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Hookah for Beginners: What You Need to Know About Personal Hookahs


It's estimated that over two million Americans smoke hookah every year. Smoking hookah is a practice that's been around for hundreds of years and originated in India. It's since become a worldwide phenomenon and is extremely popular among adults of all ages and backgrounds.

Personal hookahs are also becoming more popular. Especially in the days of social distancing when going to hookah bars isn't as easy as it used to be. If you're interested in owning your own personal hookah, then continue reading to learn everything you need to know.

The Anatomy of the Hookah

A hookah is made up of several main components. The bowl is where you place the shisha. The bowl can be found at the top of the hookah and it's usually made up of ceramic, porcelain, stainless steel, clay, or Pyrex.

Shisha is the substance that you smoke and it's usually made from tobacco that's been mixed with molasses sugar or fruit. Popular flavors for shisha include strawberry, cola, apple, and mint. Charcoal, coal, or wood are usually burned in the shisha pipe in order to heat the tobacco and make smoke.

The tray is placed right under the hookah and is used to catch any loose ash that falls from the burning coals or tobacco.

The centerpiece is the part that holds and connects all of the components together. This can be viewed as the heart of the hookah. The centerpiece is usually constructed out of a metal, such as aluminum, stainless steel, copper, or brass.

The hose is the tube that the filtered smoke travels through. It does this just before it's inhaled by the user. Silicone or plastic hoses are best.

The hose can also be made from materials that are washable or non-washable.

The vase is the water chamber. This part holds the water that filters the smoke from the tobacco before it goes into the hose. The water is also used to cool the smoke and make sure that it doesn't get too hot, too quickly.

The vase is usually made out of acrylic or glass.


The hookah heat management device is a very helpful accessory that can replace the foil on top of the bowl. This is used to control the amount of heat that's transferred from the coal to the tobacco.

Using this device can help you better manage how your device smokes and it also makes it a lot easier to contain the ash and charcoal throughout your smoking session.

Using a mouth tip can let you share your hookah with others without worrying about spreading germs. This is especially useful during the days of social distancing.

How the Hookah Works

Although it's fairly simple to smoke hookah, it can still be overwhelming for people who are new to the practice. It's not always easy when you're first figuring out how to smoke hookah on your own.

Preparing your hookah for smoking requires technique and takes practice. Essentially, your shisha is going to be heated and burned in the bowl of the water pipe.

The smoke that comes from the burning tobacco moves through the water chamber. There, the smoke will be filtered and cooled by the water and then moved along the rubber tube to the mouthpiece. The smoker then inhales the smoke via the mouthpiece.

How to Set Up Your Hookah

The first thing you're going to want to do is clean the hookah. After it's cleaned, pour water into the base. The tip of the hookah's stem should be around one inch below the surface of the water.

Then, assemble the rest of the hookah. To do this, connect the shaft to the base. Also, fit the hoses into the holes.

Sprinkle small amounts of shisha into the bowl. Make sure that you don't clog any holes with it. The bowl should be around three-fourths full of shisha.

Press down lightly to make an even layer of the tobacco substance.

Next, you want to cover your bowl with a foil or screen. Your hookah might even come with a screen that's supposed to go over the bowl. You can also use tin foil to reduce the heat and have more control over the hookah.

Stretch the tin foil over the bowl and make sure that it's tight over the edges. Then, make sure that it's smooth and flat.

Follow this with poking holes into the foil. The larger the holes, the more hot air you'll have flowing through the tobacco. If you're using a toothpick to poke holes, then make around fifteen holes.

If you're using a pen, then five holes should be enough.

Now, light your coals. Always use self-lighting, smokeless coals.

Once your coals are hot, smoke gently. Inhale air through the hose with full breaths. But do this at a slow pace. Breathing in too harshly will overheat the tobacco. Take a minute or two between each inhale.

The Importance of Knowing About Personal Hookahs

Smoking hookah can be a rewarding experience. Whether you're doing it by yourself or bonding with friends. It's great as a social practice or for just taking time for some self-reflection.

And by knowing all about personal hookahs, you can more quickly master the practice and teach others how to do it as well. Remember, although you might not get it right the first time, you should get the hang of it after a few tries.

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