“An extremely satisfying ecig at an extremely affordable price.“
About the company
Smoke Relief is dubbed as “America’s Number One Electronic Cigarette“. Despite this bold claim, we were unable to find out very much at all about the company itself!
In the UK, Smoke Relief products are distributed exclusively by The General Trading Company (Europe) Ltd, who provided us with samples of their deluxe starter kit and mini starter kit. The guy we spoke to at TGTC (Bill) was very knowledgeable and accommodating and we were very impressed with the assistance he provided.
The main trading name of The General Trading Co is JD Harris and as well as Smoke Relief, they also run finefittings.co.uk and verseo.eu.
About the product
The Smoke Relief Electronic Cigarette Mini Kit consists of one battery (the white part), two cartomizers/filters (the orange part) and a USB charger (for recharging the battery). In addition, there are also an extra 5 cartomizers (not pictured).
These are packaged together in a cardboard carton with a Styrofoam insert, which has four slots in it (one for each component).
A single Smoke Relief cartomizer provides enough liquid for around the equivalent of around 20 regular cigarettes, so in this kit you get roughly 140 cigarettes-worth of e-liquid.
Cartomizers are available in zero (0mg nicotine), low (12mg nicotine), medium (18mg nicotine) and high (22mg nicotine) strengths. As well as tobacco, there are also several menthol, cherry, cappuccino, vanilla, apple and peach flavours available.
This starter kit costs just £9.95 to buy and a refill pack containing 5 cartomizers (equivalent to around 100 cigarettes) is available for £5.95.
Our review was conducted by a panel of five tobacco smokers and one regular electronic cigarette user. Our panel had already tried Smoke Relief’s ecig before when we reviewed their Deluxe Rechargeable Starter Kit, which retails at $29.97 but has loads more features.
The starter kit we used for testing was 18mg strength and tobacco flavoured.
All the components of the Smoke Relief Mini Kit were contained within an authentic look and feel cigarette carton. The outer packaging is cardboard and the inner packaging is Styrofoam, making it extremely lightweight and the dimensions are almost identical to a regular pack of cigarettes (although it is a bit heavier when the battery is in there). In addition, the carton is wrapped in transparent shrink-wrap, which must be removed before opening.
The realistic cigarette carton was very appealing to a couple of members of our panel, who felt that it would make the leap between smoking tobacco and smoking ecigs a little more comfortable.
However, the downside to the inexpensive, lightweight packaging is that it is not particularly durable and becomes tatty, squashed and torn within just a couple of days of carrying it around in a pocket although this is not a major problem as this kit is designed to be an affordable introduction to electronic cigarettes. If a user decides to continue using them, they can either purchase Smoke Relief’s rechargeable hard plastic case or simply carry just the ecig around without any box.
When we opened the carton, we were confronted with all the components of the kit. On the left-hand side there was a battery (the white part of the ecig) and two cartomizers (the yellow part of the ecig) and on the right was a USB charging dongle.
The battery screws into the USB charger and can then be inserted into a computer/laptop or similar device and left to recharge for a couple of hours.
Once charged, we connected a cartomizer (like the USB dongle, the cartomizers simply screw into the battery) and tried out the ecig.
When the cartomizer is sucked, one end of the battery glows red whilst the other end releases vapour, which is inhaled.
Both the taste and throat hit of the Smoke Relief ecig were exceedingly pleasant and our panel unanimously agreed it was very good – not quite a s good as the Liberro ecig but not too far off either (about the same as the Pulse ecig).
In fact, the Smoke Relief Mini-Kit is almost identical to the Pulse Starter Kit in every way, except it comes with an extra 5 cartomizers and is a few pence cheaper.
As with most ecigs, the weight of the battery means that it is difficult to hold it between the lips without using your hands, which may be a little bit of a bugbear for some smokers that want to move to electronic cigarettes.
Another potential problem that may be encountered is that there is only one battery in the kit, which means that when it runs out you will have to wait a couple of hours without a nicotine hit whilst it recharges. There is also no way of recharging the battery other than via a USB socket. Of course, this kit is intended for curious smokers to try out ecigs inexpensively, so may perhaps be a moot point.
Things we liked about this product:
- Realistic-feel cardboard packet
- Amazing price
- Great taste & throat-hit
Things we didn’t like about this product:
- Only one battery
- No method of charging other than USB
- Durability of the packet
As you can see, we struggled to find fault with The Smoke Relief eCigarette Mini Starter Kit.
Most of the downsides are simply due to cutting down features to allow the kit to be such tremendous value for money.
Our entire panel agreed that the price of this mini-kit is simply fantastic. We know of no other ecig manufacturer that provides so much for less than a tenner – similar kits we looked at only contain two cartomizers.
And at such a great price, you’d be forgiven for thinking that the smoking experience wouldn’t be all that great but our panel can testify that the taste, throat-hit and smoke volume are all very good indeed. Plus, the lightweight cardboard packaging and the end of the battery glowing red whilst sucking make smoking these ecigs about as similar to smoking real tobacco as possible.
One member of our panel commented that these similarities with regular cigarettes would make her more inclined to try out ecigs because it would be congruent with her habit.
Another member of our panel has successfully stopped smoking tobacco altogether with the help of Smoke Relief.
So, if you are a smoker and want to give ecigs a try, you’ll struggle to find a product that is better value than the Smoke Relief Mini-Starter Kit.