Inhaling hot butane from lighters is a health risk when smokers use it to light their joints. Butane also affects the flavour of fine cannabis and burns at a higher temperature to bring out the full potency which destroys much of the aromatic terpenes. Wood or paper matches are not much different. There’s the risk of inhaling burned sulphur.
This is one reason why cigar lovers are known to use strips of wood to light their Cubans. This is also the reason why hemp wick is a popular lighting choice for many cannabis connoisseurs.
Hemp is coated with beeswax to form a slow burning thread that offers a safer, better, and environmentally alternative to butane lighters and matchsticks. The fine film of beeswax is wrapped around a lighter or spool to slow down the burning. It is cheaper than butane lighters, burns at a lower temperature than butane and does not ruin the taste of the terpenes.
A roll of hemp wick lasts for a long time even if you are a regular smoker.
Wicks help you control the flame with more precision. You can inhale more cannabinoids and terpenes since the lower temperature doesn’t burn them out.
Hemp wick, however, requires skill to use. It requires hand-eye coordination and the beeswax can drip if it’s not high quality. Glass ones with a cork look elegant but are more expensive.
You may find hemp wicks in online dispensaries and stores such as Amazon.
Premium brands are Twisted Bee, Eric X Light, Humboldt, Bee Line and Bee Wick.
Vegan wicks are also available for those who prefer to avoid beeswax.
Hemp wick dispensers are inexpensive, easy to use and available in a variety of colours, shapes and sizes. A tiny spool costs about a dollar or two while bigger rolls cost more but are available in different diameters too. Thicker the wick, the slower it is to burn but thicker wicks are more commonly used in candles.