As sustainability becomes a priority within the world around us, it is important to note the comprehensive benefits of the flourishing hemp plant. Its influence spans over the past 10,000 years, as hemp fibers can be refined into a wide range of commercial items from textiles to building materials to protein-rich foods. Taking advantage of these different uses has led to basic yet innovative products that can benefit many different people and activities.

Hempwick, produced by working hemp fibers into twine and then coating the twine in beeswax, is an incredibly versatile twine that can be used for almost any activity imaginable. Most popular in the medical marijiuana realm, it replaces the potentially harmful act of igniting marijunana with a butane lighter.

 

What is Hemp Wick?

Hemp wick is a natural and safe alternative used by smokers in lieu of lighters and matches. Normal hemp twine is too dry to burn on its own, so by adding beeswax it allows the twine to burn at a slow and steady pace. It burns cleaner, with fewer carbon emissions, and  eliminates the risk of inhaling flint dust from a normal lighter. By using hemp wick over a lighter, one will experience a more flavorful, convenient, and authentic way to smoke.

The theory is inhaling hot butane from a lighter or the combustible chemicals from a match is worse for the body than a flame from all-natural, wax-coated hemp twine. Hemp wick also burns at a lower temperature than a lighter, meaning that hits are smoother and there’s more potential to appreciate terpenes

 

Why is using lighters and matches bad for you?

Most lighters that are used for the combustion of marijuana are filled with butane – a type of ignitable fuel – that produces a blue flame indicating it is hotter than a normal flame. This gas can have both short-term and long-term effects on overall health.

Extended exposure to butane can lead to the onset of symptoms like suffocation, drowsiness, and narcosis. [1]  Lighters mostly are butane lighters, and they not only burn at a higher temperature than the ideal one for marijuana, but they also lead to the occurrence of various ailments. Similar to butane lighter, a Zippo lighter also poses the same problem because it increases the risk of the butane being inhaled. These lighters also pose the risk of destroying the cannabinoids and terpenes of the herb being consumed. 

 

Pros of Using Hemp Wick to Smoke

  • Health: The blue flame from a normal lighter can be toxic. The fuel inside is called butane, and it’s a “colorless gas with a faint petroleum-like odor.” This gas can have harmful effects on one’s health. 
  • Taste: Without the fumes from lighters and matches, it allows for a smoother and more flavorful hit without the harsh feeling in the back of the throat. Marijuana strains have unique tastes because of the terpene profiles among other things, so using a hemp wick allows for a tastier hit. Not only is a hemp wick longer lasting than butane lighters, and much better for the environment (they are biodegradable), this simple accessory can also greatly improve the flavor of a hit. Butane often burns so hot that it destroys a number of the terpenes found in marijuana, which are not only responsible for the characteristic aroma (which aids in the flavor), they also act synergistically with other cannabinoids to provide greater medicinal qualities and an overall better “high” due to the entourage effect.
  • Experience: Since hemp wick burns slowly at a low temperature, the marijuana effect it creates is both cleaner and less harsh to the lungs. Because there is not any butane or potassium chlorate being inhaled, users are likely to not feel uncomfortable during smoking sessions. Also, since it burns at a low temperature, it reduces the probability of cannabinoids being destroyed. So, users can expect to get a lot more “high” when one uses hemp wick than when other methods of lighting up is selected.

 

Cons of Using Hemp Wick to Smoke

  • Availability: Hemp wick can sometimes be hard to find at a local smoke shop or corner store. While it can be purchased online from a variety of retailers, sometimes online isn’t an option for users and it has to be shipped which takes some time.
  • Portability: Carrying around a big spool of hemp wick is not always possible. While one can unwrap just a small section of the wick to cut off and bring with, it can easily get lost.
  • Inconvenience: Some spools of hemp wick are more difficult to work with than others. The flame does not always stay lit on the wick, meaning users must relight it every time adding an additional step to the process required to smoke marijuana.

How Do I Use A Hemp Wick?

Hemp wicks are easy to use because of their compact design and flexibility. One can easily manipulate it in their hand into any form they need. Be aware that some hemp wicks can burn quickly, so it is important to get the right length of the string from the beginning. By giving a small bit of wick a “test run” to get an idea of what will be needed when actually using it. Users can wrap hemp wick around their lighter so they’ll have it on hand right when they need it. Keeping the two together allows one to have everything they need conveniently in one hand.

Begin by taking a strand and wrapping it tightly around a lighter, starting at the base and twisting it around the lighter until the top is reached. The beeswax coating will keep the wick in place and it’ll be easy to place the end into the flame when lighting a bowl or water pipe. Lighter extensions can also be used, which is inserted or attached on a normal lighter that is equipped with a convenient compartment to store the wick. This is not necessary, but is a great alternative for those who don’t want to wrap the wick around the lighter or carry around an extra container.

Then ignite the lighter and allow the end of the strand of hemp wick to catch a flame. Use the flame to light the product and once finished just blow the flame out! 

Residents of Florida can qualify for their medical marijuana card if they have a health condition that has been approved by the state. By seeing a Florida Medical Marijuana Doctor, Floridians and seasonal residents can start their journey to be able to legally find symptom relief with the help of medical marijuana products. This quick pre-qualifying survey can determine whether or not one might qualify under state guidelines for their Florida Medical Marijuana State ID Card.

 

[1] https://emergency.cdc.gov/agent/benzene/basics/facts.asp

[2]https://www.cdc.gov/niosh/npg/npgd0068.html

[3] https://www.leafly.com/news/cannabis-101/hemp-wick-cannabis-101

[4] http://www.ufrgs.br/imunovet/molecular_immunology/chemicalcauses.htm
[5] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4563975/

[6] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK201460/