Roll it up, light it up, smoke it up… inhaaaaale… exhaaaaale…” were the iconic instructions that B-Real and Cypress Hill gave us back in the day, but with regulated cannabis markets cropping up from coast to coast, curious consumers have more cannabis consumption options than ever before.
The first thing that a lot of cannabis farmers do after a successful harvest is sit back and roll up a giant joint stuffed full of the fruits of their labor… but not all growers celebrate in such a way. These days, it might be a fat dab that floats their boat, or a batch of brownies bound to get them baked. That variation in how we all choose to consume our cannabis goes to the root of cannabis culture and compounds the usefulness and the majesty of the plant.
Let’s take a look at the Top 10 most popular and most effective forms of cannabis consumption or use.
Cannabis Consumption Method 1: Smoking
Though many of the categories listed below are on the rise, popularity and sales-wise, smoking weed still reigns supreme. Call it caveman instincts to love lighting shit on fire, but be it a bong, a blunt, a doob, a pipe, or a pre-roll, the majority of cannabis connoisseurs worldwide still prefer to consume dried cannabis flower by way of combustion.
Rolling joints and smoking them is how the top cannabis competitions in the world, like the Emerald Cup, are judged.
Depending on the quality (and the qualities) of the cannabis in question, of course, bioavailability is high with this form of consumption and effects are usually pretty much immediate – particularly for low-tolerance users.
Flames, ash, and the telltale aroma of the smoke and the most popular devices can be a turn-off for those new to the plant or those who hope to remain discreet.
Cannabis Consumption Method 2: Vaporizing Flower
For decades now, cannabis consumers who have invested in tabletop cannabis flower vaporizers like the Volcano will swear by the heightened flavors and effects that they experience as compared to actually smoking the same buds using a flame.
Using a convection of hot air to activate the cannabinoids, terpenes, flavonoids, and other essential compounds in the cannabis flower, these vaporizers don’t ‘burn’ the weed, and thus, create no ash. Instead, you are left with what is commonly known as ABV weed (Already Been Vaped) which you don’t want to re-vape or smoke, but can still have use in making edibles.
This form of cannabis consumption is particularly useful for folks with respiratory issues that may prevent them from smoking, and let’s face it, it must be a healthier alternative if it works for you.
Cannabis Consumption Method 3: Vaporizing Hash Or Concentrates
This category covers the most common forms of vaping cannabis concentrates, extracts, and hash using electronic devices.
Brands like Puffco, iSpire, and others are enjoying market dominance these days by providing portable, rechargeable/battery powered, customizable vaporizers that allow the user to dial in temperature settings and more for a flavorful form of cannabis consumption.
Of course, vaporizer cartridges are an increasingly popular form of cannabis consumption too as brands like Alive & Well have changed the game with hard-hitting Live Resin and Live Rosin vape carts that continue to push the bar higher and higher when it comes to quality.
Cannabis Consumption Method 4: Dabbing
It might seem strange to separate this category from the one you just read, but if you know, you know that dabbing just hits different.
When you ask someone about their first dab, they might be able to tell you a little bit about it, but they likely can’t tell you a damn thing about the next few hours after that first dab.
The use of an open-flame torch or even a hot-coil e-nail (not to mention the carb caps and doodads that dabbers deal with these days) is enough to intimidate plenty of canna-curious consumers, but for those that can get past the aesthetics a blast-off experience awaits once a well-crafted cannabis concentrate dab plops onto a perfectly heated quartz platform.
Effects are immediate and – when executed properly – can offer the best expression of a cultivar’s flavors, aromas, and effects
Cannabis Consumption Method 5: Edibles
Another category climbing in popularity is edibles. Once a mystery where one bite too many might send you to space and back, today’s sweet and savory edible cannabis consumption methods are endless in variety and relatively accurate in advertised dosing.
The effectiveness of edibles tends to differ anywhere from a little bit to wildly from user to user based on so many variables ranging from metabolism to tolerance and everything in between, but when you find the product and the dose of cannabinoids that truly work for you, the results can be life-changing.
For me, a 40mg rosin-based edible cannabis gummy about a half hour before bed is a welcome one-way ticket to eight hours of great sleep. For my wife, 10mg is the max. We figured that out together naturally and safely and that’s medicinal, baby.
Cannabis Consumption Method 6: Beverages
It took a while for cannabis beverages to really make a splash in regulated markets, mostly due to the overpowering flavors that cannabis and terpenes deliver, but also in how the active cannabinoids like CBD and THC would evenly suspend in the beverage itself to ensure that every drop, sip, or gulp had a relatively similar amount of the total dosage within.
Advances in the nano-emulsification of those key cannabinoids has legitimized the cannabis beverage sector of the market by providing cannabis consumers with yet another reliable form of consumption as an alternative to inhalation.
These days you can even get them in powdered form – like Crystal Lite or Kool-Aid – that can be mixed into a bottle of water or any beverage, or even added to food for an extra kick!
Cannabis Consumption Method 7: Tinctures
Cannabis tinctures are, hands down, the most effective way to flood your receptors with cannabinoids. The most ‘medicinal’ of all consumption or delivery methods, cannabis tinctures are typically a blend of cannabinoids like CBD or THC along with a carrier like vegetable glycerin or even alcohol.
Typically, doses are measured using a dropper vial and the desired dose is taken sublingually, or in other words… held under the tongue for 15-30 seconds to allow the cannabinoids to enter the bloodstream quickly through the capillaries in our mouths. After that time, the solution is swallowed, which provides a prolonged dosage through the digestive system.
For decades – long before it was ‘legal’ – cannabis tinctures have been changing lives and saving lives.
Cannabis Consumption Method 8: Topicals
Typically applied directly to the skin, cannabis topicals come in many forms like balms, salves, or lotions. These products are infused with cannabinoids or blends of cannabinoids and, ideally, are paired with ingredients that help the active cannabinoids reach the bloodstream efficiently.
Transdermal patches – similar to what one might use to stave off a cigarette habit – can be infused with cannabinoids as well to localize and prolong exposure of cannabinoids to the skin.
Naturally combating aches and pains by reducing the inflammation at their root, rather than just masking pain like prescription opiates, would be enough of a gift from this form of cannabis consumption, but properly crafted and dosed topicals can even heal open wounds and in countless anecdotal cases have even cured cancers!
*DID YOU KNOW?*
In addition to ingesting it orally, Beard Bros Pharms RSO can be applied topically as well in its packaged form or can be warmly blended into your favorite salve or lotion to create your own medicated solution!
Cannabis Consumption Method 9: Suppositories
Cannabis suppositories, like tinctures, are one of the plant’s greatest gifts to medical patients who can truly benefit from the constituents of cannabis, but who cannot consume it any other way.
Blends of cannabinoids are introduced vaginally or rectally to treat issues with the gastrointestinal system or a woman’s reproductive tract. Some male patients use them for ulcerative colitis or crohn’s but these are just a fraction of the ailments or medical issues that can potentially be alleviated or even treated with cannabis suppositories.
Cannabis Consumption Method 10: Alternative Cannabinoids
We figured that this deserves its own category as the popularity and knowledge surrounding alternative cannabinoids like CBG, Delta-8, and THCV (to name just a few) is on the rise as some really smart people like the crew at Hibegone are unlocking groundbreaking new uses and benefits of this emerging form of cannabis (and hemp!) consumption.
Don’t forget Beard Bros Pharms RSO! Our multistate branded high-THC and high-CBD RSO products could land in several of the categories above as it is an incredibly potent and versatile form of plant medicine.
Things like pain management, optimizing sleep, and stimulating an appetite can put a person on a path to better wellness and can all be achieved through these forms of cannabis consumption.
Enjoyed that first hit? Come chill with us every week at the Friday Sesh for a freshly packed bowl of the week’s best cannabis news!