Dec 18, 2018
IQOS or electronic cigarettes, which one to choose?
Many adult smokers are recurrently looking for alternatives to replace traditional smoking. During the last years, we have seen a large number of possibilities that have replaced cigarettes with steam, such as IQOS that allows heating the tobacco instead of burning it, or the electronic cigarettes that heat a liquid nicotine solution.
Answering this question and taking decision may be not easy. It depends on many factors. The best choice depend on the preferences of each user, the unique characteristics of each device, and the way in which the cigarette is commonly consumed.
In order to know a little more about each option and identify the best experience that would fit the preferences of each user, below we share some characteristics to compare:
What do they have in common?
IQOS and electronic cigarettes have three main characteristics in common:
1. Instead of burning tobacco, both heat a liquid solution of nicotine or a tobacco unit.
2. Both devices produce steam, instead of smoke. None of them produce ash.
3. Both work by an electronic device, using electric power.
What makes them different?
• It is a heated tobacco product that allows you to taste real tobacco without burning it and represents an alternative to replace cigarettes. However, there are additional features that make it special:
• IQOS generates on average 90% less levels of harmful chemicals compared to cigarette smoke.
• Inhalation feels similar to a traditional cigarette, but the absence of smoke completely changes the experience. This is because it is inhaled trough a filter very similar to a cigarette, unlike an electronic cigarette where the inhalation is given through a nozzle.
• By containing sheets of tobacco selected in HEETS, the flavor is preserved and resembles the sensation of a cigarette.
• The tobacco aroma is light and toasted; however, it is much less noticeable than a cigarette smoke, and is not impregnated in clothing or hair. This is because the aerosol that IQOS produces does not have a negative impact on air quality and is less dense compared to cigarette smoke.
• It is very similar to traditional smoking, but it is used as a technological alternative.
• IQOS heats tobacco to approximately 300 degrees Celsius, adequate temperature so as not to burn tobacco, preventing combustion and the production of smoke and ash.
• Provides an experience without fire, without smoke, without ash and with less smell in clothes, hands or hair.
• The maintenance of the device requires a simple cleaning after 20 uses to eliminate the excess of tobacco sheet accumulated in the device.
Electronic cigarettes are characterized by a liquid solution with nicotine, instead of tobacco, and in some cases, they may include flavorings.
• According to Public Health England, electronic cigarettes are "at least 95% less harmful than cigarettes".
• Inhalation differs from traditional cigarettes, and generates steam, instead of smoke.
• The flavor and aroma varies according to the liquid selected by the user, who must charge his device periodically to continue producing steam.
• In some cases, it is necessary to make a change of the resistances for its maintenance, according to the intensity of its use. This procedure involves in most cases disarming part of the device and cleaning some of its parts.
IQOS has stood out for being an innovative technological development that is revolutionizing the experience in the consumption of nicotine and tobacco. For its part, electronic cigarettes have shown significant growth in recent years. When choosing the best alternative, for those who prefer tobacco without combustion, the answer will be very simple.
*Content developed by Coltabaco SAS.
 Source: Average of the reductions in concentrations of a wide range of harmful and potentially harmful chemicals in the IQOS aerosol compared to those measured in the smoke of more than 1.600 cigarette brands in approximately 40 countries between 2008 and 2017. Collections of aerosol and smoke carried out under the smoking machine regime of Health Canada Intense. Reduction calculations exclude nicotine.