Navigate to our accessibility widget

Saturday February 6, 2021

By Erin Hiatt


If you’ve spent a bunch of money on your quartz banger – or even if you haven’t – it’s important to keep it nice and clean. Not only does keeping your banger clean help it look nicer in the long run, they’ll stay in good shape longer and improve the flavor of your dab. To keep your banger looking shiny and new, you’ll need to get in the habit of Q-Tip tech, the process of cleaning your nail or banger with a Q-Tip (or any cotton swab) after every use to maintain the freshness of the nail. The real trick to keeping your banger clean is to Q-tip immediately after a dab is taken, while the nail is still warm.

Banger Care Essentials: What You’ll Need

Before we dig in on the supplies you’ll need to keep your banger clean, there are some items out there that might seem like a good idea but nonetheless should not be used. That includes bleach, or products that contain sulfuric, acetic, and gluconic acid. Be sure to avoid abrasive cleaning tools. They won’t help and will ultimately end up scratching your banger. A cotton swab will more than suffice, especially if you clean your banger from the get-go.

Q-tips and isopropyl alcohol
isopropyl alcohol and standard Q-tips are the most effective for keeping your banger clean.

You’ll need a few simple supplies to keep your banger in top shape: clean cotton swabs and ISO (isopropyl alcohol). Of course, there are more advanced products and accessories (such as ISO pumps and cleaning stations) but for now we’ll stick to the basics. Now that you’ve gathered your supplies, here’s a step-by-step look at how to Q-Tip your banger. 

Steps for Q-tipping your Banger

  • Take a dab. Remember that low temp dabs do not burn off as many cannabinoids as high temp dabs and make for a smoother and more flavorful hit. Low temp dabs also help extend the life of your banger
  • Let your banger cool long enough so that the puddle is solid but can still be lifted away, which takes about 30 seconds to a minute
  • Take a cotton swab and use it to absorb/remove the residue. Don’t forget to pay attention to the corners and the creases
  • Dip the other side of the cotton swab in isopropyl alcohol (ISO) and use it to wipe away any extra residue and clean the banger
  • Using a dry cotton swab, wipe off any extra alcohol (you can also wait for the ISO to evaporate)
  • Repeat after each dab

Cotton swabs can be found pretty much anywhere, but isopropyl alcohol has become a little trickier to find given some supply chain constraints due to COVID-19. However, players in the cannabis industry have repeatedly proven themselves to be innovative in meeting consumer demand, and at least one company has created ISO-Snaps. These cotton swabs are preloaded with ISO in the swab’s shaft. By snapping the swab, ISO is released into the shaft for one-step Q-Tip tech, making it uber convenient, especially when on the go.

Alternatives to Q-tips and Cotton Swabs

As simple as it is to clean your banger with a cotton swab, they do carry some negative environmental ramifications. Our oceans are full of more than 5.25 trillion pieces of plastic from human waste which can kill marine life and carry pollutants to humans through ocean currents. Cotton swabs are among the tiniest of those pieces but they still have an impact because many brands use plastic for the rods instead of something biodegradable, like paper or wood.

The Humble Co.'s cotton swaps
The Humble Co. offers a great sustainable option for cotton swabs. photo credit

When picking a cotton swab to clean your banger, actual Q-Tips are among the better choices for the environment because they are made of sustainably sourced bonded paper that can be composted and eventually biodegrade. Another sustainable cotton swab option comes from the Humble Co. Featuring organic cotton tips and a rod made from bamboo, they are fair trade, biodegradable, and are packaged in recyclable paper. 

Dab nails do wear out over time. but by keeping your banger consistently clean, you’ll be able to prolong its life and have more flavorful experiences. And remember that it is possible to keep your bangers clean and make thoughtful choices that lessen your environmental impact. Just don’t put that cotton swab in your ear! It says not to right on the package.

Do you have any additional tips for Q-tipping your banger and keeping your quartz fresh? Share them in the comments below!


Erin Hiatt Erin Hiatt

Erin Hiatt is a New York City-based writer who has been covering the cannabis industry for more than six years. Her work - which has appeared in Hemp Connoisseur Magazine, PotGuide, Civilized, Vice, Freedom Leaf, MERRY JANE, Alternet, and CannaInvestor - covers a broad range of topics, including cannabis policy and law, CBD, hemp law and applications, science and technology, beauty, and psychedelics.

Erin's work and industry insights have been featured on the podcasts The Let's Go Eat Show, In the Know 420, and she has appeared as a featured panelist on the topic of hemp media. Erin has interviewed top industry experts such as Dr. Carl Hart, Ethan Nadelmann, Amanda Feilding, Mark A.R. Kleiman, Dr. James Fadiman, and culture icons Governor Jesse Ventura, and author Tom Robbins. You can follow her work on LinkedInWordpress, @erinhiatt on Twitter, and @erinisred on Instagram.

More From This Author

Related Articles