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a top-down view of cannabis concentrate in a jar

How do you dab? We asked 6 buds how to set up, stock up, + spark up

LanternJuly 5, 2022

From wax to shatter, rosin to crumble, high-potency cannabis concentrates are increasingly popular. The wide world of dabbing continues to get wider thanks to innovations in products + gear — making dabbing feel intimidating or confusing for newcomers.

Whether you're looking to get started or up your dabbing game, keep reading: we asked our buds at Curaleaf, Doobie, Insa, + South Shore Buds, along with Lantern-concentrates enthusiasts, to share their expert advice + recommendations. 

Let's hash it out... 

Set up: Blowtorches and beyond

The dabbing method spectrum is vast, from traditional rigs to electronic (“E-rigs") to newer, more beginner-friendly dab gear. Our dispensary partners + Lantern experts shared their favorite ways to dab:

Traditional rigs

  • Bri, South Shore Buds: Real rig with a banger + a torch. I love my E-rig but it does not have the same efficiency per usage as a traditional banger setup.

  • Dave, Curaleaf: You can't beat a cold start with a torch + a nice clean rig with room temp water IMO. It gives you the maximum flavor + terpene efficacy when you keep temps low versus a super hight heat dab. Plus, the ritual of watching the concentrate actually activate is hypnotizing.


  • Breanna, Doobie: For beginners, I highly recommend starting with an E-rig, which electronically heats the cannabis concentrates with just the click of a button. Using an E-rig allows users to select + maintain a specific temperature leading to more consistent dabs. Other methods often require torches + additional accessories that can be utilized for more experienced dabbers.

And more

  • Alex, Lantern: I have a Pax 3 + really enjoy using their concentrate insert for my bubble hash from growing. It's a really clean + flavorful way to enjoy – it also packs a nice uplifting punch.

  • Rowan, Insa: I prefer to use a dab straw; I think that it's a much more user-friendly way of getting into dabbing + it's a lot less intimidating for folks new to concentrates – rather than handling all of the moving parts of a dab rig. I also love the portability of dab straws, as well as the easier storage.

Tip: Using a straw? Make sure your concentrate is in a glass or silicone container so you don't melt plastic when the hot tip touches your product.

Stock up: Your dabbing shopping list

Traditional rigs

To spark up with a dab rig, you'll use a torch to heat a nail connected to a water pipe, place your small amount of concentrate on the heated nail, + inhale the resulting vapor through an attached mouthpiece. 

Getting started with a traditional setup can be intimidating. Here's our very own Miranda to the rescue with recs for a first-timer's shopping list:

  • Dab rig 
  • Quartz nail (the type you'll need will depend on your rig, they come in male or female + in different angles, 90 degrees or 45 degrees)
  • Carb cap to cover the top + direct airflow so you get an even dispersal of oil over hot quartz
  • Dab tool to scoop your concentrate
  • Butane torch (like a creme brulee torch)
  • Optional: silicone mat to keep your surfaces clean to set your sticky tools on + a jar of Q Tips to keep your rig clean (a clean rig is a good rig)

E-rigs and vape pens

After their first-generation product release in 2018, Puffco’s innovative E-rigs paved a new path for veteran dabbers tired of the blowtorch, as well as curious consumers intimidated by blowtorches. E-rigs are widely available today + streamline the traditional rig process, using electricity for heat instead of a torch, which offers tighter, more user-friendly temperature control so you can fine-tune your dab style to your liking.

Another more accessible way to dab is using a tool you may already have: your vape pen. Accessories like wax atomizers transform your 510-thread batteries into a portable, discreet dab tool. Or you can skip the mods + purchase a pen that’s specifically made for dabbing.


Last but not least, you'll need the goods themselves. Concentrates come in all sorts of sticky, golden forms. What makes each type different? Their methods of extraction, which boil down to pressure, solvent, temperature, + strain affecting makeup + consistency.

  • Bri, South Shore Buds: Blue River Terps, Natures Heritage. I'll try any live or solventless concentrate once.

  • Dave, Curaleaf: Grassroots. All-day. Every day.

  • Breanna, Doobie: When it comes to using an E-rig, I love using a more waxy + solid concentrate. Some of my favorite brands are X-Trates, Commonwealth Alternative Care (CAC), + Trulieve. Cresco's concentrates are also wonderfully terpy + super clean.

  • Rowan, Insa: I absolutely love the Insa brand wax + batter; the taste is always spot on + the concentrates are always super terp-y. I also really love the Rythm concentrates, especially their Brownie Scout strain if you're a fan of really nice indicas like I am!!

Spark up: Hacks + tips to up your game

Make the most of your concentrates

  • Bri, South Shore Buds: If you're not using a bubble or carb cap, you're wasting product. Use the lowest setting always for an E-rig. Big dabs are wasteful, you can always take another one.

  • Breanna, Doobie: Store your concentrates in the refrigerator – it keeps them fresher longer! Don't be afraid to use concentrates in conjunction with flower to bump up potency!

Take your time to dial in your dab

  • Miranda, Lantern: Start slow + low, the size of a cooked quinoa bead or a grain of rice if you're feeling frisky! If you're using a cold start or Puffco, sometimes you can get a couple of hits out of one little dab. If you can't finish, you can always come back to it.

  • Rowan, Insa: Go slow + take your time figuring out what you like! There are so many different ways to consume concentrates + so many different varieties. It can be a little overwhelming at first; you might find that you enjoy small devices like dab straws, or prefer water-based smoking with a rig, or even that you prefer concentrates in your pre-rolls or blunts + like smoking it with flower rather than on its own. The possibilities are endless, so don't rush!!

Get started or level up

Dab your way with product and gear from Lantern – delivered.

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