No one can argue that the cannabis industry has moved into the mainstream over the past decade. Legal weed has gone from a pipe dream to a reality, with 18 states and U.S. territories allowing for legal pot for adult use, and an additional 19 establishing comprehensive medical cannabis programs. As part of the legal rollout of recreational cannabis, you've likely seen head shops and smoking accessory stores popping up in your neighborhoods like weeds, selling stuff like disposable vapes and dry herb vaporizers, classic dried cannabis flower, CBD, and various types of cannabis concentrates. One staple of these old-school head shops is something that most cannabis aficionados and OG stoners have seen before but likely haven't tried themselves: the gas mask bong!
A gas mask bong is usually made up of a plastic or silicone face mask, a standard glass or acrylic water pipe, a classic downstem, and a set of adjustable head straps to hold the whole thing on your head. A gas mask bong is a classic novelty item that old-school stoners know and have seen in various pop culture settings, but haven’t actually gotten their hands on or used. That's where we come in!
Gentleman Toker is here to break down exactly how a gas mask pipe works, how it’s different from your typical dab rig or regular bong, the pros and cons of using one, and, finally, how to make one yourself. Our goal here is to explain how a gas mask bong works, and help you figure out if getting one of your own is worth your time and money.
So without further ado, let's get into it!
What is a Gas Mask Bong?
Basically, a gas mask bong is a hotbox for the person wearing it. It’s like a standard bong or bubbler, just taken to a next level thanks to the gas mask set-up with an internal mouthpiece. All in all there's really not too much that's special when it comes to a gas mask bong — it's really just the sum of its parts! With that in mind, let's take a a closer look at the individual parts that go into making this gas mask unique.
What are gas mask bongs made of?
As the name suggests, gas mask bongs are a fusion of a standard gas mask and a regular glass or acrylic bong. For those unfamiliar with the components that go into both of those devices, we'll break it down for you here!
The face mask part of a gas mask bong usually features an air-tight silicone or other solid type of hard, non-malleable material, often available in bright, fun colors and patterns like camouflage, which is then secured to your head by at least one set of adjustable straps. It also features a special mouthpiece that you won’t find on other masks, allowing a fully functional bong to be attached to it and smoked from!
Typically, the bongs attached to a gas mask bong are regular, standard sized bongs. Sometimes it’s a bubbler, sometimes it’s an acrylic bong, sometimes it’s a beaker bong. No matter what style of bong it is, it will be familiar to you if you’ve smoked out of a bong before. It has bong water in the chamber, it has a carb that you need to cover with your finger tip, and it features a bowl that can be packed with dry herb (don’t forget your grinder!) and lit. Just like with a regular bong, it will be a smoking experience that will get you very high.
What is the difference between a gas mask bong and a regular bong?
The main difference between a gas mask bong and your standard, regular bong is the presence of an airtight seal around your face.
When the mask and the bong meet in the middle with an airtight seal, allowing users to spark up and use the bong just like they normally would, there’s an additional hot box effect thanks to the airtight seal all around your face! That keeps all that cannabinoid-rich smoke trapped in the mask, getting into your system even more with every inhale and exhale.
With a regular bong, you're losing a lot of the smoke to the surrounding air. If you're hot boxing a room or car, you’re still breathing in a lower concentration than you would if your smoke was contained in a gas mask. That's the tradeoff you're making when it comes to bongs. When it comes to bong/ gas mask combos, you're getting all the high of a regular bong hit, with even more cannabinoid power thanks to that airtight seal!
How Do To Use a Gas Mask Bong
If you’ve used a regular bong before, then you know how to use a gas mask bong. The only difference between a gas mask bong and a regular bong is that airtight seal that we already mentioned.
Just like with a regular bong, you use a grinder to break up dried cannabis buds, you pack that cannabis into a bowl and light it, the acrylic bong attached to the front of the gas mask bong has a carb you’ll have to cover, and you inhale while lighting the bowl — same as ever. The only difference between a gas mask bong and a regular bong is that the smoke you inhale and exhale stays captured in the face mask for you to keep breathing in throughout your smoke session.
What is the mouthpiece on a gas mask bong?
Perhaps one of the most important parts of a properly functioning gas mask bong is the mouthpiece. This the part that links the bong to the airtight mask portion of the gas mask bong, and it's constructed in a way that allows the user to inhale the cannabis smoke from the bong while the bong is still attached to the mask. That's right, the mouthpiece is attached to the bong itself. so when you're sparking your bowl of cannabis, covering your carb, and pulling to inhale the smoke, it's super easy to do!
Benefits of a Gas Mask Bong?
While it might seem like a gimmick with no real, practical purposes, using a gas mask bong instead of a regular bong does have some benefits. Firstly, it’s a great way to get the most out of your cannabis. Using a gas mask bong ensures you are breathing in the most smoke possible without wasting it, letting you get higher, for longer, on less cannabis. In today’s day and age when money is tight for so many, wasting weed by smoking the same old joints and blunts that burn through your cannabis flower rapidly isn’t always ideal. The gas mask bong is a great way to get the most bang for your buck.
On top of that, in the age of COVID, a gas mask bong is a more hygienic way of having a smoke session. Instead of passing a bong around that everyone puts their mouth on, spreading germs in the process, the gas mask bong is a totally separate and isolated experience. Everyone can get a mask of their own, pack their bong’s bowl with their favorite cannabis strain, and get super high together without ever swapping a bong! It’s the stoner version of working smarter instead of harder!
What is the Best Gas Mask Bong?
Now that you know all about how gas mask bongs work, how to use them, and what the benefits of using them are, it makes total sense to go to your local head shop and get one of your own, right? Well, hold your horses, folks. Before you grab that product and head to the checkout counter, you should do your research on how much they cost, if you can make one yourself, and if the juice is actually worth the squeeze when it comes to gas mask bongs.
Can You Make a Gas Mask Bong?
If you're into stoner engineering and have a few spare parts laying around, you can try to make a gas mask bong for yourself! While it likely won't be as air tight as one you'd buy from the head shop, with some duct tape, some elbow grease, and a little bit of ingenuity, you should be able to get it sorted out in no time.
All you’ll need to try to make a gas mask bong for your own is a good quality gas mask, from online or your local army supply store, a bong with a mouth a similar shape to the front hole of the gas mask, and some tape to try to make it as air tight as possible. To combine everything, just line the mouth of the bong with the opening of the gas mask, then secure it there with your tape. Once you do that and seal it as air tight as possible, the next step is to try to use it! If it works, you’ll probably be able to get a few uses out of it before you have to take it apart to clean the bong or swap out the water. Until then, however, you have yourself a good quality, homemade gas mask bong!
How Much is a Gas Mask Bong?
If you’re looking for a gas mask bong that you can take apart and use without needing half a roll of duct tape or scouring online shops to find the perfect gas mask, then your best bet is to just go to your local head shop and get one of your own. Thankfully, these little devices are pretty cheap! You can likely find a good quality gas mask bong online or at your local head shop for around $50, which isn’t too bad at all. No need for interest-free payment plans here, right?
If you’re buying from your local head shop make sure to ask lots of questions to figure out if it’s right for you, and if you’re buying online make sure to check out customer reviews and be prepared to wait a few business days while your new gas mask bong is being shipped to you.
The Bottom Line: Is a Gas Mask Bong Actually Worth It?
In our opinion, smoking out of a gas mask bong is a fun and unique way to kick your smoke session up a notch. Not only are you getting higher on less weed thanks to the air tight tech, but you’re able to do so while looking like a smoked out version of Darth Vader!
Gas mask bongs are worth trying, at the very least, whether you make your own at home, order one online, or pick one up from your local head shop! We highly recommend its mini hot boxing effects, stylish aesthetics, and the uniqueness of the experience for stoners who have never used one before. It’s definitely worth it!