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Jamie Taylor
Last updated on Nov 26, 2020
13 min read
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CBD Oil vs. CBD Tincture: What Is the Difference?

CBD is no longer a novel term in the field of healthcare and wellness. But if you have a somewhat vague understanding of what CBD is and what role it plays, it's time to set it straight. First and foremost, CBD, also known as cannabidiol, is a substance that the hemp plant contains. This substance was approved on the state level more than two years ago when CBD first found its use in treating genetic conditions and seizures in children. CBD has been continuously proving its ultimate healing benefits since it can facilitate or even heal almost any health condition: panic attacks, insomnia, eating disorders, chronic pain, seizures, and many more.

Yet, there is an impressive amount of CBD-based products that have already come onto the market: edibles, salves, vapes, tinctures, capsules, solutions for pets, and even CBD-infused drinks. But the most popular and recognized products are CBD oils and CBD tinctures. Despite the prevalent misconception, these two are different products. What varies in the first instance is the extraction and ingestion methods: they influence the way CBD affects your body. In the following CBD oil vs. tincture review, you will discover how exactly the two products differ and what to consider when selecting one. 
CBD Oil vs. CBD Tincture

CBD Tincture vs. Oil: What Distinguishes a CBD Tincture?

What is a tincture?

If you come across a CBD oil tincture, you might get somewhat puzzled. So, first and foremost, let’s clarify what CBD tinctures are and how they are different from oils and other hemp products. Since many people confuse oil and tincture and believe there is no significant difference, it is fundamental to announce this difference once and for all. A tincture is an extract of a hemp plant which is soaked in alcohol for several weeks. As a sufficient amount of time passes, the hemp plant releases its compounds into the alcohol substance. Such essential compounds are cannabinoids, and extracting them is the purpose of the entire infusion process. To extract the cannabinoid compounds, the manufacturer filters the obtained liquid. As a result, the producer ends up with a product that is free from a leafy hemp taste. Furthermore, the product is frequently combined with vegetable glycerin and essential oils to achieve the excellent taste and appropriate consistency.

Put differently, a tincture is a CBD product that contains alcohol, does not have a bitter taste, and serves as a good additive to your favorite drink or food. In addition, it is highly bioavailable, which means that your body will experience a therapeutic effect rather quickly.

How to Use a CBD Tincture

There are several ways to apply CBD tincture. Since it is less potent than CBD oil and doesn’t have any bitter taste, you can make wide use of this product.

To begin with, you may take it sublingually. Initially, you need to shake the bottle and measure the appropriate amount of tincture with a dropper. As a rule, droppers are conveniently marked with dosage sizes so that you can easily measure out an exact amount of the product. Afterward, squeeze the tincture under the tongue and keep it there for a couple of minutes.

If you want to combine the pleasant with the useful, feel free to include the required amount of tincture in your food. To maximize the usefulness of CBD tincture, infuse your meal with nutritious high-fat food. Since CBD is fat-soluble and water-soluble, doing so will allow its essential elements to absorb a couple of times faster.

CBD Tincture vs. Oil

Ultimate Benefits of CBD tincture

According to scientific evidence, the number of benefits that CBD tincture introduces to our bodies is extensive. In terms of consumption, tinctures are also beneficial in multiple ways. [1]

Consumption benefits:

  • Light, thin consistency. Many people don’t enjoy the oily texture and the leafy taste of CBD oils. Light consistency is something that gives tinctures a winning advantage.
  • Long shelf life. If you store CBD tincture in a cool dark place, you may stay sure it won’t lose its healing properties at least during the next two years. Alcohol has a preservative function, which explains why tincture’s shelf life is longer than oils’.
  • You can add tinctures to your meal. Adding a few drops of CBD tincture to your food will never make it taste worse. What is more, it can make the taste even better.

Health benefits:

  • High bioavailability. Due to the presence of alcohol, tinctures guarantee faster CBD absorption and, thus, an immediate effect. In comparison to CBD oils, they let you experience the healing properties after several minutes.
  • A remedy against insomnia,inflammation, pain, and anxiety. CBD tincture is the best medicine for curing physical disorders. But, apart from that, CBD is perfect for improving brain activity and treating neurological conditions. [2,3]

CBD Tincture vs. Oil: How to Choose the Proper Potency?

CBD delivers the most valuable effect when you stick to a very accurate CBD dosage. But if you’re wondering whether there is any universal dosage – unfortunately, no. In 99% of cases, it isn’t very easy to find an accurate dosage. But knowing your body measures, the desired effect, and some other things can help you reach an accurate CBD potency.

Depending on your physical characteristics and the effect you expect from CBD, even a single drop difference plays a huge role. Choosing the right strength is challenging: what works perfectly for other people will not work for you. Or, vice versa, some people get zero effects from a particular dosage, but this very dosage can give you the desired anxiety and stress relief, for example. You may even get disappointed by particular products just because you failed to choose appropriate potency in some cases. To prevent such an annoying experience from happening, it is always better to choose a CBD tincture taking several factors into account. Some of the most fundamental aspects are:

  • the condition you want to treat
  • the bodyweight
  • the concentration of CBD in a bottle

Once you consider all the factors above, you can decide which potency will work best for your condition and body type. We prepared a convenient table for you to get an idea of optimal dosing.

Bodyweight/Desired effect strengthMildModerateStrong
80-149 lbs10 mg15 mg20 mg
150-230 lbs

15 mg

20 mg30 mg
231+ lbs25 mg30 mg40 mg
leaf min leaf mid leaf max
Bottom img

CBD Dosage Calculator

1
Experience Level with CBD
  • None - Mild
  • Medium
  • Severe
2
Total Body Weight (in lbs)
  • < 45
  • 46-86
  • 86 - 150
  • 151-240
  • >240
  • <45
  • 46 – 85
  • 86 – 150
  • 151-240
  • >240
  • <45
  • 46-85
  • 86-150
  • 151-240
  • >240
this calculator is for informational purposes only. Talk with your Doctor before taking CBD. Individual results vary, and in fact it is already known that individuals have wildly different results with CBD.

CBD Tincture vs. Oil: What To Choose?

Following the table, you may quickly discover which potency is best for you. First, it is good to experiment with small strengths. To fully understand how CBD influences your body, you may begin by adding 10 mg and increasing the dosage very slowly. Apparently, 10 mg isn’t enough to treat chronic pain if the latter is the case. But such a small dosage may perfectly cope with anxiety and tension, so don’t be afraid to begin at 10 mg. To make it even more comfortable, just keep in mind that you need 10 mg for every 150 lbs of bodyweight. If you are yet willing to make CBD a part of your medication routine, don’t hesitate to ask your doctor how to use CBD tincture.

CBD oil and CBD tincture differ significantly. Perhaps, the most striking difference is the taste and potency, which makes either tinctures or oils beneficial for oneself. Let’s take a look at some fundamental highlights that both products can boast of and slight drawbacks. Always check if the CBD brand has been subject to a Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warning letter. [4]

Pros and Cons of CBD Oil

Pros

  • CBD oil is more functional than tinctures. The advantage of CBD oil lies in its versatility: manufacturers use oil as the base for edible products, salves, topicals, and vape pens.
  • Oil makes it easier to produce good quality isolates. An isolate is a separate product that contains pure CBD and is highly popular on the market.
  • The oil is a highly pure product, resulting from the essential CO2 extraction method.

Cons

  • CBD oil is usually more expensive than tinctures
  • Some people find the taste of pure CBD unpleasant: oils are not flavored, and the original taste is somewhat bitter.
  • CBD oil may lose some of its essential properties when mixed into drinks or food.

CBD oil

Pros and Cons of CBD Tinctures

Pros

  • The appealing taste of tinctures allows you to get your CBD portion without mixing it with food or water.
  • Tinctures are relatively easy to create at home. Once you buy CBD oil, you can make some homemade tinctures which will last long enough
  • A CBD tincture has a higher bioavailability due to alcohol, which means you can feel the effects way faster.

Cons

  • Tinctures are not as potent as CBD oil. If you are searching for highly effective CBD products, it isn’t a good option to select a tincture
  • One cannot add tinctures to a vape device since tinctures contain alcohol.
  • CBD tinctures are less pure than CBD oils due to a different extraction method

CBD Tincture vs. Oil: What are the Fundamental Differences?

Extraction method

An extraction method is a fundamental point when we talk about the difference between CBD oils and tinctures. In essence, most of the well-established brands use CO2 extraction methods. Such an approach is deemed the cleanest since it does not leave any residue. Besides, CO2 extraction preserves a lot of useful components such as terpenes, CBD itself, and vital cannabinoids. In some cases, the products use a pressurized hot water CBD extraction method to assure the pureness of the compound. [5]

Production of CBD tinctures requires the use of alcohol as a solvent. The extraction looks in the following way: one puts a plant into alcohol for a few weeks. Afterward, this infusion is being diluted and enriched with different flavors.

Cost

The second distinctive CBD tincture vs. oil difference is the cost. Namely, CBD oils are more expensive than tinctures. Different extraction methods can explain the price difference. Even though using alcohol as a solvent is always ever longer than CO2 extraction, the latter is more costly. The reason for this is that extracting CBD requires qualified labor as well as expensive equipment. The equipment costs typically from $25.000 to $400.000, and the labor is costly as well. Therefore, since tincture extraction required substantially less money, the low consumer price stems from minimal production costs.

Taste

Not the less essential difference between CBD oil and tincture is the taste.CBD oil has a distinct leafy, bitter taste. Usually, CBD oil is free from any artificial flavors, and some people don’t enjoy the taste. But if you have nothing against a bitter herbal flavor, you may go for the oil. Unlike CBD oil, tinctures are free of the organic taste, which hasn’t yet gained recognition among a lot of CBD users. They come in a wide variety of flavors and can be added to food or drinks. Besides, tinctures do not leave any oily sensation in the mouth, particularly appealing to some people. It absorbs once you put it under the tongue.

Benefits of CBD tincture

Potency

CBD oil has a higher potency of CBD, in contrast to tinctures. Out of the entire spectrum of CBD products, CBD oil is the most potent one. Tinctures are less potent but still more bioavailable than the oil. On average, tinctures are mainly available in 250-500 mg dosage, while CBD oils can contain up to 3000 mg.

CBD Tincture vs. Oil: Final Thoughts

No matter which product you choose, both oil and tincture will give you particular health benefits. When talking about CBD tincture vs. oil, it is impossible to select the winner. This is due to CBD’s uncountable healing properties, both as an oil and a tincture. Deciding on one of the outlined products is mostly a matter of preference: some people enjoy the oily texture and a bitter taste; others like it flavored and light. If one prefers oils, it doesn’t necessarily mean the tincture is worse.

To find the product tailor-made for you, you can either refer to some product reviews or try the products on your own. Make sure you buy from a trustworthy seller and that the product is sourced and produced legally.

References:

[1] Potential Clinical Benefits of CBD-Rich Cannabis Extracts Over Purified CBD in Treatment-Resistant Epilepsy: Observational Data Meta-analysis

[2] Transdermal cannabidiol reduces inflammation and pain-related behaviors in a rat model of arthritis

[3] Translational Investigation of the Therapeutic Potential of Cannabidiol (CBD): Toward a New Age

[4] FDA

[5] Selective Extraction of Cannabinoid Compounds from Cannabis Seed Using Pressurized Hot Water Extraction

Written by:

Jamie Taylor

Jamie has more than ten years of experience as a physician assistant. He has always been interested in the healing potential of cannabidiol, especially in its pain relief properties. Jamie considers cannabidiol as a powerful remedy with minimal side effects. He knows how to help users make rational buying decisions based on the unbiased and accurate reviews of CBD products and brands.

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