Dabbing Etiquette: 10 Rules for a Dope Dabbing Circle

Dabbing EtiquetteThink back to your first smoking session with friends. If you were lucky enough to have someone educate you on how a smoke circle is conducted, they most likely told you the rules and informed you on how to properly smoke in a social setting. Some examples you may have been told include contributing some of your weed, giving seniority to the person who provided the weed or rolled the joint, only taking a couple of puffs before passing it onto the other person, and similar rules that have become ingrained in stoner culture.

For those who have been invited to smoke oil or wax concentrates, you may be taking part in an entirely new experience. Most of the smoking rules may still apply to this. For those who have been invited to dab in a group setting, here are 10 steps that will help you learn more about dabbing etiquette.

What is Dabbing?

Dabbing is the process of vaporizing wax or oil concentrates and inhaling them for a stronger high. In order to take dabs, wax or oil concentrates, must be heated up using a torch on a dab rig so that the substances can be properly turned into vapor. Dabs contain higher concentrations of THC when compared to flower forms of marijuana. This means that you will be way higher than you would be if you were smoking a bowl or a joint or blunt with your friends.


Dabbing is a great way to get high quicker and more efficient. Here are the benefits associated with dabbing instead of smoking your marijuana.

  • Wax concentrates and oils are exactly what they sound like. Concentrated cannabis that contain more THC than the average dry herb. While joints, blunts, and bowls will get you high, dabs will get you even higher and with a lot less of it.
  • Weed can be expensive. When you’re in a group and you’re sharing herbal marijuana with your friends, you are going to go through more marijuana than you would on your own. Since dabs have higher levels of THC, you need a lot less to get high and your group will as well. Less to use means more money since you will be having to buy less dab to get your group high.
  • You get a much cleaner and more pure taste experience when you use dab instead of smoking weed. Since the wax or oil concentrates are turned into a vapor rather than a smoke, it provides a better flavor profile than what you would get with a blunt, joint, or bowl. In addition to this helpful property, the dab rig itself contains complex water filtration systems that further purify the vapors and cool them down before they reach your lungs.
  • Wax also give off a unique smell and taste that are known as terpenes. Not only do they give off a special taste and smell but they hold some medical values too.
  • Grinding up your weed and packing into a bowl or into another smoking tool is a messy process. Besides the weed that usually falls all over the place, there is also the sticky mess that is left on your fingers and the ash that is left over when the weed is burned. Using wax or oil concentrates means having no more mess because of the tools you can use. Dabber tools help to scoop up your wax so there is no mess left behind.
  • According to most users, the high that they get from dabbing is not only better but more clear. Some say that this can be associated to the fact that you have to inhale smoke when you smoke herbal marijuana whereas you only have to inhale vapor when you do dabs.

Dab and dabbing rulesWhy Dabbing Etiquette Matters?

Much like you are expected to act a certain way when you are invited to dinner, there are certain manners that are expected of you when you take a part in dabbing. Certain actions will be considered rude while other rules are considered respectful. To better understand what is expected of you, here are 10 steps to proper dabbing etiquette.

1: Use Your Own Wax

Unless you are the host and you want to share your wax with everyone or unless your friends in the circle let you know ahead of time, it is best to bring your own wax. Although you will have to use less wax to achieve your desired high, it can still be expensive if the host has to provide dabs for each person. Make sure to bring and use your own wax and only take hits from someone else’s wax if they ask you.

2. Heat the Nail Not the Rig

The only part of the dab rig that should be heated is the nail or banger. This is because the nail is the only part that is going to be heating up the wax. It is also made out of materials that are made to handle the high temperatures produced by the torch. Silicone dab rigs won’t be able to handle high temperature but the nails on it will.

This is a surefire way to get yourself kicked out of a dab circle.

3. Don’t Touch the Nail

When you grow used to using a bong, it becomes almost second nature to remove it to reveal the carb and to clear the device. Although it is highly unlikely that you are going to touch the nail, a lack of clear thinking may lead it. You are going to find out that the nail is very hot very quickly. Play it safe and try not to touch the heated nail or it will lead to burnt fingers.

4. Clear the chamber

Have you ever taken a hit of a bong in a smoking circle, only to leave some of the herb still burning and smoke still in the chamber? After you handed the bong over to the next person, did you receive a funny look from the person receiving the bong? This is because no one wants to  clear the chamber for you before they take a hit of their own. Clear your chamber each and every time, even if it means taking a few extra hits to get everything out of the device.

5. Clean the Nail and Don’t Leave Residue

There’s nothing worse than hosting a dab circle and finding that your device’s nail is covered in crusted, old dab residue. When there is a bit of old wax left on, the next person to use the torch on it will create a tiny fire in the banger because of the excess left behind. Be respectful and make sure that you clean up after yourself so that every dab session is enjoyable and successful.

6. Clean the Rig

When it comes to dab rigs, there is no immediate proof that a rig has been used after a session. Over time, dab residue begins to build in the walls of the dab rig, creating a deep layer of dark crust that affects the taste of the vapor. It also makes the rig itself look disgusting. If you’re hosting and if you plan on using your rig, no one is going to want to take a hit from it. Clean your rig before each use if it begins looking dirtier than it should be.

7. Heat the Nail for the Next Person

Using a dab rig is a process. In one hand, you have to prepare and use your torch. Then, you have to apply the torch to the dab nail and wait until it is heated and then do more waiting for it to cool down before you can apply your concentrates to the surface of the nail. To do this on your own or to have wait time between people can kill the mood. Be a friend and help to heat up the nail for the next person in the circle.

8. Set a Time

One of the most popular terms with stoners is “Don’t bogart the joint”. This comes from an old actor named Humphrey Bogart who would always keep a cigarette in his mouth. When it comes to dabbing, you can still use that phrase. To make sure no one is hogging up the dab rig while telling their wonderful story, set a timer.  The timer can be set for 60 seconds which is enough time to prep your rig, take a hit, cough for about 10-15 seconds, clean your nail and pass it to the next person.

9. Don’t Get Wax on Anything Other Than Dabbing Accessories

Wax concentrates are very messy when they are not used properly. Getting them on other things besides the dab nail or your dabber tool will result in a dirty surface and a loss of wax. Make sure that you don’t get the wax on anything other than the dabbing accessories. No one wants to clean up dab off of the floor, counter, tables, clothes, or rig.

10. Don’t Overdo It and Kill the Night

There’s a fine line between high and too high. When you’re dabbing with friends and you are accustomed to smoking weed, it can be easy to consume too much. When one consumes too much, it usually results in a high that is very intense. This will lead to having someone take care of you, which kills the night for the rest of the people in the circle. In short, dab responsibly.

Everyone talks about smoking circles but it is rare that someone covers dabbing circles. If you intend on hosting your own dabbing circle or if you have recently been invited to one, the 10 tips above will prepare you for how to dab with your friends while being respectful and meeting all the required.

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