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Why Choose a Water Pipe Over a Hand Pipe?

 2 min read

At DankStop, we get asked often about the benefits of using a water pipe and the differences between them and a hand pipe. For those of you that have the same question or have asked us before, you can rest assured we will clear up the confusion once and for all. The most obvious is in the name; a water pipe is a larger glass pipe that contains water while a hand pipe is portable and handheld. But there are more in-depth differences that make a glass water pipe safer and can give you a more enjoyable smoking experience. Here’s a short list of some of the pros to using a water pipe or a bubbler

  • PercolatorsA percolator, or perc for short, is a feature found in water pipes that involves holes or slits. As smoke travels from the joint to the mouthpiece it passes through the perc (or multiple percs in the case of larger water pipes) and the holes/slits diffuse and filter the smoke. This results in a smoother hit overall. To learn more about percolators, check out our article on the different types of percs.

  • Size → The increased size that water pipes have over hand pipes brings a crucial advantage to the user. Because of the pure volume of space that comes with increased size, you can get larger hits of tobacco in one pull rather than having to pack smaller amounts of tobacco multiple times in a hand pipe to achieve the same results. This allows you to conserve your tobacco and save effort and money while getting the same desired effects.

  • Use of Water → A tobacco pipe that uses water gives you more to gain than simply enjoying the cool visual effect of watching it bubble as you hit it (although we completely agree that it’s quite awesome). By putting water into your pipe, your smoke passes through it and is cooled down before it reaches the mouthpiece. This way you won’t feel the harsh burn on your lungs and throat that a hand pipe can sometimes leave you with.

  • Aesthetics and Functionality → Due to their larger size and the inclusion of percolators, water pipes give glassblowers more opportunities to unleash their creativity. Glass manufacturers can create innovative designs and imaginative percolation systems that can transform a glass pipe into a piece of heady glass art. In addition to fabricating a pipe that’s beautiful to look at, glass artists can add features that make your smoking experience perfectly tailored to your preferences. This includes splashguards, bent or straight necks, different types of mouthpieces, an assortment of designs for bases, varying chamber sizes and shapes, specific percs, and countless more features.

  • Health → Using a glass water pipe provides many health benefits to the smoker. As discussed earlier, percolators are a huge factor in this. The filtering and diffusing of your smoke makes you receive not just smoother hits, but cleaner ones as well. Hand pipes do not have room for percs because of their compact size, while water pipes can have anywhere on average from one to four percs. Since the smoke has to travel through the water before it reaches your mouth, some of the toxins can get left behind and your smoke uses the water as a purifying system.

As you can see, the positives to using a water pipe over a hand pipe heavily outweigh the negatives. Although a bubbler or water pipe is generally going to be more expensive, it will pay for itself in the long run due to less tobacco needed to achieve your desired effects. The benefits to your health, the aesthetics, the ability for more features, the higher function, and the larger size all point to one glaring conclusion. Water pipes are more beneficial to any smoker than hand pipes.


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