Vape pens have many of their own benefits: they’re neat, discreet, easy to use, and efficient. But shopping for a vape pen can be challenging. There are a lot of options on the market, including disposable vape pens, separate batteries and cartridges, and then the sheer number of oil cartridges available. It can all be dizzying. Fret not, here’s a guide for vape shopping next time you’re in a dispensary.
Do you want to vape flower or concentrate?
There are two types of vaporizer options: you can vaporize a concentrate like cannabis oil, or you can vaporize straight up flower. If you want to the benefit of whole flower cannabis, opt for a conduction vaporizer like the pocket-size Pax or the larger Volcano. Forget about having to grind it up and roll a joint: you merely put your bud in a compartment and smoke the vapor from the heated up flower. If you prefer not to handle the plant material at all and want something easier like a pen, go for the oil cartridge vaporizers.
Do you want to regulate your dose?
Sometimes it can be difficult to tell how much THC or CBD or other cannabinoids you’re getting per puff. If you pull longer on the pen, take a deeper inhale, or hold it in your lungs for a longer amount of time, you’ll be getting variable amounts of cannabinoids. If you’d rather regulate your dose, opt for a pen like hmbldt — the disposable pens, named after the effects like “bliss,” “sleep,” or “arouse,” will buzz and won’t let you continue to pull on the vape after you hit a certain dose of 2.25 milligrams.
Be picky with batteries, oil cartridges, and disposable pens — they’re not all good for you
If you’re buying a cartridge, make sure it has a ceramic core and is made from stainless steel. Don’t buy one that’s made from plastic or low grade wire — it’s bad for your health. Also be sure that your vape oil is free of polyethylene glycol or PEG, a known carcinogen, or propylene glycol, which can cause sore throat, muscle pain, or strong smelling urine. And be sure that the terpenes, or aromatic chemicals, added back into the concentrate are from cannabis or some other organic source.
Read the packaging and make sure your cannabis oil is free of pesticides
There’s little regulation around vapes. Often times, vape oil is made from bottom of the barrell cannabis that’s been sprayed with pesticides — and when extracted into a concentrate, those pesticides toxins get concentrated, too. Be sure your product is lab tested, so as not to defeat the purpose of using it for wellness.