First off, it should be noted that this “How To Shop” guide is intended to be just that, a guide. There is so much discussion and speculation surrounding cannabis and CBD that we thought it would be helpful to provide information on how to best shop for CBD from an industry insider’s perspective.
There are four different primary approaches we have developed as to how one can shop for the best CBD product for themselves. We have made each approach into a menu filter for our customers to use as they browse our menu: Method of Consumption, Use, Type, and Brand. Below, we will discuss the merits and details of each approach.
Shop By - Format:
This approach to shopping involves first determining how you would like to take your CBD. In other words, there are many ways (formats) to get CBD into your body and depending on why you want to take CBD, certain formats may be better than others.
- Ingestible: This refers to a CBD product that one can ingest. In other words, these are the products that you swallow and are subsequently absorbed through your stomach and intestines, like capsules and oils. We recommend products of this type if you are brand new to CBD and/or taking CBD as part of your daily routine for anxiety or general wellness. These products tend to be the least absorbable by your body and take a little bit longer for onset, as they need to work their way through your body’s digestive system. However, the effect lasts a long time and they are easy and intuitive to use and oftentimes tasty as well!
- Inhalable: These are the products that are absorbed through your lungs. The primary delivery method for inhalable CBD products is through vaporization (heating, but not combusting, the CBD and inhaling the water vapor). We recommend these types of products for those who need instantaneous relief. These products have a quick onset and high bioavailability. However, they require inhalation of smoke or vapor, and the effect does not last as long as other consumption methods.
- Topical: These products are designed to be absorbed through one’s skin. They come in all sorts of forms, including lotions, sprays, and patches. Depending on how they’re used, they can simply provide localized and surface level relief or they can provide full body relief. The primary difference in effectiveness being where the user applies the topical. If applied to a venous area of the body, it will absorb into the bloodstream and have full body relief. If applied to the area of your body where you are feeling pain (but is not a particularly vascular part of your body), the pain relief will remain highly localized. We recommend products of this sort for folks who are new to CBD and/or experiencing pain in a particular part of their body. Depending on application method, these products can be highly bioavailable, have a quick onset, and provide long lasting relief.
- Sublingual: These products are designed to be placed under one’s tongue (thin mucous membrane) and held there for about a minute before being swallowed. This allows the product to be absorbed directly into one’s bloodstream for quick and effective relief. All sublinguals can also simply be ingested if you desire. However, do be aware this will decrease their effectiveness. Sublinguals are highly effective and we recommend them for all CBD users. They have a fast onset and above average absorption and duration.
Shop By - Use:
From pain relief to help with anxiety, there are many uses for CBD. We have sorted our menu by use to make it more convenient for you if you prefer to shop for a particular effect. It’s very much worth emphasizing that all CBD products help with certain ailments, like pain, but some products are formulated to be particularly effective for certain uses. For instance, Dr. Kerklaan’s Natural Sleep Cream is formulated as a sleep aid by adding effect based terpenes and melatonin, but it also helps reduce anxiety and manage pain. When shopping by use, please keep in mind that all of our products contain CBD and regardless of what the product is called or what form it comes in, it will be useful for helping with the wide range of ailments that CBD has been shown to aid.
Shop By - Product Type:
Perhaps one of the most confusing aspects of shopping for CBD products is the different product types available in the market. From vaporizers to oils and topicals, it can all get a bit overwhelming at times. When we discuss the different product types, it’s again worth mentioning that all of our products contain CBD, but the type of product you choose can impact your CBD experience. We formulated our ‘product types’ to make as much sense as possible to you. However, it’s important to understand that there are a surprising number of monikers that manufacturers give to their products. For instance, oils, sprays, drops, and tinctures are often used interchangeably! Below, we’ll go over all the product types of menu distinguishes between.
- Oils / Tinctures / Drops / Sprays: We categorized these four types together because these are often used to describe essentially the same thing, an oil based CBD liquid suspension. They might differ in the packaging they come in (dropper bottles vs spray bottles), but they are all of the same family. Also, there might be some overlap in method of consumption, with some of these products being both ingestible and sublingual. This type product is typically not pre-dosed. In other words, you’ll have to read the bottle and determine your own dose.
- Capsules: This product type is pretty clear cut. Capsules come in many different formulations but are always pre-dosed and deliver a very consistent experience with great ease of use.
- Edibles: Edibles are ingestible CBD products that usually take the form of food. In other words, you can dose yourself with CBD and get some sustenance at the same time.
- Topicals / Transdermals: Topicals and transdermals are meant to be applied directly to your skin. They are typically used for pain relief but can serve many different uses. The difference between topicals and transdermals is a little murky. In general, a product labeled as a transdermal has been formulated to penetrate deep into your skin to get into your bloodstream. That said, just because a topical isn’t labeled as a ‘transdermal’ doesn’t mean it cannot have the same effect. The most important thing to keep in mind with topicals and transdermals is that where you apply them makes all the difference. If you put them on a venous area of your body (where you can see veins), it will penetrate your bloodstream and have a systemic effect, whereas if you put them on a non-venous area, they will typically provide a localized effect.
- Vaporizers: Vaporizers are inhalable CBD products that have an immediate and short lasting effect. They are formulated for a variety of uses.
- Vegan: A rather self explanatory menu, all products in this category are vegan-friendly and have not been made using any animal-based ingredients.
Shop By - Brand:
In addition to the above ways of shopping for CBD products, one of the most popular is to shop by brand. We take great care in evaluating different products and brands before adding them to our menu to ensure that every product on our menu is truly worthy of being there. One of our most commonly given pieces of advice is to buy what you feel most comfortable with. If you’ve tried one product from Brand X, there’s a strong likelihood that you’ll enjoy their other products as well.
Every brand is unique in their own way. Some put emphasis on using only organic ingredients while others highlight ease of use, while others yet focus on providing the best value (dollars per milligram of CBD) possible. Each brand has its own merits and we would encourage you to read up on each of them!