What Is a Roach Clip?

Take a look at the world of weed these days, and you’ll start to notice a common theme: people are super into roach clips.

These small bits of paraphernalia are one of the trendiest tools for smoking joints these days. As such, you can now find everything from cheapos to gold-plated status symbols available for purchase.

Below, we take a look at what a roach clip is, how it can improve your smoking experience, whether it’s worth the money, and the possibilities for different types of roach clips — including DIY. (Hint: it’s a great addition to your rig.)

Table of Contents

What Is a Roach Clip?

If you’ve ever smoked a joint — particularly one that’s been rolled tight — you know that things start to heat up as you get toward the end of it. As your joint burns down, it becomes small and tricky to hold, especially when it starts to burn your fingertips.

Enter the roach clip. This classic tool came around in the 1970s and can consist of tweezers, an alligator clip, or any other tool designed to help you smoke your roach down to the very end without melting your fingerprints off. While there are plenty of ways to accomplish this task, not all of them are terribly cool-looking or fun. But you can be sure of this: it’s the best way to get the most out of your weed.

How a Roach Clip Works

Because none of us want to end our smoke session with a blister, it’s wise to grab your roach clip before your joint gets too short. In fact, it’s not a bad idea to smoke your entire joint using a roach clip. It’s a bit bourgeois, for sure, but who says you can’t make smoking weed an occasion now and then?

A roach clip that’s fixed to your joint from start to finish also makes it easier to pass it around your circle of friends.

roach clip

The Different Kinds of Roach Clips

Honestly, the sky’s the limit when it comes to creative roach clip ideas. If you can use something to hold a roach, then it’s fair game to be a roach clip. However, some things work better than others. Here are the most common types of roach clips.

1. The DIY Approach

Let’s start with the most rudimentary form of roach clip: the wooden match. If you take a match stick and split it down the middle, you can pinch the joint between the two ends. Same idea with a chopstick.

Then comes the idea of the paperclip. Simply take a paperclip and shape it into a V. Place the joint in the crease. The upside is that the paperclip itself isn’t combustible; the downside is that the joint can easily slip and fall out.

Next comes the bobby pin. This pin is used for hair and has a flat side and a ridged side — perfect for putting a joint in between.

If you were an artist in the 1960s or ’70s, you would have naturally begun to add flair to these basic designs. Garry Knox Bennet, for example, became well known for the fanciness of his roach designs, which look like miniature statues. Eventually, though, the next evolution of roach clips was upon us.

2. The Alligator Clip

Alligator clips are essentially clothespins made from metal that you can use in electronics. They’re great for artistic freedom, as you can easily attach them to feathers, decorated wires, beads, dice, or other objects of your choosing. Once they clip onto a joint, you definitely won’t lose it.

3. The Hemostat

Hemostats are like miniature scissors but without sharp ends or edges. These medical tools are perfect for holding joints or even larger rolls like cigar-sized pre-rolls.

4. Joint Holders

Joint holders are increasingly popular. Essentially a finger ring with a roach holder, they keep your fingers safe while providing some style to your sesh. You’ll find them made from a variety of materials, including wood, stone, and silicone.

You Do You

The most important thing to remember is this: you can do a roach clip a million different ways, and you should choose yours based on your style and preferences. Whether you go with a clean hemostat look, a dedicated clip decked out with DnD dice, or something else, you won’t regret your choice.

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JJ Smoak

Brooklyn native, accent-having, travel lover, wordsmith and bud enthusiast. Versed from the streets of NYC, mixed with some world influence, writer/editor and medical user extraordinaire, JJ is here to tell you like it is and guide you to the finest. Brooklyn's favorite feminine stoner, your neighborhood contributor, wrapping leaves like a bandage and bringing you along for the ride.

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