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What Does Weed Smell Like? The Most Common Cannabis Scents

Weed’s odor serves as a primary weapon, notifying passers-by of its existence. So, what does weed smell like? Do strains have different scents?

Before and after smoking, weed has a distinct odor, similar to the smell of a skunk with herbal notes. A few crucial components might help you distinguish this fragrance if you haven’t explored it previously.

This article will discuss the weed smell in detail. Let’s read on to discover!

What Causes Weed To Smell?

Many consumers ponder the leaves in search of all of the weed’s benefits. The terpenes, on the other hand, are responsible for the smell.

Terpenes are primarily present in the plant’s flowers, not its leaves. The glittering pieces of fairy dust that cover the buds are trichomes. They’re where most terpenes are found.

The odor profile of such terpenes might reveal a lot about the pleasure and medicinal benefits that the strain will provide.

Different terpene ratios create various scent profiles, which might impact weed users’ tastes. There are as many as 66 distinct terpenes in certain cannabis strains.

What Causes Weed To Smell
Terpenes cause the weed to smell

What Does Weed Smell Like?

Weed releases different smells in different stages. Let’s discuss its smell in some instances as follows.

In plants

The smell of cannabis varies based on how mature the cannabis plant is. Premature plants have a weaker smell. If treated properly, there may be no smell at all. The odor of mature plants will be heavier.

Depending on the plant species, the plant might smell woody, earthy, or flowery with hints of skunk and pine. 

Weather is another factor that affects the smell. With heat amplifying the smell, you may detect even more in hot climates.

In bags

The weed smell varies in strain. Generally, weed in a bag may smell like a mix of musky, skunk, earthy, woody, or pine aromas, with one odor dominating. If you store the weed frequently in airtight bags, the smell may decrease significantly.

When smoked

Cannabis can smell like the core component of the strain when being consumed.

On the other hand, smoking brings extra layers to the stench, such as smoke, fire, and a harsher skunk smell. Some strains have sweet aromas. Some have musky, earthy, or herbal aromas.

The amount of weed you smoke also contributes to the whole odor. The aroma can be intense enough to scent up the space or even the entire apartment. 

When someone smokes in an automobile, the smell can seep into the upholstery and be hard to hide or remove.

Weed smells when smoked

After being smoked

The difference in the smell of weed before and after smoking is minor. It’s particularly true if smoke settles on your garments, sheets, carpets, or any other material that traps odors.

The main strain characteristics combine with a skunky smell, according to most consumers. For example, if your strain features many lemon tones, it may smell slightly like skunk and lemon after you smoke.

What Smells Like Weed?

Many living creatures smell like weed. Here are some things that you think you are smelling the weed:

  • Skunk cabbage: This plant smells like the weed in its flowering stage. You can come across the plant in the forests.

  • Skunk: Skunk-like odor is the most popular smell you may notice in cannabis. Some of the stinkiest weed strains are Master Kush, Uncle Andy, and Chronic. In general, skunk doesn’t have herb undertones.

  • Hoppy beer: Weed and hops have some relevance in their genes. As a result, they have a similar odor.

  • Moss phlox: The scent of this flower is so close to weed. It may get other’s attention while you are smoking.

  • Spider flower: This flower has lemony, musky, and maybe skunky, which resembles the smell of cannabis leaves.

What Does Hashish Smell Like?

Hashish is a distilled concentrated version of weed. CBD concentrations are often greater in the hash, whereas THC levels are typically lower. CBD lacks the same potency as cannabis or THC in terms of producing euphoria or enjoyment.

It comes from the marijuana plant’s crushed resin. Hashish vapor has an earthy aroma with overtones of flames and ashes, similar to cannabis smoke.

When Does Marijuana Start To Smell?

Cannabis plants begin to release their smell during the vegetative phase. The leaves also have an odor to them, but it’s different from the odor of the blooms. Weed leaves may smell weedy, and blossoms smell a lot more flowery.

When Does Marijuana Start To Smell
Cannabis plants begin to release their smell during the vegetative phase

When the plants break through the soil surface, they can’t have the smell of dank weed. The first symptoms will show up after week three of vegging.

The plant’s scent will become considerably more aromatic when preflowers form around the stems. Even while it isn’t as strong as later, you can detect some signs from these little preflowers.

The scent will get heavier as the plant forms its blooms. They have a distinct smell throughout their blooming period, which will increase as buds develop.

The formation of trichomes is also part of the flowering phase. The blooms will be most fragrant when more of them emerge when the plant hits the height of its blooming cycle.

What Does Synthetic Weed Smell Like?

Synthetic marijuana is a product of a lab experiment. They come with other chemicals to form a new mixture. The researchers spray the chemicals over plant-like material.

This synthetic weed is irrelevant to the marijuana plant. It may contain any form of chemicals. As a result, synthetic weed has no dominant smell. There is also no typical smell for this kind of weed.

What Does Synthetic Weed Smell Like
Synthetic weed doesn’t have any standard odor

The Most Common Cannabis Scents

Spicy, woody, lemony, musky, and tropical are common words used to characterize cannabis smell. The terpene compositions of marijuana strains seem to coincide with these aromas.

The following are some of the most prevalent terpenes identified in marijuana:

  • Myrcene: musky, earthy, herbal
  • B-caryophyllene: peppery, woodsy
  • A-humulene: spicy with earthy undertones
  • A-pinene: basil, rosemary, pine needles
  • Limonene: citrus with lemon tones
  • Linalool: floral

Thiol is another noticeable scent in decent weed. It originates from the cannabis plant naturally. Natural gas, garlic, onions, skunk spray, and rotten eggs all contain these unpleasant chemicals. Because thiols are efficient antioxidants, the weed that stinks like a skunk is a good sign.

What Does The Scent Reveal About The Strain?

The terpene concentrations of strains vary. The odor might provide minor clues about the strain’s characteristics. 

Although cannabinoids have a powerful effect on the body and mind, terpenes are also accountable for some weed impacts. For example, limonene, which can improve mood while reducing anxiety, is more likely to appear in zesty marijuana.

While the scent of new weed might suggest maturation or purity, it can also indicate bacteria or mold formation. If the cannabis stashes aren’t dry enough, the moisture may create the ideal breeding environment for germs.

If your cannabis smells like a stuffy wardrobe, urine, or a damp locker, there may be some mold inside. In general, the odor of moldy weed is terrible. You will have a bad batch in your palms when a whiff of the cannabis makes you cringe.

It would help if you didn’t smoke the moldy weed because there would be a high chance to inhale fungal spores straight into your lungs, causing infection.

Which Way Of Smoking Smells The Least?

If you choose to consume genuine blossom rather than synthetic cannabis, you’re probably familiar with weed’s strong odor.

While you may find it singularly enjoyable, the recognizable fragrance can quickly raise unwelcome attention and even put you in legal jeopardy.

Here are some tips to minimize the smell from your weed: 


Vaporizer devices gradually heat weed to just under the combustion temperature, producing a gentle vapor to swallow. The vapor distributes cannabinoids straight to the mind in a couple of seconds, much like smoking with no smoke or lasting odor.

Vaping helps consume weed with no smell

Smell-resistant storage

Because of the burning of plant components, the organic fragrance of cannabis may rise when consumed. However, the heavy, earthy smell of cannabis leaves remains in storage. Keeping your stuff in an airtight container can help you keep curious nostrils away.

Well-ventilated spot

When possible, smoke outside so that the smoke may immediately evaporate rather than staying and invading your garments. If this method isn’t feasible, choose a well-ventilated position near a door where the smoke may quickly exit.

The approach can help clear the air of cannabis smoke and get rid of the remnants from the body.


Some consumers enjoy the smell of weed, whereas others can’t bear it. It’s definitely cannabis if you smell anything slightly evocative of a skunk combined with herbs, flowery, or lemon overtones but without the characteristic skunk sulfur aroma.

Hopefully, you will find this article helpful. If you need any further information, please feel free to ask. Thank you for your interest in the article!

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