Mouth to Lung (MTL) vs. Direct to Lung (DTL) Vaping: Differences


When researching the market to look for a vaping device best suited for you, there are a couple of factors to consider They can range from aesthetics to the specific type of vaping device You need to understand these before choosing a device that is perfect for you.

Out of all the things to be considered, a couple of terms you might have come across in the market are 'DTL' and 'MTL. They're both essential to understand as they play a major role in your vaping experience.

These terms are used to better describe the type of vaping experience a vaping device offers. They allow you to better define the nature of inhaling that each pod cartridge or atomizer tank creates.

Difference between MTL and DTL vaping

Credit to Wotofo

What is Mouth to Lung (MTL) Vaping?

As the name suggests, MTL, also known as Mouth to Lung vaping, is the method of vaping where the smoke made from the vaping device is inhaled from the mouth and then into the lungs.

Due to the nature of this vaping style, it feel more like smoking a cigarette. This is why MTL vaping is considered the perfect starting point for any beginner looking to get into vaping.

What are MTL Vape Kits?

Special vape kits are designed for vapes specializing in MTL vaping. These are primarily because vaping devices following this style of inhaling require coils that have a higher resistance than normal.

The measuring unit for resistance is Ohms, and MTL vapes need coils with a minimum resistance rating of 1 Ohm to operate efficiently.

It works because coils with a higher resistance tend to vaporize the vape juice in the tank at a cooler temperature, resulting in thinner smoke. This makes the device perfect for MTL vaping since the thinner smoke resembles the density of cigarette vapor, giving beginners a familiar sensation.

What Vapes are Best for MTL Vaping?

Due to the influx of such a wide variety of vapes that have flooded the market, choosing the right one has become tricky. However, keeping certain factors in mind will allow you to choose the best MTL vaping device best suited for your needs.

When researching the market for the best MTL vaping device, the three essential factors which you need to keep in mind are:

  • Proper airflow
  • High coil resistance
  • Cigarette resembling mouthpieces

low resistance coils vs high resistance coils

Which Vape Juice is Best for MTL Vaping?

If you are looking to invest in an MTL vaping device, then it is encouraged that you look for a vape juice that contains a high ratio of PG, also known as Propylene Glycol.

This is because e-liquids containing PG can give you a smooth throat hit, making it the best option for beginners and enthusiasts of MTL vaping.

Although looking for an e-liquid with an equal ratio of PG to VG is ideal, the next best alternative is to go for a PG-rich vape juice.

However, if you are looking for that same smooth hit but with more nicotine kick to it, you should consider looking into nicotine salts, as they provide the same smooth hit along with higher than-normal nicotine content.

What benefits of MTL Vapes?

  • They are very simple to use and cheaper, making them the perfect option for beginners.
  • MTL kits consume comparatively less e-liquid, making it the more cost-effective option
  • Its resemblance to cigarette smoke makes it a good option when transitioning from smoking.

What is Direct Lung (DTL) Vaping?

Also known as 'sub-ohm' vaping, DTL, or direct to lung, it is an inhaling style involving the smoke going directly from your mouthpiece to your lungs.

The DTL style of vaping is suited more towards experienced vapers. This is because the smoke produced is comparatively more dense, which takes a little getting used to. However, it makes for much thicker clouds.

What are DTL Vape Kits?

Like MTL vaping, the varying nature of DTL vaping requires a specialized kit. Unlike the coil used for MTL kits, however, the other inhaling style requires coils with a resistance rating below 1 ohm.

This is because low-resistance kits make for coils that can warm the e-liquid at a hotter temperature, resulting in warmer vapors that are much denser.

What Vapes are Best for DTL Vaping?

Just like with MTL vapes, there are certain characteristics that you are required for a premium DTL vaping experience.

 When looking for DTL vapes in the market, you need to look for the following:

  • Vapes with less flavor as they result in vapor which goes directly into your lungs
  • High-wattage vaping devices
  • Sub-ohm coils as they offer less resistance

Which Vape Juice is Best for DTL Vaping

Because Direct to Lung vape kits produce a much denser cloud of vapor, it is recommended to go for e-liquids that are of low nicotine because you will be getting a comparatively stronger hit due to the increased smoke produced by DTL vapes.

Regarding the PG and VG ratios, even though the best-case scenario is to get vape juice with an equal VG to PG ratio, the next best alternative should be VG-high e-liquids.

This is because investing in a vape juice that contains a higher amount of PG could result in a much harsher throat hit, especially in the case of DTL Vapes.

What Benefits of DTL Vapes?

  • DTL vape kits offer more customizability
  • They produce thicker vape, inhaling more smoke with each puff, allowing you to utilize low-nicotine flavors.
  • DTL coils create warmer smoke which is generally smoother

MTL vs DTL: Major Differences

Mouth to Lung (MTL)


Like the name states, MTL vaping is when you take a short puff off of a device into your mouth and then inhale. This style of vaping is the most similar to old fashioned cigarette smoking and it’s perfect for users who are new to vaping. A lot of standard DTL vape devices with sub-ohm tanks produce more vaper than most new users are capable of handling.

That's why you end up with people coughing like crazy when they try a vape device for the first time, their lungs aren’t used to that much vapor production. MTL vapers enjoy small condensed clouds of vapor that tend to be more flavorful than DTL clouds due to a tighter airflow chamber.

A good example of an MTL system is the Mojo Disposable Pod Device. This Pod device is designed for new vapers with its simple draw activated firing, and lends itself well to MTL style vaping.

Direct to Lung (DTL)

Direct to lung style vaping is the standard form of vaping for most veteran vapers. DTL vaping is when you fully inhale the vapor clouds while firing the device. This provides a hearty vape cloud that has a similar throat feel to taking a long drag from a cigarette. If you’ve been vaping on pod systems but you still aren’t satisfied with the taste it might be time to step up to a DTL sub-ohm system.

There’s a vast plethora of DTL systems out there, since it’s the current standard for most of the vaping world, but one of the best DTL devices on the market has to be the SMOK Stick V8 Kit. It’s essentially the model T of the vaping world as its one of the cheapest and most reliable starter kits on the market, even now, several years after its release.

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