You probably never bothered to ask yourself the question. Vapour, or steam, is white. But then some, notably “cloud-chasers” may want to exhale plumes of blue, green, or red vapour… An intriguing idea for scenic vaping. But is it even possible?
Coloured smoke is nothing new. Drifting enthusiasts, the “artistic” practise of making car tyres skid along the asphalt, has for years now involved tyres that emit coloured smoke as friction ignites the surface: but what about vapour?
As you can imagine, the fact of inhaling the vapour makes things more complicated… The subject has been discussed on various forums and most users recommend the use of lights or lasers to achieve the effect. That is to say colouring the smoke in “post-production”.
Adding a colouring agent to your e-liquid will make no difference, the vapour will remain resolutely white. In fact, many e-liquids contain colouring agenst already.
Even modern smoke machines cannot produce coloured vapour. The base ingredient in smoke machines is Propylene Glycol or PG, the same found in a lot of e-liquids.
So is there any hope for coloured clouds?
There is in fact a natural substance that will generate coloured vapour. It is the only one of its kind, iodine, creating a purple vapour. The name itself is inherited from ancient Greek, iodes, which means “violet-coloured”. It’s definitely pretty to look at, but noxious when inhaled and can cause severe allergic reactions.
Obviously, you should never, under any circumstances, vape iodine. Or anything other than e-liquid, for that matter. As of now, we do not have the technological means to produce coloured vapour.
There is however a workaround: LED lights for your mouth, invented by Motoi Ishibashi, a Japanese designer. These light up when you smile. This remains to be tested however for its effect on vaping!
Jeremie is a journalist who has been writing about e-cigarettes for five years. Always on the lookout for new trends, he has already tested hundreds of different products.