Over the last three years disposable vapes have developed from a niche product to the biggest trend in the UK, and with the latest disposable vapes in 2023, the trend shows no sign of slowing down.
Disposable devices are incredibly easy-to-use. While a reusable device such as a mod or a pod-mod may need its coils and pods changing, and regular re-filling with e-liquid, with a disposable you just inhale, enjoy and dispose of when finished.
From a harm reduction perspective, this has been great, as their sheer simplicity means they have introduced many smokers to vaping for the first time.
It’s true that disposable devices have been available for many years, but have only taken off in popularity in the last few years. That’s largely down to improvements in performance and flavours – with the best disposable devices now producing vapour and taste to match that of reusable devices.
With more brands and ranges released on a regular basis, if you’re looking for a disposable vape device, it can be tricky to choose the best brand. In this post, we’ll highlight the best brands and ranges available in the UK, as well as what to look for when choosing a disposable vape device.
SKE Crystal Bar: Eye-catching, superb flavour and draw
Lasting up to 600 puffs per bar, the Crystal Bar range offers a large and varied choice of flavours with over 35 options ranging from tropical fruit, beverage and ice cream flavours to more traditional tobacco and menthol blends.
Filled with 20mg nicotine salt and featuring a mesh-design coil, Crystal Bar disposables offer a flavourful vape with high nicotine content and a smooth throat hit.
- Large & varied flavour choice
- Mesh coil for smooth, even flavour
- Only available in 20mg strength
|SKE Crystal Bar||20mg||Up to 600|
|Lost Mary (BM600 & QM600)||20mg||Up to 600|
|Elf Bar 600||0mg/10mg/20mg||Up to 600|
|Hexa Go||18mg||Up to 600|
|Aspire R1 (Refillable/Rechargable)||–||–|
|IVG 2400||20mg||Up to 2400|
|Gold Bar||20mg||Up to 600|
*Please note that puff count is estimated and will vary depending on the length and intensity of your inhale.
Lost Mary: Rapidly gaining popularity
The Lost Mary brand from the Elf Bar company is rapidly gaining traction in the disposables market.
The popular Lost Mary BM600 range’s unique ombre colour design and bottle-style shape not only make them stand out but ensure they are even more pocket-friendly than their pen-style counterparts, while still lasting up to 600 puffs.
Flavour-wise, the range has over 20 options and is mostly fruit based, with a few candy, menthol and beverage blends also in the mix.
The Lost Mary QM600 range has a different aesthetic – with a rectangular shape and rounded mouthpiece and a sleek, crystal-like finish. Featuring many of the same flavours we’ve seen in previous ranges, QM600 disposables also utilise QUAQ coil technology and a mesh coil for more rich and consistent flavour production.
Devices in all Lost Mary ranges come with a 20mg strength nic salt – perfect for new vapers looking to replace cigarette smoking with enough nicotine to satisfy their cravings.
- Unique bottle-like shape (BM600)
- Good grip
- Over 20 flavour choices
- No tobacco-based flavour options
- May be too sweet for some
Also see: Best Lost Mary Flavours.
Elf Bar 600: Over 40 flavours
The Elf Bar brand has become globally synonymous with disposable vapes – often being the first brand people think of.
With over 40 flavours available, the Elf Bar 600 range offers the most choice of all the brands we stock. From the super popular Watermelon to the more traditional Cream Tobacco, there’s an Elf Bar 600 disposable to cater to all tastes.
Filled with nicotine salt in 10mg, 20mg and nicotine-free options, each Elf Bar 600 can last up to 600 puffs before needing to be replaced.
- Huge selection of 40+ flavours
- Choice of 10mg, 20mg & nicotine-free strength options
- No pure tobacco flavour option
Hexa Go: Strong but not overly sweet
Hexa’s prefilled pod devices have been a hit with both our staff and customers thanks to their sheer ease of use – you simply attach a pod and inhale! New for 2023, the Hexa Go disposables range makes enjoying Hexa flavours even easier.
When testing these out, I found them similar to Hexa’s other devices in terms of their high-quality feel and gentle MTL inhale. But, what was particularly impressive was their flavour – which is strong and concentrated, though not as sickly sweet as some other disposables I’ve tried.
The range boasts a varied selection of over 20 options – with popular flavours that Hexa users will be familiar with, plus new options exclusive to this range. I particularly like the Fruit Mix flavour – which has a distinct guava tone underlying the mixed fruit – with the fruit flavour coming to the fore on the exhale.
I was also happy to find a tobacco option – something rarely seen in disposables. It’s a nice, gentle tobacco too, sweetened with light sugary tones, but with an underlying earthiness.
The only downside is that they are available in just one strength (18mg), meaning there isn’t an option for lower-strength users. But, if you like a satisfying vape with a variety of flavours that aren’t too sickly, this range is perfect!
- Varied flavour selection, including tobacco
- Strong but not overpowering flavour
- Only one strength option
Aspire R1: Use with the e-liquid of your choice!
The Aspire R1 is a disposable vape with a difference!
While its fixed coil means you do eventually need to dispose of the device, the R1 can be recharged and refilled with an e-liquid of your choice – meaning it lasts significantly longer than your average disposable. You only need to dispose of it when the coil reaches the end of its life.
We’ve found the R1 makes a great stepping stone between disposable and reusable devices as it is still super easy to use with inhale firing and automatic power settings. I’m happy it’s also a more environmentally-friendly alternative to regular disposables, as the battery doesn’t get discarded after just one use.
The refillable pod is another great feature – opening up endless possibilities for flavour and meaning you can still enjoy your must-have vape juice.
When I recently found myself vape-less whilst waiting for a coil delivery, I purchased an R1 instead of a regular disposable (unfortunately I wasn’t at work so couldn’t bag myself a freebie!) and was pleasantly surprised to find it lasted me 3 full days of use.
Using the device over a few days, the lifespan struck me as particularly impressive since I’m a heavy vaper and a regular disposable doesn’t usually last me a day. Being able to still use my favourite e-liquid was a nice bonus too!
- Lasts longer than regular disposables
- More flavour options – use your own e-liquid
- More budget & environmentally friendly than regular disposables
IVG 2400: Longest-lasting UK disposable brand
For heavier vapers, a single 2ml disposable providing 600/700 puffs may not last a full day – which can be frustrating, expensive and cause a lot of environmental waste.
IVG’s 2400 disposables range solves this problem with an innovative 4-pod design providing 8ml of e-liquid and up to 2400 puffs – meaning you get 4 x times the use out of a single device! Each device features 4 prefilled pods that can be rotated. When one pod runs out, simply rotate to a new one!
This design also makes the 2400s more environmentally friendly than regular disposables – as their single battery design, reduced packaging and casing material result in a lot less waste when compared to 4 single devices.
2400 disposables are available in a wide range of over 30 fruit-based flavours. This includes multi-flavour options that allow you to try 4 different flavours in a single device.
Spoilt for choice? See Best IVG 2400 Flavours for our in-house team's handpicked favourites.
A limited strength variety is the only downside we can see for this range so far. At time of writing, 2400 disposables only have one nicotine strength available (20mg) which may make them unsuitable for lower-strength users.
- 4 pods provide up to 2400 puffs per device
- Available in 30+ flavours with single & multi-flavour options
- One strength option
Vape Gold Gold Bar: New contender with superb flavour and draw
Vape Gold’s Gold Bar may not be the best known disposable vape range in the UK, but after we handed them out to E-Cigarette Direct staff and gathered feedback, we had to include the range!
Why? It’s true that they are slim, stylish and come with a gold finish that makes them look good despite being reasonably priced.
But when it comes down to it, what really matters with a disposable is three things - how long they last, the draw and the taste- and Gold Bar hit the mark on all counts here.
The draw is that perfect balance between restricted and airy. (To use vaping parlance, it’s somewhere between a Mouth-to-Lung and a restricted Direct-Lung vape.)
The flavours also converted one of our team to spearmint - she had never liked that particular flavour before, but found Gold Bar Spearmint to be super refreshing.
The most popular flavour in the Gold Bar range is Watermelon Ice, which is cool, refreshing and has just the right level of sweetness.
- Superb draw
- Great taste
- Good value
- Small flavour range
The UK and the EU have strong regulations around e-liquid which are designed to protect vapers. These include banning certain ingredients that may cause harm and requiring both e-liquid and devices to be tested for possible toxins. That’s one of the reasons why the UK government can say that vaping is at least 95% safer than smoking.
However, that recommendation applies to devices and e-liquid that comply with UK regulations. If e-liquid is not tested and submitted, we can not have the same confidence about its quality.
Many vapers who come to our shops to buy disposable vape devices had not previously realised that they can come in different nicotine strengths. That’s because many shops only sell the highest nicotine strength legally allowed (20mg).
If you are a heavy smoker, it’s generally best to use the highest strength available, as this is the best for satisfying nicotine cravings. However, at the same time, you don’t want to use more nicotine than you need. If you are a light or occasional smoker, you might want to try a lower strength, such as 10mg.
If you are well along the journey to weaning yourself off nicotine, you could even go for a zero nicotine option (available with brands such as Elf Bar 600 and VLTZ Bar).
Illicit disposables can cause many problems for both vapers and the vape industry itself. Fortunately, there are some clues that can help you to suss out whether a disposable vape is illicit or legal.
How much e-liquid does the device hold? If it holds more than 2ml, it’s not legal to sell in the UK. Even if it’s a well-known brand, it doesn’t mean it’s legal – it could be an imitation, and will almost certainly have been illegally imported.
How strong is the e-liquid? UK regulations mandate a maximum nicotine strength of 2%. If the strength is more than 20mg (2%), the device is being sold illegally.
Where are you buying it?
Most dedicated vape stores are keen to supply only legitimate products – after all, their livelihoods depend on it. On the other hand, some market stalls, pop-up shops and even convenience stores have been caught selling illicit vape devices. That’s not to say every market stall will break the law, but it does mean that buying from reputable vendors means you can have more confidence in the quality of your device.
(Do also note, if you look under 25 and your age is not queried, chances are the vendor is not following UK vape regulations.)
We look for brands that have an established reputation for quality. We do have the experience of years in the industry, which gives us a good idea of which brands can be trusted.
In addition, we ensure that every device is notified in the UK – this means that the details, including ingredients and the results of emission testing, have been submitted to the UK Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency (MHRA).
Disposable vapes have introduced many thousands of smokers to vaping for the first time. They can also be a great backup for experienced vapers who are at a festival, heading on holiday with only hand luggage or out for the night – anywhere where charging options are limited and you don’t want to be carrying spare chargers, e-liquids, coils etc.
But they’re expensive and aren’t the best choice for the environment.
1ml of e-liquid in a disposable vape typically costs around £2.50. It’s rare for e-liquid in a bottle to cost more than 40p per ml. Disposables are also much worse for the environment than reusable devices.
So while disposable vapes can be a great segway into vaping, there are other options that are more sustainable – both for the environment and your pocket!
It’s well worth looking at a simple vape starter kit. Designed for beginners with features like inhale firing and automatic power output, they have the added benefit of rechargeable batteries and the option of refillable pods and changeable coils – making them a longer-lasting investment.
If this seems like too much of a transition, rechargeable disposables such as the Aspire R1 make a great middle step. These devices feature a fixed coil but also have the benefit of a battery that can be recharged and a pod that can be refilled. Although you will still need to dispose of the device when the fixed coil burns out, they are still a longer-lasting option than regular disposables.
How long does a 600 puff disposable last?
The length of a disposable vape device depends on a number of factors, including how often you puff, how long you puff for, how hard you inhale and so on. That said, most disposable devices will last the average user about a day of use.
Which are the most popular disposable vapes?
The most popular disposable vape brand at the moment is Crystal Bar SKE. That’s followed by Elf Bar and Lost Mary - although Lost Mary is rapidly catching up with Elf Bar and could become the second most popular disposable vape range soon!
What’s the best value disposable vape?
The best value disposable vape is IVG 2400. While not the cheapest, its innovative design means it can hold 8 ml of e-liquid in a single device - 4 times as much as a regular vape device.
What’s the longest-lasting disposable vape?
Again, the longest-lasting disposable vape is the IVG 2400. That’s because the device contains four pods, and you can rotate between the pods, giving you four times as many puffs as other devices.
How long does a disposable device last?
Most disposable vapes state they last 600 puffs. However, the actual length of time it lasts depends on many factors, such as how long you puff for and the intensity of your puff. We find that for a light to medium vaper, most disposables will last around about a day, while the IVG 2400 could last up to four days.
How do I use a disposable vape?
Remove the device from its packaging. Remove the plastic packaging from the tip and the film from the bottom. Inhale.