How This Chinese E-Cigarette Brand is Vaporizing the Competition

By Barnaby Lofton, February 4, 2021

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When you hear the phrase ‘Shenzhen Speed,’ Relx comes to our minds – oddly enough.

The Shenzhen-based vape brand has made a name for itself in a short two-year period with the launch of award-winning products and a rapidly expanding brick-and-mortar retail operation.

In the summer of 2020, Relx released ‘Infinity,’ which has been well received by China’s growing vape community. (Relx markets its products as a replacement for smoking and established the ‘Guardian Program’ to prevent nonsmokers – especially youth – from picking up the addictive and unhealthy habit.)

Since we started using Relx Infinity, we’ve found everything from the size and weight of the device to the smooth pull to be a welcome change of pace from cigarette smoking.

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The Relx team managed to design this e-cigarette so you no longer need to worry about leaking – a common problem for many brands in the industry. Additionally, the flavors from the Relx Pods Pro leave a great taste in your mouth and aroma in the room.

We tested out several flavors including Berry, ‘Drunk Grape’ (醉葡萄), ‘Ice Cola’ (可乐冰), ‘Popsicle’ (老冰棍), ‘Cool Watermelon’ (凉西瓜) and ‘Rose Lychee’ (玫瑰荔枝). Each flavor was subtle and ended with a refreshing exhale. These flavors appear to be positioned for the Chinese market, as we’ve seen different flavors marketed on their global website.

Compared to previous e-cigarettes we’ve tried, Relx Infinity has an impressive battery life – which can be recharged with a Type-C port. As for how long each Relx Pod Pro lasts, that all depends on how frequently you use it. We usually leave our Relx at the office, so pods tend to last longer.

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According to Relx’s website, their proprietary e-liquid formula includes glycerol, propylene glycol, flavorings and nicotine salt. (Nicotine is a highly addictive chemical compound, as defined by the US Federal Drug Administration.)

It wasn’t so long ago that the vape craze was truly taking China by storm. You could find vape pens and other products prominently placed on convenience store counters as well as marketing campaigns all over the internet.

In November 2019, the State Tobacco Monopoly Administration and State Administration for Market Regulation intervened by urging the industry to stop online e-cigarette sales, shut down e-cigarette stores and halt all marketing activities. 

The outcome turned out to benefit Relx and other reputable e-cigarette brands as many dodgy operations closed up shop – leaving the market wide open.

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With around 300 million smokers in China – nearly one-third of the world’s total, according to the World Health Organization (WHO), e-cigarettes are often viewed as an alternative to tobacco cigarettes. Relx hopes to play a role in switching those smokers into vapers. 

In September 2020, Relx established a bioscience lab in Shenzhen to study the health effects and short- and long-term behavioral effects of e-cigarettes when compared to traditional cigarettes. Wen Yilong, Relx cofounder and head of R&D and supply chain, said, “We want to collect evidence through a scientific approach and strive to prove the potential for e-cigarettes to be less harmful, and in doing so, provide users with the option to choose an alternative.” As of now, there’s still an incomplete knowledge of e-cigarettes, which leaves a question mark as to how this alternative to smoking will pan out.

[Images via Relx, That's, Weibo and Unsplash]

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