How to Treat Eliquid Flavor Burnout or Vaper’s Tongue

Last updated on October 22nd, 2022

Are you Forgetting What E-Juice Flavor You Are Vaping?

You’re probably not losing your memory, (or your mind). You’re just experiencing the dreaded Vaper’s Tongue – the strange and unsettling sensation of losing your taste buds.

How to Treat Eliquid Flavor Burnout or Vaper’s Tongue

It’s not uncommon to experience a loss of taste, but since you’re probably here because you’re a vaper, I’ll stick to helping you solve e-liquid flavor burnout and vaper’s tongue syndrome.

Help! I Can’t Taste My E-Liquids

Don’t panic. Your tongue isn’t broken, and your taste buds haven’t abandoned you. Actually, this strange syndrome has more to do with your olfactory senses, or sense of smell. Unless you’re experiencing other symptoms, you’re probably not sick. Your brain has gotten so used to the taste of the e-liquid that it starts treating it like white noise and tunes it out. The result? Vaper’s Tongue!

Taste buds also get damaged. There are several causes including alcohol use, medications, having an infection, eating extremely sour or spicy foods and of course, smoking.

Fortunately, taste buds heal themselves, although they do get weaker as you get older, which is one reason why your taste for different foods change in the transition from childhood to adulthood.

Remember, the cells in your taste buds are on a constant cycle, dying away and then regrowing. This cycle can take anywhere from 10 days to 2 weeks.

So What Do I Do in the Meantime?

Many people who use e-cigarettes experience vaper’s tongue, but there are several ways to wake up your taste buds.

Try vaping a totally different flavor for a while; one that’s very different from what you’re vaping. If you vape sweet flavors, try something complex like Kind Juice‘s “Custard’s Last Stand” –  a butterscotch creme brûlée topped with a caramelized aged cognac glaze. Your taste buds will switch gears, and there’s a good chance you’ll be able to return to your old flavor in no time.

Here’s what Vaporfi, (the vape company that also produces over 30,000 flavor combinations), has to say about flavor burnout.

“Vaping can dry out your mouth and a thin film might form on your tongue. This film acts like a shield that blocks flavored e-liquid from reaching your taste buds.”

Strong flavors like mint, menthol or cinnamon can get through that film. Try it and see if that does the trick.

You can also try cleaning your teeth and mouth with bicarbonate of soda. Wait awhile, then try vaping your favorite flavor.

Smell the Coffee…Literally

Sniffing fresh coffee beans is supposed to clear the senses. Perfume and wine testers sniff coffee beans after sampling different aromas and flavors. Try it. It will usually help shake off vaper’s tongue. Who knows? Maybe coffee e-liquid will do the same thing.

Drink Unsweetened Lemonade

The tartness shocks your taste buds. Of course, this method works best if you’re not vaping lemonade e-juice.

Clean or Replace Your Atomizer!

Do you use a refillable e-juice tank? You may have dirty atomizer contacts. Buy new ones, or at least clean them.

Here’s an easy way to clean your atomizer heads

Lay Off the Ciggies

If you still smoke, quit smoking for a while. You’ll probably taste the difference, and who knows?…it could give you the push you need to make the full transition to vaping.

Mix it Up

I think prevention is the key when it comes to e-liquid burnout. You should mix up your e-liquids regularly. Have several vaporizer tanks or disposable vapes on hand and keep switching them out. Always use glass tanks instead of the plastic ones.

Here’s where to get the lowest prices on a wide range of vape tanks

Keep it Fresh

Another possible reason for loss of taste while vaping is that your e-liquids are getting old. As e-liquids age, flavors can degrade, sometimes leading to a peppery taste. This is one instance, where you might not have a case of vaper’s tongue at all, but simply need to get some new e-juice!

Remember, vaping is not only a smart alternative to smoking, it’s an adventure!

Have you experienced e-liquid burnout or vaper’s tongue? We’d love to hear about it! Please share your experience by commenting below.

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    • david redfern on November 8, 2017 at 12:09 am
    • Reply

    sorry it is nothing to do with the tongue the otherwise you would lose you taste for food. this is a manufacturer issue the only way to bring your ejuice back to life is adding diy ejuice add approx 1mm at a time until the taste comes back. keep a spare bottle of diy and top up as nessasary

    • Mr.GfCs on October 18, 2017 at 10:03 pm
    • Reply

    I started vaping about eight months ago. Started with knock-off’s of the EGO Style mods. The coils in those tinny tanks kept burning out in less than two days, so I took the plunge and purchased x5 Vaporesso Estoc Tank Mega Clearomizer’s.

    In the beginning, I could taste the flavors with these new tanks. I vape at 20W on average +/- 1W. The coils are sub Ω and are rated for higher Watts, but I don’t like the spit-back or hot vape.
    However, I’ve noticed that the flavor has all but vanished and turning into a kind of harsh hit at the beginning of the day.

    I bought the 5 tanks to have 5 different flavors throughout the day. But now, it doesn’t matter because there is no flavor. But I refuse to go back to smoking, after having quite for vaping after 40 years of it.
    Yesterday, I ordered a couple of Augvape Merlin RTA’s and Youde UD Goblin Mini V3 RTA’s along with all the stuff to do the building, with the hopes that by building and wicking the coils, I’ll get the flavor back. I sure hope I do. I just dumped $200 into it, just on gear.

    My next step would be mixing my own Ejuice. I’ve already got the glass Lab-wear for accurate mixing, but I’m not going to buy the liquids, until I know I will be able to taste it.

    Hope the new tanks bring back the flavor…

    • Dave on April 4, 2017 at 1:19 pm
    • Reply

    I was half smoking and half vaping for about 2 weeks. Once I was only vaping, a week later I tried an e-juice again and I notice there was pineapple in it. I never tasted that before. It was crazy that I didn’t even notice it before. I have also found that I used to love coffee flavors when I smoked and now I find them kind of gross. I am all about the sweet fruit vapes now. I honestly feel you can’t really judge the flavors until your fully off smoking.

    • Louisa on February 17, 2017 at 4:44 am
    • Reply

    I’m having the worst VT.
    I haven’t smoked one ciggie in 41 days, since getting my Smok Micro One with a Nautilus X tank.
    I can taste food and drink but not one of my ten flavours, no matter what.
    I’ve been like this for five days and am SO so so miserable. I am really close to getting some smokes ?
    I’ve tried every trick suggested, have set a two hour timer and not vaped but nothing has worked.

    1. Hi Louisa,
      Congratulations on going smoke-free for 41 days! Sorry you are having a bad case of VT. It is strange that you cannot taste any of your 10 different flavors. I’m wondering what e-liquid brand you are using, what VG/PG ratio you use and whether you order extra flavor shots with you ejuice. Sometimes high VG eliquids give you less taste. You are vaping a very good vaporizer and as long as you get good vapor using it with an Aspire Nautilus tank you should taste your vape. I’ll look out for your reply. Hope to see comments/solutions from other readers here too.

    • Anna on January 2, 2017 at 9:57 pm
    • Reply

    Ive wasted so many coils already thinking that my coils were burnt… Furthermore the shop owner lied and said not only Is it impossible to clean your coils (I know for a fact this isn’t true) but that any diminishing flavor means the coils are burnt and need to be replaced. I also know now that this isn’t true. I even purchased a better vape thinking that it was the vape itself. I think I’m just going to start smoking tobacco flavor. It’s not like I don’t enjoy the taste of tobacco and I don’t imagine it losing any “flavor.”

    1. Hi Anna,

      Some coils can be cleaned easily (those top and bottom coils where you can see threads). The newer coils really cannot be cleaned by washing and need rebuilding or replacing when your vape starts tasting burnt. If you are experiencing diminishing flavor, it could be, as you suspect that your e-juice flavor or brand is inferior, or perhaps you are setting your vaporizer wattage/volts too low or setting the airflow too high. Maybe you need a more powerful vaporizer. Best of luck.

    2. Hi Anna,
      Thanks for leaving a comment and for inspiring me to write an article on How to Stop your E-cigarette Atomizer Coils from Burning before their time.

    • Steve V. on April 28, 2016 at 12:00 pm
    • Reply

    I have experienced vapors tongue when I first started vaping. I prefer a fruit and menthol mix but I was also using Ignite brand liquid. Throughout the years, I found the Tasty Cloud Co. and their flavor Dragonaire. If you like fruit and menthol mixes, it is on par with Pluto from Space Jam.

    • Elisabeth Dunn on February 22, 2016 at 11:05 am
    • Reply

    Thanks for all the input. I’m experiencing vapors tongue now. I’m drinking water and already, my juice is more flavorful. I’m still confused about steeping. The woman at the vape shop is all about steeping your E juice. Instead of this process being a nuisance, I look at it like an adventure so i don’t have a bad experience with vaping. Also, anyone know much about nicotine levels and flavor output?!!!!
    Next, I’m going to change from vanilla delight to zesty lemon lime with a hint of menthol. Thanks again,


    1. Elisabeth,

      Here’s what you’re looking for regarding how nicotine affects the taste of your eliquids – How Nicotine levels affect the taste of e-cigarette flavors

      Regarding steeping – Check out this post on Why Steeping ELiquid Creates the Best Flavor

    • Josh Finck on February 16, 2015 at 4:39 pm
    • Reply

    This article brings up some very interesting points; vape tongue is a growing problem in the vaping community, but a lot of this information is outdated! It’s not normal for a vaper to lose taste after vaping ejuice, it most likely points to a lesser quality product. There’s companies like Sensory Solution, that are attempting to educate the masses about this vape tongue epidemic while creating products for companies that eliminate vape tongue entirely; this needs to be the new standard of e-juice. I personally vape, and only buy brand name products and even then i also get the ‘vape tongue’, there needs to be more standards set so that we know what we are putting in our lungs. I quit cigs about a month ago, 15 year smoker, and have never turned back, but NOT knowing what I’m putting in my lungs now is worse than before.

    1. Hi Josh,
      Thank you for contributing here.

      The most reputable eliquid companies disclose ingredients in their ejuices so you do know what you are puttiing in your lungs. Also, many companies are now tested for purity by third part labs. See my review. Of course, no one knows the long term effects of vaping. We only know the long term effects of smoking tobacco and you do know what you are putting in your lungs if you smoke a tobacco cigarette.

      As for Vaper’s Tongue, it’s not a disease, although you are correct in saying some eliquids are better than others. Vaper’s tongue is a sensory side effect from overloading your tastebuds with the same flavor. It can happen with food too, not just vapor.

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