When Were Disposable Vapes Invented?

When Were Disposable Vapes Invented?

Vaping has been around for more than a few years at this point, but it’s still quite common to believe it’s a recent trend. Learning more about the history of disposable vapes can be quite an eye-opening experience, helping you see the development of vaping and discover just how long vaping has been around.

If you’re someone who likes to learn more about the devices they use, here’s what you need to know about the invention of disposable vapes and vaping as a whole. 

vaporizer from the 1960s

Key Takeaways

  • The advent of vaping stretches all the way back to 1927 when the first patent for a vaporizer device was filed. 
  • Many more patents were filed as inventors sought ways to enjoy flavored vapor or nicotine vapor without having to smoke. 
  • Hon Lik is credited as the father of the modern vape, creating what would be the first commercially successful vaporizer device that models the products we see today. 
  • Other companies have run with Lik’s ideas, creating their own vaporizer devices and continuing to innovate. 

When Did Disposable Vapes Come Out?

The history of the disposable vape is a muddled one, with so many gradual introductions along the way that never necessarily resulted in tangible products being released to the public or widespread adoption. That being said, the first mention that we can find about the use of disposable vapes can be traced all the way back to 1927.

the invention of vaporizers vaping by Joseph Robinson

Joseph Robinson, an American inventor, filed a patent referencing an electronic vaporizer that somewhat models the devices of today, although his invention never saw commercial production. While he was the first, there were many other steps taken on the way to the invention of the modern disposable vape. A few other highlights in the history of the disposable vape include: 

Timeline of Vapes Throughout History

  • 1963: Another inventor, Herbert A. Gilbert, designed and produced a vaporizer device that would emit flavored vapors as an alternative to smoking cigarettes. He also designed his device to produce certain effects by using various flavors to target weight loss. However, the large size of devices due to technical limitations prevented it from really succeeding. 
  • 1979: 1979 saw the production and commercialization of a nicotine vaporizer designed by Phil Ray and Normal Jacobson. It wasn’t a success, but it did bring us closer to vaping as a popular method of nicotine delivery.
  • The 1990s: The 1990s didn’t bring anything particular of note, but there were more patents filed throughout this decade for vaporizer devices that will ultimately lead to the next major development we’ll cover below. 

Hon Lik - The Inventor of the Modern Vape

Hon Lik is who we’d refer to as the father of the modern disposable vape, creating the design and functionality that would spawn an entire industry. In the wake of his father’s passing due to lung cancer, Hon Lik embarked on a journey to create an electronic cigarette that would act as an alternative to cigarettes. His efforts would prove fruitful in 2003.

Hon Lik - the inventor of vaporizers

Ruyan Vape - The First Disposable Vape 

The device referenced above was called the Ruyan and was sold by Golden Dragon Holdings. Ruyan vapes first emerged in China and Canada, quickly spreading to the U.S. and Europe as it grew in popularity. Unlike attempts in the past, the Ruyan vape was so successful because of its design and nicotine delivery. But how did it work? What was the secret formula that made Lik’s device better than the rest? 

Ruyan Vape

Design and Components

The Ruyan benefitted from lithium batteries, a compact, tube-like body, and a blend of nicotine with vegetable glycerin and propylene glycol. Whereas other devices simply couldn’t deliver nicotine efficiently or were much too heavy and difficult to use, this slim device that mimicked the effects of cigarettes quite well was much more popular with consumers looking to either quit cigarettes altogether or try something out that seemed much less harmful than inhaling smoke throughout the day.

When Was Vaping Invented?

Strictly speaking, vaping was invented when the concept was first introduced in 1927. Less officially, ancient peoples throughout various cultures may have found a way to vaporize substances without having to smoke them, incorporating them into various rituals. However, evidence of this is rather scarce, and making an argument that one culture technically “vaped” before the concept we know today was born would be quite difficult. 

Disposable vapes have been out for a while, at least two decades in regards to more modern solutions and even longer before that when it comes to less successful commercial products. It seems that we as humans will always find a way around obstacles when we really want to engage in a certain activity!

Back to blog

Leave a comment

Please note, comments need to be approved before they are published.