Bong or bubbler, which one?

We all have that friend who will say bongs are better than bubblers because of this brand new piece everyone is smoking on, but, whatever. Learn which is the best for you, bong bubblers or vape pen bubblers.

Water Bong
High End Waxxin Bong

The most common thing water bongs and bubblers have in common is the percolating sounds they make. Both bong bubblers and vape pen bubblers provide fantastic benefits when smoking. Depending on your situation picking one over another may provide a better experience, but how do you choose?

Let's start with the shared traits between bongs and bubblers.

  • Filtering the smoke through water before inhalation; which makes for a cold, smoother hit.
  • Avoid the additional burning and inhaling of any rolling papers / extra tobacco leaf layers.
  • Gorgeous designs, some made by talented local & international artists. (if you are into that kind of stuff)
  • Mostly made of glass, or some in plastic (which is recently growing in popularity)

Although the shapes and sizes of bongs and bubblers may seem identical, there are more than a few aspects that are different.

What is the difference between a bong and bubbler?

The most significant difference between a bubbler and bong is the down stem. Yes, they both have a stem protruding to the water, but a bong has a slider to remove the bowl. A bubbler, on the other hand, has a bowl connected to the water pipe itself.

Fundamental differences Bubblers & Bongs.

  • Typically small to medium in size, but that is not a prerequisite
  • Often a Closed Mouth Piece – Not an entirely shut-off end, but a pinky sized hole.
  • Bowl right to water – The herb bowl connects directly to the down stem in the water.
  • Require more frequent cleaning – Because of the above, you can imagine how quickly bubblers get dirty.
  • Small smoke chamber between bowl and mouthpiece
  • Great for relaxed sessions with cigar-like hits
  • Often used with fewer people (many newbies spill the water emptying the ash)
  • Size has no limits with bongs, from tiny to MASSIVE
  • Open Mouth Piece – Often on bongs, there will even be a pinch used as an ice catcher for cooling each hit
  • Additional percolators and filters in the pipe.
  • Down stems – The down stem on a bong allows the use of a bowl or even ash catcher to keep your piece clean.
  • Cleaning can be more accessible with Bongs because they are larger than bubblers. (we recommend regular washing, regardless of size)
  • Larger smoke chamber from herb bowl to water then mouthpiece.
  • Great for quick hits with high potency and immediate release.
  • Quickly satisfy large and smaller groups alike.

Finding the right smoking apparatus for you might require buying a cheap bubbler now to see which you prefer. If you have always used a bong to smoke, then how will you know if a bubbler is better? (The equal opposite is also true).

Here at we aim to provide the best head shop supplies on the market. If we are missing any products you would like to see please let us know, requests are welcome too at Browse our selection of bongs for sale to see which ones fit you best!

Always remember, all products sold on this website are intended for use with legal tobacco products only.