A detailed guide to rolling a joint

When you lastly choose to settle in and determine how to roll a joint, it will appear basic enough– till you attempt and understand it’s method more complex than you anticipated. Even when you are successful, you’ll find there’s a substantial distinction in between a joint that holds together and one that’s in fact great.

We’re not going to lie: it’s a long method in between weed covered in a notepad and your very first effectively rolled joint. Everybody’s got to begin someplace, and the ideal suggestions and techniques can assist you make joints with exactly ground marijuana within completely rolled rice paper. Consider this guide the very first stop on your journey to much better journeys. Simply make certain cannabis usage is legal where you are prior to you begin rolling.

Get the best executes

A great joint will smoke uniformly and enable sufficient air flow to bring every taste note into your mouth with each drag. Crafting one needs method and a little mastery, however you can make things much easier on your own by utilizing the right tools. As you’ll see, a lot about rolling joints is individual choice, however the following guidance will assist you understand where to begin.

Rolling paper

It’s simple to get overwhelmed by all the paper alternatives you’ll see online or at your regional smoke store, however there are some attributes you’ll wish to keep an eye out for.

A smoking cigarettes paper pack beside a sheet of cigarette smoking paper.
When it concerns rolling paper, the professionals concur: the thinner, the much better. Sandra Gutierrez

“The most crucial consider selecting a paper is getting the thinnest one, so you can taste the flower much better,” states Ta’Lor (who chooses to go just by her given name), a budtender at The Astor Club, a concealed marijuana smoke lounge in New York City.

[Related: Can you overdose on weed?]

Ta’Lor, who’s the weed equivalent of a sommelier, advises rice paper from popular brand names such as OCB and Vibes. Ali Jamalian, creator and owner of Sunset Connect, a marijuana item maker in California, states your option of paper will be individual choice, however that thin rice paper is a fantastic location to begin.

There’s size. Some brand names have a number of measurements to select from however if you wish to make a timeless cone-shaped joint, you’ll require king-size paper. The precise length will depend upon the brand name, however it’ll constantly be someplace around 10 centimeters, which is a little under 4 inches.


You can absolutely roll a joint without a suggestion, or pick your favorite from a big variety of products, from glass to cotton– it’s all individual choice. That stated, both Jamalian and Ta’Lor encourage utilizing a suggestion, and suggest novices adhere to the timeless cardboard ones. Glass is a bit too heavy and cotton needs a more powerful draw.

Hands holding a cardboard suggestion for smoking cigarettes.
Glass pointers are tough to roll with since they’re a bit heavy. Much better to adhere to the traditional cardboard ones. Sandra Gutierrez

Tips play numerous functions in cigarette smoking. The very first is to offer a barrier in between you and the marijuana, which will avoid weed from entering into your mouth. They will likewise conserve you from charring your lips and fingers as you complete your joint. A pointer will be essential while rolling a joint, as it will offer structure and shape.

You can purchase a bag of pre-rolled pointers or a brochure of perforated pointers you can roll yourself. Both provide about the very same cigarette smoking experience, and the one you select will boil down to individual choice. The primary distinction in between these 2 kinds of items is expense– a couple of cents per idea depending upon brand name and amount. Purchasing wholesale, obviously, is less expensive.

If you do not have a pointer, Jamalian states you can utilize whatever piece of soft cardboard you have at house as long as it’s not laminated or printed on. The budtenders at The Astor Club are even more mindful.

“Honestly, if you do not have an idea, do not utilize one, due to the fact that you do not always understand what paper you’re gon na be burning,” states Ta’ lor. Her colleague, Calia, who likewise chooses to pass her given name, concurs: “When high heat strikes something and after that enters your lungs, you’re smoking those particles which might impact you in the long run. We’re currently smoking cigarettes– you wish to keep your smoke as tidy as possible.”

Besides rolling paper and suggestions, the sources we spoke to suggested having a rolling tray and a great mill at hand. You can utilize nearly anything as a rolling tray (a plate, a cutting board, or a real tray), however ensure you clean it prior to every usage. Its primary function is to capture any weed that falls out while you roll– which will occur if you’re a newbie. Because you’ll either put that marijuana back into your joint or smoke it later on, you do not desire there to be any crumbs, dust, or gunk that might ultimately make it into your lungs or destroy the taste of great weed.

When it comes to a mill, Jamalian advises utilizing a three-chamber one constructed of metal rather of plastic, since small pieces of the latter can get into your marijuana.

“You need to certainly constantly take a look at your mill to see if all the little teeth are still there, that absolutely nothing is broken,” he includes.

Calia worries that contrary to common belief, mills are definitely recyclable, and if you believe it’s not shredding along with it utilized to, it most likely simply requires a great cleansing. She recommends separating the mill into as lots of pieces as possible and letting them take in alcohol for a day. To clean up tough areas or challenging nooks and crannies, like the rim, she advises utilizing a paper towel with alcohol.

Get some great weed

The very best carries out in the market will do definitely nothing to enhance your cigarette smoking experience if you do not roll quality weed. Which type you get, once again, refers individual choice, however you’ll require to ensure it’s fresh and hasn’t been relaxing in your huge bro’s drawer for a year.

[Related: The tasty chemicals flavoring the edible cannabis boom]

Old weed will collapse to dust when you grind it, which, according to Ta’Lor, makes it more difficult to take into a joint. “When you roll with a truly excellent, truly fresh bud that sticks and forms itself, it’s method much easier,” she states.

To evaluate your marijuana, Ta’Lor states you need to squeeze the bud in between your thumb and forefinger. If it bounces and there’s little to no fallout, you ought to be excellent to go.

How to roll a joint

Now that you’re completely prepared to roll a joint, let’s go through the real rolling procedure.


  • Time: 1 to 2 minutes, depending upon your mastery
  • Product expense: around $18 for carries out
  • Trouble: simple


  • 1 gram of marijuana
  • 1 king-size rolling paper
  • 1 suggestion


  • Mill
  • Rolling tray
  • (Optional) little tube (or slim pencil)


1. (Optional) Roll your pointerIf you’re utilizing a pre-made suggestion, you can avoid this action. Otherwise, start by ripping an idea from your pamphlet. If you selected ideas with perforations, you’ll have the ability to make folds where the dotted lines are and roll the remainder of the pointer around that shape.

Series of 3 images revealing hands rolling a smoking cigarettes suggestion out of cardboard.
Even if you do not have perforated cigarette smoking ideas, you can quickly roll your own. Sandra Gutierrez

If your idea does not have any guides, you’ll require to choose the shape you wish to begin with– the classics are an “S” or a “W.” For either one, you’ll require to begin by making a small fold of around 1/8 of an inch (around 3 millimeters) on among the brief ends of the paper and after that make an equivalent fold in the opposite instructions: it needs to seem like you’re folding a really small accordion.

Make one more fold (3 in overall) for an “S” shape, and 2 more (4 in overall) for a “W” shape. Jamalian states the distinction in between them is just how much they secure the marijuana from falling out and into your mouth while you smoke. An “S” shape must suffice, however if you’re handling finer weed (read: not that fresh) you’re much better off making a “W.” Once that’s done, roll the remainder of the cardboard around it.

Do not fret if it recuperates into a looser roll the minute you release– you’ll have the ability to change it later on if you require to.

  • Pro idea: Jamalian states he does not like the idea of burning weed (a “hot cherry,” as he puts it) half an inch from his face. If you do not like this either, attempt doing what he does: utilize longer ideas. You can purchase them as broad or king-size– they’re around an inch long– or you can make them yourself with the right paper.

2. De-stem your marijuana and grind it. A king-size paper ought to be huge enough to roll a gram of weed, which is roughly 2 to 3 buds, depending upon the size. Beginning with that quantity is an excellent standard, however do not be amazed if you can’t fit all of it in there initially– more on that later on.

Take a close take a look at your buds and choose any stems you may discover. These will not just destroy your joint by potentially piercing the paper or disrupting an otherwise even burn, Ta’Lor states, however may likewise harm your mill in the long run. If it’s plastic, a stem may break the little teeth within, and if it’s metal, it may blunt them quicker.

All of our specialists concur that the marijuana you desire in a joint needs to be on the finer side however not completely crushed. The latter is most likely to take place if you’re grinding old weed. If you’re anxious about overgrinding, look at it as you go.

3. Tidy your marijuana. Discard the weed onto your rolling tray (or whatever you’re utilizing as one) and gently roll it in between your fingers. You’ll be feeling it out for any particles that are not expected to be there: stems you may have missed out on in the previous action, plastic teeth or bits that may have broken off your mill, seeds, and seed shells.

“When seeds pop– oh, it’s the worst odor on the planet. You do not desire that in your joint,” states Calia.

Hand sorting through oregano leaves.
Oregano, you state? No, naturally it’s not. Sandra Gutierrez

4. Establish your paper. When you pull your rolling paper out of its product packaging, you’ll discover it has a crease. This is where you’ll position the marijuana. Position the paper, ensuring the glue line is on the within the folded paper and facing you the whole time. Manage the paper with both hands by putting the pointers of your forefinger on the within the crease and utilizing your middle fingers and thumbs on the external sides of the paper. Your thumbs and forefinger must hold the paper tight, while your middle fingers serve as assistances to keep the glue side of the paper upright.

Prior to you put any weed on the paper, get a feel for stress– the paper needs to be tight, however not a lot that it seems like it’s going to rip. If it does (and the budtenders at The Astor Club state this will occur a number of times) do not get prevented– simply get another paper and attempt once again till you develop some muscle memory.

Hands holding cigarette smoking paper prepared to roll
Getting the stress right is essential to roll as tight as possible. Sandra Gutierrez
  • Pro suggestion: Take the folded paper in between your thumbs and forefinger and roll it up and down to curl it along the crease, leaving a margin of around 1/8 of an inch on each side. This will provide the paper more of a “U” shape that may assist you roll the joint later on. If the paper keeps slipping and you require more grip, gently damp the ideas of your forefinger and thumb. If you lose any trace of the initial crease, discover it once again by rolling the paper so that the front side facing you is just somewhat listed below the glue line on the rear end.

5. Include your pointer. With the paper in between your fingers as discussed in the previous action, pick a side to put your suggestion– this will be the bottom of the joint. A great deal of individuals select their dominant hand side, Jamalian states, however you must do whatever feels comfy. Even though he is right-handed, he likes to put the pointer on the left side of his joints.

Put the idea on the paper so both edges are lined up, and utilize the index, middle finger, and thumb on one hand to keep it in location.

Hand holding a cigarette smoking paper with a cardboard suggestion on the left side.
Placing the paper into the rolled cardboard will support the pointer and keep it in location. Sandra Gutierrez
  • Pro suggestion: If you have a tough time keeping the suggestion in location, somewhat raise the loose end of your suggestion and slide a half an inch of the paper into the roll. Complete by a little rolling the suggestion up. This will avoid the pointer from walking around and will supply structure, which will later on make the rolling much easier. If you’re rolling a straight joint, however, this strategy will leave you with less area to put your marijuana in and will make it a bit harder to load it firmly towards the pointer. If you wish to develop a cone shape, place the rolling paper into the idea at a small angle.

6. Include the marijuana. With your fingers holding the pointer in location inside the rolling paper, utilize your other hand to put the weed in. From time to time, stop to protect it in location and pinch the joint to offer it form. Utilizing fresh marijuana will make this a lot much easier, as it’ll stay with itself and rapidly take whatever shape you provide it.

Make certain you eliminate any air pockets, specifically around where the marijuana and the pointer satisfy. Any void will produce an unequal burn, developing what is understood in the weed world as a canoe: when one side of the paper burns prior to the other due to the fact that there’s absolutely nothing there to stop the heat from taking in the paper. This not just wastes marijuana, however will Destroy your experience as the smoke from the burning paper will change the taste of your weed.

Hand holding an incomplete joint while the other hand includes oregano into it.
If rolling oregano taught us anything, it was that, certainly, utilizing non-sticky weed to roll a joint is extremely difficult. Sandra Gutierrez

Take your time forming your joint. The supreme objective is to load it tight and equally, which will come more quickly with practice, Calia states. If you observe marijuana falling onto your tray from the top of the joint, Jamalian recommends you leave it there for the time being. “Beginners must understand it’s completely okay to have half of it fall out while you’re finding out. Ultimately, it’ll stop occurring,” he states.

7. Roll your joint. Now is the minute you’ve been waiting on: the rolling. Utilizing your middle fingers as assistance, utilize your indexes and thumbs to roll the front side of the paper down so it can just cover the weed and pointer.

Rearrange your forefinger to cover the within the joint with the front side of the paper and somewhat roll it up upward. This is without a doubt the hardest part: Your objective is to firmly tuck the front side of the paper in between the marijuana and the back of the paper as securely as possible, so you can continue rolling up. While you attempt this, you’ll most likely lose a lot of the stress you’ve been constructing up to this point, so do not be scared to go back and forth up until you get the tucking. Feel in one’s bones that it’s okay if you can’t make it as tight as you desire: this is all part of the procedure and it’ll end up being easier with practice.

Series of 3 pictures demonstrating how to roll a joint.
Pinch the paper close, cover the joint’s innards, and embed the front side of the paper. Easy peasy …? Sandra Gutierrez

As soon as the front of the paper is tucked behind the marijuana as firmly as you can, launch your forefinger and continue rolling your joint approximately the glue line. End up by licking the line and protecting the joint by rolling it till completion.

8. Load your joint. It’s possible that your joint is still not almost as tight as you ‘d like it to be, however that’s okay. It’s part of knowing, and 2nd, you can still make it a bit tighter if you desire.

Hand holding a joint while the other packs more weed into it.
As you end up being more of a professional, you will not require to pack your joint excessive. In the meantime, there’s no embarassment in some post-roll stuffing. Sandra Gutierrez

Get your joint by its suggestion and light tap it versus a flat surface area. Gravity will press the marijuana further down. Here you can likewise get a few of that fallout from Step 6 and put it back into the joint. Utilize your fingers to fit as much of it as you can through the opening at the top, and after that utilize a toothpick, a slim pencil, or any sort of thin tube to carefully press it down. You’ll wish to be fragile and work gradually, as any aggressive relocation can discard all the effort you’ve made up until now to roll a quality joint.

9. End up by twisting the top. When you seem like you can not put more marijuana into your joint and it’s as tight as it’ll ever be, it’s time to close up store and take pleasure in. Utilize your forefinger and thumb to twist the paper at the top of your joint. The more you twist, the further down you’ll press the weed, so take care not to do it excessive– you may rip the paper.

Hand holding a joint while the other twists the suggestion.
Pinch and roll. That’s the only strategy you require. Sandra Gutierrez

If you had a great deal of paper left over and now you have a long tail at the top of your joint, you can suffice prior to you illuminate.

[Related: Is growing weed sustainable? The answer is complicated.]

Everybody we talked to stressed that a great deal of individual choice enters into rolling a joint. If you later on discover that something in this guide does not use to you, go on and alter it up. They likewise highlighted the value of being client and practicing. At the end of the day, there’s a reason that there are numerous tutorials on how to roll a joint: as easy as it looks, it’s certainly challenging. Do it consistently and attempt brand-new executes now and then. It’ll function as a valuable knowing experience, however likewise a procedure where you discover what you actually like in the end.

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