One of the greatest things about cannabis is that there is a method of consumption that fits every preference, need, and lifestyle. While smoking cannabis is still a very celebrated method of ingestion, more and more, the cannabis community is embracing innovative ways to ingest cannabis while paying homage to traditional methods.

Here’s an overview of just some of the ways people are choosing to ingest their cannabis, coupled with some interesting facts about the origins of some of our favourite smoking methods:

Pipe Dreams

Smoking cannabis out of a pipe goes back as far as recorded time. Back in 500 B.C., Herodotus described Scythians inhaling the fumes of burning leaves through pipe-like devices. In tribal history, Native Americans and Canadians also used pipes for smoking dry herbs in tribal ceremonies its recreational use was discovered.

Early trade, particularly that of tobacco, furthered the use of pipes as a smoking method for cannabis; they are user-friendly, and many have beautiful aesthetics that make your smoking experience look like a piece of art. Head to your local head shop to see some of the ways artistry and pipe culture have collided – you may be surprised at what you see!

Pick It, Pack It, Fire It Up

The use of the bong goes back 2,400 years to Asia and Africa. Derived from the Thai word “buang”, early bongs were made from bamboo. Water bong use also grew with the trade of tobacco.

If you’re into cannabis lore, and the connection between the Grateful Dead and cannabis culture, you may have heard of Bob Snodgras, who made bongs on tour with the Grateful Dead. Bongs are a heavy-hitting method of consuming cannabis. It’s always advised that you ingest one “bong hit”, and assess the effects before taking another, as one bong hit can have you spent.

Roll It Up

Although one of the most common methods of ingestion, joints are a more modern invention. The origin dates back to Mexico to 1865, where a University professor noted that his workers were mixing cannabis into their tobacco.

Ever hear the term “roach” to describe the end of your cannabis joint? Another fun fact of cannabis lore is that the word “roach” got its name from the song “La Cucaracha” (The Cockroach), which tells the story of a cockroach who can’t get up because he’s out of cannabis to smoke. There are many ways to roll your cannabis into a joint; most do it by hand, or choose to use a simple rolling machine that gets your doobies near perfect. You can also buy cone joints at your local head shop that helps you to pack your own Bob Marley-like cone.

woman smoking joint

A Little Dab’ll Do Ya

You may have heard about the practice of “dabbing” as it gains more popularity in the cannabis world. Dabbing is all about embracing the world of cannabis concentrates, which are often called “wax” or “shatter” among other things.  Dabbing is a more involved process that involves a water pipe, a “nail”, a dabber, and a hood, along with a torch device to properly heat the nail and your concentrate.

Dabbing isn’t for newbies, as cannabis concentrates are very high in potency, and a little goes a long way (“a little dab’ll do ya!”). For those who want to kick their consumption up a notch, visit your local head shop to get educated and purchase the right supplies. Check out YouTube for some how-to videos before you try it or try it for the first time with a more experienced dabber.


Vaporizing cannabis has become one of the most convenient, discreet, and clean ways to consume cannabis.  There was once a time where vaporizing was a highly involved process, where it required a huge tabletop device to burn off the vapors of your cannabis flower. Now, vaporizing technology has advanced so much that you can easily slip your vaporizer in your pocket.

Vaporizing involves heating your cannabis flower or a specially-formulated through a heating coil at a temperature usually above 200 degrees C; the vapor created is not the flower you’re inhaling, but rather the cannabinoids and terpenes within the flower. creating a vapor to inhale from the cannabinoids and terpenes contained in your flower. You can also vape through a specially-made vaping oil (that is different than the ones you consume orally) that will come in pre-filled cartridges, disposable forms, or in refillable form.

Interested in vaping? Try Canndora’s ATMOS Jump Dry Herb Vaporizer – we highly recommend it!

Down the Hatch!

Edibles are increasing in popularity in cannabis culture, although they won’t be immediately available in the post-legalization landscape until they are better understood by Health Canada. To make edibles, you need either an oil, tincture or decarboxylated (activated by heat) flower. See Canndora’s “Elevated Hostess” series for some great recipes to make your own edibles at home!

The effects of edibles may not be apparent until 45-60 minutes after taking them, so it’s always advised you wait until at least an hour before ingesting more.  

 cannabis-infused cookies

Under Your Tongue

Sublingual, or under the tongue administration is usually done with a cannabis oil that has been carefully extracted from the cannabis plant, or through tinctures that have been extracted through oil. It’s not advisable that you use an alcohol tincture under your tongue. That could burn!

When taking something sublingually, you are usually to hold it for about 30 or so seconds under your tongue for it to adequately absorb in the mucous membranes under your tongue. You may not feel the effects right away of a cannabis oil taken sublingually, but give it time!

Back Door Delivery

We can bet you never thought of ingesting your cannabis through the “back door”. In fact, cannabis suppositories deliver around 80% of the cannabis medicine, oral ingestion delivers around 35% and smoking around 15%, due to the fact anal cavity there are more mucous membranes than any part of your body.

Similarly, for the women, there are increasingly more vaginal suppository products coming to markets that are used to help with menstrual cramps, or painful women’s reproductive health issues. Cannabis company Foria even makes cannabis-infused tampons!

Slather it On

Most commonly used to reduce inflammation and pain, topicals are gaining more traction in the cannabis space, although you won’t be seeing topicals on the shelves of legal cannabis stores anytime soon. 

The health and beauty industries have also caught on to cannabis-infused salves, balms, and ointments, recognizing that cannabis infusions can promote youthful skin, and even help with skin conditions like eczema, acne and psoriasis. In the bedroom, topicals like those made by Foria, and Health Canada’s Licenced Producer Hydropothecary are designed to stimulate the sex organs.

See our article, “How to (Legally) Celebrate Cannabis Legalization on October 17” to see a great tip about making your own cannabis topicals from company Earth Kisses Sky.

cannabis topicals

Find Your Own Groove

Sometimes it’s just fun to switch it up in terms of the methods and devices you use to get your cannabis on. Experiment with ways to consume, while always going back to your favourite tried and true method.

As the legal cannabis market develops, we can (very slowly) expect to see more methods of consumption hit the shelves like edibles and topicals, but until then, experiment at home and see what awesome methods of consumption you can come up with!

Looking for more great content? Stream the Womxn, Wellness and Cannabis Conference to learn from the experts and celebrate the feminine cannabis experience.