Bubbler vs Bong: How to choose the perfect option for you!

Bubbler vs Bong: How to choose the perfect option for you!
Bubbler vs Bong: How to choose the perfect option for you!

Water pipes are hands down one of the best ways to smoke weed. They are smoother than dry weed pipes so your hit will be cool, minimizing the throat burn. The water also acts as a natural filter for the smoke, giving you more potent and flavorful hits. Many people think bongs and water pipes are interchangeable terms, which is actually not the case. Bongs are a subset of water pipes. All bongs are water pipes but not all of these pipes are bongs. There are actually two major categories when it comes to water pipes: bubblers and bongs. The age-old debate has always been: bubbler vs bong - which is better?

Bubblers are most like dry herb pipes in appearance. They generally feature a built-in bowl, carb and mouthpiece. The body of the pipe will have a reservoir for water. You’ll see where these pieces get their name; when you smoke through a bubbler it will bubble. A bubbler will have a fixed downstem. This means they cannot be replaced or removed for cleaning. Bubblers are stealthier than bongs as they draw quietly and are usually smaller in size. Weed toked from a bubbler will be smooth and flavourful.

bong bubbler smoke weed highBong or Bubbler? Which do you prefer? Photo: @sasquatchconner

Bongs are more advanced water pipes. While they come in a wide array of shapes and sizes, they generally feature a vertical set up with a mouthpiece, water reservoir and removable bowl. The removable bowl will be attached to a downstem. Downstems can be stationary or removable. Bongs tend to be larger than bubblers, so they produce larger and stronger hits. They can also have intricate percolators and diffusers inside the water reservoir, which work like extra layers of filtration and make for smoother, more flavourful smoke.

If you’re ready to take your smoking sessions to the next level, you need a quality water pipe! There are plenty of really cool bubblers and bongs out there. Outlined below are some of the best types of bongs and bubblers for your buck.


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Staff Pick


grav beaker smoke bongSturdy glass and design make this Grav bong an easy pick. Photo: @Aqua Lab Technologies

When it comes to water pipes, nothing beats the simplicity and power of a classic, quality bong. This Beaker Bong by Grav Labs is a sturdy glass water pipe that’s perfect for daily toking. It’s made of a strong borosilicate glass and blown to 32mm thick. It features a beaker bottom, giving it a stable surface to rest on. The neck is the perfect size to wrap your hand around, giving you a solid grip. It features an ice pinch at the bottom of the neck so you can add a blast of cool with every hit. The pinch also doubles as an extra grip. The bong includes a 14mm male bowl and a matching female joint.
Reasons to love! 
  • Wide, sturdy base with beaker shape keeps this bong stable and steady.
  • Standard 14mm bowl and adapter make switching out bowls a breeze.
  • Great deal. $100 for a solid, quality bong is a steal! 


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Top Contenders

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bubbler high cannabis marleyBubbler or trendy desk accessory? Photo: @smokea

This glass bubbler is sleek and elegant, a perfect tabletop piece. If you’re unsure of how to use a bubbler, a piece like this is perfect. The clear view lets you see exactly how much water is going into the reservoir, and the removable wood parts make it easy to clean. It features a globe percolator for extra filtration, making for smooth, delicious hits. Plus this small bubbler can be used as a dry pipe too.
Reasons to love!
  • Tasteful and stylish piece you can proudly display.
  • Produces smoke that is cool and flavorful thanks to the globe percolator.
  • Unique hybrid design so you can toke dry or wet!


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joint bubbler toke high weed

Meet your new favorite buddy bubbler! Photo: @The Bong Shop

This little glass bubbler pipe is a perfect blunt buddy! It adds a level of filtration, making smoking your next joint or blunt cooler and tastier. Just fill the reservoir with water, put the joint in the stem and bubble away! You can also use it as a dry joint filter to control the temperature of your hits. Plus the price is extremely agreeable. No longer does it have to be bong vs joint. As far as water bubbler pipes go, this is a must-add for your collection.
Reasons to love!

  • Makes smoking joints and blunts smoother and more flavorful.
  • Is small and extremely portable.
  • Joint bubblers are just plain cool!


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bubbler blue hammer toke cannabisLet the smoke drift up through this beaut! Photo: @Daily High Club

A hammer bubbler is the traditional style that most people think of when they think of a glass bubbler pipe. It it shaped like a hammer, with a long stem mouthpiece, mallet-shaped reservoir and built-in bowl. This Blue Dream hammer bubbler from Daily High Club is a dream come true. It is made from sturdy glass with a wide base for durability and stability. The blue and yellow design does a dizzying dance like wispy smoke. As far as glass bubble pipes go, this classic is a real crowd favorite.
Reasons to love!
  • Traditional hammer bubblers are tried and true.
  • This piece packs a real punch, especially at this price point


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roll uh bowl high travel weedThis silicone, fold-able bowl will be the envy of all! Photo: @Rull Uh Bowl

If you’re looking for a portable bong to take your smoking experience anywhere you want, a Roll Uh Bowl can’t be beat! They are made from medical grade silicone that’s incredibly flexible and virtually indestructible. It has a metal bowl and downstem with a separate silicone band. To transport, simply store the bowl and downstem inside the bong. Then fold in half and use the band to strap it in place. It will easily fit in a pocket, purse or pack making this bong the ultimate adventure buddy!
Reasons to love!
  • Comes in a wide array of colors including orange, blue and glow in the dark.
  • Silicone and metal won’t break when dropped and are easy to clean.


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bong vape vaporisor high cannabis

Putting the "high" in high-tech! Photo: @Cloudius Inc.

The most advanced smoking water pipes on the market are vaporizer bongs. They produce vapor that gets filtered through a water chamber just like a bong. The Hydrology9 easily fits in your hand but is potent, producing vapor with intense bong flavor. It takes vaping and smoking to another realm! It has advanced features like LED indicator lights and a variable temperature setting. Vaporizer bongs are the most high-tech way to enjoy your weed.
Reasons to love!
  • The magnetic closure and mouthpiece create a leak-proof seal.
  • The changing lights and bubbling water have a cool lava lamp effect!
  • One of the smoothest and tastiest ways to enjoy cannabis.


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bubbler sherlock perc weed                                                 This bubbler will send you into detective mode! Photo: @Puff Pack

A Sherlock bubbler is another classic style water pipe. They look a lot like the pipes favored by the famous fictional detective, Sherlock Holmes. This particular glass pipe features a mini percolator inside the stem. The built-in bowl is generous, being both deep and wide. Choose from clear glass with blue or green accents.

Reasons to love!

  • Small and slender, making is discrete and portable.
  • Getting a pipe with a percolator at this price is a steal!


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bubbler stacked cannabis smokeLooking for a bubbler with some personality? We think we found it for you! Photo: @Cheech

This unique and badass piece complete with stacked skulls made out of green glass will turn heads (live ones, not skulls!). Unlike most bubblers, it features a 14mm joint and slide so you can remove the bowl and replace it with other bubbler bowls. It also has a showercap percolator and wide mouthpiece for a smooth and delicious experience every time.
Reasons to love!
  • Showercap percolator bubbles like a beast!
  • Rare skull bubbler design is a real treasure to add to your collection.
  • Removable bowl allows more session customization.

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bubbler headies high glassThis Headdies bubbler is one of the headdiest out there. Photo: @Headdies

This scientific bubbler by Headdies is one of the best weed bubbler pipes on the market. It is made of thick and sturdy glass that will stand up to heavy daily use. It can be used with oils or dry herbs. The inline bubbler creates a massive amount of bubbles with every puff.
Reasons to love!
  • Hybrid oil and herb smoking abilities give you more bang for your buck.
  • Hardy 65mm thick glass really resists breakage.
  • Creates bountiful bubbles with ease.

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bong merlin cannabis glassMerlin would be proud of this magical creation. Photo: @Everything for 420

What is a bong list like this without a crazy complicated contraption. The Merlin’s Bong is magical and mesmerizing. It has three different layers of diffusion between the honeycomb turbine, tree percolator and triple recycle. The bong has 8 chambers and 5 stems. The only way to understand an experience like this is to try it!
Reasons to love!
  • Three layers of aeration make for fine flavor.
  • Intense 19” of magical madness made of glass!


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In Conclusion

Bongs and bubblers both offer great ways to get more out of your weed smoking experience. Keep in mind, not all water pipes are created equal. Pieces can vary greatly when it comes to aspects like functionality, quality and price. You should pick a water pipe that speaks to you, meets your needs, and is in your budget. You should have fun and enjoy the experience of toking on your bubbler or bong!

Have a favorite bubbler or bong?
Let us know about it in the comments below!



Written by: Katy Stanton | Cover Photo by: MassRoots
Katy Stanton is an EMT and freelance writer in Springfield, Missouri. She and her husband are passionate about the the legalization of medical and recreational cannabis consumption across the country. Katy likes to spend her free time taking her two dogs on hikes and going to see her favorite local bands, Totally Useless and Action Kick Johnny, rock out.