The “Action on Smoking and Health” organisation – also known as “ASH” published the findings of its 2023 vaping survey.

ash vaping survey 2023 banner

The survey was conducted by ASH and YouGov in the spring of 2023 to get an oversight of vaping behaviour in the UK.

You can read the full PDF document here.

ASH and YouGov have been conducting these surveys since 2008 and in 2013 added youth questions for those aged 11-18.

Survey Methods

The survey was conducted online and there are two sub branches…

  • Adults – there were 12,271 adult respondents during the period from 22/2/23 to 15/3/23.
  • Youth – there were 2,656 respondents during the period from 21/3/23 to 18/4/23.

Key Findings

  • The survey finds that there was no significant change in the last year of proportion of 11-17 year olds currently vaping or smoking.
  • However experimental use of vapes in under 18s is up by 50% on last year’s results
  • Disposable vapes are the main choice for under 18s currently vaping
  • Corner shops were the main source of supply of disposable vapes
  • Child awareness of in-store promotion of vaping has grown significantly since the 2022 survey.

Adult Vaping

The results show an increase in adult current vapers who were smokers (27%). But there are still 27% of smokers who have never tried vaping.

ash 2023 adult vapers
Results of ASH survey on vaping 2023 – adult smokers who vape

The next set of results are about vapers who also smoke. It shows there are few vapers who have never smoked (6.7%), 56% of vapers are ex-smokers and 37% still smoke as well as vape.

ash survey 2023 smokers who vape
Results of ASH survey on vaping 2023 – adult vapers who smoke

Youth Vaping

As mentioned above the Youth surveys were for 11-18 year olds but most of the data reported covers 11-17 year olds who are underage for buying vapes or tobacco.

The level of use of e-cigarettes is reported and experimentation (one or twice usage) has increased to 11.6% from 7.7% in 2022.

ash survey 2023 youth vaping table
Results of ASH survey on vaping 2023 – Youth vaping results

Other figures such as occasional use (less than once a week) and regular use have remained pretty stable since 2022.

ash survey 2023 graph youth vaping
Results of ASH survey on vaping 2023 – Youth vaping results

The topic of why under 18s choose to vape are covered next. The main reason being “just to give it a try”.

ash survey 2023 reasons youth vaping
Results of ASH survey on vaping 2023 – Youth vaping reasons

Now we get to the topic of youth vaping and smoking.

The numbers show a slight increase in vaping (up to 7.6% in 2023 from 6.9% in 2022) and a great decrease in smoking (down to 3.6% in 2023 from 4.8% in 2022).

ash survey 2023 status youth vaping smoking
Results of ASH survey on vaping 2023 – Youth vaping and smoking status

There is one result which does concern me. The fact that the amount of youth who are vaping that have never smoked has increased from 40% in 2022 up to 48% in 2023. Admittedly this is still better than youngsters smoking, but still is a scarily high percentage.

ash survey 2023 youth experimentation
Results of ASH survey on vaping 2023 – Youth vaping and smoking over time

As we know there are many types of vaping product, but for this survey they were grouped into single use (disposable vape) or reusable (pod kits, pen kits, vape tanks etc.).

Sadly for the under 18’s disposable vapes are the prominent product at 69%. Reusable vapes have dropped to 12% from a peak of 35% in 2020.

ash survey 2023 types of vape youth
Results of ASH survey on vaping 2023 – types of vape product – youth

To follow on from the types of vape – the participants were then asked what brands did they use. Top result was Elf Bar, followed by Lost Mary, Elux, Geekbar and the SKE Crystal.

ash survey 2023 disposable brands youth
Results of ASH survey on vaping 2023 – disposable brands – youth

The topic of vape promotion was next and the awareness of those aged 11-17 of vaping products has increased.

Those who see vapes promoted in shops rose from 37% in 2022 up to 53% in 2023. But it is worth noting that 20% of youngsters have not seen vapes being promoted.

ash survey 2023 youth promotion vapes
Results of ASH survey on vaping 2023 – where do youth see vapes promoted?

Following on from that they were asked where vapes were promoted most online. TikTok seemed to be the most prolific with YouTube and Instagram following.

ash survey 2023 online youth vape promotion
Results of ASH survey on vaping 2023 – Online vape promotion youth

Generic Results

In proportion the amount of vapers both adult and youth who have never smoked is still small. Only 2.3% of youth vapers have never smoked and only 1.1% of adult vapers have never lit up.

ash survey 2023 never smoking vapers
Results of ASH survey on vaping 2023 – proportion of never smokers who vape

Where do people buy their vapes? Well for adults the main location is the internet, but for youth vapers it is a local shop.

ash survey 2023 vape purchasing
Results of ASH survey on vaping 2023 – vape purchasing

Harm perception for both youth and adults was tackled.

Sadly 54% of young people view vaping as equally or more harmful than smoking. I am not sure if this is good or bad? Yes we want young people to stay away from vaping, however would this perception drive them towards tobacco instead?

ash survey 2023 harm perception youth
Results of ASH survey on vaping 2023 – vape harm perception youth

In adults 39% view vaping as harmful and only 34% view e-cigarettes as less harmful than smoking. The trends for adults show how the media has manipulated the harm reduction perception of vaping in a negative way.

ash survey 2023 adult vape harm perception
Results of ASH survey on vaping 2023 – vape harm perception adult

Michelle

My name is Michelle - I am 48 and an engineer and Technical Author by trade. I started vaping many years ago in the days of Tornado tanks, Ego batteries and Variable Voltage. My journey in vaping began again around 2016 and have been interested in the topic ever since. I finally stopped smoking as of June 2019 and that is all thanks to vaping! 20mg Nicotine Salts are my hero! Oh and I am partial to a nice pod mod and Bubblegum e-liquid! I have enjoyed writing for Ecigclick since 2017 and love being part of this great team! My passion for Tobacco Harm Reduction has also led me to becoming a Trustee for the NNA (New Nicotine Alliance) aiding in Advocacy

My name is Michelle - I am 48 and an engineer and Technical Author by trade. I started vaping many years ago in the days of Tornado tanks, Ego batteries and Variable Voltage. My journey in vaping began again around 2016 and have been interested in the topic ever since. I finally stopped smoking as of June 2019 and that is all thanks to vaping! 20mg Nicotine Salts are my hero! Oh and I am partial to a nice pod mod and Bubblegum e-liquid! I have enjoyed writing for Ecigclick since 2017 and love being part of this great team! My passion for Tobacco Harm Reduction has also led me to becoming a Trustee for the NNA (New Nicotine Alliance) aiding in Advocacy

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here