Pros vs. Cons: How to Use a Bong

Bongs are one of the best ways to consume weed but there are a few things you should know before you buy yourself one.

Cannabis users have become very creative in recent years, coming up with new and innovative ways to consume their favorite concentrates. However, one oldy that refuses to give up is the bong. Using a bong has been a crowd favorite for over a hundred years, and they don’t seem to be going out of style. 

Bongs not only come in various shapes, sizes, materials, and more; but can also be used to make other smoking devices like a dab rig. People get creative to this day, still using the occasional bamboo shoot or even fruit to make a bong! All in all, bongs are a great investment for anyone looking to smoke dried herbs! 

History of Bongs 

The word “bong” comes from the Thai word, “buang,” which specifically referred to the bamboo bongs.

Bongs have been used since the ancient ages and can be traced back to over 2,400 years in history. From golden bongs made by one Iranian Scythe tribe to primitive bongs discovered in Africa and Central Asia, bongs have had a rich history. 

The word bong is derived from a Thai word, ‘baung’, which are popular bamboo tube bongs. Historically, bongs were made from ceramics, animal horns, bamboo tubes, metals, and many other materials. 

The use of water bongs was first noticed in the Chinese dynasties and obtained a royal stature. The kings and important ministers were often even buried with their fondest pipes! Today, smoking from a bong is still a highly enjoyed activity, with every herb user having had at least one bong phase in their lives! 

What is A Bong? 

A small and portable glass bong might pack a big punch

A bong is a device used to consume dried herbs and can be made of materials like quartz, metals, ceramics, and organic substances like bamboo. A typical bong consists of 5 main parts, namely the bowl, carb hole, downstem, base, and tube. 

The herb of choice is placed into a bowl, often over a protective gauze. The tube is sealed at one end and is long, with multiple openings. One opening is placed at the end of the tube, where the mouth would be placed to inhale. Another opening is where the bowl is fitted, and the third opening is a hole(speed hole), that is to be covered while inhaling the smoke. 

Water is filled into the chamber of the bong, in the base, and the herb is set alight. The user places their mouth over the tube opening and enhances, continuing to burn the herbs. The vapors are pulled into the chamber of the bong, where the water filters and cools down the smoke. Once the chamber is full, the user can inhale the smoke and uncover the speed hole. 

What bongs do essentially is offer users a cheap yet effective way of obtaining a pure, filtered hit of smoke with minimum effort. They also demand minimum maintenance, requiring you to only clean out the water regularly and occasionally wash them! 

Pros of Using a Bong 

There are numerous benefits of a bong, some of which are: 

  • Bongs provide cooler, milder, and richer smoke than most other devices. 
  • The smoke produced from heating dried herbs is filtered through the water in a bong, ensuring that the hits are easier on the lungs and throat. This ensures that tar is filtered out before the smoke enters the lungs. 
  • They require minimum maintenance and smoking your favorite herbs requires less prep time than a joint. 
  • Many added features can be purchased to make the experience more smooth, filtered, enhanced, and more! 
  • Many bong users cite that bong enhances the intensity of the hit. 

Cons of Using a Bong

There are a few cons to using bongs as well, as with any other device that allows one to smoke. These are: 

  • Bongs are often easily breakable and are harder to travel with or conceal at home. 
  • They are more complicated, especially when working with various add-on features. 
  • Depending on the bong, novelty or fancy bongs can be much harder to clean and maintain. 

Which Bong is Ideal for you? 

Enjoy Mary Janes's Beginners Guide on choosing which bong is Ideal for you

Bongs today come in a huge variety of sizes, shapes, materials, and designs. One of the main benefits of bongs is the ability to customize your bong to match your personality! Let’s discuss the two main aspects to consider when buying a bong, especially as a beginner: material and design. 


Glass Bongs: 

Glass bongs are the most popular type of bongs in the market. Glass bongs ensure clean, pure taste and their transparency help spot any resin build-up right away. Glass bongs are, however, more expensive, easier to break, and harder to travel with. Glass bongs are sometimes made with Borosil, in which case, they do not break as easily. 

Acrylic Bongs

Acrylic bongs are highly durable and make a great travel companion. They are also way cheaper than glass ones. The only downside is that over time acrylic bongs can leave an unpleasant flavor on your tastebuds. 

Ceramic Bongs: 

Ceramic bongs are perfect if you want a showpiece that doubles up as a bong. These usually come in beautiful colors, shapes and adorn intricate designs. They are usually heavier and more expensive, making them suitable for special occasions. They are also quite fragile and need to be properly maintained. 

There are other options available as well, including metal, bamboo, or wooden bongs. DIY bongs are also trending these days, providing an easy, quick solution to consume dried herbs. 


Straight-tube Bongs

This type of bong contains a simple straight tube with a bowl and stem. 

Round Base Bongs

Round base bongs are more stable than straight-tube bongs, carrying a sphere-shaped water chamber. 

Beaker Bongs

These are similar to the round-shaped bongs except for a beaker-shaped base. The flat base makes these bongs very stable and easy to place on surfaces. 


Percolator bongs or bubbler bongs come in various shapes and sizes. The unique feature of these is a percolator which is added to the bong for extra filtration. Percolators provide smoother, cleaner hits but are often harder to clean. 

Depending on how you want to use a bong, you can pick from the above materials and designs to choose the ideal bong for you. 


Bongs are timeless devices that produce clean, pure, and smooth hits and are very cost-efficient as well. Now that you have all the necessary information, you can evaluate your smoking needs and look for the perfect bong. You can also research all the extra features you can opt for and customize your bong to suit your unique needs!