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What Is Live Resin – The Champagne Of Cannabis Concentrates

Since you’re here, you’re probably a ganjanaut, and I probably don’t need to tell you about the power of terpenes, nor of the synergies of the compounds found in cannabis plants. 

But in this era of technological innovation, it’s easy to miss the raw power of the plant when your puffing away on a distillate cart with a magic formulation of isolated cannabinoids and, most probably, re-introduced terps. 

Forget all that jazz. That’s so 2017. 

Today, we’re going back to the whole plant. Discussing live resin extraction processes that allow for canna magic to occur.  What magic exactly? Well, you’re going to have to keep reading to find out. 

Learn what is live resin, what it is NOT, and why it hits the sweet spot for terpene concentration.

Live Resin dab Illustration

Keep Blazing, It’s Amazing: What Is Live Resin?

Often referred to as the champagne of cannabis concentrates, canna enthusiasts revere live resin, and yes, even those who refuse to dip their toe into regular concentrates. 

Live resin is a highly concentrated form of cannabis that keeps the terpene profile intact, exactly as found in the buds of the plant. 

Quick recap: Terpenes are the essential oils secreted by the cannabis plant’s glands.

It’s derived from cannabis flower that has been frozen immediately after harvest, and thus skipping the step of drying and curing – in which some terps are immediately lost or, at the very least, degraded. 

This way, you end up with a form of concentrate which naturally contains a much higher terpene concentration, with the exact profile mirroring the plant it’s been extracted from. 

Meaning?

Flavor like no other. It crushes your regular wax, shatter, or any other dabs you’ve probably had. 

So, when we’re defining what live resin is, we’re talking about a connoisseur-level product containing only the highest quality cannabis material. 

What’s The Secret Of Live Resin’s Flavorsome Majesty?

As noted above, some terpenes are lost during the drying and curing processes. But, the extraction of live resin makes it possible to preserve the terpene profiles as found in the plants when in bloom. 

These aromatic molecules form together with phytocannabinoids in the plant’s trichomes. No wonder why trichomes are called “natural cell factories.”

Yup, THC and CBD are born thanks to the very same glands that produce terpenes.

Terps are responsible for the unique, complex flavor profile of each strain. They are also intricately related to the multilayered marijuana experience.

That’s because terpenes are thought to bring about a wide plethora of potential extended benefits via the entourage effect. 

So, what’s the feeling you get with live resin?

Picture yourself dabbing away on a cannabis concentrate which tastes just like the buds smell, with potency which rivals any shatter or wax you’ve had in terms of effect. Yup, it’s better than the flavor and aroma from vaping. 

With potency often exceeding 90%, you don’t need much to reach somewhere high up in the ganja aromas-laced heaven… There where the live resin experience can take us. [Inserting mouth-watering vibes before we proceed].

Dabbing concentrate

The Curing & Resin Extraction Process: How Is Live Resin Made?

As a rule of thumb, all cannabis products require quality plant matter to start with.

Once the plant material is harvested, it goes through drying and curing.

Drying and curing are crucial steps of preserving the active compounds.

The thing is, as soon as the crops are harvested, degradation begins. That’s an all-natural process. It has to do with aerobic bacteria and enzymes, breaking down excess starches and sugars.

Now, here’s another incredible thing about the marijuana plant.

It’s the process of creating invaluable cannabis compounds (aka cannabinoid synthesis). This process continues even after harvest!

Ultimately, freshly harvested flowers must be stored at the proper temperatures and humidity levels. Thus, the cannabinoids will continue working behind the scenes. They will keep transforming from acids such as THCa and CBDa, into active phytocannabinoids. 

Here is where things get really interesting.

To craft live resin, experts invented a brand new, high-tech, cut-edge extraction technique.

Instead of drying and curing the flower, they freeze the plant material straight away. To achieve this, experts subject the freshly chopped cannabis plant matter to subcritical temperatures.

Oh yes, these temps are much BELOW the regular freezing temps aka no-you-can’t-use-your-kitchen-refrigerator-for-such-purposes.

Note that the starting plant material for live resin includes fresh flower buds and sugar leaves. 

The stems, and other less cannabinoid-heavy, non-aerial plant parts, are not used for the extraction of live resin.

Ultimately, live resin extraction bypasses both the drying and the curing process.

And so, the flash-freezing extraction process allows complete protection from degradation of the active compounds. All the trichomes and terpenes remain intact at the highest concentrations.

What’s The Difference Between Resin and Rosin? 


Rosin is also a type of concentrate crafted from the freshly chopped parts of the cannabis plant via a rosin press.

Rosin is crafted by applying pressure and heat

Live resin concentrates extraction techniques employ a solvent, like butane hash oil.

It is possible to make rosin without too much fancy equipment. Sure, a rosin press will do great. Yet, some users seem to get creative and go for the homemade rosin press musings.

The Butane hash oil (BHO) extraction process isn’t a “home alone” sort of endeavor. It requires specific equipment and knowledge.

In summary, rosin is considered a more natural alternative to solvent extraction.

But studies highlight that health risks associated with BHO are mostly related to amateur “blasting” methods. Nonetheless, if you give this a try, do this at your own risk!

Also, a quality BHO must undergo a post-purging process. This removes any residual solvents from the end product. 

Check out our deep dive into rosin vs resin to learn more.

Quick Mental Floss: How Live Resin Concentrates Were Born

2013 Throwback.

The invention of live resin is attributed to William “Kind Bill” Fenger. Fenger is a Colorado native who’s been into cannabinoid extractions since 1980. 

Fenger’s team consisted of a group of passionate growers and extractors. The cannabis enthusiasts were guided by passion and vision.

They were looking into creating a never-seen-before nectar collector. A special butane extractor.

This revolutionary piece of equipment had to go beyond traditional butane extraction processes.

The goal was to have a functioning extractor that can also maintain very low temperatures. All for the sake of keeping the plant matter frozen.

Cannabis extracts that skip the curing process?! This used to sound like a distant fantasy.

But not anymore. And here we are today. The first generations to witness the rise of cannabis extraction technologies. 

What about the name of the new canna-game? 

Live resin concentrate.

The hot news? A live resin product allows experts to concentrate the superpowers of cannabis plants in new, interesting ways.

High terpene content, incredible flavors, purity, and consistency of the final product.

Sounds like a yummy and genius ride. 

live resin 1g

Meet The Cannabis Plant Flavors: What’s Live Resin Sauce?

Quintessentially, it’s a form of live resin.

Live sauce is also known as “terp sauce.” This type of cannabis concentrate is very high in terpenes. That’s why it is referred to as a High terpene extract (HTE).

When an extract’s content features high levels of terpenes and low levels of cannabinoids, it’s called High Terpene Extract (HTE).

On the other hand, products with mostly crystals and a small amount of terpenes are called High Cannabinoid Extract (HCE).

And so, this saucy cannagemstone offers unparalleled flavor and aromas.

Like live extracts, this product is extracted from marijuana plants immediately frozen after harvest.

It’s often described as the most flavorsome among any other form of ganja extract product on the market. Yes, it pretty much feels like you are smoking the living plant itself.

You can consume it just like other concentrates. The major difference from “ordinary” live resins?

Ultimately, it packs a deeper punch of flavor than other live resins. The aroma and flavor are, oh well, as high as they can get. 

How To Consume Live Resin

You can use a vaporizer, a vape cartridge, or a dab pen to consume live resin.

You can also add it to your joint or blunt. At least theoretically. 

This method wastes a lot of the product. So, it’s not very budget-friendly considering the pricey concentrate live resin available for sale.

Live Resin Carts In A Nutshell

These are your regular vape carts. But instead of distillate, they contain live resin.

This is considered the most flavorful kind of vape cart on the market. 

Why?

Because terps are naturally and exclusively cannabis-derived.

Live resin concentrate preserves the terps from the flower it has been extracted from. Thus, there is no need for reintroducing botanical terpenes.

Cannabis-derived terps offer a full range of complex nuances that tingle the palate. Only the cannabis plant produces a symphony of terps at such high levels.

So, yes, live resins are way tastier to pull on than a disty cart!

Live Resin Dabs: Awesome Hacks To Submerse In The Flavors While Avoiding The Traps

Usually, live resin is dark yellow in color. Typically, consistency falls between wax and sauce. It tends to be looser than other concentrates.

Ultimately, some live resins have a runny consistency. Others may be more waxy or solid in texture.

Dabbing Resin Illustration



As a rule of thumb….
The more terpenes, the runnier the concentrate.

Most cannabisseurs dab live resin. This way of consumption requires a dab rig and an e-nail or a torch. Also, you need a suitable dab tool to handle the concentrate and place it in the nail.

A good nail temperature is around 550°F. This temp level preserves the terpenes and flavors. Meanwhile, it doesn’t scorch the concentrate.

With a dab pen (aka vape pen’s close relative), you simply put the concentrate into it.

Live Resin vs. Shatter: A Short`n`Sweet Breakdown

Both shatter and live resin are solvent extracts. 

The main difference?

It’s the flower harvesting process.

Experts use dried cannabis to produce shatter.

Now, a word of caution. Low-quality shatter products are often made from trimmed or old bud.

With live resin concentrates production, it takes only the freshest cannabis possible. As soon as the plant material is picked, it’s flash-freezed.

Abracadabra.

Hello, tantalizing, delectable terpenes. Hello, you out worldly flavor.

How To Store Live Resin

Keep live resin cannabis products away from heat, light, moisture, and air.

This way, you’ll increase longevity and keep quality intact.

It is best to store live resin in a light-proof glass container. Place the container in the refrigerator. Avoid storing at room temperature to make handling easy.