It seems there’s nothing that CBD can’t cure. You might be taking CBD capsules for pain relief, eating CBD gummies to treat social anxiety, using CBD creams to fight acne, or rubbing oil into your skin to stave off pain—in any case, you can’t beat the product for its ability to boost health and wellness.
CBD is sold in online shops around the world. It’s everywhere and by the end of 2022, it’s expected to be a 22-billion-dollar industry, according to Rolling Stone. Based on the sheer success of this industry, it’s not surprising that so many companies have cropped up, claiming to sell the highest quality CBD you can find online.
But there are many companies that don’t live up to those claims. They cut corners and ignore industry standards in order to deliver cheaper prices and earn sales. Since there’s little industry regulation, in the CBD industry, too many companies get away with these shady practices. Then, the customer receives a product that contains more filler ingredients than CBD.
The story is all too common, but it doesn’t have to happen to you. Use these tried and true CBD-buying practices to help you get real, quality CBD every time you order.
- Go with a Trusted Brand
Choosing a trusted brand from which to purchase your CBD is one of the simplest ways to make sure you get real, quality CBD in an online shop. Finding a trusted brand is about more than going with the biggest names in the industry. Many of these brands will deliver quality products, but there are newer brands that will offer the same quality at better prices.
For example, well-known brands in CBD are usually established primarily because of their time on the market. But when you buy their products, you’re also buying the brand name, and it’s not cheap. On the flipside, newer brands might offer better prices for the same quality.
- Research Cultivation Practices
The most important part of buying quality CBD is learning where and how the hemp it came from was grown. Hemp must be grown organically without chemical pesticides, fertilizers, and other toxic chemicals.
This is a more expensive way to grow crops, however, so some hemp farmers cut corners and use toxins that should never be part of the hemp growth process. They can sell their crops more affordably to CBD manufacturers who sell it to companies that sell you CBD for cheap. This is a big red flag in the CBD industry.
Double check the hemp source for your CBD to ensure it’s grown according to USDA organic standards. If it’s part of an alliance of USDA-compliant industrial hemp program, it’s probably a great quality product.
- Check the Third-Party Lab Tests
CBD products should always be tested in a third-party laboratory. The lab results should be available either by request or through downloadable PDF on a company website. These lab tests are designed to ensure that the products inside the package match the label.
If you don’t see third-party lab test results on a CBD website, request them through customer service. If a company refuses to produce them for you, take that as a bad sign.
- Read the Ingredients
Always check the list of ingredients before purchasing any CBD products. Most CBD products contain a variety of other ingredients—for example, CBD oil is always CBD suspended in a natural oil like coconut oil.
Your goal is to purchase CBD with clean ingredients that aren’t going to affect the quality and potency of your CBD. You also want to make sure they don’t overshadow the CBD content so that you can’t gain the full effects. Ideally, great products will have minimal preservatives.
Again, make sure you’ve read the third-party lab results for each batch of CBD sold on a company website. There’s no FDA regulation to ensure that the product inside the packaging matches the package, but the lab results will confirm that for you.
- Understand the Extraction Process
The best CBD is always extracted using a CO2 process. Pressurized carbon dioxide pulls CBD from the hemp plant and compresses it into a cold liquid state. When performed correctly, it maintains all of its amazing nutrient-rich properties like terpenes, cannabinoids, fatty acids, trichomes, and more.
CO2 extraction is the only way to preserve the purity of CBD without contaminating the final product. It’s also safe and good for the environment. Depending on the way the CO2 compression was executed, you’re able to get one of three types of CBD.
CBD isolate is the purest form of CBD and is the result of removing everything from the hemp plant except the CBD. Broad-spectrum CBD has all the terpenes, cannabinoids, and other nutrients of the hemp plant with no traceable levels of THC and full-spectrum CBD contains all the good stuff plus up to 0.3 percent THC, the legal limit for CBD products.
- Check the Dosage
Understand how much CBD is in each dose of the product and which dose is right for you. This is important because it helps you to determine which products best fit your lifestyle. If you’re very sensitive to CBD, a small dose is all you need while others need more of a punch.
Typically, CBD oil is the most potent form of CBD. Typically, you’re getting 15, 30, or 60 milliliters of liquid, but sometime the 30ml bottle contains 250 mg and sometimes it contains 1,000 mg. Make sure that you’re getting the right dosage for you, and you’ll avoid a number of problems including unwanted side effects.
- Know CBD Pricing Standards
The pricing standards for CBD are somewhat tricky to the untrained eye. You might initially think that affordable pricing is the most important thing, but typically, that’s a big red flag. On the flipside, a very expensive product doesn’t always mean that the CBD you’re buying is any good.
The average price for a quality CBD product is anywhere from $0.11 to $0.20. Any less than that, and you’re likely dealing with a shady company that uses unethical measures and poor-quality products. If you pay any more than that, you’re probably being ripped off.