Innovating Privacy and Sustainability with Smokebuddy
There’s no question that society has come to accept cannabis more widely over the last decade—and exponentially so. But we’re not out of the woods yet. It’s still illegal at the federal level, as well as multiple states around the country. Even where prohibition has been thankfully repealed, the pungent odor the plant emits can still land you in hot water in the wrong set and setting. Greg Gorski recognized an opportunity within this ongoing dilemma, choosing to address it not with temporary fixes like ‘sploofs,’ but through innovative design coupled with an eco-friendly approach.
The inception of Smokebuddy was about more than just creating an air filter; it was crafting a personal experience centered around privacy. When users exhale into this gadget, they’re making a commitment to discretion, bringing the exercise of their right to privacy to a new level.
The innovation goes beyond just masking odors. Gorski, with his finger on the pulse of functionality, ensured that the Smokebuddy wouldn’t be a garden-variety smoking accessory. The inner workings boast an Activated Carbon core, paired with Ceramic Bead technology, skillfully eliminating contaminants and neutralizing scents from smoke. The device sidesteps the need for batteries, replaceable filters, and unnecessary downloads or assembly.
“We’re all about quality,” Gorski points out. “Even if the changes we make aren’t something the user would notice because it’s all on the inside, every step we take is meant to make the Smokebuddy work even better.”
In terms of aesthetics and functionality, Smokebuddy offers a spectrum of colors and designs across three sizes: the compact Junior, akin to a flask-sized pack of playing cards; the best-selling Original, characterized by its cylindrical, easy-to-hold shape reminiscent of a soda can; and the robust Mega, mirroring the Junior’s sleek profile but offering double the capacity, efficiently serving up to 600 uses.
The clarity in packaging subtly highlights Gorski’s background in advertising, teasing a glimpse of the product’s allure, and hinting at the experience awaiting the user. And the cherry on top? A whimsical Buddy keychain, connecting users to the larger Smokebuddy family.
What truly elevates the brand, alongside its sleek style and practical functionality, is its positive and proactive commitment to the environment. This aligns with a growing consumer trend. A 2020 survey by IBM and the National Retail Federation revealed that nearly 70% of consumers in the U.S. and Canada prioritize companies that are sustainable and environmentally responsible.
The Smokebuddy personal air filter is crafted from eco-friendly bioplastics that break down naturally. Instead of using oil-based plastics, it’s made from stuff like straw, wood chips, corn sugar, potatoes, and hemp. It’s compostable and biodegradable, which means it won’t just sit in a landfill forever. The Smokebuddy Eco, made from wheat-based plastic that’s recyclable and compostable, further underscores their commitment to sustainability, while the new all-paper Smokebuddy doubles down and all-out demands our attention to the state of our planet as they lead by example. It’s just as effective at filtering smoke and odor, but with an even greener approach, from the product to the packaging.
As Gorski emphasizes, “We can’t do anything about what the customer ends up doing with their Smokebuddy after it is expired — what we can do is control the manufacturing side and use materials that are more eco-friendly on the production side.”
Gorski doesn’t really like to talk numbers, but since launching in 2008, Smokebuddy has unquestionably become a staple of smoke shops across the continent—and has racked up more than 42K followers on Instagram.
As common sense as it sounds, customers want products to function the way they need in order to solve their problem or desire. The SmokeBuddy does just that. And Gorski says that’s exactly why it has taken off the way it did. “Now that we’re leading the pack, it’s on us to keep making top-notch products that are priced right, exceed customer expectation, and keeping the buzz going.”