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  • by Nicola Boulton August 31, 2022 5 min read

    CBD Isolate Vs. Full-Spectrum CBD: What Is the Difference

    There are different types of CBD. They include full spectrum, broad spectrum, and CBD isolate. These types have different compositions. The major difference between CBD isolate, and full-spectrum CBD is that full-spectrum CBD contains all the cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant, including THC, which has a psychoactive effect. In contrast, CBD isolate contains pure CBD with no other cannabinoids. This article discusses everything you need to know about CBD isolate and full spectrum CBD.

    What is CBD?

    According to Abernethy (2019), CBD is an active chemical compound in the marijuana hemp plant. CBD compound does not make its users high, making it popularly known for its potential health benefits such as pain-relieving, treatment of cancer-related symptoms, mental health-related conditions, and many other therapeutic benefits.

    Is CBD Legal?

    CBD is legal in some states like in the U.S. The legality of CBD depends on the state's law. In countries where hemp growing is legalized, it is very hard to illegalize CBD. FDA allows the growing of cannabis hemp plant containing little THC compound, as Mead (2017) described. The legalized CBD products should not contain more than 0.3% THC. This THC content is believed that it cannot cause high to the users.

    What is CBD Isolate?

    CBD isolate is one of the types of CBD which contains the pure form of CBD. According to Marinotti et al. (2021), this CBD has the highest concentration of cannabidiol ranging from 99%. This is the best form of CBD for those who want to try CBD products without having to ingest THC compound, which causes a high effect. It is extracted by using various processes where all other compounds found in the cannabis hemp plant are removed, leaving behind the pure CBD in a crystal form. It can then be grounded into powder to make it easier to consume. It does not have a distinct taste or smell, so it can be used by people who don't like the earthy flavor of CBD.

    How is CBD Isolate Made?

    CBD isolate is made using several steps to get pure CBD as the end product. The commonly used methods are CO2 or ethanol-based extraction methods. To get 99% of the final product, all fats, lipids, impurities, and other unwanted plant particles are removed, leaving behind pure CBD. Regardless of the extraction method, the products undergo the third-party lab test for CBD levels, solvents, heavy metals, and pesticides.

    Benefits of CBD Isolate

    • CBD isolate removes all the other cannabis chemicals in the cannabis plant, leaving pure CBD. This will help beginners familiarize themselves with CBD products without getting THC. Although CBD isolate does not have THC and other cannabidiol, it will give CBD benefits.
    • CBD isolate can be consumed in different forms. It can be added to food and drinks. It comes in different forms, like edibles. You can take your CBD isolate in various ways, like consuming it in your favorite drinks.
    • CBD isolate has the easiest way of adding it to your recipe. Its tasteless and odorless properties can be adapted to many different functions.
    • It is used in various products like topical, oil, tinctures, edibles, soft gels, and capsules.

    What is Full-Spectrum CBD?

    Full-spectrum CBD products contain all the cannabinoids found in the cannabis hemp plant, such as essential oils, terpenes, and little amount of THC, which does not exceed 0.3%.

    Benefits of Full-Spectrum CBD

    Although full-spectrum CBD contains THC, the percentage of it is very low to get one high. Many CBD products are made in the full-spectrum form, as Voelkel et al. (2013) explained. The presence of other cannabinoids in full-spectrum CBD has the potential benefits of helping the body to keep its homeostasis.

    Full-spectrum CBD contains CBC, CBDV, CBG, and CBD cannabinoids which are essential in supporting various body systems. CBN, for instance, helps in promoting calmness and the feeling of relaxation in the whole body.

    Full-spectrum CBD contains vitamins, fats, and proteins essential in the body.

    Is Full-Spectrum CBD Legal

    The legalization of full-spectrum CBD depends on the state's law. In states where the use of cannabis is regulated, full-spectrum CBD is not legalized because it contains some traces of THC, which can get the user high. In such countries, CBD isolate will be better because it will give you the desired result with no chance of showing in a drug test, unlike full-spectrum CBD, which has a chance of showing in a drug test.

    Which Should I Use Between CBD Isolate and Full-Spectrum CBD?

    The question of which CBD you should use depends on your desires. Some people get the benefits of CBD after using full-spectrum CBD, while others prefer CBD isolate. Most people with CBD experience use full-spectrum CBD, while beginners prefer starting with CBD isolate to gauge their body response. Some people are very sensitive to THC, so taking full-spectrum CBD will negatively affect their body even if it contains very little THC.

    The best part is that all CBD products give the same benefits to the mind and body. Therefore, don't worry about what to use because they all play the same role in a person's mind and body. Learn more about full spectrum cbd and the entourage effect

    Difference between CBD Isolate and Full-Spectrum CBD

    • Full-spectrum CBD contains all of the cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant, such as terpenes, flavonoids, THC, and other cannabinoids found in the cannabis hemp plant. CBD isolate only contains pure CBD extracted from the cannabis plant by removing all the other cannabinoids making it 99% pure.
    • Full-spectrum CBD products contain 0.3% of THC, a cannabinoid in the cannabis plant with a psychoactive effect. Although that content is very little to get one high, some people report high feelings after using it.
    • Some studies show that although CBD isolate provides health benefits, its effects may be less notable than full-spectrum CBD, which contains all the cannabinoids that give the entourage effects. Learn more about 4 reasons to try hemp derived full spectrum cbd tincture


    Although both CBD isolate and full-spectrum CBD are used for the same benefits, they are very different because CBD isolate made of pure CBD that does not contain any other cannabinoids. Full-spectrum CBD, on the other hand, contains all the cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant, resulting in an entourage effect increasing its benefits. Read the above article and choose one that best suits your preferences.


    Abernethy, A. (2019). Hemp Production and the 2018 Farm Bill. U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

    Marinotti, O., & Sarill, M. (2020). Differentiating Full-Spectrum Hemp Extracts from CBD Isolates: Implications for Policy, Safety and Science. Journal of Dietary Supplements, 17(5), 517–526.

    Mead, A. (2017). The legal status of cannabis (marijuana) and cannabidiol (CBD) under U.S. law. Epilepsy & Behavior, 70, 288-291.

    Voelkel, H., LeCroy, C. W., Williams, L. R., & Holschuh, J. (2013). The Full Spectrum. Best Practices in Mental Health, 9(1), 31–46.

    Nicola Boulton
    Nicola Boulton

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