Home » Can You Vape CBD Tinctures? Understanding the Difference Between CBD Vape Oil and CBD Tinctures

Can You Vape CBD Tinctures? Understanding the Difference Between CBD Vape Oil and CBD Tinctures

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CBD has become wildly popular. There’s new research coming out all the time that supports the myriad of benefits it contains, and there are new CBD and hemp companies being formed every day. CBD is the fastest-growing health and wellness trend to hit the natural market in years and has given medical cannabis a whole new name.

For quite some time, the most common method of consumption of CBD was an oral tincture. A few drops or sprays of CBD taken sublingually was how most people got their daily dose until the use of CBD began to surge and new methods of consumption like vaping, edibles, and capsules were introduced.

As popular as CBD has become, there is still a lot of confusion and misinformation circulating around the internet. Most of the confusion stems from how to properly consume CBD products.

One of the most common questions we get at CBD School is: “Is it okay to vape any CBD tinctures?”

We’re going to answer that for you in this article. But first, let’s get some CBD lingo defined…

When we say CBD tincture, we mean any liquid CBD oil product designed to be taken by mouth. In the CBD space, CBD tincture and CBD oil are often used interchangeably and both mean the same thing.

When we say CBD vape oil, we mean any liquid CBD product meant for use in a vaporizer. Other common terms for CBD vape oil are CBD E-Liquid, CBD E-Juice, and CBD vape juice.

Vaping CBD

Vaping CBD has shown to offer the fastest delivery, and usually offers the quickest relief from conditions like anxiety and chronic pain. Increased research also suggests that vaping CBD can help you quit smoking.

Because it works so effectively and offers rapid relief, there are more people vaping CBD than ever before. While we do know that it can be effective and offer speedy alleviation of several different symptoms, there’s still a bit of perplexity about vaping itself.

We get it. That’s why we’re here to end the confusion that surrounds vaping CBD once and for all.

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Photo by Matthew Brodeur on Unsplash

Is All CBD Oil the Same, and Can’t You Just Vape Any CBD Oil?

With the plethora of CBD products that have recently hit the market, it’s easy to become confused about what’s exactly what. You’ve got CBD oil. And CBD tincture. Then there’s also CBD vape oil.

Is there really a difference between these products, and does it really matter what you put in your vaporizer?

For one, CBD oil and CBD tincture really mean the exact same thing. The words tincture and oil are used interchangeably. These are the liquid CBD products that are meant to be taken orally and are most often dispensed with a dropper or spray. Before vaping came along, this was by far the most common way to take CBD.

Now that vaping’s hit the scene, you’ll find products like CBD vape oil, which is more commonly (but not always) referred to as CBD e-liquid or CBD vape juice.

See where the confusion comes in? We get asked all the time if it’s possible to put their CBD tincture into their favorite vaporizer.

Whether you’re interested in vaping CBD or have already started, understanding if you can vape CBD tinctures is an extremely important part of the experience. While they might seem like they’re the same thing, there are some key differences between the two.

CBD Tincture vs. CBD Vape Oil

Now that you know CBD oil and CBD tincture are actually the same thing, there’s something else you should know. CBD tincture and CBD vape oil both contain CBD but are designed to be used differently.

CBD Tincture: Designed to be used orally, CBD tinctures are made by extracting CBD from the hemp plant by steeping hemp flowers and leaves in a high-proof grain alcohol and subsequently applying low heat over a substantial amount of time. This process allows for the active compounds found in hemp plants to permeate into the alcohol, with any excess alcohol boiled off.

Aside from alcohol extraction, CBD is also commonly extracted from the hemp plant using CO2. This processes results in a concentrated CBD extract, which producers dilute with carrier oils (like olive, hempseed, or coconut oil) that can be easily absorbed and digested by the body, as well as other ingredients (such as different flavors like mint or citrus) to improve its flavor.

Currently, CO2 extraction is considered the industry standard best extraction process and is by far the most popular.

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Photo by Quinten de Graaf on Unsplash

CBD Vape Oil: CBD vape oils are designed to be used in e-cigarettes or vape pens. To produce this e-liquid, a thinning agent is added to the CBD extract, as concentrated CBD oil is typically too thick to easily flow through most vape pens. Aside from making the CBD thin enough to make its way through the vape pen, it also creates a higher volume that will increase how long the CBD oil will actually last. This thinning agent also produces the vapor clouds exhaled when vaping CBD.

Different thinning agents used in CBD vape oils include:

• Polyethylene Glycol (PEG)
• Propylene Glycol (PG)
• Vegetable Glycerin (VG)
• Medium Chain Triglyceride Oil (MCT) [Note: MCT oils are also a common carrier oil used in CBD tinctures as well]

When CBD vape oils were first introduced, they were most often made with PEG, PG, or VG. Unfortunately, when these glycol molecules (PEG and PG) are heated, they can break down into carcinogenic (cancer-causing) compounds.

VG is commonly considered one of the best bases for CBD vape oils because it produces the largest vapor clouds and is considered the safest option of the three.  There is some evidence that it can cause stiffness in the soft coverings of the lungs in some individuals, however, which is something to be aware of.

MCT is another base used in CBD vape oils that is generally considered safe to vape. While it won’t produce the large vapor clouds that VG is famous for, MCT isn’t associated with any negative health risks.

CBD Tincture Was Not Designed to Be Vaped…That’s Why CBD Vape Oil Was Created

Both CBD tinctures and CBD vape oil products are each made for a specific use. CBD tinctures are designed to be taken orally, while CBD vape oils are made with different ingredients and designed to be used in an e-cig or vaporizer.

That being said, CBD vape oils are still made with carrier oils which are considered safe and non-toxic for ingestion. PEG, PG, VG, and MCT oil are all considered safe and non-toxic by the FDA. You could essentially use your CBD vape oil like you would a tincture (by mouth) and be fine. Not that this is something we would recommend…just because something’s safe, doesn’t mean you should necessarily do it.

CBD vape oils are designed for vaping and is exactly what they should be used for. The same goes for CBD tinctures. They are designed to be taken orally, which is exactly how they should be used. Each of these products are optimized for their respective delivery methods.

If you can ingest CBD vape oils (which we don’t recommend), can you vape CBD tincture? Essentially, they’re the same thing and only designed for different uses, right? Why not use them interchangeably?

Here’s the thing. CBD tinctures are not designed to be vaped. Not only do they not burn well but will likely taste awful when heated up. CBD vape oil is produced with a special thinning agent (PEG, PG, VG, or MCT) that heats up to produce an inhalable vapor that moves freely through your vaporizer and into your lungs. Vaping a CBD tincture that doesn’t contain the thinning agent ends up being too thick and can clog your vape pen and gunk up your coil, leaving you with a mess that could have otherwise been avoided.

Oils that are burned in a vape pen do evaporate to some extent but begin to burn quickly. When they burn, the vapor turns to a thick smoke that can be especially harsh on the lungs. While there are several advancements in the CBD market, there isn’t a vape pen that exists which is designed to take straight CBD tincture [at least, not to our knowledge at the time of writing].

Something else to keep in mind is that there are some CBD tinctures that are made with an alcohol base. The last thing you want to do is inhale alcohol into your lungs. And while it likely won’t happen, there is the possibility that an alcohol-based tincture could catch on fire. The last thing you want is your vaporizer to go up in flames.

Final Thoughts on Vaping CBD Tinctures

Now that you know that vaping CBD tinctures isn’t only not recommended, but can be dangerous as well, it’s important to keep your CBD tinctures and CBD vape oils separate.

Vaping and taking CBD tinctures orally are by far, the most popular methods of ingestion, but that doesn’t mean the two can be swapped out for one another.

To answer the question “Can I vape CBD tinctures?” once and for all…no, you can’t and there’s really no reason to try when both CBD tinctures and CBD vape oils are both readily available on the market today.

For the best results, as well as your safety and the functionality of your vaporizer, use your vape oil in a vape pen and stick to oral administration when taking a tincture.

References

https://www.liebertpub.com/doi/abs/10.1089/acm.2016.0337

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3127174/

https://www.projectcbd.org/about/safety-and-quality-control/how-safe-your-vape-pen

18 comments

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    • Hey Ryan! Thanks for your great question. While this isn’t something that people typically do, there are certain varieties of CBD vape oils that can both be ingested and vaped. You need to be careful to check all the ingredients on the label and it’s a good idea to check with the manufacturer of the product as well.

      Is there a particular product you had in mind that you are asking about?

      • My CBD tincture is made with MCT oil can this be Vaped? The product I’m using is called USA hemp co CBD tincture says ingredients on co2 CBD oil and MCT oil

        • Hi Kenny thanks for your great question. My best advice would be to reach out to the manufacturer and ask them if the product can be vaped. Generally I tell people to stick to using tinctures orally and vape oils for vaping. But if you want to explore other options, just make sure to do your research and be careful with the device you use and the product you vape. Best wishes 🙂

  • Many vaping and tinctures use only MCT as a carrier, so what is the difference? Why can’t you vape these tinctures or vice versa?

    • Hey Timothy. That’s a great question. Thanks for bringing that up. I have indeed encountered many vape oils and juices made with MCT oil as a carrier. With those products, I assume they could be interchangeably used as tinctures/vape.

      Still I recommend always making sure there are no additional ingredients (flavoring, ingredients meant for ingestion but not vaping, etc.) in the product which you would not want to be vaping. I also recommend making sure you have the right vaporizer to handle the product you want to vape in it.

      Overall, it’s far easier for most people to stick to vape specific and tincture specific products and not mix them. However, I encourage you to do so as long you feel comfortable with it and have done proper research beforehand on the vaporizer you are using and the product you are putting into it.

      I always recommend getting expert advice from a vape store or vape products website and company you trust. Let me know if you have some good recommendations for me as I am always looking to connect with wise people in that field. Thanks! 🙂

  • If you already have a CBD tincture can you just mix it with a thinning agent such as VG to create CBD vape juice?

    Also, when performing CBD extraction is there a difference between VG and MCT in terms of cbd absorption from the plant? Will one produce a stronger product, or sustain terpins more than than the other?

    Thanks!

    • Hi Miranda.

      We don’t recommend making a CBD tincture into a vape product since they are not designed for vaping. If you decide to actually do this, it’s of course entirely up to you. Please be safe.

      CBD is not extracted using VG or MCT.

      If you mean is there a different in the quality of vaping CBD, between VG or MCT, we have never heard of there being a difference. But this would definitely be a good research project!

      Let us know if you have any more questions 🙂

  • Is it OK to use my cbd vape oil beyond the expiration date? If so how much or how long after that date..I am using to help my COPD…

    • Hi Kerri. Thanks for your message. It’s best to use a fresh batch that’s not expired. But so long as it’s not too far past the expiration, I think it will be OK. How far past the expiration is it?

  • Holy cr*p dude, you barely know what you’re talking about. Honestly, the stuff you say with confidence is dubious or incomplete, and the questions you get asked are easy – but you want to refer to someone at a vape shop? Are you kidding me? Ugh.
    So, here’s some “facts” that you may wish to use for a re-write or to guide some actual research.

    Oils are oils. Lipids. Stop there for now.

    Tinctures are concentrates of herbs that have been dissolved (that word means something specific too) or suspended (again, there’s a definition) in a liquid for oral consumption.

    Cannabinoids are lipid soluble. Also alcohol soluble. Heck, a few other solvents work too, but are poisonous or flammable. Water doesn’t work well and VG isn’t so great either. Butter? Works. MCT? Yep. It’s a fractionated coconut oil.

    Don’t tell people that MCT and VG are both ok to vape. Don’t vape lipids in general, but some are ok in gear that is different than VG/PG compatible gear.

    Tinctures, oils and vape liquids (without nicotine) can all be ingested, but the concentration, uptake and taste will vary..

    Referring people to manufactures or telling them to do research is sorta what you should do before writing this stuff
    Anyhow – sorry to be harsh, but there’s an epic amount if bad info and profiteering

  • No. CBD oil and CBD tincture are 2 different substances. This is one of the most misinformed and uneducated articles ever written about cannabinoids. Sincerely, Chief Biochemist and owner of e2 and Peaklighthouse.com.

      • This article is awesome much information very appreciated also I have a question I bought some CBD temperature I usually sublingually I was wondering when I put it under my tongue is stung pretty bad never had that before is that normal thank you

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