Can You Vape CBD Tinctures?
Updated February 2, 2021
Medically Reviewed by Dr. Sandra El-Hajj
Understanding the Difference Between CBD Vape Oil and CBD Tinctures
For the past couple of years, the world has witnessed the rise of an extraordinary trend: CBD. The onset of this new trend was a little tricky as it took people some time to understand that while CBD is extracted from the cannabis plant, it is not the same as the substance that makes you addicted and high!
With time, people understood the difference and began accepting CBD into their lives for its therapeutic properties. Since then, and with the culminating amount of research that revolves around this topic, CBD is being respected for its health benefits. As a result, hemp companies multiplied and CBD products became more widespread.
CBD is the fastest-growing new health and wellness trend to hit the natural market over the past years and has given medical cannabis a whole new name.
At first, the most common method of consuming CBD was an oral tincture. A few drops or sprays of CBD, taken sublingually, were how most people got their daily dose until the use of CBD began to surge and new methods of consumption like vaping, edibles, and capsules began surfacing up.
As popular as CBD has become, there is still a lot of confusion and misinformation circulating around the internet.
Most of the confusion stems from how to properly consume CBD products.
One of the most common questions we get at CBD School is: “Is it okay to vape any CBD tinctures?”
This article will explain more about whether you can vape a CBD tincture. But first, let’s get explain what is a CBD tincture.
A tincture is simply a mix of concentrated herbal extract that is made by soaking herbs in a given liquid. Over a few weeks, the liquid becomes concentrated with the extracts of the herbs. So, the herbs will be strained from its micro-ingredients that migrate to the liquid. You will be left with a potent tincture that you can ingest 1 .
In the old time, the liquid used to be alcohol; but now, food oils and flavors are the solvent used.
So, a CBD tincture is any liquid CBD oil product that is designed to be taken by mouth.
People use these products in the form of drops underneath the tongue (sublingual) or a spray in the mouth (CBD Sprays).
In the CBD world, CBD tincture and CBD oil are often used interchangeably and both mean the same thing. CBD Drops is also another name for this product.
What makes these tinctures valuable is their ability to be highly bioavailable. The body can easily absorb them. The National Center for Biotechnology Information explains further that when compared to other kinds of CBD, tinctures are the most bioavailable due to their low concentration in other ingredients 2 .
When we say CBD vape oil, we refer to any liquid CBD product meant for use in a vaporizer.
Other common terms for CBD vape oil are CBD E-Liquid, CBD E-Juice, and CBD vape juice.
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Vaping CBD has shown to offer the fastest delivery of CBD to the body and usually offers the quickest relief from conditions like anxiety and chronic pain. Increased research also suggests that vaping CBD can help you quit smoking 3 .
Due to its fast action and onset of therapeutic properties, more people prefer to vape CBD than use its other products. While vaping CBD can be effective and offer speedy alleviation of several different symptoms, there’s still perplexity about vaping itself. The act of vaping has been linked to several adverse effects like the inflammation of the airways. Make sure you understand all the risks associated with vaping before considering it as a way of incorporating CBD into your system. For smokers, vaping may seem as the ‘healthiest option’; but, it is essential to understand that vaping still has risks.
Is All CBD Oil the Same, and Can’t You Just Vape Any CBD Oil?
With the plethora of CBD products that have recently hit the market, it’s easy to become confused about every product!
You’ve got CBD oils and CBD tinctures. Then there’s also CBD vape oil. You can also find CBD cigarettes, another alternative to smoking tobacco. Some companies even made CBD chocolates!
Is there really a difference between these products, and does it really matter what you precisely use in your vaporizer?
As we mentioned earlier, CBD oil and CBD tincture are two words referring to one thing. Both tincture and oil are used interchangeably. These are the liquid CBD products that are meant to be taken orally and are most often dispensed with a dropper or spray.
Before vaping came along, this was by far the most common way to take CBD. Now that vaping caught the public’s attention, you’ll find products like CBD vape oil, which is more commonly (but not always) referred to as CBD e-liquid or CBD vape juice.
So what do all these names refer to? What liquid exactly can be coupled with a vaporizer? People have bene wondering whether CBD tinctures are allowed to be used in vaping.
The answer is: NO! Using CBD oil tinctures can be life threatening if used in a vaporizer.
Whether you’re interested in vaping CBD or have already incorporated it in your lifestyle, you need to understand clearly why CBD vape oil is an extremely important part of the experience.
While they might seem like they’re the same thing, there are some very important differences between the two.
CBD Tincture vs. CBD Vape Oil
Now that you know that the terms CBD oil and CBD tincture are often used interchangeably, there’s something else you should know.
CBD tincture and CBD vape oil both contain CBD but are designed to be used differently.
Designed to be used orally, CBD tinctures are made by extracting CBD from the hemp plant by steeping hemp flowers and leaves in a high-quality alcohol or vegetable/food oil and subsequently applying low heat over a substantial amount of time.
This process allows for the active compounds found in hemp plants to permeate into the alcohol, with any excess alcohol boiled off.
Aside from alcohol extraction, CBD is also commonly extracted from the hemp plant using CO2.
This process results in a concentrated CBD extract, which producers dilute with carrier oils (like olive, hempseed, or coconut oil) that can be easily absorbed and digested by the body, as well as other ingredients (such as different flavors like mint or citrus) to improve its flavor.
Currently, CO2 extraction is considered the industry standard best extraction process and is by far the most popular.
CBD Vape Oil
CBD vape oils are designed to be used in e-cigarettes or vape pens.
To produce this e-liquid, a thinning agent is added to the CBD extract, as concentrated CBD oil is typically too thick to easily flow through most vape pens.
Aside from making the CBD thin enough to make its way through the vape pen, it also creates a higher volume that will increase how long the CBD oil will actually last.
This thinning agent produces the vapor clouds exhaled when vaping CBD.
Different thinning agents used in CBD vape oils include:
• Polyethylene Glycol (PEG)
• Propylene Glycol (PG)
• Vegetable Glycerin (VG)
While vaping in most cases has proven to be a safer alternative to tobacco smoking, more research is needed to examine it in more depth. Many scientists are still determining what is the safest liquid to be vaped that may have the most minimal side effects on health. According to the Florida Health Department, the long term side effects of vaping are still unknown 4 . However, studies indicate that more than 25% of school students are vaping and 4% of adults. The reason why research is still struggling with finding the right answers for the public is the ongoing upsurge of limitless vaping products. Also, the customizable options of vaping is creating unlimited forms of variables that are misleading a good solid study 5 .
According to John Hopkins, vaping in general, and despite the lack of studies, is still an unhealthy practice and should not be replacing smoking. Talk to your doctor before engaging in any new lifestyle change 6 .
In the vaping community, VG is commonly considered one of the best available bases for CBD vape oils because it produces the largest vapor clouds and is considered the safest option of the three. More research is still needed to confirm what is the safest product to be vaping.
Some studies link vaping to stiffness in the soft coverings of the lungs in some individuals. Others link it to irritations of the airways. All in all, one has to be very careful.
No matter how you decide to use CBD products, we recommend avoiding the illicit or cheap “knock-off” markets, especially when buying vape products. Many problems have been reported due to dangerous ingredients identified in the products. Make sure you are picking a transparent manufacturer that is producing high quality products.
Also, it is better to purchase products from a trusted and carefully lab tested source of vape products and vaporizer equipment with proper usage instructions.
Note: Due to recent reports of vape related lung injuries across America, there has been elevated concern for safety related to vaping products. If you are concerned about your health and safety and don’t want to use a vape product, you can always use the many other effective and great ways to use CBD products like capsules, edibles, or topical products.
CBD Tincture Was Not Designed to Be Vaped…That’s Why CBD Vape Oil Was Created
Both CBD tinctures and CBD vape oil products are each made for a specific use.
CBD tinctures are designed to be taken orally, while CBD vape oils are made with additional different ingredients and designed to be used in an e-cig or vaporizer.
CBD vape oils are still made with carrier oils which are considered safe and non-toxic for ingestion. It is the added ingredients in the vape liquid that one has to always keep into consideration.
You could essentially use your CBD vape oil like you would use a tincture (by mouth) and be fine. However, this is not something we recommend. Just because a certain practice is considered relatively safe, doesn’t mean it would not have any side effects.
CBD vape oils are designed for vaping and that’s how they need to be used. The same goes for CBD tinctures. They are designed to be taken orally, which is exactly how they should be used.
Each of these products are optimized for their respective delivery methods.
Many ask us since you can ingest CBD vape oils (which we don’t actually recommend), can you vape CBD tincture? Others consider them the same so w hy not use them interchangeably?
Well, that’s not the way it works. CBD tinctures are definitely NOT designed to be vaped. They are designed to be orally ingested, ONLY!
Most importantly, there are ingredients in CBD tinctures which are safe to ingest orally but can be deadly if vaped. The CDC recently warned the public after a new wave of vape related injuries and deaths happened, especially among young healthy individuals. The public attention became more aware about the possible dramatic side effects of vaping and the possible unhealthy ingredients their liquids may contain 7 .
CBD tinctures (depending on the manufacturer) can sometimes include food grade ingredients which should absolutely not be vaporized.
When these components are vaporized, at high heat, they can harm the lungs or lead to a serious condition called lipoid pneumonia, a condition caused by inhaling oils not meant to be present in the lungs 8 .
Recently in the news, there have been cases of vape related injury (some even leading to death) all across America. The condition of the injured is thought to be related to inhaling food-grade ingredients (like vitamin E) which are otherwise safe in body care or food products BUT not meant for inhalation.
Something else to keep in mind is that there are some CBD tinctures that are made with an alcohol base. The last thing you want to do is inhale alcohol into your lungs. Additionally, the risks are very high with alcohol based liquids as they have the possibility to catch on fire. The last thing you want is your vaporizer to go up in flames.
To sum it all up, it is essential to understand that CBD tinctures aren’t just non-recommended, but can actually be dangerous. You need to keep your CBD tinctures and CBD vape oils separate and used differently!
Vaping CBD and using CBD tinctures orally are by far, the two most popular methods of adding CBD into your lifestyle. But, that doesn’t mean that both methods can be swapped out for one another. What needs to be vaped has to be vaped; and, what should be taken orally should be taken orally.
So, to answer the question “Can I vape CBD tinctures?”
The answer is a definite NO, you can’t and please don’t even attempt to try it not even once. There is no reason to even try since both CBD tinctures and CBD vape oils are equally readily available on the market today.
For the best results, as well as your safety and the functionality of your vaporizer, use CBD vape oil from a trusted and regulated manufacturer (avoid illicit market products). Use vaping products in a vaporizer device and stick to oral administration when taking a tincture.
One of the most common questions we get at CBD School is: “Is it okay to vape any CBD tinctures?” We answer that question and more in this article.