Joints are probably the most time-tested way of getting high, but that doesn't mean they're the best. Just as the available strains and potency of cannabis have undergone massive changes in the past couple of decades, so have the ways people consume.
Here's why smoking marijuana is becoming increasingly passé.
1. You lose the good stuff
The results of a study by NORML California and MAPS found a high quality desktop vaporizer could deliver 46 percent of available THC from a packed bowl into vapour - a joint, by comparison, delivers as little as 25 percent. When you smoke, the majority of the THC is lost in side-stream smoke, a.k.a. the smoke lost in the air while the J is being puffed and passed. Bongs are more efficient: filling the chamber with a dense, voluminous column of smoke, and taking it in all at once, as opposed to in smaller tokes, means a more intense buzz with a quicker onset.
2. They burn too hot
A cigarette burns at a temperature of about 900°C during puffs, and about 400°C between puffs: the cherry of a joint reaches a similar temperature range. That's way hotter than it needs to be - THC can start to vaporize at temperatures as low as 300°C. Vaporizers work by heating up cannabis just enough to release the stuff that gets you high - not burning it to an impure, rather carcinogenic crisp. All that brown, dry plant material left in your vape (which some call the "duff) would've gone into either your lungs, or the air, if you'd smoked it. Gross.
3. You don't know what you're getting
According to a study conducted by NORML, vapour can be as pure as 95% THC: By contrast, smoke has over 111 components, as much as 88% of which aren't even cannabinoids - just carcinogenic extras just hanging out, having a deleterious effect on your respiratory system.
4. The high's less clean
The jury seems to be out on whether the high you get from a vape is more, or less, intense than smoking - as with all ingestion methods, everyone's got their preference. But anecdotal evidence suggests vapes have a more cerebral, lighter buzz with a lighter body-stone.
5. Smoke is annoying
Sorry, fellow smokers: we hate to break this to you, but you smell like weed more often than you think. The telltale, skunky odour of burned pot isn't a good look on anyone. Vaporizers are a more stealth, considerate option. While most still produce some smell, a quality model like the Pax 2 ($279) is pretty subtle, both in appearance and odor - and, in terms of your health and stash conservation, pays for itself in no time.