Elf Bar’s have taken the disposable market by storm, quickly becoming one of if not the most popular disposable vape kit available right now. Despite their unrivalled flavour and convenience, it does seem a shame to have to keep buying Elf Bar’s and disposing of them, not to mention it’s not great for the environment. Well, luckily for you, Elf Bar have introduced a rechargeable Elf Bar – the Elf Bar Mate 500. Can it really live up to the hype of an original Elf Bar though? We tested it to see. Key Features of the Elf Bar Mate 500 The Elf Bar Mate 500 is a pod device that is rechargeable and is sold as just a base without pods, but they can be bought separately. A slightly smaller battery than the original Elf Bar, the Mate 500 has a 500mAh built-in battery, which can be recharged in no time at all thanks to a Type C USB charging cable. We tested out the battery and it will comfortably give you all day vaping without the need to recharge (using it as if it were a cigarette). Much like the Elf Bar, the Mate 500 is a completely auto draw device, so no setup or maintenance is required, you simply inhale and go. Lightweight and portable, it is just a little bit taller than the Elf Bar standing at 11cm tall with the pod installed. It is slightly wider than an Elf Bar, but certainly doesn’t feel big, bulky or take up anymore pocket space. Specifications: Height (without pods installed): 8.5cm Height (with pods installed): 11cm Weight (without pods installed): 24g Weight (with pods installed): 32g E-Liquid Capacity: 2ml (Pods) 20mg (2%) Nicotine Salt (Pods) Battery: 500mAh (Built-In) Material: Aluminium & PCTG Puffs: Up to 600 Draw Activated Type-C USB Charging Port Max Charging Voltage: 5A Charging Current: <1A What’s in the Elf Bar Mate box? Inside the Elf Bar Mate 500 box is the kit (thank god), a Type C USB fast charging cable, the user manual, a warranty card and a small warning and information card. Interestingly the warning and information card is obviously the same one they use for the Elf Bar as it mentions it cannot be recharged. For clarity and in case it wasn’t obvious, you can recharge the Elf Bar Mate 500. The warranty card is a nice addition (something you don’t get with disposables), but we can’t find anywhere on the Elf Bar website that you could redeem this. Therefore our advice would be if you have any issues with the Elf Bar Mate, contact the retailer you got it from. Elf Bar Elf Mate Pods The Elf Bar Mate 500 pods are needed to be able to use the kit and they can be bought separately. They are widely available and you should be able to get them from most vaping retailers. They come in 16 different flavours at the time of writing and this is constantly growing. Each pack contains 2 pods that are pre-filled with 2ml of e-liquid. Currently, the Elf Bar Mate 500 pods are only available in a 20mg nicotine strength which is the same as the regular Elf Bar. Due to the Mate 500 being a rechargeable device, it’s not possible to exactly gage how many puffs you get per pod, but you should comfortably get 500 puffs per pod. This means per pack, you get the equivalent of 2 Elf Bars or around 60 cigarettes. To install the Elf Bar Mate 500 pods, you simply press down the red base, wait 3 seconds and then pop it into your kit. It is then ready to vape. One thing I really love about these pods is the fact the flavour is labelled at the bottom of the pod. Unlike most competitor devices, this allows you to switch between pods and easily identify which flavour you are vaping, a small but cool little addition. Flavours: There are currently 16 flavours of liquid in the Elf Bar Mate 500 pod range. Elf Bar use the exact same liquid in the Mate 500 as they do in their regular Elf Bars, so you are guaranteed that same (if not better) excellent flavour you get with the disposables. Each flavour is available in a 20mg nicotine strength and you get 2ml of e-liquid per pod. All of the existing flavours can also be found in the original Elf Bar Range. Flavour List Cola Strawberry Cream Tobacco Banana Blueberry Raspberry Energy Strawberry Ice Banana Ice Pink Lemonade Blueberry Watermelon Mango Grape Blue Razz Lemonade Tobacco Kiwi Passionfruit Guave Flavour Test Now if the Elf Bar Mate 500 is going to be even half as successful as it’s disposable counterpart, it has to do one thing exceptionally well – deliver good flavour. Does it pass the test is the question? We tested a few flavours of the Mate 500, along side the original disposable Elf Bar to see which was better. The consensus at Vape.co.uk HQ is that in fact the Elf Bar Mate 500 delivers better flavour than the original Elf Bar. One thing we noted was just how much stronger the flavour is in the Elf Bar Mate, it quite literally is mouth watering. Like the original, it delivers a very sweet flavour, with a full vape on the inhale and a cooling breeze on the exhale with a fantastic after taste. Build Quality and Design The Elf Bar Mate 500 has a solid build quality that is very similar to a a small pod system like this. If you’ve ever used a Vype/Vuse kit, it is a very similar build quality, but with a million times better flavour. A lightweight device, the Mate 500 doesn’t feel at all bulky in your hand but does feel sturdy with enough weight behind it. Available in 9 colours with a two tone paint job, the Mate 500 really is a great looking little device. On the front you’ll find the Elf Bar logo proudly asserting itself, painted into the kit to create a great finish. Slick looking and a metallic design, the Mate keeps its cool thanks to the aluminium body it possesses. It is less rounded than an Elf Bar with a flush and wider finish. The mouthpiece again is different to the original Elf Bar which you would expect from a detachable pod. Less duck like and more angled, the mouthpiece is definitely thicker in your mouth, but feels more solid like a rechargeable device should do. Our only flaw to the Elf Bar Mate 500 would have to be where the USB charging port is placed. The charger needs to be plugged into the bottom of the kit which can be frustrating as you can’t stand it up when charging which is never good for a coil or pod. Although not uncommon with this type of device, it’s still a little annoying. LED Light Indicator One feature that is definitely worth mentioning is the LED light indicator, found at the front of the kit. It’s a bit tricky to understand the meaning of each flash and light, so we’ve done it for you. Inside the box you’ll find the user manual which does explain the LED light system, but without further ado… LED Light Flash = Sufficient Battery LED Light off = Low Battery LED Light on for 2 seconds: Short Circuit protection (let it rest for a minute or two) LED Light flashes twice: Can mean: Over-time protection (vaping longer than 5 seconds) OR Low Voltage Protection When Charging: LED Light Flashes = Charging LED Light Off = Fully Charged Pro’s and Con’s Pro’s: Excellent Flavour Great alternative to disposable vaping Great design Long lasting Good battery life Slightly more sustainable than disposable vaping (a good stepping stone) Con’s Position of the USB charing port Pods not included in kit Summary… There can be no doubt that the Elf Bar Mate 500 is the best kit in its category. Comparing it to the Vuse/Vype kits and similar alternatives like the Smok Infinix range, it wins 100 times over. The flavour delivery in the Elf Bar is exceptional, to the point it is better than a regular Elf Bar. It doesn’t make sense that the kit isn’t sold with pods included, but there are enough flavours to choose from that it doesn’t matter too much. To use the Mate 500 is much cheaper than vaping disposables and slightly better for the environment too which makes them a great option to transition from smoking. We would definitely recommend this kit to new vapers and as a stepping stone from disposables to refillable kits. Elf Bar – keep on smashing it with kits like this! _____________________________________________________________________________________ Need help with anything vape related or have a question about our products? Click the button in the bottom corner to chat with one of our UK-based vape experts and get real-time advice from our team. _________________________________________________________________________________________ Disclaimer: Look, we know what you’re thinking. How can a retailer publish a review and expect us to take it as gospel? The truth is we don’t expect you to. We’re here to help you make better, more informed decisions to help you quit smoking. To accomplish this we pledge to offer you absolute honesty in all products we review and content we publish. Keep your eyes peeled for more vape kit and E-liquid blogs coming soon! Elf Bar have not sponsored this post and were not involved with any of the opinions formed.