Gone are the days when people could light up some flower and call it a night. Where regular THC consumption is the “beer” of the weed world, dabbing BHO (butane hash oil) and its many forms is the weed world’s vodka. Purer, non-carcinogenic, and therapeutic, the shatters, waxes, and rosins are one of the most popular items at dispensaries today. But dabbing also has its flaws. Not only did a dab lab cause a dangerous explosion in Brooklyn last year, this method of consumption is also gear-heavy—you need a minimum of five gadgets to smoke it—and one trip to a head shop can feel like stocking an armory.
“It needs a bit of a marketing overhaul,” says Women Grow founder Jane West. “There’s a torch, shatter, nails, rigs. It sounds like S&M.” But, as Jane and her interviewer, Charlo Greene agree, dabbing is one of the biggest trends hitting female stoners in 2016.
Let actress and comedian Laurie Magers explain: “I like dabbing because you only have to do one hit to get very high. The potency is so much higher than any other form of smoking, and you feel the effects almost instantaneously.”
Magers has a great point. Dabs are four times as strong as a joint, and many companies use painstaking purification processes to ensure that pesticides and other unwanted solvents are removed, leaving a clean product that is safe to ingest. According to Bob Melamede, Ph.D., an associate professor of biology at the University of Colorado, “We’ve got indications that there are differences in the effects, pain relief properties, and potentially other important phenomena.”
There is also something ritualistic about the equipment involved, which appeals to many women. The commitment to setting up a rig, the intention-driven process, the luxury branding, and the stronger high make dabbing an act of social consumption, just as much as it is done in private.
And it’s not just young women. Take Instagram sensation @Dabbing_Granny. Her inspirational stories and dab informational videos have garnered her 189K followers.
The marijuana world is beginning to cash in on the female dabbing craze. Take Deviant Dabs, for instance. CEO and founder Megan Champion (below, center) and her team of women have zeroed in on making sustainable products geared toward women. Hailing from Mendocino County in Northern California, Champion grew up in the center of the cannabis community. As an adult, her entrepreneurial spirit led her to create Deviant Dabs as a way to create a vessel to give local farmers a legitimate pass forward into the common market.
Despite Champion’s farmgirl background, Deviant Dabs’ packaging is totally posh. The company’s golden waxes, rosins, and shatters come in these adorable compacts that make portable dabbing extremely easy.
“One of our goals is to let women know that it’s OK to have this other side that’s experimental,” says Michael Katz, CEO of the vaporizer company Evoxe Laboratories and Strategic Advisor to Deviant Dabs. “That’s the badass part of the feminine mystique.”
And truly, that’s what cannabis consumption is about in these pioneer days of legalization. The seductive packaging, 100 percent solvent-free extraction process, and the gorgeous flaxen color of Deviant’s waxes all have us convinced that women are the future of dabbing. And besides, self-care is something all women should make a priority, especially in a world where we might be interrupted by a man 51 times in a 90-minute conversation.