Are they worth picking up?
The juices from the Halo Salts line are all enjoyable, with accurately-replicated flavors and well-crafted juices all-round.
While it wasn’t my favorite of the bunch, the quality of the Virginia Tobacco is the best example of why these juices are great: it captures the essence of tobacco well enough to please smokers but the flavor is artfully-crafted so it avoids the issues with many e-liquid tobacco flavors.
If you vape with a pod system, and especially if you’re based in the EU, it’s a fantastic line-up of juices, and you won’t regret picking any of the flavors up, especially for the great price of £4.49/$5.60.
Salt nicotine e-juice is becoming more and more common these days thanks to the proliferation of pod-style devices. These e-cigs work at much lower powers than traditional mods, but salt e-juice allows you to use higher nicotine strengths without it getting too harsh to vape, allowing pod devices to be a satisfying option even for even just-switching smokers. So it’s not much of a surprise that long-standing brands have been increasingly putting out their own salt e-juice lines, and E-Cigarette Direct’s Halo is one of the latest examples. With six flavors on offer in 20 mg/ml nicotine strengths, and a great price of £4.49/$5.60 for a 10 ml bottle, the juices are a tempting offer for anybody with a pod-style device, but are they really that good? We’ve taken a look for our Halo Salts review to find out.
Packaging and Design
The Halo Salts juices come packaged in little boxes, just big enough for the 10 ml bottles and with the name of the flavor, the nicotine strength and nicotine warnings displayed prominently against the dark blue backdrop. Inside, you’ll find the bottles along with a little leaflet (the kind you find in medicines) giving some basic information about the e-juice contained within. The bottles themselves have solid childproofing and well-presented labels containing much of the same information as the outer boxes, along with a batch number and an expiry date.
Design-wise, the bottles and boxes do a great job. The handwritten-style “Halo” logo features prominently on both, with appropriately-colored text for each flavor (e.g. “Manic Mango” is orange, “Summer Strawberry” is a soft red and so on). The boxes have the dark blue background with a white logo, while the bottles have a reversed color scheme, along with the same blue on the caps. Overall they look good, as well as getting across all the key information you need.
The fact that the Halo Salts juices are nicotine salt liquids puts some limits on what you can expect in terms of mixing options. They’re designed to be high-strength when it comes to nicotine, and because many pod systems only have comparatively limited wicking ability (vs. sub ohm tanks), higher-PG is the best approach for this type of juice.
The juices follow this blueprint well, with 20 mg/ml (2.0 %) being the only available nicotine strength and a 50/50 PG/VG mix as standard. The EU’s TPD really limits what they can do in terms of nicotine (since this is the maximum that’s legally allowed to be sold by EU-based companies), and it also prevents them from offering bigger bottles. For the PG/VG ratio, the chosen mix works well in terms of both throat hit and vapor, but the main concern is wicking, and they do work just as you’d hope on a range of pod-style devices.
Overall, while there aren’t really any options when it comes to mixing, the choices they’ve made are perfectly matched to the intent of the juices.
Halo Salts Review – The Flavors
Classic Virginia – Rating 4/5
Accuracy: This is a pretty self-explanatory tobacco flavor, shooting for the complex flavor profile of Virginia tobacco with touches of brighter, sharper tones on top of the base flavor. The juice actually does a great job of hitting on these key flavor notes – which is pretty unusual for a tobacco e-liquid flavor. The tobacco base is good – albeit not perfect, which no tobacco e-juice really is – offering a multi-tonal, slightly smoky and broadly accurate representation of the flavor of tobacco, but the extra touches really take it to the next level. They’re quite gentle, but do add a zesty, almost faintly citrusy touch to the overall flavor profile.
Overall: This is a really good tobacco e-juice. You wouldn’t mistake it for genuine tobacco, of course, but it does a great job of balancing some elements of realism against the inherent challenges of creating something that actually tastes like tobacco. The extra flavor notes almost purposefully take it away from a 100 percent accurate replication, and that makes the whole juice work better than most tobacco e-juice flavors. If you’re looking for a tobacco e-liquid, this is a fantastic option and definitely one to try.
Menthol Blast – Rating 4.5/5
Accuracy: Menthol Blast, as the name suggests, is not one for the faint of heart, described as “deeply cooling” and “icy.” And it really doesn’t disappoint if you’re looking for a powerful menthol. It’s very cooling, hitting your throat with a punchy, ice-cool blast of menthol immediately. The menthol itself is really good, it has a slightly sweet tone to it but overall it’s a pretty straightforward menthol flavor with an impressive kick. It’s exactly what you’d expect from a juice called Menthol Blast.
Overall: This is an exceptional e-liquid if you’re into strong menthol. I used to smoke menthol cigarettes so I know that a punchy menthol is really important if you’re making the switch, and this juice achieves that goal in style. I’ve been vaping for around 7 years now, though, and it’s a little too powerful for me after spending most of that time with dessert e-liquids. That said, if you’re a menthol vaper or smoker, it’s one of the best options I’ve tried in the area.
Blackjack Twist – Rating 3.5/5
Accuracy: Blackjack Twist is named after the classic sweet, promising a smooth yet full-bodied aniseed flavor topped off by a touch of sherbet on the exhale. The result is very accurate to the taste of Black Jacks, with a strong aniseed note hitting you right away, and clearly evoking memories of the tongue-blackening treat from many British kids’ childhoods. If you enjoyed the sweets, you’ll love this juice. The sherbet on the exhale is subtle, pretty much drowned out by the blackjack flavor, but it does add an extra touch of color to the overall flavor.
Overall: This one is great if you love aniseed, but expectedly not one to pick up if you’re not a big fan of the flavor. It really lives and dies on this point, due to the impressive accuracy of the replication. The sherbet does differentiate it a little, but it isn’t prominent enough to really take much away from the core flavor. For me, I enjoy the flavor but it’s quite bold and not one I can vape for too long at a time – I had a pod full of it and I’d switch it out for something else after a couple of hours during tasting. It’s good, but definitely not one for everyone.
Summer Strawberry – Rating 5/5
Accuracy: Summer Strawberry is billed as a sweetened strawberry, kind of like a strawberry candy flavor. The juice itself does a great job of capturing this, with the fruity elements of the strawberry flavor coming through strongly and clearly, easily identifiable and very true to the taste of the real fruit. There is a clear candy element too, with an overriding sweetness on top of the strawberry flavor that adds to the natural flavor of the fruit. It definitely accomplishes what it sets out to as a flavor.
Overall: This is probably my favorite juice from the bunch. The strawberry is really well-captured and the additional candy elements really help it go down smoothly. It really works because neither element really comes across too powerfully, but both components are easy to pick up with every puff – you get what you’re looking for, but it’s soft enough to keep vaping at length without it getting boring. It’s a definite all day vape for me, and highly recommended.
Manic Mango – Rating 4/5
Accuracy: This is described as a rounded and smooth mango flavor, and “intriguingly creamy.” The execution here is great: the mango comes through clearly throughout your draw, and it definitely comes across as rounded and smooth. The mango itself is really well captured, and it’s pretty unmistakable as the key flavor of the juice. The creamy notes don’t really jump out at you, but the smooth nature of the flavor does give it the character of a mango and cream e-liquid.
Overall: This is another really tasty e-juice from E-Cigarette Direct’s Halo brand. The excellent mango replication really does most of the heavy lifting here – it’s so accurate that if you enjoy mango it’s pretty much impossible to dislike the juice. The smoothness of the flavor keeps you coming back for more, and makes it a potential all-day vape despite the fairly strong and sweet characteristic flavor. Overall it’s a great e-juice and the flavor comes through well enough for even basic pod systems. The only criticism is that it’s pretty one-note, but if you like mango that’s not much of an issue.
Blueberry Burst – Rating 4/5
Accuracy: Blueberry Burst is a mixture of blueberries and bilberries – a European blueberry – that aims to balance sweet and tart fruity tones for a mouthwatering e-juice. The juice really captures the blueberry flavor perfectly, with the distinct taste of the fruit hitting you straight away, being strong enough to pick up right away but maintaining a subtlety in the flavor. It does a good job of balancing sweetness and tartness, with the sweetness dominating but having a slightly sharper undertone that helps your tastebuds stand up and take notice.
Overall: I’m usually not too big on blueberry flavors, but this juice really won me over thanks to the relative subtlety of the flavor. It’s accurate, and if you are a big blueberry fan you won’t be disappointed, but the gentle sweetness makes it a viable option even if it isn’t usually your thing. The blend of two types of blueberry seems to be more style over substance (I think if you could pick up both varieties you have some seriously impressive tastebuds) but it’s hard to argue with the results: it’s a great e-juice that accomplishes exactly what it sets out to.