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Full Spectrum vs Broad Spectrum CBD

Full-Spectrum CBD
Broad Spectrum CBD

The main difference between full spectrum CBD oil and broad spectrum CBD oil is whether or not the CBD oil contains THC. This difference is critical to many people and should be known by all. Because your needs and wants in a cannabis product should be the driver in. So, even if you aren’t concerned about the levels of THC in your cannabis products. Knowing the ins and outs of the products you can buy at your local dispensary can help. You make more informed decisions for a better and more potent experience. This article starts you off on the journey in learning about the different categories of oils.

What is the Difference Between CBD and THC?

Don’t just think it is all the same product serving the same purpose. If you fall into that trap you may never actually buy the products that work for you. Instead, you need to know if you want to feel the classical high associated with cannabis

Full Spectrum CBD

There is a middle ground as well.

THC is the component of the cannabis bud that creates the sense of euphoria in your body and being. CBD, another derivative of the cannabis plant, has all of the same associated with THC but lacks the high that can be debilitating or hunger inducing. Often people specifically want one or the other based on the purpose of their cannabis journey.

Combination of CBD and THC

However, as referenced above there is another option. Many tinctures and oils can be purchased as a mixture.

Further, CBD and THC are only 2 of over 110 different and distinct extracts from the cannabis plant. When you buy a joint and smoke the bud, you are inhaling smoke that contains all of the components of the bud, consider this the whole bud experience.

Because not all people are interested in smoking when they want to enjoy CBD or THC, the industry has developed methods to isolate the derivatives of cannabis. The combination of different constituents defines the label of the product.

Broad Spectrum CBD oil

How to Read a CBD Oil Label

As noted above, the constituents of the CBD oil will determine what it is called. Just like coffee is called something different depending on the amount of milk, foam, and espresso, cannabis products are considered different when the derivative ratios change. Read the following descriptions to learn about what THC Isolate, CBD Isolate, Full Spectrum CBD Oil, and Broad Spectrum CBD oil means, and which one might be best for your needs.

THC Isolate

When you are thinking pot, you are thinking about THC. THC is the main derivative in cannabis that gets you the classic high when smoked. For those that don’t want to smoke all the time, or at all, the industry had to develop a way to deliver the same component but without the need to light up.

There are three main ways to extract the THC from the plant. The main ways are through extraction via butane, ethanol, and CO2.

This extraction pulls the THC out of the plant allowing for a pure, almost honey raw THC to form. This is converted to a liquid via mixture with a stable oil and is ready for consumption. So, with a THC isolate, you are getting just that: THC.

If you are looking for any other cannabinoids in your cannabis product you will need to look elsewhere.

Broad Spectrum

CBD Isolate

On the other end of the spectrum, CBD isolate contains none of the high inducing THC and all of the producing CBD. Smoking hemp isn’t as popular as smoking a full THC bud, so most CBD connoisseurs rely on CBD extracts for their oils.

In similar ways as THC, CBD is extracted from the cannabis plant, mainly hemp, via three primary means. CBD can be pulled from the plant via steam extraction, solvent extraction, or CO2 extraction.

Steam is high inefficient and can damage the end products, though it is very cheap. Solvents like butane and ethanol are dangerous for humans to ingest and isn’t recommended. Again, CO2 extraction is the optimal option for pure CBD chemical isolation.

Full Spectrum CBD

Full Spectrum CBD Oils

What if you want some of the other cannabinoids from the cannabis plant?

Remember that CBD and THC are only two of the 100+ list of chemical constituents to the cannabis plant. The whole plant therapy, or entourage effects, can have different and effects as compared to the isolates.

Full spectrum should be taken at face value. If you buy something that reads as spectrum CBD oil, then that means the entire cannabinoid breakdown of that cannabis plant is present in the oil.

So, this may mean that the oil will have CBD and THC. The ratios between the cannabinoids should be considered depending on your needs and goals. However, the main purpose of the full spectrum CBD oil is to deliver as much of the plant to you as possible without having to smoke the bud.

Broad Spectrum CBD

Many people, though, really are not interested in consuming different amounts of THC. They are only focused on taking CBD but would like to ingest as many of the cannabinoids as possible.


Don’t worry. The industry has a solution!

Spectrum CBD oil refers to the inclusion of all cannabinoids from the specifically used cannabis plant EXCEPT for THC. This allows you to enjoy the cannabis product without the fears that you will have a bad experience or get high while still having to perform under certain circumstances.

Broad spectrum CBD refers to the potential spectrum of available cannabinoids. So, broad means that it is a broad list of included cannabinoids, but not a complete or full spectrum. You will still get all of the cannabis from the included CBD and other cannabinoids.

Focus on Your Needs and Wants

Always base your purchases off of what your needs and goals are, not anyone else’s. This requires you to think about what you want and match up the right product. Hopefully, the descriptions above will help you in your purchase decisions.