Aug 10 , 2021
Everyone makes a few mistakes while preparing their hookah for the first time. The experts or connoisseurs of today have perfected their hookah sessions through years of practice. Avoid the most common mistakes that can ruin your hookah experience.
- Using Too Many Charcoal Pieces atop the Bowl
Two standard pieces of charcoal are sufficient for a mini hookah. Three to four pieces are enough for a medium to large hookah. Too many red hot charcoal pieces will burn the shisha tobacco inside the bowl. Excess heat doesn’t naturally mean you will draw more smoke and larger clouds. To the contrary, the smoke will have a burnt texture and you may feel choked.
- Packing Too Much Shisha Tobacco in the Bowl
Similar to how excess heat doesn’t lead to larger clouds of smoke, packing too much shisha tobacco in the bowl will not guarantee a richer flavor. The proportion of the shisha tobacco and the heat it is subjected to is the most important factor to draw large clouds of flavorful smoke. Mastering this proportion takes practice. You have to indulge a few trials and errors through some sessions.
- Overheating Charcoal or the Heat Management Device
Overheating charcoal pieces before you place them atop the bowl or in a heat management device is not a wise tactic. You will simply waste the charcoal pieces as they shrink rapidly instead of actually using them to heat the shisha tobacco. Some users tend to preheat their heat management device. Doing so is not necessary. Also, it is an unsafe approach.
- Using Partially-Lit Charcoal Pieces
Partly or half-lit charcoal pieces are unsuitable. You must use bright red hot charcoal. If the pieces are poorly lit, then they will not generate sufficient heat to warm the shisha tobacco and produce adequate smoke. You will inhale more carbon dioxide upon drawing a few puffs. A good signal that your charcoal pieces are properly lit is the natural red color and burning texture. It is hard to miss.
- Excessive/Insufficient Water in the Base
Since hookah bases come in myriad shapes and capacities, you have to use a thumb rule of submerging around half an inch up to an inch at the most of the down-stem into the water. Any more than an inch of water is excessive and less than half an inch is insufficient.
- Adding Ice or Alcohol to the Water in the Base
Some people recommend adding ice to the water in the base for denser, milkier, and more flavorful smoke. Ice cools the water and it becomes a better absorbent. Cold or cool water will absorb more of the shisha flavors from the smoke. Adding alcohol to the water is absolutely unsafe. You will be inhaling unwarranted fumes that are definitely harmful for your health.
- Starting with Dark Leaf Shisha Tobacco
Some people find the blonde leaf tobaccos to be a tad lighter on their palate. They are indeed, especially when compared with dark leaf shisha tobacco. Dark leaf tobaccos have more nicotine. However, you should start off with blonde leaf tobacco to enjoy the flavors. Shisha or hookah is not about inhaling more nicotine. It is primarily about relishing the interesting flavors and relaxing for a while. Dark leaf shisha tobacco tends to land quite harshly on the palate and throat for those who don’t have a history of smoking.
- Buying an Enormous and Expensive Hookah
Beginners should never invest in a large and expensive hookah. An enormous hookah with a long stem does not guarantee large clouds of smoke. A massive clay bowl is not required to extract more flavors from any shisha tobacco. A small or midsize hookah that is crafted or manufactured well is more than sufficient. Every shisha enthusiast develops certain preferences. These personal quirks will influence subsequent purchases, be it a second hookah, the accessories, or the shisha tobacco flavors.
- Smoking Other Substances using the same Hookah
Do not use your hookah to smoke any substance other than shisha tobaccos. Every substance you try will leave a trace, not only of physical residue but also smell. You may actually ruin all your subsequent hookah sessions if you try another substance even once.
- Handling the Hookah by its Stem
Always hold the hookah by the base. Place a hand below the base and hold the entire hookah upright. You may use your second hand to grip the heart of the stem for perfect balance, but never pick up or move a hookah by holding any part of the pipe. If the rubber grommet gives in, then your base will drop down dead on the floor.