Electronic cigarettes

Electronic cigarettes simulate the act of tobacco smoking. Electronic cigarettes have not been assessed for safety.

About electronic cigarettes

Electronic cigarettes are battery-operated, electronic devices that make mists for inhalation to simulate the act of tobacco smoking. They are also known as e-cigarettes, e-cigs, or electronic nicotine delivery systems (ENDS).

Electronic cigarettes are sometimes marketed as a tobacco replacement and are available for sale in Australia. However, in some states and territories it is illegal to sell any product that is designed to resemble a tobacco product.

Risks and injuries

No assessment of the safety and quality of electronic cigarettes has been undertaken.

Nicotine intended for therapeutic use is only available by prescription.

If liquid nicotine is imported for uses other than therapeutic, it is considered a substance that may cause harm and requires special precautions in manufacture, handling or use. 

See: Electronic cigarettes (Therapeutic Goods Administration)

Buying tips

  • In all states and territories, the retail sale of nicotine is an offence unless a permit has been issued by the relevant state or territory authority.
  • In some states and territories, obtaining, purchasing, possessing and/or using nicotine without a permit is an offence. For details, contact the relevant state or territory health agency.

Safe use

  • The quality and safety of electronic cigarettes is not known.

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