Historically, using cannabis concentrates was a complicated endeavour, requiring a dab rig (which looked like a bong) and some know-how on how to get the most out of the equipment.
With innovations in technology, along with experimentation on the uses of cannabinoids in general, there is no longer a need for bulky glassware.
People are becoming wise to the fact a pure CBD concentrate can fast deliver a rapid and potent dose…Finding your inner zen has never been easier!
So, what are CBD crystals and how can we use them?
What are CBD crystals
In a nutshell, they are a purified form of CBD which often consists of 97-99% cannabidiol, with all terpenes, flavonoids and other plant matter removed. All that’s left is crystals (also known as shatter), which are THC free, tasteless and odourless.
The only difference between the crystals and powder is the consistency of the end product.
Extracted in-house from Colorado-grown Hemp and Cannabis-derived terpenes for flavor. Full panel third-party testing at a batch level also comes as standard.
CBD shatter looks like glass, and when it breaks, it turns into a crystalline powder, which is better known as CBD Isolate.
However, all three are the same thing, just in different physical forms, often attributed to the extraction method used.
Unfortunately, when CBD is isolated it contains none of the other compounds found in cannabis which work synergistically with cannabinoids.
However, as CBD crystals are naturally tasteless, they easily infuse with terpenes for added flavour and effect.
Terpsolate is a nickname for terpene infused CBD Isolate. Made from CBD crystals and often food grade terpenes, extracted from natural sources.
How to use CBD crystals – 7 Suggestions
CBD crystals are already decarboxylated via the manufacturing process, meaning they don’t need heat to become activated. As a result, there are several ways to use them outside of a dab rig!
Either way, you need a precise set of scales. Given an average dose is in the low milligram range, eyeballing it can be difficult and scales make things much simpler.
In the worst case, you will use more than you need to and end up much more relaxed than you might have hoped for!
Let’s dive into the 7 most common ways to use them.
Mellow out the effects of THC
If you already use cannabis, you probably know THC levels have increased exponentially across the last 20 years. This has come at the expense of CBD, with the broader availability of super-high THC cannabis, nicknamed skunk weed, for its pungent smell and aroma.
Recent UK data suggests the average cannabis buds exceed 14% THC, and in the US the numbers are often significantly higher, due to the availability of legal and high THC cannabis.
In legal cannabis states, the availability of legal THC concentrates has created a new set niche of products which exceed 90% THC and 0% CBD. These are extremely potent forms of THC, and those uninitiated with them can easily feel out of their depth using them.
Fortunately, research suggests CBD can counteract the adverse effects associated with THC, and overall mellow out the high. Sprinkling CBD powder onto a joint, or combining CBD crystals with a THC concentrate could help make the high less intense.
It sounds like you might need to wave your hands in the air and cue some music for the dabbing dance, but dabbing CBD doesn’t involve a dance!
In short, it refers to heating a concentrate to a temperature where it (usually) vapourizes and is inhaled using either a
The only real difference between vaping and dabbing is that vaping uses conduction or convection heating. Vaping has more accurate temperature control, so you never reach a point of combustion.
Dabbing, however, has been a long much longer than vaping.
Old school dab rigs include glassware which would look fitting in a weed accessories shop. They require a high heat blow torch to turn a quartz heating element red hot, onto which the ‘dab’ is placed and then inhaled, often via a pipe.
These devices can easily overheat, leading to combustion and potential carcinogens released into the inhaled vapour.
Fortunately, dabbing has come a long way, and you can now buy electronic dab rigs or pens which have temperature control. Check out our post about the best dab pens available today to find the right device for you.These devices avoid any issues around combustion and operate in the same way vape pens do. A firm favorite among dabbers is the Puffco Peak.
Make your own edibles
Dosing CBD, is a black box for many of us. Creating edibles with concentrates is easy as can weigh out your CBD crystals and add it to a recipe, knowing its pretty much 100% pure, so your sure about how much is in what you make!
Also, you can sprinkle the crystals on like fairy dust without a need to heat or cook anything. It can be as simple as adding it to a no-bake recipe you already enjoy.
Although, be aware that edibles can take much longer to kick in, usually the longest onset of all consumption methods.
As edibles have to pass through your digestive system, most of the CBD is lost due to an effect called first pass metabolism, and only a small amount of it reaches the bloodstream.
You can learn more on optimal consumption methods to improve CBD absorption via our post on bioavailability.
If you’ve got a favourite lotion you already use, adding crushed up CBD powder to it could be right up your street!
Weigh out the crystals and add to your lotion make a DIY CBD cream. Combine with essential oils for a deeper aroma and sense of calm.
Although, the more complex CBD topicals are engineered with other components which work synergistically with the compound for a more effective end product, and these can be difficult to re-create at home.
Under the tongue
Concentrates are active from the get-go, and you can place a small (weighed) amount under your tongue to absorb via the membranes under the tongue.
As sublingual consumption is the second most effective way to use CBD, this method is usually preferred by those who don’t want to vape or dab.
Diluted in a carrier oil
Have you ever come across a CBD Isolate oil? These are a carrier oil with CBD crystalline diluted in it, with a pipette to match!
These can be created at home easily by using olive oil as the carrier. You can use hemp seed oil or MCT oil. But these are less frequently found in most kitchens!
It takes five simple steps to make this type of CBD oil at home
Weigh out the crystals via a milligram accurate scale and crush them into a powder using a pestle and mortar or an equivalent device.
- Add the carrier oil to a 10ml or 30ml bottle with a pipette (you can buy these online or recycle one you purchased from a CBD oil you purchased).
- Add the powder to a specific amount of carrier oil for the strength you want to create in your preferred bottle size and close the lid. For example, add 1 gram of CBD powder to 10ml of carrier oil for a 1000mg (10%) CBD oil.
- Heat up some water on a stove, up to around 60c (140f) and add the bottle of oil you have created into this hot water bath (half submerged). Leave for 10 minutes, ensuring the temperature is stable at around 60c.
- Remove the bottle from the hot water bath, shake slowly and take a glance to see if the CBD powder has dissolved into the carrier oil (it should have, if not then repeat the previous process).Optionally, you can also add terpenes or other essential oils into your bottle to create an oil tailored for you!
Added to your favourite vape oil or create your own CBD vape juice
If you are already vaping e liquids, its simple to add CBD to your vape juice too!
You do need a nicotine free e juice. Otherwise, you will need to buy a specific vape additive to avoid any issues with dilution (CBD and nicotine don’t mix well).
All you need to do is weigh out the crystals, crush them into a powder and add them to your bottle of vape juice, lightly warm the juice in a hot water batch and let the crystals dissolve. Insert the e liquid as usual into your vape, and off you go!
- Creating your own CBD vape oil isn’t as difficult as it might initially sound, just follow the steps below and you will be good to go!
- Weigh out 1g of CBD crystals (this can apply to other concentrates too, like crumble) and crush your concentrate into a fine powder. You could use a pestle and mortar, or go old school and crush it with your fingers.
- Add to the CBD concentrate to 10ml of your preferred base liquid in a small bottle (vegetable glycerin known as VG and/or propylene glycol known as PG). The ratio of your VG/PG mix is a personal preference but most traditional ejuices use a 50/50 split. If you haven’t vaped before, try out a 50/50 split with a test amount of 0.5ml VG and 0.5ml PG (also drop your concentrate absolute amount to 0.1g), this way you can trial it and see how you get on.
- Heat up a saucepan of water to around 60c and give your bottle a hot water bath for 5-10 minutes, ensure your bottle is only half submerged under the water, so you can take the bottle out without touching the water!
- Let the liquid cool down and add terpenes for natural flavor – don’t exceed 0.5ml terpenes per 10ml of base liquid.
- Give your bottle a shake (with the lid on!) and then add the CBD vape juice to your vape cartridge or tank!