When considering trying Cannabidiol (CBD) for the first time, the abundance of choices can make picking a product seem daunting. The CBD landscape has grown exponentially in recent years and will likely continue this explosive trajectory. From CBD isolate vs. full-spectrum oil to topical vs. ingestible, the choices are boundless.
Bluebird Botanicals is here to help to simplify the process of seeking the best CBD product for you. Customer satisfaction and transparency are two of our top priorities. We want our customers to not only be happy with our products but also be empowered by knowing exactly what they are putting into their bodies.
We’ll start with exploring CBD isolate vs. full-spectrum CBD oil.
For starters, CBD isolate and full-spectrum CBD oil have completely different sensory experiences. CBD isolate comes as a highly purified crystalline extract that is odorless and flavorless. In this context, purified doesn’t mean that CBD isolate is in any way superior to other products in the sphere – it simply means that CBD is the only cannabinoid present.
In contrast, full-spectrum CBD oil usually comes in tincture format from a dropper bottle. Full-spectrum oils can vary in color from a deep amber to a bright green and often have a bright, earthy taste. “Full-spectrum” means that many other phytocannabinoids, including CBC, CBG, CBG-A, CBC-A, and CBN, are found alongside CBD in the product. These CBD oils also contain other natural molecules such as amino acids, carbohydrates, vitamins, omega fatty acids, and trace minerals.
Both CBD isolate and full-spectrum CBD oil can be ingested directly. Both isolate and full-spectrum are typically derived from hemp. Neither product produces psychoactive effects.
Let’s dive deeper.
As we touched on, CBD isolate differs from full-spectrum CBD oil in that it only contains CBD without the presence of other cannabinoids or plant compounds. Isolates usually start as a full-spectrum hemp extract. They are then run through a distillation process using a carefully-controlled temperature inside a sealed environment to evaporate and separate the desired cannabinoid. Scientists often use cannabinoid isolates, including CBD isolate, in research to help determine the exact effect of each individual cannabinoid, compared to their effect as a whole.
CBD isolate can be likened to a vitamin or supplement. While vitamins and supplements can be important additions to the daily diet, the whole plant or food they are derived from is often the better alternative. With whole plants, all of the components present can work together to produce a more significant result.
Conversely, a single vitamin – or CBD isolate – can offer a more targeted approach. CBD isolate can also be a way to complement your existing CBD intake.
Full-spectrum CBD oil & “the entourage effect”
A full-spectrum CBD oil contains the entire spectrum of chemicals present in the hemp plant, leaving out only inert plant matter like cellulose. This extract includes a wide variety of plant compounds, often called “phytochemicals,” such as flavonoids1, terpenes2, vitamins, omega fatty acids, and the full naturally-occuring cannabinoid profile.
Full-spectrum CBD aligns with the idea that whole plants support whole people. The use of the entire plant rather than an isolated active ingredient allows the myriad of essential components to work in conjunction with one another in a more natural and impactful way. This idea is referred to as the “entourage effect.”
The entourage effect posits that utilizing whole, natural plants – or full-spectrum CBD oil – allows for the natural synergy to improve how these ingredients interact with our bodies. Much in the same way that people in a community can work together to produce a result far beyond each of their individual capabilities, full-spectrum CBD oil allows all of the cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids in hemp to work as a team to impact the endocannabinoid system. Essentially, the whole plant is potentially greater than the sum of its parts.
So…how do I know what is right for me?
In most cases, a first-timer who is interested in exploring plant extracts as a wellness option would be better served by the entire spectrum than they would by an individual cannabinoid.
Most of Bluebird’s core product line contains full-spectrum hemp extracts. Our most popular CBD oil, Hemp Classic, is a full-spectrum extract blended with organic cold-pressed hemp seed oil from Canada. The Hemp Complete blend contains both heated cannabinoids (CBD) and raw cannabinoids (CBDA). CBDA, otherwise known as cannabidiolic acid, is the raw and unheated cannabinoid which is then added to extra virgin olive oil along with additional terpenes extracted using a gentle steam process. Finally, our Hemp Signature contains a full-spectrum hemp extract blended with frankincense and black cumin seed oil and emulsified in organic cold-pressed hemp seed oil.
Bluebird does offer CBD isolate for sale and CBD vape juice containing only CBD isolate. Additionally, our new THC-Free* CBD oil, a product created with civil servants, athletes, and customers with THC sensitivities in mind, allows for users to enjoy CBD without the potential complications of THC.
Check back on Bluebird’s blog in the coming weeks for parts two and three in this series, where we will tackle CBD capsules vs. oils and ingestibles vs. topicals.
Still have questions? Bluebird’s customer care team is here to help. Call (720) 726-5132 or email [email protected] to talk with one of the flock.
1. Flavonoids serve many functions in different plants and they can take many forms. Commonly, they’re responsible for pigment effects that determine the color of flowers. They’re also known to attract pollinating insects. Blueberries, black tea, bananas, and dark chocolate all contain high amounts of flavonoids.
2. Terpenes are the compounds all around us in nature that give the familiar smells to many plants like pine trees or lavender. Scientists theorize that terpenes are used by plants to communicate with insects as well as repel predators. They have also been studied for their effects on the human body.