What’s the difference between MTL and DTL vaping?

by Jemma Wolfe
MTL Vs DTL Vaping: What’s the Difference?

MTL Vs DTL Vaping: What’s the Difference?

  • Introduction
  • What is MTL Vaping?
  • Who is MTL Vaping for?
  • Whats the best MTL Vape Kit?
  • Which E-Liquids best for MTL Vaping?
  • How to take an MTL Hit
  • What is DTL Vaping?
  • Who Is DTL Vaping For?
  • What's the best DTL Vape Kit?
  • Which E-liquids best for DTL Vaping?
  • How to take a DTL Hit
  • What's the Difference?
  • Is MTL or DTL better?
  • Can you MTL on a DTL Vape?

As the world of vaping expands and vape culture becomes more popular, so does its jargon. Nowadays, it’s almost impossible to navigate your way through the vaping scene without first familiarising yourself with the lingo. For curious beginners just dipping their toes in and wanting to find out more, the ever-expanding dictionary of vaping vocab can be more than a little overwhelming; but fear not, we’re here to help.

When shopping around for a new vape kit, the first vaping vernacular you’ll stumble upon is likely to be MTL and DTL vaping. While these acronyms may seem confusing and sometimes off-putting at first glance, once you get to grips with these terms and understand how they work and how to apply them when choosing your next vape kit, you’ll be well on your way to perfecting your ideal vaping experience.

Our guide is here to clear up any confusion you may have when it comes to MTL and DTL vaping. We’ll explain what it means, take a look at how they work and how they compare to help you understand the difference and thus determine which vaping style is right for you to optimise your experience. Let’s dive right in!

What is MTL vaping?

If you’re a beginner on the hunt for your first vape starter kit, you’ve probably come across the term “MTL Vaping” while shopping around. This abbreviation stands for Mouth to Lung vaping; a vaping style that’s often associated with beginner users as it’s designed to closely replicate the sensation of smoking a traditional cigarette.

Vaping first came into existence as a means to help smokers quit their habit, and this all started with MTL vaping. As the name suggests, MTL vaping involves two stages of inhalation. First, the vapour is inhaled into your mouth, then, it’s inhaled into the lungs before eventually exhaling, much like smoking a real cigarette.

MTL vape kits tend to require lower power outputs and therefore produce a minimal amount of vapour. This discreet vapour production paired with a natural, cigarette-like draw and satisfying ‘throat hit’ makes MTL vaping the ideal style for new users and those trying to quit smoking for good.

Who is MTL vaping for?

Mouth to Lung vapingis most popular among smokers, ex-smokers and those new to the world of vaping. This is primarily because it is the vaping style that most closely mimics thesensation of smoking, thus allowing a smoother transition from smoking cigarettes to vaping with an e-cigarette.

MTL vaping is also the ideal vaping style for users seeking maximum flavour without creating large vapour clouds, making it the most discreet and less intense option that isn’t too taxing on the lungs. It’s also widely seen as the most economical vaping style as MTL kits tend to use less e-liquid than DTL devices, which will ultimately save users money in the long run.

What’s the best MTL vape kit?

Most vape kits on the market today support MTL vaping, so you won’t have to search far and wide to find one. As we touched upon above, MTL vape kits don’t need a lot of power to function, so they often come in the form of disposable vape pens, pod vapes, and starter kits. These vape kits tend to be compact and pocket-sized as they only require a small battery, making them ultra-portable and suitable for users wanting an unobtrusive device for seamless vaping on the go.

Regardless of which type of MTL vape kit you choose, most of these devices will feature a smaller mouthpiece and restricted airflow to limit the amount of vapour that escapes and enters your mouth and lungs to deliver that all-important, cigarette-like throat hit.

MTL vape kits also require a coil with a high resistance in order to vaporise e-liquid at a lower temperature, which in turn produces less vapour. These coils tend to feature a resistance of 1 Ohm or above. However, many vape starter kits and disposable devices operate using a fixed wattage output that will automatically adjust to your coil, so you won’t have to worry about manually adjusting this yourself.

Which E-liquids are best for MTL vaping?

If you’re currently a smoker or have recently quit smoking, it might be a good idea to start vaping with e-liquid that has a high nicotine content, such as nic salt e-liquid. This is because cigarettes have a high nicotine content, so vaping the same amount of nicotine as your body is already accustomed to will help to alleviate withdrawal symptoms and allow for a smooth transition.

When it comes to composition, as a general rule, MTL vaping is best paired with e-liquid with a high propylene glycol (PG) content. Higher PG content delivers a strong throat hit that closely mimics smoking a cigarette. Plus, PG delivers flavour better than VG, allowing the users to experience the full flavour profile. We stock a wide range of 50PG/50VG and 40PG/60VG e-liquid that’s suitable for use in vape starter kits to provide a genuine MTL vape.

How to take an MTL hit

If you’ve never used an e-cigarette before, you may feel anxious and unsure how to vape correctly. But fear not, MTL vaping is one of the easiest styles to get to grips with. The best way to approach MTL vaping is to use it in the same way you would a real cigarette; take a smooth steady inhale, hold it in your mouth for 1-2 seconds and inhale a second time to allow the vapour to reach your lungs before finally exhaling.

The length of time between drawing the vapour from the mouth to the lungs and exhaling the vapour comes down to personal preference. The longer you allow the vapour to sit in your mouth, the more satisfaction you’ll get from the nicotine and the more flavour you’ll experience.

Now that we’ve gone through all the key points of MTL vaping, it’s time to look at its counterpart: DTL vaping.

What is DTL vaping?

DTL stands for Direct to Lung and is a style of vaping that’s best suited for advanced users that have some prior experience using e-cigarettes and are now looking to take a step-up from MTL vaping. Unlike MTL vaping, DTL vaping involves inhaling vapour from the mouthpiece straight into your lungs before exhaling, rather than allowing it to linger in your mouth first.

Beginners may find DTL vaping too overwhelming at first, as the large clouds of vapour collected in the lungs can feel intense and result in coughing or discomfort. But for cloud chasers and advanced vape fans seeking large vapour plumes and an intense experience, DTL is sure to satisfy.

Who is DTL vaping for?

Adopting a DTL vaping style as a new user is likely to be a shock to the system as it serves up a totally different experience to smoking a traditional cigarette. As a result, DTL vaping is best left to more advanced users and experienced vape fans who have already familiarised themselves with MTL vapes and are seeking something more intense.

What’s the best DTL vape kit?

While MTL vape kits tend to be sleek and ultra-portable, DTL devices tend to be on the larger side as they require more power to operate, which means they use a larger battery. Although most DTL vapes are still somewhat portable and can fit comfortably in your pocket, they’re not quite as compact as MTL devices and some people consider them too large or cumbersome.

If you’re ready to get started with DTL vaping, it’s best to steer clear of disposables, small pod devices and starter kits, as these won’t deliver the desired experience. A good DTL vape kit will usually come in the form of a variable wattage kit, box mod or sub ohm vape kit, many of which come equipped with advanced settings and displays to allow the user to customise their vaping experience.

Unlike MTL vape kits, a DTL device will require coils with a resistance below 1 Ohm. This lower resistance ensures the coil heats the e-liquid to a high temperature to generate a warmer, denser vapour. This is what’s commonly known as sub-ohm vaping.

Furthermore, most DTL vape kits come with adjustable airflow settings, often in the form of a small lever located on the device itself. Opening up the airflow vent increases the amount of air flowing through the tank and into your lungs. The more air flowing through the device, the bigger the vapour clouds. The amount of airflow you require will depend on your own preferences, so it’s best to play around with it until you figure out what feels good to you.

Which E-liquids are best for DTL vaping?

As Direct to Lung and sub-ohm vaping generates more vapour per puff, you don’t need to use high nicotine strength e-liquids like you would when MTL vaping. So, it’s best to opt for a lower nicotine strength when DTL vaping. We recommend starting with a 6mg or less nicotine strength e-liquid as any higher could result in harsh throat hits and unpleasant side effects.

As well as nicotine strength, it’s also equally important to think about composition when DTL vaping. Generally, it’s best to stick to e-liquids with a high vegetable glycerine(VG) content. Fortunately, there’s a huge variety of vape juices that fit into this category, allowing you to choose from 60VG/40PG, 70VG/30PG, 80VG/20PG and 90VG+ options.

However, it’s important to remember that no two sub ohm kits are the same, and as some high VG liquids are very viscous, they may be too thick to wick your coil effectively which can result in unpleasant dry hits. The best way to check if your tank is compatible with very high VG e-liquids is to inspect the wicking holes on your coil; too small, and they’ll struggle to absorb the juice.

How to take a DTL hit

Direct to lung vaping requires drawing the vapour gently and consistently into your lungs, completely avoiding holding it in your mouth. The technique is more like using breathing normally rather than sucking or drawing on the mouthpiece. As soon as you feel the vapour fill your lungs, you can exhale just as you would when breathing normally.

DTL vaping allows you to take longer draws than MTL vaping, so you can inhale for roughly 6-10 seconds or until your lungs are at capacity before exhaling. Plus, the faster you exhale, the larger the clouds.

MTL vs DTL vaping: What’s the Difference?

As you’ve probably gathered by now, MTL and DTL are totally different vaping styles. In fact, they’re almost complete opposites of each other. To keep things simple, here’s a quick breakdown of the key differences between the two to help you identify which vaping style is most suitable for you:

MTL Vaping

  • Suitable for beginners and smokers
  • Mimics cigarette sensation
  • Can be achieved with a basic kit
  • Compatible with high nicotine strength e-liquids
  • Uses less e-liquid

DTL Vaping

  • Designed for advanced users
  • Feels less like smoking a cigarette
  • Requires more advanced equipment
  • Suitable for use with high VG e-liquid
  • Uses more e-liquid

Is MTL or DTL better?

There’s no real answer to this question, as it ultimately comes down to your own preferences and what you’re looking for in a vape. Getting to know your own vaping style will help you to make a sensible and informed choice about what kind of vape kitis right for you.

Regardless of which vaping style you opt for, remember that it isn’t permanent. If you start with an MTL pod kit and decide you want something more intense and with more vapour production, you’re always free to pick up a sub-ohm kit and give it a whirl. Similarly, if you’re finding DTL vaping a little too overwhelming, it’s always possible to take a step back and get your hands on a basic MTL kit to get those cigarette-like throat hits instead.

Some vape fans prefer not to limit themselves to just one vaping style and choose to use an MTL vape alongside a sub-ohm vape kit. Either way, the choice is entirely yours! If you are looking for the best of both then another option to look at would be RDTL (Restricted Direct To Lung), if you want a clearer picture of what may work for you head over to our in-depth guide to RDTL.

Can you MTL on a DTL vape?

Yes, fortunately for fans of mods, it’s entirely possible to get an MTL experience from certain direct to lung vape kits. As many DTL vape mods come with advanced features such as variable wattage, you’re free to adjust the wattage to achieve an MTL sensation complete with throat hits. To achieve this successfully, you should ensure that your wattage output is set to 15W or below and reduce the airflow for the best results.

MTL & DTL Vaping at myCigara

Here at myCigara, we exist to make the UK smoke-free. By offering a range of high quality vaping equipment that caters to both MTL and DTL vaping styles, we hope to help our customers make that all important first step on their quit smoking journey.

If you’re new to vaping and want to get started with an MTL vape kit, you’re in luck. We stock a wide range of devices suitable for beginners, including disposable vapes, pod kits, and pen-style starter kits. We also have a huge selection of nic salts and 50/50 starter liquids to help you get the most out of your MTL device.

If you’re a more advanced user and feel ready to give DTL vaping a try, we’ve got you covered with our great selection of sub-ohm vape kits and mods, as well as a huge variety of high VG e-liquid for an intense flavour experience with large vapour clouds.

If you require further help or advice, don’t hesitate to reach out and contact us. Alternatively, you can head down to your local myCigara vape store to chat to one of our friendly members of staff.

What’s the difference between MTL and DTL vaping?

If you’re a beginner, you might see these terms as just another roadblock on your way to quitting smoking for good. In fact, they are an essential part of your vape journey. Without gaining an understanding of these different terms and how to enact them yourself, you will be unable to unlock the world of possibilities that new box mods, sub ohm devices, and pod kits have to offer.

The terms MTL and DTL represent a small section of the ever-expanding vocabulary that has been created by vapers to describe the different styles of vaping. The vast majority of people stick with one style, with the minority switching between the two.

There’s no need to feel intimidated by these terms. Once you’ve learned how to DTL and MTL vape yourself, the process will become as easy as breathing. Simply read through this article to discover the different vaping styles and choose the one that is right for you.  

What is mouth to lung vaping?

MTL stands for mouth to lung, which is also sometimes abbreviated to M2L. Beginners favour this style of vaping because it replicates the ‘throat hits’ that occur when smoking a traditional cigarette. As the name suggests, a throat hit is created when the nicotine concentrate in your cigarette or e liquid hits the back of your throat. You can create a stronger throat hit by using high PG blends, e liquids with a higher nicotine concentration, and by decreasing the airflow on your device. MTL vapers favour an intense flavour experience over creating clouds.

When performing a MTL vape, the individual will inhale, hold the vapour in their mouth, and then draw the vapour into their lungs. Most people find that enacting a mouth to lung vape is the most natural way to inhale their vapour.

Once you have familiarised yourself with the technique, you need to consider how long you want to hold the vapour in your mouth. This depends on your personal preferences regarding throat hits. The longer you hold the vapour, the more intense the flavour experience and the throat hit.

It is also important to consider how dense you want the resulting clouds to be. Hold your vapour for a shorter amount of time to create less vapour and have a more unobtrusive vape.

What vape hardware do I need for mouth to lung vaping?

You won’t have to look far to find an MTL compatible kit. This style of vaping dominates the market for beginner and pod kit enthusiasts alike. We recommend browsing through our collection of starter kits and pod kits to find the best mouth to lung vape kit for you.

Our customers love pod kits because they are both affordable and compact. Despite their compressed exteriors, they are packed full of technological advancements, and have the added benefit of hassle-free click-in magnetic systems. We stock both open pod and closed pod systems.

Although direct to lung kits dominate the advanced vape device market, mod enthusiasts will be happy to know that there are some options available to them. Vape mods typically have variable wattage functions that can reach highs of 80W. However, if you want an MTL draw then you should set the output to no more than 15W. You should also be cautious about adjustable airflow features, and make sure to reduce the airflow where possible.

What e liquid should I use for mouth to lung vaping?

High PG e liquids are perfect for MTL vaping. PG, which stands for propylene glycol, is an essential part of your MTL experience because it carries flavour better than its counterpart, VG. Mouth to lung vapers prefer flavour over vapour because they want to create an intense taste sensation when they hold the vapour in their mouth.

It is common to find high VG e liquids that have an 80VG/20PG composition, but the same cannot be said of high PG e liquids. We stock 50PG/50VG and 40PG/60VG compositions in our online vape shop. Browse through our selection of Dinner Lady 50/50 e liquids for an unforgettable mouth to lung experience.

What is direct to lung vaping?

DTL vaping has several names. It refers to direct to lung, straight to lung, and D2L vaping. This style can be difficult to accomplish for people who have just transitioning from smoking to vaping because they are more accustomed to an MTL style.

Straight to lung vaping happens when a vaper takes a slow, long drag on their device. They then inhale the vapour directly into their lung, not pausing to hold the vapour in their mouth as they would do if they were enacting an MTL vape.

Beginner vapers who want to try the DTL vaping style should be warned that their first attempt might result in a coughing fit. Because they have just transitioned to vaping, their lungs are still coated in tar from cigarettes. A direct to lung hit can be somewhat of a shock to their system.

Once vapers have grown accustomed to the DTL style, they are able to inhale for between five and ten seconds. For an optimal vape experience, we recommend attempting to inhale for nearer to ten seconds. Exhaling quickly increases vapour production and creates dense, immense clouds.

What vape hardware do I need for direct to lung vaping?

Most pod devices and starter kits do not accommodate DTL vaping. People who want to attempt a direct to lung vaping style should opt for a variable wattage kit or a box mod. Sub ohm kits are ideal for DTL vapers because they often come complete with the hardware needed for a successful hit.

Unlike MTL kits, the ideal DTL kit should have a wide 810 drip tip. This allows you to inhale as hard as you can to create the power needed to suck the vapour straight into your lungs. Direct to lung enthusiasts should also opt for sub ohm coils because they contain low resistance and are compatible with the high wattage output that is needed to draw on your device for longer.

An adjustable airflow option is vital for DTL vapes. Luckily, most sub ohm kits come complete with this feature. A wider airflow is essential for inhaling more vapour into your lungs and creating bigger clouds.  

What e liquid should I use for direct to lung vaping?

Whereas MTL vapers should opt for high PG e liquids, DTL vapers should buy high VG vape juice. VG stands for vegetable glycerin, which is known for providing a smoother throat hit. This is essential when you are inhaling a great deal of vapour, as the resulting throat hit can be overwhelming.

There is much more variety when it comes to high VG compositions in comparison to high PG blends. There is a range of compositions with as much as 60, 70, 80, and even as much as 90% VG. It is important to note that VG is considerably thicker than PG. Because of this, it is not compatible with very sub ohm tank on the market. To check whether your tank is suitable, have a look at the size of the wicking holes in the coil itself. If they are on the smaller side, it will be difficult to pull viscous high VG e liquid through the holes when you inhale. If you are ever in doubt, make sure to research your tank before filling it with high VG concentrates.

It’s also important to consider the amount of nicotine you want as a DTL vaper. We recommend low levels of nicotine for people who prefer a direct to lung vape. Any higher than 6mg nicotine strength will create a harsh throat hit that most beginner vapers will find overwhelming.

Mouth to lung or direct to lung coils?

It is important to choose the right coils for your personal vaping style. MTL coils are a lot smaller than DTL coils. The smaller the diameter of the coils, the less air that can be pulled through the coil, which makes for a tighter draw.

In contrast, sub ohm coils have a wider diameter to allow for more holes in the coils and therefore more air. DTL coils need to allow more air to pass through the coils in order to accommodate a longer inhale.

Are cigarettes mouth to lung or direct to lung?

People who want to kick the habit for good often opt for a mouth to lung vaping style, because it replicates the ‘throat hit’ that occurs when smoking a normal cigarette. This is also why new vapers might struggle to integrate a direct to lung vaping style into their lives. Most people are not accustomed to ‘bypassing’ their mouth whilst smoking.

Can I smoke direct to lung on a sub ohm tank?

When learning about MTL and DTL vaping, it can be difficult to find the right kit for you. In fact, most sub ohm tanks are designed with direct to lung vaping in mind. You’ll get the most satisfying vape experience out of advanced kits. These kits have variable wattage features, which are crucial for DTL vapers because their kit requires a strong power output in order to accommodate the long draw time.

Are JUULs mouth to lung?

Beginners love the JUUL starter kit because it provides an intense mouth to lung experience that recreates the feeling of smoking a traditional cigarette. This device comes complete with a tight airflow, which is essential for creating a satisfying MTL draw.

The JUUL has a slimline design which is perfect for vapers who want a lightweight and discrete device. It has the added benefit of a JUUL app, which monitors usage, allows you to secure your device, and even has the ability to find your JUUL in case you misplace it. We recommend this kit for vapers who want all of the benefits that come with modern technology.

Mouth to lung devices at myCigara

Here at myCigara, we understand the importance of helping beginners make the first step in their vape journey. We stock a wide selection of mouth to lung devices from industry-leading brands. When you buy MTL devices from our online vape shop, you can rest assured that you are buying products that have stood the test of time. With everything from the Aspire PockeX and the Smok Nord Pod kit, there’s something to satisfy every taste bud in our MTL range. 

Direct to lung devices at myCigara

If you’re unsure about which devices boast direct to lung capabilities, look no further than our selection of sub ohm kits. Because these kits typically come with bigger coils and variable wattage capabilities, they have all the hardware required for long draws. We recommend the Geekvape Aegis Boost Pod System, and the Voopoo Drag 3 Kit because they are all firm fan-favourites.