Help! “Can You Recommend A Sophisticated Bong?”

Do you have a recommendation for a grown-up bong? Husband and I have had to jettison them in recent moves and I want to get him a nice one for his birthday now that we will be stationary for the next few years. Other than just going to a head shop and buying the blue swirly one. I always get the blue swirly one.

Hey, there’s nothing wrong with the blue swirly one! Of course, I entirely get what you mean—you’re ready to move beyond the dorm room-style bongs that look more at home surrounded by tapestries and Dark Side Of The Moon posters than atop your West Elm transitioning-into-adulthood coffee table.

But! Your question wasn’t about blue swirly bong acceptance, it was about finding a more sophisticated alternative, so onwards we go. The three major rules of thumb to follow when selecting a grown-up looking bong are:

  1. Choose glass over acrylic
  2. Opt for bongs that are on the shorter side (below 12″ sound good to you? Yeah, sounds good to me too.)
  3. Avoid bongs with logos or slogans

The first rule comes because glass bongs smoke better than acrylic. And then, there’s the thing about acrylic bongs just looking tickie-tackier than glass. Which leads us well into our next two points about bong purchasing for grown-ups: Sure, pot leaf-motif or rasta-colored bubblers are fun! But they do lend a certain je ne sais quoi to the experience except that I fully know quoi the problem is: They’re a lil’ juvenile. A sophisticated bong should be something that you could set atop a mantle and pass off as a decorative piece of artistry; that Graffix logo will entirely ruin the effect, so avoid it. Entirely related to the vibe a bubbler can give off is its size—nothing says “frat-boy mentality” quite like a three-foot bong, ya know?

With those guidelines in hand, head on down to your local headshop and see what your options are. Talk to the salesperson manning the counter! Tell him or her about your quest to procure a fancy bong and see what suggestions you get. Do, however, be sure to have a price point in mind and to tell the clerk helping you what your budget is—some of the nicer bongs can be very expensive, and it would be a bummer to fall in love with something that’s so far out of your price range that you have to leave it behind.

In the spirit of helpfulness, and also because my job is awesome, I noodled around the old internet in search of a few sophisticated bong options. Here’s what I coughed up. (Fair warning: you will get used to the puns.)

8″ Deep Black Percolator | Smoke Day, $29.99

The Little Black Dress of bongs, with a perfect price point to boot.

black percolator bong

Bamboo Bong | Grass City, $22.50

If your tastes run a little earthier, or you’re looking for something to coordinate with your hula girl door beads, this bamboo bong is a very attractive option.

bamboo bong

Mad Science Water Bong | Smoke Nut, $77.52

Got a science-y bent? This beaker-style bong is the perfect thing for the lab rat in you.

beaker bong science

Blue Fairy 5mm Glass Bong | Water Bongs Glass Pipes, $119.90

Here’s a grown-up and gorgeous turn on the blue swirly bong of your youth!

blue fairy bong


This is for the big spender, fer sure, but dang look at that thing! A gold-plated bong that you can smoke while lying down?!?! <WOLF WHISTLE>

Expensive Fancy Euro Bong

But I want to come back to  the blue swirly one for just a second, to address a thing that quite desperately needs addressing: Every time I write about anything having to do with pot-smoking, there’s a chorus of people loudly proclaiming that one delivery method is clearly superior to all others, followed by a litany of reasons why, say, smoking a joint is a waste or enjoying a bong hit is for kids.

This is rubbish and malarkey! First of all, who are these people to tell anyone how they should smoke their weed? Would you like it if someone told you that your preferred apparatus was somehow lacking? No, no you would not. So don’t do it to other people, yeah?

Second of all, dude. Go smoke a bowl (or a joint, or a pipe, or a 300 euro bong, if you will) and chill, man. How you gonna go around getting judgey over pot? This new strain of weed snobbery has got to goooooooo. I smoke pot to unwind and get a little goofy, I don’t need your free-range, artisanal judgment up in my face.

The bigger point to be made is that there are many ways to smoke some pot, and all of them have their pros and cons; they also tend to lend themselves to different highs, and it’s fine for a person to prefer one to another. So, look, if you like the blue swirly one, get the blue swirly one and don’t worry what other people think about it. Those other people want to harsh your mellow and you should tell them, “No! No, I will not let you harsh my mellow, you ridiculous mellow-harshing harsher!”

But, like, say it way chiller than that.

[Lead image via Flickr]