There really isn’t a wrong way to spark up a joint, but there are always ways that are better than others. If you’re smoking socially, you don’t really want to be the guy that rolls really well, but doesn’t light the joint for a nice, slow burn. Learning how to light a joint properly is probably one of the first lessons in pot smoking 101. Don’t feel discouraged, though. Joints are tricky. But once you know how to do it, it’s like riding a bike, you never forget. Lighting joints, much like rolling them, comes with plenty of options. It really is an art to get that nice, slow burn with a great cherry right off the bat. You worked so hard to roll it, you deserve the perfect smoke.

Lighting a Joint

Patience is a virtue. If you rush it, it’s either going to be a quick burn, or the joint won’t hit properly, or in extreme cases, only half the joint gets lit. The first thing you want to do is take your lighter and hold the flame over the tip of the joint, while slowly twisting it in your hands so that you heat up the joint through and through. This is the process of creating your cherry. Make sure you’re keeping the flames even and gently toasting the tip, that way when you inhale, the cherry will be perfect.

While you’re getting that cherry made, go ahead and drag it gently. Inhale little puffs, and use your lighter to make sure the cherry is full and of decent size. Again, you don’t want to be smoking a half-lit joint, also known as canoeing. After you puff a bit, the joint should stay lit. Make sure you’re not inhaling while you’re trying to light it. Unlike cigars or cigarettes, cannabis is going to have a cerebral effect on you, and too much at a time can be overwhelming.

If you’re also into rolling fancy joints and blunts, it’s especially important that your cherry is even, or the joint you worked so hard to roll won’t burn properly.


Don’t forget your heat source. Too many times have I rolled a perfect joint and not had the lighter to smoke it with. It’s really just a devastating feeling overall. Always keep one with you. Aside from smoking cannabis, you never know what else you might need one for. Better safe than sorry!

Smoke that Joint!

After all that time you spent rolling the joint, we hope now that you know how to light it properly, you’ll enjoy it even more. Just take care of yourself. You know your limits, consume responsibly.