If you are like most consumers with an interest in cannabis, you have seen ‘CBD products’ popping up everywhere in recent years.
CBD, a non-psychoactive chemical in cannabis, seems to generate new studies every day claiming a new usage. It can be difficult for consumers to make sense of the products they find advertised online and at their local dispensary, and even more difficult to decide which is right for them.
With CBD suddenly being touted in food products and cosmetics, in the form of different oils, crystals, e-liquids and teas, it’s no surprise many are confused by it all. To help make sense of so many options, we’ve created a guide to some of the most common CBD products available.
How it’s made:
CBD-rich oil is a specific oil that contains CBD and doesn’t contain THC. CBD-rich oil is obtained via extraction made from cannabis flowers, most of the times from hemp strains rich in CBD. Then this extract can be mixed with hemp seed oil, olive oil or other types of oil to facilitate ingestion. These CBD-rich oil products are non-psychoactive.
NOTE: It is important to know the difference between CBD oil and Hemp seed oil.
Hemp seed oil is a hemp extract taken from the seeds of the plant. Industrial hemp is the only plant used for this type of hemp oil. The seeds of the hemp plant can be cold pressed, peeled or unpeeled (preferably cold), to create a delicious oil. There are no cannabinoids such as THC or CBD present in the oil since hemp seeds are not psychoactive. Hemp oil is legal in most countries and can be found in food markets, together with more common types of oil, like olive oil.
CBD-rich oil can be consumed in many ways. Users looking for the strongest effect from the oil can take it directly by placing a drop on or under the tongue so the oil is absorbed through the mouth and digestive tract. Others who want to enjoy the experience of consumption may choose to add a drop of oil to cooking or baked goods or dissolve a drop in their smoothie or tea.
Hemp seed oil can be found in food markets, together with more common types of oil, like olive oil. Hemp seed oil is known for its great taste and for its high values of unsaturated fats, such as Omega 3 and Omega 6. It can be used in many different applications such as Lotions or soaps, a base for plastics, instead of petroleum and eco-friendly paints.
How they’re made:
After hemp oil is removed from the plant, it can be further refined to isolate only CBD. To isolate pure CBD crystals, extracted hemp oil is put through a ‘winterisation’ process- or slowly heated to remove fats and lipids. Then, a machine called a rotary evaporator is used to remove any remaining plant traces. The final product is decarboxylated through another meticulous heating process to activate the cannabinoids, making chemicals bioavailable for consumers.
How you use it:
CBD crystals give consumers more versatility than oil. Like hemp oil, they can be added to foods, dissolved in drinks or swallowed whole, but unlike oil, crystals can also be ‘dabbed’ like cannabis concentrates (a manual vaporization method) made into an e-liquid, or sprinkled over a cigarette or joint.
Pros and cons:
Because crystals are more highly concentrated than other forms of CBD—up to 99.8% in some cases, they produce a more immediate effect than other methods of consuming it. On the downside, isolating only one cannabinoid removes a variety of terpenes from the final product.
How it’s made:
CBD tea is made simply by drying the leaves and buds of CBD-rich hemp plants. Like other cannabinoids, CBD extracts from the plant and binds to fats during any heating process. To get the best effect the tea should be brewed for several minutes with some type of fat like milk, cream, or coconut oil. Without fat included in brewing, users will only get the benefits of antioxidants, fatty acids and the tea’s sweet, subtle flavor rather than active cannabinoids.
How to use it:
To get the full flavor of hemp tea, brew tea in hot water with milk, cream or coconut oil for 5 minutes or more. Dried hemp tea leaves can also be used as a replacement for loose rolling tobacco when making cigarettes or joints.
Pros and cons:
Because raw dried hemp leaves have not gone through processes to activate the chemicals they contain, the cannabinoids in hemp tea are less ‘bioavailable’, meaning the user will feel a much weaker overall effect compared to other methods.
Methods of ingestion are entirely up to the user’s preference. Different methods could have different effects on one person to another based on their personal taste.
For users looking for an easy use, we recommend our wide range of CBD e-liquids, which are available in different strengths to suit your needs. For consumers looking for the highest-impact product available, pure CBD crystals may be the best option. For those simply wanting to explore the use of CBD in their normal diet, hemp oil may have the best overall benefits. CBD tea is best suited for consumers who simply want a flavourful tea.
How it’s made:
CBD e-liquids are CBD products designed for use in e-cigarettes or vaporisers. Many manufacturers start with pure CBD crystals in order to precisely measure the CBD dosage, combining them with vegetable glycerin and propylene glycol. High-quality e-liquid producers (like Harmony!) also add terpenes, (aromatic compounds from the cannabis plant) back into the e-liquid at the end of the process to enhance flavour. Wonder what it tastes like? Our Cannabis Originals E-Liquids were created with Cannabis terpenes, it’s the key ingredient behind the success of our Cannabis E Liquids! It makes our OG Kush, Super Lemon Haze and Mango Kush flavours, the most authentic on the market.
CBD e-liquids can be used in place of nicotine e-liquids in any standard e-cigarette or portable vaporiser. Simply add the e-liquid to the tank of your vape and follow the device’s instructions to inhale the vapour. Prepared e-liquid cartridges are also available for e-cigarette models that don’t allow for manual refills.
Pros and cons:
E-cigarettes have become a huge trend. They are convenient and discreet when travelling and allow users to ‘vape’ in places where they were previously not allowed to smoke, like inside public buildings or at the office. Dosages in this form can vary, producers often offer different strengths of CBD e-liquids for different user preferences. This is the most affordable, direct and convenient option for a majority of consumers.