Sign Up to Win a Free Hookah

Hookah Love Blog

Hookah knowledge, hookah debate, hookah fun
31 Oct

Hookah Shisha Bowl Buying Guide

Hookah Bowl Guide

Hookah-Shisha Bowl Guide

If you’re new to the hookah culture, our bowl selection may be a little overwhelming with the variety hole placements and sizes. We hope today’s blog will give you the knowledge and power to go out there and make an informed decision.

Egyptian Hookah Bowls

Egyptian hookah bowls

The Egyptian bowl is the most commonly owned clay bowl in the community because they come free with most hookahs and they’re cheap. We have uniformly shaped bowls with multiple glaze colors, as well as traditional brown bowls that vary in size. 9 out of 10 hookah lounges will serve this style of bowl and it’s an easy bowl to start off with to find your groove.

Sessions with an Egyptian bowl will require that you fill the interior with shisha tobacco up to the height of your desired smoking preference. Adding too much tobacco will result in a harsher (hotter) inhale depending on your heat input. Always remember to break up the shisha as you fill the bowl to allow for even distribution of heat.

We recommend 2-4 pieces of natural charcoal depending on the size of the bowl and desired smoke output. Each bowl will hold approximately 10-20 grams of shisha tobacco.

Vortex Hookah Bowls

Vortex Hookah Bowls

Before the birth of the phunnel bowl the progression in bowl collecting started with Egyptian bowls and Vortex bowls were the next step. The capped spire prevents any juice from leaking into your hookah and a tight foil application creates a vortex flow of air to pass through the tobacco.  Sahara Smoke Vortex bowls feature  large air channels around the spire with a  wider underside  opening to fit snug on more hookah bowl ports.

The latest entry to the Vortex collection was the Stone Vortex, crafted in the US with stoneware clay. These bowls are able to handle high amounts of heat and provide better heat retention than the lightweight ceramic material of the original Vortex. When you’re ready to pack a bowl, just sprinkle the shisha around the spire and avoid blocking any of the holes, or use a denser pack for the thick walls of the Stone version.

Using a fluff pack method with the Vortex bowl will save on shisha consumption by using 12-20 grams of shisha tobacco per session, and we recommend 2-4 pieces of natural charcoal depending on your desired heat output and bowl materials.

Phunnel Hookah Bowls

Phunnel Hookah Bowls

The most popular bowl style of the modern hookah world is the Phunnel bowl; we have more variation of this style than any other bowl design. Why do people love them? Options. The Phunnel bowl category gives you options that most hookah pros want control of, such as the width of the spire and interior depth. This design features one central air channel that prevents juice from sliding down and shouldn’t be blocked with shisha during the packing process.

(Hookah Tip: If it’s packed loosely, tap the shisha down around the spire to prevent tobacco from falling inside.) Size will play a big role in this bowls performance; wider spires give more airflow and smaller spires create a tighter inhale. The amount of holes in your foil will also have an affect on the smoothness of your inhale. You also have the option of punching holes above the spire or not. Some people say it’s a game changer, while others say it does nothing. You be the judge.

Enjoy any style of tobacco with these bowls, and most of the love for this design comes from the dark leaf fan base (I.E.; Tangiers, Vintage, Trifecta) because of the ease in dense pack preperation. Our Phunnel bowls are commonly crafted with high quality clay materials but you’ll also find some silicone and glass bowl options as well. These bowls will vary in shisha consumption based on the type of tobacco you use; blonde leaf blends require approximately 14-25 grams, while dark leaf  uses 18-30 grams.

Hybrid Phunnel Hookah Bowls

Hybrid Phunnel Hookah Bowls

Over the years we’ve seen new designs and tweaks on the  classic phunnel design to keep the ball rolling on new products and provide options based on feedback from the online community. The popular hybrid phunnel bowls are all created for a reason and, in most cases, it’s to increase airflow, like the notched out spire of the Rook bowl. There are also bowls that provide support during your session, like the bridged spire of the Predator, bowl that  prevents your foil from being sucked down and cutting off the air flow.

This category is fan favored by the dark leaf smokers because they can provide the best of both worlds in function and something new to try through the exploration of hookah.

All of our Hybrid Phunnel bowls are crafted from thick clay materials and vary in shisha consumption, please refer to the product pages to see the available shisha capacity.  If you’ve worked up to this bowl, we probably don’t need to tell how many pieces of charcoal to use, but if we did it would be 2-4 depending on what you packed and how you prepared it.

Lipped Hookah Bowls

Lipped Hookah Bowls

Heat management devices have drastically changed the way we taste our hookah flavors and these bowls all feature a lipped interior to provide a more secure fit with these devices. The Kaloud team created the Vitria bowl for their Lotus heat management device with a thick glass interior and silicone exterior, so you can expect a perfect cut.

Clay artisans, like the Alpaca team, answered the request from fans for more lipped ceramic bowls by creating the Lerook and Lipache. These bowls will usually have a large capacity(20-30g) for shisha and we recommend fluff packing the interior or add more for a stronger flavor. The heat management devices should be used with 3-4 pieces of charcoal depending on their size.

The Other Hookah Bowls

The Other Hookah Bowls

If you’re exploring through all of our bowl options you’ll come across some designs that are a little out of the box, or may not even be designed for shisha tobacco. Starbuzz wanted to give hookah smokers a taste of the vape side with their e-head bowl that utilizes high quality e-juice to bring full flavor with each inhale. We also offer the Hydra bowl with it’s multiple insert that allow the user to experience airflow from an assortment of interchangeable bowl designs like the Vortex, Phunnel, and Egyptian.

Bowls aren’t always made from silicone and clay as we provide metal options like the Minzari Crown bowl or a Pyrex composition like the Mazaj bowl. The Apple On Top won’t require heat management devices like  foil or the lotus because it arrives ready to roll out of the package.

It All Bowls Down To..

Everyone will develop their own preference in what they want out of a hookah session depending on what you like to smoke and how you prepare your sessions. Some of us will try different bowl designs only to discover that they were Egyptian bowl fans all along, while the rest of us enjoy adding new options to our evolving arsenal. It could be the color option that really sets your hookah a part from your friends, or you’ll find the perfect size to fit in your hands that you never knew you needed.

Let us know what your favorite bowl type is below.

Thanks for reading and HAPPY SMOKING!

Leave a Reply