The first time you start shopping for CBD products, the wide array of options can feel overwhelming. Typing "CBD" into an internet search bar can pull up thousands upon thousands of results, and it's hard to know even where to begin.
Before you start your search, you'll want to educate yourself on what exactly to look for when shopping for CBD products.
We're here today to help demystify the process and help you get started.
5 Things to Keep in Mind When Shopping for CBD
Depending on your particular needs, there may be more than five factors to take into consideration. However, if you're just getting started with CBD, these are some basic things to keep in mind as you comparison shop.
Check the Extraction Process
The process of extracting Cannabidiol from hemp or marijuana is neither easy nor cheap, and not every company uses the same methods.
Over the years, different extraction methods have been developed, all of which have certain benefits and certain downsides.
Here are three of the most common processes currently in use:
- CO2 Extraction. With the CO2 extraction process, pressurized CO2 is pumped into a chamber containing the hemp. The CO2 breaks down the plant and renders the oils into their liquid state. After being pumped into another chamber, the C02 evaporates, leaving behind the extracted oils. Though the most expensive, this method produces high concentrations of oils.
- Solvent Extraction. Isopropyl alcohol, ethanol, hexane, and even olive oil can be used as a solvent to extract oils from the plants. Though much cheaper, this method is also less effective, and often the taste of the oils extracted with this method take on a bitter taste.
- Steam Distillation Extraction. With this method, steam is used to separate the oils from the plants. One of the oldest methods available, it's also one of the least efficient.
Understanding the extraction process can help you make your choice as you shop for CBD products. Recognizing the names of the extraction methods and understanding how they affect quality can make you a smart and savvy customer.
Analyze Types of Products
The CBD market is crowded with a confusing array of products and extracts. In the beginning, it's hard to know what you're looking at well enough to decide if it's what you want.
One of the first things you'll want to check about the products you're considering is whether they're Broad Spectrum or Full Spectrum CBD: Broad Spectrum CBD products "contain other compounds and cannabinoids found in the plant, such as CBC, CBN, or terpenes, such as myrcene, limonene, or pinene," while Full Spectrum CBD products "contain the same compounds as broad-spectrum products. However, they also contain low quantities of THC, usually under 0.3% as mandated by federal law. This amount of THC is not enough to create the 'high' that many people associate with cannabis."
You also have many different varieties of CBD products to enjoy:
- Oils and tinctures
- Edibles (such as gummies)
- Creams and lotions
Not every product is the best fit for every person and every need. Knowing a bit about each product can help you decide if it might be the right choice for you.
Know Your Own Needs
CBD is used as a natural remedy for a number of physical ailments, including:
- Chronic pain
- Mood imbalances and stress
- Skin issues
- Sleep issues
Knowing your own needs can help point you in the right direction when you're shopping for CBD products.
It may also be a wise choice to loop your healthcare provider in as you make these decisions.
Doing your research is important. Patients considering holistic or alternative forms of medical treatments for their chronic medical conditions need to have open conversations with their health care provider to navigate the cannabis landscape better. Looking for transparent ingredient lists and products with a good brand reputation is also important before trying CBD. (UC Davis Health)
Evaluate Best Practices for Labeling
This one's actually a bit tricky. Here in the US, local and state authorities can hold different standards regarding requirements for labeling CBD products.
As a consumer, that makes it challenging to know what to look for. However, there are some basics that you can expect to see on a quality CBD label.
- Purpose. You should be able to clearly identify what the product is intended to do.
- Use. How is the product to be used and consumed?
- Claims. CBD products should not make medical claims.
- Dosage. What is the standard dose, and how many doses should someone take per day?
If you're considering a CBD product that does not clearly answer these questions or state this information, you will want to consider looking elsewhere.
When it comes to deciding what a fair price should be for CBD, there are no easy answers.
Many factors can influence the price of various CBD products, including:
- What type of product you're purchasing
- How potent your products promise to be
- The amount of CBD you're buying
- The extraction method used
- Which company's products you're considering
- Whether you need to pay for shipping
- How quickly you want your products delivered
Based on the answers to these questions, the price range could vary anywhere from under $10 to hundreds.
Being smart about purchasing CBD products often means shopping around, comparing rates and claims, and considering consumer product reviews. Sometimes the best advice you can receive comes from someone who's already been down the road you're currently traveling.
For more information on what to look for when purchasing CBD oil, or to hear more about our premium products and services, please feel free to contact us. We love serving our customers, and we look forward to hearing from you.