Consuming Cannabis: Smoking vs. Dabbing

Smoking is one of the oldest methods of consuming cannabis out there, next to eating it. Chances are that if you are reading this, then you most likely have tried smoking cannabis (this is a cannabis blog after all). If not, maybe you’ve tried edibles. What is your preferred way of consuming cannabis?

There is a relatively new way to consume cannabis nowadays, it’s called dabbing. This method has grown quickly in popularity since its introduction in the late 1990s. Since then, many cannabis users have turned to this method to get high. Statistics show that dabbing is used by all types of cannabis users, but is most commonly used by younger users.

What Is Dabbing?

So the big question is: what is dabbing? Well, dabbing is technically just another form of smoking, however, you do not smoke regular cannabis. Instead, you smoke a cannabis concentrate. This can be wax, hash, or a different type of concentrate made from cannabis. What is a concentrate? Well, in terms of cannabis, it is a smokable substance that has a high amount of THC in it. In other words, it’s like regular weed but to the max. Cannabis concentrates can get you much higher than regular cannabis can, due to its increased potency.


Dabbing is very similar to smoking in the way that you still inhale and exhale smoke. However, dabbing is not as simple as directly sparking up some concentrate with a lighter. Instead, the concentrate is pressed against a very hot metal. The metal is typically heated up by using a handheld torch. Once pressed against that metal, smoke is produced as a result of the extremely high temperature. That smoke is what is inhaled and exhaled, and is the smoke that gets you very high.

Click to watch a video on our YouTube to see how a dab is taken.

The most common type of cannabis concentrate used to dab is wax. This is because the form of wax makes it easy to put on a pick (or a small, metal needle) and take a dab with, compared to other forms of cannabis concentrates. In addition, wax is probably the most common concentrate found in marijuana dispensaries.

Pros Of Dabbing

Why would someone choose to dab over smoking? Well, there are a few reasons. First, let’s look at these reasons, and then talk about each of them.

Here are the reasons why someone would rather dab than smoke:

One reason why someone would prefer dabbing is that it can get you much higher than regular weed can. Some concentrates that can be used in dabbing contain up to 30-40% more THC than regular weed does. If you do not know about THC, it is the element in cannabis that gets you high. So, more THC equals a stronger high. And indeed, the high from dabbing is much stronger, so be prepared (you’ve been warned).

You can also use dabbing as a way to get high faster. If it normally takes you 2 grams of weed to get the high that you want, then maybe one or two dabs give you that same high, but much quicker. Now, I understand that many stoners enjoy smoking and taking their time (me too at times), however, sometimes you just need a quick high. Maybe you are in a rush. Maybe you only have a certain amount of time to get high. Whatever the case may be, dabbing can get you high faster than smoking regular weed can.

In life, it is great to try new things. In a stoner’s life, it is great to try new ways of getting high. If you are a frequent and experienced cannabis smoker, then I highly recommend that you try dabbing if you have not already. It is a good thing to try out, and you can enjoy that high.

Another reason why someone might want to dab is to build up a tolerance. Now, if you are a rookie smoker and have little to no tolerance for smoking, then I highly suggest that you do not try dabbing. Dabbing can be harsh on the lungs and can be overwhelming for those who cannot handle it. This is why I recommend dabbing to frequent and experienced cannabis smokers. If you have tried dabbing before or are at least somewhat experienced with smoking, then dabbing can be used to further build up your tolerance and handle even more. For more ways to build up your marijuana tolerance, click here.

Did you know that cannabis wax has no smell of marijuana? That’s right, the smoke from these dabs can be almost scentless. So, if you are in a situation that requires you to not smell like weed, then you could take some dabs and nobody would know otherwise. Your eyes may become bloodshot, however, so keep that in mind.

Pros Of Smoking

Why would someone choose smoking over dabbing? Well, as for dabbing, there are a few reasons. Here’s some:

  • To get a chill high
  • Because dabbing is too much
  • To focus on the medical side of cannabis
  • To start building up a tolerance

Dabbing can be a way to get you super high, but some people do not want that all of the time. Sometimes, it’s nice to sit back and enjoy a blunt, joint, or bowl of some regular weed. A normal high is occasionally better in certain situations compared to being super high. Along with that, a normal high can be ideal in circumstances that require more focus and attention. In my opinion, the best time to take dabs is when you have a relaxed schedule ahead of you.

Similar to the point made above, dabbing can be too much at times. For some cannabis users, the high from taking a dab is too much of a high. Some users like a regular, classic high. And most times, that can only be achieved through smoking weed, and not wax.

Those who use cannabis primarily for medical uses tend to not like dabbing. This is because concentrates used for dabbing tend to be high in THC, but not CBD. While THC still holds many medical values, CBD is used much more to help with health conditions. For this reason, medical marijuana patients may prefer to stick to weed that is high in CBD.

Click here to check out the differences between THC and CBD.

Since we discussed tolerance above, I will keep this one short and simple. It is not ideal to start building a tolerance by smoking concentrates. However, it is ideal to start with regular weed. If you are new to smoking and want to try dabbing, I suggest getting comfortable with weed first, then moving up to some concentrates.

Which Is Better?

So which is better, smoking weed or dabbing it? Honestly, the choice is ultimately up to you. After reading the pros of each, which do you think is better?

It’s best to figure out what will benefit you the most before making your decision. Also, try both out. That could change your answer. Either way, use cannabis for the way that you see it to be used. Thanks for reading. Happy smoking (or dabbing)!

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Evan Weston

Evan Weston is a contributor to Reefer Posts, a growing community for exploring the developing market of Cannabis and CBD-related products. He spends a lot of time researching the development of health-related products that utilize Cannabis and CBD oils. He also keeps tabs on the developing legal environment regarding medical, recreational cannabis use, and production.

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