Have you ever wondered how to make CBD oil at home, and if it’s possible do it yourself?
Cannabidiol (CBD) oils are one of the most popular ways to consume CBD, and it’s not hard to see why. They’re convenient, portable, and easy to use. It’s among the most effective ways to take CBD because CBD Oils are highly bioavailable. Best of all, they’re easy to make yourself, without any expensive or hard-to-find supplies.
Keep reading to learn how to make your own DIY CBD tincture from hemp flower.
In case you don’t already know, CBD is a cannabinoid — a type of natural compound derived from cannabis or hemp — which interacts with the body’s endocannabinoid system to produce a variety of effects. The endocannabinoid system is made up of receptors all over the body that regulates processes like digestion, mood, sleep, and pain, working with specialized neurotransmitters called endocannabinoids.
Like other neurotransmitters, endocannabinoids can become unbalanced. Abnormal endocannabinoid levels have been connected with disorders like fibromyalgia, chronic migraine, post-traumatic stress disorder, and irritable bowel syndrome. CBD and other cannabinoids mimic these neurotransmitters and stimulate their production, which is likely how CBD is able to improve sleep, mood, anxiety levels, pain, and more.
CBD also has natural anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antibacterial, and neuroprotective properties. Plus, it’s non-psychoactive, so you can experience the therapeutic effects of cannabis without the high.
Why use CBD hemp flower to make CBD oil?
Recent changes to U.S. law — the Agricultural Improvement Act of 2018, better known as the 2018 Farm Bill — made hemp federally legal. In turn, this led to an explosion in the popularity of hemp and related products. This includes hemp flower, which is another name for the buds produced by the hemp plant.
Buds from both hemp and psychoactive cannabis (aka, “marijuana”) look almost identical and can be utilized in the same way. That means you can smoke hemp flower, or turn the buds into concentrated tinctures and oils. The only real difference between the two is the cannabinoid content; specifically, hemp contains 0.3% or less THC.
Regardless of whether your CBD is made from hemp or psychoactive cannabis, it’s structurally the same and offers the same benefits. So why use hemp flower? One of its most attractive qualities is that it comes from plants bred to be high in CBD (and other beneficial cannabinoids and terpenes), making it ideal for CBD tinctures. Plus, since it’s fully legal, it’s easy to buy and ingest hemp flower.
How to make your own CBD oil?
To make your own tincture, you’ll need a mason jar, an oven, a baking sheet, parchment paper, cheesecloth, high-proof alcohol, hemp flower, and something to grind your hemp flower. You’ll also need a container to use for your final product.
How much hemp flower and alcohol to use is up to you. It’s flexible since it depends on the plant you’re using, your tolerance levels, and how potent you’d like your tincture to be. Ultimately, this means making your own tincture may require some experimentation to determine how much to use.
Making CBD Oil: Our step-by-step guide
- Step 1: Prepare your hemp flower. First, you’ll want to grind it to a fine consistency. Spread the hemp flower over a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, and bake at 220 degrees F in the oven for 30-45 minutes. This is called decarboxylation, and it’s necessary to convert CBDA into CBD. Let cool before moving to the next step.
- Step 2: Fill a mason jar with high-proof alcohol, such as Everclear. Mix your decarboxylated hemp flower into the alcohol or you can use something like a Magic Butter machine (check the above video to know more.
- Step 3: Close the jar, and let it sit for a few weeks away from sunlight, preferably in the freezer. Shake the mixture once per day. Alternatively, if you don’t want to wait, you can simmer the jar (make sure it’s glass) in a water bath for 20 minutes at 170 degrees F, and then move to step 4. If using the water bath method, place your jar into cold water and heat slowly on low heat, and do not leave it unattended (alcohol is flammable!).
- Step 4: Use a cheesecloth to strain the mixture into a vial, bottle, or jar. That’s it! Keep your tincture stored in a cool and dark place, and mix well before use. Before using your tincture for the first time, be sure to test its potency by taking one or two drops.
Pros and cons of making CBD oil at home
By making your own CBD tincture, you can the strain of cannabis used to produce the tincture. This means you can buy hemp flower with a profile suited to your needs since every strain has varying amounts of cannabinoids and terpenes, all of which come with their own effects. Not to mention, making your own tincture can even save you a few bucks.
That said, making your own tincture isn’t for everyone. The DIY route produces a full spectrum tincture, which means it contains everything extracted from your hemp flower, including traces of THC and other cannabinoids, like CBN and CBG. For most people, this is a good thing, because it means you’ll benefit from the entourage effect; these other cannabinoids and terpenes enhance the properties of CBD while bringing their own benefits to the table.
But if you’re sensitive to THC or otherwise need to avoid it completely, you’ll want to buy broad-spectrum or CBD isolate tinctures, which are THC-free. Unfortunately, it’s not possible to make CBD isolate yourself from hemp flower, at least not without specialized equipment.
Another potential downside is that it’s almost impossible to precisely calculate potency with homemade tinctures. They’re also made with alcohol, which can cause a burning sensation and shouldn’t be held under the tongue like oil-based tinctures.
If you’re sensitive to alcohol, it may be best to buy a CBD oil tincture instead. These are usually made with a carrier oil, like hemp seed oil or MCT oil, rather than alcohol. Some people also find the taste of DIY CBD tincture mixes well with lemon-lime soda or drinks with similar flavor profiles.
Closing thoughts: is making CBD oil at home hard?
As you can see, making your own CBD tincture from hemp flower is pretty straightforward. It’s easy to use, too; simply add a few drops to any food or drink, or ingest it directly.
It may take some trial and error to figure out how much to use to find relief, but making your own tincture is undoubtedly the best way to experience the powerful health benefits that CBD-rich hemp flower has to offer.