Does CBD Smell Like Weed? What Does It Smell Like?



Does CBD Smell Like Weed?

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Let’s get into a popular question that has come up a lot lately: does CBD smell like weed?

Did you know that many people are turned away from marijuana, not because of the psychoactive effects – but because of the smell?

TLDR:
Yes, CBD can smell like weed. This is because it comes from the same plant species, and has many of the same terpenes which affect the smell of the plant.

While many people enjoy the smell of weed, even more do not like that distinct smell. All of the different spectrums, like broad spectrum, full spectrum, or even CBD isolates, also make the potential smells even more confusing to think about. CBD Isolate? What does CBD isolate smell like?

For this reason, I want to take time to address the smell of hemp-based CBD, and compare it to the smell of marijuana.

Does CBD Smell Like Weed?

First things first: it is going to be a challenge to write an engaging blog article about certain types of smells. I’ll try my best to describe the smells of some CBD products, so hang with me 🙂

So, does CBD smell like weed or what? Yes, it definitely can. This is due to the fact that both compounds come from the same plant species, and therefore have similar terpenes.

You see, CBD is a cannabinoid located within the cannabis plant family. Hemp and marijuana are almost an identical plant, with the exception of the THC content.

By federal law, hemp must contain less than 0.3% of THC while marijuana can have in excess of 30% or even more. There is no limit for marijuana.

In fact, hemp was illegal for a LONG TIME in the United States. The Farm Bill of 2018 actually decriminalized hemp and hemp-based products, as long as they contained less than 0.3% of THC.

You’re probably thinking, “Ok Dale, that’s great, but what does this have to do with the smell?”

Well, since both hemp and marijuana are both essentially the same plant, that means it’s likely their products are going to smell the same. In addition to smelling the same, they will probably even look the same.

Grows of industrial hemp for products looks almost identical to marijuana. Industrial hemp grown for textiles, on the other hand, has extremely long stalks that are very strong.

It is extremely common for topical products like creams, lotions, and balms to have an earthy smell to it which may smell like weed. What you are smelling is the residual odor from the cannabis plants.

Extracting CBD From Hemp

In order to make products, you have to pull out the CBD from hemp. This process is known as extraction (read more about CBD extraction here).

There are many different types of extraction of the cannabis plant, but the end result always results in a hemp extract that is rich of phytocannabinoids.

You are left with either full spectrum (all cannabinoids), broad spectrum (all cannabinoids except THC), or an isolate (only one specific cannabinoid) after extracting from cannabis plants.

This hemp oil looks very dark, and smells like marijuana extract. Remember, they are basically the same plant. The smell you are noticing is a bunch of different ‘terpenes‘.

Terpenes are scents that plants and insects disperse in an effort to protect themselves from predators or herbivores. The hemp flower, among other parts of cannabis plants, have terpenes in them, too. This is partly why you might notice your CBD smell like weed.

This oil is a base oil. You then mix this with a carrier oil, like coconut oil, and you then have a real, hemp based product. There is much more to the process than this, but this is the basic method.

This raw hemp oil is then refined a little bit more and turned into what’s called a ‘distillate’.

A distillate is simply a processed and refined version of the distillate oil. Many things are removed, and you’re left with a cannabinoid-rich hemp extract. This extract goes into the products you enjoy.

Depending on the extraction type, and skill level/machines used, the smell of the hemp extract can be controlled. One of many different ways to tell if a topical CBD product is high-quality, is the smell test.

Open a container of CBD balm. If the smell is overwhelmingly like marijuana, it’s likely a lesser quality product. Most premium topical CBD products have a mild hemp/weed smell to it, but this smell is normally masked with the use of scents like lavender, for example.

Premium CBD products, typically, do not have an overwhelming hemp/weed smell to them.

Read more in the blog post…

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