What are Shortfills?
Shortfill E-Liquids are bottles that have not been completely filled. In doing so, nicotine can be added to the bottle without it overflowing. Shortfill E-Liquids were created as a route around the limit on bottles containing nicotine, which is a maximum of 10ml. Shortfill bottles come in sizes of 50ml, 80ml and 100ml. To make up the standard strength of 3mg is as follows.
Short fill E-Liquids are a recent creation by juice manufacturers, released in response to the Tobacco Products Directive, or TPD. The TPD stipulated that all E-Liquids containing nicotine could only be sold in 10ml bottles.
While the TPD is only technically a set of guidelines, every manufacturer who wishes to release an E-Liquid inside the UK must follow them to bring their product to market. In addition, every product has to be tested for safety before it can be designated fit for sale.
Shortfills were released as a route around the limit on 10ml bottles. Reputable manufacturers will still test their products for safety, but they are not considered to be a ‘tobacco’ product based on their lack of any nicotine.
For an E-Liquid to be a shortfill, they must be 0mg, or Nic Free, and there must be enough room in the bottle for Nicotine Shots to be added.
In general, there three different sizes of shortfill bottles:
60ml Bottles, which are filled with a total of 50ml of E-Liquid
100ml Bottles, which are filled with a total of 80ml of E-Liquid
120ml Bottles, which are filled with a total of 100ml of E-Liquid
Each is filled with Nic Shots of varying strength to make a maximum total nicotine strength of 3mg/ml.
Most Shortfills have a VGPG ratio of 70/30, with a select few being either maximum VG or 50/50.
1 x 10ml 18mg bottle is added to a 50ml Bottle, making a total volume of 60ml.
2 x 10ml 15mg bottles are added to an 80ml Bottle, making a total volume of 100ml.
2 x 10ml 18mg bottles are added to a 100ml Bottle, making a total volume of 120ml.
What's in my E-Liquid?
E-Liquid is made up of two oil bases - Vegetable Glycerin: VG, and Propylene Glycerol: PG. VG is the thicker of the two oils, increasing vapor production. PG is used to help added flavourings and nicotine bind to the E-Liquid. Ratios of VG and PG vary based on your needs. Here are some examples of different ratios:
The most popular ratio for Shortfill E-Liquids. This is the industry standard ratio for ‘shortfills’ (see below). A low amount of PG helps the flavour profile of the E-Liquid when vaporized. The High VG content prevents the E-Liquid from leaking through the holes of the coil. Shortfills are used more commonly in Sub Ohm and DIY atomizers.
Shortfill E-Liquid is more suitable for the large entry holes of Sub Ohm Coils. Shortfill E-Liquids are also commonly mixed to a strength of 0.3% Nicotine (3mg/ml). Any higher strength would require a higher PG content to help bind the additional Nicotine. Fogs Vape recommends a strength of 3mg/ml for any Sub Ohm or DIY Atomizer.
You’ll find 50/50 E-Liquids are most commonly used in E-Liquids containing a Nicotine Strength of 6mg or higher. All Nicotine containing E-Liquids are required to be mixed and sold in 10ml bottles by law. In the UK, this law is known as the Tobacco Products Directive or TPD, of which all or most vaping products fall under.
If you are buying for a Sub Ohm Tank or DIY Atomizer, look for E-Liquid with a 60VG minimum ratio.
If you are buying for a Mouth to Lung Device, Pod Kit or some special types of Sub Ohm coils, look for an E-Liquid with a maximum ratio of 50VG to 50PG. You’ll also be able to tell if the E-Liquid is suitable for those devices if they’re in a 10ml bottle.