Blu Cigs Review

By Lindsay Fox Posted February 21, 2016

Blu’s name is now illustrious, but the e-cigarette itself wouldn’t strike you as having big tobacco funding. There are many positive points about the e cig, but the battery life and nicotine levels aren’t the best for heavier smokers or vapers.

Blu Cigs Electronic Cigarette
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Editor Rating

3.8/5

User Rating

2.3/5

81 User Reviews »

Pros

  • Great vapor performance
  • Smart Pack with "Social" feature
  • Excellent portable charging pack
  • Seven well-executed flavors
  • Smoke juice made in the USA
  • Propylene glycol-free cartridges
  • 24 Hour customer service

Cons

  • Cartridge flavor gets weaker after around 150 puffs
  • Battery life is too short
  • Nicotine content not enough for heavy smokers
  • No noticeable throat-hit
  • Larger batteries and manual options would have been useful

Bottom Line

Lorillard backing hasn't soured the product quality of Blu’s e-cigs, but ironically the product doesn't offer enough to more hardcore ex-smokers. The battery life, nicotine levels and throat hit fall a little short, but the flavors, vapor production and portable charging case provide enough to satisfy more casual vapers.
Price: $42.99

Blu eCigs Review: Editor's Opinion

Blu Cigs Review

blu eCigs is no longer the North Carolina start-up it once was. After being purchased by Lorillard (manufacturer of cigarette brands like Newport and Kent), the brand is now synonymous with the increasing role of “big tobacco” in the e-cig industry. blu electronic cigarette was chosen by the company because they have a pretty solid reputation, so it’s still a consideration for smokers looking to make the switch and vapers alike.

 

After being bought out by Lorillard in April 2012, blu’s president Jason Healy wrote a blog post addressing their new “life with big tobacco,” promising the same commitment to the vaping community and a continued dedication to quality in their products. He admits that there are some challenges to working with such a huge company, but talks down the negative aspects as merely the result of increased regulations and protocols. Regardless of the level of truth in that statement, how blu eCigs progresses is of great interest to the industry, since few e-cig companies boast the financial might of big tobacco. The only worry is that it’s now all about profit and no longer about the vapers.

 

The Premium 100 Starter Kit ($69.95) comes with a portable charging case (with the infamous Social Feature), two Premium 100 batteries, a five-pack of cartridges, USB charger and wall adapter, or alternatively you can pick up the PLUS Rechargeable Kit ($42.99).

 

 

Packaging and Design

 

The Premium 100 kit comes in a minimalistic black box, adorned with blue and white text and an image of the charging case. The design is purposefully sleek, and whilst it achieves its goal, the lack of an opening and closing clasp makes it a little harder than you’d like to actually get into the kit. When you’ve removed the top you’re greeted to the sight of the charging case, a cigarette-packet like case with the company name and the blue triangular logo on the front. It sparks into life as you open the pack, the logo lighting up and a three LED display on the side tells you how much power you have left. Underneath, you’ll find the manual, cartridges, chargers and a USB cable for topping up the charging case.

 

Blu Cigs Premium 100 Starter Kit

 

The portable charging case has a USB slot on the bottom, meters to show the case’s level of charge and the cigarettes level of charge and the “Social” button on the side. Inside, you’ll find a charging slot for a battery, a slot to store another battery and spaces for five cartridges. You don’t need to screw anything in to set the battery to charge; a pretty useful feature which avoids unnecessary fiddling.

 

Blu Cigs Starter Kit Review - Blu Smart Pack

 

The “Social” feature, however, which vibrates when the case detects the signal of another user’s case or a nearby blu eCigs vendor, seems like it will be of little use in most situations. Locating a vendor might be useful (if you run out of cartridges unexpectedly and happen to be near a seller, that is), but the notion of approaching somebody just because they use the same brand of e-cigs seems unusual. The box would vibrate, which means a fellow vaper is nearby – then what? Do you look around for the stream of vapor and approach them without a second’s thought? Of course you wouldn’t – you’d be too afraid of making a mistake and looking like some kind of brand-obsessed maniac – “Hi, my blu Cigs charging case just vibrated – do you use blu too? No… Oh… My bad.” On a more positive note, the case does slip comfortably inside your pocket.

 

The original blu Cig was a three-piece model, with a separate atomizer and flavor cartridge, but since 2011 they’ve switched the industry standard two-piece design. The new e-cig is a lightweight, cigarette-sized device with a thin golden band separating the cartridge from the battery. The Premium 100 cartridge is actually longer than most you’ll find, meaning that they can offer the equivalent of around a pack and a half of cigarettes. The black models are more high-tech and futuristic in appearance, but the white option looks much more like a traditional cigarette. Both types of battery have matching cartridges, with realistic speckling on the ones for the white battery. There are little images to tell you which cartridge you’re vaping – as an example, there is a little pipe graphic on the tobacco cartridges and an ice-cream cone on the vanilla.

 

Nicotine Levels

 

You have the choice of four nicotine levels with blu Cigs, no nicotine, Low (6-8mg), Medium (9-12mg) and High (13-16mg). There is potential there for managing down your nicotine intake, but the strongest cartridges aren’t likely to be enough for heavier smokers. With the uncertainty in the quoted values, the biggest nicotine consumers could end up with a 13mg cartridge, which is far from ideal. Most manufacturers offer a maximum of 18mg per cartridge, with some offering up to 24 or even 36mg. If you’re a heavy smoker, there are definitely better options elsewhere for nicotine levels. The uncertainty in the quoted levels is irritating, but since a frequent complaint from those who want the technology banned is that there are minor variations in nicotine content, this is actually a fairly up-front and commendable admission.

 

Flavors and Vapor

 

The vapor production is pretty good with the blu eCig, but as the battery wears down you will notice a dip in performance. On a fresh charge, you’ll produce a satisfyingly thick cloud of vapor; enough to satisfy the sensory craving but not a big competitor with the best brands for vapor production. When the battery starts to wear down, you need to give several priming puffs to get a decent amount of vapor. Sadly for the more hardened smokers, the throat-hit isn’t very noticeable at all with the blu eCig – it’s more like a smooth hookah than a hard-hitting cigarette.

 

Blu Cigs Flavor Cartridges

 

This is because blu has teamed up with Johnson Creek Smoke Juice for their flavors. This is an excellent agreement to come to, since Johnson Creek are respected e-liquid producers operating out of the US, but comes with an important caveat. The e-liquid Johnson Creek produces for blu is 100 percent vegetable glycerin (VG, for short), because some people are allergic to propylene glycol (PG), which ordinarily forms the bulk of the liquid. The reason it’s used is that PG creates the smoke-like throat-hit many smokers are looking for, and some VG is usually mixed in because it tastes better. This pretty much sums up the issues and advantages of the flavor and vapor with blu – the flavor is excellent but many smokers (and vapers) won’t be satisfied with the sensation.

 

They may only offer seven different flavor options, but they’re all well-crafted and the majority manage to replicate the intended tastes pretty perfectly. It’s worth noting that Johnson Creek produces the flavors exclusively for blu, so if you’re already a fan of theirs you won’t be getting the same liquids you’re used to. On the whole though, they are robust in flavor, with the Cherry Crush and the Vivid Vanilla being amongst the best options. The cherry has a delicious warmth to the flavor that produces an amazingly accurate representation, making it one you can happily vape all day.

 

The Classic Tobacco flavor is a very enjoyable take on the taste, but if you’re looking for a good replication this is the only one that’s a bit of a let-down – it’s just a little too sweet to really capture the flavor. Again, this is likely because of the VG base, but it’s a bit of a shame given that there’s only one tobacco option available from blu. For menthol smokers, the Magnificent Menthol is great, striking the balance between strength in flavor without being overpowering. Another important point to consider is that the flavors dampen somewhat when you’ve had around 150 puffs, sometimes leaving you yearning for a new cartridge to get the flavor back before you’ve even worked through it.

 

Battery

 

Blu eCigs Battery Review

 

This is the main area that holds back the e-cig, and it is another flaw which hits chain-vapers and heavy smokers hardest. You’ll find that you need to charge the battery after around two hours of heavy use. The manual claims that the Premium 100 batteries last for 150 puffs on a full charge, and the Premium batteries only offer 100 puffs. Even under these ideal conditions, that would only be equivalent to around a 10 pack of cigarettes for the Premium 100 battery. Also, you’re unlikely to get that many satisfying puffs out of a single charge. It’s hard to over-state how much of a downside this really is, since most smokers will get through something around a pack a day, which means almost everyone using blu will need to take their spare (and charging case) along with them at all times.

 

On the plus side, charging is quick, and with the charging case it’s pretty easy to take a spare with you. The USB charger and charging case work as expected, with clear LED lights to tell you when it’s charging and when the battery is ready to use. Longer batteries would have been a really useful option, even if they detracted from the cigarette-like size.

 

Manufacturing and Warranty

 

The build quality of the blu eCig seems excellent, with the “CE” and “RoHS Compliant” marks proudly displayed on the exterior of the starter kit. They impose their own rigorous tests, with an independent quality control team patrolling their facilities every day to ensure only the very best in manufacturing. There were no problems throughout our testing (aside from the capacity of the batteries, mentioned above), and the financial might of Lorillard backing them is likely to mean this will only get better. We didn’t even notice a problem with e-liquid leaking from the mouthpiece tip, which is a pretty common issue with e-cigs. The performance may not be up to scratch in some respects, but the manufacturing quality is without question.

 

You’re covered for defects in the electronics for up to one year (not covering cartridges and disposables, of course), as long as you fill in a form and provide proof of purchase. This is a little more limited than what’s offered by other companies such as Green Smoke e-cigarette or V2 eCigs, but still a decent offering (since a manufacturing defect would likely show itself pretty quickly). When you’ve filled the form in it may take a couple of weeks to process your replacement, however, which is far from ideal.

 

If you’re looking for high quality beginner starter kits and high performing vape pens, this list of the best vape pens is worth checking out. And if you’re looking for something more powerful, this list of the best vape mods for clouds offers suggestions for hard-hitting ecig mods.

 

Editor Rating

Packaging & Design5/5

Flavor4/5

Vapor4/5

Battery2/5

Overall3.8/5


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Overall

The blu eCigs Premium 100 package is a very good effort overall, but there are some key issues that hold it back. The batteries can’t hold enough of a charge to last you for a day of vaping, and there aren't any options for things like manually operated or longer ones. For heavier smokers or vapers, this combined with the low nicotine levels makes the e-cig pretty unsuitable. Strangely, one of the only companies with big tobacco backing doesn't actually offer an e-cig that meets the needs of hardcore tobacco smokers. However, if you’re a more casual smoker you’ll find that the delicious flavor profile and smooth draw make the blu Cig very appealing indeed.

All User Reviews

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Average Rating

(81)
2.3 out of 5 stars
  1. Walt Smith

    Tanks leak and blu sucks and they ignore my complaints.

    I just sent them my 4th complaint with the first 3 being ignored. I am going to do what I can to cost them business. I may even take a course on hacking web sites and see if they ignore me then.
  2. PB

    Repeatedly sent me defective batteries.

    The first 2 batteries I ordered arrived dead. Would not accept a charge. Replacements received were also dead. 2nd set of replacements also dead. Customer service happily sends replacents but now that 30 days have passed since the original order they won't issue a refund, so I am now awaiting the THIRD set of replacements! They need to reexamine their refund policies and improve quality control.
  3. Thomas Hughes

    2016 Blu is Better than the Past Years

    I recently bought a New 2016 Blu Disposable and was AMAZED at how much BETTER it was that the past products from Blu. I had originally Liked Blu when it came out around 2006 or so but I found that many of their tanks for the rechargeable unit were Duds...

    After the disposable I bought the new 2016 Blu Plus kit that was 11.99 just a batter and charger and one tobacco tank... The New Tanks have 23 holes for Better Draw and Man oh Man these babies are 2.4% Nicotine... I LOVE IT!!! Just like smoking that I QUIT 10+ years ago!!

    The NEW Blu is Outstanding so far... No I do NOT work for Blu and I do NOT promote products that Suck but these New 2016 Blu e Cigs have come a long way.. Much Better Hit... To me (after years of not smoking) the Wonderful Feeling of 2.4% Nicotine with my Drink is Awesome!!

    The new Plus Batteries seem to work much better and last longer but the Best Part now is the Tanks (which are only sold 3 to a pack for $15.00) are Truly GOOD HITTING E-Cig disposable tanks... These babies are No Joke.. True Feeling of Smoking my Old Kamel Red Lights..

    Thanks for Giving me the ability to Enjoy Nicotine again!!
  4. P. Brown

    Worst product/customer service experience ever.

    I've been using Blu's disposables for a long time, and while they're kind of pricey, I found a local wholesaler who sold them at a discount so I bought them a box at a time (12 disposables). I've racked up almost 10,000 Blu Nation points, in-fact I'm just 410 points from Pack Leader status, whatever that means. One thing it means is that I've purchased at least two hundred of their products, considering that some did not include a rewards code. You might think I'm a customer they'd want to retain, but my recent experience shows just the opposite. I decided to try their rechargeable ecigs so I bought the blu PLUS+ Rechargeable Kit, but unfortunately the charger was defective so I called and they happily sent out a replacement charger. Unfortunately, when I tried to charge the two batteries that came with the original kit, they too were defective and would not accept a charge. When placed in the charger the light immediately changed from red to blue indicating a full charge, but when I tried to use them, they died after one puff and flashed repeatedly. The second puff produced no vapor and no blue light at the tip because they were depleted. After repeating this cycle several times it became apparent that they were either old stock or a manufacturing defect. For a second time I called customer service and they apologized and cheerfully sent out replacement batteries. The replacements were just like the first ones, DOA, so I called a third time and went through the same process again. At this point it had been weeks since I ordered the kit and I still hadn't been able to try the cartridges, so I bought some compatible batteries on Amazon and found the "tanks" as Blu calls them were okay. Not great, but good enough. When the fourth set of replacement batteries arrived DOA I called and asked for a supervisor. I explained the situation for the fourth time, and indicated that I would not accept any more replacement shipments. I wanted a refund or credit equivalent to the price of two batteries. I was told that refunds were only given during the first 30 days, despite the fact that that entire time was taken by repeated defective shipments. The best they could do was offer me 500 points. When I told them that was not adequate because it was only worth five dollars, their excuse was that they are in a regulated industry. Really Blu? Do they regulate your refund policy as well? So I told them that after all the frustration and wasted time and inadequate compensation, I would have to find another brand. You'd think that would matter to them considering what a loyal customer I'd been, but all they could do was offer more apologies. The fact that their warehouse was clearly continuing to ship defective products didn't create much of a stir, as each time I reported the issue it received the same response. I even sympathized with the CS reps on a couple of the calls about having to take all the calls from unhappy customers who got dead batteries, but they always acted as though I was the only customer having this problem. Frankly that strains credibility to the limit. So it's goodbye Blu, and hello to another brand. I'm thinking of trying Green Smoke which I've heard good things about. To those of you still smoking Blu, if you get a defective product return it for an immediate refund. Do not accept a replacement. Hopefully you'll never have an experience like mine.
  5. Kirk McGahey

    Needs to be more affordable

    I love the Carolina Bold tanks, great smoke! However, going from regular cigs @ $3-$5 per pack per day to 3 tanks a day ($15) means a monthly expense going from $90-$150 per month to $450.

    It doesn't take a math genius to understand that using this product is simply not sustainable long term.

    I bought a vaping device and that's working great, but the form factor isn't conducive to travel or social situations. So...I use both.

    Would prefer the Blu be more affordable, in line with traditional cigarettes.

    Quality needs to improve, some tanks leak, wouldn't be a big deal if they didn't cost $5 a piece.

    Very difficult time finding the product at local stores, so I typically buy mail order. Fins are cheaper and taste ok, but finding them outside of Walmart is problematic. Vuse sucks.

    Otherwise the Blu packaging, case and USB chargers work great, addressing the short battery life adequately. I have about 4-5 batteries laying around. I really want to continue using the product but it needs to be more affordable and more available.
  6. Mieti

    Smmoooth

    Love the inhale
  7. Toni Nagy

    Way too expensive. No cherry flavor (which was my preference) Tastes metallic!

    Waste of money.
  8. PAULA SMITH

    BIG BIG MISTAKE

    I HAVE USED THE BLU CIGS SINCE DAY ONE I LOVE THEM...THE NEW PLUS NASTY NASTY NASTY NASTY NASTY. I'M DONE UNTIL YOU BRING BACK ORIGINAL MENTHOL AND CLASSIC TOBACCO I AM DONE
  9. Rebecca Reynolds

    Great for beginners and who were who were light sm...

    I am addicted to nicotine and I decided to try Blu E Cigs. I found it hard to chain vape as I kept getting massive headaches on the high nicotine refills. So now I vape for 5 minutes once every hour. It satisfies my nicotine craving without having to chain vape. I have 6 refills left and then I am going down on the nicotine level refills. I only vape cherry crush! I used to smoke between 3-8 cigarettes a day and this high nicotine level is a little much. I can’t wait to buy refills that have lower nicotine. This is simply amazing and a God send for me. The only problem is the plus battery doesn’t last long if you chain vape for 30 minutes straight. I am going to upgrade to their newest and best battery pack. Please try this out if u are currently a smoker and you smoke a pack a day or more get the 2.4% nicotine refills. Good luck to all smokers who want to quit. I’m probably one of the youngest people to vape as I am 21 years old. Anyways, recommended highly for anyone!
  10. Mike

    its the closest to a real cigerette !

    I don’t understand these negative comments I have been reading about Blu ecigs. I really don’t these lame geeks are talking about ! Bottom line, if u want a desent smoke that’s closest to the real thing get Blu !!
  11. Tom

    New Flavor is Disgusting

    Their new “tobacco” and “cherry” flavor both awful. Chemical taste, bad tongue feel. Probably got cheaper stuff to make more money, now not worth the cost.
  12. Terry Glisman

    The new tanks taste like a burnt cigar

    I have a regular blu and loved the classic tobacco cartridges but blu just had to go and change. I could not buy the cartridges anymore that I liked so I ordered the blu plus. The tanks taste nasty. I don’t like blu anymore.
  13. Roger Scott

    Poor quality control

    I have used Blu e-cigs for about 6 months now and am currently actively seeking a better alternative. My biggest problem with the product is the tanks start oozing the nicotine juice fairly quickly. Some as soon as just 30 or 40 puffs after starting the tank. This results in an extremely uncomfortable experience when I inadvertently get the juice on my tongue. I have contacted Blu four separate times about this problem and they always assure me that they are working to solve it and always offer to replace the defective tanks at no charge. However, not being able to predict with any reliability when the tank will run out or go defective has soured me on the product. I do not recommend it at this time.
  14. Mick

    Love the flavour, but...

    As one reviewer has already pointed out, “Battery life will never last long enough , the cartiges hardly ever work.” That has also been my experience.

    I bought the starter kit that has a standard USB charger, two batteries and three cartridges. At first, I was hugely impressed, as this is the first kit I’d bought that managed to keep me off the evil weed for a whole evening with a drink in hand – which, as we all know, is the time when we’re most likely to light up.

    The Classic Tobacco flavour may not be for all – of course, tastes will vary – but I really did enjoyed it, and didn’t find myself yearning for a roll-up.

    The problem came when I bought replacement cartridges: they had virtually no flavour, nor did the next lot. In addition to that, after only a handful of charges, the batteries would only last for an hour or so of intermittent vaping.

    It does seem an awful shame that their chemists – or Johnson Creek Smoke Juice’s chemists, if the info above is up-to-date – can come up with such a great taste, only to have it ruined by an otherwise awful product. For blu’s sake, I hope that they manage to re-source their awful components; otherwise, I think they’re doomed.
  15. Darren

    Plus 6 hole design is great.

    The new Blu Plus tanks with the 6 hole design is great. The flavors are amazing. I will say I wish the battery lasted longer but it’s something I’m willing to give in trade of their small size, quick recharge time, and the handy recharger “pack”. No offense when I say this but it will sound offensive just to simplify my thoughts: I don’t have to look like an dick carrying a vape the size of a Walkman or even worse actually BE a dick because I want to be able to blow more second hand vape smoke out than a volcano emitting smoke. I think it gives the new and teetering industry of vaping a horribly negative view by non vapers and a point of negative media/remarks when your using a vape that’s just unnecessarily excessive in the amount of smoke you exhale. I mean even a cigarette smoker doesn’t blow as much out as a lot of vape devices so it’s hard to justify it by saying something like “I was just such a hardcore 3 pack a day smoker that the only way I could switch to vaping is by being able to take a hit that makes me look like Mount Vesuvius exploding.” I smoked about a pack and a half a day and it did take a little craving in the beginning to switch down to just the Blu experience but after a couple of weeks I was fine. If we get banned from vaping in public places I’ll forever rightly or wrongly blame vapers that use huge devices to gush smoke like a fog machine. Even if blu isn’t your thing there are harder hitting devices that are still discrete. I can hit the Blu for instance in public and if I try to be discrete hardly anyone will notice. Vape for your health. Vape in your house however you want. Please don’t hurt all our reputation and the future of the industry by being a douchebag and fogging up a whole bar.
  16. Darren

    Blu Plus 6 hole is a huge improvement

    The 6 hole blu plus is a huge improvement over their initial line.
    “Vape with respect. Everybody and most bars don’t want “cloud chasing” smoke machines. So vape for you and leave bystanders out of YOUR experience. All most folks see are noxious fumes in their face.” Don’t let us become the louder than needed exhaust style motorcycle riders of the smoking world. Respect the populous.
  17. Sammy G.

    Worst. Ever.

    Bought their disposable e-cig because my usual brand cartomizer was out of stock. Wow. Lasted about an hour. Really??? $12 for an hour of smoking? Flavor was poor, inhale impact poor, and top that with one hour of performance. I far prefer vaporizers, but have bought other disposable e-cigs in a pinch. Never had one perform this poorly. Blu is clearly coasting on marketing hype and snookering a lot of people with it – poorest quality product I’ve been duped by in a long time.
  18. Richard

    Don't waste your time and money

    If your trying to quit smoking this is not the right system for you. These styles of e cigs don’t work like a normal smoker will want them too. Trust me. I made the mistake and I don’t want to see others do it as well. I tried blue myself and spent lots of money chasing something to satisfy my craving, this will never work like you want it too. Battery life will never last long enough , the cartiges hardly ever work. Your best bet and smarter thing to do is take that money down to your local vape store and set yourself up with a nice “mod” a box is the best. You now have tons of flavors to choose from as well as nicotine levels, they don’t leak and you can control the amount of vapor and throat hit you desire. After many atempts and a lot of wasted money that’s what I did and I’ve never looked back best money I have ever spent. I have no desire to smoke another CIG again. Please trust me on this you won’t regret it. Oh and I was a 2 pack a day smoker and I rarely have to charge my battery during the day.
  19. K.G.

    Too Expensive, Not Worth the Price

    When I quit smoking I loved blue ecigs and the vivid vanilla cartridges (especially the 100 cartridges). As time went on, I feel the products and customer service went down. I have over 3,900 rewards points and not one reward is an ecig product, which I hate. Products are too expensive for the value. I’m going to try something else now. Get your act together blu!!!
  20. patricia

    flavors not lasting long

    I recently bought the new blu plus but everytime I smoked one of the tanks and I always would get liquid in my mouth when I inhaled. I still buy them because I do like their flavors. But the carts do not last long I smoke the cherry carts and after about 50 puffs the flavor tasted burnt I was constantly changing the carts so in reality I really was not saving that much money. I do like the tanks but they are costly 15.00 -16.00$ per pack and there is only 3 tanks which do not last long and I was not a heavy smoker but I sometimes go through 2 tanks per day along with 1-2 tanks so it is very expensive it almost costs me as much as a pack of butts. a pack of butts would last me 2-3 days
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