Choosing the Right Pipe for You

With multitudes of ways to smoke now available on the market, it can be overwhelming to determine which pipe is the best fit for your needs. A wide variety of shapes, sizes, materials and methods for smoking exist today, which can make it confusing to know what exactly you’re looking for while shopping around for pipes. No need to worry, though — we break down the basics in this short guide to help you choose the perfect pipe.

Pipes have been in use long before the advent of modern technology, and they now can range from the simplest clay device to intricate and stunning works of blown glass. While some may think that all pipes are created equal, choosing the right one for your intended use can actually make or break your smoking experience. Read on!

By Material

Metal – While less common than glass, but perhaps more common than clay or wood, metal pipes have become popular for their small designs which are easily concealed and adjustable for smokers on-the-go.

Clay – Clay pipes actually date back centuries, as far as the 1500s, and were primarily used for tobacco or local herb blends. Molded by hand and heat-treated, clay is an all natural option for minimalists and is making a comeback for pipes among local potters; colored glazes and delicately-drawn designs are a few artistic perks of these pipes.

Wood & Bamboo – Wood pipes have also long been in use, and are favored for their various natural colors and densities, however hardwood pipes are ideal for their longevity. Although bamboo isn’t technically woody material, it continues to be used for pipe making within a niche market of artisan crafters, as well.

Glass – The most commonly used material for pipes today, glass is incredibly versatile in both form and function. It is also durable, cleaner, and easier to keep clean for prolonged use.

By Type

One-Hitters and Chillums – Similar in size and function, one hitters and chillums are both cylindrical or tubular shaped devices that are easy to travel with and conceal. While one-hitters are comparable in size to a cigarette and intended for a single hit, chillums typically have a greater holding capacity. Both types can be found made from a variety of materials, including clay, glass, stone, bamboo, metal and wood.

Glass Blunts – Just like chillums and one-hitters, glass blunts are cylindrical, discrete, and easily portable. The benefit of these pipes, compared to others of similar size, is that they hold much more than others and can be packed prior to transport, keeping herbs and tobacco dry, secure, and stored while in transit.

Bubblers and Water Pipes – Popular for their variety of shapes, styles and artistic designs, bubblers and water pipes have a few components, including a water reservoir, bowl, stem, and mouthpiece. These are popular for their ability to provide a stronger hit, but are less transportable than other smoking devices.

Spoon Pipes – Ranging far and wide in style, color and size, spoon pipes are typically made of glass and are found in most smoke shops due to their sweeping popularity. Many are made to change color after a few uses, and are easily cleaned by soaking in alcohol or other solvent to remove residues.


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