Shortfill E-Liquid: What It Is and How to Use It

The vaping world is packed with such a huge variety of products, helping accommodate so many different vaping experiences. Within this variety are a range of e-liquids, all with varying flavours, PG/VG ratios, and nicotine strengths. Shortfill e-liquid is just one type of vape juice available. You might’ve heard of these products before, and they could be suitable for you. But exactly what is shortfill e-liquid?  

This guide takes you through all you need to know about shortfill e-liquid. We’ll explore what it is, how to use it, and which type of vapers can benefit the most from it.

What Is Shortfill E-liquid and How Do I Use Them?
Shortfill e-liquid is a 0 mg nicotine strength flavoured sub-ohm vape juice designed to be used with higher powered sub-ohm box mod kits and some vape pens. 

As its name suggests, these e-liquids come filled short of the bottle’s capacity, and leave a space so that users can top it up with a 10ml nicotine shot. Nic shot is a concentrated liquid containing 18 - 20 mg nicotine strength. Nic shots are specifically designed to be added to a shortfill e-liquid. The shortfills themselves typically bring the flavour (a range of flavours are available), while nic shots bring the nicotine, and are usually unflavoured or menthol.

Shortfills typically have a high VG to PG ratio (usually around 70VG/30PG). This means they’re best for sub-ohm style vaping, offered in devices like box mod kits.

You can use shortfill e-liquid in two different ways. Firstly, you can vape shortfill vape juice as it comes, without adding nicotine into the mixture. This is great for those who want a nicotine-free vaping experience. On the other hand, if you're going to include nicotine, simply dilute a nic shot into your selected shortfill bottle, close the lid and shake well before using. Different shortfills will come with different nic shot capacities. It’s common for 50 ml shortfills to come in 60 ml bottles, with 10 ml space for a nic shot, or 100 ml in 120 ml bottles with 20 ml space for the same purpose.

If you dilute 10 ml of nic shot with an 18 mg nicotine strength to 50 ml of vape juice, the nicotine strength will come to 3 mg - great for those who prefer a low nicotine strength when vaping. If you add a 20 mg nicotine shot like Nic Nic’s Nic Salt Shot 10 ml to a 60 ml shortfill flavour bottle, you will get a sub-ohm vape juice a little over 3 mgs in strength.  

Benefits of Shortfill E-Liquid
There are loads of benefits to shortfill e-liquid. This type of vape juice can be handy for those wanting to reduce their nicotine usage. These e-liquids tend to have a low nicotine strength, which is why they are designed to have nic shots diluted into them. Vaping the shortfill as is (i.e., 0 mg nicotine strength) removes nicotine from your vaping experience, helping you move further along your smoke-free, nicotine-free journey. This is useful to know if you’re keen to taper your nicotine use and graduate to vaping entirely nicotine free.

You should only ever vape to help you stop smoking.1 But once you stop smoking and start vaping, you can also work towards stopping vaping.1 Vaping is currently estimated to be around 95% less harmful than smoking.2 That said, it’s healthier not to smoke or vape, and lowering your nicotine intake gradually can help reduce the amount of this addictive substance you use.1 You can find out more about nicotine-free vaping in our guide Are Nicotine Free Vapes Safe?

Shortfill e-liquid also comes with a fantastic range of flavours. Choose from super sweet treat-like flavours, including Rhubarb & Custard and Strawberry Laces & Sherbet, or fruity blends like Kiwi Passion Kick and Dragon Berry Blend. If you’re more into menthol or tobacco-like flavours, there are plenty of shortfills to suit these tastes too. 

Shortfills are ideal for a more economical, environmentally friendly and longer-lasting sub-ohm vape. If you want to buy in bulk, purchasing your favourite flavours in larger, 50 ml - 100 ml quantities can work out cheaper than buying the same flavours in 10 ml bottles. This can be true even when taking into account the cost of nic shots. Buying shortfills might also help reduce waste, as they give you more of your favourite e-liquid in one bottle, rather than lots of 10 ml bottles. 

Is Shortfill E-Liquid Right for Me?
Shortfill e-liquid can offer great benefits, but these are only useful to sub-ohm vapers. The vaping experience is unique to each and every vaper, and tailored to what they’re looking to get out of vaping. When considering whether this type is suitable for you, it’s good to first consider what you want from your e-liquid, and see whether shortfills meet your own vaping requirements. 

Shortfills are great for those who want more control over the nicotine content their e-liquids have. They allow users to choose their own nic shot and shortfill combination, and mix these two together, making for a more personalised flavour experience overall. Shortfills can also last longer than other, 10 ml premixed bottles, as they typically come in larger, 60 ml - 120 ml quantities.

Shortfill e-liquid can also be a good choice for those who like a lot of one type of flavour. Shortfills typically come in larger amounts than other types of e-liquids, as they don’t contain nicotine. Many vape juices are available in 10 ml bottles, and if you enjoy a particular flavour, you might find yourself buying a lot of the same product. Shortfills, in comparison, can come in larger quantities (e.g., 60 ml and 120 ml bottles), giving you a lot more of the juice in fewer bottles.