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A guide to the most common CBD products and how they affect the body. Differences Between CBD Oil and CBD Vape Juice E-Liquid If you’ve ever come across the term “CBD vape oil”, you know that someone’s got their cannabis glossary wrong. You can’t vape CBD oil just There is a plethora of ways to get your daily dose of CBD, but the way you ingest it can alter its effectiveness. Learn why vaping CBD tends to work best.

Edibles vs. topicals vs. vaping vs. oils: CBD products, explained

A guide to the most common CBD products and how they affect the body.

Danielle Kosecki is an award-winning journalist who has covered health and fitness for 15 years. She’s written for Glamour, More, Prevention and Bicycling magazines, among others, and is the editor of The Bicycling Big Book of Training. A New York native, Danielle now lives in Oakland where she doesn’t miss winter at all.

You’re not imagining it — CBD is everywhere. After the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 legalized hemp-derived cannabidiol, products with it have flooded the market. Burgers , coffee, cartridges , pet shampoo — you name it and there’s probably a version that contains CBD.

This story discusses substances that are legal in some places but not in others and is for informational purposes only and not for the purpose of providing legal advice. You shouldn’t do things that are illegal — this story does not endorse or encourage illegal drug use.

The sheer variety of CBD products can be overwhelming — especially considering they all interact with and affect the body in different ways — but the abundance can also be a good thing.

“Medical cannabis users can kind of mix and match what they use in ways that can potentially be similar to the medication a physician would give them, says Kevin Boehnke, Ph.D., research investigator in the department of anesthesiology and the Chronic Pain and Fatigue Research Center at the University of Michigan. For example, when it comes to pain management — the top medical use for CBD — a fast-acting form of cannabis (like vaping) and a slower-acting form (like edibles) could potentially be used analogously to fast-acting and extended-release pain relievers.

Research into the potential health effects of CBD, as well as optimal doses for specific conditions, is still preliminary but there are a few things we know about the different delivery methods.

Edibles (including pills and capsules)

CBD is available in many edible forms, including beverages, chocolate and these gumdrop candies.

This class of CBD products includes anything ingestible — from drinks to candy to capsules.

Pros: With such a large variety of edible CBD products available, people may have an easier time finding something that fits their preferences. For example, food products, like chocolate, gummies and granola bars, may have an earthy flavor that some may find unappealing but pills and capsules tend to be tasteless.

Packaged edibles can also make it easier to take a specific dose (though checking a product’s certificate of analysis is the best way to confirm it contains the type and amount of ingredients listed on the package).

Cons: Absorption can be slow, erratic and variable, according to research. “If you eat an edible, it actually takes a while to hit the bloodstream because it has to be digested and metabolized by the liver,” says Boehnke. “So it takes a while to take effect but then that lasts a lot longer and tapers more slowly.”

And things like how much food someone has recently eaten can affect how much CBD is absorbed by the body, which is usually around 20%-30%. Peak bloodstream levels are usually achieved within one to two hours, though it can take up to six. That variability makes edibles the least predictable methods of using CBD.

Vaporizers

Many brands offer vaporizers with CBD.

Similar to e-cigarettes , vaporizers heat up dry cannabis flower or CBD oils, creating an inhalable vapor.

Pros: Vaping is the fastest way to potentially feel results. Peak bloodstream levels occur around 10 minutes but most people can start feeling the effects within a few minutes of the first inhalation and the effects can stick around for three to five hours.

“When you vape or smoke, it quickly hits the bloodstream, so there is a quick effect onset that tapers off more quickly than edibles,” says Boehnke.

Cons: Like edibles, a variety of factors, such as how deeply someone inhales, how long they hold their breath, and how hot a vaporizer runs can affect CBD absorption, which can vary from 10%-60%. Dosing can also be difficult, although prefilled pens that meter out doses help to consistently zero in on the right amount.

Lastly, vape cartridges can contain propylene glycol , a liquid alcohol that’s also found in e-cigarettes and can break down into formaldehyde, a probable carcinogen, at high temperatures. There are “solvent-free” oils on the market that don’t use propylene glycol, and come with a certificate of analysis detailing what chemicals are present.

Oils and tinctures

The CBD in these products are usually extracted from hemp and then diluted with an oil, often sesame. The resulting oil or tincture is then typically placed under the tongue using a dropper or sprayed on the inside the cheek, where it’s absorbed directly into the bloodstream.

Pros: After vaping, oils and tinctures are the second-fastest way to feel the effects of CBD — usually within 30 minutes. Unless it’s added to food or immediately swallowed, in which case it will have to be processed by the liver first.

Cons: Depending on the product, dosing can be tricky. Labeled droppers can be a big help, as can shaking the bottle well before use because CBD can get stuck to the side of the container.

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Topicals

Marijuana bubble bath and body lotion is seen for sale at the Higher Path medical marijuana dispensary in California’s San Fernando Valley.

Robyn Beck / AFP/Getty Images

Topicals include lotions and balms that are rubbed directly onto the skin, as well as transdermal patches that stick to the skin and gradually release CBD into the bloodstream over a prolonged period of time.

Pros: Topicals can be as effective as oral delivery methods. Lotions work more locally, making them a great option for things like arthritis and menstrual cramps, whereas transdermal patches will have a more wide-reaching effect.

Cons: Topicals generally need to contain higher amounts of active ingredients, like CBD, to be effective, which can drive up the price. There’s also the risk of skin irritation. The time required to take effect can vary.

The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health provider regarding any questions you may have about a medical condition or health objectives.

Differences Between CBD Oil and CBD Vape Juice E-Liquid

If you’ve ever come across the term “CBD vape oil”, you know that someone’s got their cannabis glossary wrong. You can’t vape CBD oil just like you can’t ingest CBD vape E-liquid orally.

There’s a ton of confusion and misconceptions out there around cannabidiol terminology.

One of the most confusing things about CBD products is the difference between CBD oil and CBD vape E-liquid.

When it comes to using these terms, the majority of people use them interchangeably — which is incorrect.

What’s worse is that a lot of CBD businesses don’t really seem to care about the differences between those two products.

With few regulations on CBD goods, the whole industry is like the Wild West, and if we’re being honest, that’s not the direction we’d like to see the industry move in.

Hopefully, this guide on the differences between CBD oil and CBD vape E-liquids will clear up the fog of confusion.

After reading the article, you’ll never use the terms CBD oil, CBD tinctures, and CBD vape E-liquids wrong again.

Class, open your CBD dictionaries, please.

Is CBD Oil the Same As Hemp Oil?

Like we said, CBD oil may seem like an easy topic, but when you try to delve into the details, you’ll understand how wrong you’ve been for your entire life.

It all starts with one umbrella term: cannabis oil

Here’s a quick breakdown of how the terminology overlaps:

CANNABIS OIL
Marijuana-derived oils Hemp-derived oils
THC oil CBD oil
CBD oil Hemp oil
Marijuana oil Hemp seed oil

Cannabis oil is used to describe all oils from the cannabis family plants.

That being said, cannabis oil can refer either to both marijuana oil or hemp oil.

Further, marijuana oil can mean THC oil, CBD oil, or THC/CBD oil (often just summarized as marijuana oil) where these two cannabinoids appear in an even ratio.

The term “hemp oil”, on the other hand, can be used to refer to CBD hemp oil or hemp seed oil.

CBD hemp oil is extracted from the flowers of mature hemp plants, while hemp seed oil is made from seeds as the name suggests.

CBD Oil vs. CBD Vape E-Liquid: What’s the Difference?

We’ll try to keep it as simple as possible.

CBD oil is basically a CBD extract from cannabis plants, suspended in a carrier oil solution.

People use CBD oil for medical purposes, using it as sublingual drops, capsules, or as a food additive.

The extraction is commonly performed with the use of CO2 to isolate the CBD molecules along with other cannabinoids and terpenes from the plant matter.

This method ensures a pure, distilled form of CBD which can be suspended in a carrier oil such as olive oil, hemp seed oil, or MCT oil.

CBD vape E-liquids use the same extract (with a different kind of carrier oil), which is then thinned with agents like propylene glycol (PG) or vegetable glycerin (VG).

Without adding these two compounds to the CBD mixture, the oil will be too viscous to undergo the vaporization process correctly.

This, in turn, brings us to another question.

Can I Vape CBD Oil?

As mentioned, CBD oils are concentrated extracts that are specifically made to be taken orally (e.g. beneath the tongue). They haven’t been designed to be vaporized with a vape pen.

That’s because CBD oil is too thick to be vaporized in the coil.

And what about eating CBD vape E-liquids? Can you use it this way?

Propylene Glycol and Vegetable Glycerin are not meant for oral consumption, and even vaping the CBD liquid for an extended period of time isn’t as safe as some companies are trying to convince you.

To cut a long story short, no, you can’t vape CBD oil and vice versa — you can’t eat CBD vape E-liquids.

Distinguishing Between CBD E-Liquids & Vape Juice

We know what you’re thinking right now.

“This is madness… Please, not another subcategory!”

THIS IS CBD LINGO!

Fear not, we’re not going to cause any more anxiety.

CBD E-liquids and vape juices are basically the same things… for the most part.

CBD E-liquid is the term to describe any CBD fluid that has been made specifically for a vape pen, whereas vape juices refer to pre-filled cartridges you can load your vaporizer with.

CBD juices can be refilled with any CBD E-liquid if you run out of your current batch.

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Before we proceed to choose between CBD oil and CBD vape E-liquid, we need to clear up one last thing.

What About CBD Tinctures?

While CBD tinctures look very much like CBD oil — especially when bottled — there are slight differences between these two products.

The word tincture itself means any medicine kept in an alcohol solution.

The undeniable advantage of suspending your CBD in alcohol is the ease of use. You can conveniently administer it into food or take it straight under the tongue. However, we don’t recommend adding PG or VG to the mixture, as the alcohol is not designed to vaporize the same way that the vape oil does.

CBD Oil vs. CBD Vape E-Liquid: Which One Should I Use?

Regardless of the product you choose, all forms of CBD serve one purpose: to let you experience the health benefits of cannabidiol.

CBD oil is the most popular form of administration because it’s easy to use, offers decent bioavailability and precise dosing.

However, with the rising demand for CBD products, there is a myriad of CBD goods to deliver the same effects, but vape E-liquids have recently jumped on everyone’s tongue as being superior to CBD oil in many aspects.

Here’s a quick breakdown of the pros and cons of both consumption methods:

1. Vaping is More Bioavailable Than Hemp Oils

What is bioavailability?

We’ve used this term a couple of times in the article, but we haven’t explained it yet.

Let’s make up for it.

Bioavailability is measured by the amount of CBD actually reaching the bloodstream.

The bioavailability of CBD oil varies between 25% and 40%, whereas vaping has been shown to provide 50%–60% bioavailability, with some studies suggesting even 80%.

Simply put, this means you need less CBD to get the expected effects when you vape it than using it orally, which is also cost-effective.

2. Vaping is More Convenient than CBD Oils

Nothing can match the convenience of using a vape pen.

Whenever you need to take CBD, you just turn on the pen, heat the liquid to the desired temperature, and inhale the therapeutic cannabinoids.

It’s much easier than measuring out the dosage with the dropper and putting the oil under your tongue.

3. Dosing is Easier with CBD Oils

If you want to dose CBD oil effectively, you need to answer three questions:

  1. How much CBD is in the bottle?
  2. How much CBD does the oil contain per mL?
  3. How much CBD oil can the dropper hold?

This way, you can calculate the dosage based on your body weight, and adjust the number of milliliters in the dropper so they match your dosage guidelines.

With CBD vape E-liquids, dosing is a different story.

Let’s say you’ve been advised to take 10 mg of CBD per day. Most companies provide dosing guidelines for their CBD vape pens. They will often tell you how much CBD is in one puff of their pen. If a single puff contains 2.25mg of CBD, then you will need to inhale four times to meet your dosage.

4. Vapes Have a Faster Onset of Effects

People often wonder how long it takes for the CBD to kick in.

In order to produce its effects, CBD oil must be absorbed sublingually before making it to the bloodstream.

Although CBD oil applied sublingually can act faster than its edible forms (capsules, gummies, etc.), you still need to wait anywhere between 15 and 30 minutes to start experiencing the health benefits of cannabidiol.

Vaping, on the other hand, causes you to absorb CBD through the lungs, which gives CBD E-liquids a shorter onset time.

You can feel the calming effects of CBD almost immediately after the last puff from your vape pen. This can prove invaluable if you need fast relief from your ailments.

5. CBD Oils are Likely to Have Fewer Health Risks

The World Health Organization (WHO) has claimed CBD oil as a safe, natural compound with no potential for abuse.

This means CBD oil can’t pose threat to one’s health and thus is entirely safe for human consumption.

CBD vape E-liquids, however, are not risk-free.

First, the temperature of your vaporizer, as well as the amount of liquid you’re inhaling at one time, can get hard on your lungs; not as hard as smoking, of course, but it still can affect people with pre-existing lung conditions.

Also, over-inhalation of CBD liquids can lead to excessive coughing and nausea.

Another health risk associated with vaping CBD is the use of toxic thinning agents such as propylene glycol.

While PG allows the liquid to vaporize evenly, it can potentially break down into carcinogens when they are treated with extremely high temperatures.

According to a study from the International Journal of Environmental Research, inhaling even low amounts of propylene glycol caused respiratory issues like asthma and allergic responses.

If you want to avoid the dangers caused by propylene glycol, we suggest that you switch to vaping dry flowers or E-liquids made with 100% vegetable glycerin.

Final Thoughts on the Differences Between CBD Oil vs. CBD Vape E-Liquids

We hope that we’ve managed to clear up any confusion and misunderstandings you may have faced when browsing different CBD products.

The differences between CBD oil vs. CBD vape E-liquids are subtle yet significant.

Here’s a recap:

  1. CBD oil is an umbrella term that can basically describe any oil which contains cannabidiol.
  2. Most CBD oil products are used orally or sublingually (under the tongue).
  3. CBD oil and CBD tinctures are two terms often used interchangeably. While they look very much alike, tinctures involve using alcohol instead of oil to suspend the cannabinoids..
  4. CBD vape E-liquid is a CBD extract contained in substances like propylene glycol or vegetable glycerin. These two compounds help the liquid vaporize more efficiently and produce thick clouds of vapor.
  5. You can’t vape CBD oil, just like you can’t eat CBD E-liquid.
  6. If you ever come across a company advertising their products as “vape oils”, they mean “vape liquid”.
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Whichever of these products you’re about to use, just make sure you always get your CBD from a reputable source. The CBD market is still loosely regulated, to say the least, so the current legal limbo creates ripe opportunities for sketchy companies to rip unaware customers off their hard-earned money.

Don’t be one of those customers!

Livvy Ashton

Livvy is a registered nurse (RN) and board-certified nurse midwife (CNM) in the state of New Jersey. After giving birth to her newborn daughter, Livvy stepped down from her full-time position at the Children’s Hospital of New Jersey. This gave her the opportunity to spend more time writing articles on all topics related to pregnancy and prenatal care.

‘Should I Be Vaping CBD?’: Why Vaporization Works Better Than Ingestion

This article is sponsored by CV Sciences, Inc. CV Sciences is one of the leading suppliers and manufacturers of agricultural hemp-derived CBD bulk and finished products, namely their PlusCBD Oil and Purified Liquids brands.

“There’s more than one way to skin a cat” is a weirdly morbid saying, but the phrase’s core concept rings true – there are a lot of ways to accomplish the same task. This has never been more true for cannabidiol (CBD). With the rising demand for CBD products, there are a plethora of different ways to get your daily dose. They range from sublingual sprays, to vaping CBD oils, to smoking good old-fashioned joints. Yet most people don’t know that the way in which you ingest CBD can drastically alter its effective dosage.

CBD’s Bioavailability: Understanding Its Variations

In general, not all of the CBD you consume will directly affect your body: only a certain percentage will be able to enter your systemic circulation and produce its active effects. This percentage is referred to in science as “bioavailability,” and it strongly depends on the manner in which CBD is introduced to your system. For example, the oral bioavailability of CBD is roughly 15 percent. That means for every 100 milligrams of CBD that you eat, only 15 milligrams will actually reach your bloodstream.

There are two main reasons why this happens. First, CBD is hydrophobic, meaning that it is not very water-soluble. In the same way that oil does not like to mix with vinegar, CBD does not like to stay in your bloodstream. Instead, it rapidly diffuses out of your blood and accumulates into your fatty tissues. Unfortunately, this significantly reduces the amount of bioactive CBD that can enter your systemic circulation, allowing for less CBD to be carried to its active sites in your body and thus lowering its overall bioavailability.

Second, when an organic compound like CBD enters your gut, it has to pass through the liver before it enters your circulation. During this transition, the liver will actively reduce the amount of CBD, either through absorption or through chemical breakdown by liver enzymes. This phenomenon is called the “first-pass effect,” where passing through the liver reduces the concentration of bioactive compounds.

Maximizing CBD’s Effects: How to Offset CBD Loss by Vaporizing

There are a few different ways to offset these losses of CBD. For one, you can reduce the amount of CBD that dissolves out of your bloodstream by putting the CBD into a form that is more hydrophilic, or water-soluble. However, this can only be achieved by complicated chemical means, such as through the use of cyclodextrins or liposomes. A more practical solution is to bypass the first-pass effect of oral administration entirely by utilizing vaporization.

During vaporization, CBD enters your lungs and diffuses directly into your bloodstream rather than passing through your gut and liver. This avoids the first-pass effect altogether, allowing nearly four times as much CBD to enter your circulation for a maximum bioavailability of roughly 50 to 60 percent. Essentially, this means you can achieve the same beneficial effects with a much smaller amount of CBD.

Not only that, but vaping will greatly decrease the amount of time it takes for the CBD in your body to become active, since you don’t have to wait for it to travel through your gut. By vaporizing a CBD e-liquid or high-CBD concentrate, you could potentially feel its effects 30 to 60 minutes faster. This makes vaping CBD an extremely efficient delivery method.

Of course, if you’re leaning towards embracing the vape life, make sure you’ve done your research on the concentrate you intend to consume. Without sufficient regulatory oversight in the emerging vape and cannabis industries, few companies have been able to produce a clear and homogenous CBD solution, so the milligram amount in CBD products is often inconsistent with the amount claimed on the label. Be sure to ask for both in-house and third-party test results from your chosen source to ensure you’re getting a quality product!

Andrew Pham currently serves as the Lead Scientist at CV Sciences, Inc. He was formerly the Lead Scientist at SC Laboratories, a prominent third-party analytical testing lab. He is also an executive member of the Cannabis Chemistry Subdivision (CANN) of the American Chemical Society.

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