What To Look For When Shopping For Hemp & CBD Products
It’s easy to feel extremely overwhelmed when shopping for hemp products because of how many options there are. We care deeply about what we put in our bodies, and we care what you put in yours, too! We’re here to help break down the hemp shopping experience.
First: the reason some companies choose to say “hemp” instead of “CBD” is because CBD is just one of the many cannabinoids found in hemp, even though CBD often is the most prominent cannabinoid found in hemp. To sum it up: hemp is a broad term for the plant. Our hemp extract that we use in each of our products contains CBD along with many other cannabinoids. Here is our list of things to look for when shopping for hemp and CBD products:
Know what type of product you are looking for
There are dozens of ways to consume or utilize hemp, such as oral oil drops/tinctures, capsules, smoking/vaping, topicals, and edibles, to name a few. Each product’s delivery method can result in different effects or lengths of time to feel those effects. For example, taking a hemp oil drop product sublingually (beneath the tongue) results in fairly quick effects in the body because this delivery method sends the hemp product straight to the bloodstream. In another example, topicals are designed to directly soothe sore muscles or achy joints and pains through the skin, so you may not notice any calming effects anywhere other than the area you applied the product. Ingesting an edible product, such as a gummy or a beverage, may not have as immediate results because edibles are processed through the stomach and the liver.
Ensure the company has openly shared their Certificate of Analysis (COA)
Our team can’t stress enough how important this step is! In 2020, the FDA completed a report that contained disturbing findings. First, 18% of the products the FDA tested in this trial contained less than 80% of the amount of CBD indicated on the label. Secondly, about half of the products tested contained levels of THC that were not accurately reported on the product’s label. What does this mean for shoppers? Buyer beware! Not everything is as it seems on a label. Do your homework and research the company: ask them for their COAs to ensure they have verified lab results from a trusted third-party lab, and don’t be afraid to ask even more questions, such as, “Where do you source your hemp?”, “Do you add any flavorings?”, “Are there any other additives?”, and “Do you have any special certifications?”. Purchase from a company that is transparent about all of these things.
Check the potency of the product
Simply put, products have varying strengths of cannabinoids, like CBD. If you are someone who has chronic pain or sleep issues, you might want a product that has a higher potency of cannabinoids. For example, an oil drop product can range in strength of CBD from 500mg to over 3,000mg, and if you know you are going to want a larger serving, it will likely be more cost-effective for you to purchase the oil drop with 3,000mg of CBD. Stronger potencies of oil drops can sometimes mean that the product has a strong hemp plant taste, so keep that in mind! For someone who is just starting to use hemp and wants a smaller serving at a slower pace, purchasing a product that has a lower amount of CBD or other cannabinoids might be the best choice. These oil drops (and other hemp products) are available in different volumes as well, so be sure to compare CBD and other cannabinoid potencies, with the product’s volume and price. Keep in mind that a shopper could always purchase products with higher potency and simply consume less of the product, and vice versa, but consider price, volume, and taste when shopping.
Inquiring about ingredients was touched on previously, but it’s worth elaboration because what you put in your body matters. We recommend always checking the ingredients label on any product you purchase. For oil drops or tinctures, the ingredients should only contain hemp extract and a carrier oil, although sometimes they may contain a flavoring agent. Research each ingredient and its potential effects.. Another example is edible products. Some baked goods or candies may contain certain allergens which should be clearly labeled (such as dairy, eggs, gluten, etc.), as well as coloring or other additives. Whether you are shopping online or in a store, the ingredients list of a product should always be accessible. We encourage you to get in the habit of reading labels and familiarizing yourself with common foods, allergens, and additives.
It can seem daunting to search for the right product and brand for you, but following these steps will simplify the process. Reach out to our team if you have any questions! firstname.lastname@example.org