There’s no better time to start using marijuana than now. Aside from the widespread legalization of the plant, after all, the social stigma surrounding its use has lessened, too. Even better, it has also become easier to obtain legally. So, here comes the question: how do you smoke weed for the first time?

From there, expect a barrage of other questions. Should you use a bong or a joint? How do you even inhale? How many hits should you take? How do you smoke a group of friends without embarrassing yourself? It just goes on and on. For complete novices, it can get overwhelming pretty fast.

But don’t worry. If this is your first time hopping onto the 420 train, you’ve come to the right place. Below, we’ve compiled some of the most useful tips to make your first time as satisfying and pleasurable as you imagined it to be.

How Do You Smoke Weed for the First Time?

Let’s get this out of the way. If you’re a cannabis virgin, knowing how to smoke a joint or pipe is not enough. You have to think about the preparations, too. Not to mention, you also need to know what to do (and what not do) once you’re all blitzed up. And if you’re smoking with ganja-loving friends, make sure to acquaint yourself with stoner etiquette as well. All of these are key to making your first weed-smoking experience as delightful as can be.

Teen Smoking weed
Girl watching while the guy smoke weed

I. Before the Smoking Session

Clear Your Schedule

Before getting started, make sure to get your responsibilities out of the way. Remember, you still don’t know how the plant will affect you. When you’re stoned out of your wits, you might not be able to get anything done. You will also need all the time you could get to deal with any unexpected reactions. It’s probably a bad idea, for example, to blaze up that joint an hour or so before you have to go to work.

Get Ready for the Munchies

Extreme bouts of hunger – aka, the munchies – are a common side effect of marijuana consumption. When you’re high out of your mind and struck with intense hunger, you’ll want to eat literally anything you could get your hands on. Most probably, you’ll find yourself reaching for junk food and sweets.

So, to keep your calorie and sugar intake in check, surround yourself with healthy snacks instead. That includes fruits, veggie chips, mixed nuts, and Greek yogurt. Oh, make sure you have plenty of water within arm’s reach, too. You’ll need it.

Hydrate and Eat Beforehand

To help avoid the munchies, drink water like an athlete and eat some nourishing meals before the toking session. When you’re feeling satiated, then you’re less likely to crave for food. As a bonus, staying well-hydrated also helps keep the cottonmouth (or dry mouth) at bay.

Street Food for munchies
A typical street food and drinks

Don’t Consume Other Mind-Altering Substances

Don’t even think about smoking pot alongside other drugs, including alcohol, tobacco, cocaine, and so on. It will not elevate the psychoactive experience in any way. Instead, you will only be signing yourself up for a bad trip and other adverse side effects.

Note: Don’t combine marijuana with caffeine either. You can try it out once you’re already accustomed to THC – but not now.

Choose Your Preferred Smoking Method

There are plenty of ways to smoke marijuana. You can use joints, blunts, pipes, bubblers, bongs, or bowls. Ultimately, it all comes down to your preferences.

Bongs are generally ill-advised for beginners as they tend to produce too-powerful rips. Meanwhile, joints and blunts are among the easiest way to smoke, but rolling them does have a learning curve. Opting for pre-rolled cones, however, is a simple fix. This leaves us with pipes or bowls, which are simple to use and create beginner-friendly smoke.

II. During the Smoking Session

Smoke in the Right Environment

Where you toke plays a crucial role in the quality of your high. Make sure that you’re in a safe, comfortable space where you can indulge in marijuana without judgment, such as your home. After all, if you’re too worried about being caught by the authorities, then you won’t be able to make the most out of your first mind-altering spin. Instead, you’ll just be wracked with anxiety and paranoia.

Never Smoke in Public

Just don’t. It doesn’t even matter which state you live in. In the United States, smoking weed in public is against the law and could land you in trouble. Even if you try to be discreet about it, the overpowering smell of marijuana smoke will likely just give you away.

Smoke with People You Know

When smoking weed for the first time, it’s best to do so in the company of close friends. Remember, this is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. You don’t want shady strangers to ruin the fun for you. You also never know what they will do to you once your mind is already flying high. Besides, with strangers, you’re more likely to give in to peer pressure and consume more weed than you can handle. That’s a recipe for disaster.

Two girl smoking together
Two Women Smoking Getting High

Inhale Properly

You read that correctly. There’s a proper way of drawing in marijuana smoke to maximize the concentration of cannabinoids that will get into your bloodstream. More than that, it also minimizes coughing and choking while helping prevent other pulmonary health risks.

Remember these tips before taking that first hit:

  • Don’t rush it. Instead, take slow, measured drags to avoid irritating and overwhelming your lungs.
  • Start with shallow inhalations. You can draw in more deeply once you become more comfortable with it.
  • Try to take smaller hits.
  • Don’t hold the smoke in the lungs.
  • To take in the highest amount of THC, slowly inhale around two-thirds of your puff. Follow it up with a deep intake of air.
  • If you can, regularly perform some deep breathing exercises to improve the way you inhale.

Make sure to familiarize yourself with the proper inhalation practices early on. The last thing you want is for bad habits to develop. Also, be aware that the inhalation techniques may vary slightly depending on your smoking method.

Take It Slowly

Start with just a puff. Stand by for the next ten to twenty minutes, waiting for the effects to kick in. If you feel like you can handle some more, take another hit. Otherwise, just sit back, relax, and savor your first dose of cannabis.

Pass to the Left

If you’re smoking a joint with a circle of friends, remember the adage: “Puff, puff, pass.” It simply means you have to hand the joint to the next person after taking a couple of hits. But since you’re just a beginner, a single puff will suffice. The unspoken rule is to pass the jay to your left, but if your smoke circle has established a different rotation, then make sure to stick to it. What is important is that you never hog the weed. Oh, and don’t forget to pass the lighter, too.

Note: If you’re smoking a bong, remember to pass it immediately to the next person after taking a hit. No exceptions. Doing it twice is akin to double-dipping your chips, which is just plain gross.

Don’t Ever Pass a Cashed Bowl

If a bowl is “cashed,” it means that the buds have already been used up, leaving only the ashy dregs behind. In other words, it’s virtually impossible to smoke. Ideally, you would offer to repack. But since it’s just your first time and you probably don’t know how to load a bowl yet, just pass it back to the owner or the session host.

Not sure if the bowl has already been cashed? Tell the next person in the rotation anyway. Give a simple warning like “Be careful, this might be cashed.” At least they will know what to expect.

Be Respectful and Considerate

When smoking pot with a group of people, there is a weed-smoking etiquette you have to follow. Unfortunately, they’re largely unspoken. So, if it’s your first time, you may get overwhelmed with these unwritten social rules. Ultimately, though, it just boils down to being civil and considerate. But if you can, try to look up these things online or ask your friends to give you a quick rundown.

III. After the Smoking Session

Hydrate and Have Some Light Snacks

Even if you’ve drunk or eaten something beforehand, you may still get cottonmouth and the munchies once the effects of cannabis take hold. So, make sure to hydrate and stuff yourself with the light, healthy snacks you’ve prepared earlier.

Eyedrops Are Your Best Friend

Having dry, bloodshot eyes is another common side effect of cannabis. While relatively harmless, it can feel a bit uncomfortable. Aside from drinking enough water, eye drops can also do wonders in easing dryness, redness, and irritation.

Stay Indoors

It might be tempting to venture outside and view the world through your marijuana-addled brain – but don’t. Remember, this is your first time. You still don’t know exactly how the plant will affect you. You might only end up hurting yourself – or accidentally run straight into a police officer.

smoking weed indoor
A girl smoking weed sitting down the floor

Don’t Drive

Don’t ever attempt to drive or operate any heavy machinery while stoned. You’ll just put yourself – and other people – in danger. Not to mention, driving under the influence of marijuana is also a crime in the United States.

Smoking Weed for the First Time FAQs

How Do You Smoke Weed Legally for the First Time?

Before anything else, check the legal status of weed in your area. As of 2020, the recreational use of marijuana is legal in 11 states across the United States. This includes:

  • Alaska
  • California
  • Colorado
  • District of Columbia
  • Illinois
  • Maine
  • Massachusetts
  • Michigan
  • Nevada
  • Oregon
  • Vermont
  • Washington

If you’re over 21 years of age and live in any of the above states, then you can smoke recreational cannabis legally. Just keep in mind that the local laws surrounding the purchase, possession, and use of the plant vary from state to state. Plus, they are ever-changing. So, make sure to keep yourself up-to-date on recent developments.

How Do you Smoke Weed Out of a Pipe for the First Time?

Smoking a bowl in a pipe is one of the most popular ways to enjoy cannabis. Start by grinding up the buds loosely. Use an herb grinder if you have one, but your bare hands will do. Pack a small pinch of nug into the end of the pipe – lightly at the bottom, and a bit denser at the top. Be careful not to overpack – that will make it much harder the smoke. Blaze it up and inhale through the other end of the pipe. Enjoy.

Cannabis Pipe
Beautiful pipe used for smoking cannabis

Note: If you plan on passing the pipe around your smoke circle, light up only a corner of the plant matter – not the whole thing. This way, the next couple of persons also get to sample the green hit (the first and best hit).

How Do You Smoke Weed from a Joint for the First Time?

Smoking a joint is a classic way of getting high. In fact, it’s considered a rite of passage for cannabis enthusiasts. Begin by placing the filter end into your mouth. Blaze up the tip of the joint, slowly rotating it between your fingers for an even burning. Wait until you’ve formed a cherry – or kept the end of the jay actively and continuously burning. Take a slow, measured drag. Enjoy.

How Long Does It Take for Weed to Get out of Your System?

THC – the chemical compound in weed that gets you high – can stay in your body for a few days to a week. Sometimes, it may take up to a few weeks. It is impossible to give a specific timeframe, as it depends on several factors, including:

  • Age
  • Gender
  • Metabolism
  • Body fat content
  • Frequency of weed intake
  • Amount of weed consumed
  • Potency of the strain

But generally, if you’re smoking pot for the first time, then THC may remain detectable in your system for about 3 days.

Make Your First Hit Memorable and Mind-Boggling

The idea of smoking weed for the first time is incredibly exciting. At the same time, it can also be a little scary, especially if you don’t have a single clue on what you’re supposed to do. So, if you haven’t done your homework, you’re probably just setting yourself up for disappointment. Fortunately, there’s no need to spend hours sifting through the endless resources online. With our comprehensive guidelines, your first ever puff will be as sweet as you imagined – whether you’re going solo or smoking with friends.