The decision to try CBD oil is an easy one. You hear something appealing about CBD and become curious about trying CBD for the first time. But choosing a CBD product to start with or refine your search after trying whatever your nearest seller has to offer is so much more complicated. CBD is marketed in literally dozens of different ways. Not only is there a difference between tinctures, edibles, topicals, and cooking oil, but there are also very different sources of CBD oil that should be understood before you can make a truly informed decision.
There are three essential variants of CBD oil.
The Three Types of CBD Oil
- Full Spectrum CBD Oil
- Broad Spectrum CBD Oil
- CBD Isolate
Full Spectrum CBD Oil
Let’s start with the least filtered type of CBD. Full-spectrum CBD is unfiltered oil extracted from the hemp plant, including all the compounds that come naturally in the hemp plant, of which CBD is the most powerful.
The hemp plant contains over a hundred different compounds called cannabinoids and terpenes that interact pleasantly with the endocannabinoid system in the body. CBD and THC are among those. CBD is the strongest, with trace amounts of the other cannabinoids and terpenes, including 0.3% THC or less. These additional cannabinoids enhance the effects of CBD, which is called the entourage effect.
Products made with full-spectrum CBD oil comes with the benefit of all the additional cannabinoids, including trace amounts of THC.
Broad Spectrum CBD Oil
Broad-spectrum CBD oil starts as full-spectrum, but it’s been filtered to remove the THC. This CBD oil is for states where THC is illegal and for people who don’t want to risk taking any THC with their CBD products. The filtration process also removes some of the other cannabinoids and terpenes in the process. It still has the entourage effect of the remaining cannabinoids, which support the CBD content, but the entourage is not as complete.
Products made with broad-spectrum CBD oil have no THC but enjoy the beneficial effects of the remaining supportive cannabinoids and terpenes.
If you want to try pure CBD oil without any extra cannabinoids or terpenes, then CBD isolate is the way to go. CBD isolate is refined so that only the CBD compound, cannabidiol, remains. CBD oil that is marketed as CBD isolate is pure hemp oil with nothing but CBD left. No cannabinoids, no terpenes, and no THC. CBD isolate tends to be slightly more expensive because of the extensive refining process. Still, it is also the best way to find out exactly how your body responds to CBD without any other compounds in the mix.
Products made with CBD isolate feature pure CBD and the ingredients that make up the product itself.
Hemp Agricultural Practices and Lab Testing
Many people who try CBD are concerned with how the hemp used to extract the oil is grown and sourced. Manufacturing is a reasonable concern, as you need to know if there’s a risk of being exposed to pesticides and other agricultural toxins if the hemp is not grown and processed safely. It is crucial to buy from CBD brands that have third-party lab results.
The lab results are there to prove three things.
- The hemp is toxin-free
- The products are full/broad/isolate as advertised
- The percentage of CBD in each product
If you choose to care about hemp agricultural practices, you can look up the lab tests provided by each brand on their website, which can help you narrow down the brand you want to buy.
CBD Oil vs Hemp Oil
If you see something with a big green leaf advertised as ‘hemp oil,’ it’s not necessarily a CBD product. As you may have guessed, it is derived from cold-pressing hemp seeds. CBD oil is derived from the stems and leaves. There is no CBD in hemp seed oil, is sold at a lower price than CBD oil, and is often used as a skincare product. CBD oil, on the other hand, features a high percentage of CBD, but some CBD brands use the term ‘hemp oil.’
How can you tell the difference? If a product says ‘hemp oil,’ check the CBD percentage and compare it to other products of a similar price.
Types of CBD Oil Product
The final difference between CBD Oil products is the products themselves. These are the most natural differences to determine without internet research. We’ll cover the five most common types of CBD products, with the understanding that there are dozens of small experimental variations you may find from one brand or another as well.
The 5 Types of CBD Oil Products:
- Cooking Oil
A tincture is CBD oil in a dropper bottle. One to three drops under your tongue will absorb into your mucous membrane under your tongue. The CBD enters your bloodstream very quickly, and you will feel the effects within 15 minutes. They are often flavored, but the flavor is entirely optional.
Capsules are gel capsules, taken the same way as other vitamins and supplements sold in gel capsules. If you have ever made fish oil or Vitamin E oil capsules, these are packaged and taken in the same way. The CBD oil is often combined with hemp oil or coconut oil, while other CBD capsules have ground hemp that digests when the gel dissolves instead. CBD pills can take up upwards of an hour to break down the pill and absorb it through your digestive system.
Edibles are CBD taken through snacks and food. The most common type of edible is gummies, usually gummy bears. The second most common are chocolate or mint snacks. But edibles can come in every kind of food. The CBD may be a layered ingredient or added to the cooking. There are CBD baked goods, candies, even savory meal items. CBD absorbs between 30 minutes to an hour through your digestive system.
Topicals are creams and ointments with CBD as an ingredient that applies to your skin. The CBD absorbs through your skin, and the effects are local rather than affecting your whole body like tinctures, edibles, and topicals. The amount of CBD you feel depends on the concentration of CBD in your topical. Depending on what you’re trying to do, the other ingredients in the topical will matter like moisturizers, aloe, and vitamin E.
Finally, there’s cooking oil. Cooking oil can be considered an edible, but it’s not meant to be taken straight by itself. CBD cooking oil is often CBD diluted into coconut oil or hemp seed oil. It allows you to make your edibles at home. Do not heat your CBD cooking oil above 325 degrees, so only bake at low temperatures or add at the end. Many people, for example, make cupcakes and mix their CBD cooking oil into the icing.
So are all CBD oil products the same? No. There are so many differences, and the right product for you will be determined by the difference in CBD percentage in the product, the difference between spectrum and isolate, and the way you take your CBD. Contact us to learn more about CBD and start your journey to finding the CBD product that is best for you.