Bongs have certainly evolved since humans started using them thousands of years ago. With the addition of modern materials and mechanisms, shoppers have a dizzying array of bong options. So, how do you know which bong is right for you? 

Consider these questions before heading down to your local smoke shop or ordering your first bong:

  • Are you looking for a showpiece or a utility bong?
  • Will you mainly be smoking at home, or do you need a bong for travel?
  • What types of cannabis products will you be using?
  • What is your budget?

Now that you have a better idea of the features you’d like, let’s take a look at some different types of bongs and their advantages.

Bong Materials

Bongs come in a variety of materials, each with special characteristics. Some of the most common bong materials include:

  • Glass: Clear glass is the most popular bong material. Glass provides the purest flavor, and the transparency makes it easy to see when your bong needs cleaning. Glass can be shaped into countless forms, making it an excellent material for art pieces. Glass has the drawback of being more fragile and expensive than some of the other materials.
  • Plastic: Plastic bongs are relatively inexpensive and more portable than a glass bong. However, the plastic may leach into the water and affect the flavor of your toke.
  • Bamboo: Bamboo is one of the oldest bong materials. Bamboo bongs can last forever due to the toughness of the material. 
  • Ceramic: Ceramic bongs make beautiful showpieces and can easily blend with your decor. But, like glass bongs, ceramic bongs are fragile.
  • Silicon: Silicon bongs are durable and easy to clean. They’re flexible, and you can bend them for travel. 

Bong Mechanisms

Standard bongs rely on water filtration only. They come in straight tubes or bent-neck styles with flat, beaker-shaped, and rounded bases. Plastic bongs generally have carb holes, while glass bongs use the lift-the-bowl method to clear the chamber.

Ice bongs have special notches inside so that you can fill them with ice. The ice helps to cool down the smoke, providing a smoother hit. 

Scientific Bongs, such as recyclers and percolators, use sophisticated mechanisms to improve filtration.

Dab Rigs are water pipes made especially for consuming concentrates such as oil, wax, and shatter.

Bong Size

Tall bongs work well for people who like to take massive hits or for sharing with friends. Keep in mind that tall glass bongs are more prone to breakage. Mini Bongs tend to be more stable. Their small size means you’ll need less lung capacity for the draw, and you’ll be less likely to leave stale smoke in the chamber. Bubblers can be almost as small as a standard pipe. They’re excellent for travel and easy to clean.

Now that you’ve got an overview of the different types, you’re ready to purchase your first bong. Your local or online smoke shop will be happy to give you more specific information and help pick out the bong that’s right for you.