A joint is a smokeable cannabis product that resembles a conical cigarette. Joints consist of weed, paper, and a filter, or “crutch.” Joint rolling paper can be made from rice, hemp, wood pulp, and more, including some designed to help boost the flavor profile of the weed. Crutches can be made from thick paper, cardstock, or index cards. Rolling papers are available in most convenience stores, smoke shops, and dispensaries, while crutches may be available at smoke shops, dispensaries, and online. 

What is a joint? Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps

Like a joint but not

  • Spliff: a marijuana joint that includes a mixture of tobacco and cannabis
  • Blunt: a cigar that has been hollowed out and filled with cannabis or a joint rolled with tobacco leaves
  • Pre-roll: a ready-to-smoke joint that was pre-rolled for you by a manufacturer or a dispensary  

Frequently asked questions

What's a joint?

A joint is a cannabis cigarette generally hand-rolled by the user but also available for purchase as a pre-roll. A joint rolled with cigar tobacco paper is a blunt and one with tobacco and weed is a spliff. Pre-rolls are pre-rolled joints available for purchase at retailers.  

What are joint filters called?

Joint filters are called crutches or tips. A crutch allows for better airflow through the joint, prevents excessive moisture from making the end wet, and reduces waste. They can be made from thick paper, cardstock, or index cards. Most smokers make their own but some retailers and dispensaries carry them and they are available online.  

Can I use paper for a joint filter?

Thick paper or cardboard makes for the best joint filters, commonly called crutches. Regular paper isn't heavy enough to give the benefits of a crutch and it could contain chemicals you don't want in your throat or lungs. Glass and wooden crutches are great alternatives to paper and can be found at tobacco shops, head shops, and some dispensaries. 

How do you roll a joint?

Rolling a joint can be an intricate art, but here are the five basic steps (and a video to help):

  1. Use a grinder to break down the weed and make it easy to pack.
  2. Create a crutch or filter.
  3. Place the crutch at one end of the rolling paper. 
  4. Fill and pack the paper with weed, using less at the crutch end, to form a cone shape.
  5. Press the weed firmly into the paper and roll it up, licking the seal to seal it.
rolling a joint Photo by: Gina Coleman/Weedmaps

Can you double-wrap joints?

Double-wrapping a joint can slow the burn and make the joint last a little longer. Rolling with an extra layer of paper can also help direct airflow properly and minimize an uneven burn. But it also means twice the rolling paper, which will inevitably lead to a harsher smoke with less weed and more burning paper in every puff.

How do you smoke a joint?

Smoking a joint has a certain etiquette and rhythm, especially if you're in a group setting. A joint smoking session starts when the roller puts joint to lips and flame to joint, takes two puffs, and then passes it to the person on the left. Sharing is part of cannabis culture and spreading the wealth comes naturally when you smoke a joint. 

How do you put out a joint?

There's not much to putting out a joint. All you need to do is press the burning end against the surface of an ashtray or other non-flammable surface. If you want to put out an unfinished joint to save it for later, apply minimal force to maintain the integrity of the joint. You can also let the cherry separate from the rest of the joint and fall into the ashtray. A straightened paper clip or other small, non-flammable item can be used to gently separate the cherry from the joint. 

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The information contained in this site is provided for informational purposes only, and should not be construed as medical or legal advice. This page was last updated on March 28, 2022.