Weed to Know: How to roll your cannabis


Collegian | Madelyn Hendricks

Miles Buchan, Staff Reporter

When it comes to cannabis being rolled up into something smokable, there are many methods of doing so and even more terms to learn. Starting out, it can be easy to become lost in a sea of slang, but with just a bit of clarification, you’ll be spared untold amounts of confusion.

One basic but crucial distinction to make is that between a joint and a blunt. These are two of the most basic categories that weed can be rolled into. Both offer different variations that will change your rolling and smoking experience.


A joint is a form that is rolled with a thin paper, edged with a sticky, gum-like line that sticks once licked. You can get paper packs in different sizes, materials and amounts. Cheaper options are usually stark white paper, which can have a stronger and unpleasant taste that is reduced in organic, hemp-based paper.

Larger papers, not surprisingly, can be used for making larger joints and also may make it easier to roll for beginners. It’s different for everyone, but in my experience, rolling a good joint takes a lot more care and finesse than blunts do. This is because of the thinness of the paper, which makes the process feel more delicate and, in turn, easier to mess up.

It’s also possible to pre-roll your paper around an object or on its own into a cone, then pack ground flower inside. This is a nice, easy method that works more quickly and more consistently than hand rolling at times. There are many tips and tricks to become better at rolling, but mostly, it will just take practice.

“Pro tip: Use a lighter to lightly heat the outside of the blunt to seal the bond, but be careful not to burn a hole.”

Now that we’ve covered the basic components of a joint, let’s do the same for blunts. Blunts are different from joints in that the material used to roll them is not typically paper but instead processed or raw leaf. This leaf is often tobacco, which, when smoked, can change your high and make the initial smoke more active or intense.

If you’re sensitive to tobacco, this may really throw you off, resulting in a sick or nauseated feeling. Fortunately, blunts can also be rolled with hemp leaf sometimes infused with additional CBD. This option offers a similar smoking experience and head high without the risk of negative side effects.

Blunt wraps come in a ton of different flavors from natural to fruity. Even though some joint papers are flavored, they are never nearly as flavorful as any kind of blunt wrap. This may relate to the thickness and type of material used for blunt wraps. Pair the right flavor with the right strain, and you can really enhance the taste of your smoke.

Blunts come either as empty wraps, ready-to-fill or as “stogies,” which are packed full of tobacco. When empty, you can get straight to rolling or use the cone method to pre-wrap and pack. However, when your wraps are full, you’ll take a different approach.

When you’ve got full stogies, which you want to use for wraps, you have two ways to empty them. You can split the wrap cleanly in a line and pour out the material. You’ll then have to roll it, lick and stick.

This part specifically is more difficult than with a joint because there is no “gum line,” which means you have to get both connecting sides moist before sticking together. Pro tip: Use a lighter to lightly heat the outside of the blunt to seal the bond, but be careful not to burn a hole. Other than that, for me, blunts roll easier because the leaf is thicker and more forgiving than joint papers.

If you want a blunt but don’t feel like rolling, then you’re not out of luck. Rather than splitting the wrap, place it between two fingers. Then, starting with the open end, gently roll back and forth to loosen the tobacco inside. After this is done, you’ll be left with a wrap that is both empty and at its widest capacity, and now all you must do is pack.

Don’t forget: You can always use the tobacco product left over to mix in with your weed if you’re a fan of the tobacco head rush. It’s a good way to supplement an already good feeling and to preserve your cannabis. Take some of that tobacco and mix it into a joint, and now you’ve got a “spliff.”

Lastly, in case you thought this couldn’t go further, you can add THC concentrates such as distillate, wax, live resin, kief and hash to your rollables. Adding these will drastically increase the levels of THC and surely make for a different experience. More than anything else though, this will affect how your torch burns, so watch out for uneven burns or “canoes.”

Reach Miles Buchan at cannabis@collegian.com or on Twitter @buchanmiles.