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Vaping Studies in 2024

Vaping Studies in 2024

What's the latest evidence on the most popular alternative to smoking?

Vaping continues to serve as a popular alternative to smoking, helping people manage their nicotine needs while enjoying a tar and carbon-monoxide-free experience. In 2022, we covered the most important vaping studies and habits—but things have changed significantly in two years.

So, we've searched far and wide to bring you the state of vaping in 2024. In this revamped post, you'll discover:

  1. How many people in the UK - and worldwide - are vaping.
  2. The demographics and age groups that vape the most. 
  3. Studies proving the benefits of vaping over smoking.
  4. Popular anti-vaping myths and the truth behind them.

Let's dive straight in.

How many vapers are there in the UK - and worldwide?

Vaping is a popular way to curb the cravings associated with nicotine addiction. When compared to smoking, it offers numerous benefits, including being much safer. In 2012, there were just 800,000 vapers in the UK, but these numbers increased steadily each year.

Today, research published by Ash confirms there are 4.7 million people who vape in the UK.

Worldwide vapers

Unfortunately, there's limited research on the number of worldwide vapers in 2024. We do know that a worldwide study by the Global State of Tobacco Harm Reduction found that 82 million people vaped in 2021.

However, the worldwide vaping market was worth $20.5 billion in 2021, but this increased to $24.6 billion in 2023. Further to this, estimates suggest the market revenue will reach $26.0 in 2024 (Statista).

So, while we don't have concrete figures on the amount of people vaping worldwide, the market size is a positive indicator that numbers continue to increase.

Who vapes most?

The most recent vaping prevalence report from Ash highlighted some key changes from 2022. In 2023:

  • Over half of UK vapers (2.7 million) are former smokers.
  • 1.7 million people are combining vaping with smoking in an effort to cut down.
  • Just 330,000 of current vapers have never smoked before.

Youth vaping habits

While people between 35 and 44 are still the biggest vapers, youth vaping increased significantly between 2022 and 2024. Research from the UK government highlights that youth vaping tripled over three years, with disposables witnessing the most prominent growth.

The number of youths using disposables increased ninefold in just two years, leading to the government's announcement of a UK disposable vape ban.

The BBC estimates that the ban will come into effect by 2025, leaving many people searching for alternatives.

Studies that prove the benefits of vaping over smoking

When vaping first became popular, the NHS and the UK Government conducted studies to assess whether it was safer than smoking. They concluded that vaping was, in fact, 95% safer, and a recent Evidence Update report confirmed that the initial conclusions still stand.

However, a BBC report also highlights that the initial message of vaping safety might have contributed to high e-cigarette use in younger people.

Had the message been clearer and emphasised that vaping is much safer for people who are trying to quit traditional cigarettes, we wouldn't be battling high usage among the 11-17-year-old age group.

Let's look at the latest evidence proving the benefits of vaping.

E-cigarette use can help people quit smoking

There are numerous smoking cessation products available, but the Cochrane Review shows that vaping can help people quit smoking for a minimum of six months.

Eight to ten adults use vaping to quit smoking successfully, while only six out of ten people succeed with patches, gum and other NRT products.

Reduced risks of heart disease

Heart disease is one of the leading causes of death in the UK, with men having a higher likelihood of heart attacks than women (British Heart Foundation).

The long-term effects of smoking can increase the risks of developing heart disease, but vaping can reduce the risks of heart disease in former smokers (AHA Journals).

While this research is a couple of years old, researchers are putting together a UK study that will measure the long-term effects of vaping on the heart, performing a comparison to smokers (Leeds Becket University).

Vaping reduces exposure to dangerous chemicals

In 2023, Science Direct cross-referenced studies from Scopus, PubMed, and Web of Science, concluding that vaping reduces exposure to dangerous chemicals.

With the UK planning to go smoke-free by 2030, vaping will continue to play a significant role in helping smokers quit and reducing the environmental impact caused by carbon monoxide and tar.

Popular anti-vaping myths (and the truth behind them)

Despite the popularity of vaping and numerous studies proving it's safer than smoking, there are still some myths that dominate the perceptions of the public.

To understand why so many people are continuing to choose smoking or quitting vaping, we need to explore the myths associated with e-cigarettes.

Myth: Vaping is just as dangerous as smoking

Smokers are still wary of vape products, with a UCL study revealing that just 19% of smokers believed vaping was less harmful in 2023. Despite the evidence supporting e-cigarette use, the misconceptions among smokers mean agencies are struggling to convince people to make the switch.

Myth: Vaping is as addictive as smoking

OK, most e-liquids contain nicotine. However, while nicotine itself is an addictive substance, vaping can help you reduce your dependence over time. By choosing e-liquids with lower nicotine levels, it's easier to gradually cut down on the addictive substance.

Most importantly, while nicotine is addictive, it isn't linked to cancer. The chemicals, carbon monoxide and other substances in cigarettes are what ultimately increase a person's risk of getting cancer (Cancer Research).

Myth: Vaping will cause serious health issues 

We'll cover this again because long-term research still hasn't entirely removed the false belief that vaping causes popcorn lung. The CMAJ published an article in 2023 stating that popcorn lung occurs due to exposure to diacetyl.

Buying e-liquids from a reputable manufacturer keeps you safe from developing the condition and suffering a lung injury.

Another myth is that vaping can impact your immune system, but PhenoLife released a new study in 2024 debunking this.

Myth: Second-hand vapour is as harmful as second-hand smoke

Yes, another popular misconception is that passive vaping is as harmful as passive smoking. A report published by the UK government debunks this myth by pointing out that e-cigarettes don't contain the harmful toxins associated with cigarettes. There are no studies that prove any risks.

Myth: Vaping in teens serves as a gateway to smoking

Some people believe that teenagers who vape are more likely to smoke in the future. Research between 2007 and 2018 highlighted that there was no correlation between teens vaping and transitioning to smoking (UCL).

Despite the number of young vapers rising in recent years, there are still no indicators to confirm that vapes are gateways to smoking.

Myth: It's harder to quit vaping than smoking

Is regular vaping harder to quit than smoking? No. Sure, they're more accessible, but a recent study using information from a Reddit group found that individuals quit vaping by gradually reducing their nicotine intake.

It's harder to do this with smoking, as the amount of nicotine in each cigarette is already set. So, if you have the willpower and can gradually transition to zero-nicotine vape juices, quitting vaping is easier.

E-Cigarettes in 2024: Are they a good option?

While there will always be some negative associations with vaping, the studies we've covered show it's a healthier alternative to smoking. While banning disposable vapes will prevent young people from becoming dependent on nicotine, adults can quit smoking and look forward to fewer health implications.

Key takeaways:

  • As the number of worldwide vapers increases, more people will quit smoking. Not only will this reduce the burden on healthcare services, but it also aligns with the fight to save our planet.
  • Public health agencies state that vaping is still 95% safer than smoking, and switching to it can save lives. That doesn't mean we should advocate for people who have never smoked to start vaping.
  • Choosing e-liquids from a reputable manufacturer will prevent exposure to harmful chemicals that can cause significant health issues.
  • As specialists perform more research on the long-term effects of vaping, we'll hopefully see people begin to accept its viability as a much safer alternative to smoking.
  • By using vaping products, you can gradually reduce your dependence on nicotine and leave nicotine in the past.
  • The ban on disposables will prevent more young people from developing a nicotine addiction. Adults can still access a range of vape kits to curb their cravings.

Make the transition today

Whether you choose starter pens, tanks, or disposable products, buying from a reputable manufacturer will ensure a safe experience.

At 88Vape, we offer a wide range of cost-effective vaping devices, e-liquids and nicotine shots at great prices. Our products are of the highest quality, and we go out of our way to ensure each customer has a safe experience.

We have strict processes to prevent the same vape products from being sold to adolescents and offer speedy UK delivery on all orders. Spend £15, and we'll ship everything for free.

Shop today and appreciate getting your nicotine hit without all the bad stuff associated with smoking.

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