Dry Herb vs Oil Concentrates vs Wax: Which one to choose?

Vapes might have had a slight lull due to the controversies regarding e-cigarettes but the CDC estimates that there are at least 9 million people who vape on a regular basis.

While this may seem tiny, it’s allowed for a small industry to expand massively, offering people a large variety of products to choose from. From dry herb vapes to oil concentrates and wax vapes, people can choose how they want to use loose-leaf in a safer and healthier manner.

Each type of vaping method has its benefits, and we’ll be describing them in detail. Either way, whichever method you wind up choosing will be a good one!

Why go for dry herb vapes?


Dry herb vapes tend to be very convenient and minimalistic in their design and approach to vaping, offering users a lot of control over the product they choose

Dry herb vapes are very convenient to use. The vaping chamber doesn’t get messy as it does with wax and concentrates, so it’s very easy to clean. Aside from that, there’s not much of a hassle to just...toke. Waxes and concentrates have a large variety that might make things complicated for some. So if you prefer to keep things simple, dry herb vapes are for you. 


Dry herb vapes are more readily available in comparison to wax and oil-based vapes, though some vapes do have the option for both wax and dry herb vaping. The variety within dry herb vaporizers is impressive as well, with many lower-end options having some decent feature lists like variable temperature, wide chambers, etc.

Check out the Best Dry Herb Vapes of 2020


affordable dry herb vape
Dry herb vapes tend to be quite affordable and versatile purchases and are readily available, which can’t be said about waxes/oil concentrates

While dry herb vapes tend to vary in price quite a bit, even the lower end options tend to have a good range of features.

Here at AirVape, most of our vapes are dry herb vapes ranging from the sub-$100 price point to up to $300 with all the bells and whistles.

Why you should skip dry herb vapes

Strength/intensity of high

Wax and concentrates can be a lot stronger, and we mean a lot stronger than dry herb vapes. Most wax and oil concentrates tend to be extracted from loose leaf and, as the name suggests, is concentrated to make it stronger than how it is naturally, by getting rid of impurities and other compounds that get in the way. 

Subjective “lack of high”

Taking things further, some people have reported not feeling high at all or feeling a very mild high when using a dry herb vaporizer. This could be due to a low-temperature heat being used, which leads to a less potent high, but some people do seem to be immune to vaping, in which case vaping overall might just not work for you.

Benefits of Oils

Huge improvements in battery life/heat systems

Oil-based vapes have made huge strides in improving the battery life of a vape along with temperature regulations in the vape chamber

Oil-based vapes tend to be the perfect middle ground. This wasn’t the case a few years ago when oil-based vapes had poor battery life, poor heating systems that led to uncomfortable and questionable highs (and aftertastes). However, oil-based vapes have come a long way since then, with vast improvements to the vapor chamber and the heating mechanism and how much battery these bad boys pack.

More potent high

Vapes used to be considered pot lite at some point in the beginning: not anymore. Not only is it safer than using a pipe or a joint, but it’s also very, very strong when using the right kinds of oils.

This is because manufacturers of the oil tend to extract cannabinoids and remove adulterants/additional stuff from the oil, which makes the THC/CBD content a lot higher. However, it’s important to note that this is with purer oils and cartridges, which are rather difficult to find.


You can find a large range of oils based on CBD and THC content, of course, but also on the basis of other things like flavors, aftertaste, terpenes and refillability. Some people like thicker oils while some like thinner ones. There’s tons of choices and it also allows people to experiment a bunch and see what works best for them.


Vape pens can be carried anywhere and everywhere unlike joints or bongs and they’re much more odor-free and healthier than conventional smoke based forms of loose leaf.

Drawbacks of Oil


best dry herb vapes

Maintaining an oil based vape can become a tedious and drawn out process that diminishes the convenience of vaping significantly

Vape pens are an absolute chore to take care of, particularly when you’re using refillable cartridges. A weekly clean is a must when using regularly, and that’s aside from having to fill up the cartridge again and again. Throwaway cartridges do exist but they’re not particularly good for the environment, so we wouldn’t want you to indulge in that.

So-so battery life/temperature control

While battery life and temperature controls for oil-based vapes have improved significantly, there’s still a long way to go to make sure it’s consistently usable. Much like the battery life in our smartphones, the process takes a while but eventually, it gets there. To be sure, there are several vapes, even in our catalog, that have great battery life. Just had to put it out there.

Difficult to find high-quality oils


oil wax vape

Finding high quality, unadulterated oils for a more potent and smooth high is a difficult process because most vape oils are mixed with other oils to make it thicker/flavorful, etc

While oils for your vape are pretty easy to find, finding good ones is a task and then some because most oil and cartridge manufacturers tend to mix THC and CBD oils with fillers and thickeners that make oils less potent (and poorer in quality), leading to a mellow and easy high rather than a potent and strong one. 

The addition of Vitamin E acetate as a thickener in vape juices, both in CBD/THC along with nicotine based solutions is one of the main reasons which led to bans in states in the country and in some countries in the world. Vitamin E acetate is used for dermatological issues.

Anyway, getting back to the point. This suits people who are specifically looking for a mellow experience, however, people looking for stronger, potent highs ought to try wax based vapes, which is what we’re talking about next.



How about them Waxes?

Not to be confused with candle wax, of course, wax concentrates for loose leaf tend to be extracts in a more solid form. These usually need specific types of vapes, however, as mentioned before, some dry herb vapes also double as wax vapes.

Buy Hybrid Vapes

They’re really potent


dab wax dry herb vape

Dabs (not this kind) are very, very potent and tend to deliver a fantastic experience for people looking for stronger and better highs

These bad boys will skyrocket you to another planet because wax concentrates are pretty astonishingly strong and they’re usually much stronger than even the purest of oils.

Strong flavor

Dry herb might be king of the flavor department, but waxes come pretty darn close to how a strain of marijuana would taste and smell like. And since it’s extracted and the heating process for wax (or dab pens) is different, the resulting flavor is a lot more earthy and somewhat smokey despite being vapor. Cool, isn’t it?

The rest (Variety over convenience though)

flavour wax vape
A large variety, tons of flavor and absolute convenience. Does it get better than this?

It’s convenient and the sheer variety it offers is much better than oils. There’s crumble, shatter, resin etc, all of which sound exactly like they look. Dabs are also very convenient. Who woulda thunk?

How about them dabs drawbacks?


We’ve left aside the cost of buying a vape because they’re an investment. But waxes are not only tough to find, but they’re expensive as well. For many, the high price tag justifies itself, but for some, dry herb or oils provide a similar experience while being cheaper. It’s up to personal preference really.

Difficult to maintain


If you thought oils are difficult to maintain, you’ll see how bad it is when you buy a dab pen. Frequent cleanings still make things only slightly better, so taking utmost care of your baby is really important. In many situations, replacing your wax coils might be necessary as well, unfortunately.

Dab pens are somewhat in a nascent stage of development, so it makes sense that some of it’s problems are deal-breakers. However, with time and/or if you’re willing to spend a little more than usual on a vape, you’d be surprised at how well a dab pen just might be.

Regardless of what you choose, going with any type of vape is always a lot better than using conventional smoking methods because of how much healthier vaping is, the variety it offers, the long term affordability, and the absolute convenience and discrete nature of it. I mean, what’s not to like?