When looking to purchase CBD products, it’s important to fully understand the terms listed on the label.

In the midst of a rapidly expanding unregulated market, CBD consumers need a clear explanation of key terms that CBD products utilize to differentiate the types of product. There is often confusion by the terms “full spectrum,” “broad spectrum”, and “isolate". Here is a quick guide to understanding these terms by definition.

Please note, we offer insight as to what these terms should mean, but seeing this terminology does not confirm that the product in your hand was labeled correctly.

Full Spectrum CBD

Also referred to “whole plant”, full spectrum is a specific type of extract where the entire plant is used for extraction. Full-spectrum CBD contains more than just CBD. It also contains other cannabinoids, including traces of THC, and the plant’s other natural elements, terpenes, vitamins, proteins, flavonoids, and more. Different extraction methods determine a large portion of the final product, both visually and chemically. Full spectrum hemp extracts/products are sought after due to the entourage effect they can deliver.

What is the Entourage Effect?

The entourage effect is the concept of numerous compounds in the cannabis plant working together synergistically to provide a broader range of benefits as a whole. It’s basically the enhanced effectiveness of the other components extracted from the cannabis plant. Research has shown CBD interacts with different cannabinoid receptors than THC does, meaning both of these cannabinoids can simultaneously interact with different receptors in the endocannabinoid system. With assistance from the other cannabinoids and plant extracts, full-spectrum and broad-spectrum CBD can more effectively boost and stimulate the ECS.

What is Broad Spectrum CBD?

Broad spectrum CBD stands between full-spectrum and isolate CBD. It is defined as containing at least two cannabinoids and one terpene found naturally in the plant. Broad spectrum CBD does not contain THC. Broad-spectrum extracts can be produced one of two ways: (1) THC is removed from the full spectrum extract, or (2) CBD isolate is combined with other isolated cannabinoids, terpenes and flavonoids, in an attempt to mimic the full spectrum effect without THC.

What is CBD Isolate?

CBD isolate is pure CBD. There are no other cannabinoids, terpenes, flavonoids, or fatty acids present in an isolate. After the initial hemp extraction, the CBD is refined until only CBD molecules are left or isolated. Some may see CBD isolate as superior because of its “pure state", but there are benefits to CBD containing other cannabinoids and phytochemicals. The entourage effect cannot occur with CBD isolate. THC free products still provide many benefits for people who live in states where trace amounts of THC are illegal.

What Is Hemp Seed Oil (HSO)?

Hemp seed oil is a nutrient-rich oil that is extracted from the seeds of hemp plants, generally cold-pressed. Some products contain hemp oil and not CBD. Hemp seed oil contains zero cannabinoids and is free of THC and CBD. Hemp seed oil is non-psychoactive, non-psychotropic, and non-intoxicating.

Hemp seed oil is used as a food product, products containing strictly HSO are federally legal, and have been regulated by the FDA for decades.

Hemp seed oil has a broad variety of application possibilities. When applied as a topical, HSO is deeply hydrating, non-comedogenic (won’t clog pores), and is naturally absorbent. It is often used as a carrier oil in full-spectrum, broad-spectrum, and isolate hemp products.