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Over the last few years, the cannabidiol (CBD) industry has grown like crazy. By some estimates, the market might reach $20 billion in the near future. This growth means CBD consumers (aka, “you”) have more choices than ever. 

However, if you’ve ever spent half an hour picking out the perfect thing to watch on Netflix, you know too many choices can be overwhelming. You might be thinking, “How am I supposed to know what’s right for me?”

Don’t worry! That’s why we’re here to help. Think of us as your CBD sherpas. As your newly entrusted guide, we’ll introduce you to two of the most popular options on the market, full-spectrum CBD oil and CBD isolate. Let’s break down the difference, so you can get the best CBD experience possible! 

Full-spectrum CBD Oil vs. CBD Isolate

Every cannabis plant contains compounds called phytocannabinoids. Of the more than 100 cannabinoids, cannabidiol (CBD) and tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) are the most famous. 

Both compounds occur naturally in different strains of cannabis. CBD is non-intoxicating and is often used for therapeutic and recreational purposes. On the other hand, THC has mind-altering properties and is often responsible for causing a “high.”

The distinction between full-spectrum and isolate CBD products isn’t as complicated as it sounds. Really, it all comes down to the range of cannabinoids contained in the product. Through the extraction process, of which there are many, the cannabinoid profile and composition will vary.  — one such result includes full-spectrum CBD without THC, otherwise known as broad spectrum CBD.

CBD is full-spectrum CBD without any THC. 

A cannabinoid extract that is highly refined to only include CBD may be considered CBD isolate. However, just because an extract only contains CBD doesn’t mean it is a CBD isolate. There are some distillates that contain no other cannabinoids other than CBD, but aren’t considered isolate because they still have some plant components remaining. Full-spectrum products are less refined and should contain a spectrum of cannabinoids and other natural elements. To throw another category into the mix, there are also Broad Spectrum Extracts, which contain a spectrum of cannabinoids, but no THC, and are usually made through a distillation process. See, that wasn’t so tough! 

Now, let’s look at each type further. 

Full-spectrum CBD Oil

Full-spectrum CBD oil is an extract composed of the naturally-occurring compounds in the cannabis plant, including minor cannabinoids such as CBG, CBN, CBC, as well as CBD. It does contain trace amounts of THC, but no more than 0.3 percent. Now, within the category of full spectrum oil, there are a few different types of extraction, each resulting in their own unique profiles. The two most common are CO2 extraction and alcohol extraction. We’ll get to that in another post, but in short, full spectrum oils from alcohol extraction generally contain more attributes of the whole plant, such as chlorophyll, terpenes, and plant fats, resulting in a stronger taste than CO2 extracts. Spettro is a full spectrum product produced by alcohol extraction.  

There are some studies that suggest that cannabinoids work better in conjunction with other cannabinoids, especially THC, a phenomenon known as the “entourage effect.” Think of it like eating whole fruits or vegetables, as opposed to taking a vitamin. You benefit from the whole fruit or plant, not just the isolated vitamins or minerals contained in the plant. 

CBD Isolate

Available in either a powder or crystals, CBD isolate is the most refined form of CBD. It doesn’t contain any of the other active compounds such as oils, waxes, chlorophyll, minor cannabinoids, or THC that are included in its full-spectrum counterpart. 

Because CBD Isolate is a “pure” product, meaning everything else has been stripped away, it can be easily utilized in many products without imparting a smell or taste. As a powder, it can be added to baked goods, oils, food, tinctures, vape cartridges, and more. It can also be mixed in body or face topicals, without affecting the overall smell of the product. 

CBD isolate is a great choice for athletes or job searchers concerned about failing a drug test, since it doesn’t contain any THC. In fact, CBD was even withdrawn by the World and U.S. Anti-Doping Agencies from the list of prohibited substances last year. 

Comprehensive Choices

Now you have all the info you need to make an informed choice! We believe that everyone should have access to CBD, which is why we carry both full spectrum and isolate based products. We offer full-spectrum CBD oil through our Spettro tincture and CBD isolate via our Puro tincture.  

We use quality, single farm origin, Oregon hemp for both our full spectrum products, as well as for our isolate based products. Remember, each box of Canapa comes with a QR code that you can scan to see your batch specific test results. 

Hopefully we made your CBD choice a little easier! As always, make sure to do sufficient research (thanks for starting with us) before trying any CBD product. 

See our Guide to CBD to learn more about the products we offer and what makes us the leading choice for our customers.