Guide to CBD Vape Oils
CBD is a non-psychoactive, natural chemical compound that comes from the cannabis plant. Unlike THC, it doesn’t get you high, but it does provide relief for a large range of health issues, from mild anxiety and depression to severe epilepsy and joint pain.
This unique combination—the ability to provide relief without the “high” of marijuana—makes CBD attractive to many seeking alternative, all-natural treatments for their health problems.
CBD itself can be ingested in many forms. You can apply drops of CBD beneath your tongue as a sublingual tincture, or massage CBD creams into the skin. You can eat CBD as well, by adding drops to your food or drink, or eating CBD gummies and other edibles.
A large number of CBD users prefer CBD vape oils. Inhaled through a vape pen, these are one of the fastest-acting and better-tasting ways to consume CBD oil. Below we’ll review everything you need to know about CBD vape oils, from how they work to finding the right dosage. Finally, we’ll review the best CBD vape oil brands.
What Is CBD Vape Oil?
You’ve likely seen people using vape pens or vaporizers. These e-cigarettes have caught on in the smoking community as a safer way to inhale nicotine without many of the toxic chemicals found in cigarettes, like tar and butane. They’re also easier to manage and use, removing the need to carry around a box of cigarettes.
Vaping has earned similar favor among marijuana users. While the vapes marijuana users use do not contain nicotine, they are still preferred among many for their convenience. Rather than having to roll a joint or carry around multiple components, a vape pen is small and discreet, and easily fits in one’s pocket.
Now, with the rise in popularity of CBD, CBD vape pens are becoming a favorite option among people who take CBD for health and relaxation. CBD vape oils allow people to quickly inhale and start receiving the benefits of CBD. However, they do not contain any nicotine or THC. CBD vape oils contain CBD, along with natural flavoring and a base (usually a mix of vegetable glycerin and propylene glycol).
This base is needed for a couple of reasons. For one, it enables a consistent amount of CBD to be present throughout the liquid, ensuring you receive a consistent dose with each inhale. For another, it prevents the CBD vape oil from getting stuck in your device and clogging it.
CBD Isolate vs. Full-Spectrum CBD
Like most CBD products, CBD vape oils are available in CBD isolate and full-spectrum forms. This refers to the presence of other cannabinoids in the product. When CBD is extracted from the hemp plant, other cannabinoids will be present, such as CBDV, CBDA, and small amounts of THC. When the CBD oil is sold in this form, it is known as “full-spectrum.” Some people prefer full-spectrum products, as they believe the presence of multiple cannabinoids enables the CBD oil to be more effective. It is important to note that even with full-spectrum CBD oil, the amount of THC will be quite small (0.3% or less), so these oils will not create a feeling of being stoned.
However, some people prefer to have absolutely no THC in their product. For these folks, CBD isolates are the better choice. With these oils, the CBD undergoes an additional filtration step during which all other cannabinoids are removed, leaving only a pure form of CBD behind.
How Do CBD Vape Pens Work?
If you have never vaped before, you may be wondering how these devices work. A vape pen uses a battery-powered heating element, called an atomizer, to quickly heat your CBD vape oil to 400 degrees Fahrenheit, transforming it into a vapor for you to inhale. Depending on your vape pen, it will automatically turn on the atomizer whenever you inhale, or you will need to hold down a button as you do so.
The vape pen will have either a tank or a place for you to insert a vape cartridge. The type of CBD vape product With the tank, you will add your CBD vape oil directly into the tank. With a cartridge, you’ll need to switch out the cartridges once they’re used up.
With a refillable vape pen, you can recharge the battery via USB like you would a smartphone. You’ll need to clean the tank regularly, or, if your pen uses cartridges, replace them as needed.
There are also disposable vape pens, which contain the battery, atomizer and a pre-filled vape cartridge, and are designed to be thrown away once that cartridge is used (as opposed to refilled with a new cartridge). These offer less flexibility, and can be more wasteful in the long-term. However, they’re a good, low-cost way to try out different vape flavors, or introduce yourself to vaping CBD in the first place.
A quick note on terminology:
It’s common to see the terms CBD vape oils, vape juice, and e-liquids used interchangeably. Here’s what they mean:
- CBD vape oils, sometimes referred to as CBD vape juice or CBD e-liquid, describes CBD oils that have been developed specifically to be vaporized and inhaled. You will add drops of the CBD vape oil to your vape pen before using it.
- CBD e-liquids can also refer specifically to pre-filled CBD vape cartridges. Rather than adding the CBD vape oil to the cartridge in your vape pen, the cartridge comes pre-filled and simply needs to be inserted into your vape pen.
Benefits of CBD Vape Oils
Whether you use CBD vape oil or another type of CBD product, you will experience the same health benefits of CBD. These include:
- Relief from arthritis or other chronic pain
- Reduced inflammation
- Anxiety and depression relief
- Better sleep, especially for individuals with insomnia
- Reduction in muscle spasms and seizures for those with MS or epilepsy
- Better skin, particularly for those with acne or psoriasis
- Nausea relief for cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy
- Reduced withdrawal symptoms for individuals recovering from opioid or nicotine addiction
Why Do People Vape CBD?
If you can enjoy the same health benefits, why do some people choose to use CBD vape oils over another type of product? It’s mostly a matter of personal preference.
Some people simply prefer the sensation of inhaling CBD, as opposed to eating it or using a topical. The flavors of CBD vape oils presents an additional perk. Since it is derived from hemp, CBD has a natural earthy flavor that many don’t find palatable. CBD vape oils mask this flavor with something much more pleasant, like vanilla or mint.
CBD vape oils are also easy to use, especially if you’re someone who already vapes. But even if you’ve never vaped before, it’s easy to get the hang of it. You simply add a few drops of the CBD vape oil into your tank, or insert a pre-filled cartridge, and then inhale slowly.
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, CBD vape oils offer fast-acting relief. When you inhale CBD through a vape pen, the CBD enters your bloodstream directly through your lungs. As a result, you’ll begin to feel the effects almost immediately. This makes vaping CBD a preferred option for many users who require quick relief, such as a cancer patient dealing with the onset of nausea, or an individual with anxiety who just encountered a trigger.
However, there is one, not insignificant downside to using CBD vape oil. Although the effects are felt almost immediately, they last much shorter with inhalation than with other types of CBD products. When you inhale CBD, the effects may last only 2 to 3 hours, as opposed to 4+ hours you’ll enjoy with other methods. This means that, depending on your condition, you may need to take another dose of vape CBD oil more frequently than you would with another method.
Can CBD Vape Oil Get You High?
No, as long as the CBD vape oil is sourced from hemp, not marijuana. The majority of CBD vape oils are sourced from industrial hemp, which naturally contains higher concentrations of CBD and low amounts of psychoactive THC, 0.3% or less.
However, CBD oil can also be sourced from marijuana,. Marijuana contains higher amounts of THC, typically between 5% to 20%. As a result, CBD vape oils derived from marijuana may also contain higher amounts of THC, and perhaps lower amounts of CBD. This can be problematic for people who don’t want to experience the high of THC. Moreover, these products are not legal everywhere in the U.S.
For these reasons, we recommend purchasing CBD vape oils sourced from hemp. These will not get you high, will be legal no matter where you live in the U.S., and will contain higher amounts of beneficial CBD.
How Much CBD Should You Take?
The amount of CBD you need to take depends on your personal body chemistry, the severity of the condition you’re using it for, and your body weight. The general recommendation is to take between 1mg to 6mg for every 10 pounds of your body weight, and to start with the lowest dose (e.g. if you weigh 150 pounds, you would start with 15mg of CBD). You can find a CBD dosing guide here.
You can gradually increase your dose until you find one that’s effective for you. Then, you can stop, as people don’t develop a tolerance to CBD.
CBD vape oils come in a range of concentrations, from 75mg to 3,000mg. Often, this describes the total amount of CBD oil in the bottle or cartridge, so you’ll need to translate that into the amount of CBD per milliliter.
You’ll also need to know the capacity of your vape cartridge in milligrams. Then, you can calculate the total amount of CBD you could take, by multiplying the capacity of your cartridge (in ml) by the concentration of your CBD per ml. For example, if your vape cartridge holds 2ml, and you fill it with a CBD vape oil that contains 15mg of CBD per ml, the entire cartridge will have 30mg of CBD. To receive that dose, you would need to vape the entire cartridge.
This is one of the underrated benefits of using CBD vape oil. You can easily adjust your dose by changing how much CBD vape oil you add to the cartridge, allowing for variable dosing depending on how severe your condition feels that day.
Can CBD Vape Oils Help You Stop Smoking?
Possibly. For many smokers, the habitual act of smoking is part of what makes the addiction so hard to break. Vaping CBD, even though it contains no THC or nicotine, can help these smokers quit by reducing their depending on nicotine, while enabling them to still partake in the physical action of smoking.
Further, some promising studies suggest CBD can actually help reduce the cravings for nicotine among smokers trying to quit. In one study, smokers were given an inhaler of CBD or a placebo, and told to use the inhaler whenever they felt the urge to smoke. By the end of one week, participants with the CBD inhaler had reduced the number of cigarettes they smoked by 40%, compared with no change whatsoever among the placebo group.
How to Buy CBD Vape Oil Safely
CBD oils are a newer industry, and they’re not yet regulated by the FDA. As such, the onus is on you to do a bit of research to ensure that you’re purchasing a safe CBD vape oil. Follow these steps to do just that.
Only buy CBD oils designed for vaping.
Because both CBD oils and and CBD vape oils contain the word “oil,” some people think they can be used interchangeably. They shouldn’t be.
CBD oils usually refers to oil tinctures, which are designed to be added to food or drink or placed in drops sublingually under the tongue. They are not designed to be vaporized and inhaled.
As for whether CBD vape oils can be used like CBD oil tinctures, technically, they can. However, the will not be as effective as using CBD oil tinctures. For best results, only vape CBD oils that were designed to be vaped.
Only buy from trusted manufacturers.
As a newer industry, CBD oil isn’t subject to the kind of regulation that keeps consumers safe. That’s why it’s important to buy from trusted manufacturers.
Purchase from companies who source their CBD from 100% organic industrial hemp grown in the USA. They should also use third-party labs to test the concentration of CBD in their vape oils, as well as the safety of the other ingredients.
This point is particularly important for CBD vape oils. A recent study found that of 84 CBD products sold online, only about a third were labeled accurately when it came to the concentration of CBD. Worse, THC was detected in over 20% of the products. Problematically, the CBD products most prone to inaccurate labeling were vape oils.
Congratulations—you’re already taking this step by reading this guide. Read reviews of any CBD vape oils you’re considering purchasing, and see what other users have to say. Did they find them effective for the same conditions you’d like to use the CBD for?
If you don’t find what you’re looking for from the reviews, ask questions in online forums like the CBD subreddit.
Talk with your doctor.
It is very rare to experience any side effects when using CBD (yet another of the many benefits of this natural therapy). However, when they do happen, they’re usually among people who are taking other medications.
These side effects can range from unpleasant to dangerous, and may include tiredness, nausea, diarrhea, dry mouth, or changes in blood pressure or weight. If you’re taking other medication, check with your doctor before starting a CBD regimen so you can avoid these side effects.
Children and pregnant and breastfeeding women should also avoid CBD. Not enough research has been done into the safety of CBD among these populations.
Are you planning to vape CBD to help relieve a particular issue? Review the medical research on CBD and discover the best CBD oils for your needs:
If you’re not sure vape oils are right for you, or you’re simply interested in exploring other types of CBD products, you can learn more at the links below: