Riptide Ripstick Review | Tobacco Free – Benzoic Acid Free

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Last updated on August 11th, 2019

Riptide Ripstick Review title image

Is the Ripstick Really One of the Best Closed System Pod Vapes?

Nictech, the makers of the Riptide Ripstick ultra-portable Pod Vape calls their device the “next generation in nicotine experience”. 

I soon learned that this statement is not just flashy promotional bravado. The nic juices in the Ripstick’s pre-filled pods are like nothing I’ve experienced in any other pod vape. 

Nictech uses a different formula of e-liquids – one that is tobacco free and benzoic acid free…and it tastes great.

The Ripstick device is also well designed – lightweight and very ergonomic. Just charge it, attach a pod and vape.

Here Are My First Impressions of the RipTide Ripstick

Disclosure: For the purpose of this review I received a complimentary Riptide Ripstick Bundle from International Vapor Products. As always, my comments and recommendations are my own.


  • Ergonomic and Easy to Use
  • Tobacco-Free Nicotine
  • Benzoic Acid Free
  • Battery Holds a Charge for Over a Day
  • Pods Last for 1-2 Weeks
  • Very Economically Priced

  • All Five Flavors Are Either Tobacco or Fruit. So Far, There Are No Savory or Dessert Flavors
  • E-Juice Window is Large, But a Bit Hard to Read

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Tobacco Free Nicotine?

No tobacco symbol

Tobacco Free

The Riptide Ripstick Kit is called a TFN bundle that includes your vape pod pen and 2 pre-filled e-juice pods. TFN stands for Tobacco Free Nicotine. 

With most e-liquids (including most nicotine salts) the nicotine is extracted from the tobacco leaf.

Methods of nicotine extraction vary – some require heat, others use cold extraction. 

Read: Cold extraction of nicotine used in organic e-liquids

The nicotine is then added to the e-liquid. 

Riptide Ripstick pods contain nicotine, but the formula does not contain any tobacco. 

Riptide is Also Benzoic Acid Free

No Benzoic Acid symbol

Benzoic Acid Free

Traditionally, nicotine salt formulas include benzoic acid, a common food preservative. This additive keeps your vape from becoming too harsh. 

The Ripstick gives you a flavorful vape (even at high nicotine levels) without the need for nic salts or benzoic acid. I found the taste to be smooth and flavorful.

Overall Design of the Riptide Ripstick Pod Vape

Riptide Ripstick in man's hand

The Ripstick Feels Comfortable in Your Hand

Weighing only 27 grams, and only 93mm in length, the Riptide Ripstick is ultra-portable and feels great in your hand. It has a smooth, rubberized coating and all edges (including the mouthpiece) are rounded. I much prefer it to cold metal pod vapes with sharp edges.

There are no activation buttons or temperature settings. You just charge the 380mAh Battery, pop in your pre-filled NicTech pod and vape.

Riptide Ripstick parts inside box

Riptide Ripstick and USB Charger in Box

The Ripstick Bundle comes in a compact box that includes a black battery, a micro USB charging cable and a user manual.

Your 2 pods come in separate boxes since you get to choose the e-liquid flavor and nicotine level for each pod. 

More About the Pods

Riptide Ripstick pod showing bottom

The Ripstick pod has a silicone cap at the bottom that needs to be removed before use.

You can order your Ripstick pods with either 2.4% or 5.0% nicotine. Each pod holds 1.4mL of NicTech’s TFN unique e-juice. 

Before you insert your pod into the battery you have to remove the mouthpiece plug at the top of the pod and the silicone cap at the bottom of the pod. 

There is large e-juice window on the pod, but the dark color of the window makes it a bit difficult to see the level of your e-liquid. I suspect the color was chosen to blend with the overall design of the Ripstick.

Charging the Battery

The Riptide Ripstick battery comes about 30% charged, but it only takes about a half hour to get a full charge. You’ll know it’s ready when the white indicator light turns off.

I was able to vape about 2 days before my battery needed re-charging. That’s pretty good, since I did vape throughout the day. Of course, if you chain vape, you’ll deplete the charge faster.

How Does the Tobacco Free Nicotine and Absence of Benzoic Acid Affect the Taste?

Riptide mint flavor pod and box

Ripstick Mint Disposable Pod

I first tested the Mint 2.4ml nicotine level and wondered whether the lack of benzoic acid would give me a harsh vape. 2.4ml always gives me too strong a vape. Well, I found it to be surprisingly smooth.

I understand how Nictech can omit benzoic acid from their e-liquids, but they don’t really tell you how they formulate their tobacco free nicotine. One can only speculate that the nicotine is extracted from a different plant base, or it is synthetic, (which is not uncommon).

Riptide Tropical flavor pod and box

Ripstick Tropical Disposable Pod

In any case, both my Mint flavored TFN e-juice and Tropical flavor blend were rich tasting and

In any case, all flavors rich tasting and very smooth. The throat hit was a bit stronger on the 5% nicotine level flavors. 

One or two pods didn’t fire, so I covered the mouthpiece with a napkin and blew into the back end of the pod. After doing that, it worked great. It’s best to take gentle puffs and wait at least 10 seconds in between puffs.

There are currently five flavors available: 

  • Brightleaf Tobacco
  • Blue Raspberry
  • Tropical
  • Mint 
  • Berry Crunch

I have to say that my pod lasted almost 2 weeks.

If you want to try all flavors, you can get a Variety Bundle Kit. These bundled kits come in either 24mg or 50mg strength.


I found the RipTide Ripstick Pod Vape to be the most innovative closed system pod vape to date. Beautifully designed, it delivers a satisfying, smooth vape that’s tobacco-free and benzoic acid-free. 

The kit comes complete with a battery, a charger and two pods. What’s more, you can choose a different flavor and nicotine level for each pod.

The Ripstick surpasses all other disposable pod systems I’ve tried – including the JUUL. It is certainly less expensive. Right now you can get a kit bundle for less than $21. Replacement pods are only $3.99. 

The Riptide Ripstick wins hands down when it comes to flavor, e-juice formula, and price. It’s a ripping good vape.

RIPTIDE 9.8 Rating image

Have you tried the Ripstick? We appreciate your comments!  Thanks for visiting Best E-Cigarette Guide.

Looking for a great pod vape pen with a refillable pod? Check out these reviews:

SMOK NOVO 2 Vape Pod Review | More Power – Fewer Problems

SMOK NORD Pod Vape Review

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    • Bailey on September 20, 2019 at 12:13 am
    • Reply

    This product is awful, worst one I’ve had. I’ve used juuls, njoy ace, surion, nords, novos, etc. this one spits too much and doesn’t give you a big cloud. Don’t waste the $

    • Robbie on September 4, 2019 at 8:23 pm
    • Reply

    I’ve seen bottles of the liquid for sale but cannot find any refillable pods. Any idea where I can get the refillable pods?

    1. Hi Robbie,

      The Riptide Ripstick is a closed system vape. That means the pods cannot be filled, and the coil is built-in as well. I’m assuming you are seeing Riptide e-liquids, which are available for open system pod vapes. Two very highly rated open pod vapes are the new NOVO2 or the NORD.

      Thank for commenting and happy vaping!

    • Theresa M McFadden on September 4, 2019 at 8:45 am
    • Reply

    I too am experiencing spitting juice, and escaping air all straight from the box.So far to date I have purchased 6 pods on line at $3.99 a pop plus shipping which makes this product expensive to use on a daily regular basis. I do however like the taste of their juices but not enough to spend the high cost of using everyday so my hunt continues for my best vape experience.

    • Jennifer on August 20, 2019 at 6:08 pm
    • Reply

    Why is my vape making popping noise and I am also not gettting enough draw when I vape??? Please help

    1. Hi Jennifer,

      A popping noise simply means that the device is activating. The Ripstick like many portable pod vapes don’t have an activation button.

      When you say you are not getting “enough draw”, do you mean, not enough vapor? You should get a nice hit and ample vapor. First check that you have removed the little plugs from the top and bottom of the pod. Take a few puffs and it should get going. Hope this helps, and thanks for the visit!

    • Rosalind Rivera on August 5, 2019 at 1:43 pm
    • Reply

    My local vape store sells the pods for $ 5.00. This is the same cost as buying the refill pod here for the exact same cost of $ 5.00. You would think that the cost of the refill pods here on the homeschool te would be less expensive and especially if purchased in quantities. There is also the cost of s&h added to the cost which is eliminated if one makes the purchase at the local vape store. Wise up!! By the way, for the cost of $ 5.00 per refill pod, you would think that each pod would last much, much longer than a few hours! What a rip-off! I’m switching to something equally satisfying, less costly and much more convenient!

    1. Hi Rosalind,

      Thanks for leaving a comment. Our recommended seller (using our buy now button) sells the pods for $3.99 with free shipping, so it’s really a better deal.

    • Rose Hampton on July 28, 2019 at 5:03 pm
    • Reply

    I purchased one dipstick on 7-27-19 as soon as I got home, I read the instructions on how to set it up and I heard a pop sound, is that normal, or unsafe?

    1. Yes, perfectly normal for all auto-draw pod vapes. It just means the battery is activating.

    • Barbara on July 26, 2019 at 11:27 pm
    • Reply

    I bought the Rip Stick and loved the product, however I two experienced it spitting hot liquid onto my tongue. A little scary. I returned the pod to the store and received another one free. The second one has spit a couple of times but nothing like the first. The first one even leaked fluid onto my lip and the tip to the point of me being able to show the store owner the oily substance. I hope the are able to fix this issue because I love the product otherwise.

    • Ken Barczyk on July 25, 2019 at 12:10 pm
    • Reply

    I don,t know. How to use it My store doesn,t neither

    1. Hi Ken,

      You just charge it, attach a Ripstick pod and vape. Replace the pod when it’s empty. That’s all there is to it 🙂

    • Matilda Smith on July 19, 2019 at 12:51 pm
    • Reply

    I had an awful experience with this product.. which pretty bummed me out. I went to a smoke shop in town to purchase a Jul which neither have I had. So I purchased my rip stick 9-17-19 and the neck day I was driving home from work and I smell fire and I thought house fire. Look over on my center console is the product smoking. I pulled it off the charger and liquid oozing out of the tip. With smoke the battery was so hot. So I called the shop and told them and they said bring it in tomorrow. So I did today. They talked to the producer of the product and they said they didn’t have an cases of this happening which I get, but this was a bad one. So they couldn’t help me so I was out of my money and no product. Which I was totally bummed but happy because it could’ve been way worse if I didn’t notice it when I did and started a fire in my vehicle. But just be aware !

    1. Hi Matilda,

      Sorry about your experience with the Ripstick. We’ve learned that many private vape shops will not honor returns. That’s why all of our reviews offer Buy Now buttons to seller sites that guarantee a free shipping return or refund for any product that does not work properly. Of course, there is no obligation to buy if you visit the site from those links.

    • Becky on July 18, 2019 at 11:21 pm
    • Reply

    keeps burning the tip of my tongue.

    1. Hi Becky,

      Do you feel a little “spark” when you vape? If so, the atomizer is spitting e-juice drops and one is hot enough to burn you.

      This usually happens if the tank is either leaking or overfilled, but it can also happen with pre-filled pods. Did you do anything to the pod other than follow the user directions? Did you need to blow into the pod tip or base to get it going? I would contact the seller. If they have a good customer service department they should be able to help or replace your device.

      Hope this works out for you.

    • Sandra on May 21, 2019 at 10:24 pm
    • Reply

    i have been trying to stop smoking and got a rip stick have not smoke not one cigarette in two week went i get the urge i take a puff are two same pod a month using 2.4 mint thanks for rip stick

    1. Wow that’s great Sandra. Thanks for leaving your comment here!

    • Jack on April 16, 2019 at 6:52 am
    • Reply

    Did you find that it started spitting often for you? I love my ripstick but have found unfortunately that it spits often. I have tried hitting it slower and not pulling as hard but still run into the same problem of it spitting juice. When I try to hit slower there are times that the stick doesn’t even ignite(?) to give vape. Any help with this would be greatly appreciated.

    1. Hi Jack,

      I’ve never had a spitting problem with my Rip Stick, but try this. Remove the pod and place a napkin in front of the mouthpiece. Blow on the back end. That can help clear up any liquid that could be causing the pod not to fire, or if there’s gurgling or spitting. Hope this helps!

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