Does Vaping Weed Smell?

Did you know that the smell of weed can last for hours? You can’t just step away, take a few puffs, and go about your day like nothing happened. 

People are definitely going to stare, and not for the right reasons. 

Everyone has their own opinions on cannabis smell, and weed vaporizers have become the latest tool to try and curb that characteristic smell. However, even vaping isn’t completely odorless.

It’s kind of a no-brainer that weed vapor smells like weed! But the potency of the smell depends on which weed vaporizer you use. 

This article will explain how vaping marijuana works, why cannabis vapor can smell, what it smells like, and the different vaping devices that affect its smell. 

Just for good measure, we’ve also thrown in how you can reduce the smell when you vape weed.

How Does Vaping Weed Work?

Before we get into why it smells when you vape marijuana, you need to understand how vaping cannabis works. 

Basically, a vaping device heats the weed to the point where the cannabinoids like THC and CBD (and others) vaporize, and the device starts to produce vapor. Vaporizing starts at around 230°F (100°C), and temperatures can go as high as 446°F (230°C). 

We don’t recommend vaping at high temperatures, though – you can overheat your weed or inhale toxic byproducts. 

Why Does Vaping Cannabis Smell?

The main culprits for the distinct smell of the cannabis plant are terpenes – the natural fragrance oils found in plants and herbs.

The many medical and recreational marijuana strains have different combinations of terpenes, and with over 30,000 fragrance compounds, each one has its own unique scent. 

When you burn, inhale, and exhale weed, you release the terpenes (as well as other byproducts) into the air, creating that noticeable smell.

Fortunately, the odor produced from vaping is only a slight smell compared to smoking herb in traditional ways. Vaping releases thinner, cleaner vapor that dispels more quickly than cannabis smoke.

What Does Weed Vapor Smell Like?

As you’d expect, the marijuana smell from a vape is the same smell as from smoking cannabis the old-fashioned way; however, that noticeable odor doesn’t linger.

Ultimately, the scent produced depends on the strain or nature of the herb.

Fun fact, some weed vape users like vaporizers that add different fragrances to their vapor, so you have the option of floral or even herbal scents.

Different Smells of Dab Pens vs. Oil Pens vs. Vaporizers

As we mentioned earlier, not all weed vaporizers produce the same scent, and their fragrances vary depending on the device. 

The devices for vaping cannabis include dab pens, oil pens, and vaporizers.

Every device releases terpenes and that weed smell lingers anywhere from 5 to 20 minutes, especially in closed spaces. 

So, if you’re vaping secretly, do it in a well-ventilated area.

The Smell of Dab Pens

Dabs (or wax pens) give off the familiar weed scent and a small amount of heated coil smell, but the aroma is mild. That said, the odor is more potent than that of an oil pen and does last a little longer.

Dab pens utilize various kinds of wax. The type of wax determines how strongly the vapors from these vape pens smell.

You can get soft dabs like budder that have a stronger smell. Then there’s crumble and shatter that don’t have a scent until you heat them.

The Smell of Oil Pens

An oil pen has cartridges that you fill with weed-infused oils. Since weed vape pens vaporize oils, these pens smell the least potent of all devices. 

Don’t be fooled, though. An oil vape pen will still smell slightly.

It’s almost unnoticeable if you take small puffs, but larger oil vape pens have a lingering smell. Regardless, the terpenes will dissipate faster than any other device.

There is almost no difference between the scent of vapor from an e-juice vaporizer and a cannabis oil pen. Nevertheless, those who know how weed smells will likely detect the difference.

The Smell of Vaporizers

Widely used with dry herbs, the vapors from vaporizers are the most aromatic of all devices. 

The scent of weed is quite apparent when it comes to a dry herb vaporizer – so steer clear if you’re hoping to stay fresh!

Most portable dry herb vaporizers use conduction heating, which uses direct heat to vaporize the dry herb. In contrast, most desktop vaporizers use convection heating, which uses hot air to heat the herb indirectly.

A desktop convection vaporizer has a milder smell than portable vaporizers because the heating source isn’t in contact with the herb. But, as their name suggests, portable vaporizers are preferable for outdoor use or when you’re on the go.

With dry herb vapes, you also have to break up the cannabis flower into smaller pieces, which adds to the overall odors in the air.

Weed smokers know that you can smell that famous aroma as soon as you exhale. Vaporizers smell significantly less than smoking weed in the usual way – if you’re not using combustion methods (like smoking a joint or a bong), you just won’t get a strong odor. 

How to Reduce the Smell of Weed?

If you smoke cannabis, you know there is just no way to eliminate the smell of weed. Believe us; we’ve tried everything to cover the scent: air freshener, spoofers with fabric softener sheets, a scented candle – nothing really works. 

That said, there are a few things you can do to keep that strong smell at bay without resorting to trying (and failing) to mask the scent.

Keep Your Vaping Device Clean

No matter which device you use, ensure you clean it regularly. Cleaning your vape helps stave off a buildup of cannabis resin, which can cause your device to smell really bad.

Seal the Weed Container Tightly

You may use any container to store your buds but ensure it’s airtight. Glass jars are usually better because it’s much harder for the smell to escape. Plus, since they’re normally clear, you can keep better track of your supply.

Vape in an Open Space

No matter how small, all devices produce the same aroma, just to varying degrees of potency.

 To reduce the possibility of lingering smells, we recommend vaping in an open space. It doesn’t matter if you are in a tiny room – keep the windows and doors open. 

Better yet, just vape outdoors.


To answer the burning question (pun intended) – vaping weed indeed smells. 

It just smells better and less potent than smoking weed in other ways. 

With this article, we hope you now have a clearer understanding of how vaping weed works and why it smells so mild or, in some cases, so potent.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Does the vaping weed smell linger?

The smell from vaping weed does not last – it usually doesn’t linger on clothes, furniture, or in your hair. Weed vapor should disappear in around 20 minutes, no matter the thickness.

Does vaping weed taste bad?

Vaping does not usually have a sour taste. 

It has a bolder and more pleasant flavor in comparison to smoking weed. However, it should be noted that some situations can lead to a sour taste, like if the temperature of the vaping device is too high.