Cannabidiol (CBD) is a cannabinoid that’s found in both hemp and marijuana. It has several benefits for people who struggle with anxiety, depression, pain management, and more.
While it can be taken in many different forms—including oils, creams, and other topical solutions—the most common way to ingest CBD is through the use of tinctures. A tincture is simply an extract of CBD combined into a liquid form so you can swallow it or apply it topically.
However, not all CBD products are created equal, especially when it comes to tinctures versus CBD creams. And there’s even more confusion surrounding whether one type of CBD product is actually more beneficial than another.
To clear up any confusion, we put together this guide to help you determine which CBD product is best for your needs.
What’s the difference between CBD products?
There are two main ways to consume CBD: via tinctures or orally as a pill. Both have their own pros and cons, but they also come with some major differences in terms of how the body absorbs and metabolizes them.
Tinctures use alcohol as a solvent to extract the cannabinoids from the plant material. The alcohol then evaporates out, leaving behind the CBD, which is absorbed by the body. This method is often recommended for those new to cannabis who may be worried about taking CBD directly, as the process is simple enough that you don’t need much guidance. However, the downside is that you won’t know exactly what you’re getting since the amount of THC contained in each batch varies depending on the strain of hemp used.
When applied topically, CBD oil is absorbed into the skin where it can do its magic. In fact, studies show that CBD is effective at reducing inflammation, lowering blood sugar levels, and treating pain. But unlike tinctures, CBD creams contain no solvents and instead rely on emulsifiers like coconut oil or glycerin to bind the CBD in a cream base. These emulsifiers allow CBD to easily spread into the skin and penetrate the dermis layer.
The problem with these creams is that they can be highly concentrated and contain large amounts of CBD per gram. This makes them very easy to overdose on, so it’s important to start slowly if you’ve never consumed CBD before. If you’ve never had such high concentrations of CBD before, it could take longer for you to feel the effects. That being said, you should always talk to a doctor before consuming CBD creams or oils to make sure you’re giving yourself the right dosage.
Another thing to consider is that while tinctures are made using ethanol, CBD creams must use glycerin as a solvent. Some experts believe that glycerin is less toxic than ethanol, though this isn’t officially supported by science.
Which is better? Tinctures or CBD creams?
If you’ve been curious about CBD but haven’t tried either yet, tinctures might be the better option for you. But if you’re looking for something more potent, you might want to try CBD creams first.
This is because creams typically use higher concentrations of CBD than tinctures. Most CBD creams will contain anywhere from 2% to 10% concentration. Compare that to 1% for tinctures. When it comes to creams, you definitely get more bang for your buck.
That being said, tinctures are still the safest choice. They offer the highest level of control over the dose, and you can get even more precise with your dosing if needed. Plus, tinctures usually come in smaller doses than creams, so you’ll only need to buy smaller bottles of tinctures to last you awhile.
In contrast, creams are more convenient to use and require less effort. You can just pop open a bottle and apply to your face whenever you need relief. With CBD creams, you don’t even need to worry about mixing it with anything else.
But keep in mind, creams aren’t without drawbacks. Because they use higher concentrations of CBD, you run the risk of overdosing, especially if you’re trying to treat chronic conditions. And since creams are already highly concentrated, you’ll likely need to apply more CBD than tinctures to achieve the same effects. So if you choose to go with creams, you should probably start with lower doses, and work your way up once you’re feeling the results.
Bottom line: Either way, start slow and test your limits to see which works best for you. And if you’re still unsure, speak to your doctor.
How can I tell the difference between brands?
One of the biggest factors to look out for when choosing CBD creams is the brand. Brands like Charlotte’s Web, Mindful Essences, and NaturaLite all offer great quality products made with premium ingredients. There are plenty of other options for you to explore too, including PureKana, Green Roads, and Cannabinoid Pharms.
When it comes to finding the best tinctures, there are a lot more options out there. For starters, you should look for brands that are third-party tested for purity so you know you’re getting exactly what you pay for. Companies like CBD Oil Review and CBD Crew provide independent reviews to help you navigate the market.
With all of the research available online, you should be able to find a reputable company that suits your needs. Keep in mind that companies like Charlotte’s Web and CannaVest are federally regulated, so you know you’re dealing with a legitimate seller.
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