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Various types and forms of CBD are available, ranging from full-spectrum to CBD isolate, and gummies to oils. Here, we discuss our favorites and how to choose the best CBD.

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% THC federally legal. However, CBD products containing more than 0.3% 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.

CBD is a chemical compound found in the cannabis plant. Unlike delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), CBD does not produce a high feeling after use.

Learn more about the differences between CBD and THC here.

Companies that manufacture CBD products use different methods to extract the compound from the plant. The varying diffusions result in a range of CBD types.

There are three types of CBD, containing different compounds and concentrations:

  • Full-spectrum: Includes all parts of the cannabis plant. Full-spectrum products contain less than <0.3% THC.
  • Broad-spectrum: This contains most of the cannabis plant compounds. Unlike full-spectrum, broad-spectrum products contain trace amounts of THC.
  • Isolates: Only contain CBD, with no other cannabinoids or THC. Products that contain isolate CBD may not produce any notable effects.

According to research, both full-spectrum and broad-spectrum CBD can produce clinical responses when people use them. The results may not be due strictly to CBD. Instead, a person may experience what is known as the entourage effect; this occurs when several compounds combine to cause clinical effects. As such, CBD products may only work because of a combination of compounds from different ingredients.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warns that a person should consider the potential risks before using CBD for any reason. For example, people who are pregnant or breastfeeding should avoid THC.

Federal law allows the use of CBD containing less than 0.3% THC. However, not all states allow the sale of CBD. A person should check their local laws before obtaining CBD.

The FDA does not regulate any other claims of benefits. It states that several CBD products make misleading claims about the use of their products. People should use caution before ordering any type of CBD. The FDA can investigate health claims and safety concerns.

A person should look for independently tested products. Some companies provide a Certificate of Analysis (COA), which shows what is in the supplements.

Read our guide to buying CBD here.

The table below summarises common terms when discussing CBD:

CBDA compound within the C. sativa plant that does not create the high sensation individuals commonly associate with cannabis use.
THCA compound in the C. sativa plant. It is the psychoactive compound that creates the high sensation from cannabis use.
Full-spectrumA full-spectrum product will contain all of the natural compounds in the cannabis plant, including THC. However, THC levels must be no more than 0.3% to comply with Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regulation on full-spectrum CBD products.
Broad-spectrumBroad-spectrum products contain natural compounds of the cannabis plant. However, while manufacturers remove all or most of the THC in broad-spectrum CBD, it may still be present in trace amounts.
CBD isolateThis is the purest form of CBD and should contain 0% THC.
CannabinoidsThe compounds within the cannabis plant, of which there are over 120. CBD is the second richest compound in the plant after THC.
TerpenesAnother compound of the C. sativa plant, terpenes typically give plants their specific aromas. Some terpenes, such as limonene, may have specific health benefits.
Certificate of analysis (COA)Reputable manufacturers of CBD products should ensure a COA is available for inspection. A COA provides information on the third-party testing that independent labs conduct on a particular product. Sometimes, products have a scannable smartphone code directing people to the COA online.

Read more about terminology and other important CBD information here.

Medical News Today chooses products that meet the following criteria:

  • Ingredients: MNT chooses products containing safe and high quality clearly labeled ingredients. They should also confirm they are free from pesticides, heavy metals, and mold.
  • Dosage: MNT chooses products that must clearly state the CBD dosage.
  • Serving size: MNT selects products in which manufacturers recommend a dosage.
  • Third-party labs: MNT chooses products that must undergo third-party testing for contaminants by an ISO 17025-compliant laboratory.
  • Available certificate of analysis: MNT chooses companies that demonstrate transparency and share a product’s certificate of analysis (COA) following receipt of its third-party lab results.

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

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CBD products come in three different forms. The main types of CBD products include:

CBD is also available in many other forms, including capsules and pills, vaping liquid, mist sprays, and more. Some companies also produce CBD products for pets.

Below are product options for different forms and types of CBD.

Please note that this article contains quotes from testers who may have received products for free.

CBD oil manufacturers often direct users to place it under the tongue and then swallow. The dose, potency, and price can vary depending on the brand. Dosing can start as low as 5 or 10 milligrams (mg).

A person should follow the manufacturer’s instructions closely.

Learn about the best CBD oils here.

Best range of CBD oil flavors and strengths: Soul CBD Drops

  • Price: $62–$153
  • Price per mg: $0.09–$0.12
  • CBD type: CBD isolate
  • Strength: 500 mg, 1,000 mg, or 1,500 mg per bottle
  • Available flavors: seven
  • COA: available online

These oils come in a range of flavors and strengths, making them a great choice for people who enjoy variety.

There are seven flavors to choose from, including raspberry lemonade, watermelon mint, pineapple mango, and peppermint.

This oil does not contain any THC, making it perfect for people who do not want to ingest this compound. Additionally, this product is vegan and gluten-free, and the company says it uses CBD from American organically-grown hemp farms.


  • large range of flavor choice
  • vegan and gluten-free
  • THC free


  • more expensive per mg in comparison to some competitors
  • as it does not have THC, it may not have an “entourage effect”
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Best organic CBD oil: NuLeaf Naturals Oils

  • Price: $19-$249
  • Price per mg: $0.04-$0.06
  • CBD type: full-spectrum
  • Strength: 300-6,000 mg per bottle
  • Available flavors: none
  • COA: available online

NuLeaf Naturals offers a CBD oil with 60 mg/mL dosage, available in several strengths ranging from 300 to 6,000 mg.

NuLeaf’s oils are full-spectrum, organic, and a potent blend of CBD due to the extraction method. NuLeaf has an ISO certificate, which looks at quality standards.

What our tester says

“I recently had a chronic pain issue in my left shoulder stemming from a nagging rotator cuff injury sustained while surfing. I was in pain every day and it affected my quality of life, relatively speaking. The pain altered my sleep for the worse. I could not swim or surf — my daily form of exercise – affecting my mood.

“Before my doctor referred me to a new type of physical therapy (proprioceptive-deep tendon reflex therapy), this CBD helped relieve pain and made me feel relaxed and content.

“CBD is not a miracle cure, but it helped relax my muscles and block pain signals. I take CBD after I surf and am feeling rejuvenated.”

– Nick Balboa, Market Writer.


  • six choices of strength
  • uses organic hemp
  • subscription option available, which would save a person 20%


  • the higher strengths can be very expensive
  • no flavor choices
  • a person must spend $74 to qualify for free shipping
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Best high-strength CBD oil: Spruce Lab Grade CBD Oil

  • Price: $89–$269
  • Price per mg: $0.11
  • CBD type: full-spectrum
  • Strength: 750 mg or 2,400 mg per bottle
  • Available flavors: none
  • COA: available online

Spruce’s highest dose full spectrum oil, the 2,400 mg Lab Grade CBD Oil, contains 80 mg of CBD per milliliter serving. The company warns it may cause a person to fail drug tests despite containing less than 0.3% THC levels.

Learn about high-strength CBD oil here.

The brand’s products are third-party tested and lab grade. Spruce also claims the oil is:

  • 100% natural
  • pesticide-free
  • vegan
  • gluten-free
  • made in the U.S.


  • high potency
  • product is suitable for vegans
  • a person can choose between two different carrier oil options


  • expensive price per mg in comparison to some other competitors
  • no flavored options are available
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Topicals are products that a person applies to the skin. Examples include CBD-infused creams, ointments, lotions, balms, and tinctures.

Potency varies between products. With most topical products, a person needs to rub the product into the desired area. A person should follow all manufacturer instructions when using CBD topicals.

Topicals often use carrier oils and other ingredients. People should make sure they are not allergic to any of the ingredients found in the topical lotions.

Learn more about CBD topicals here.

Best CBD salve: Joy Organics Organic CBD Salve

  • Price: $54.95–$79.95
  • Price per mg: $0.08–$0.11
  • CBD type: broad-spectrum
  • Strength: 500–1,000 mg per bottle
  • Available scents: lavender and eucalyptus
  • COA: available online

Joy Organics offers several CBD products, including an organic CBD salve for topical use. The company claims it can help with dried and cracked skin and revitalize muscles and joints.

Joy Organics states its salve is:

  • THC-free
  • carbon-neutral
  • cruelty-free
  • organic

The salve is lab-tested. The lab analysis is available on the website.

A person can purchase a single container or sign up for a subscription service. Joy Organics offers a 100% money-back guarantee.

Learn more about the Joy Organics brands and its products here.


  • Joy Organics offers a subscription service, saving a person 20% on each order
  • two strength choices
  • USDA-certified organic


  • added scent may not be suitable for those with sensitive skin
  • contains beeswax, making it unsuitable for vegans
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Best all-purpose CBD cream: Spruce Topical CBD Cream

  • Price: $39
  • Price per mg: $0.13
  • CBD type: full-spectrum
  • Strength: 300 mg per bottle
  • Available scents: none
  • COA: available online

Spruce offers a topical CBD cream that a person can apply to their skin. The cream comes in 300 mg strength in a 2-ounce (oz) container.

Spruce claims that the ingredients are all-natural, using only plant-derived scents. Customers report that this cream may help relieve joint pain.

This cream is third-party tested and lab grade. It contains less than 0.3% THC and no pesticides.


  • low potency makes this ideal for beginners
  • has a subscription option where a person can save 15% on each order
  • does not contain added fragrance, so may be more suitable for those with sensitive skin


  • has a lower potency than competitors
  • no choice of strength
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Gummies contain an edible form of CBD and are available in different shapes, flavors, potencies, and prices. Lower doses tend to start around 5 mg.

People interested in using gummies should start at lower doses and work their way up to larger doses.

Since the FDA does not regulate CBD gummies, a person should use caution when selecting and consuming edible products. Look for products with third-party tests and lab results.

Learn more about hemp and CBD gummies here.

Best organic hemp gummies: CBDfx Mixed Berry Gummies

  • Price: $54.99-$84.99
  • Price per mg: $0.03-$0.04
  • CBD type: broad-spectrum
  • Strength: 1,500-3,000 mg per bottle
  • Available flavors: mixed berry
  • COA: available online

This product contains organic broad-spectrum hemp and all-natural ingredients. The gummies are suitable for vegans and gluten-free.

These gummies come in a mixed berry flavor. A person can choose between two strengths: 1,500 mg or 3,000 mg per pot. In the 1,500 mg pot, there is 25 mg of CBD in each gummy. In the 3,000 mg pot, each gummy contains 50 mg of CBD.

A serving size is two gummies a day.

CBDfx uses third-party lab testing to confirm potency and safety.


  • well-priced per mg
  • suitable for vegans
  • two strength options


  • only one flavor choice
  • the company does not offer a subscription service like many competitors
  • beginners may require a lower dose
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Best full-spectrum gummies: R&R Medicinals CBD Gummies

  • Price: $55–$80
  • Price per mg: $0.04–$0.06
  • CBD type: full-spectrum
  • Strength: 900-1,800 mg per bottle
  • Available flavors: multi-flavored
  • COA: available online

These full-spectrum gummies contain either 30 mg or 60 mg of CBD per gummy. The gummies are multi-flavored with a sugar coating.

R&R Medicinals recommends a person take 1–2 gummies daily.

The hemp the company uses is grown in the USA and is USDA-certified organic. Each product undergoes third-party testing to ensure quality and safety.


  • product is USDA-certified organic
  • a subscription option is available, saving a person 20%
  • two choices of strength


  • no flavor options available
  • contains added sugar
  • unclear if the product is suitable for vegans
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Best CBD gummies for different uses: Medterra True Full Spectrum Original Gummies

  • Price: $34.99–$79.99
  • Price per mg: $0.06–$0.15
  • CBD type: full-spectrum
  • Strength: 500 mg per bottle
  • Available flavors: citrus
  • COA: available online

These full-spectrum gummies contain up to 40 mg of THC per container and 25 mg of CBD per gummy, making them a good option for people who are more used to using CBD.

The company claims these gummies can remain effective for 6–8 hours after consumption.

Learn more about Medterra here.

What our tester says

“I’ll start by saying that I’m a huge fan of this gummy for a few reasons:

The citrus (lemon, in particular) flavor is unique amongst a sea of orange-flavored and tropical-flavored gummies. I enjoyed the juicy flavor of this Citrus gummy. It’s not coated in sugar, which I tend to prefer. The gummy isn’t sticky or chewy and has no weird aftertaste or funky dry mouth.

I did feel psychoactive effects after trying this gummy – about 40–50 minutes in, I noticed feeling a little bit high. It was just the right amount of high to watch a movie and enjoy relaxing – I didn’t feel any paranoia or unpleasant feelings, just a little giggly and calm. I’d recommend this gummy to anyone open to trying a low amount of THC (you can even cut the gummy in half!)

I also came down from the high pretty easily, it wasn’t jarring at any point in the process, and I was able to enjoy the entire time.”

– Christy Snyder, Healthline Editor.


  • contains organic ingredients
  • made in America, non-GMO, and US Hemp Authority-verified


  • dosage may be too high for beginners
  • only has one flavor option
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The following table compares the products in this article on type, price, strength, and more.

TypePricePrice per mgCBD typeStrength
Souloil$62–$153$0.09–$0.12isolate500–1,500 mg
NuLeaf Naturalsoil$19–$249$0.04–$0.06full-spectrum300–6,000 mg
Spruce oiloil$89–$269$0.11full-spectrum2,400 mg
Joy Organicstopical$54.95–$79.95$0.08–$0.11broad-spectrum500–1,000 mg
Spruce creamtopical$39$0.13full-spectrum300 mg
CBDfxgummies$54.99–$84.99$0.03–$0.04broad-spectrum1,500–3,000 mg
R&Rgummies$55–$80$0.04–$0.06full-spectrum900–1,800 mg
Medterragummies$34.99-$70.99$0.06–$0.15full-spectrum500 mg

Scientists do not know much about the long-term safety of using CBD products. The FDA warns that current data points to potential risks with taking CBD, which they are still investigating.

However, a review of studies published in 2020 found that participants in studies generally tolerated CBD with minimal side effects. They also noted that potency and doses varied significantly between studies, making it difficult to determine the effective dose for conditions.

Side effects noted in different studies included:

  • tiredness
  • changes in weight or appetite
  • diarrhea

CBD may provide several health benefits. According to a 2018 study, CBD may help with:

It is important to note that CBD is not a reliable treatment or cure for any of the above conditions. Research into CBD benefits and risks is ongoing.

Learn more about the potential benefits of CBD here.

The FDA has only approved the use of one CBD product for treatment purposes. In 2018, they approved the use of Epidiolex to treat seizures in three different conditions. A person needs a valid prescription from their doctor to obtain the medication.

Learn more about Epidiolex here.

The following are some common questions about CBD:

What are the 3 different types of CBD?

The three different types of CBD are:

  • Full-spectrum: Includes all parts of the cannabis plant. Full-spectrum products contain less than 0.3% of THC.
  • Broad-spectrum: Includes most of the cannabis plant, but not all. It only contains trace amounts of THC.
  • Isolate: This type only contains CBD, with no other added cannabinoids. It does not contain any THC.

Find out more about the different types of CBD here.

What type of CBD is most effective?

The type of CBD that is most effective will vary between individuals.

Full-spectrum and broad-spectrum CBD contain other cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavanoids that are present in the cannabis plant. These compounds all interact with the body’s endocannabinoid system and may make the product more effective.

However, several companies warn that ingesting products that contain the federally legal limit of 0.3% THC can still cause a positive drug test.

Those who have to take regular drug tests or those who prefer not to use THC products should consider CBD isolate.

What are the different kinds of CBD?

CBD is available in various forms, including:

  • oils
  • topicals
  • gummies
  • capsules and softgels
  • sprays
  • vape liquids

What is the difference between CBD, CBG, and CBN?

CBD, CBG, and CBN are three of the four major compounds found in the cannabis plant, the fourth being THC.

Cannabinol (CBN) and cannabigerol (CBG) are cannabinoids present in the cannabis plant. Full- and broad-spectrum CBD products may include these compounds as they may lead to more effective interaction with the body’s endocannabinoid system.

CBD is available in isolate, broad-spectrum, and full-spectrum varieties. Different product forms are available, including topicals, oils, gummies, and more.

The CBD industry is not regulated, so people must use caution when selecting the CBD product they want. People considering CBD products for treating health issues should speak to a doctor for advice and recommendations.