This is a question we are asked quite often. Steeping involves letting an e-liquid age to allow the flavors to mix, blend, ripen and mature, much like a fine wine gets better with time.
While some vapers believe steeping to be a myth, in our experience there really is something to it. You may have noticed that sometimes you will get a new e-liquid in the mail fresh from the manufacturer and you just don't particularly care for it. You may have tossed it aside, deciding you'll keep it around just in case you ever get desperate. But then that day comes when you are out of all other e-juices and you finally reach for that bottle again and lo and behold, you've suddenly found your new all day vape! That is the magic of steeping.
Steeping will not magically transform a flavor that you just don't care for, but it will enrich and deepen one that you love or improve a flavor from good to great. The balance of flavors in an e-liquid can also change over time, making one taste come to the front while another becomes more delicate. Steeping generally makes a flavor richer, deeper, more luscious. It can smooth over the rough edges on a young e-liquid, maturing it to become all it can be. The difference can be subtle, but worth it!
Follow these steeping tips & tricks for maximum benefit:
1. In our experience, 100% VG e-liquids (like the juices Kai's Virgin Vapor makes) will need more steeping time than a PG/VG mix. The reason is that propylene glycol is a better flavor carrier than VG. So when trying out a 100% VG e-liquid blend for the first time, consider giving it a bit of extra time to "cure."
2. Steeping time can last anywhere from one day up to three or more weeks for maximum flavor richness. It's really a personal choice and based on trial and error rather than a magic number. Steeping produces a continuum of flavor deepening so at what point along that spectrum hits the sweet spot for you is something only you can decide for yourself.
3. Steeping seems to be sped up by steeping in a smaller vessel. That's why a smaller e-liquid bottle may seem to improve faster. In fact, you can even steep in an e-liquid tank by just filling it and setting it aside for a few days. If you're in a hurry to cure your e-liquid, transfer it to a smaller container.
4. Always make sure you leave your e-liquids in a cool, dark place to steep. Direct sunlight and heat can also change your e-liquid's taste--just generally not for the better!
5. In most cases you will want to steep with your e-liquid bottle's cap in place but occasionally, you may consider steeping with the cap off to allow certain compounds to evaporate and to let the e-liquid breathe. If you try this method, be sure to place your e-liquid out of reach of children and pets and place it somewhere it won't be contaminated by dust or critters. The top shelf of a high cupboard might be a good place as long as you can see it well enough to retrieve it without knocking it over.
To steep or not to steep is really a personal choice. Most of our flavors taste good right out of the box. If you like the way a flavor tastes, go ahead and use it! But if you can give it a little time, it might just get even better!