How to Choose the Right Rolling Paper for You
Figuring out how to pick the right rolling papers can be hard. There are tons of different rolling papers on the market, and learning everything you need to know to make an informed decision is a challenge. In this guide, we’ll introduce you to some of the most important questions you should ask yourself as you pick out a rolling paper brand that you’ll want to stick with for years to come.
How Do You Want to Smoke?
They say, “go big or go home,” but a one-size-fits-all attitude isn’t right for everybody. Figuring out which smoking style you love the most is one of the most important steps you’ll take as you find the right papers.
For instance, if you just like to smoke occasionally, you might be fine with a pack of normal-sized papers. If you routinely make yourself the life of the party, however, you’ll want to invest in some bold papers that you can use to make huge smokes that you can share with friends and strangers alike.
Materials Are Everything
In the long history of rolling papers, these smoking accessories have been made from tons of different materials. While you’re probably happy that you aren’t smoking your combustible of choice with newspaper clippings, you might not know all that much about the different materials that are used to make rolling papers.
1. Wood Pulp
Paper made from wood pulp has long been one of the most popular materials for making rolling papers. In the early days of rolling papers, paper mills started making tiny booklets of rolling papers to satisfy the smoking habits of European peasants. These days, many rolling paper companies still use wood pulp due to this material’s beneficial attributes.
As rolling papers became more popular throughout the 19th century, many manufacturers started using rice to make their papers. Rice is plentiful, cheap, and it makes thin, crispy papers that burn effectively. This plant material is still widely used to make rolling papers to this day, but many paper manufacturers have switched to different substances.
Flax is becoming increasingly popular as a rolling paper material. While it isn’t very common to see flax used as the only material in a rolling paper, plenty of manufacturers mix pulp from this grass-like plant with wood pulp or hemp to make sturdy, smooth-burning papers.
Hemp is one of the safest and most pleasant materials used in rolling papers. This natural substance has hundreds of uses, and it’s one of the best paper materials on the market. Using rolling papers that incorporate hemp pulp helps promote the hemp economy, which makes it easier for hemp producers to make clothing, fuel, food, and tons of other useful consumer goods.
5. Other Materials
As we mentioned, some misguided souls used to use newspaper clippings during the Renaissance period to smoke discarded cigar butts they found on the side of the road. That practice was disgusting then, and it’s disgusting now; whatever else you do, we strongly recommend that you avoid using sticky notes, printer paper, newspaper, or any other types of papers that aren’t explicitly made for smoking to roll up your smokes.
In the olden days, some manufacturers also used a plant-based substance called esparto to make rolling papers. However, esparto is harsh, and it’s more carcinogenic than other rolling paper materials. We suggest you stick with the other materials we’ve mentioned no matter which rolling paper brand you try.
Express Your Style with Your Smokes
What do you want your rolling papers to say about you? Ever since Edward Bernays popularized individualized clothing styles in the early 20th century, it’s been a fact that what you wear and what you own says a great deal about who you are and what you value.
If you pick out drab, ordinary papers, the people around you will conclude that you’re boring. There’s nothing wrong with being boring, but if you go far enough, your peers might misunderstand the situation and think that you lack the courage to try new and bold things.
With your clothes as well as your smokes, it’s best to express yourself to the fullest of your capabilities. Whether you decide that bright red rolling papers are right for you or you prefer stars and stripes, show your individuality clearly with rolling papers that express a side of you that people don’t usually see. If you want to truly stand out and evoke a life of luxury at the same time, however, our $100 rolling papers are the only way to roll.
Compare the Reputations of Different Brands
Ask around: Which rolling paper brands do your friends think are the best or the coolest? It’s hard for a brand to succeed if it doesn’t have a good reputation, so most popular rolling paper brands will earn the recommendation of at least one of your friends.
After you’ve asked a dozen people or so, however, a trend will have emerged. While plenty of brands will only be mentioned a couple of times during your inquiry, your friends will have recommended one or two brands a number of different times. Write down the names of those brands, and head to the internet to learn more.
As you look up each brand on Google or your search engine of choice, there are a couple of places that you should look first. At the top of the list, you should look at the brand’s Google reviews. These reviews will show up if a business has registered itself on Google, and it will tell you more about a prospective company’s reputation with customers.
Next, see if the brand has any products on Amazon. Reviews on Amazon aren’t everything; plenty of consumers leave bad reviews for silly reasons, and lots of other consumers give products five stars before they’ve tried them long enough to know anything about their actual quality. If a product has at least 50 ratings, however, it’s easy to get an overall idea of how popular it is and whether it is high-quality.
Even if a company’s product reviews are good, you won’t want to work with them if they treat their employees unfairly. Check the company’s reviews on Glassdoor to learn more about how its employees feel about their work. The testimony of one or two disgruntled employees doesn’t mean much, but if you sense a pattern of worker exploitation or bad practices, you should work with a different company.
Lastly, make sure that the company doesn’t have a bad reputation with the Better Business Bureau (BBB). For bonus points, check consumer reports for any extra information on the rolling paper company you’re investigating.
Check the Quality
Choosing to smoke the plant matter of your choice is already a bold move, but you don’t want to take things too far by inhaling substances that have no business inside your mouth, throat, or lungs. Unfortunately, plenty of rolling paper manufacturers either don’t have the know-how or integrity to eliminate harmful substances from their products, and this lack of oversight can have deadly effects on consumers.
First, check to see whether the company you like tests its papers for quality and safety. If a company does take this crucial step, it won’t be shy about it. Companies that are proud of their testing procedures make sure to post testing information proudly where everyone can see it.
Next, determine which materials the company uses to make its rolling papers. Materials like rice, wood pulp, flax, and hemp are all acceptable, and always prefer companies that use high-quality materials like hemp and flax. If a company makes its papers entirely from wood pulp or uses any amount of esparto, however, you might want to work with a different brand.
Lastly, ensure that the company uses safe rolling paper additives. For instance, all-natural gum arabic is the only material that a company should use for the sticky substance on rolling papers that holds a finished smoke together; any other gummy sealing materials might contain toxic substances.
Colorants are another factor that you should examine closely. Some companies might use artificial dyes in their rolling papers, but these substances could cause cancer and other serious diseases. If your rolling paper of choice is dyed in any area, make sure that it only contains plant-based dyes.
Pay Attention to Price
No matter how special a rolling paper may be, it shouldn’t be that expensive. Rolling papers are cheap and easy to manufacture, and if a particular rolling paper costs more than another, there had better be a good reason for this price discrepancy.
If a rolling paper contains great materials or it has novelty value, for instance, it would make sense for this paper to be more expensive than a plain paper with sub-par materials. Purchasing a few rolling papers here and there won’t harm your bottom line all that much. However, just make sure that the asking price of a rolling paper is within reason before you take the plunge and buy in bulk.
Avoid Counterfeits at All Costs
If you have a favorite rolling paper brand, it’s natural to try to find that rolling paper for a cheaper price. Unless your favorite manufacturer is having a sale, however, it isn’t likely that you’ll find legitimate pack of papers for cheaper than you’re used to paying.
Instead, it’s most likely that the cheaper papers you’re considering buying are counterfeits. These types of fake papers may contain sub-par materials and harmful additives that could compromise your health. Never fall for the lure of cheaper prices and pick fake papers that could hurt you.