Disclaimer: we don’t claim to be medical experts nor do we claim that any of our CBD products will cure illnesses and/or diseases. We simply wish to educate people on the health, wellness and therapeutic benefits that our customers and other CBD users have seen as a result of cannabidiol usage.
CBD-based treatments have finally been receiving the mainstream attention they deserve. As a result, there seems to be more of them coming onto the market.
This is great from the point of view of providing more choice, but only if people understand what the different options actually mean in practice.
With this in mind, here is a brief guide to CBD oils, tinctures and vape juice.
CBD is a natural chemical found in the cannabis plant
Cannabis plants contain a variety of chemicals known as cannabinoids. Of these, the two most prevalent are CBD and THC.
CBD is known for its soothing qualities and THC for its energizing qualities. In the UK, CBD is legal and THC is not (or at least only up to a maximum concentration of 0.2%).
For this reason, most CBD products sold in the UK are extracts of the hemp plant, which is a specific strain of cannabis sativa. Like all cannabis strains, hemp is liposolvent, which means it dissolves in fat or fat solvents, rather than in water.
CBD oils, tinctures and vape juice are a convenient way of storing and using CBD
There is a benefit to eating fruits and vegetables in their natural, solid, form, because it provides us with healthy fibre.
There is no benefit to eating cannabis flowers in their raw form; in fact it is, at the very least, inconvenient, which is why people have come up with other ways of accessing the CBD goodness.
For most of history this has been smoking, but this is, ironically, not particularly healthy (although it is certainly better than smoking tobacco) hence there has been a growing push to find ways to harness the goodness of CBD without the harmful effects of smoke.
CBD oils, tinctures and vape juice are all different approaches to squaring that circle.
CBD oils, tinctures and vape juice are similar products used for different purposes
CBD oils are regular vegetable or seed oils infused with CBD. They can be consumed orally, used in cooking, or applied topically to the skin.
With CBD oils, you not only get the benefit of the CBD itself, but also the benefit of the oil in which it is infused.
CBD tinctures are what you get when you use alcohol to extract the goodness from CBD. In this case, the alcohol does not add any health benefits the way vegetable and seed oils can, but it is common for CBD tinctures to contain other ingredients to deliver extra benefits.
CBD tinctures are generally consumed orally and some may be used in cooking but they are never applied topically on the skin.
CBD oils, tinctures and vape juice can all be made in different concentrations
The terms CBD oil, CBD tincture and CBD vape juice simply refer to the method of capturing all the goodness of CBD. Each of these products can be made to different levels of concentration.
The details of CBD oil
CBD oils are basically the same as any other kind of infused oil, they just happen to be made with cannabis rather than standard garden fruits, vegetables and/or herbs.
In principle, CBD oils could also contain other ingredients in the same way as CBD tinctures do, but in practice this is not very common, probably because many seed and vegetable oils have a strong taste of their own so adding other ingredients could make them unpalatable.
At this point in time, CBD oil is most commonly made with hemp seed oil, coconut oil and MCT oil (Medium Chain Triglyceride Oil).
All are both healthy and safe, but care should be taken with MCT oil as it can be quite hard to digest and so it may be best to accustom your body to consuming it on its own before using it as a regular CBD oil treatment.
The details of CBD tinctures
CBD tinctures replace vegetable or seed oils with alcohol. This means that you lose the health benefits provided by the vegetable or seed oils, but it also means you lose the taste, which makes it easier to add other ingredients such as flavourings or herbal extracts.
As an added bonus, alcohol is a preservative, hence CBD tinctures can maintain their goodness for longer than CBD oils.
The details of CBD vape juice
CBD vape juice is essentially CBD oil but made with Propylene Glycol (PG) and/or Vegetable Glycerin (VG) instead of vegetable or seed oil.
These oils don’t offer anything in the way of health benefits, but they are thin enough to pass through a vaporizer. Vegetable Glycerin has the added benefit of producing lots of vapour, which is why it tends to be the preferred choice.
In principle, MCT can also be vaped, in the sense that it is thin enough to pass through a vaporizer, however it doesn’t really produce any meaningful vapour and in this context it’s an extremely expensive option.
Why you should avoid using CBD oils and CBD tinctures instead of CBD vape juice
First of all both CBD oils and CBD tinctures have the potential, literally, to destroy your vaporizer. Regular CBD oils are so think they can clog up your vaporizer to the point where it is unusable.
CBD tinctures are alcohol based and alcohol is flammable, which means it could literally burn up your vaporizer.
Secondly, CBD oils produce thick smoke which you don’t want to inhale and CBD tinctures are based on alcohol and you really don’t want to suck alcohol fumes into your lungs.
Last but by no means least, both CBD oils and CBD tinctures are designed to be used either cold and/or thoroughly mixed with other food ingredients. If you try inhaling the vapour they produce it will probably taste absolutely disgusting.
Why you should avoid using CBD vape juice instead of CBD oils and CBD tinctures
Both Propylene Glycol (PG) and Vegetable Glycerin (VG) are safe to consume but neither of them offers any meaningful health benefits and neither of them tastes so good you’d want to consume them as a liquid rather than as vapour.