Hookah Buying Guide for Beginners

Recent years have shown a grate increase in the interest of Hookahs all over the world. Even thou this smoking contraption originated from the Orient. Places like Syria, Egypt, Turkey, and Lebanon it has found its place in western culture. They were originally handcrafted in the above-mentioned countries, but in recent years the production has become more mechanicalized, and they are made on assembly lines in Chinese factories, produced for American companies.

They might all look the same to you, and you might think that the only difference is in the color or the design. There is more to hookahs than meets the eye. Since they comprise of different parts that can be assembled and disassembled, depending on where you want to use it, you should at least know what the main parts of it are before heading to the hookah store. This is why we are going to talk about some of the features and things you should look out for, depending on your needs and how you plan to use it.

Hookah Parts

The hookah has a recognizable shape that everyone knows, but what is it really made of? The elements are always the same, and they should be present in every individual peace. Before buying one, check if everything is there. The parts are from head to bottom: the head, head gasket, tray, shank, hose gasket, hose port, release valve, vase gasket, vase, hose port opening, down- stream and the hose. Take special care to check gaskets, because if they don’t work properly you won’t be able to take in the smoke.


The above-mentioned parts are always the same, the only difference is in the number of hoses you have and the size of the vase, and other parts. Usually, they come with either one, two or four hoses. Older versions are made in such a way that every hose that is not used has to be shut by the other smoker’s fingers. The new versions have a special valve system that automatically closes the hoses so no one has to use their fingers.

Coal and flavor

Beside the mentioned parts, you need water, coal and specially prepared tobacco for smoking in a hookah. You can buy everything you need in specialized shops, where you can choose among a platter of different aromas until you determine your best hookah flavors. After that, it’s just a matter of stocking up.  

The prices are pretty much standard. You can find a good hookah for 30 US dollars, everything above that is customization, the basic parts are always the same. You can choose different sizes and metals (brass pipes are highly recommended because they do not corrode), and the shape and color of the vase. These additional tweaks to your hookah can cost you a bit more, but in general, this is not an expensive pastime. Now it is easily found in a lot of stores, and there are a lot of flavors so you can never get bored.