Electronic cigarettes get all the limelight while e hookahs hang out in the shadows, but they are very similar. Most people don’t know what a hookah is except that they remember the caterpillar in Disney’s rendition of Alice in Wonderland sucking on a hose and blowing plumes of smoke. He appeared to be drugged in some way (and every part of Wonderland took on the characteristics of a drug-induced dream in the book and in various movie renditions).
Not that Story
A hookah, however, is not necessarily used for vaporizing drugs. It can be used that way, but is really a social tool associated with Middle Eastern culture. The shisha used in hookahs is merely tobacco mixed with sugar and water. E hookahs provide similarly sweet flavors, if not quite the exotic experience of sitting on a Persian rug in a Moroccan market drinking mint tea and sucking vapor from the end of a hose attached to an ornate jug.
Portable E Hookahs
The most recognizable portable form of a hookah is shaped like a pen and tipped with a miniature but authentic-looking hour-glass tip. This item lasts for up to 1,200 puffs depending on the brand, though often more like 800 according to the manufacturer (whose estimate is usually an exaggeration.) When the e liquid runs out or the battery dies, this item is disposed of, preferably in a battery recycling bin.
They tend to be colorful little pens featuring exotic colors and often images of the flavors they represent. Vapers either activate the heating coil by sucking on the tip or they press a button to heat the coil and then draw. Their price can be anywhere from $7 to $13 for a single item.
Their flavors are what make them so different from e cigarettes, being tobacco-free and usually fruity. Typical flavors would be grape, strawberry, daiquiri, blueberry, or watermelon: any kind of fruit or fruit-style cocktail. Most e hookahs contain a low amount of nicotine or no nicotine.
Brands of E Hookahs
Beamer, Tsunami, Fantasia, White Rhino, Starbuzz, and Square 82 are all e hookah brands. Beamer offers 6 nicotine-free flavors, 1,200 puffs, and button-free activation. A Starbuzz e hookah is also nicotine-free but has a button on the side. Starbuzz also makes big hoses for individual use which are big items for attention seekers. They do not resemble authentic hookahs at all. A few e hookahs don’t have the special tip; just shisha flavors.
Authentic Looking E Hookahs
A few companies make two-person e hookahs with two hoses and possibly a water jug. They operate the way e cigs do using clearomizers or other atomizer styles but vapor is passed along a hose before reaching the mouthpiece. Consumers place their favorite flavors of e juice into the clearomizers and vape in the hookah style. To make this a truly realistic experience, they choose juice flavors that emulate shisha such as types listed above.
Rechargeable kits cost around $150.00, probably because they are so ornate. You can probably look around and find one for less, but much of the attraction associated with realistic e hookah is its appearance. You can get the same flavor out of an eGo battery and atomizer using the right e liquid, but with part of the atmosphere missing, it will not feel like you are in a hot North African country if you close your eyes. Choose a realistic device for an exotic experience.
Buy an E Hookah
You can find e hookahs in stores that sell vaporizers and e cigarette stores, but they are usually in the former sort of shop or a smoke shop; even an exotic specialty store selling North African and Middle Eastern décor. A number of hookah lounges have sprung up around the United States too, so if you want to know what it feels like to use a hookah, drop by one of those with a friend. They are like vape lounges and pubs: laid-back and social.