“I try not to blow it in people’s faces, and that’s the reason I don’t do it on campus. It’s kind of a politeness thing, too. I guess I wouldn’t want cigarette smokers to smoke around me, so I just try to respect that,” he said.

But Verbsky insisted that the vapor exhaled does not have an adverse affect on people nearby.

“There is no second-hand absorption of even the nicotine. By the time you exhale the water vapor, it dissipates into the air and it’s gone,” she said.

She added that she believes a lot of the criticism comes from people not being familiar with vaping, and its position as an alternative to smoking is most important.

“A lot of people just don’t know what it is,” Verbsky said. “At the end of the day, I really see it as a better alternative to cigarettes or chewing or any of those other things that people have started on.”

15 comments

  1. I am a smoker, and I HATE being around people that use these things. The smoke is 20 times more than what comes out of a cigarette smoker. I was at an outside concert last year and the people vaping were rude and obnoxious. They blow this smoke wherever they want and it stinks. Maybe I don’t want to be around someone blowing smoke that smells like peppermint? This trend is getting ridiculous and I wish it would go away.

  2. Vaping is even worse than cigarettes! Studies have shown how harmful the chemicals are and the second hand smoke is bad for people too. Even this article admits says some people vape more than they would smoke a cigarette! It’s a bad trend and its crazy to me that people do this but would never smoke. Name one thing that is good for you that you can smoke?

    • Tar kills! Nicotine does not cause cancer. How about smoked meats? The smoke touches the meat and you eat it thus eating the combusted material. Do you even know what combustion is? Do you drive an automobile with an engine that burns fuel? Do you know that the exaust is released into the air? You breathe chemicals. Riding a bicycle is healthier. Would you then say riding a bicycle is worse that driving an automobile? If you know anything about the two the answer is no. You don’t know anything about vaping. Please stifle yourself in the future. Thank in advanced!

    • Vaping is even worse than cigarettes? How did you come to this conclusion? Take a look at the LONG LIST of studies (done by various organizations) over the past few years:

      http://www.cigbuyer.com/studies/

      I don’t think anyone is saying that vaping is 100% safe, but study after study shows that it’s much safer than smoking traditional cigarettes. It has zero tar and significantly less toxic chemicals. You won’t hear this talked about in media, but it’s a fact! Some research has even concluded that you’re at more risk by breathing in big city air.

      A few studies have reported finding high levels of one chemical, formaldehyde, but experts have rejected those results because the findings didn’t take into account real-world conditions (e-cigarettes were fired until the coils burned – which would never actually occur because a user would stop using the device immediately due to the horrible taste). And research looking at the effect of “second-hand vapor” has shown that it has zero impact on bystanders.

      It’s a shame that the media doesn’t talk about all of the positive studies and how vaping can actually help people quit smoking and reduce their risk. It’s the negative, inaccurate findings that grab the headlines, and average, uneducated consumers don’t get all the facts…

  3. Note to the uneducated: it technically isn’t “smoke” since there’s no combustion involved.

    Also, wow, do people *hate* new things.

    • Yes, people can HATE new things, and for your information, this isn’t NEW. It’s been around for a few years now. And I don’t care if it’s smoke or not, it still is rude to blow it in people’s space’s and instead of a steady stream, it’s like a giant cloud.

  4. PG (Propylene Glycol), VG (Vegatable Glycerin), Nicotine, at least we know whats in these things, although i do agree that blowing smoke/non-smoke in a persons personal space is rude, eliquids are cheaper, healthier and there is nothing harmful in them as many many studies have show.

  5. Learn how to Quit Smoking|stop smoking – not just for a short while, but infact “FOR LIFE” – from the comfort of your own home. So now throw out the patches, gum, pills and spay because there is an even easier way. This system doesn’t just offer a 50-50% success rate it has an amazing 96% success rate Fully Guaranteed. Don’t let one smoke take 5-20 minutes off your life again.Discover How to Quit Smoking in as Little as 7 Days Even if You’ve been a Chain Smoker for the Past 20 Years with No Relapses—http://bit.ly/20ZM0Dc

  6. “Vaping & smoking both are different. Smoking is more harmful compare to vaping. Vaping helps to quit the bad habits of smoking without burning tobacco. smoking is totally depended on the tobacco or nicotine but vaping is not depend on that. young people used a vape pen especially the Dr. Dabber’s Vaporizer Pen. So the Dr Dabber’s Vaporizer Pen is looking stylish & more attractive vape pen for creating lifestyle. So many smokers used the Dr Dabber’s Vaporizer Pen.” For more details about vaping or vape pen view at: https://goo.gl/Gpg7O3

  7. “Vaping & smoking both are different. Smoking is more harmful compare to vaping. Vaping helps to quit the bad habits of smoking without burning tobacco. smoking is totally depended on the tobacco or nicotine but vaping is not depend on that. young people used a vape pen especially the Dr. Dabber’s Vaporizer Pen. So the Dr Dabber’s Vaporizer Pen is looking stylish & more attractive vape pen for creating lifestyle. So many smokers used the Dr Dabber’s Vaporizer Pen.” For more details about vaping or vape pen view at: https://goo.gl/Gpg7O3

  8. Haters gonna hate

    So you would rather it be cigarette smoke in your “personal space” while in public places rather than vapor? Nothing’s ever good enough is it?

  9. I know a couple of friends who used to smoke cigarettes and used vapes to quit. I also know people who have never smoked a cigarette that vape whenever they get the chance. I’ve seen both sides of the coin in this situation, and while I can see why some people might not like those who vape, I do think it’s a useful tool for those who want to quit. Thanks for sharing this insightful article.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.