Everyone starts somewhere when it comes to the art of rolling joints (or blunts or spliffs; learn more about the differences here). Maybe you’re a natural; maybe you’ve got some practicing to do. No matter where you are in the rolling game, we want to help you out! Let’s dive into our guide on how to roll a joint perfectly every time. We’ll also show you how to roll a joint without a filter.
How to Roll a Joint in 5 Steps
As you go into this, just remember: it’s okay to make mistakes. You may even have to just start over with a new joint altogether if you run into too many snags. No problem, you could still use the same flower and just start with a new rolling paper. We’ll go over each step, broken down, so you can learn to roll a perfect joint each time.
Step One: Grind the Bud
This is where a grinder comes in especially handy. It’ll take some time for you to perfect the grind level for your personal taste, much like how many people have preferences for coffee grinds (finer for espresso or more coarse for drip). Some people prefer it finely ground, while others may even skip the grinder and pull the nugs apart by hand—though that isn’t our personal preference! We recommend starting with a medium grind—you’ll find your preference eventually.
Step Two: Break Out the Paper
Take out a single sheet of your preferred rolling paper and set it on the table or rolling tray in front of you. Make sure the glue side is up! (Tip: the glue side should be the shiny side.) It should run horizontally from left to right.
Step Three: Spread that Bud!
It’s time to pack your joint with some cannabis. Distribute your ground flower evenly across the joint paper, ensuring you don’t reach too far up the filter side of it.
This is, of course, if you opt for a filter.
If you do want a filter, you can buy pre-made filters. Alternatively, the DIY solution is to us a piece of cardboard (something the weight of the packaging your papers come in works best). For the DIY version, make sure you fold your filter accordion-style. As in, make the filter take the shape of a W, or a couple of Ws. Place the filter in the end held by your dominant hand.)
It’ll take some time and practice to learn how much cannabis you prefer in a joint. Generally, most joints are about the size of a standard cigarette, or maybe even a thin cigar. That comes out to usually less than half a gram. In fact, the typical joint is about 0.3 grams.
Step Four: Start Rolling Your Joint
Okay, now here’s the toughest part—no pressure! Carefully, slowly, pick up the cannabis-filled paper in both your hands. Your palms should be facing up.
Step Five: Lick and Stick!
Next, make the paper sticky by running your tongue along the top edge of the rolling paper (the long edge, farthest from you). What you get wet should be mostly the glue section of the paper. (Again, the glue side of the paper should be the shiny part!)
But don’t get too slobbery with it! A little wetting goes a long way. Think about licking an envelope. Plus, too much spit is just a party foul (yes, even if you’re smoking by yourself). The joint won’t burn as well if the paper is too wet.
Using your index finger and thumbs to scoop the paper into a U shape, gently roll the paper up back and forth lengthwise. The goal is to coax the ground flower down into an even line that spans the horizontal width of the center of the paper.
Tighten the curve more and more until you begin to tuck the non-wet side of the paper into the center, creating a tube. Continue to rock it back and forth with your fingers until the grounds are completely tucked into the paper. Think of this step as constructing a small, tightly-wrapped burrito. But, you know, a burrito filled with cannabis.
Once you have your burrito, it’s time to seal the deal! This is the moment of triumph you’ve been waiting for! If the paper appears dry, you may need to wet the glue again (if it took a bit to actually roll the thing into its burrito form). While it can be an awkward motion to move the rolled joint back to your lips without loosening the roll, it’s sometimes necessary to pull off the perfect joint. We believe in you!
If you did it right, nothing will fall out of the joint when you hold it up vertically. You did it. Joint rolling skills unlocked!