CBD Isolate and Full Spectrum

CBD Isolate and Full Spectrum, How Do They Differ?

Hemp products are everywhere these days. While they used to be rare, online-only products (i.e. oils) are now reaching the shelves of big brand-name stores like Wal-Mart and Target.

As new cannabinoids start to gain some traction, more cannabis oils are likely to follow. Research is sparse, to say the least, but one thing we do understand is the difference between CBD isolate and full spectrum products.

More importantly, there’s plenty of evidence laying out the pros and cons of both types of products. If cannabis oils are downright confusing to you, you’re not alone. However, you need to know what you’re buying if you plan to try any kind of cannabis extracts. Therefore we have analyzed CBD isolate and full spectrum for you.

Believe it or not, choosing the wrong one might not only ruin your experience, but could also cause health issues and land you in trouble. No need to worry though. One of these options will suit your particular needs and possible restrictions. 

CBD Vs. Full Spectrum

What is cannabis oil made of?


THC and CBD oil are the most popular products (with the former only legal in individual states). But recently, other cannabis oils like CBG and CBN are starting to find their way into the market.

Depending on the oil you buy, many – if not all – of the known cannabinoids will be present, albeit in trace amounts. Only a few of the CBD brands that are tested have a prominent cannabinoid and terpene profile. And we’re proud to say that Califia Gold is one of them.


Terpenes are oily compounds found throughout the plant kingdom. They also play a vital role in a plant’s health benefits, with cannabis oil being no exception. The terpene profile varies from one strain to another, giving each one its unique effects.

Like cannabinoids, terpenes evaporate at a specific temperature (these differ from one compound to another), allowing you to inhale them through either combustion or a vaporizer. You can also consume them in oil form or as infused edibles. The only difference is that inhaled terpenes go straight through your lungs and into the bloodstream, while ingestion takes more time to process.

Carrier Oil

Cannabis oil needs a medium to suspend cannabinoids and terpenes. Extracting these compounds require a fatty substance, so high-fat plant oils are the carrier of choice. There are a few other options as well, such as medium-chain triglycerides (MCT), grapeseed oil, olive oil, coconut oil and hempseed oil.

The carrier choice won’t make a difference in terms of cannabinoid or terpene absorption, but the chosen oil helps add some nutritional value.

Solvents, pesticides and other contaminants

You don’t need to worry because these aren’t common ingredients found in CBD oils. In fact, they shouldn’t be there at all. However, many cannabis oils contain trace amounts of toxic chemicals that defeat the purpose of using a health supplement.

How do these nasty things make it into your oil? There are several reasons for this. Companies who use butane as a solvent, for instance, will leave small traces behind in the final product. Pesticides, if used in the crop, can also find their way in trace amounts into the products.


CBD Isolate And Full spectrum CBD oil

Now that you know what goes into cannabis oils, the next step would be to determine which category of CBD oil works best for you.


This type of CBD oil is an all-encompassing option for you. Earlier, we mentioned cannabinoids and terpenes. During extraction, manufacturers do their best to ensure that these compounds aren’t filtered out.  


The main advantage of full-spectrum cannabis oil is the presence of all terpenes and cannabinoids from the hemp plant – including THC. Having all of these present in the oil, refers to a process known as the entourage effect. To sum it up briefly, the entourage effect is a synergistic relationship between cannabinoids and terpenes within marijuana and hemp. Thanks to this cooperation, we not only enjoy the enhanced benefits from the cannabinoid in question (i.e., CBD, CBG, CBN), but also those associated with other compounds.

Another advantage is that full-spectrum cannabis oil has a complete terpene and cannabinoid profile. Ultimately, full-spectrum CBD provides the most potency.


Ironically, full-spectrum oil’s main advantage can also become a disadvantage. Full-spectrum products contain some THC. Although 0.3% (at most) isn’t a lot, it can still cause issues in a few THC-sensitive individuals.

Another problem is that THC lingers in your system for quite some time-even in small amounts. If you work in an area such as professional sports or law enforcement, for instance, that minute trace of THC could show up on a drug test. So if you plan to use full-spectrum cannabis oil, you should speak to your employer in advance.

Full-spectrum oil is also less predictable, since terpene profile may vary and so does the product’s results. Consequently, oil you buy from one source might relax you, while another brand might feel more energizing.

CBD Isolate

Isolate is the complete opposite of full-spectrum oil. While full-spectrum contains as many other compounds as possible, isolate is 99% pure cannabinoid. Isolates are commonly used in many products, especially e-liquids, meant to be used in standard e-cigarettes.


Isolate is entirely THC-free. This effectively solves the problem for THC-sensitive people or for those who need to frequently get tested for drugs at work.

If you don’t like the ‘hemp-ey’ taste of the full-spectrum oil, then you’ll love isolate. It also comes infused with different flavors. The lack of additional compounds means that isolate is more consistent in its effects.


The biggest disadvantage for isolate is that it takes the entourage effect out of the equation. So despite being 99% pure, it’s not nearly as effective as the less concentrated full-spectrum variety.

Another concern is that with CBD isolate, it’s hard to pick a dose. Basically, using isolate to suit your needs is a considerable exercise in trial and error.

Califia Gold CBD products are a great way to introduce CBD into your lifestyle. As California’s industry leading cannabis advisors, Califia Gold provides you with good –quality, safe and effective CBD products.

Recommended Read: CBD Oil Help Relieve Chronic Pain And Aches

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