The Argileh
Project (TAP)

A circular strategy to eliminate waste from the argileh industry


The Challenge

How might we eliminate waste from the argileh industry by creating a zero waste alternative and maintaining the same user experience?

Discovering that 440 million single use argileh hoses are used every year in the Arab World. I wanted to find a more sustainable alternative.

The Outcome

TAP is a circular, subscription based model for argileh cafes that replaces the traditional argileh with cradle to cradle designed vapes. This eliminates waste, is cheaper to adopt and proves that the circular economy is both cheaper and better.


Shams El Balad


Entire project A-Z

single use plastic argileh hoses are used in the Arab World every single year.

The Argileh Project is a subscription based service that provides cafes with zero waste argileh vapes.

Designed to cradle to cradle principles, they are easy to repair, upgrade and in the worst case, infinitely recyclable.

TAP is more affordable than what cafes pay now per month.

Research shows that people want the
same experience and especially the
same design language.

TAP Part 2

Products made of single use argileh hose plastic.

As part of the project, I collected a lot of plastic pipes so collaborated with different designers and organisations to create a range of products made out of the used plastic.

Go to Research process
Step 1

How might we eliminate plastic from the argeileh industry?

TAP started when my brother-in-law and I were sitting in an argeileh cafe and he posed the question, “how many diposable hoses do you think are used in Jordan per day?”

This question consumed me and no one has done this research before, so I went to my local cafe and collected pipes from them for a month.

This amounted to about 1300 hoses. Multiplied by the number of cafes (~700) based off of official government statistics and the number is about
11 million hoses used in Jordan alone per year.

Step 2

Understanding costs associated with the industry

Next, I visited some hose factories, and spoke to cafes and smokers to understand the costs of everything. This is what I discovered:

Major Insights

Hoses are sold at $0.10 making the price very difficult to beat with a direct replacement.

Recurring monthly argeileh costs for cafes are $1860 - making this cheaper would be easier.

Government mandates made single use the norm to reduce the spread of tuberculosis.

Most smokers don’t care about the environment - they want the smoking experience to be the same.

Sample of a cafe’s monthly costs - all items needed are hazardous to the environment.

How might we eliminate waste from the argeileh industry by creating a zero waste alternative and maintain the same user experience?

Step 3

Finding solutions that fit the above criteria

Concepts that I was playing with at first incude:A biodegradable hose (too costly)

A sanitation device for long-lasting hoses
(requires more effort to maintain)
Vapes were the most feasible as they eliminated all other wastes, are gaining in popularity and could easily be redesigned to circular economy principles.

After testing a works like protoype, smokers wanted a design that was more traditional.

Upfront costs would be prohibitively expensive, so a 30% cheaper circular economy model was developed.

Go to final outcome