Lighters and matches have long been the heat source of choice for tokers worldwide, but for those who want to keep it truly OG, they’ll want to know what a hemp wick is.

While hemp has long maintained the reputation of being a hippie material and fabric, the hemp wick is starting to experience a resurgence within the cannabis community for its ease of use, better flavour and overall reliability.

You might be thinking to yourself, “that all sounds great, but…What is a hemp wick, exactly?” Luckily, you’ve come to the right place to find out all this and more!

If you haven’t hopped on the hemp wick train yet, here’s why you should!

What is a Hemp Wick?

hemp wick guide

Essentially, a hemp wick can come in varying lengths, and it is twisted hemp fibres that can be lit and used to spark a joint, bowl or any other smoking device. 

Unsurprisingly, it is made entirely of hemp and is coated in a thin layer of wax, typically beeswax, to help preserve the integrity, structure and longevity of a lit flame. 

Like a fuse, when lit, a hemp wick will burn extremely slowly and brighter, which many tokers appreciate when trying to navigate more intricately shaped smoking accessories, such as bongs, bubblers or pipes. 

Tokers often use it with a smoking device because of its longer length. In this way, they can light a flame on a longer length of hemp wick and use that to spark their bowl instead of using a lighter and potentially burning their fingers.

That said, hemp wicks aren’t just exclusive to cannabis culture. They are also prevalent in luxury candles, camping kits and retro jewelry. 

Are Hemp Wicks Better Than Lighters?

A hemp wick offers many advantages over matches and lighters. 

Below, we’ll go over the top 3 reasons why using a hemp wick could pose a better solution over other heat sources!

Hemp Wicks are Healthier

For starters, a hemp wick is natural. Lighters, often the convenient tool of choice for many tokers, burn butane to spark a flame. While this isn’t inherently dangerous, using a lighter to spark a bowl or a joint runs the risk of coating your bowl or joint with butane vapours. There’s also a risk of butane inhalation too.

Matches, another popular tool of choice, aren’t that healthy either. The combination of glue, combustible chemicals and fire accelerants won’t kill you, but it also won’t be too healthy for your long-term health, either.

They are More Versatile

In addition to its health benefits, a hemp wick is also easier to use. How many times have you burned your finger awkwardly trying to contort yourself and your hands to spark a bowl?

Even if the flame doesn’t roast you directly, the metal components surrounding the trigger can heat up extremely quickly and cause damage to your fingers. Tilting the lighter to reach your bowl can also angle the flame towards you and cause injury.

Conversely, you can spark a raw hemp wick ahead of time and then bring it closer to the bowl. In this way, you can keep your hands and fingers at a distance away from the flame and the bowl, while sparking up with total immunity. 

A Hemp Wick Supplies Better Flavour

On top of all the other benefits, tokers using hemp wicks can also experience a better flavour than using a butane lighter. 

Butane lighters and matches need to combust before they can start a fire. This prerequisite means the flame itself burns at an extremely high temperature. If you know anything about terpenes, you’ll know that high heat and terpenes don’t mix. 

The high temperatures will burn off most of the flavour-packed terpenes in your joint or bowl, and that’s no bueno if you’re looking to maximize on taste.

Conversely, a hemp wick will burn at a comparatively lower temperature. Since there is no combustion involved and no fire accelerants or chemicals included in the actual wick itself, it’ll burn at a temperature low enough where the terpenes won’t be affected.

Using this natural alternative is a great way to make sure that you’re getting all of the flavours of your weed without any of the butane, health risks or potential burns!

Related: What Are Cannabis Terpenes? How Smell Affects Your High

How to Use a Hemp Wick

Using hemp is as natural as can be. Like we said, as an organic product, hemp wicks aren’t just used for weed, but for a variety of other things, too. They can be found in candles and are frequently used in spas and beauty parlours because of their organic, holistic nature.

Depending on where you’re shopping, hemp wicks are either available by the spool or in smaller, ready-to-go smoking packs. No matter where you get your wick from, using this organic alternative is easy. 

Begin by unspooling the wick and removing any excess packaging or adhesive binding it together. Unwind just enough to keep a safe distance from the flame. A forearm’s length is a good place to start.

After you have the desired length for your wick, light one end using a butane lighter or a match and wait for a few seconds. This slight pause allows the flame to burn off any residual butane or chemicals the butane lighter might have given to the wick.

 Once the flame is steady, you can start moving the lit tip to your joint or bowl and smoke away!

Final Thoughts

There’s no denying that butane lighters are convenient and efficient, but what could be better than lighting your weed with something made out of weed plants? 

Made out of cannabis and fortified with beeswax, a hemp wick is the best thing to use if you want to maximize your flower’s taste. 

Popular hemp wick brands include Humboldt Hemp Wick and Raw Hemp Wick. Humboldt Hemp Wick is produced in California and made with organic hemp fibres and natural beeswax, while raw hemp wicks are made in China.

No matter what brand you choose to purchase, you can rest assured that you’re using an organic, trusted and natural source of fire for your next sesh!

Herb Approach News is the media division of the cannabis health company Herb Approach. Through this medium, we are determined in providing insight on everything cannabis related, from news to commentary, from tips to guides on practical consumption, a whole lot more. Have a question? Email us at [email protected].