SMOKO Vape Pod Starter Kit and Pods
Supplied by SMOKO for review
£19.99 including 3 free pods
SMOKO have been around since 2012 and focus 100% in helping people quit smoking and to stay off them, they are one of the few British companies thriving in this very competitive market. We were sent their latest Vape Pod Starter Kit along with a few flavours to test out.
As far as starter kits go, the Vape Pod is as simple as it gets and requires next to no vaping knowledge and experience. They are designed to be vaped pretty much instantly due to the pre-filled flavoured pods.
There is just two components; the battery body and a pod that inserts into it. The battery is rechargeable so the only consumables are the actual pre-filled pods which hold 2ml of flavoured eliquid.
The battery starter kit comes in a rather cool hinged metal tin which has the actual battery, a little USB-C cable for charging and instructions.
(You can also buy the battery without the cable and boxed in cardboard)
The kit isn’t quite a complete starter kit as you will need to purchase pre-filled pods along with it, SMOKO do have a deal that include a 3 pack of pods for £19.99 so make sure you select that.
The battery comes with a partial charge and is enough to get you started right out of the tin. The pods are ready to vape right out of the packet so you can get started straight away, certainly faster than it takes to roll-up a ciggie or open a new packet.
The prefilled pods come in packs of 3 and hold 2ml of e-liquid each. There’s a selection of different flavours, but it might be best to start off with the tobacco ones when you first begin as it should feel similar to ciggies, ideally grab a different flavour to try once you get used to it as part of the pleasure of vaping is the flavours.
Each pod comes in a little tear open packet which is hygienic and there are two protective bungs to keep the e-liquid fresh. They also come in handy if you need to store the pods. Once removed, the pods simply slip into the battery and are held in place by magnets.
Once fitted, it is ready to vape instantly, there’s no need to power on the device or anything. To vape you simply need to draw like you would a cigarette and it automatically vapes, it might feel a little alien at the time and you might even cough as your body doesn’t recognise it so take small draws to start off with, this is totally normal and soon goes. Remember the first time you ever smoked a ciggie? More than likely you coughed then so treat it as the same, trust me you soon get used to it.
The device itself is really compact and lightweight, there’s an LED light positioned inside the ‘O’ of the logo which lights up while vaping and indicates the battery level, GREEN is full charge so you get full power, BLUE is Medium and you might notice the vape become less intense as the battery drains, RED means it is time to recharge.
A handy tip for keeping your battery charged is to use a mobile phone power bank occasionally during the day, carry your cable with you as a lot of cafés etc. have USB charging points, it doesn’t take very long to charge fully and even a 5 minute charge will last you an hour or so of normal use.
So onto the prefilled pods, I was sent 5 flavours to test out, Virginia Rolling, Strawberry, Crisp Apple, Raspberry and Fruit Burst, there are 5 more flavours to choose from here:
They hold 2ml of eliquid, once the eliquid runs out you will likely taste a slight burnt taste, this is just the cotton inside singing as there’s no liquid left inside, you should stop using the pod and replace it at this point, though unpleasant it won’t harm as long as you don’t carry on vaping an empty pod, the pods aren’t reusable unfortunately and go into general waste when disposing.
Before I go any further, the nicotine strength is measured in percentage or milligrams (mg) and the higher the percentage, the stronger it is, think of it like ciggies such as Silk Cut being mild and Camel being strong. Similar to ciggies, you get a stronger throat hit from higher % or mg. Most of the range comes in either 1.8% (18mg) or 20% (20mg), a couple come in lower strength so they might be an option if you find it too strong.
The juice is made from four main elements:
- PG - Propylene Glycol, which is the main ingredient that carries the flavouring.
- VG - Vegetable Glycerine, which is the ingredient that produces the vapour.
- Nicotine – In a concentrated form and provides your nicotine hit and throat hit.
- Flavouring – Obviously this is what makes your vape carry that flavour.
PG, VG and flavouring are all commonly found in food and drink which are safe for human consumption. PG and VG are flavourless and are mostly used to bond the juice together and carry the flavouring. The nicotine is added into the mix for the obvious cravings satisfaction, you can actually vape without nicotine but you won’t feel any effects that smoking gives you.
Virginia Rolling Vape Pod Refills
"For those who like a deep and rich tobacco flavour when you smoke, the VIRGINIA ROLLING VAPE Pod is the perfect tobacco flavour to satisfy your cravings! If you roll your own cigarettes and want an authentic tasting tobacco flavour, this is the right VAPE Flavour for you."
As the description says, this one is close to that roll-ups flavour and is a great choice when starting off vaping as the experience is as close as you can get. I haven’t smoked for years, but this is pretty close to how I remember it with that authentic Golden Virginia aftertaste. (Thankfully you don’t get ‘fag breath’ with vaping).
Crisp Apple Vape Pod Refills
"The taste of the Crisp Apple is a blend of sweet red apples and tart green apples, giving you a sweet and satisfying vaping experience. Like we picked them from the orchard this morning!"
As you would expect, there is an apple flavour, this is unmistakeable and quite refreshing. You still get that ciggie throat hit and experience, but you’re left with a pleasant apple aftertaste.
Fruit Burst Vape Pod Refills
"The Fruit Burst is a mix of fresh fruit flavours that are perfect if you like a sweet and fruity vape! Super popular flavour!"
This one is a milder fruit flavour and the blend is well balanced. There’s no single flavour that stands out and it is similar to a mixed fruit squash drink, one of the flavours that you could vape all day without it becoming sickly.
Raspberry Vape pod Refills
"Get ready for pure raspberry bliss! Our RASPBERRY Flavour is oozing with fresh and juicy raspberry goodness. Like it was just picked and squeezed into the vape pod! If you like sweet, bright and fruity flavours, our RASPBERRY will be one of your favourites."
The flavour in this one was a little more subtle than the other flavours, it reminded me of flavoured pipe tobacco where you could taste it on the inhale but with less of an aftertaste. It was pleasant enough, but not one for my taste-buds.
Strawberry Vape Pod Refills
"Get ready for pure strawberry satisfaction! Our STRAWBERRY Flavour is bursting with fresh and juicy strawberry goodness. It's like with picked the strawberries at their perfect ripeness right from the field, too be squeezed into the vape pod just for you! If you like a sweet, summery and fruity vape, our STRAWBERRY will be one of your favourites."
Out of the fruit flavours I enjoyed this one the most, the Strawberry flavour was noticeable on the inhale and is not too sweet. Smooth strawberry is the best way I can describe it, and it is one I could happily vape day-in day-out.
Overall I found the SMOKO Vape Pod a great starter kit for people looking to quit smoking, the health benefits are pretty instant and this kit makes the transition one of the easiest methods to go smoke free. The trick is to carry on using them exclusively and not smoke in-between as your body gets used to one over the other. It still requires a little will power but not much, and ends up far more satisfying than smoking. Then there’s the other huge benefit; the cost! After the initial outlay, you are quids in as the only consumables are the pre-filled pods. It’s hard to quantify as we all smoke/vape different amounts, but the savings will be huge.
One of the good things about the SMOKO website is that there’s a wealth of information/advice/tips so it is well worth a browse and it should help you on your vaping journey.
One thing I would really like to see from SMOKO are nic salt pods for this device as they are my main daily e-liquid, I found this range quite strong on my throat. That said, the strength would have suited me more when I first quit smoking.