[is-gateway name=”HicksNewMedia” id=”INFOtainmentNews”]By now, you’ve probably heard about electronic cigarettes, or e-cigarettes. They started to show up for sale online several years ago, and now are becoming increasingly available offline in convenience stores, drug stores and even some big box stores. So what are these electronic cigarettes and how do they work?

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An electronic cigarette is a battery with a cartridge attached. The battery looks like a cigarette and the cartridge looks like a filter, though sometimes they come in odd colors. Inside the cartridge or attached to it is an atomizer that heats up the liquid in the cartridge to create vapor. You use an electronic cigarette like a real cigarette. When you inhale, the battery is activated, the atomizer is heated, and vapor is produced. Electronic cigarettes are designed to mimic the look and feel of smoking, but without the smoke.

E-cigarette liquid contains propylene glycol, water, flavoring, and in most cases, nicotine. Some brands of liquid contain vegetable glycerin instead of propylene glycol, and some contain a mixture of both. Bottles are marked with the nicotine level or percentage, usually indicated as zero, low, medium or high. Unlike nicotine gums or patches, e-cigarettes don’t require a prescription, and they are the only smoking alternative that lets you have the physical action of smoking.

Reviews

Reviews and personal stories from smokers who have switched to e-cigarettes are overwhelmingly positive. Most critical reviews of are certain brands as compared to other brands, but e-cigarettes in general have proven to be a success with many smokers who are now, former smokers.

Cost

Disposable e-cigarettes range from about $6 to $10 each. A disposable is a good option for trying an e-cigarette, but in the long run, rechargeable e-cigarettes are more cost effective. Rechargeable e-cigarettes usually come in starter kits that can cost anywhere from about $30 to $70 dollars, depending on how many extra components the kit includes. A good starter kit should include at least one battery, a charger, and two cartridges. E-cigarette batteries can be recharged numerous times, and cartridges can be refilled; however, most starter kits do not include refill liquid, so when the cartridges are empty you will need to either buy more cartridges or buy a bottle of liquid to refill the empty cartridges you have. Buying cartridges is easier, but buying liquid and refilling is cheaper in the long run. Nearly all manufacturers of e-cigarettes have websites on which you can purchase liquid, cartridges, replacement batteries, and other accessories like chargers and cases.

Legalities

The vast majority of e-cigarette retailers will not sell e-cigarettes to anyone under 18. E-cigarettes are not regulated by the FDA, nor are they considered tobacco products. They can be purchased by adults online or in stores. They are usually found in the same section of a store where tobacco products are located. E-cigarettes are not legally included in smoking bans, though it is up to individual business owners to decide if they can be used on their property.

E-cigarettes cannot legally be advertised as a smoking cessation product. They are controversial, with some special interest groups suspecting that they may be dangerous.

This article was created by Derek Halberstram, a freelance writer based in Manhattan, New York City, New York. He enjoys writing about health, general wellness tips, nutritional science, the search for the best E Cig, vitamin supplements and other related topics. For E cigarette reviews be sure to check out the resources here.

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What's with These Electronic Cigarettes? 5

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