We all have secrets we keep, and this is mine. A secret I keep from many and a secret I obsess over. I have become a master at hiding it. People are usually shocked when I reveal my secret to them. "You do not look like a smoker" they say. I am still not sure what a smoker "looks like" but yes, my name is Stephanie and I am a smoker.
As a teen I was like "yeah I smoke f** you, now what". As a young adult I didn't hide it but I started developing my habits and fears. Now that I am a mother the compulsion to hide it as to not be judged by society drives me to hide it even more.
I do not want to be judged or labeled just because I am a smoker, but lets face it that is what happens. I started smoking at 15 and over the past 22 years I have quiet many times, sometimes for a month and other times for years. When hubby and I decided to start trying to conceive I threw them away and never looked back.. Not until after the girls were past their first years did I pick up the habit again. Why do I keep circling back to it?
My theory is that there are many different types of smokers, I happen to be a "stress/habit smoker". Not sure if that is a real diagnosis or not, but that is what I labeled myself. Some people are stress eaters or have nervous habits, I smoke. It's the only time I get 5 minutes to myself to calm down and reflect. I also smoke out of habit. It is a daily habit after I get the girls on the bus to brew my coffee, grab a smoke and head outside with my phone to chat with a friend.
I can not stand the smell of smoke on my clothes or my skin, it's disgusting. My compulsion to hide my secret has me locked into a pattern. I do not enjoy my cracked and bleeding hands because I have to scrub them every time I have a cigarette. I do not enjoy the extra laundry I have to wash because I change my clothes often to avoid the smell of smoke on me. Most of all I really do not like the constant fear of being found out.
I do not smoke in my house, in my car or around my children. I do not carry my cigarettes with me when I leave my house. I will only smoke away from my home if I am at a friends house for a bbq/get together and they already know I smoke. Even then I excuse myself and walk away from the crowd. My need to keep my secret sometimes ways very heavy on me.
When I got an email from a PR rep from NICOmate about writing a review I was so excited. I had been online comparing e-cigs and reading reviews for a few weeks, so this was perfect timing. I thought I would be reviewing a disposable electronic cigarette which was great but when I found out they were sending an e-cigarette starter kit I was floored. I was so excited to get my package I literally stalked my mail lady every day that week. Then the day finally came, and it was perfect timing because I had smoked my last cigarette the night before.
In my starter kit I received:
* 2 high capacity lithium ion rechargeable e-cigarette batteries ( one "king" and one "100". For you smokers out there you know what that means).
* 1 USB E-Cigarette Charger
* 1 E-Cigarette Wall Charger
* 10 disposable nicotine cartomizers (equivalent to 10 packs of cigarettes and 300 puffs!)
* Instruction manual + E-cig Lifetime Warranty Card
The e-cigarette batteries come half charged so you can immediately start using it. So of course when I got my NICOmate package the first thing I did was put my e-cig to the test. When you order the starter kit you can choose between regular tobacco flavor or menthol. Well being a menthol girl myself, the choice was not a hard one.
I noticed even before I took my first puff that the weight of the e-cigarette is a little heavier than a regular cigarette, but of course it would be since it is not filled with tobacco and over 4,000 deadly chemicals but instead a rechargeable battery. Drawing my first puff from the e-cigarette was interesting. The flavor is nice but the feel of the smoke was surprising. It was actually a lot lighter than I expected yet when I exhaled I saw "smoke" just like a regular cigarette.
"NICOmate replaceable cartomizers are filled with fluid made from a mixture liquid nicotine and propylene glycol. When a user inhales on the NICOmate electronic cigarette, the battery powers an "atomizer" to atomize the liquid into what amounts to inhalable vapor (similar to a fog machine). The vapor is cool and is taken in with a similar feeling of smoke from a traditional cigarette. The flavor of the vapor depends on the NICOmate flavors you choose. Our users have compared the flavor and feeling to that of a hookah (sheesha) and traditional cigarettes."
I have been using the NICOmate e-cigarette for a week now and I have to say, i love it! Even after 24 hours I found I had broken my morning ritual and daily habits. Where I would normally smoke 4-5 cigarettes in a day, I was drawing 4-5 puffs off the e-cig for the whole day. Now lets think about this...1 normal cigarette takes about 5 minutes to smoke and you get approximately 10 puffs. Times that by 5 cigs, that is 50 puffs and 25 minutes of my day spent just smoking. I went from that to only 4-5 puffs for a whole day. After 3 days of using the e-cig I went to only 1-2 puffs and on day 4 I didn't use it at all!
I am on day 7 and still using it sparingly. Last night after dinner I had a couple cocktails, and if your a smoker who likes a tasty adult beverage you know drinks and smoking go hand in hand...yet another one of my smoking habits. However I only needed 1-2 puffs to satisfy me instead of a full cigarette or two.
Will I continue to use the NICOmate e-cigarette?
Absolutely! While I realize I am a creature of habit I also have to be honest and admit to myself that I enjoy smoking. Not sure what it is about it, but I enjoy it. I very much enjoy a cigarette with my cocktails and I enjoy hanging out with my friends that smoke. However since I started using the NICOmate e-cigarette, my hands are healing, my laundry load has decreased and I do not live in the constant paranoia that someone can "smell it" on me even though I have showered and put on fresh clean clothes.
I like that I can still enjoy an occasional smoke. I say "occasional" because since using the NICOmate I have decreased my smoking by over 90% but I still have the option. The option to enjoy a puff when I want and I can even hang out in the crowd of non smoking friends at parties and "smoke" because there is NO second hand smoke or nasty smell. I no longer have to isolate myself or be embarrassed.
My recommendation. If you are looking to quit or even just cut back I highly recommend the NICOmate e-cigarette. If nothing else be glad your not inhaling those over 4,000 dangerous carcinogenic chemicals in the traditional cigarettes. If you have the same fears I do use the NICOmate to get your confidence back and feel better about yourself.
NICOmate has a great FAQ page if you would like to read more about the NICOmate e-cigarette and how it works. For you review bloggers out there, NICOmate is always looking for more reviewers. CLICK HERE to fill out the online application.
Want the NICOmate Starter Kit for FREE!!! That's right, NICOmate is offering one lucky winner the whole kit and caboodle! Enter below.....
Disclaimer: I was contacted via email by PR rep for NICOmate about writing a review and hosting a giveaway. I received the previously mentioned product free of charge to review. I received no monitory compensation. All comments and opinions expressed are mine and mine alone and are unbiased.