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What's the Difference Between Hemp Oil and CBD Oil?

With the explosion of the CBD industry in the last few years, there’s been a lot of new language introduced that ten years ago was mostly unheard of. 

So it’s no wonder that people feel confused about what some of these terms mean - and it’s also not so surprising that there are companies willing to prey on that confusion.

The truth is that CBD oil, hemp seed oil, and hemp oil all offer health benefits, but they certainly do not refer to the same thing

So let’s differentiate these terms, and clarify what exactly it is that Plant Panda is selling.

What is CBD Oil?

To that end, we’ll start with Plant Panda’s signature product - CBD oil. 

CBD is a cannabinoid, or a chemical that is extracted from hemp. Our CBD comes from US grown hemp, and is extracted with CO2 technology (which is one of the cleanest, but also the most expensive type of extraction available).

What we initially pull out of the hemp plant is often referred to as CBD-rich hemp oil. But we further refine this oil, to remove other cannabinoids (like THC) as well as other plant components. 

By the time we’re finished purifying the oil, we’re left with pure CBD isolate. It looks like a fine, white powder. Our pure CBD isolate is fat soluble, so we then mix it with MCT oil to create our tinctures in various concentrations. 

Other companies choose different carrier oils for one reason or another - there are many oils that can be chosen (including hemp seed oil, which we’ll talk about below). We choose MCT oil because it has a long list of health benefits of its own - and it may even help the CBD be digested a bit more easily.

But whatever the carrier oil is, CBD oil is called CBD oil because it contains high amounts of…you guessed it, CBD. There are three main types of CBD oil:

  • Full Spectrum: Contains the full range of cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids
  • Broad Spectrum: Contains CBD and other cannabinoids, but no THC
  • CBD Isolate: 99%+ pure CBD (no THC, no other cannabinoids or plant components) 

You may find companies that refer to their CBD oil as hemp oil, which we’ll talk about further on. That’s fine as long as they are clear about what exactly they are selling, and how much CBD you can expect in the oil.

The whole extraction and formulation process for a properly dosed CBD oil is what makes it more expensive than the next product on our list, hemp seed oil. 

So whoever you buy your CBD oil from, make sure to check those third party lab reports to ensure that they are selling you what you want.

What is Hemp Seed Oil?

Okay. On to the next word in our glossary: hemp seed oil.

Hemp seed oil is basically self-explanatory - it’s the oil that is extracted from the seeds of a hemp plant.

When we at Plant Panda extract CBD from our hemp plants, we don’t use the oil from the seeds - and that’s for a very good reason. There is no CBD, or only trace amounts, in hemp seeds. There are, however, varying amounts of CBD in the bud, leaves, and stems, and they can all be used for CBD extraction. 

But hemp seeds? Basically nothing.

This is why hemp seed oil has been sold legally for many years, while CBD was only explicitly legalized in 2018. Hemp seed oil has basically no cannabinoids, so the government hasn’t been interested in regulating it.

On the other hand, hemp seed oil shouldn’t just be dismissed since, with its abundance of essential fatty acids, it has lots of health benefits of its own. 

You can cook with it, or frankly just take it on its own. And it’s used in tons of beauty products because it doesn’t clog pores and is very moisturizing. There’s also evidence that it is anti-inflammatory.

So, yay for hemp seed oil! 

But just don’t mistake it for CBD oil. It doesn’t have any CBD in it, and you can’t expect the same effects as you would from a high-quality, properly dosed CBD oil.

What is Hemp Oil?

Now we’ll move on to what is by far the most ambiguous term: “hemp oil.” 

Hemp oil can mean pretty much anything a company wants it to mean, which makes it by far the most confusing term available. And there are many companies willing to take advantage of that ambiguity. But why?

Well, there’s really nothing easier than adding hemp seed oil to a product and highlighting the word hemp - perhaps adding a hemp leaf to the label. As a consumer, the immediate assumption is that this is a CBD product. And can be priced as one.

In this way, a product can be sold at the price point of a CBD product without any CBD or other cannabinoids present. The company may not even be making any false claims about their product - but they are preying on consumers’ lack of information about what these terms mean.

This doesn’t mean that using the term “hemp oil” is wrong. It’s actually fine, providing that the company is clear about what they mean by it. But if you, as a consumer, are at all unclear about what is being sold it’s never a bad idea to contact the company directly and ask some questions.

Markers of Quality

Because the CBD industry is still so unregulated, at Plant Panda we’ve taken it on ourselves to maintain a high bar of quality, while still delivering some of the best prices available. 

This means that:

  • We source domestically grown hemp
  • We use clean CO2 extraction technology
  • We test our products thoroughly for both purity and potency
  • We make third party lab reports available to the public
  • We offer ethical pricing
  • We provide a 100% money-back guarantee

And we’re always happy to answer questions about our company or products!