How to Smoke Shatter (Comprehensive Guide)


Cannabis concentrates have been quite a hot topic for a while now. Shatter, in particular, is what people are interested in and many are eager to learn how to smoke shatter properly.

If you’re one of them, you’ve come to the right place. Here I’ll cover what shatter is, how it’s made, and I will give you all the tips that you need to make your vaping experience more enjoyable than ever.

First things first – what is shatter?

Shatter is one of the most popular concentrate extracts on the market. It is the purest form of butane hash oil (BHO). Due to a high amount of THC, smoking shatter has always been a fairly controversial topic.

That amount may vary depending on the shatter, but you’ll hardly find concentrates with less than 50% of THC. In some cases, the amount can reach an astonishing 90%! The conclusion is fairly obvious here –  you really need to know what you are doing before you start smoking it.

Shatter is well-known for its sharp, distinct taste as well as long-lasting effects, which makes it a perfect concentrate for anyone eager to try some high-potency weed.

It is also known for its solid, glass-like structure that tends to break – hence its name.

How is shatter made?

Basically, shatter is made during a specific extraction process where butane (in a liquid form) is used to extract trichomes, tiny hair-like bumps rich in terpenes and cannabinoids, from cannabis plant buds.

Low-level heat is then used to remove any the butane and any residues before the final product is formed.

Though it’s a very basic procedure and has been used effectively for decades now, it’s not something you should try at home, because working with butane can be extremely risky, even life-threatening.

This procedure ensures that shatter always has the highest possible quality, but it doesn’t determine how clear it will be.

A few different factors play a role when it comes to shatter clarity and texture, but the general rule is –  the higher the quality of source materials, the better the shatter.

What methods can we use to smoke shatter?

Knowing a bit more about the structure of shatter, we can finally examine the key question – how to smoke shatter effectively?

You can use several different methods to enjoy your favorite cannabis concentrate – using a vape pen, water pipe, the hot knifing method, and even smoke it out of a joint. Each of these methods is very effective and can provide a top-notch high.

To help you understand what method works best for you, I will cover all of them in more detail.

How to smoke shatter with a vape pen?

The easiest (and most convenient) way to smoke your shatter is to use a vape pen. Although vape pens have been present on the market for a while, their popularity increased tremendously in recent years.

Their biggest advantage is simplicity. Even people who never smoked cannabis extracts in the past will easily grasp the basics here.

Put shatter into a bowl, press the “on” button, and you are ready to vape! You’ll need to hold the button for as long as the session lasts, but it’s not a major distraction, really.

Make sure you draw slowly and steadily as that’s the best way to ensure you are getting high-quality vapor.

Some vape pens allow you to adjust your ideal temperature manually. Lower temperatures will give you a better flavor while higher temperatures will provide a more powerful density.

Ideally, you should find a balance between the two to avoid throat irritation while still getting a strong and potent rip along the way.

How to smoke shatter with a water pipe?

Another common method that you can use to smoke shatter comes in the form of a water pipe or “dab rig”, if you prefer that term. It’s a method with the longest tradition and many people have documented its efficiency in providing great quality vapor.

First, fill the rig with water until you can see huge bubbles forming up. After that, put the nail into the water pipe and heat it further until it becomes red hot. At this point, you’re already done – all you need to do is put shatter on the nail and start vaping!

It takes about 40 seconds for a nail to cool down completely and the longer you wait, the better the flavor will be. Don’t wait too long, though, as you will waste your concentrates for nothing and you’ll get low-quality vapor.

How to smoke shatter by using a hot knifing method?

Hot knifing is another popular way to consume cannabis concentrates, but interestingly enough, it’s a somewhat controversial method. Namely, there’s concern that hot knifing may get users injured this way and that the whole procedure is too risky.

I would advice novice weed users to stay away from advanced smoking/vaping methods, unless they have an experienced person to guide them. In order to experience all the benefits of hot knifing, it is important to do everything properly.

If you do that, not only will you get an exceptional flavor, but you’ll also save a lot of time while preparing for the session.

The first thing you need to do is take two knives and place them onto a stovetop.

Heat them until they become red hot. You won’t have to wait too long; when you see red color, that’s a clear sign that the knives are ready.

Place the shatter between the knives and it will gradually fill up with smoke that you can inhale right there on the spot.

As you can see, it’s a very simple and cost-effective way to enjoy your shatter. As long as you do it properly, you won’t have any issues whatsoever.

How to smoke shatter out of a joint?

Lastly, I want to describe how you can smoke shatter out of a joint. This procedure is called twaxing, and it is pretty straightforward, but I will add some tips that will help you maximize the vapor quality.

First of all, make sure you push shatter into a joint very slowly as you don’t want to break the paper and waste your mixture.

You should add some oil to the joint beforehand to make this part easier. Now push the shatter down the joint but not to the very bottom. If you do that, an enormous amount of THC will end up in an open flame and the vapor will lose its potency.

From my experience, you can push the shatter up to the middle of the joint and that will be enough for an enjoyable experience. The joint consumption will be slower than usual, but it will give you more time to enjoy your vaping session.

This method is a bit trickier than the previous three. If you do it right, though, you’ll get quite an extraordinary flavor and the effects will last for a while.

A couple of additional tips

  • Make sure you always smoke shatter responsibly. The concentrate comes with a huge amount of THC, so you should ideally start with smaller pushes. That way, you can see how your body reacts and you can adjust your future sessions accordingly. Always listen to your body and never go overboard if you have side-effects. If you see that you can’t tolerate shatter at all, consider whether this is a good option for you.
  • Never use a car lighter to smoke your shatter. Although some sources suggest that this method is safe and effective, the truth is, it’s way too risky. Moreover, it pollutes the environment quite a bit, and this is something that we want to avoid at all costs.
  • You should always get your concentrates from a reputable source. Any low-quality shatter will take a serious toll on your health and it’s a risk not worth taking. In general, the more you pay, the better shatter you will get. Stay away from providers who offer “free weed” as nothing is really free in this world.

In conclusion

Now that you know how to smoke shatter, you can finally start vaping! Each of the four methods that I’ve described here is equally effective and you won’t make a mistake with any of them. As long as you follow the tips accordingly and do everything in moderation, you will undoubtedly have a vaping blast.

Now excuse me, I have some shatter to smoke as well.

About the author
Helena Miles

Experienced journalist with a decade-long experience of researching cannabis. She has been featured in many prominent outlets, such as The Growth Op, National Post and The Province.

Comments (5)

User Avatar
User Avatar
User Avatar
User Avatar
User Avatar
Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Green Camp Logo

Please confirm your age

Are you over 19 years of age (over 18 in Alberta and Quebec)?

By entering, you agree to Greencamp's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.