For most people in Western cultures like Australia, New Zealand or the states, a hookah is generally something they are only familiar with through popular media. It’s a common site, a Casbah in some exotic location with locals in traditional dress gathered around, talking about the local village gossip while idly enjoying a hookah. It is a cliché and a stereotype, but it is one that people from these cultures would say is definitely accurate, one they would probably approve of.
The hookah is first and foremost a social appliance, albeit one that is also perfectly fine for individual use as well. In the cultures whence it originates, it was common to negotiate trade agreements, political alliances and even marriages all gathered around one of these devices. This is still very much the case at least in establishments where smoking isn’t banned in these regions.
But, as someone not from these cultures, you may be a little unfamiliar with how they work, why they are becoming so popular, etc. Allow us to do mystify them for you a little bit. The way they work isn’t very complicated, relying on the fact that the smoke released from the special tobacco (called chillum or shisha) being heavier than air, so it sinks to the bottom, hollow chamber of the hookah itself.
Chillum, itself, is very unique compared to other tobacco. It is extremely moist and sticky, very luminous and coloration and pungently flavored. If you try to put it in a pipe and smoke it, it would be nearly impossible to do. This is because it isn’t intended to burn it all, but be roasted and vaporized by ambient heat from charcoal. This charcoal itself is not grill charcoal, but a special variety that doesn’t produce much smoke. None of the smoke from the charcoal, if any is produced, is actually consumed by the users.
It’s not really smoke, but basically the oils and flavorings from the tobacco. It is heavier, more flavorful and more moist than cigarette or pipe smoke, but is also far less irritating and drying. Due to not being actual smoke, it is also considerably less hazardous to your health. You see, traditional smoke of any sort is basically ash, the oils of whatever was burned and various carcinogenic byproduct compounds. These are the things that make cigarette smoke so toxic to humans, and why they cause cancer and heart disease as well as emphysema and other horrific symptoms.
Chillum isn’t 100% healthy, but nothing in life really is. It is orders of magnitude healthier and more pleasant than cigarette smoke, however making it extremely popular in modern times when traditional smoking just isn’t tolerated by most.
If you are interested in switching to a hookah for at least part of your smoking needs, you’re in luck. Chillum NZ is your number one site for Soex and other leading brands of hookah and chillum alike, offering you varieties beyond the scope of imagination.