marijuana vaporizer smell

Do Weed Vape Pens Smell? [The TRUTH!]

As cannabis legislation is beginning to change across the states, and potentially across Europe too, more and more people are gaining access to both medical and recreational marijuana. Despite popular campaigns and the plant now being legal for recreational use in eight states plus the District of Columbia (and legal strictly for medicinal use in twenty more), there is still a number of taboos surrounding weed.

Due to the obvious restrictions on smoking cannabis, those who do enjoy lighting up (whether it’s medically or recreationally) can often feel judged, embarrassed or ashamed of their habit. We all know that weed has a pretty distinct smell, and non-smokers often turn their nose up at it when they catch a whiff of the aroma.

Nowadays, weed smokers are turning to vape pens instead of rolling up a joint when they fancy a smoke. But before making the transition, many people are left with the lingering question: do vape pens have the same smell? Or better yet, can you use a weed vape pen right out in public without anybody being the wiser?

This article is here to debunk any myths you might have about vape pens, so read on if you want to find out more.

How do vape pens work?

Vaporizers have several components that allow users to “light up” a little more subtly. First off, there is the tank, where cannabis oil or the herb itself is placed. This is linked to the atomizer, which is the heating mechanism in the device. As new models are designed, new jargon is entering the market (such as cartomizers or clearomizers, among others), but in reality, they are all types of an atomizer.

Then, there is the battery, which provides the power to the pen. Vaporizers usually use rechargeable lithium ion batteries, which have a high energy density and are very unlikely to explode if improperly charged.

There are two types of heating methods when it comes to vape pens. Convection heating involves passing hot air around the herb or cannabis oil, heating it up without making direct contact. In modern vape pens, this is the most common heating method. Conduction, on the other hand, involves placing the herb in direct contact with the heating mechanism. This method is more common in desktop vaporizers than vape pens, but there are pens available that use this technique.

Most vape pens nowadays use marijuana concentrates, or hash oil, in their chambers. This yellow liquid is extracted from the cannabis plant, but something to note about it is that it is much stronger than the flowers themselves. Marijuana flowers usually contain up to around 20% THC, but hash oil can contain up to 90%, or even more. It is vital to be aware of this the first time you take a hit using hash oil – know your limits, and take it slowly until you get used to vaping concentrate.

Joints vs. Vape pens

Whether you use more traditional smoking methods or switch to a vape pen to get your hit of cannabinoids is really up to you. There are quite a few differences between the two, however, which is why it’s important to make an informed decision. The main difference, quite obviously, is that vape pens are powered by USB ports, while cannabis cigarettes obvious require a lighter.

Vape pens can use either cannabis oil cartridges or ground up cannabis flower inside a heating chamber to deliver a hit. The crucial difference is that neither of these options involve combustion – a fact that makes vaping much safer since there are (usually) no carcinogenic chemicals released . This, of course, doesn’t mean that excessive weed consumption via vaping is overly “healthy,” but it is certainly a safer option than rolling a blunt.

What’s more, vaping can be a more convenient choice. With numerous vape pens already on the market and more in design, these are a portable, handy option.

Traditional cigarettes and joints are probably going to seem like the ‘cooler’ option for years to come, but the vape pen craze is really catching on. And the reason for this trend may lie in the answer to one simple question… do vape pens smell with the same sort of obvious marijuana “pungency?”

What does weed smell like?

In reality, the precise scent of weed differs depending on the specific strain, since each and every strain has different terpenes (this refers to the compounds in the essential oils of the plant).

For example, some marijuana strains have high quantities of limonene, which is also found in fruits like lemons and limes; therefore, strains high in this terpene have a more citrusy smell.

However, this is what the herb smells like when its pure. The scent of weed when it’s smoked is quite different, as combustion adds a more acrid, pungent tang to the aroma.

Weed smell can last up to a few hours, depending on the environment in which you light up. There are a few ways to mask this scent , including using air freshener or scented candles, but they do not always amount to success. Besides, the smell can linger on clothing or in hair, meaning that masking the scent is not always enough to cover up your habit.

So, what can you actually do about the odor?

Do vape pens smell?

Vape pens definitely do not hold the same level of notoriety as joints or even bongs. They resemble e-cigarettes in appearance, and these devices definitely don’t carry as much of a stigma as smoking marijuana through any means (strange, when you consider the infamous addictive quality of nicotine).

Furthermore, many vape pen users will testify to the fact that vape pens do not have the same aroma that comes with burning your herb. This is due to the lack of combustion involved in using a vaporizer, which means that the pure cannabis smell does not get mixed with the nasty tang of smoke.

No need to panic, though – even though the scent is purer, it tends to dissipate a lot quicker. A lack of smoke particles means that it won’t cling to your clothes and hair, so no need to worry about getting caught.

That said, it is important to know that the strength of the scent will actually depend on the pen itself. Some vaporizers release a stronger smell than others, but these tend to be older models that use conduction heating methods. Since the herb is in direct contact with the heating surface, it releases a much stronger odor than convection vaporizers.

If you’re looking for a super discreet way to vape weed without anyone noticing, you’ll have to invest in a more advanced (and expensive) convection-style device. Let’s check out some real reviews from weed vapers that can help you mask the scent of smoking pot…

Vape pen reviews: Which ones hide the smell?

As discussed above, there are a range of vape pens available on the market. The sheer variety of vaporizers makes it difficult to say for sure whether vape pens emit the same smell as lighting a joint, but by looking at some specific reviews, you should get some idea about which pens are best for hiding the scent of weed.


Created by the vaping company PAX Vapor, the PAX 3 is one of the latest additions to their range. This is a dual-use vaporizer that can use both dry herb and extract. PAX Vapor provides two options for buying this model. Buying the device only means that you can gear up to vape with 8-10 sessions per charge, 60+ temperature settings, 22 second heat-up, vibration notifications, and Bluetooth that connects to the PAX Mobile App; this will set you back $199.

There is also the option to purchase the complete kit, which, for the more expensive price of $249, comes with a 10-year warranty, a concentrate insert, a half pack oven lid, a multi tool, 3 screens and a gloss finish on your device.

The PAX 3 is available in four different colors, if you prefer to vape in style, coming in black, teal, silver and rose gold. The half-oven chamber on this device allows you to get the same quality vaping experience with less herb. Furthermore, it has lip-sensing technology – you don’t need to fiddle around with buttons just to take a hit.

This model is known for being one of the best dry herb vapes around. Through the smartphone app, you can choose between different vaping modes to suit your style or mood:

  • Standard mode: just as it says on the box, a pretty balanced mode that works for first-timers
  • Boost mode: the temperature will increase faster and cool down more slowly; ideal for hurried vaping sessions
  • Flavor mode: the faster temperature increase and faster cool down increases flavor preservation
  • Stealth mode: low-key vapers can choose this option to create less vapor and odor by speeding up the cool-down time and dimming the LED lights
  • Efficiency mode: this mode preserves battery life by increasing oven temperature by 1 degree during your session.

But what about its drawbacks? The PAX 3, although compatible with THC concentrates, doesn’t perform as well with this method. And, even though the battery can last you quite a few sessions, it takes 2.5 hours to recharge from zero if you use a USB charger.

Does it smell? Since users of this device often prefer to use dry herb, the PAX 3 does, unfortunately, create an odor. However, the rapid heat up time “cooks” the herb less than some other pens, meaning it might not be quite as strong; plus, the rapid cool-down time means that it will stop smelling very quickly after it switches off. Moreover, there is always the option to use stealth mode in order to lessen the scent.

DaVinci IQ

One of the more expensive vape options – with a retail price of $274.99 – the DaVinci IQ , lives up to its price as one of the best dry herb vaporizers on the market. Made with a brushed aluminum exterior and featuring a ceramic chamber, DaVinci spared no expense when it came to the construction of this superb device. It contains a powerful battery, with 3500 mAh.

What’s more, DaVinci incorporated a flavor chamber using zirconia Pearl that enhances the flavor quality of your herb. The zirconia Pearl works to enhance heat distribution and ensure that it remains even throughout your session.

There are two heating modes:

  • Precision mode: select your exact preferred temperature setting.
  • Smart Path Mode: the device gradually increases temperature during your session.

The flavor chamber in this pen means that the herb will be super potent when you take a drag. Even if you don’t use the flavor chamber, the DaVinci IQ promises great flavor and plenty of clouds, along with a very smooth, light vape.

Does it smell? Since it is a dry herb vaporizer, the IQ tends to produce quite a smell. Furthermore, the sheer amount of clouds produced by this vape means that the odor can travel further and be detected more easily. In short: it packs quite a punch when it comes to scent.

Cloud Pen 3.0

Once again compatible with smoking herb, the Cloud Pen 3.0 is a discreet pen that also allows you to use wax to vaporize. Shaped almost like an ordinary pen, this is a great option for discreet vapers, and retails at just $79.99. The designers really took customer feedback into account when creating this pen, crafting a vaporizer with a longer pull duration of 25 seconds and a longer battery life.

This pen comes in a range of colors, including black, dark blue, gray, green, light blue and red. The ceramic coil vaporizes the wax slowly, giving the user smooth puffs that are full of flavor. It is great for newbie vapers, since it has a standard 650 mAh battery rather than a more powerful one. Plus, there is a convenient micro-USB port for charging.

Does it smell? Generally, since it is a vaporizer that uses wax, the Cloud Pen 3.0 does not emit nearly as strong a smell as using dry herb. However, as some reviews note, the coil inside tends to get very hot and can produce a burnt smell. That said, it tends to deliver a flavorful hit in general, without the too-strong smell. Since this is also compatible with smoking dry herb, be aware that using it in this mode will produce a stronger scent.

Firefly 2

Another expensive option, the Firefly 2 comes in at a whopping price of $329.95. It is an extremely stylish vaporizer, with the range available in Zebra Wood, Oak, Black, Blue, White and Jet Black.

It’s the perfect choice for vaping on the go, heating up in just 3 seconds. The Firefly 2 has a multitude of 5-star reviews, with many applauding its excellent vapor quality and taste. It is compatible with both flower and concentrates, using convection heating to cook your cannabis at precise temperatures.

Holding around 3-4 hits in the chamber, the 7.4V battery is both rechargeable and replaceable and lasts more than enough time. What’s more: it charges in a mere 45 minutes with a Quickcharge AC adapter. The Firefly 2 comes with 2 of these batteries, meaning you can change them out on the go (if you go through the effort of carrying around a spare).

Does it smell? As we have learned so far, vaporizers that use convection heating and those that use extract instead of herb will always produce less smell. The Firefly 2 meets both of these requirements, meaning it can deliver great flavor (thanks to the even heating of convection), without the addition of a pungent odor. Usually, if you clean it after roughly every 10 hits (which is extremely easy thanks to the strong magnetic top), you’ll find that the smell is kept to an absolute minimum.

And the winner is…?

Basically, any vaporizer that uses extract instead of dry herb, and any vaporizer that uses convection rather than conduction heating, will win on the “does-it-smell-bad” front. Another factor to consider when searching for a vape pen that produces minimal odor is the heating time – the quicker it takes to heat up, the less the herb is cooked, and thus the less it smells.

The Firefly 2 clearly wins on all these fronts: it uses convection heating, is compatible with marijuana extract, and it is ready to go in just three seconds. If you’re looking for a low key vape pen that you can use without paranoia, then this is the one for you.

Having said that, it is an expensive choice. If you don’t have that much cash lying around to splurge on a vape pen, try opting for something like the Cloud Pen 3.0, which uses extract instead of herb but has a much lower retail price.

If, after all this, you have decided that smell doesn’t matter to you, dry herb pens like the PAX 3 or the DaVinci IQ are certain to deliver strong, flavorful hits, even if they do give off a fair amount of weed aroma.

So… What’s the Conclusion, Do Vape Pens Smell?

Some weed smokers are quite concerned about the smell that lighting up produces. Unfortunately, there’s no real way around this when smoking joints. Vaping is a viable option for those looking to reduce the smell, although there is no way to get rid of it completely.

There are two types of heating methods in vaporizers: convection and conduction. Convection heaters will produce less smell than their conduction counterparts, making them a good place to start when trying to reduce the scent produced. Secondly, try using vaporizers that utilize marijuana extract or wax rather than dry herb or flower, because the latter involves a stronger aroma produced during the heating process. Finally, any vaporizer with a lower heating time will generally produce less odor.

Ultimately, when choosing a vaporizer, you need to consider all the factors and select one that’s best for you. If you want some more indication about what vape pens are on the market, check out our list of the best 5 wax vape pens available. Happy shopping!

Recommended Portable Vapes – Our Best Picks

Thinking of getting a vape pen and worried about the smell? Find out which vapes smell and which don't in this in-depth review.

Does Vaping Weed Smell?

Cannabis, most commonly known as Marijuana, is a plant that promotes a sense of euphoria and relaxation when burned or vaped. This powerful drug is believed to treat a number of conditions (e.g. Alzheimer’s Disease) by producing mind-altering hormones that calm down a person.

Unfortunately, marijuana, for a long time, has been looked down upon and has suffered a negative stigma in popular culture. It has had a reputation for being an inferior treatment method even while other substances that promote adverse effects are widely used. To be honest, I also judged it the same way when I was a kid because of how people thought about it. Needless to say I’ve learned from my past stupidity.

Cannabis Regulation

More and more people are gaining access to medical and recreational marijuana as cannabis regulation is slowly starting to gain momentum across the United States. Marijuana has already been legalized in eight states in the US for recreational use. Other countries all over the world are now starting to adopt new laws and push for the legalization of this controversial treatment alternative.

There are still a lot of taboos surrounding cannabis despite the recent pro-legalization momentum. Stereotypes from our less-educated past take a long time to die off.

The Scent of Weed

Because of the restriction and negative stigma surrounding cannabis, people who do a regular scent check often times feel embarrassed about it. Sometimes people make me feel like smoking a harmless joint is something to be ashamed of. One friend even told me that the smell of marijuana makes her “want to punch the wall”. Really?

Due to the stigma, people who smoke weed often turn to vape pens instead of the traditional way of rolling up a joint whenever they want to feel the effects of pot. Vaping weed is much more discreet when compared to smoking it. I can confirm that from personal experience. Before making the drastic change, people oftentimes ask: do vape pens smell? Does vaping weed give off the same smell as rolled joints?

Do Vape Pens Really Smell?

There is a lot of bullshit on the internet about vaping weed. Many have claimed to offer odorless dry herb vaporizers. Don’t fall for it.

Of course vape pens smell! I think it’s safe to assume that any type of weed will produce an aroma. The severity of the odor depends on what type of cannabis you are going to vaporize. The strength of the vapor and the strain and purity of your herb is a big factor as well.

A responsible vaper should know the difference between smoking weed and vaping weed, especially its odor comparison. I have tried both ways and I can say that there really is a huge amount of difference between the scent it produces.

The Scent of Vaping Weed VS Smoking It

Smoking Weed

When you ignite plant material, you combust it to create smoke. This is how smoking marijuana works. You burn the bud which will then produce fumes. These fumes are what you inhale during smoking.

You actually immediately lose 50% of the cannabis plant when you combust it. What’s worse is that it contains a lot of solid particles of what you just burnt. Smoke isn’t actually a gas. It is merely a product of burning and combustion. So the next time someone asks you why smoking weed smells awful? The answer is that what you inhale contains millions of burnt particles that bring the odor.

This is also the reason why it leaves its characteristic smell to the smoker or anything it can cling to. If you smoke all day from the time you get out of bed to the time you get home from work, you become a walking representation of the amount of weed you inhale.

Vaping Weed

Vaping weed on the other hand, by its definition, works by producing vapor. Vaporizers are devices that can adjust to a temperature so low it can heat a cannabis plant and melt its oils without actually burning the plant itself.

This means that the particles produced by vaping weed are much purer than smoking them. Vaporizers still smell, of course. However, there are no smoke fragments present in vape pens, which means you don’t have to worry about the scent mixed with smoke clinging to your clothes.

Vapor is a real gas, unlike what smoking produces. The awful scent brought by the burnt molecules in smoking weed is also absent in this process. This is due to the absence of combustion in the vaping system. As a matter of fact, many vape users (including myself) can testify to the fact that vaping cannabis does not have the same aroma that is developed by igniting your herb.

How strong is the scent produced by vaping weed?

With everything I’ve mentioned so far, you should know by now that there are a lot of reasons why vaping weed is far superior to smoking it. The reduced aroma is one of the most important in this long string of factors. Combustion doesn’t happen in the vaping system. The only scent you will be smelling upon vaping is the vapor and its flavor.

As we’ve mentioned, vaping produces purer molecules than smoking. Now you might think a purer substance is even more detectable. However, a purer one doesn’t equate to a stronger one.

The vapor emitted from what you inhale diffuses very quickly. There’s really not even enough time for the vapor to stick to your clothes.

It is important to consider that there is still a concomitant scent. It basically depends on what vape pen you use. So there are exemptions.

Some devices, especially the older models, produce a much stronger scent than the newer ones. This happens by putting the herb directly in contact with a heated surface. The odor produced is much stronger the longer the heating element is activated. This aroma lingers for a while but also discharges very fast, so there is no need to worry that your wardrobe could be used against you.

Does Vaping Weed Get You Caught?

Fortunately for vapers, vaping weed has been observed to be less detectable than the traditional way of smoking. This is because unlike the latter, the former doesn’t involve combustion, which is responsible for producing that burnt aroma you smell whenever you pass by smokers. And no matter how much we deny it, the smell of flavored vape is so good you just want the aroma to stay in your nose all day. This scent, together with its accompanying massive, puffy white “smoke” has been common anywhere.

We can’t deny that vaping is more acceptable than smoking. When people see a person lighting up a cigarette, they are automatically disapproved and frowned upon. Vaping, on the other hand, gets a free pass (well, sometimes). People who are worried about acquiring second-hand smoke tend to like vapor that smells like bubblegum or strawberry than an overcooked barbecue.

With this, it has become almost normal to see people with e-cigarettes inside parties or bars, on the streets, and anywhere a smoker won’t be able to indulge in his or her habit.

Tobacco users who use vapes started to look at this as an advantage. And not long after, they started to feel the same freedom they felt before several states started to make laws that prohibit people from smoking in public. As a matter of fact, 37 percent of smokers switch to vaping every week.

And of course, people who smoke weed saw this as the perfect instrument to mask their herb habit. I know I did!

We’ve known so far that vaping produces an odor that is less pungent than smoking, which burns the joint itself (thus, the smell). But now, people who smoke weed can just easily blend in with smokers and get away with it quickly if the police show up.

How Do I Beat The Weed Smell Dilemma?

As I’ve said earlier, there are two methods of inhaling weed. One involves combustion, and one is done through vapes. While the latter is considered to be producing the most tolerable smell, it still smells! No smoking or vaping device is absolutely smell-proof. This is a factor to consider especially when people around you are not used to it.

Older models are the ones more likely to emit a noticeable odor. However, just because your vape is an obsolete device does not mean it automatically exudes that extreme smell. Strong odors only come out when your mod is not used properly.

If you really are concerned about getting rid of the strong odor, there are ways to make this happen. By experience, here are some pro tips I can recommend that can help you decrease chances of an unwanted smell.

  • Clean your vape! This is a no brainer. Of course the dirtier your vaporizer, the more chances it won’t function properly. Always keep your bad boy clean especially if it handles conduction heating, which is the most common equipment in the market. Even the smallest of dirt can stop your vape from working properly when it gets in, preventing the whole device from running smoothly.
  • Keep it sealed in a jar. Since cannabis costs a lot, sometimes people don’t actually smoke the whole joint. Once in a while, I don’t finish the whole thing as well. If you want to save some of your weed, search for a properly tight container in your kitchen and keep it sealed. Consuming it all in one sitting is kind of a waste of your money, especially if it’s a good weed. So save some for later!
  • Make a faux spoofer. This requires some resourcefulness and a visit to your local supermarket. Buy some fabric softener sheets. At home, find used paper towel rolls in your bathroom. Fill the rolls with the fabric softener sheets you bought. Use this artificial spoofer and blow your vapor through it whenever you smoke. You will now smell more like a laundry machine. But it’s better than smelling like weed, right?
  • Install window fans. If you’re willing to spend some cash, search for window fans at the nearest hardware store. After all, it is not that expensive. This can help diffuse the strong aroma of your weed if you install it in your room. If you want to be extra cautious, you can also stick some fabric softener sheets on it.
  • Buy popcorn! I’m definitely not a chemist and have no idea why this works, but this method can be confirmed by some weed vapers, including myself! Opening a bag of popcorn is definitely an inexpensive and effortless way of hiding the smell of your herb. The strong smell of popcorn seems to dominate every smell in the air, including the smell of your weed, in a closed room. It may be hard to resist, but it is not for eating!
  • Put a towel under the door. People still debate over the effectiveness of this method but it doesn’t hurt to try, especially if you really are eager to mask the unwanted aroma of your herb. Place a moist towel tightly under the gap of your door from the floor during your vape time to reduce the smell.

When someone tells you they offer an odorless dry cannabis vaporizer, walk away. There’s just no way a plant as strong as weed is not gonna smell. These are just gimmicks to make you buy their products. Don’t fall for their misinformation. Always be aware.

Vaping weed is ultimately one of the safest options whenever you want to get high but don’t want to be detected, even when there are people around. An untrained eye will have a hard time differentiating cigarettes from marijuana, especially e-cigarettes specifically designed for this herb. Try to look for some vaping devices fit for inhaling weed and adapt to them on this purpose.

A lot of people believe in the myth that vaping weed doesn't produce an odor. The fact is that it does. Here are some solutions to help prevent smells.