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Is CBD legal?The 2018 Farm Bill removed hemp from the legal definition of marijuana in the Controlled Substances Act. This made some hemp-derived CBD products with less than 0.3 percent THC federally legal. However, CBD products containing more than 0.3 percent THC still fall under the legal definition of marijuana, making them federally illegal but legal under some state laws. Be sure to check state laws, especially when traveling. Also, keep in mind that the FDA has not approved nonprescription CBD products, and some products may be inaccurately labeled.

Cannabidiol (CBD) comes in a wide variety of forms, ranging from gummies and capsules to topical creams and balms. However, CBD oils and tinctures are among the most versatile kinds.

A quick look at 6 of the best CBD tinctures

CBD is one of over 100 chemical compounds called cannabinoids found in the Cannabis sativa plant. CBD has become a popular alternative treatment for numerous medical conditions, including epilepsy, chronic pain, and anxiety.

This article explains what a CBD tincture is and how it differs from a CBD oil. We also cover six CBD tinctures available on the market today and discuss how consumers can choose a high-quality CBD tincture.

People often use the terms CBD oil and CBD tincture interchangeably. However, although these products have similar appearances and uses, they are different.

Despite these differences, most companies within the CBD industry use the terms CBD oil and CBD tincture interchangeably.

Packaging

Both CBD oil and tincture are thick liquids that contain CBD, a naturally occurring compound derived from the C. sativa plant.

Both products come in tinted glass bottles with droppers, allowing people to use CBD sublingually by dropping it under their tongues.

Ingredients

Traditionally, the main difference between CBD oil and tincture has been their composition. CBD oil contains a CBD suspended in a carrier oil, such as olive, coconut, or hempseed oil.

CBD tinctures, on the other hand, are typically glycerin- or alcohol-based solutions. To make them, manufacturers soak cannabis in high-proof alcohol, such as ethanol. Then, they either dilute or suspend the resulting CBD extract in a carrier oil.

When choosing a CBD tincture, we recommend that people look for products that:

  • contain no more than 0.3% THC, per the Agriculture Improvement Act
  • have proof of third-party testing by an ISO/IEC 17025-accredited laboratory
  • pass tests for pesticides, heavy metals, mold, and microbes
  • pass product potency evaluations and safety testing

Reputable manufacturers provide certificates of analysis (COAs) for all of their products. A COA is a document that shows that an unbiased laboratory has tested a CBD product. People can find COAs on product websites or by scanning a QR code on the product.

A COA contains the following information:

  • content of CBD, THC, and other cannabinoids
  • content of terpenes
  • results of safety tests for pesticides, heavy metals, microbes, and chemicals

In addition to laboratory test results, people should consider:

  • CBD potency
  • price
  • retailer’s and manufacturer’s reputation
  • customer reviews

All of the products discussed in this article have undergone third-party testing and come highly recommended by previous customers.

Read our complete buyer’s guide to CBD here.

Here are six of the best CBD tinctures available on the market.

Please note that the writer of this article has not tried these products. All information presented is purely research-based and correct at the time of publication.

Medical News Today follows a strict product selection and vetting process. Learn more here.

Best for a CBD tincture that contains humulene: Lazarus Naturals High Potency CBD Tincture

Price$24.00
CBD content750 milligrams (mg)
Flavorsclassic, chocolate mint, and strawberry
Why it’s a top pickcontains humulene
COAavailable online

This high-potency CBD tincture contains 50 mg of CBD per milliliter (ml). The CBD comes from a full-spectrum hemp extract suspended in organic hemp seed and coconut oils.

The dropper has markings at every 0.25 ml for precise dosing. Lazarus Naturals recommends that people start with 25–50 mg and slowly increase their dosage as needed.

The COA on the company’s website shows that this tincture contains a terpene called humulene. According to a 2020 review, humulene has neuroprotective and anti-inflammatory properties.

In addition to CBD, this tincture contains up to 0.187% THC and other cannabinoids, such as cannabigerol, cannabichromene, and cannabinol.

Learn more about Lazarus CBD here.

Best CBD tincture for relieving and reducing discomfort: CBDistillery Full-Spectrum CBD Tincture

Price$70.00
CBD content1,000 mg
Flavorunflavored
Why it’s a top pickeasily accessible COA
COAavailable online

This product contains 1,000 mg of full-spectrum CBD, and each serving is equivalent to 33 mg.

Other ingredients in this tincture include coconut oil, hemp seed oil, and flavonoids. It also has traces of THC.

Anecdotal reports suggest that this product promotes relaxation and reduces discomfort. There is no medical evidence to support these reports.

The company says it uses a carbon dioxide-based method to extract the CBD oil from industrial hemp that is not genetically modified.

CBDistillery recommends starting by putting 5–10 mg of the tincture under the tongue. Hold the liquid there for 10–20 seconds before swallowing. People can adjust their dosages as needed.

Learn more about CBDistillery here.

Use code “MNT20” for 20% off.

Best CBD tincture for relieving pain: Leaf Remedys 60 ml Broad-Spectrum CBD Tincture

Price$59.99
CBD content1,000 mg
Flavornatural
Why it’s a top pickgluten-free
COAavailable online

Leaf Remedys’ product contains broad-spectrum CBD, and it is available in three strengths: 1,000, 2,000, and 4,000 mg.

Other ingredients include medium-chain triglyceride (MCT) oil and hemp extract. It also has natural flavors but no food fillers or additives. This product is suitable for people with gluten-free diets.

According to the company’s website, products undergo a sub-zero extraction method that ensures the removal of unwanted substances.

Some reviewers say that this tincture helped them manage migraine episodes and knee pain.

Best isolate CBD tincture: Extract Labs Daily Support Tincture

Price$95.00
CBD content2,000 mg
Flavorunflavored
Why it’s a top pickhigh concentration
COAavailable online

This tincture is made with CBD isolate. It contains no THC and no other cannabinoids beyond CBD.

The brand notes that the CBD isolate in this product is flavorless, but the coconut oil gives the product a slight coconut flavor.

Each ml of Extract Labs Daily Support Tincture contains 66 mg of CBD, making it the highest-concentrated product on this list.

Best CBD tincture for secure packaging: Absolute Nature Full Spectrum CBD Tincture

Price$99.99
CBD content1,000 mg
Flavorunflavored
Why it’s a top pickcGMP certified
COAavailable online

This CBD tincture is made with just two ingredients: full-spectrum CBD and MCT oil.

The product has “current good manufacturing practice” (cGMP) certification from the FDA.

There is 33 mg of CBD in each ml. The dropper comes with clearly marked measurements to help people correctly portion each dose.

Absolute Nature says that each of its products comes with child-proof packaging. This can be important for protecting children and pets.

Best flavored CBD tincture: cbdMD Full Spectrum CBD Oil Tincture

Price$59.99
CBD content750 mg
Flavorunflavored or chocolate mint
Why it’s a top pickhemp that is not genetically modified
COAavailable online

This CBD tincture comes in natural and chocolate mint flavors. Many reviewers, but not all, say that they enjoy the taste. Customers report beneficial effects, such as improved sleep quality and a sense of calm.

The brand produces its products in the United States with hemp that is not genetically modified. This tincture contains full-spectrum hemp extract and MCT oil. The chocolate mint flavor also contains natural chocolate flavor and peppermint oil.

The product is available in strengths of 1,500 mg and 3,000 mg. Each comes in a 30-ml bottle with a dropper to help people measure doses.

The following table compares the CBD tinctures in this article.

PriceCBD contentCBD type
Lazarus Naturals High Potency$24.00750 mgfull spectrum
CBDistillery Full Spectrum$70.001,000 mgfull spectrum
Leaf Remedys 60 ml Broad Spectrum$59.991,000 mgbroad spectrum
Extract Labs Daily Support$95.002,000 mgisolate
Absolute Nature Full Spectrum$99.991,000 mgfull spectrum
cbdMD Full Spectrum$59.99750 mgfull spectrum

CBD tincture is an easy-to-use and versatile product. People can ingest CBD tincture orally by placing one full dropper of oil under the tongue and holding the oil for about 30–90 seconds before swallowing.

People can also mix a dropper of CBD tincture into a warm or cold beverage. However, if the CBD tincture is oil-based, it will likely not mix well in liquid.

The dosage varies depending on a person’s body weight and the potency of the CBD tincture. People who are new to CBD should start with the lowest possible dosage. Once they know how their body reacts to CBD, they can gradually increase the dosage.

It is important that people follow the directions and dosage information printed on the outside of the bottle.

CBD is one of the hundreds of cannabinoids, such as tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), unique to the cannabis plant.

CBD tinctures contain either broad-spectrum CBD, full-spectrum CBD, or CBD isolate. Full-spectrum CBD contains other cannabinoids, including very low THC levels and smaller organic molecules called terpenes.

Several studies suggest that combining CBD, THC, and terpenes is more effective than using CBD or THC alone.

In one 2018 study, researchers compared the antitumor effects of pure THC with a cannabis-derived drug containing CBD, THC, and other cannabinoids and terpenes. The combined effects of the cannabinoids and terpenes produced superior antitumor effects on breast cancer cell cultures and animal models.

In a 2018 meta-analysis of observational clinical studies, researchers found that CBD-rich extracts led to better therapeutic effects and fewer reports of mild and severe side effects than extracts that contained only CBD.

It is also of note that both these studies looked at treatment-resistant epilepsy, which is further proof of CBD’s effectiveness in treating said condition.

According to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, cannabinoid-based drugs may help treat the following conditions:

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), people generally tolerate CBD well. However, scientists need to conduct more research to fully understand CBD’s role in treating conditions such as epilepsy and MS.

It is also worth noting that CBD may interact with certain medications. People who currently take prescription medications must talk with their doctor before using any CBD products.

According to the FDA, CBD can lead to the following side effects:

More severe side effects of CBD include:

  • liver damage
  • interactions with alcohol and other drugs that slow brain activity
  • fertility problems in males

CBD tinctures may suit individuals who cannot take pills or capsules, as they use the dropper to place drops under their tongue.

They are convenient and may produce immediate results. According to the Arthritis Foundation, a person is more likely to experience the effects of sublingual medications within 15–45 minutes.

CBD tinctures contain a high alcohol content that can make them bitter in taste. As a result, some companies add sweeteners, vitamins, or herbal extracts to help mask this effect.

There is a wide selection of high-quality, third-party-tested CBD tinctures available on the market. Many retailers listed in this article sell other CBD products, such as oils, gummies, capsules, and topicals.

CBD tinctures and oils are easy to use and versatile. People can use oils and tinctures alone or mixed in a beverage. Gummies and capsules are also for oral use. People can chew CBD gummies while they swallow capsules like a pill.

People may have less flexibility with the dosing when using CBD gummies and capsules. As a result, people may want to look for products containing lower CBD levels per serving.

Topical CBD products include CBD-infused creams, balms, and salves designed for external use only. Companies often market these products as spot treatments for muscle or joint pain. People can also mix CBD oil with a carrier oil and apply the mixture to their skin.

It is important to carefully read the manufacturer’s label before using any CBD product. People should use these products only as directed by the manufacturer.

The below are some frequently asked questions about CBD tinctures.

Are CBD products safe for everyone?

CBD products are generally safe, but a person should always seek medical advice before taking them, as they may interact with prescribed or over-the-counter medications.

Some companies also manufacture products for pets, but it is best to ask a veterinarian for advice before giving CBD products to an animal.

How do you use CBD tinctures?

A person should always follow the manufacturer’s instructions.

However, many brands recommend adding the servings to food or drinks or placing them under the tongue and waiting for a few seconds before swallowing.

Do CBD tinctures cause side effects?

An older 2014 article notes that CBD is well-tolerated if a person uses up to a 600 mg dose.

However, in a 2017 article, researchers reviewed the effects of CBD in people with epilepsy and psychotic disorders. They found that the most common side effects that the participants experienced were tiredness, diarrhea, and changes in appetite and weight.

Who should not take CBD?

According to the FDA, individuals should not take any CBD products during pregnancy or while breastfeeding. Animal tests show detrimental effects to male fetuses, while some chemicals and compounds may transfer to a baby through breast milk. Scientists should carry out further research to establish if the same effects are evident in humans.

What is the most trusted CBD brand?

A person should only purchase CBD products from companies that have third-party lab testing and easily accessible certificates of analysis (COA) for all products.

Third-party lab testing and COAs are two of the best ways to choose a reputable or trustworthy brand. People may also choose to look at third-party review sites such as the Better Business Bureau and Trustpilot to read customer reviews before purchasing a product.

How do I choose a CBD tincture?

Alongside third-party lab testing and COAs, a person may also consider other factors when choosing a CBD tincture.

A person should always check the CBD potency and THC content when purchasing a product. People who prefer using CBD without THC may wish to purchase CBD isolate products.

Additionally, people may wish to consider their budget and whether the company offers a subscription that provides a discount.

Is CBD tincture as effective as CBD oil?

Companies formulate CBD tincture for ingestion, whereas some forms of CBD oil are suitable for topical use as well as ingestion.

A person who wishes to use CBD topically may prefer to purchase products that are specifically for use on the skin.

CBD tinctures contain alcohol- or carbon dioxide-extracted CBD suspended in a carrier oil, such as olive, coconut, or hemp seed oil.

It is important to note that when buying CBD tincture or any other CBD product, people should only purchase from reputable retailers and manufacturers. Reputable sources provide transparent COAs for all of their products.

CBD is generally safe to use, but it can lead to potentially serious side effects if combined with alcohol and certain medications.

People who currently take prescription medications should consult their doctor before they start using CBD in any form.

For more information and resources on CBD and CBD products, please visit our dedicated hub.