If you haven’t been bombarded with CBD marketing or raves about it from friends, get ready. This extract—which comes from either marijuana or its industrial cousin, hemp—is popping up everywhere. There are CBD capsules, tinctures, and liquids for vaping plus CBD-infused lotions, beauty products, snacks, coffee, and even vaginal suppositories. Already some 1,000 brands of CBD products are available in stores—and online in states that don’t have lenient cannabis laws. This is a tiny fraction of what’s to come: The CBD market is poised to exceed $22 billion by 2022, per the Chicago-based research firm Brightfield Group.
To obtain the CBD-packed hemp extract from its organic crop, Highland Pharms uses a process called “supercritical CO2 extraction.” This method eliminates the need for more harmful solvents, while it also, the company says, yields CBD oil of an outstanding purity and efficacy. Those wanting to see for themselves can take their pick from Highland Pharms’ positively reviewed variety of tinctures – the strongest concentration of which measures up at 1,250 mg – as well as capsules and edibles. And if those potential customers have no idea exactly how much CBD they should be imbibing, then they can get themselves up to speed at the Texas-based company’s website, which offers a user-friendly guide to serving sizes and methods of CBD oil intake, among other common queries.
There are many scammers and multi-level marketing salespeople that use Facebook and other social media outlets to push a particular product. Many of them will tell you whatever you want to hear to get you to buy from them. Be wary of their claims and testimonials. It’s particularly important to buy CBD oil from a brand that makes third party lab reports readily available. This third party certification is the only way for you to truly know what is in the product.
Owned by CV Sciences, PlusCBD Oil applies experience from the pharmaceutical industry to CBD. The company’s mission: optimize human health with the endless potential of hemp. Using state of the art production facilities and the guidance of a scientific advisory board, PlusCBD Oil is another high-quality purveyor of CBD oil that really takes CBD seriously.
Transparency: cbdMD seems to be going through a transition with their third-party testing practices. Until recently, they only released a lab report for the CBD concentrate they use for all their products, but would not show potency testing for individual products. That seems to be changing. Currently, the only lab report on the website is for their concentrate (and it’s over a year old). But if you contact customer service, they’ll send you a lab report for any product.
Brian Peterson has been a CBD consumer advocate and educator since 2013. He is the founder and managing editor of the CBDOilUsers.com website. He's also the lead administrator of the CBD Oil Users Group, the largest CBD group on Facebook. His passion is educating consumers so that they can make their own decisions when purchasing and using CBD products.
CBD Infusionz ticks off all of the things you want to see in the best CBD oil, but my favorite thing about them is they include an updated lab report in the packaging of every product that they ship. With other brands, you’ve got to go digging through the website to view the reports, and usually they’re well outdated. Also, CBD Infusionz is a brand that puts a lot of R&D into coming up with fun, new, and unique CBD products, and I legitimately appreciate that. They’ve got stuff like hemp joints (that you can actually smoke like a regular joint), CBD chewing gum, CBD lozenges, and a variety of candies, healthy vegan edibles, pet products, and topical lotions. In fact, you’ve just got to check out their website in order to see for yourself all of the various CBD goodies they’ve got on offer.
*[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..]
Cannabidiol (CBD), a non-psychoactive segment of the marijuana plant, has created huge enthusiasm among researchers and physicians. CBD Oil applies its remedial effect on an atomic level is as yet being sorted out. Cannabidiol is a pleiotropic sedate in that it produces numerous impacts through various atomic pathways. CBD Oil acts through different receptor-free channels and by official with various non-cannabinoid receptors and particle channels.
To make matters more confusing, nine states (including California, Washington, and Colorado) let residents buy cannabis-based products with or without THC. Nearly two dozen other “medical marijuana states” allow the sale of cannabis, including capsules, tinctures, and other items containing CBD or THC, at licensed dispensaries to people whose doctors have certified that they have an approved condition (the list varies by state but includes chronic pain, PTSD, cancer, autism, Crohn’s disease, and multiple sclerosis). Sixteen more states legalized CBD for certain diseases.
Pregnant or breastfeeding women: Because researchers don’t want to put the mother or fetus in danger, clinical studies typically don’t include pregnant and breastfeeding women. As a result, physicians can’t definitively say whether or not CBD is safe for expecting and new mothers. Not enough research has been done. However, one study did find that CBD increased the permeability of the placental barrier, which could put the fetus at risk.
It’s fair to say that the CBD market is thriving. According to market intelligence company Hemp Business Journal, $130 million worth of products containing the cannabinoid were bought in the U.S. in 2016. And that figure is only set to rise in the years to come, the data analyst believes. Indeed, the source estimates that consumer sales of CBD goods will total an astounding $2.1 billion by 2020 – buoyed, perhaps, by claims that the usage of such products can help alleviate the symptoms of chronic pain, depression and diabetes, to name but a few conditions.
Hemp Bombs is based in Tampa, Florida, and in addition to focusing on the purity and therapeutic effectiveness of their products, are dedicated to establishing themselves as a top brand in the industry with a specific target audience. One of our personal favorite products of theirs is the flavored CBD vape liquids, which are some of the best-tasting CBD vape juices we’ve ever had.
Palmetto Harmony’s backstory is a poignant one, as founder Janel Ralph was spurred on to create the company to help her daughter Harmony, who suffers from an unusual genetic condition. However, according to the producer’s website, Harmony’s quality of life has greatly improved since she began taking CBD oil. And potential customers looking to see if their health could be changed for the better can select from Palmetto Harmony’s broad array of organic CBD oil-containing products, including the company’s flagship whole-plant extract and an unusual time-release patch. The brand’s Holy Cannacense cream, meanwhile, is among the most popular of its range; and also in demand is the acclaimed vape oil, which Palmetto Harmony claims “is best used to calm the mind and soothe inflammation.”
There’s no definite amount that’s appropriate for everyone, but the ratio of CBD to THC will indicate how psychoactive the product is and if it’s legal in your state. The more CBD compared with THC, the less of a high, and vice versa. “Managing psychoactivity is key to successful cannabis therapy,” says Lee. “Amounts should be made clear on the label and lab-certified so people know what’s helping them and what’s not.”
Terpenes are the naturally-occurring essential oils from plants, flowers, and vegetables. Terpenes are what give the plant its scent, flavor, and unique benefits. Some of the terpenes in cannabis are known for their useful therapeutic properties. For example, some terpenes are known for their anti-inflammatory, anti-anxiety, or relaxing properties to name a few.
Pure Hemp Botanicals’ mission statement is “compassion in action” – and it’s a pledge that it aims to adhere to not only through the use of organic hemp and cruelty-free ingredients, but also through its employment practices. The company’s “PHD Gives Back” initiative demonstrates a commitment to kindness, too, as 1 percent of proceeds from the sale of its products are donated to non-profit Mercy For Animals. Pure Hemp Botanicals’ range of CBD-containing goods is also varied, taking in as it does concentrates, vape oils and flavored mints and teas. And regular CBD oil users can, furthermore, take advantage of the company’s handy subscription system for tinctures, capsules and softgels – a scheme that’s not only convenient but which, thanks to the discounts available, offers a less costly way to get a CBD hit.
When I went into the CBD American Shaman store, the manager seemed extremely knowledgeable, was certified, spent quite a bit of time explaining the different aspects of their products. I bought the full spectrum VG Cloud Tincture in strawberry banana and the 250 Topical Cream, which he said I would be amazed how well it worked. Hmmm. Maybe not so much, at least not yet. And the oil hasn’t helped as much as I hoped. Because they have a “Compassionate Care” program for those with disabilities, I was hoping this would be the one. Most of our family suffers from chronic pain and has had to go on disability, much to their chagrin. The products are $59.95 each, and the discount would be something like 30 per cent.
Customer Service: We’ve always received fast, informative responses to our queries about products and practices, but there are definitely customers out there who have not. A quick perusal of reviews shows customers who had issues with unaddressed orders. It’s hard to know exactly what the problem is in these situations, but the company’s strict return policy (seven days for unopened products only) probably doesn’t help. It should be noted that the company has a solid base of very satisfied customers as well.
CBD may be best known for its relaxing, calming effects. CBD reduces autonomic arousal, having the inverse effect of THC on the body. CBD’s anti-anxiety effect is why many in the cannabis community talk about how CBD relieves paranoia, although that is not scientifically proven yet. CBD is also known for its anti-nausea and pain relieving effects. It really depends on why your body’s specific needs and the quantity in which you take CBD.
In fact, not only will CBD not make you high, it has been proven to counteract the psychoactivity of THC. This property makes CBD highly useful as a medical treatment for a wide range of conditions. In terms of the CBD products you can buy, the amount of THC present varies from none at all in a pure CBD Isolate to a minimal amount (less than 0.3%) in a Full-Spectrum CBD product.
CO2 extraction is one of the most common ways CBD is extracted from the hemp or cannabis plants. This method uses expensive equipment that adjusts temperature and pressure to extract the cannabinoids from the plant material, without damaging them. The other common method is to use solvents like ethanol or butane to extract the plant material. These solvents have to be burned off the final product which may damage the cannabinoids or terpenes in the process. There is also a risk that these solvents may not have burned off completely and could end up in your end product.
In response to the FDA’s historic decision, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) announced in September 2018 that it had removed Epidiolex from Schedule I classification, a category reserved for dangerous drugs with no medical value. Henceforth, Epidiolex would be considered a Schedule V drug, the least dangerous designation under the Controlled Substances Act.
Medterra prides itself on offering what it terms “true seed-to-sale purchases,” with the hemp crop used for its CBD oil cultivated and extracted to the exacting standards demanded by the Kentucky Department of Agriculture. Potential buyers may be encouraged, too, to know that “quality, consistency and safety are… top priorities” at Medterra, and to that end all of the raw materials the company uses are independently lab tested. Plus, those who decide to take the plunge and order from the provider’s site can reap the benefits of its rewards program, with points given for Facebook shares, reviews and purchases. Among the products on offer at Medterra are CBD oil tinctures, capsules and pain-alleviating cream, all of which fall under a money-back pledge if not deemed to be to customers’ satisfaction.
Don’t let the name confuse you. CBD oil comes in many shapes and forms besides the traditional oils that we’ve highlighted here. CBD tinctures are the most popular type of CBD oil, because they tend to have more potent concentrations and offer high bioavailability (e.g. more CBD gets absorbed through your bloodstream when you apply it beneath your tongue as a tincture). Plus, users typically begin to feel the effects within minutes.
This tincture is processed using the brand’s signature ‘Gold Formula,’ a full spectrum blend of terpenes, phytocannabinoids, fatty acids, and vitamin E. The drops are offered in three concentrations: 250mg in a 1-oz. container, or 750mg and 1,500mg in 2-oz. containers. Plus CBD Oil recommends taking half a dropper, or 15 drops, per dose. The drops are vegetarian-friendly and free of GMOs, gluten, and glycerin.
The main reason we like Kat’s Naturals CBD oils are because they use hempseed oil to infuse 1,500 mg of CBD isolate. While the hempseed itself doesn’t contain any actual CBD, it is chock-full of phytonutrients, plant protein, and other nutritious compounds. The only reason other companies use coconut or MCT oil to infuse the CBD instead of hempseed oil, is because hempseed is lower in saturated fat so it doesn’t have as great a bioavailability. In other words, taking a CBD oil infused in MCT oil will allow more of the active compound to reach parts of the body that you need it to. For combining the natural therapeutic elements of CBD with the nutritional benefits of hempseed, however, Kat’s Naturals is a great product. I would recommend using it as a daily health supplement moreso than an actual therapy to treat any kind of condition or ailment.
If medical marijuana is illegal in a given state, THC levels determine whether a CBD product is illicit or not. In most places, the limit is extremely low. We’re talking under 1 percent THC, with some states opting for a cap as low as 0.3 percent. In this case, the only source that would work is hemp, and CBD products will, therefore, be hemp-derived.
Through its regularly updated and highly informative blog, Koi CBD goes the extra mile to help its customers learn about new developments in the field of CBD use. The company also helps its patrons out by publishing full lab results on each of its products, helping CBD oil users know exactly what to expect. And those purchases may include Koi’s bespoke full-spectrum CBD oil blend, complete with fellow cannabinoids CBDV, CBN and CBG – the inclusion of which, the company claims, “provide[s] the ultimate experience in CBD.” Also available to buy from Koi’s website are a range of 1,000 mg vaping liquids, lavender-scented body lotion, tropical-flavored gummies and, for canine CBD lovers, chewable treats.
CBDPure oils are made with non-GMO hemp, grown in Colorado by local farmers. Our hemp oil is minimally processed by following the highest organic standards at every step of our growing, harvesting, and bottling process. When you buy a CBDPure product, you are buying the purest CBD oil from natural sources, that is 100% free of any synthetic or artificial ingredients. We test every batch of oil that we process to ensure that it meets the purity standards that we demand.
Our bodies are thought to produce endocannabinoids by the billions every day. “We always thought the ‘runner’s high’ was due to the release of dopamine and endorphins. But now we know the euphoria is also from an endocannabinoid called anandamide,” its name derived from the Sanskrit word for bliss, says Joseph Maroon, MD, clinical professor and vice chairman of neurosurgery at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. We produce these natural chemicals all day, but they fade quickly because enzymes pop up to destroy them. That’s where CBD comes in: By blocking these enzymes, CBD allows the beneficial compounds to linger.
NuLeaf Naturals CBD oil tinctures are all full spectrum; it is 100% organic and never made with herbicides, pesticides, or chemical fertilizers. The brand offers a full spectrum pet CBD oil tincture, as well. NuLeaf Naturals offers free shipping to all 50 states; the brand’s products are also sold in more than 1,000 retail locations across the country.
CBD derived from marijuana is a different story, and the law varies from state to state. But as long as you’re using CBD oil that contains less than 0.3 percent THC, you have nothing to be concerned about anywhere in the United States. On the other hand, if you want to take your CBD on a trip outside the country, definitely look into local laws to avoid getting into awkward situations while you’re away.
Is CBD Legal? Hemp-derived CBD products (with less than 0.3 percent THC) are legal on the federal level, but are still illegal under some state laws. Marijuana-derived CBD products are illegal on the federal level, but are legal under some state laws. Check your state’s laws and those of anywhere you travel. Keep in mind that nonprescription CBD products are not FDA-approved, and may be inaccurately labeled.
It’s important to know that there is no “best” brand or product for everyone. The best CBD oil is the one that works well for you. Each person has a unique endocannabinoid system, body chemistry, and severity of the condition. A brand or product that works well for one person with a specific situation may not work for you at all. This reality is understandably frustrating for many of those who are new to CBD oil.
The color of CBD oil drops can range from clear or slightly golden, to a dark brown almost black. Several factors determine the finished product color, including the type of CBD extract, the extraction method used, the carrier oil used, and additional ingredients. Full spectrum (whole plant) extracts tend to be darker in color, whereas isolates tend to be more transparent.
Sadly, there are unscrupulous companies out there looking to take advantage of people wanting to try CBD oil. A free trial bottle of CBD oil sounds like a great deal. They say you just need to pay a small shipping and handling fee. But what really happens is that they will send you a very low quality product. They’ll also keep charging your credit card every month for as much as $90 per month until you cancel your “subscription” with them. This is an outright scam that you want to avoid.