Tinctures vs Extracts: What’s the Difference?

There are several forms of cannabis delivery methods. You can smoke joints, bongs, or dab. You can take cannabis pills. And then there’s tinctures vs extracts.  

Cannabis, Cannabis seeds, Cannabis oil Placed on a wooden floor
Cannabis, Cannabis seeds, Cannabis oil Placed on a wooden floor

Both tinctures and extracts are liquid forms of cannabis. They can be taken sublingually. They can be added to foods and beverages. They can be flavored. They can contain different concentrations of THC.

So what’s the difference?

This article will explore tinctures vs extracts so you can make the right decision the next time you shop for cannabis products.

Tinctures vs Extracts

When comparing tinctures vs extracts, it’s essential to remember that all tinctures are extracts, but not all extracts are tinctures. Tinctures are subsets of extracts. Let’s take a closer look at what sets them apart.  

What are Extracts?

Extracts are highly concentrated cannabis herbal formulations. They are so concentrated you may find cannabis sediment floating around at the bottom of the jar. The jars should be shaken before consumption.

The extracts are one part herb and one part extract, typically mixed at a 1:1 ratio. They are usually prepared with non-alcoholic solvents like vinegar, water, or glycerin. The herb is typically dried before it is used.

What are Tinctures?

Tinctures are typically not as concentrated as extracts. Concentrations vary, but most offer a 6:1 or 8:1 ratio of solvent to herb. They also usually use alcohol as the solvent. They use fresh cannabis material as opposed to dried cannabis.

Tinctures vs Extracts: Which is Better?

There is no right answer to the question, tinctures vs extracts which is better? It depends on your wellness goals. However, here are some pros and cons to consider.

  • Preparation: Tinctures are easy to make at home. Extracts, on the other hand, involve a tedious preparation process. If you don’t prepare tinctures properly, you can strip off the essential oils.
  • Potency: Extracts are more potent than tinctures.
  • Storage: Both products are easy to store and have long shelf lives.
  • Usability: Both products are easy to use. However, you must shake extracts before using them to ensure they are well mixed for optimal effects.

How to Use Tinctures and Extracts

Medical marijuana treatment concept
Medical marijuana treatment concept

There are not many tinctures vs extracts differences in terms of dosing. Here are some methods you can use.

  • Dab Rings: Dab rigs are similar to bongs, but the product is placed on the head of a dab nail instead of inside a bowl. The nail is heated, and the product is inhaled. Both extracts and tinctures can be dabbed. However, dabbing is typically reserved for stronger products making extracts a preferred choice.
  • Vaping: Vape cartridges typically contain extracts that can be inhaled via a vape pen.
  • Cooking with Cannabis: Tinctures and extracts can be added to food and beverages to enhance the experience.
  • Infusing Bowls and Joints: Some cannabis users may add tinctures and extracts to their bowls and joints to increase the potency.
  • Mix Tinctures and Extracts: Tinctures and extracts don’t necessarily contain cannabis. They can contain other herbs that increase well-being. If you have a non-cannabis tincture, you may add a cannabis extract to change the desired effects.
  • Mix Them into Topicals: Cannabis topicals may reduce pain or improve the look of the skin. You can mix tinctures or extracts into your favorite lotions to increase their benefits.
  • Use Them to Fill Capsules: You can purchase empty capsules at your favorite vitamin and supplement shop and fill them with a cannabis tincture or extract to provide a discreet method of cannabis consumption.

Tinctures vs Extracts: How are they Made?

Tinctures can be made at home by soaking cannabis in oil, vegetable glycerin, or high-proof alcohol. Other oils can be added for additional effects.

Extracts require a scientific approach which typically involves soaking the cannabis in a solvent and heating or freezing it to a certain temperature to separate the cannabinoid. The process must be performed by a professional using the proper equipment. Popular methods include:

  • Butane honey oil extraction
  • Supercritical CO2 oil extraction
  • Ethanol extract
  • Water extraction
  • Isopropyl oil extraction

Full Spectrum vs. Broad Spectrum vs. Isolate

Extracts and tinctures are available in full-spectrum, broad-spectrum, and isolate formulations. Here are the differences to be aware of.

  • Full Spectrum: A full-spectrum product will contain CBD, THC, and other cannabinoids and terpenes. The combination of cannabinoids and terpenes enhances the product’s effects.
  • Broad Spectrum: Broad spectrum typically refers to CBD products only. The product will contain CBD and other cannabinoids and terpenes, but it will not contain THC.
  • Isolate: Isolates can refer to THC and CBD. They are highly concentrated forms of the chosen cannabinoid mixed with a carrier oil. Isolates are typically extracts due to their highly concentrated constituents.

What are Standardized Extracts?

Tinctures vs Extracts 3
Tinctures vs Extracts 3

Standardized extracts are herbal extracts with one or more of the active ingredients available as a fixed amount expressed as a percentage. The extract provides a precise measure of the active ingredient, so they are more potent and effective. However, they often favor one ingredient over the others thereby diminishing the effects of the complementary ingredients.

However, some standardized formulations do not minimize the other ingredients. The extracts are created with all ingredients added in the regulated proportions.

420 Central is a Trusted Provider of Tinctures vs Extracts

Now that you know the tinctures vs extracts differences, you can make smart purchasing decisions. 420 Central is the first supplier to call.

South Coast Safe Access provides high-quality products manufactured by trustworthy brands. We offer a wide selection of pre-rolls, flower, accessories, tinctures, extracts, capsules, vapes, and more. Contact us to discover how we can improve your well-being.

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