The Bern Gallery

Hemp Wick 101: What, Why, How & Where to Buy

What is hemp for? These days, everything, even when it comes to lighting up your favorite packed pipe. How? Hemp wick, which is a natural alternative to fumbling with a lighter or matches. Here’s what you should know about how to use hemp wick.

What is hemp wick?

Hemp wick is a hemp twine coated in beeswax. Hemp twine is a common industrial product made of hemp fibers, but if you were to ignite it, the dry fibers would burn up quickly. Hemp wick is thinner and the coating of beeswax allows it to burn really slowly and really steadily, which can make it really useful when smoking with something like a pipe or a glass bong.

How to Make Hemp Wick

Hemp wick is made by taking the thinnest fibers of hemp, twisting them into a tight twine, and then coating the twine in beeswax for added rigidity and slow-burning qualities. The little bundles of wick can be several feet long, and you can find them in varying diameters. Most will be about one millimeter thick, but larger wicks are available that will create a thicker flame and slower burn. It is generally impractical to make it yourself, but we sell a variety of brands here at the Bern Gallery!

What is hemp wick used for?

People buy hemp wick for many reasons, but most commonly, it’s used as a natural alternative to using a lighter when smoking herb. Why is hemp wick better than a lighter? The wick burns cleaner, releases fewer chemicals, carbons, or emissions, and doesn’t involve striking flint to make a flame. Combusted butane is largely safe but can have an off putting flavor. Uncombusted butane is usually not an issue unless your lighter is damaged, but it is a neurotoxin that is best avoided. Therefore, the theory is hemp wick can give you:

  • A healthier way to light up free from butane, gas, or flint powder
  • A better taste because you’re not dealing with fumes and the lower temperature does not damage terpenes
  • A better experience because of retained flavor and cannabinoids

How to Use Hemp Wick

The coating on a hemp wick makes it easy to flex and maneuver into a manageable, easy-to-use shape. So, always start out by cutting off what you think you will use and wrapping it around something, even a lighter, to make it easier to hold. To use, simply ignite the end with a lighter and use the flame until you’re done. Keep an ashtray on hand to discard any ashes as the wick burns. Some artists make specialized wick jars with cork or metal lids that allow you to safely store your wick in a clean container while pulling out just the section you need to use!

Common Hemp Wick FAQs

What is the best hemp wick?

Look for high-quality hemp wick from trusted brands like Humbolt or Randy’s. Make sure the wick is natural, untreated hemp fibers and beeswax without accelerant additives or other materials for wick reinforcement. Raw and BeeLine are several other reliable makers of fine hemp wick!

Is hemp wick safe?

Hemp wick is considered safer to use than a lighter for frequent burning and lighting because it does not release the same levels of carbons and chemicals as a lighter. Butane torches, which are often preferred when using a pipe or bong, can potentially release butane gas that can have several detrimental effects with prolonged exposure, such as drowsiness and narcosis. The biggest risk with the wick is in how you handle it. Always be attentive to the open flame and make sure it is properly extinguished after use.

Where to Buy Hemp Wick

Hemp wick is available at some smoke shops, thanks in part to its rising popularity. However, the wick can be easier to find online than in-store. Side note, though, you do want to make sure you’re buying an authentic hemp wick that’s made with natural fibers and beeswax. Check out our hemp wick collections at Bern Gallery.