You will agree when I say this:
Packing hookah decides everything! Whether you are going to get thick smoke or not!
Keeping all technicalities aside, there are two main reasons for perfectly packing a hookah is crucial:
- Great packing brings excellent flavor and cloud
- Longevity of your session
So, it must be clear that packing a hookah is essential for a great hookah session.
But how can you do that? How can you pack your hookah for the first time perfectly?
We have got you covered.
Whether it is your first time or nth time, read along to master the art of packing a hookah bowl and get ready to be an expert “packer” among your friends!
Let’s get started:
What Do You Need To Prepare Before Packing A Hookah Perfectly?
Before we start with quick steps, you must prepare this hookah stuff beforehand to proceed with the steps fluently and without interruption.
And even if you are already prepared, check through to confirm if you have all the items and didn’t miss anything.
You will need the following:
- Hookah (obviously)
- Quality Tobacco
- Aluminum foil
- Toothpick or similar object (hole poker)
- Hookah Bowl
- Cube coconut charcoal
- 1000+ W heating plate
Once you are ready with these items and ensure you have not missed on your checklist, you can proceed with the step-by-step packing hookah guide.
Pack Hookah In 5 Easy And Quick Steps
Whether you are new to hookah or interested in knowing how to pack a shisha bowl perfectly, these five steps will make you an expert.
Follow the steps carefully so that you can get near-to-ideal packing.
Step 1: Mixing The Tobacco
The first step is to remove the tobacco from the packaging. When you take out the tobacco, it must be clumped up.
Therefore, grab a small dish and mix the tobacco with a fork. Mix the tobacco every time you prepare for hookah.
Mixing tobacco helps spread the juices of shisha tobacco and ensures even heat distribution when you smoke it. Also, it betters your smoke quality.
You must mix the tobacco until it is nice and fluffy. After mixing the tobacco, follow the next step.
Step 2: Packing Tobacco In Hookah Bowl
There are various types of hookah bowls. You can choose anyone according to your personal preference and experiment to find the perfect one for yourself.
Remember that each bowl smokes differently. Therefore, you must choose accordingly to your need and choice.
You can also read our guide on different techniques of hookah bowl packing densities.
For instance, semi-dense packing fits perfectly for dark-leaf hookah tobacco, while 75% dense goes best with specialty blonde-leaf tobacco or dark-leaf tobacco.
These packs smoke for longer, and if you pack it well, you can have a tasty session with all the tobacco.
However, the dense pack is best used when you want to have a more extended session. Also, other methods may have air gaps remaining, but in thick, and the packaging becomes slightly tighter.
Choosing the proper packing method according to the requirements of the hookah tobacco is also an essential step.
However, we will now focus on packing the tobacco in the hookah bowl.
Gently grab around 15-20 grams of the mixed tobacco and put that into the hookah bowl in a mountain formation.
Now, you can use the toothpick and slightly press down the tobacco to evenly distribute the “stuff.” So try not to spill the tobacco while getting all your leaves uniformly compressed.
Also, don’t pack your hookah too dense, as it might cause poor airflow leading to uneven tobacco cooking.
Further, ensure that tobacco distribution ends two millimeters below the bowl’s rim if you use the foil and 1 mm if you use a heat management device.
After leveling up the tobacco, follow the next step.
Step 3: Put Foil/Heat Management Device On Bowl
Before putting the foil or heat management device, ensure proper airflow in the hookah bowl using your toothpick. However, this step can depend on the type of bowl you use.
For instance, we are taking the example of a Turkish bowl consisting of five holes that go through the bowl for airflow.
You can use your toothpick to poke down directly in the center, so the toothpick should go through the center hole.
You can also make a light swirling motion that creates a direct hole in the center of the tobacco of the bowl. It will ensure proper airflow.
However, the above method applies to Turkish bowls and similar bowls.
Some bowls, like phunnel bowls, are open down the bowl’s stem; therefore, they can be treated differently.
Once you are done maintaining airflow, start putting the aluminum foil you brought or the heat management device on the hookah bowl.
However, if you use the heat management device, you can directly place it over tobacco and use it accordingly to enjoy the hookah.
But if you are using aluminum foil, follow the next step.
Step 4: Make Hookah Ready
Now you are almost prepared to enjoy the hookah.
If you are using foil, then you need to follow the step below:
For Foil: Use Toothpick And Poke Down Directly
Take your heavy-duty foil and pull it out about four to five inches, rip it off and ensure the whole sheet is intact.
While keeping the foil as clean and wrinkle-free as possible, fold the sheet in half, and you will have double-layered foil.
Put the foil over your bowl as tightly as possible without tearing any part, ensure to drum tight the foil.
Make sure there is no bend or rips, as it will create restrictions when you smoke; therefore, follow this step carefully.
And once you have done everything right, poke holes with the toothpick we used earlier, or you can use a new one.
Poke holes 2-4 mm apart in a circular pattern until you reach the center of the foil on the bowl.
After doing this step till here carefully, move to step 5.
For Heat Management Device: Put The Device Directly
Using a heat management device is very simple. First, you must carefully place the device on the top of the bowl in the center of the tobacco. Then follow the next step, i.e., step 5.
Step 5: Lit Up And Enjoy!
There are two types of hookah charcoal available in the market.
- Coconut coals and
- Quick lights
The natural coconut hookah coals are better than quick lights. The raw coconut coals add no taste and last longer when you light it up.
However, on the other hand, quick lights coals light quickly, as the name suggests.
Tip: Use a hot plate or single coil burner stove to light coconut coals. Do not use a flat-top stove, as it will leave burn marks.
If you are using foil, then using three-cube charcoal is better, and similarly, two-cube charcoal is better for a heat management device as the device can handle the heat better.
To light, the hookah coals, place them on the hot plate and turn on the heat to the highest setting.
Once you observe the charcoal is halfway lit (with an orange appearance), use your tongs and flip them over. And once it is fully lit, you can turn the burner off (to avoid overcooking).
Remember, overcooking reduces the coals’ lifespan.
Placing Light Up Charcoal: For Foil
As said earlier, place the charcoal in 3 different corners of the hookah. Ensure not to put them directly in the center or close to each other, as it can burn your bowl quickly.
Ideally, you should hang the coals off the bowl’s edge.
Now, wait 20 to 30 seconds to heat up before pulling on your hose.
After a minute or two, you can expect thick clouds and great flavors.
Placing Light Up Charcoal: For Heat Management Devices
Heat management devices are replacements for foil.
Place the two cubes of coals inside and put the cap on. Then you are good to go!
Now, enjoy the hookah!
Tips For Better Hookah Sessions
Here are some tips from hookah connoisseurs that will make you get the most out of your hookah session.
- Use high-quality tobacco and choose the flavor you will love the most.
- Choose the hookah bowl per your preference to get the most out of your session.
- When you enjoy the session, adjust your coals every 10 to 15 minutes or whenever the cloud output dies down.
- Remove any excess ash left behind to ensure a smooth and fluent burn of coal.
- You can also take the cap off the device if the bowl is too hot.
Now, as density and packing masters, you can finally light up and have bowl-packing shots!
FAQs On Packing Hookah
Packing a hookah has many ways, such as fluffy way, dense (best for specialty blonde leaf tobacco), semi-dense pack (best for dark leaf hookah tobacco), etc.
Depending upon the type and thickness of smoke you want, you can fill the hookah bowl accordingly.
For a proper normal pack, fluffy and semi-dense packing of a hookah is also a better way to start; depending upon your need and smoke type, you can also use the dense packing technique.
However, fluff packing packs may involve more heat management.
Hookah smoking won’t get you high. However, the tobacco in it can surely give you a buzz and make you feel lightheaded, relaxed, dizzy, or shaky.
In the hookah bowl, you cover it with aluminum foil and punch holes before starting to puff. For proper airflow, it is best to get plenty of spots in there.
Get The Best Cloud And Flavor!
Finally, you know about packing hookah perfectly with a step-by-step guide. Therefore, you are now perfectly prepared to get the best cloud and flavor from your hookah.
However, there are several ways to pack a hookah bowl, such as fluffy, semi-dense, and dense, which you can choose according to your smoke need.
To start best and to have a light cloud, fluffy packing of hookah is suggested as a great way. However, it is always in your hand to modify the hookah packing technique according to your way.