What You Need To Know About CBD Tincture vs Oil
Posted on May 24th, 2021
CBD gained a lot of popularity in recent years due to its many supposed health benefits. Currently, there is a flood in the market of a wide variety of CBD products, all of which cater to different consumers. CBD oils and CBD tinctures are among some of the most sought-after CBD products. However, there is a lot of confusion surrounding CBD tincture vs oil. It also doesn’t help that some companies often use these terms interchangeably when describing their products. It is also quite easy to see why most consumers confuse the two CBD products. For starters, they have similar packaging and also have similar uses. A tinted glass bottle holds both of the products and is both of their preferred method of application its sublingually.
With that being said, you might be wondering: what exactly is the difference between CBD oils and CBD tincture? Well, in this article, we are going to take a look at everything you need to know about CBD tincture vs oil.
What’s the Difference?
Despite having nearly the same packaging and uses, both products have distinct features that set the two of them apart. The difference between CBD oils and CBD tinctures basically lies in their composition and the types of ingredients used. First, it is important to note that both CBD tinctures and CBD oils offer the same potential benefits. This is because both products contain CBD extracted from the hemp, also known as the Cannabis sativa L. plant.
What Is CBD Oil?
Basically, CBD oil is a blend of cannabidiol extract obtained using the supercritical CO2 extraction method and a carrier oil like MCT oil, hemp seed oil, etc. CBD oil may contain other compounds such as terpenes and flavonoids along with other minor cannabinoids. Once these compounds are extracted, manufacturers infuse them in their chosen carrier oil. To improve the flavor, essential oils are more often than not added to the mix.
What Is CBD Tincture?
On the other hand, CBD tinctures are alcohol-based CBD extracts. Unlike CBD oil which uses the supercritical CO2 extraction method to create a CBD tincture, they use high-proof alcohol as a solvent. Thus, tinctures employ an entirely different method when extracting the compounds from the hemp plant material. High-proof alcohol will become the main solvent agent of the process. You can easily make your own CBD tincture at home by soaking hemp plant material in a jar of alcohol for a couple of days or even weeks. Keep in mind that CBD is only present in the leaves, flowers, and stems of the hemp plant. The seeds of the hemp plant don’t contain any CBD.
The Difference Between CBD Tincture vs Oil
The main difference between CBD tincture vs oil is the fact that CBD tinctures use alcohol to extract natural compounds and as a base ingredient. Meanwhile, CBD oil uses carbon dioxide to extract the compounds and carrier oil as a base ingredient.
Thanks to the use of high-proof alcohol, tinctures have a longer shelf life than CBD oil. However, they tend to have a very bitter taste which can be off-putting to most first-time consumers. As a result, many companies mix their tinctures with additives such as sweeteners and flavors.
Do You Use Them Differently?
The method of application of CBD oils and tinctures goes on in pretty much the same way. The most popular and effective method of taking these products is sublingually by putting them underneath the tongue. Here, you place a few drops or a full dropper under the tongue and hold the liquid for 30 seconds to a minute before swallowing.
The sublingual method allows for the fastest and most efficient absorption due to the presence of a large network of capillaries. As a result of taking this particular route, it goes directly into the bloodstream. CBD molecules directly enter into the blood without undergoing metabolization as opposed to when orally taken. If taken orally, it can take to up to 1 hour for the CBD to act.
Others Ways of Using Them
For those seeking the topical benefits of CBD, you can also apply pure CBD oil directly to the skin. It is, however, important to note that the topical application of CBD oil doesn’t allow for the CBD molecules to get to the bloodstream. It is rather ideal for localized pain relief. However, you should avoid using CBD tinctures topically since this is not only ineffective but it can also lead to skin irritation.
Another way to use CBD tinctures is by adding a few drops to foods and beverages. However, this is not optimal for CBD oil since it may not mix well, and it may leave an off-putting oily taste.
Regardless of what you are looking for, it is highly important that you consult your doctor before you start using CBD oils or tinctures. Your doctor will help to determine whether you are able to use the product, especially if you are already on some others medications.
Which Is More Popular?
While CBD tincture vs oil does offer very similar benefits, CBD oil is the most popular CBD product. Besides being preferred for its taste, CBD oil it’s something you can use both orally and topically. Thus, it is more versatile than CBD tinctures.
For most people, the foul taste of CBD tinctures, as well as the risk for allergic reactions, is enough to make them steer clear of the product.
What’s more, CBD oils generally have higher CBD potency.
Tinctures are ideal for those who don’t love the taste and feel of oil and also want to add their CBD to foods and beverages.
Is One More Effective Than the Other?
Due to the presence of alcohol, CBD tinctures have higher bioavailability compared to CBD oil. The alcohol allows for a faster CBD absorption rate than CBD oil. The actual oil in the CBD oil makes it harder for our bodies to absorb the CBD molecules. Various tests show that, when taken orally, only about 5-10% of the CBD oil consumed ends up absorbed into the body.
However, you should note that CBD oil has a higher potency of CBD compared to CBD tinctures, which makes CBD oil slightly more expensive.
What different carrier oils are used?
CBD oils generally consist of two main ingredients: CBD and a carrier oil. CBD, in its purest form, comes in the form of crystals. The body isn’t able to properly absorb or metabolize CBD. Thus, the CBD isolate is infused in a carrier oil. There are various options when it comes to a suitable carrier oil:
- Medium-Chain Triglyceride (MCT) coconut oil
- Hemp seed oil
- Olive oil
While both hemp seed oil and olive oil can serve as effective carrier oils, MCT oil is the most preferred carrier oil. This is due to the fact that MCT oil possesses a scientific profile that allows for optimal digestion and absorption in the human body.
Info on the CBD extraction process: CBD tincture vs oil
Perhaps the biggest difference between CBD oil and CBD tinctures lies in the method of CBD extraction. For CBD oil, supercritical CO2 is the most preferred method of CBD extraction, while for CBD tinctures, the CBD is extracted by using alcohol as the solvent. The plant material is soaked in alcohol to extract and dissolve the compounds.
CBD Oil: Supercritical CO2 Extraction Method
While various methods can be used for extracting CBD when preparing CBD oil, this is by far the best and safest method of CBD extraction. Here, the cannabis plant material is allowed to sit in CO2, after which the extract is distilled to separate the individual compounds. The extract basically undergoes two distillation processes: winterization and short path distillation.
In the winterization phase, all the undesired components extracted from the plant are removed. In this process, alcohol is mixed with the oil then frozen through the night. The mixture is then filtered to get rid of all fats and undesired components. To remove the alcohol, the solution is warmed.
The short path distillation is the last stage of the supercritical CO2 extraction method. Here, the solution is heated at different set temperatures. This is meant to separate all the individual compounds as they all have different boiling temperatures.
Benefits of CBD?
CBD offers users a wide range of potential health benefits, which is why it has gained a lot of popularity among the general public and also captured the interest of the scientific community. In addition, it doesn’t have the psychoactive effects associated with THC, another popular cannabinoid. This makes it an ideal choice for those seeking a natural and effective health supplement.
While it is not yet clearly understood how exactly CBD works in the body, it is believed that it produces its health benefits through its influence on the endocannabinoid system. The ECS is a complex nerve cell signaling system present in the human body, and it is responsible for regulating a wide range of bodily functions, ensuring cognitive, physiological, and emotional balance.
Here are some of the reported benefits of CBD, all still under investigation:
- Provides relief for pain and inflammation.
- Help to treat epilepsy and seizures.
- Can help to improve one’s mood.
- Helps to treat stress and anxiety.
- Helps to treat symptoms of arthritis.
- Can help to treat sleep disorders.
- Helps to relieve nausea and anxiety.
- Can help to treat symptoms arising from cancer treatment and can help to stop the progression of certain types of cancers.