There are seemingly endless ways to consume cannabis. You can eat or drink it by pulling out the THC and making edibles. Or you can vaporize weed using any number of desktop or portable vaporizers. Then, of course, there’s the whole world of concentrates. And when it comes to smoking, you can use a water pipe or a spoon. But one of the most classic ways to consume weed is by rolling it up yourself. This guide will explain the difference between joints, blunts, and spliffs.
The Difference Between Joints, Blunts, and Spliffs: An Overview
There are a couple key features that define the difference between joints, blunts, and spliffs. They have to do with the type of paper used to roll up your herb and the mixture of stuff inside the roll. Here’s a quick breakdown.
Rolling Paper or Tobacco Paper?
Joints and spliffs are both rolled using rolling papers. This paper is usually thin and somewhat transparent. When rolling a joint or a spliff, most people also use a paper filter. This filter is often called a crutch. In addition to filtering the smoke, it makes it easier to smoke your joint or spliff without burning your fingertips.
But even with a crutch, there’s still going to be that last little bit that you can’t quite smoke because it burns your fingers. That’s the roach. If you’re a smoker on a budget, don’t toss your roaches. Save them and recycle them. Or, if you’re feeling creative, try making art out of them.
In contrast to joints and spliffs, blunts are defined primarily by the fact that they’re made using tobacco paper instead of regular rolling paper. This kind of paper is basically a dried tobacco leaf designed primarily for rolling cigars.
If you’re into blunts, you can buy empty blunt wraps. Or you can hit your nearest 7-Eleven and pick up a Swisher Sweet or any other cigarillo. Cut it open, empty out the tobacco, repack the wrap with weed, and roll up your blunt.
What’s In It?
The other key feature defining the difference between joints, blunts, and spliffs is what’s inside. Joints and blunts both use pure cannabis. Spliffs, on the other hand, use a mixture of tobacco and cannabis.
Joints and blunts are clearly the more expensive route, since they only use weed. Spliffs can be a good way to stretch your stash, since you’ll be mixing a little bit of weed with a little bit of tobacco.
Joints vs. Blunts vs. Spliffs: Different Effects
Another key factor in the difference between joints, blunts, and spliffs is the effects they produce. They each give consumers a slightly different experience, so test them out and see which one you like the best.
If you are a regular weed smoker, then joints will be right up your alley. Since they contain only weed and they are rolled in traditional rolling paper, the effects will be produced only by the cannabis you are smoking. So if you rolled up some indica, expect the same body highs you always get from those strains. Similarly, if you filled your joint with a sativa strain, or a sativa-dominant hybrid, look for effects that hit your head.
Things get a little different when we’re talking about blunts and spliffs, since both of these introduce tobacco into the mix. Blunts tend to hit the hardest. That’s because they use a lot of weed—cannabis is the only thing inside a blunt. But at the same time, the tobacco paper it’s rolled up in is also strong. Expect to feel a fast-hitting, heady buzz from the tobacco paper that will be followed up by a potent dose of whatever effects your weed gives you.
Spliffs are kind of in between these two poles. Since a spliff is half weed, half tobacco, expect a mixed experience. Spliffs generally won’t hit you as hard as either a joint or a blunt. When you smoke one, you will probably notice a quick initial buzz from the tobacco. That will be followed up by a mellow dose of cannabis.
The fact that joints, blunts, and spliffs produce such different effects is one of the reasons why cannabis fans love rolling them. It gives you a lot of flexibility to choose the kind of experience you have.
Other Key Differences
The last factors that make up the difference between joints, blunts, and spliffs have to do with their scent and flavor profiles. These differences have a lot more to do with the fine-grained details of the smoking experience, but if you’re into how your smoke smells and tastes these will be key considerations.
Joints are the most straightforward. Rolling papers do not add much by way of distinctive smells or tastes. You will get a slight residual taste from the simple fact that you’re burning paper. But beyond that, the smells and tastes you get from a joint will come almost entirely from the terpenes of your weed.
When you smoke a blunt, the smells and tastes of your bud will be complemented by the strong, rich, tobacco odors and flavors of your blunt wrap. Rolling and smoking a blunt gives you some flexibility to explore different smells and tastes. That’s because blunt wraps—whether you get them empty or you deconstruct a cigar or cigarillo—come in a huge variety of flavors. Purists might not appreciate the additives contained in flavored tobacco papers, but many blunt smokers love mixing and matching the flavors of the blunt wrap with the flavors of their bud.
And finally, spliffs will give you scent and flavor profiles similar to those of a blunt. As with a joint, don’t expect anything too strong from the actual rolling paper. Instead, the bulk of the smells and flavors will come from the combo of tobacco and weed you’ve got rolled up in your spliff. As with blunts, experiment. Try mixing different types of tobacco with different strains and see what you come up with.
The Final Hit
Rolling and smoking joints, blunts, and spliffs remain one of the fundamental pieces of weed culture. They each have something slightly different to offer. So give them all a shot and see which one you like the best. In the end, you may discover that each one is best in a certain time and setting. Either way, they should all be part of your cannabis consuming repertoire.