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CannabisWhat Are Cannabis Extracts?

What Are Cannabis Extracts?

The subject of cannabis extracts is an interesting one, especially if you are a canna connoisseur. Deciding which cannabis product is right for you can be confusing. Cannabis extracts are a popular choice for many. This article will explain what they are, how they’re made, and how to use them safely.

Keep reading to learn more!

Types of Cannabis Extracts

From crude oil to THCa crystalline, there are various types of cannabis extracts with different potencies and effects. Each type offers a unique experience and can be used for different purposes such as recreational or medicinal use.

Crude Oil

Crude oil is the initial form of cannabis concentrate extracted directly from the plant using various methods. This raw form contains cannabinoids like THC and CBD, along with terpenes and other plant compounds.

Unlike more refined products, crude oil has not undergone any processes to remove waxes or impurities, making it less pure but rich in the plant’s original properties.

Producers often use solvents such as hydrocarbon or ethanol to extract this thick, potent oil. The extraction process aims to pull out as much of the beneficial compounds from the cannabis plant as possible.

After extraction, crude oil can serve as a base for creating other types of marijuana concentrates like distillates and isolates, each offering different levels of purity and potency for consumers seeking various effects.

Live Resin

After discussing the process and characteristics of crude oil, it’s important to delve into another popular cannabis extract known as live resin. Unlike crude oil, which is made from dried and cured cannabis, live resin is produced using freshly harvested plants.

This distinction allows for a higher concentration of terpenes, resulting in a more potent aroma and flavor profile. The extraction process involves freezing the plant material immediately after harvest to preserve its natural compounds before undergoing solvent-based extraction methods such as butane or propane extraction.

As a result, live resin offers users an experience that captures the full essence of the living plant at its peak.

The use of fresh cannabis material in live resin production leads to a product with enhanced aromatic qualities and pronounced effects due to its preservation of volatile terpenes otherwise lost during traditional drying and curing processes.


Shatter is a potent cannabis extract known for its high THC content. It has a glass-like appearance and is typically amber or golden in color. To produce shatter, cannabis plant material is processed using hydrocarbon solvents such as butane or propane.

The extraction process removes the cannabinoids and terpenes from the plant material, resulting in a concentrated form of THC that can reach up to 80-90% purity. Shatter is often consumed by vaporization or dabbing, providing a rapid onset of intense effects due to its high potency.

Producing shatter involves carefully controlled processes to ensure safety and quality while maximizing cannabinoid extraction. The result is a highly potent and versatile cannabis concentrate sought after by users looking for strong and immediate effects.


Badder is a type of cannabis extract that has a soft, creamy consistency. It is created through the process of extracting cannabinoids and terpenes using solvents like butane or ethanol.

The resulting concentrate has a texture resembling cake batter, hence the name “badder.” This form of cannabis extract is highly potent and can contain high levels of THC or CBD, making it popular among consumers seeking intense effects.

The production process involves purging the solvent from the concentrate to ensure it’s safe for consumption. Once ready, badder can be dabbed using a dab rig or vaporized for immediate effects.

new cannabis extracts


Sugar is a cannabis extract known for its granular appearance and high terpene content. This concentrate gets its name from its crystalline structure, resembling sugar crystals. During the extraction process, terpenes are preserved, leading to a more flavorful and aromatic product.

Sugar can be consumed in various ways, including dabbing or adding it to joints or bowls for an enhanced experience.

Understanding the different types of cannabis extracts provides valuable insight into their unique characteristics and effects on consumers. Moving on to our discussion of “Sauce,” we will explore another fascinating type of cannabis extract that offers distinct properties and benefits.


Sauce is a type of cannabis extract that has a sticky, liquid consistency. It is highly potent and rich in terpenes, which are responsible for the aroma and flavor of cannabis. The production process involves carefully preserving the terpenes to maintain the strain’s distinctive taste and smell.

To create sauce, trichomes are typically extracted using ethanol solvent or another extraction method before being separated from plant material.

The resulting concentrate is then mixed with high-quality terpene-rich oil to achieve its signature texture and intense flavor profile. Cannabis enthusiasts appreciate sauce for its robust taste, powerful effects, and versatility in consumption methods such as dabbing or vaporizing.

THCa Crystalline

Moving on from discussing Sauce, let’s delve into THCa Crystalline. This cannabis extract is a pure crystalline powder containing almost 100% tetrahydrocannabinolic acid (THCa) – the precursor to THC.

Known for its potency and versatility, THCa Crystalline can be ingested orally, vaporized or used topically. The extraction process involves isolating the THCa molecules by removing all other impurities, resulting in a product that is often considered one of the purest forms of THC available.

THCa Crystalline offers consumers an option for high-potency THC products without any plant matter or residual solvents. It provides a clean and precise way to experience the benefits of THC, making it popular among medical marijuana patients seeking relief from various conditions like chronic pain, insomnia, or nausea.

THC Distillate

Moving on from THCa Crystalline, another potent cannabis extract is THC Distillate. This concentrate undergoes a refinement process that removes impurities and isolates the THC compound, resulting in an extremely high potency product.

The distillation process involves heating the cannabis extract to vaporize cannabinoids and then condensing the vapor back into liquid form to create a pure THC concentrate. Due to its purity and potency, THC distillate is commonly used in vape cartridges, edibles, tinctures, and topicals.

Full Spectrum CBD

Full Spectrum CBD contains a wide range of cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant, including THC (in trace amounts), terpenes, and other beneficial compounds. It offers the potential for an “entourage effect,” where these various components work together synergistically to enhance the therapeutic effects.

This type of CBD is extracted from the whole hemp plant, ensuring that it retains all naturally occurring compounds. Full Spectrum CBD may provide benefits such as pain relief, reduced inflammation, and improved mood without causing psychoactive effects.

The extraction process involves using solvents or CO2 to pull out the full spectrum of cannabinoids from the plant material. Once extracted, it undergoes further refinement to remove impurities while retaining its full cannabinoid profile.

CBD Distillate

CBD distillate is a highly concentrated form of CBD oil that undergoes a refining process to remove impurities and produce a potent final product. The distillation process involves heating the CBD oil to separate and isolate specific cannabinoids, resulting in a pure and potent form of CBD.

This refinement process ensures that the CBD distillate contains high levels of cannabidiol while minimizing other compounds such as THC, terpenes, and flavonoids. As a result, CBD distillate is favored for its versatility in various products like edibles, topicals, tinctures, and vape cartridges due to its high potency and purity.

When crafting CBD products with the distillate, manufacturers have precise control over dosage accuracy, making it easier to achieve consistent results across different batches. Additionally, consumers benefit from knowing they are getting pure CBD without the psychoactive effects associated with THC.

CBD Isolate

CBD Isolate is the purest form of cannabidiol available, containing 99% CBD and no other cannabinoids or plant compounds. It is produced by isolating CBD from the rest of the extract and then refining it to remove all traces of THC, terpenes, and other plant matter.

This results in a crystalline powder that can be used in various ways, including mixing into oils or edibles, or simply consumed on its own.

It’s important to note that while this pure form of CBD has its benefits for those who want to avoid THC completely, it may not provide the entourage effect seen with full-spectrum products.

How Cannabis Extracts are Made

Cannabis extracts are made through various methods including drying and curing the cannabis, as well as solventless and solvent-based extraction. These processes result in a variety of potent cannabis products such as oils, distillates, and concentrates.

Drying and Curing Cannabis

Drying and curing cannabis involves carefully hanging the harvested plant upside down in a dark, well-ventilated area to remove excess moisture. This process helps to retain the terpenes and cannabinoids within the plant.

After drying, the buds are placed in an airtight container to continue curing for several weeks. Proper drying and curing techniques are crucial for preserving the flavor, aroma, and potency of the cannabis flower.

Curing allows chlorophyll to break down while maintaining optimal levels of humidity. The end result is smoother smoke with enhanced taste and increased potency. These critical steps ensure that cannabis extracts derived from properly dried and cured flowers contain high-quality compounds sought after by enthusiasts seeking premium THC or CBD concentrates.

Solventless extraction

After drying and curing, the next step in cannabis extraction is solventless extraction. This method involves using mechanical or physical means to separate the trichomes from the plant material without the use of any solvents.

Solventless extraction techniques include methods such as hand-rolling, pressing, sifting, or using ice water to create bubble hash. These processes preserve the terpenes and cannabinoids present in the trichomes, resulting in a potent and flavorful cannabis extract that appeals to many enthusiasts seeking a more natural form of concentrate.

The benefits of solventless extraction include its purity, as it does not involve any potentially harmful solvents. Additionally, this method allows for greater control over the final product’s flavor profile and potency by maintaining the integrity of the plant’s natural compounds.

cannabis extracts for use

Solvent-based extraction

Solvent-based extraction involves using chemicals like butane, propane, or ethanol to strip the cannabinoids and terpenes from the cannabis plant material. The process begins with soaking the plant matter in the chosen solvent, allowing it to absorb the desired compounds.

Then, through filtration and evaporation, the solvent is removed, leaving behind a concentrated extract rich in cannabinoids and terpenes. This method allows for high levels of cannabinoid extraction and is commonly used for producing products like shatter, wax, and oils.

The solvents used in this process can be hazardous if not handled properly due to their flammability and potential toxicity. Therefore, it’s crucial to follow strict safety guidelines when performing solvent-based extractions to ensure a safe final product free from residual solvents that could pose health risks.

Effects of Cannabis Extracts on the Brain and Body

Cannabis extracts can have short-term effects on cognition, mood, and motor coordination, varying based on the specific extract used. The long-term effects of cannabis extracts are still being studied to understand their potential impact on brain function and overall health.

Short-term effects

Cannabis extracts can lead to immediate effects, such as dizziness and impaired coordination. Users may also experience a temporary increase in heart rate and blood pressure after consuming cannabis extracts.

Additionally, short-term memory loss and changes in perception are common short-term effects that users might encounter shortly after using cannabis extracts.

The consumption of cannabis extracts can also result in dry mouth, red eyes, and increased appetite due to the psychoactive properties of THC. Some users might also feel anxious or paranoid immediately following the use of cannabis extracts.

Long-term effects

Long-term use of cannabis extracts may lead to cognitive impairment, including memory loss, learning difficulties, and decreased attention span. Prolonged heavy use can also impact mental health, potentially leading to anxiety disorders or depression.

Additionally, regular consumption of high-potency extracts may result in tolerance or dependence over time. It’s essential for individuals using cannabis extracts on a long-term basis to be mindful of these potential effects and seek medical advice if they experience any adverse symptoms.

Moving forward, it’s crucial to understand the potential risks associated with prolonged use of cannabis extracts and how they can affect your overall well-being.

Potential risks and precautions

While considering the potential risks and precautions of using cannabis extracts, it’s important to acknowledge that these concentrated forms of cannabis can lead to a higher risk of dependence and tolerance compared to traditional marijuana use.

Additionally, there is a possibility of adverse reactions in individuals with pre-existing mental health conditions such as anxiety or psychosis, which may be exacerbated by the potent effects of extracts.

When consuming cannabis extracts, it’s crucial to start with low doses and monitor personal reactions carefully due to their high potency. Furthermore, individuals should be cautious about mixing cannabis extracts with other substances such as alcohol or prescription medications due to the potential for interactions and increased side effects.

To minimize potential risks when using cannabis extracts, consumers should prioritize acquiring products from reputable sources that undergo rigorous testing for purity and potency.

It is essential for users to educate themselves about safe consumption practices and store their products securely out of reach of children or pets. Understanding individual tolerance levels plays an integral role in preventing overconsumption and related adverse effects.

Comparison to traditional marijuana use

When comparing cannabis extracts to traditional marijuana use, it’s important to note that extracts are much more potent due to the higher concentration of cannabinoids. Unlike smoking dried marijuana flower, which requires combustion and can release harmful toxins, cannabis extracts offer a more precise and controlled method of consumption.

With extracts, users can benefit from a faster onset of effects and a wider range of options for consumption, such as vaporization or sublingual application. Additionally, the potential health risks associated with inhaling combustion by-products may be minimized when using certain extraction methods that do not involve heat or smoke.

Furthermore, compared to traditional marijuana use where THC and other cannabinoids are consumed together in varying proportions based on the strain, cannabis extracts allow for targeted cannabinoid ratios tailored to individual needs.

How to Consume and Store Cannabis Extracts

To consume and store cannabis extracts, you can use various methods such as vaporization, dabbing, or adding them to edibles. Proper storage in a cool, dark place away from direct sunlight and heat is crucial to maintain their potency and flavor.

Different methods of consumption

Cannabis extracts can be consumed in various ways, including inhalation through vaporization or smoking, ingestion via edibles and capsules, and absorption through tinctures or topicals.

Inhalation allows for rapid onset of effects as the cannabinoids enter the bloodstream through the lungs. Edibles offer a discreet and long-lasting experience, but it takes time for them to take effect.

Tinctures provide precise dosing and convenient administration by placing drops under the tongue. Additionally, topicals are applied directly to the skin for localized relief from pain or inflammation.

Understanding these diverse methods of consumption empowers individuals to choose the most suitable way to benefit from cannabis extracts based on their preferences and needs, leading to a personalized experience that maximizes its potential advantages.

Proper storage techniques

After choosing your preferred method of consumption for cannabis extracts, it is crucial to store them properly to maintain their potency and quality. Store your cannabis extracts in an airtight container in a cool, dark place, away from direct sunlight, heat, and moisture.

This will help preserve the cannabinoids and terpenes present in the extract. Ensure that the containers are kept out of reach of children or pets and consistently labeled with essential information like cannabinoid content and date of purchase.

Additionally, storing cannabis extracts away from strong odors will prevent them from taking on unwanted flavors or scents.

Understanding potency and dosing

Understanding the potency and dosing of cannabis extracts is essential for a safe and enjoyable experience. Potency refers to the concentration of cannabinoids, such as THC or CBD, in the extract.

It’s important to start with a low dose and gradually increase to find the optimal amount for individual tolerance. Reading product labels and understanding the cannabinoid content per serving can help users determine appropriate dosing.

Factors like individual metabolism, body weight, and prior cannabis use can also influence how an individual responds to cannabis extracts. Accurately measuring doses using calibrated tools like droppers or syringes can help maintain consistency.

Properly understanding potency and dosing ensures users have a predictable experience when consuming cannabis extracts while reducing the risk of adverse effects due to overconsumption or underestimating strength.


Understanding the various types of cannabis extracts allows for informed consumption. Knowing how these extracts are made provides insight into their potency and quality. Exploring their effects and proper usage can help maximize benefits while minimizing risks.

Cannabis extracts offer diverse options for those seeking alternative ways to experience the plant’s properties.

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