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Hookah Charcoal Guide: A Comparative Look at our Hookah Charcoal Selection

Hookah Charcoal Guide: A Comparative Look at our Hookah Charcoal Selection

By Christophanes / February 4, 2009

They say that diamonds are a girl's best friend, but most hookah enthusiasts (of either sex) prefer their carbon in a more useful form - Hookah Charcoal! With so many types, sizes, and shapes of coal from which to choose, though, it can be hard to decide which coal works best for you. We've compiled this list for you to compare types of coal at a glance. Hookah charcoal comes in two basic categories: quick-light and natural. Read through our blog on How to Smoke a Hookah - Hookah Charcoal and Heat Management for additional information on how the type of coal impacts the way your hookah smokes.

Quick-light Hookah Charcoals can be ignited with a disposable plastic lighter, or even a book of matches. Made of compressed coal dust, quick-light coals contain an accelerant (typically sulfur) to ignite the entire coal after only a portion has reached the sparking temperature. Because of the chemical starters in the coal, one should take care to let the coal burn for a few minutes (until little black is showing on the surface) so that all of the accelerant has burned off.

Natural Hookah Charcoal is most often pieces of pyrolyzed wood, wood dust, or in the case of Coco Nara, compressed coconut shells.  Because natural coals contain no chemical lighting agents, they require a steady source of heat to ignite. Here we present our selection of both natural and quick-light hookah charcoal:

Quick-Lighting Hookah Charcoal

Golden Quick-light Hookah Charcoal:  With its signature gold wrapping, Golden coals are among the cleanest burning quicklight coals on the market. Available in 33mm and 40mm (for those who prefer greater heat or using larger bowls), Golden coals are the West's version of the popular Middle Eastern 3 Kings coal. Golden Coal and 3 Kings coals are ideal for the smoker on the go, as they require only a small flame to ignite. Keep a single roll in your hookah bag or case as a backup, to ensure you've always a way to smoke.

Three Kings Quick-light Hookah Charcoal: The most trusted brand of quicklighting coals in the Middle East, Three Kings is an internationally recognized brand of quicklight coals. Like Golden coals, Three Kings is available in boxes of 100 pieces (10 rolls of 10 coals each), in the 33mm or 40mm sizes. Along with Golden Coal, these coals are perfect when taking your hookah around with you, as they light up easily in seconds with only a small flame.

Exotica Easy-lite Hookah Charcoal: Easier to light than natural coals, but without the chemical expedients of quicklights, Exotica's easy light coals have a silver coating that helps reflect heat back into the coal, and flakes off when the coal is ready for smoking. While you will need to hold these coals in a flame until several of the corners are glowing nicely, you don't need to expose the coal to constant heat as you would a natural coal.

Silver Flint Hookah Charcoal: Similarly to the Exotica Easy Lights, Silver Flint coals are as easy on your wallet as they are to light. Because we're overstocked on these coals, don't miss our exclusive Clearance pricing: these coals are going fast!!

Natural Hookah Charcoals

Romman Lemonwood Natural Hookah Charcoal: Romman's Lemonwood coal is some of the cleanest hookah charcoal you'll ever smoke. Made from raw Lemonwood and using an age-old coal production method, these natural coals maintain a temperature perfectly suited for shisha tobacco. Because of the traditional production methods, the coals will range in size from tiny flakes to large chunks that require breaking up. Per mass, a bag of Romman Lemonwood will last at least as long as a roll of quicklight coals while delivering a superior, cleaner smoking experience.

Coco Nara Natural Hookah Charcoal: The first of the coconut coals offered on our website, these super-clean burning coals are some of our favorites. Each Coco Nara coal is the perfect size for tongs, and like Romman, holds the perfect temperature for smoking hookah tobacco. Coco Nara coals also ash more gracefully than any other coal we've tried; the ash holds together instead of blowing over the bowl and tray.

Exotica Natural Hookah Charcoal: Exotica's popular finger-style natural coals are a market standard for reliable, clean smoking coals. Each coal "finger" is perforated into 3 pieces, allowing for each piece to be easily broken apart with your fingers.

Al Ajdad Natural Hookah Charcoal: This traditional brand of natural coal is made in Jordan, and arrives in uniform, round 'fingers' of coal that, like Exotica, should be broken up prior to igniting. One bag will last for roughly 50 sessions (depending on number of smokers, tobacco brand, and bowl size).

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