IQOS | Smoking Device Review | Feedback From A 25-Year Smoker

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Wiki  |  Updated 10/05/2018
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I am a long-time smoker. I started smoking at the age of 15. And, dang it, I counted and it’s a disaster — I had been smoking a pack a day for more than 25 years! Except for the last year and a half. Just in the summer of 2016 I switched to IQOS.

It all started when my friend, a former pathologist, quit smoking by force of will 7 years ago. He was telling me terrible stories about his post-mortem examinations of smokers and seeing their black lungs coated in black tar. He forced me to read Allen Carr five times. Nothing worked. I tried smoking e-cigarettes. But whether there is little nicotine or a huge glass tube failed to mimic the sensation of smoking, all that didn’t help. I kept on smoking conventional cigarettes anyway.

The smoker's morning cough. My “smoker's morning cough” was the final straw. From the outside, it was heard very well but I was always having excuses, saying that I probably caught a chill. Then, having realized that I could not be daunted, he remembered that there was such thing as “vaporizers” for drug addicts and started searching whether the Chinese hit upon the idea of inventing a similar cool stuff for tobacco.

As it turned out, it was not crafty and entrepreneurial Chinese who came up with that idea but the Swiss! Philip Morris himself decided not to miss us, those who determined to quit smoking, but provide us with a safer alternative.

Of course, one may argue that they aren’t that noble :). I have already got hooked on Icos, smoke a pack of sticks per day. The tube started malfunctioning every six months and a new one has to be purchased. So, it becomes a costly affair. But in our case, heavy smokers unable to quit smoking by force of will, this is the only safest for lungs option at the moment.

The point is that it contains nicotine. Whereas there is neither burnt paper nor tar which settle in lungs and are the most dangerous.

First impressions of iQOS Cigarette

To conduct our first test, we went to IQOS mobile unit in one of the malls. To be honest, I didn’t believe that I would like an option without puffs of smoke, burnt paper and burning bitterness in the mouth after inhaling. I thought I would try it and say: “Thanks, but too little of nicotine” and would quietly go outside to smoke a conventional cigarette. But. I had a smoke. I said: “Thanks, I'll think about it” and went round the shops. And what do you think? I had no desire to go out to smoke a conventional cigarette! I calmly wandered around the mall for two hours. Then I assumed it was random. I went back to the mobile unit and I had a smoke again. And again that was enough for two hours. So I gave up and purchased my first IQOS smoking device.
equipment iqos: photo

SMOKER, ALWAYS REMEMBER THAT USING EVEN THIS KIND OF TOBACCO IS DANGEROUS FOR YOUR HEALTH. CIGARETTES ARE ADDICTIVE.

Two months of living with IQOS cigarettes: the taste of tobacco, cough and tar

Taste sensations from tobacco are a bit strange: a sourish flavour. Unusual but one habituates to it. Glad that Philip Morris IQOS makes heatsticks (cigarettes) in Switzerland from normal tobacco. I hope that they will go on producing IQOS heatsticks there and will not shift production to other countries where cheap tobacco can be muddled.

It tastes sourish but feels like smoking a pipe or cigar, with just tobacco being burnt, not the paper. Its aroma is cool as well, the taste of a good pipe tobacco. Very subtle. That is why it can be easily smoked both at home and in the company of other people. This smell does not annoy non-smokers in no way.

But above all is the taste in your mouth! No stink, no bitterness or irritation.

Cough. Once I started smoking IQOS cigarette, my smoker’s morning cough has immediately gone away.

The first two months I always carried a pack of conventional cigarettes in my bag. But it was of use just a couple of times when the IQOS heatstick was running low. Then I purchased a second IQOS cigarette.

Conventional cigarettes. A couple of times I tried to resume smoking conventional cigarettes but it really sucks now! It seemed like a horde of jerboas had just pooped in my mouth. I felt like I was stinking tobacco myself. Fingers stank as well. Anyway, I have got a sense that I do not enjoy it anymore.

What does the filter look like? No burnt paper. Little tar. When evaporated, all the tar remains on the tobacco wrapping paper where the tobacco comes into contact with the heating element. Look at a picture below — these are three broken sticks where you can see that even the middle of the filter is slightly yellow. While outside the filter is paper white.
What does the filter look like: photo

What are the downsides of IQOS?

The major downside is its high price. Over the course of year and a half I threw away as many as 3 IQOS cigarettes. One set ended up with a broken lid. In the second set, a stick broke while in the third one, it went blunt. Generally, the main problem of IQOS smoking devices is in its sticks (the heating element) going blunt too quickly (approximately in six months) that cuts through tobacco in the stick. When blunt, it doesn't cut through tobacco anymore but, instead, squeezes it.

Humidity. If it is dry around, tobacco in the cigarette does not burn to the stick and can be easily cleaned with a brush. However, in case you have got into a country with the high level of humidity, tobacco and tar harden and have to be cleaned with an iron stick out of the device. When we went on holiday to the United Arab Emirates, I had a hard time. While normally I clean the cigarette once a week, there I had to do it on a daily basis! It is such a hassle! Since I was constantly cleaning it with an iron stick, not a brush, the heating stick has eventually broken.

My verdict:

Yesterday I left it at home and had to bum a cigarette. You know, after the first whiff, I said: “God bless Philip Morris that invented IQOS.”

Where Can You Buy IQOS Smoking Devices?

IQOS heat-not-burn tobacco product is available either in IQOS stores or mobile units at partner’s stores. By the way, here in London, the fourth IQOS Philip Morris store was opened in High Street Kensington in February.

Now, where IQOS smoking devices are commercially available?

  1. Prices for IQOS cigarettes (kits) are about €120 - $150
  2. Prices for IQOS accessories range from $9 to $69.

I was curious to know where else IQOS cigarettes can be purchased and the list I found is really impressive! The list includes the following countries: UK, Germany, USA, Australia, Canada, Bulgaria, Croatia, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, Czech Republic, Poland, Romania, Denmark, France, Greece, Cyprus, Italy, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Portugal, Spain, Switzerland, Andorra, The Canary Islands, Turkish Cyprus, Monaco, Canada, Curacao, Colombia, Guatemala, Israel, Japan, South Korea, New Zealand, Palestine, Kazakhstan, Russia, Ukraine, Serbia, South Africa, as well as in some Duty Free shops.

SMOKER, ALWAYS REMEMBER THAT USING EVEN THIS KIND OF TOBACCO IS DANGEROUS FOR YOUR HEALTH. OF COURSE, YOU SHOULD BETTER QUIT SMOKING.

How Do IQOS Heat-Not-Burn Tobacco Products Work?

IQOS smoking device works by heating tobacco and is based on 3 key elements – an IQOS heatstick, IQOS holder and a charger. The heatstick which is a heated tobacco unit should be inserted into the IQOS holder. the latter has an electronic heater inside.

The heating process is initiated easily, just press a button. The used heated tobacco unit should be removed from the IQOS holder and thrown away in a garbage bin. You will also have to recharge the holder from time to time. To this end, just connect it to the charger. The tobacco plug is intended specifically for heating and is produced from ground leaves of tobacco which are subsequently pressed in. A special heating blade which is controlled by electronics heats the tobacco. Temperatures are very high, about 350°C. At the same time, the level of temperature is automatically monitored so that the taste doesn’t alter. Besides, IQOS cigarette is protected from overheating. This function can be disable though.

How long does it take heat to reach the heated tobacco unit? Fourteen puffs or about 6 minutes. You might find it problematic recharging the IQOS holder as it should be done each time the unit is heated. However, there is a bigger battery which is sufficient for about twenty times. In order to charge this battery, plug it into a power outlet at home or whenever such opportunity is provided.

How Is IQOS Smoking Device Different From Other Cigarettes?

The idea of IQOS heat-not-burn tobacco product is that the tobacco is heated just to the extent sufficient for emitting an aromatic vapor containing nicotine. But for all that the tobacco isn’t burnt, which is a crucial point of the operation of IQOS cigarette. The temperature level is twice as less as that in a conventional cigarette, which is why the latter releases dangerous chemicals while IQOS smoking device does not. Instead, IQOS heatsticks ensures the true taste of tobacco. So, IQOS cigarette is smokeless but releases nicotine vapor.

Meanwhile, IQOS cigarettes should not be confused with electronic ones which are also promoted as an alternative to combusted cigarettes. IQOS smoking devices resemble e-cigarettes and both of them operate from batteries. The difference is that electronic cigarettes vaporize a liquid containing nicotine and mimic smoking, whereas a heat-not-burn tobacco product vaporizes real tobacco. That is why when smoking IQOS, you deal with a tobacco product that heats but doesn’t burn tobacco.

TOP 5 IQOS Accessories

This iQOS review will help you choose proper accessories for your heat not burn cigarette. A special cleaning liquid is indispensable for maintenance both of a cigarette itself and the cleaning brush where the tar normally remains. Given that you deal with an appliance, protective cases are needed for the pocket charger and the battery pack. Using them, you will avoid scratching, rusting and getting dust on iQOS. Another item, an iQOS cigarette holder, is actually a must-have accessory for anyone using this smoking device.

Cover for IQOS Pocket Charger

Since you need to recharge the device from time to time, take care of the charger. The best way of doing it is to purchase a case protecting the unit from dust and scratches. This product by KW-Commerce is perfectly suited to the task. Made in fine imitation leather, the cover ensures necessary protection. In addition, it is convenient as you can place there not just charger but heets and cleaner as well.
Cover for IQOS Pocket Charger: photo

It has a reliable lid and magnetic closure. It is also convenient due to an open port allowing to charge IQOS cigarette without removing the charger from the case. You can carry this IQOS cigarette case with you anywhere, attaching it wherever you like with a carabiner ring. This is particularly essential when a person is on a trip. Due to a special transparent window, it is easy to check the charging status of the device. Moreover, you can press the buttons without obstruction while the charger is in the case.

The product is available in black and dark brown colors. It is 9 x 5.3 x 1.9 inches in size with the weight amounting to 1.6 ounces — quite a lightweight and portable stuff. Still, the product has not received reviews on Amazon.com yet.

Price: ~$16.90 Check for current price

Hard Travel IQOS Case For Battery

This case is intended for RAVPower 22000mAh battery pack and ensures protection from dust, scratches and water. In addition, it is shockproof, which is a very helpful product property. The IQOS case is 7 x 3.7 x 1.7 inches in size, with the weight of 13.6 ounces.
Hard Travel IQOS Case For Battery: photo

When choosing the case for a battery pack, you should better be guided by the battery’s model rather than the dimensions of the case. “The case I have for the RAVPower 22000 mAn is listed as large. The battery pack fits very well in the case, with room in the top for a few cables. I have several other cases of various sizes for other items. If you have a different model battery pack order by full model name, not the size description,” a customer on Amazon.com suggests.

The case is very popular on Amazon.com. It rates 4.5 out of 5 stars, with 80% of customers giving the product five stars. Buyers say that the product is strong enough to ensure protection and, at the same time, is convenient to store and perfectly fits RAVPower 22000mAh battery pack. Based on the customers’ experience, it is safe to say that the zipper is very sturdy and reliable.

Price: ~$9.99. Check for current price

iQOS Cigarette Holder
iQOS Cigarette Holder: photo

A cool and stylish stuff! According to the seller, this item provides an easy access to major controls and ports. Since the iQOS holder case is made of silicone, it is soft and flexible. This item is white while other colors, blue and green, are also available. The IQOS cigarette holder is portable and lightweight, being 6 x 4 x 0.2 inches in size and weighing just 0.96 ounces. There is no reviews on Amazon.com yet but rest assured that this IQOS holder is a must-have for any IQOS accessories kit.

Price: ~$9.99. Check for current price

GiQ Holder Charger for iQOS
GiQ Holder Charger for iQOS: photo

This device is a very convenient way of charging your IQOS cigarette, just insert it in the device and wait for a while. And bingo! You may keep on using the fully charged IQOS cigarette. According to the seller, it takes from 3 to 5 minutes to charge the unit. Another essential advantage is that the charger is fireproof. The downside of the product lies in the need to connect the device to a power source to make it operate. It is 5.7 x 4 x 1.4 inches in size and weighs 2.88 ounces. No reviews regarding this item have been left so far on Amazon.com.

Price: ~$25. Check for current price

The Cleaner Exclusive for IQOS

Maintenance always matters. Especially when it comes to devices. And doubly it is important for devices that touch your mouth! That is where this cleaner comes handy for any iQOS user. It is developed exclusively for iQOS and should be used not only to clean cigarettes but the brush as well in order to avoid tar remaining on the cleaning brush.
The Cleaner Exclusive for IQOS: photoWhat kind of effect the Cleaner gives? Apart from cleaning the tar off, it removes odors, protects from rust, sterilizes and it is antistatic. The cleaning liquid itself is odorless and, therefore, it does not affect the taste of iQOS cigarettes. At the same time, the stuff is absolutely safe for people and does not stain or spoil metals. Nor do it have negative implications for the environment.

Now, how should you use this cleaning liquid? First, spray the brush approximately three times. Secondly, turn the brush and let the solution penetrate. Thirdly, remove the dirt. Fourthly, insert the holder and clean it. Fifthly, wipe off with a cotton bud.And, finally, clean the brushes.

Price: ~$14.99. Check for current price

Comparative Chart: TOP 5 IQOS Accessories

Product Type Price
Cover for iQOS Pocket Charger
Cover for IQOS Pocket Charger min: photo
Protective case for the charger ~$16.90
Hard Travel iQOS Case For Battery
Hard Travel IQOS Case For Battery min: photo
Protective case for the battery pack ~$9.99
iQOS Cigarette Holder
iQOS Cigarette Holder min: photo
Protective case for cigarettes ~$9.99
GiQ Holder Charger for iQOS
GiQ Holder Charger for iQOS min: photo
Charger for cigarettes ~$25
The Cleaner Exclusive for IQOS
The Cleaner Exclusive for IQOS min: photo
Cleaning liquid ~$14.99



Some Interesting Facts About Philip Morris IQOS

As there are ongoing disputes over weather iQOS smoking devices are harmful to people or not, it was the US government body that decided to draw a line under iQOS USA issue. In January 2018, the Food and Drug Administration advisory panel agreed that iQOS cigarettes “significantly reduce exposure to harmful or potentially harmful chemicals.” However, the panel highlighted that it did not imply that using Philip Morris iQOS reduces the risk of tobacco-related diseases. The problem is with the company that failed to present relative data confirming a harmful nature of this product. It was decided that iQOS still release toxicants but their level is much lower than that of conventional cigarettes.

For its part, Philip Morris insists that iQOS will save 90,000 human lives over the course of 20 years. There are 3 reasons the company refers to. First, iQOS produces less harmful chemicals. Secondly, when switching to iQOS smoking device and simultaneously ceasing smoking regular cigarettes, a person exposes herself or himself to a lesser risk. And, thirdly, scientific researches have confirmed that quitting smoking regular cigarettes and using instead the iQOS alternative really reduces exposure to dangerous substances.

However, last year, a study was presented at the American Heart Association’s Scientific Sessions, showing that despite lower person’s exposure to chemicals, the vapor produced by iQOS cigarettes has the similar negative impact on blood vessel function as smoking conventional cigarettes. So, be careful and do not perceive iQOS smoking device as a completely safe option.

Smoking kills, no matter how successfully it is marketed.

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Comments
Mike 2018-09-07 14:36
0
You get the satisfaction of a cigarette but you feel better rather than no energy, coughing, hurting throat and lungs. The fact that the filter stays white is visual evidence that it is way less harmful. E cigs just dont give me the satisfaction I am looking for. The IQOS is the real deal!!!
Cape Town 2018-08-28 14:28
0
You should come visit South Africa. Our prices for IQOS is around R1000 and included is a whole carton of sticks. That is around $70 or 60 euros. Love my IQOS!
Mario 2018-06-16 20:55
0
I'm a smoker too, since 15 years, used to some 1 pack a day, and some stressful days with 1 pack of cigarillos. recently I also swapped to IQOS and my experience is pretty the same. no matter of what studies says...I fell much better now smoking IQOS compared with regular cigarettes times. my wife also changed. this is just much better than normal cigaret's.
Dennis 2018-04-12 16:04
0
I appreciate all of your input on the IQOS cigarette, you were very informative. Like most people, I like to do a fundamental analysis of a product before investing. This seems like a good product for a smoker to transition to, thanks!
colpelis 2018-03-22 06:20
0
Muy buena esta página me gusta por su buen contenido