So, you’ve never smoked a joint before. Or maybe you have, but it’s been a minute and you’re considering diving back in. You’re not alone, friend. As the laws gradually change around the world, more and more people are taking the opportunity to smoke a joint for the first time.
It’s an enjoyable, easy way to experience what cannabis has to offer. Smoking a joint is also a low-investment way to try smoking, as it doesn’t require expensive equipment.
As it turns out, over the 5,000 plus years of humans consuming the herb, cannabis has evolved and today claims its own unique slang, language, humor, literature, music, art, and etiquette. And nowhere is that etiquette more pronounced than when it comes to rolling, smoking and sharing a joint.
ROLLING A JOINT
Do you roll your cannabis flowers the right way? Follow our easy instructions to make a joint from a bud. Our beginner’s guide also covers directions on lighting and smoking marijuana.
What you will need:
- A Bud of Cannabis
- Loose tobacco (if you are rolling a blunt)
- Rolling Papers
- Filters (optional)
- Lighter or Matches
- Select a nice bud and break it into smaller pieces, distributing it with moderation into the grinder. Do not overfill it. It’s better to grind smaller amounts at a time to maintain a uniform flower texture.
- Grind your weed until it is an even but slightly coarse consistency. Powder or large chunks will cause it to burn unevenly and could create an unpleasant taste.
- Take out a single sheet of rolling paper and place it down on the table in front of you. Be sure that the glue side is up and on top, so that it runs horizontally to your left and right.
- Place a filter at the far left or right of the rolling paper. If you do not have a filter, you can create one by tearing off a ½ inch section of the paper. Roll it into a tight spiral and position it at the end of your paper.
- Distribute the ground cannabis (and tobacco if you are rolling a blunt) in the center and across the paper horizontally. Knowing how much to add to create the right width will take practice. Ideally, you want the finished product to be the size of a standard cigarette or thin cigar.
How to Smoke a Joint by Yourself
Whether you’ve rolled your own joint or opted for a pre-roll, the first step in lighting up is to “roast” your joint. Unlike a cigarette, where you light and inhale at the same time, joints should be roasted before inhaling by holding the flame to the end of the joint. Then rotate the joint to make sure it’s evenly lit all the way around. Roasting the joint first also helps to prevent canoeing (AKA running) or an uneven burn.
You may also want to consider adding a homemade filter or tip, also known as a crutch, which holds the end of the joint open, keeps plant matter out of your mouth, and protects your fingers and mouth from getting burned as you work your way down the roach. A crutch is really simple to construct and can be made with just about any kind of stiff paper (think about the thickness of a business card).
Now that you’re ready to start puffing, take a steady hit, then exhale slowly. If you are new to smoking, you’ll most likely cough, which is really normal. Drink some water between hits to soothe your throat and remember, smoking a joint is not like smoking a cigarette, where you smoke the whole thing down. Pay attention to how you’re feeling, and take a break if needed.
Smoking Joints with Friends
Smoking joints with friends is where the rules of joint etiquette really apply. One of the first rules of smoking with friends is that the person who rolls the joint sparks it. However, the roller is, of course, allowed to pass the privilege to another.
After lighting up, the most important tip for smoking with friends: Puff, puff, pass.
Take two reasonably-long puffs without hogging the joint, and pass to your left, unless house rules specify otherwise. When you exhale, make sure that you don’t blow your smoke into someone else’s face, which is, at the very least, inconsiderate. And before you pass, ash your hit. This way, ashes won’t fall on your friends’ floor, furniture, clothing or skin (not cool, and ouch).
Speaking of hogging the joint, don’t hold onto it during your turn, also called “babysitting,” or “bogarting.” This usually happens when the holder is sharing a story, but regardless of how enthralling that tale might be, people don’t want to wait and watch the roach burn down while you hold court.
There are a few other tips to help you unlock Emily Post status in your smoking circle. An important thing to remember is that sharing a joint with friends is a communal activity, where laughs, stories, and yes – germs are shared. So do your best to not to slobber all over the joint (the person to your left will thank you), and if you are sick, be respectful of the group and let them know (and maybe bring your own piece). And last but not least, don’t peer-pressure a friend if they choose not to participate. It’s important to be respectful of both consumers and non-consumers.
So, here are the rules of the road to help you smoke a joint like a pro:
Tips for Smoking a Joint Properly:
- Whoever rolls it, sparks it
- Roast your joint
- Take slow, steady hits
- Puff, puff, pass
- Ash before you pass
- Don’t babysit the joint
- Don’t exhale in anybody’s face
- Try not to slobber on the joint
- Respect house rules
These tips work well for both novice and experienced consumers, so give them a try at your next sesh. Happy smoking!