Alternatives to Rolling Papers

Alternatives to Rolling Papers

“My heart was filled with pride when they asked me to pontificate on the finer points of rolling a hog leg. I mean it is the single most classic smoking modality in modern history. I had the opportunity to work with the research team at Hippie Butler and we came up with a rating system that will help me explain why rolling is the most classic way to get elevated.

The first and probably the most important aspect of rolling is the ritual itself. This method scores high on experience because of this ritual. What I mean by that is the process forces the user to get their hands dirty. You have to touch your dry blend, you feel the paper between your fingers, you build a connection with your roll.

The other crucial aspect of the ritual is the people you are with and memories that are soon to be forgotten. But, let’s get real. Rolling is not perfect by any means. They get hot and so I rated it lower for temperature. The first few hits are not bad but about halfway through you will notice an increase in heat. That being said, the first few hits of a twist are probably the best-tasting hits you could ever have.

Rolling is arguably the most delicious way to sample your preferred herbal blends and yes I know what a controversial point I just made. Please feel free to argue your preferred choice in the comments. Now, to wrap up my review of rolling I can’t forget to mention that rolling is probably the messiest and stinkiest smoking modality there is, but that is exactly the way I like it. If you ever see me around, pass one my way.”

Rolling papers: The OG way to smoke for seasoned smokers. As much as we love a good old rollie every now and then, there are so many other ways to enjoy your herbs. By using a spoon pipe, water pipe, glass blunt, chillum or a vaporizer, you’re giving yourself an elevated smoking experience. Put down the rolling papers and graduate to a new way of enjoying your tobacco. Upgrading your smoking gear will enhance your smoking experience, allow you to better taste your choice of herb, diminish the smell, and help with clean up. The evolution of smoking modalities has exceeded far beyond stoner expectations and now has so much to offer you, so let’s get you caught up.

Rolling Papers

A note from your Hippie Butler

Smoking with rolling papers is classic, but you can up your smoking game with one of these 5 alternative smoking methods.

Spoon Pipes

Spoon Pipe
Temperature
Taste
Experience
Smell
Cleanliness

A tried and true favorite, the spoon pipe is a perfect choice for all smokers, whether they’re beginners or have been smoking for years. Spoon pipes can be held easily in your hand and are shaped like spoons (duh), with a traditional design that features a carb, bowl, and mouthpiece. This variety of pipe is usually the most durable, easy to use, and cost-effective piece for many smokers. Spoon pipes can come in many different beautiful styles and be made out of different materials such as glass, silicone, or stone, but will always give you an exceptional experience. Using a spoon pipe allows you to take a hit with medium heat and is relatively easy to clean. While it may beat traditional rolling papers in allowing you to enjoy the taste of the herbs, better temperature control, and cleanliness, it doesn’t beat the smell. Spoon pipes are generally very smelly, and can even be just as smelly as with using rolling papers.

The spoon pipe ranked well on our staff rating scale and is a favorite among the Hippie Butler family. In taste, the spoon pipe scored well due to its ability to allow you to properly taste your preferred herbs, especially when used with a hemp wick. Scoring in the middle of the road for heat, the spoon pipe might be a bit harsh for the newbie smoker. While it’s not as hot as a traditional pre-roll would be, the temperature of the smoke is harder to cool down while using a spoon pipe due to the limited surface area between the lit tobacco and your lungs. The smell while using a spoon pipe won’t be much better than a traditional cigarette and should be used in a well-ventilated area, preferably outdoors.

Spoon pipes are relatively easy to clean, especially with one of our pipe cleaning solutions. After smoking the tobacco, however, this pipe will have ample amounts of ash and will require an ashtray. Overall, the spoon pipe provides an exceptional experience that allows you to enjoy your herbs solo or with friends in a discreet and easy way.

Here’s what our friends at Celebration Pipes have to say about spoon pipes:

“The best reason for using a custom, made in America spoon sized pipe, is that you really get to savor the flavors of the combustible euphoriants especially when the golden vessel for the Rastafarian sacrament is passed and shared… much like Jimi Hendrix’s famous phrase, “kiss the sky”…you taste the true and holy essence that brings ‘one love’…’nuf said’.”

Overall Rating

Water Pipe

Water Pipe
Temperature
Taste
Experience
Smell
Cleanliness

Using a glass water pipe is beneficial for many reasons, including the obvious: how cool they look. While being visually appealing, they also serve the purpose of cooling down and filtering your smoke as it passes through the water. The smoke will be especially cooled if ice is used in the neck of the pipe. The more surface area of the pipe that the smoke touches, the cooler the smoke will be. The benefits of cooled smoke allow for a bigger, smoother hit to be inhaled, which we all know is the goal. Water pipes have always been a party favorite because this way of smoking allows everyone joining the smoke sesh to limit the amount of smoke passing through the pipe and allows control over how big of a hit they want to take. The majority of water pipes have a removable bowl that acts as a carb and allows the intake of smoke to be regulated. Thanks to all of the nifty features the water pipe beholds, it scored super high in experience, taste, and heat, but scored medium in smell and cleanliness on the staff rating scale.

The water pipe scored best on the heat scale due to the size, which allows for more surface area to be touched by the smoke. This allows the smoke to touch multiple, cooled surfaces such as ice and water, to ensure a smooth hit. Using water as a coolant is great for cloud size, but not great for taste. Water pipes scored a little lower than spoon pipes on the staff rated taste scale.

This is due to the water filtering the smoke, and simultaneously removing some of the herbal flavors. While this may not bother most smokers, the loss of taste could be a turn off for the herbal connoisseur. Unfortunately, even with the smoke being filtered by the water, the smell is still very poignant. After smoking the water pipe, clean up can be a hassle unless it is cleaned regularly and with a great glass cleaner. Due to this reason, the Hippie Butler staff scored water pipes lower on the cleanliness scale. Especially if your water pipe has percolators or nontraditional attachments, it can be a pain to clean properly. Overall, the staff voted that the water pipe is the resounding choice for group smoking. It can be smelly, so make sure you use it in a well-ventilated area, but we feel that by using a water pipe, you and your buds will have an exceptional smoking experience.

Overall Rating

Chillums

Spoon Pipe
Temperature
Taste
Experience
Smell
Cleanliness

Chillums are small, cigar-shaped tubes that are made of glass and meant for single person portions. This type of pipe is a favorite among old school smokers who have been using legal smoking herbs long before vapes came on the scene. This travel-sized glass piece is a great alternative to rolling papers because they are reusable, pocket-sized and only holds enough tobacco for a quick smoke sesh. While pre-rolled cones and cigarettes are very similar to chillums, they also have a few noticeable differences.

Our staff rated the chillum super high in taste and experience, but lower on heat and smell. For starters, chillums are reusable and don’t require as much tobacco at one time to be used. This is beneficial for smokers who just want a couple puffs at a time, instead of having to finish an entire cigarette. While chillums scored high in some categories, it scored poorly on heat due to its small size. Since chillums are small and made of glass, the minimal surface area doesn’t allow for the smoke to be cooled before you inhale, creating a strong, smelly, and harsh hit. This can make your throat feel scorched and leave you smelling dank. Luckily, cleaning chillums isn’t too hard as long as you have an ashtray and a pipe cleaner kit. Since the chillum lets you properly taste your legal smoking herbs, is discreet, encourages a communal smoking ritual, and is relatively easy to use, they scored very well on the staff scale for the overall experience.

Our friend, Jane West has a chillum called “the taster” and offers a sleek, glass design that is as useful as it is pretty. Here’s what Jane has to say about it:

“One of the best things about the taster (chillum) is the bowl size is perfect for sampling a small amount of flower. In the legal marketplace, there are so many great strains to choose from. With the taster, people can have a taste of one thing and then a taste of something else. And the quality of the flower available these days is such that you don’t need to have much of a particular product to really taste it. When I have a party, I like to put a variety of tasters on a table so people can really taste all the different flavors of flower we are providing, as opposed to just one.” – Jane West

Overall Rating

Glass Blunt

Spoon Pipe
Temperature
Taste
Experience
Smell
Cleanliness

Glass blunts are similar to chillums, but with added technology to enhance your smoking experience. Glass blunts are usually either magnetic or have a spiral piece on the inside to hold the smoking herbs in place. As you smoke, ash slides out at the end which allows for a clean burn and is best for traveling smokers, festival enthusiasts, or the outdoorsy type. Using a glass blunt is great for anyone who wants to keep their herb contained and have a piece that allows fast and easy smoking on the go. There are a few different designs depending on the manufacturer that you buy from, however, all of the options contain a glass tube, a mouthpiece and some type of contraption that keeps the tobacco in place such as a magnet or a metal spiral piece. Loved by many, this smoking modality is a perfect alternative to smoking pre-rolled cigarettes or hemp wraps.

Due to metal and glass being conductors of heat, the glass blunt scored lowest on the staff scale for heat. As an alternative to rolling paper, this way of smoking won’t help the smoke’s temperature be cooler, so if you’re looking for a smoother hit, this isn’t the right piece for you. In addition to the hot smoke, you also won’t get the best flavor from a glass blunt due to the heat and ash pulling through every time you inhale. This method is smelly, almost just as smelly as a paper cigarette, but just with a smaller amount of tobacco. Also, they can be tricky to clean, depending on the design you choose to buy. Keep in mind that the glass blunt does require an ashtray and should be used in a well-ventilated area. Overall, this scored a little less than the other pipes, but still is a solid choice for any smoker who’s always on the go.

Overall Rating

Vapes

Spoon Pipe
Temperature
Taste
Experience
Smell
Cleanliness

Vaporizers have blown up the smoking scene over the past few years, and for good reason. Vapes allow you to smoke discreetly while traveling and remain inconspicuous. If you’re slick enough, you can vape anywhere due to the lack of lingering smoke and the dull smell. The Hippie Butler is a big fan of the CCell Palm for a small, compact and discreet smoking session. You might even catch The Butler using one during his live show at 4:20.

As a staff favorite, vapes scored very high on the Hippie Butler rating scale. In taste, heat, smell, and cleanliness, vapes scored a solid 10. Vape smoke isn’t hot, and the temperature is controlled, allowing you to inhale big clouds. Vapes juice and cartridges come in many different flavors, which allow you to customize the taste based on your personal preferences.

Since they taste great, vapes also smell great- go figure!

If you’re smoking a cherry flavored cartridge, it’s highly likely that you’ll be blowing out clouds that smell like cherries too. Since you aren’t burning any tobacco with these types of vapes, and the clouds dissipate, vapes can be used indoors, where policy permits. If you’re using a cartridge vape, clean up is as easy as 1,2,3. Simply remove the cartridge, throw it away, and replace it with the new cartridge! While the vape is a favorite among many, our staff scale scored it low on experience, due to its lack of ritual. While you can still share your vape with friends at a party and pass it to the left, the classic roll-your-own smoker might feel like they are missing something when it comes to the smoking experience itself.

Overall Rating


Hemp Wick

If you’re sick of the coughing that comes with hitting a cigarette or glass piece, consider trying hemp wicks instead of a traditional butane lighter. Butane is a harsh chemical that is rough on your lungs, especially if you’ll be lighting your tobacco multiple times while using a spoon pipe, water pipe or something similar. Overall, any smoking method can be enhanced by using a hemp wick to light the herbs. Instead of you inhaling the butane from the lighter, the butane lights the hemp wick thus allowing your hit to be butane free.

Conclusion

Luckily for us, smoking culture has evolved so much over the years and has produced many new, innovative ways to enjoy your legal smoking herbs. If you’re looking to update your smoking gear and want to try something new, know that the Hippie Butler will always provide you with quality products to make your smoking sessions top-notch. When you finally do make the switch to a glass piece, remember to add Pipe Protect to your order so your new piece will be insured. If your glass breaks, you pay 10% of the total cost of the piece and we’ll replace it!


What is your preferred smoking method? Which smoking hacks did we miss? Tell us below in the comments or on social media!


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Erinn Holman

A millennial writer who's passionate about alternative medicine, the smoking industry, and the Oxford comma.

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