Unflavored hemp oil has a strong grassy and earthy taste. Some people enjoy the taste of natural hemp, but it’s not particularly popular. If a shot of wheatgrass sounds like a terrible idea, you’ll probably want to gravitate toward something with a more…palatable flavor. If you’re not sure, you can always start with a simple flavor you know you’ll enjoy, like mint or lemon, and get more adventurous over time.
What exactly is cannabidiol (CBD) and more importantly, what does it do? Those questions and more are at the heart of this comprehensive guide to one of the most fascinating and important compounds of the cannabis plant. Cannabis plants are chemical powerhouses that produce more than 400 different compounds. Not all of those compounds are unique to marijuana, of course, and appear in many other species of plants. That’s why marijuana can smell like pine trees or taste like fresh lemons. But of those 400 compounds, more than 60 of them are totally specific to the plant genus Cannabis. Scientists call these special compounds “cannabinoids.” However, not all cannabinoids are created equal. One of them, cannabidiol, or CBD, holds the key to the wide variety of medicinal and therapeutic effects marijuana offers.
Another point worth clarifying is the difference between hemp seed oil (or hemp oil) and CBD oil. There’s confusion on this point for the very good reason that both CBD oil and hemp seed oil are extracted from the industrial hemp plant. But there’s a big difference between the 2. Hemp seed oil has been pressed from hemp seed, and it’s great for a lot of things — it’s good for you, tastes great, and can be used in soap, paint — even as biodiesel fuel.
Most products labeled “hemp oil” do not contain any CBD. Those are typically hemp seed oil which is more commonly used for cooking or to make salad dressing. If you want to buy CBD oil, you’ll want to look for products that are labeled “CBD oil” or “hemp extract.” To confirm that a product you’re interested in has CBD in it, you’ll want to look at their third-party lab reports. All reputable companies selling CBD oil products will make third-party lab reports available to you to confirm the presence of CBD.
Transparency: Moon Mother sends each batch of product to a third-party lab to be tested for potency as well as other contaminants. You can find all of these lab reports on the company’s website. They also added more information about their company processes to the website, so it’s easier to find important information about extraction and manufacturing.
NuLeaf only offers one concentration of CBD oil, 50 mg/ml, and the ingredients are as simple as it gets: USDA Certified organic hemp oil and full spectrum hemp extract. NuLeaf essentially has only one product. But this strategy allows them to keep their prices reasonable and offer bulk buying options—you can buy a bottle of NuLeaf CBD oil containing 240 mg total CBD all the way up to 4,850 mg.
Being more a traditional gal, it’s kind of funny that I like Hemp Bombs CBD so much. Judging by their Instagram and so forth it seems like they’ve made an effort to appeal to a younger, more “hip” crowd, but I don’t care – they sell some darn good CBD products and that’s the only thing that matters to me. And actually, if you’re into vaping CBD oil or prefer to use a CBD vape pen, they’re definitely the company that I would recommend the most. I’m not huge into vaping myself, but they’ve got a MASSIVE range of high-quality (and highly potent) CBD vape products in addition to the standard stuff like oral tinctures and CBD capsules. My partner has even used the “Sugar Cookie Kryptonite” vape liquid and absolutely loved it! Really, you’ve got to just spend some time browsing their store to come to terms with the huge range of products they’ve got: CBD “Pain Freeze,” CBD “Max Chill Shots,” and even a brand new product called CBD Beard Oil!!
Infinite CBD specializes in CBD isolate, meaning CBD oils that are not full-spectrum and do not contain the full range of hemp extract. As such, I have hardly used them at all because I generally always prefer full-spectrum CBD tinctures. That being said, if you’re looking for isolate I would venture to say that Infinite CBD is the best CBD isolate oil on the market right now, hands down. If you need to avoid full-spectrum oils for drug testing purposes, definitely give them a try.
Quality CBD oil comes from a quality source. CBD oil can be extracted from the hemp plant in a variety of ways. The safest, and most efficient methods, use carbon dioxide or ethanol as a solvent to separate the CBD from the hemp plant. All of the tinctures below are extracted from pesticide-free hemp grown on local farms in the United States, all of which are registered with their state’s industrial hemp pilot program, or organic-certified farms in Europe.
That same 2018 Farm Bill means you can now travel between states with legit CBD products. "Flying with CBD should pose no issues now," Parrish says. However, if you're traveling with a tincture, be mindful of TSA limits on how much liquid you can carry on an airplane, she adds. (You can also mail CBD products, just like "companies that comply with the Bill can ship their hemp-derived CBD products anywhere in the U.S.," Parrish notes.)
Other CBD oil stores have high-quality products, but our choice came down to variety, potency, and price. Whichever you choose to go for, though, know that all of the companies above have an outstanding store and offer a wide range of effective products, from CBD oils to Terps and even CBD creams. Plus, most have a 100% money-back guarantee policy, which is quite nice!
A newcomer to our CBD oils ranking, RE: Botanicals is no stranger to hemp. Founded by John Roulac, a long-time hemp advocate and founder of the organic superfoods brand Nutiva, RE: Botanicals is one of the only CBD brands to earn the USDA organic seal. They deserve a shout-out for prioritizing regenerative agriculture, while keeping prices reasonable.
Along with PureKana and Premium Jane, MedTerra CBD is one of the few companies that has a commercialization agreement with hemp farms under the Kentucky Pilot Research Program. My partner and I really like this brand because it’s clear that they’re much more focused on health and science rather than creating gimmicky promotions and web advertisements to try and build their “brand.” The CBD industry definitely needs more companies with this mentality. We haven’t tried them a whole lot, but we did receive a couple of samples of their “Medoil Tinctures,” and they worked particularly well for my partner’s anxiety and sleep issues. They also were OK for my back pain, but not quite as potent as some other brands I’ve used.
This is why Amanda Oliver, 31, a career consultant in Charleston, SC, pops a CBD gummy bear each night before bed. “I used to lie there tossing and turning as my mind raced from work projects to whether I had set the home alarm,” Oliver says. One piece of candy with 15 milligrams (mg) of CBD is enough to shut off her brain and facilitate sleep. She also swears by the CBD oil she takes at the height of her period, which she says quells her debilitating cramps.
Elixinol has a wide range of products, but their CBD Tincture does the trick. It’s the cream of the crop regarding CBD oils and that reflects in its price. One dropper (1mg) from the 300 series contains 10mg of CBD. This allows you to get precise amounts of CBD and no guess work is required. Elixinol has received numerous awards for their products and extraction process.
Although CBD oils aren’t regulated by the FDA, purchasing products stateside from one of the nine states where recreational and medical cannabis use is legal will likely result in a higher-quality product than buying one made with hemp-derived CBD oil imported from abroad, says Martin Lee, director of Project CBD, a nonprofit that promotes medical research into CBD.
Drops (also referred to as tinctures) are the most popular way to take CBD oil. They are typically sold in glass bottles with a built-in dropper. The drops are placed under your tongue and held there for at least 60 seconds. This drop process allows the CBD to absorb sublingually into your bloodstream. Other popular ways to take CBD include vaping, gummies, capsules, and topical creams. How you take it is a personal decision based on your preferences. Many experienced users take multiple different products at the same time.
There are many reputable brands on the market and American Shaman is certainly one of them. It’s understandably confusing because as you said, pretty much every company will say that theirs is the best. The approach that you are taking is very common…trying several different brands until you find the one that works best for you. It’s also great that you can take advantage of the assistance programs that many brands offer to help you reduce your cost. One final thing to note that is often overlooked by folks is the importance of finding your “sweet spot” serving size or dosage level. Contrary to what some people assume, the amount that you take for best results is different by individual. People tell us that they have the most success by starting low and increasing slowly as needed until they find that sweet spot. CBD oil also doesn’t work immediately for most people. It can take some time to build up and activate your endocannabinoid receptors so patience is also important. Best of luck to you on your CBD journey!
*[A couple things of note before I begin the reviews. In order to avoid redundancy and limit repeating myself dozens of times over, be advised that (unless otherwise noted), all of the companies listed below employ standard practices that are used by all of the best CBD oil companies, including things like: solventless CO2 extraction, 3rd party laboratory testing, legal THC limits below 0.3%, shipping to all 50 U.S. states, etc..]
Historically, hemp could legally be grown and cultivated for academic research purposes only. However, the legality of hemp growth has changed in the past year. In April 2018, Sen. Mitch McConnell of Kentucky introduced the Hemp Farming Act of 2018, a piece of legislation that proposed legalizing all hemp products at the federal level. The act was incorporated in the 2018 United States Farm Bill, which passed in both the House and Senate in December 2018. Per the farm bill, industrial hemp will be descheduled as a federally controlled substance.