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E-liquid guide: what are shortfill e-liquids and nic shots?

As a relatively new marketplace the vaping industry is continuously evolving. Even for more veteran vapers, the dizzying variety of vape flavours, e-liquid starter kits and vape stores can be overwhelming.

Whether you call them e-liquids, vape liquids, vaping liquid or e-cig liquid, at we've got the answers for you. In this post, we just want to answer one simple question: what are shortfill e-liquids? And what do they have to do with nic shots

What are e-liquids?

Before we address that question, in case you’re completely new to the world of vaping liquid vapour and want to know more about what the “e-liquid” part of “shortfill e-liquid” means, let’s give you the run-down. 

Known as e-liquids, vape liquids, e-juices and vape juices, e-liquids are fluids that are turned into vapour using specialised vape devices. In turn, this liquid vapour is inhaled by the user to replicate the process of smoking—that’s why some e-cigarettes are seen as an alternative to smoking. 

Since e-liquids boomed, we’ve not only seen new e-cig liquid categories like shortfill e-liquids, but also a massive array of vapour juice vape flavours. At we stock nearly 1,000 different e-liquids for you: all carefully curated, all delicious to vape.

Woman vaping | | Vape store

What are shortfill e-liquids?

The name of shortfill e-liquids goes some way to explaining what they are, and how their functionality differs from normal vape juices. Rather than filling the e-juice bottle to the top as is the usual practice, instead shortfill e-liquids are typically filled to about 80% capacity. 

Importantly, the e-liquid they contain is nicotine free—the extra space is for you to add a nicotine booster or “nic shot” to your container. Because of this, when you buy shortfill e-liquids they will come nicotine free. That might seem a little confusing, right? Let’s get into the reasoning. 

Why should I buy shortfills?

Why would people choose to buy nicotine free e-liquids, only to add their own nicotine later? Well, that comes down to legislation. The law in Europe and the UK states that only 10ml bottles of liquid containing nicotine can be sold, but since shortfill e-liquids are nicotine free these vape liquids can be stocked at any size. 

This means that the added nic shot will still be only 10ml, but shortfill e-liquids range from 50ml to 100ml in size, which is a huge volume increase for those looking to buy vaping liquid from a vape store in larger quantities. For vapers, this makes shortfills a much more convenient e-liquid option.

More simply, some vapers just wish to have a greater degree of control over the nicotine content of their e-juice. Vape devices are often sold on their modability, and in this sense, shortfill e-liquids are all part and parcel of the vaper’s hands-on approach.

Shortfill e-liquid | Nic shot | Six Licks | E-liquids

How to mix shortfill e-liquids and nic shots

All that’s well and good, but how easy is it to actually mix a shortfill e-liquid once you’ve got your e-cig liquid and your nicotine booster? Thankfully, the process is really simple, meaning making your own vapour juices has never been easier. 

To add your nic shot to your shortfill e-liquid, first remove the lid completely, including any inner caps. Then, add your nicotine directly into the e-cig bottle. To ensure you know exactly what concentration of nicotine you have, add either a half or a whole bottle to keep the maths nice and simple! We’ll give you an example below. 

Once you’ve put the cap and lid firmly back into place on your e-liquid, shake the vape juice bottle for a few minutes. That way the nicotine and the e-liquid solution will be well balanced. From then on, it’s as simple as vaping any other e-liquid, with the added bonus of the bigger bottle lasting even longer!

So, if you add an 18mg 10ml nic shot to a 50ml shortfill e-liquid, you’ll be left with an e-liquid that’s 60ml in total with a 3mg nicotine content (per 10ml), or 0.3% concentration. This is going to differ for each e-cigarette liquid bottle you mix, but you should get used to the maths quick enough!

Sub-ohm vape | Direct to Lung | Vape device

Learn more about e-liquids

At, if there’s one thing we know, it’s e-liquids. That’s why our vape store experts are on hand to answer any questions you might have over on our e-liquids contact page

When you buy e-liquids in our UK vape store, we want you to be as informed as possible. That way you’ll know the difference between nic salts, 10ml e-liquids, shortfill e-liquid, and nic shots. Vaping has never been easier, than with the best online vape store: 

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