Science: Yes, There Is A Difference Between CBD Oil And Hemp Seed Oil

The abundance of conflicting information about CBD/hemp oil has made it difficult for consumers to make informed decisions when buying hemp-derived products. Chances are, at some point in your CBD/hemp oil journey you’ve found yourself asking, “What’s the difference between CBD oil and hemp oil, anyway?” Trust us, you’re not alone.

To put it simply, the cause of confusion comes down to just one word: seed. Hemp seed oil is often used interchangeably with CBD/hemp oil, but hemp seed oil is something different. Hemp seed oil comes from a different part of the plant than CBD/hemp oil. Because of this, hemp seed oil has differences in appearance, and even offers different potential benefits. 

There’s little to no CBD or THC, the active ingredient of cannabis, in hemp seed oil.

Hemp seed oil is extracted from the seeds of the hemp plant. Because hemp seed oil comes from hemp seeds, there’s little to no CBD or THC, the active ingredient of cannabis. The protein and fatty acids in hemp seed oil make it a useful ingredient for both cooking and beauty product formulas.

CBD/hemp oil, however, can be derived from both cannabidiol-rich strains of cannabis and hemp plants. CBD/hemp oil can be extracted from the leaves, flowers, and stalk of the hemp plant. CBD oil contains trace amounts of THC, though under FDA regulations, the THC content cannot exceed 0.3%. The active ingredient of CBD oil is commonly listed as “whole plant extract,” “CBD distillate,”  and “CBD isolate.” CBD/hemp oil tinctures also often include a carrier oil, such as MCT or olive oil. CBD/hemp oil is typically the main component in many CBD-rich products such as edibles and topicals that allege to alleviate stress and anxiety. 

Another major difference between the two is the extraction process. Hemp seed oil is extracted using a cold-press extraction method and has a dark or light green hue. CBD/hemp oil is extracted using a solvent-based extraction process that includes the whole hemp plant resulting in a clear or dark gold hue and an earthy plant flavor. 

So, remember, hemp seed oil comes from the seeds of the hemp plant and contains no CBD. CBD/hemp oil comes from the whole hemp plant and is rich in CBD. The choice between hemp seed oil and CBD/hemp oil therefore comes down to what you hope to get out of the product. If nothing else, you just became a little bit smarter at your next cocktail party.