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The Difference between Vaporizing and a Bong

by Angel Ferrer 4 min read


Ripping a Bong vs. Hitting a Vaporizer

Many old school cannabis smokers once thought that vaping would be a voguish trend and that people would eventually return to their favorite joints and bongs. But as technology advanced, discreet vaping devices, like vape pens, completely transformed the way in which users enjoyed their favorite herb.

With new and innovative vaporizers hitting the market each year, we’ve come to accept and embrace them as a fun and futuristic way to enjoy a toke.  Vaporizers allow you to enjoy cannabis without smelling like a half-burnt joint. A small vape pen is all that you need. And rightly, the internet is head-over-heels in love with vaping. 

But what about Bongs? Don’t worry, this timeless classical glass piece isn’t going anywhere either. In fact, there is room for both in your smoking/vaping line-up. Each has its own distinctive benefits and either may be better suited to particular situations or needs.

But that has left many fans of the wacky tobacky with questions regarding what the difference is between vaporizing and smoking herb with a bong.

With that in mind, let’s dig in and see what we were able to uncover with regards to how smoking from a bong differs from using a vaporizer…

Combustion vs. Vaporization

Each combustion and vaporization produce a different feel, high and experience due to the way in which your herb is turned into an aromatic substance (either smoke and vapor). The temperature plays a key role, with variances resulting in differing concentrations of cannabinoids such as CBD, THC and Terpenes from being emitted into a breathable form.

Smoking from a Bong 

When you take a pull from a bong, the herb combusts, resulting in the cannabinoids, terpenes, essential oils and other plant matter to be released in the smoke. This infused smoke is then inhaled, usually held in for a brief period, then exhaled. 

While regular glass pipes can produce strong, potent hits, the resulting smoke can also be a bit harsh on the lungs. Bongs that utilize water, on the other hand, aid in cooling the smoke and filtering out a certain amount of toxins and chemical byproducts present, making each drag smooth and easier on the lungs.

Smoking from a bong results in a, well, smoky traditionally pungent skunky aroma and flavor profile that we’re all accustomed to.

Vaporizing Herb or Oils

Vaping dry herb or concentrates works a bit differently. The vape device utilizes a battery and internal coils to heat up the herb or oil. The contents of the chamber get heated to a point at which they give off a “vapor”, but do not combust into smoke or catch fire. This vapor is infused with all of the active ingredients we all know and love: THC, CBD, Terpenes and other cannabinoids.

Vaping results in “vapor” that is cooler than smoke, and void of all the toxins created by combustion and torches. This makes the vapor smoother and less harsh on the lungs, making vaping a preferred method for many users with sensitive lungs.

Vapor from herbs also offers up a very different flavor profile; one that is rich, smooth, pure and unadulterated by smoke or torch fuel.

The body high vs. the head high

The body high vs. head high debate is often triggered on messaging boards when people compare different strains of cannabis. Recently, research has proven what we knew all along. Different types of Cannabis might produce different types of euphoric effects on users. 

What a lot of users do not know is that there’s also a difference between vaping and smoking. This difference in the type of high or the intensity of the high will vary based upon your particular herb, but also due to the way you consume it. There is no standard here, and experimentation with different temperatures (especially when vaping) is key to finding that perfect setup that delivers just the right blend and concentration of cannabinoids and terpenes. 

The head high

This is more of a cerebral high where your creative thoughts, your perception of things, your aroma, taste, mood, everything gets amplified in a good way. You will feel your best and most vape users report feeling this type of high, irrespective of the strain or the type of concentrate that they’ve used. 

The body high

The body high leaves you feeling cloudy in the head but relaxes all your muscles. It’s almost like endorphins are rushing through your system and you just want to stay on the couch without moving a limb. The body high is preferred by users who use medical marijuana for anxiety, pain relief and depression. The effects of smoking through a bong will typically last for 3-4 hours if not more. 

Is Smoking or Vaping the Better Option?

The answer to this question is a highly personalized one based on situation, goals, and preference. But to us, we say, “Why not both?” Fact is, both vaporizing and smoking from a bong have their own unique set of benefits and distinctive qualities that make each enjoyable. Find some good vaporizers in our 2019 vaporizer guide. or find a bong for less than $100.Try for yourself and let us know which you prefer.