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Bongs are smoking pipes designed to cool and filter the smoke with water and/or ice before it enters the body.They come in many sizes, colors, styles. They are even made from different materials like glass, different plastics, ceramics, metals and even bamboo. Some “Macgyver” smokers out there even make their own bongs out of coconuts, water bottles or a hollowed out pumpkin on halloween.

Using a bong can be a fun and rewarding experience, but it may not be for beginners. Please, if you are new to cannabis, start slow and take small hits until you feel ready to take bigger rips. 

  • Step 1 : Choose your bong – There are many to choose from but if you’re a beginner, start with a smaller bong. Remember the bigger the bong, the more smoke that can be built up in the chamber. That may or may not be a good thing. An ice chamber is a good thing to have and a percolator is a real treat too.

  • Step 2 : Fill the bong with water and ice – Fill the ice chamber first (trust me) then slowly pour water through the ice to make it nice and cold. Ensure that the water level is not too high, no one likes a mouth full of bong water! If the bong has a percolator or an additional chamber, one can inhale  through the bong with the bowl out. This helps set the water in all chambers properly.

  • Step 3 : Grind or break up the cannabis – Breaking up the cannabis allows for a more even burn. Some smokers, like myself, prefer to break up the cannabis for a bong by hand. I find it increases taste. While others prefer using a grinder, stating that it offers a more even burn and a better hit. The choice is yours. 

  • Step 4 : Pack the bowl with your favorite cannabis flower – Packing too much cannabis or marijuana that is too tightly packed will result in a clogged bowl, making it impossible to inhale. 

  • Step 5 : Hold the bong to your mouth – With one hand securely hold the bong and place the mouth of the bong around your lips. Opening your mouth too wide may invite the dreaded bong water, plus there is no need and you will look silly.

  • Step 6 : Take a smooth deep breath and ignite the flower – As you inhale, touch the flame to the cannabis briefly, it won’t take much to get it going and you want to keep the hit as cool as possible. If you’re a beginner, do not feel the need to fill the entire chamber. After a few times you will get to know your limits.

  • Step 7 : Remove the bowl to clear the chamber –  At the second half of the hit, without stopping the inhale, remove the bowl and watch the smoke leave the chamber ( my favorite part ). Clearing the chamber allows fresh cool air in and does not let smoke remain in the bong and become stale. Stale smoke tastes horrible and will ruin the next hit .

  • Step 8 : Exhale the smoke swiftly – There is no need to hold the smoke in your lungs. New studies show that your lungs absorb all the cannabinoids it can from the smoke almost instantly, the “higher” effect is actually from depriving the brain of oxygen. Also, do not try and talk before you are done exhaling, from experience, this can cause coughing. 

Note: YOUR NOT DYING  – You have just taken your first successful bong rip! Don’t worry, most beginners cough their brains out. Soon you will be clearing that 5 foot bong like a pro.

Personally, I love smoking out of bongs. Whether that is from one of my custom 5 footer glass bongs or from a smaller 10 inch beaker, I am bound to have a great time. I have owned a lot of bongs throughout the years. My favorites are glass bongs but if I was buying my first one I would buy a silicone bong. Both are easy to clean and perform great but with silicone you have the added advantage of it being droppable and, when you are not used to being high as a kite, that can be very important. I also love the traditional bamboo bong because of that connection I feel to centuries of stoners before me.