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If you think vaping is a 21st century invention, think again. From as far back as the early 1900s canny inventors toyed with designs for e-cigarettes. Although most of these early designs didn’t make it past the prototype stage the question that begs asking is, just how long have vapes been around, and who were the pioneers that paved the way for the modern age of vaping?
THE ORIGINS OF E-CIGARETTES: HOW LONG HAS VAPING BEEN ARROUND?
The first known e-cigarette design is credited to New Yorker Joseph Robinson, who filed a patent for one in 1927. Robinson’s dream – that’s all it was because his device was never actually made – was to create a device patients could use to inhale ‘medicinal compounds’ without the risk of being burnt in the process.
Fast forward to the 1960s and a valiant effort on the part of another American, Herbert Gilbert who, concerned about the potential health problems associated with smoking, filed a patent for his own smokeless non-tobacco electronic device. Sadly for Gilbert there was simply no market for e-cigarettes in an era when cigarette smoking was very much in vogue, and his design too, crashed and burned. (Pun intended.)
All was quiet on the e-cig front until 1979 when Phil Ray and Dr Norman Jacobson, a computer boffin and medical doctor respectively, joined forces to conduct the first formal research into nicotine delivery systems. The fruits of their efforts were an inherently glitchy device that didn’t make it into production, but the duo is credited with coining the term ‘vape’, having described the use of their device as ‘vaping’ and its intended users as ‘vapers’.
THE INVENTOR OF THE MODERN E-CIGARETTE
Forays into e-cigarette design limped along throughout the 1980s and 1990s giving rise to numerous designs for vaporisers and nicotine inhalation devices. None of these was materially similar to the modern e-cigarette, and none made it to market until the Ruyan arrived on the scene in 2003 and kick-started the vaping revolution.
THE FIRST COMMERCIAL E-CIGARETTE
The turning point in the history of e-cigarettes took place when Chinese pharmacist and self-confessed three-pack-a-day smoker Hon Lik created the first commercially successful electronic cigarette, a cigalike called the Ruyan.
Hon’s father’s death from lung cancer, coupled with his own heavy smoking habit prompted him to invent a cigarette alternative that uses vapour to emulate smoke and is potentially less harmful than smoking combustible cigarettes. The Ruyan worked by heating a liquid form of nicotine creating a vapour for inhalation. It was launched to an enthusiastic Chinese public and to neighbouring countries in the early 2000s before being rolled out to Europe and the United States by 2007. The age of modern e-cigarette had begun.
THE EARLY ADOPTION AND POPULARISATION OF E-CIGARETTES
Vaping has come a long way since Joseph Robinson walked into the patent office back in 1927, but the path to popularity has been a tough one. When e-cigarettes were finally launched commercially there was a great deal of scepticism around them. What is an electronic cigarette? Is it a fad? Is a vape dangerous to use?
The initial distrust didn’t last for long though because when weighed against the clear dangers of smoking users soon realised that vaping is a potentially healthier alternative. This statement is confirmed by the National Health Service in the UK, which maintains that vaping is significantly less risky than smoking cigarettes. Nicotine may be addictive, and vaping isn’t risk-free, but most of the dangers of smoking are linked to the side-effects of combustion.
THE INFLUENCE OF THE VAPING COMMUNITY
As the popularity of vaping continued to grow, a sense of shared identity and appreciation emerged among vapers. Forums, blogs and YouTube channels dedicated to vaping began to pop up, creating a platform for vaping fans to share their vaping stories, tips, tricks and reviews.
EXPANSION AND INNOVATION IN THE E-CIGARETTE INDUSTRY
Vaping has come a long way since Joseph Robinson walked into the patent office back in 1927 and thanks to the sophisticated products on the market today lighting up is no longer the only option for adult nicotine users.
Vuse*, which has a history all of its own, is one of the most successful vape brands on the market. Our journey began in 2013 driven by the desire mission to develop top-quality vaping devices and flavours that will appeal to even the most discerning nicotine users.
Consumers are at the heart of product development, which is why all Vuse products offer adult nicotine users the highest quality, most technologically advanced vapes and e-liquids that are also stylish, portable and easy to use. We believe in rigorous testing, which is why all our products are tested for 1000 hours by a team of 50 scientists, before we’re happy to sell them to you.
The Vuse range of slim, stylish vapes includes rechargeable, refillable, customisable Vuse pens and epod flavours, as well as the disposable Vuse Go, which comes fully charged and prefilled with one of nine delicious flavours.
It’s been almost 20 years since the launch of the first e-cig, and in that time vaping has changed the face of nicotine consumption across the globe. The superiority of technologically advanced vapes like Vuse mean there really isn’t an excuse not to swap your smokes for an e-cig.
So whether you’re a seasoned vaper or a newbie, it’s time to make the switch to Vuse. Head to your nearest Vuse store today or go online to order an elegant starter kit. You won’t look back.
* This product is not risk-free and contains nicotine, an addictive substance. [plus rest of that disclaimer].