The recent explosion in the legalized cannabis market has created a massive interest in concentrates.  Sales are exceeding expectations; states are raking in an enormous amount of money in tax profits.
For years, casual cannabis consumers have shied away from concentrates. Most dabbers were experienced connoisseurs who appreciated the high cannabinoid and terpene content of their oil.
Nowadays, it wouldn’t be surprising if someone who’s never tried cannabis decided to take a dab. Grandmothers, students, business leaders: the average dispensary is thronged with everyday people.
However, if you want to get the best flavor starting from your dab, you first need to season your nail.
What is Seasoning?
Put simply, seasoning is way of preparing your nail for dabbing by applying oil. Chefs use the same method when they purchase a new pan. The thin coating of oil applied to the nail during the seasoning process allows pores in the material to essentially be filled.
Why Should I Season My Nail?
Dab nails aren’t created lovingly by hand. They’re mass-produced products that are made in a factory. There are lots of potential hands touching your nail before it gets to you. High heat kills the germs lurking in the dust and grime on the nail. Additionally, cleaning and seasoning a dab nail can aid in removing residual chemicals left behind from the manufacturing process.
If you’re using a ceramic or glass nail, you can skip the seasoning step. Just make sure that you properly clean it. Some sites do include ceramic nails in their seasonings discussions; however, this
However, if you’re using a titanium nail, you should definitely take the time to season it. You want to get rid of the factory, metallic taste that often clings to them. Most sources also recommend seasoning quartz nails, although there is some disagreement.
Additionally, by forming a coating of oil on the nail, the flavors of the product you’re consuming are thought to beenriched.
Ready to get started? Here’s what you need:
- Dab Nail,
- Metal pliers or tongs,
- Butane Torch,
- Oil (e.g., cooking oils like coconut or hemp oil; a small amount of the concentrate to be dabbed, or what one site calls “claim” (recovered oil from a different dab rig)
Once you have everything ready, safely and patientlyfollow these steps:
- Secure your nail with the pliers or tongs,
- Heat the nail with your torch until it glows red. One source indicates this can take approximately one minute. Another site indicates that this process should be 20-25 seconds for titanium nails.
- Allow it to cool to ambient conditions.
- Repeat steps 1-3. While there is variation in how many times one should perform these steps, as with many things in science, three times seems to be practical.
- Heat your nail until it’s red hot, then let it cool for a few seconds.
- Carefully coat or paint the entire surface to be used with your dabber andyour chosen oil.
- Let the nail cool down to ambient conditions.
That’s it! You can now enjoy great-tasting dabs.
In an age where the market continues producing higher quality products, cleaning and seasoning your nail allows you to fully appreciate the taste of your concentrates.
1. Sager, K., et al, “Made from concentrate? A national web survey assessing dab use in the United States”, Drug and Alcohol Dependence, 2018, Volume 190.