MTL vs DTL – What is the difference?

MTL vs DTL - What is the difference?

Vaping can be a little daunting and intimidating when starting out. There are so many different styles of mods, tanks, eliquids and batteries that allow us to fine tune our vaping experience to exactly how we like it. Today we will discuss MTL vs DTL – what is the difference?


To answer this we should first find out what the two acronyms mean. MTL stands for mouth to lung vaping, and DTL stands for direct to lung vaping. In a a nutshell they are the different ways that you draw the vapour into your body and how it ends up in your lungs where the nicotine is absorbed into your system.

MTL or Mouth To Lung

This is where you inhale the vapour first into your mouth, and then into your lungs. The way this is done is more of a suck type of inhale, to where the vapour sits in your mouth and then you breath in to your lungs. This is the way that most people smoke cigarettes and is naturally the way that people first start vaping.

MTL vs DTL - What is the difference

The benefits of this way of doing things is that your mouth can also absorb some nicotine from your eliquid, and some people prefer this way of vaping as is mimics smoking. This will result in a smaller amount of vapour being exhaled too.

To vape like this you need a restrictive airflow tank, as something with too much airflow will not allow you to do this method, as you cannot get the pressure needed to draw the vapour through. Some argue this gives a better and more concentrated flavour as there is less air to vapour ratio due to the restricted amount of airflow.

DTL or Direct To Lung

This is my personal preference of vaping and the way that I now naturally vape. This is where you bypass the first stage of pulling the vapour into your mouth, and basically just breathing straight into your lungs.

The vapour obviously passes through your mouth, but does not spend much time there as it fills your lungs instead. To me this is a smoother way of vaping and I find that it gives me the nicotine is a less harsh way.

Wotofo Bravo RTA Review

When DTL vaping, you require a larger airflow to allow you to pull the vapour direct into your lungs. One thing to note when using this method is that you have to draw quite hard to ensure that the vapour is not too hot. Many first time vapers will think that this is not the way for them as they are scared of taking in too much, when infact the harder you draw, the cooler the vapour is and the easier to handle. It sounds counter intuitive but its true!

MTL vs DTL Vaping – Final Words

For a long time, atomisers were coming with bigger and bigger airlow to give more cloudz bro! but there seems to be a resurgence in the MTL style vaping to accommodate for those who are looking to have a more stealth vape set up and a more realistic cigarette experience.

I personally enjoy the DTL way of vaping, but do wish that less clouds were produced. Unfortunately there is yet to be a way of simulating the DTL experience with the MTL results.

As the demand becomes higher for MTL vapers, more and more atomisers are being released with this as their selling point, such as the Cthulu Hastur MTL RTA, the Vapefly Galaxies MTL RTA and the Digiflavour Siren 2 MTL RTA.

There are also a lot of DTL style atomisers on the market, and I am personally loving the OBS Cruis RDA & the Wotofo Bravo RTA. Both have plenty of airflow that is adjustable to your style!

Mike Strong

Mike Strong

I have been vaping for over 5 years and have been a keen hobbyist ever since starting. I moved into the review side of things after the success of my @mikethevaper Twitter page and have been striving to provide help and knowledge ever since.