Personal Air Filter Review
Is this smoke eliminator magic or is it snake oil?
Review & Photos by: Randy Shaffer
Ohio’s Smoking Ban
Smoking cannabis in Ohio is illegal under state law. But that’s not going to stop patients from smoking cannabis in private. We’ve already talked about how unenforceable the smoking ban is in Ohio. And that’s to say nothing for the patients who find that smoking, and only smoking, is best for them. To make matters worse, vaporizers and vape oils have come under a lot of scrutiny in recent weeks, which makes patients antsy to try something new.
The Ohio Medical Marijuana Control Program has issued a statement noting that vape oils and products in Ohio are safe to use, but many patients are weary. This makes smoking a good alternative for anyone worried that vaping may hurt their lungs or negatively impact their overall health. But smoke can cause all kinds of other problems, from second-hand smoke, health issues, and troubles with smell.
The Odor Of Cannabis
Anyone who’s smoked cannabis over the years has probably tried, and failed at least once or twice, to mask the smell of their cannabis. From candles to odor eliminators and gels … most just don’t do the trick. You not only still have the smell of your sweet cannabis, but also all the smoke byproducts. The odor eliminators simply serve to cloud the odors with a fresh scent. But they could take days to completely clear the smoke odor from the air.
The same goes for vapor, too. Anyone who’s vaped knows that the aroma of vaped cannabis terpenes can linger for a few hours after vaping. And candles and odor eliminators work only so-so, eliminating the odor in half the time.
But if you need the smell of cannabis to dissipate quickly, there really isn’t much out there. Or is there???
The Smokebuddy has been around for several years now, but only recently has it started popping up all throughout the country. This unique device touts that it can not only eliminate the odor of cannabis, but also the associated smoke and vapor.
And they’re not messing around! Video tutorials suggest this thing essentially works like magic. The user inhales smoke, exhales into the Smokebuddy device, and air comes out. The smoke and smell stay trapped inside the Smokebuddy.
Price ranges between $15-70, depending on the size of the unit, or where you find it (head shops tend to charge more than Amazon, for example). The device itself comes in a variety of colors and designs, with three sizes, ranging from a small unit (the junior) about the size of a cell phone, the original unit, which is about the size of a soda can, and mega-sized unit, which is about as big as a canteen. Each device also comes with a keychain featuring a knockoff Lego figure of a smiling emoji mascot named Buddy. Units also include a cap for the openings, if you’re on the go and need to be discreet.
How Smokebuddy Works
Smoke is filtered through ceramic beads and carbon, which captures and holds the odor and smoke, leaving only fresh air in its wake. Anyone who’s ever grown cannabis will likely know how this system works. There are even tutorials for how to create a Sploof on Youtube. A Sploof is essentially the same thing — a carbon filter inside a paper towel roll. Smokebuddy has simply perfected the design.
This also means that the Smokebuddy is not a permanent device as carbon eventually wears out. You will have to replace the unit every few weeks or months, depending on usage, once all the carbon has absorbed the smoke.
Smokebuddy: The Review
Sadly, my sister passed away recently. She didn’t live in Ohio, so I found myself staying in a hotel for two weeks in a state with legal cannabis, but no way to smoke it. After all, the hotel doesn’t allow smoking, so the smell would alert guests and possibly staff. But I was grieving, and wanted to medicate to stave off the symptoms of anxiety and PTSD. This presented the perfect scenario for me to medicate and try using Smokebuddy.
I was not expecting very much. I had used carbon filters and homemade Spoofs before and found them to only work so-so. But my lack of confidence erased with just one exhale. Not only did the Smokebuddy filter the smoke, but it filtered the scent of my cannabis as well. And it worked with both a bowl and a vaporizer. The only surreal thing was that the taste of the smoke lingered in my mouth, even though the air was clear. It was trippy!
This product is easy to use, portable and fairly inexpensive. The original unit can be purchased for about $12-25, depending on where you get it. Make sure your unit is authentic. Official units will have a reflective sticker. There are tons of colors and designs. I ended up buying a special edition version that was Vegas-themed.
I actually tested this at first by using the Smokebuddy for 2-3 bowls. I then left my room for 20 minutes and returned to see if I could detect any odor. Upon my return, I noticed no odor or lingering smoke smell. I was able to use the Smokebuddy the entire time I stayed in the hotel.
Smokebuddy Tips & Tricks
- How Long Does Smokebuddy Last?
- Sadly, a Smokebuddy unit does not last forever. The device should hold aromas and smoke for about a month or two, or more depending on usage. But even after about two weeks of usage, I did notice just a faint glimmer of smoke coming out the opposite end of the Smokebuddy. I also noticed just a slight bit of smoke would escape when I released my grip on the Smokebuddy.
- Tips for Exhaling
- I would recommend inhaling with your nostrils after your initial exhale, and then exhale a second time before removing your lips from the device. This ensures all the smoke has vacated the unit chamber and become trapped in the carbon. That being said, this residual smoke still didn’t add much of a smell to my room. I added two $1 odor eliminating gels to the room to clear up any other residual smoke or vapor smell, just to be safe.
- Is Smokebuddy Better For Vaping or Smoke?
- The Smokebuddy does a better job with smoke than vapor. I tried the Smokebuddy with both and found that the terpenes still seemed to escape the carbon inside the device, though their aroma was cut in half compared to vaping without Smokebuddy. Again, some candles or an odor eliminating gel ought to top off any unwanted odors.
- Does Smokebuddy Work With Joints or Cigarettes?
- The Smokebuddy won’t really work with cigarettes or a joint as it can’t filter the smoke emitting from the paper. Smokebuddy is best for bowls, one-hitters, bongs, dabbing units and vaping devices.
- Airing Out Your Smokebuddy
- The Smokebuddy needs to dry out after each use. A lot of heat and humidity is expelled when you exhale. This heat and humidity goes into the device, leaving the inside with a layer of sweat. Over time, this will smell and your carbon will be forced to work overtime, cleaning your smoke as well as the humid air. Be sure to turn your Smokebuddy on its side and leave it out and let it dry after each use. This ensures that your Smokebuddy will last longer.
- Best Method For Exhaling Into A Smokebuddy
- The opening for the Smokebuddy is odd. I found myself trying to figure out new methods to expel the smoke in easier ways. Ultimately, I chose to wrap my lips around the opening, rather than place my lips inside the opening, as less smoke seemed to seep out as I exhaled. A sippy-cup style opening seems like it would make more sense, though that would make it harder to dry out the Smokebuddy after use. Both methods, lips in or out, work pretty well, so try both and see which works for you and the shape of your lips/mouth.
Should I Buy A Smokebuddy?
If you live in an apartment or a place where you need to mask the smell and odor of cannabis, Smokebuddy is a MUST. This product is great for any Ohio medical marijuana patient looking to medicate in private, without all the odor, whether you’re smoking or vaping medical cannabis.
The device doesn’t last forever, so keep that in mind. The mega unit is probably best for heavy cannabis users. But the junior unit or the original size would be perfect for casual Ohio medical marijuana patients.