Vaporizers are well known as being one of the healthiest ways to consume 'aromatherapy herbs' on the planet. It takes advantage of the boiling points of the various chemicals inside of your buds. It evaporates these into a potent, but harmless vapor that contains none of the tars and toxins you find in smoke from combustion.
Of course, as with anything the process can be refined further. This of course means that there could be even healthier ways to consume herb. Before we can work this out, we have to understand how vaporization works.
Conduction and Convection
There are two main types of heating systems you can find in vaporizers. Conduction, which works like a kitchen stove, putting herb into direct contact with the heat. And convection, which works like a fan oven, heating the air around your herb.
Conduction and convection both produce toxin-free vapor, but they do it in slightly different ways. Conduction is the fastest form of heating, it puts the heat directly to the surface area of the herb in contact with it. This rapidly produces vapor, but if you don’t clean it often enough, and if you push it too hard you can end up hitting your herb’s flash point. This means that combustion will occur, leading to smoke and toxins. Which isn’t exactly healthy.
Convection is far healthier, but also far slower. It gradually heats the entire surface area of your herb by allowing hot air to flow across it. This gradually builds up a pure and tasty vapor that is totally free of any toxins and the risk of any combustion.
If pure health is what you care about then convection is the way to go, but that isn’t the only factor to consider.
Desktop or Portable
Choosing whether you go for a desktop or a portable vaporizer is more than simple preference. It all depends on how you want to enjoy your dry herb. If you want long sessions in the comfort of your own home last thing at night, then a desktop vaporizer may be the way to go. Desktop vapes often designed to allow for increased airflow, so you can expect a purer vapor. The Volcano from Storz & Bickel is renowned for the purity of the vapor it delivers.
If you want shorter, more frequent hits, then a portable vaporizer is ideal. If you want to be mindful about health then its best to splash out a little more and get a convection or hybrid vaporizer like the Mighty from Storz & Bickel, which delivers all the purity of the volcano but in a much smaller package.