Hemp Oil vs. CBD Oil? What’s Truly the Difference?


DATE: MARCH 13, 2020

Hemp oil and CBD oil testing

Hemp oil and CBD oil are very different things, even though they originate from the same plant. The confusion between hemp oil and cbd oil partly comes from how companies market their products. To make matters more confusing, sometimes the words hemp, cannabis, CBD and cannabis sativa are thrown into the mix to describe hemp oil and CBD oil, and are used interchangeably, even though they mean different things. So, let’s try to explain:

Hemp is Not the Same as Cannabis

We hear a lot of people ask: is hemp marijuana? The answer is no, but they are from the same plant species. The fact is that hemp and cannabis are different varieties of the plant species, Cannabis sativa. Some key differences: cannabis naturally contains high levels of THC, the psychoactive compound that gets you “high”, but has a small amount of CBD. Meanwhile, hemp is loaded with CBD and has a small amount of THC. When made for legal consumption, manufacturers are required to modify the CBD oil to have no more than .3% or lower THC levels. The hemp plant also has multiple uses besides making cbd and hemp oil. It can be used to heal the soil, make clothing, be a better resource to make paper goods rather than wood, bio-fuel, housing insulation (hempcrete), and more. Humans and hemp have a long history together, spanning 10,000 years. Pretty crazy, right?

What is the Difference Between Hemp Oil and CBD Oil?

Hemp oil (or hemp seed oil) is made from the seeds of the hemp plant, and contains no CBD or any other cannabinoid (fun fact: there are 113 known cannabinoids in the hemp plant). By contrast, CBD oil is made from the leaves, flowers, and stalk of the hemp plant. Hemp oil is known for its nutritional benefits including protein, fiber and omega 3 & 6 fats, while CBD oil can be known to help manage anxiety, provide significant pain relief, and be a sleep aid.

Check the Label for Hemp Oil and CBD Oil

Inaccurate product labeling has created lots of confusion about the difference between hemp seed oil and CBD oil. Since the 2018 Farm Bill, there’s been a boom in hemp and CBD products, which has made it a little tricky to regulate. Some products confuse the terms like hemp, cannabis, and CBD on their packaging – intentionally or not – and leave customers bewildered when trying to figure out what they’re actually buying. What’s the solution to knowing the ingredients in your CBD or hemp oil? Simply check the label. If you’re buying CBD oil, look for terms like “cannabidiol” or “CBD.” For hemp oil, look for ingredients like “hemp seed oil” or “cannabis sativa seed oil.” Some hemp oil or cbd oil companies will also have an ingredients list describing specific properties on their website.

Benefits of Hemp Oil

Hemp oil or hemp seed oil is primarily known for its nutritional value and benefits for your skin. This is because hemp oil is a powerhouse of ingredients – it has essential antioxidants, minerals, amino acids, and fatty acids.

Hemp Oil and its Skin Benefits

Hemp oil is used in a variety of beauty products. Because of its Omega-6 and Omega-3 fatty acids, it relieves dry skin and may treat symptoms of eczema and itching. Hemp oil is gentle, so it’s great for people that have sensitive skin, and has a nutty, earthy scent. Since clean skincare has become more popular, the popularity of using hemp oil in skin products is on the rise.

Hemp Oil and its Nutritional Value

Hemp oil is known for its essential fatty acids and minerals that can be beneficial to your health. Hemp oil contains linoleic acid (omega-6) and alpha-linolenic acid (omega-3), which are also found in familiar health foods like walnuts and avocado. Hemp oil also is a source of protein, Vitamin E, and health-enhancing minerals (potassium, magnesium, calcium, iron and others).

How to Use Hemp Oil

Hemp oil can be taken either orally or topically. For topical purposes, hemp oil can be infused into body or face lotion, hair conditioners, as a carrier oil for essential oils,,,the list goes on. In its oral form, hemp oil is usually sold in a tincture bottle, where you can drop the desired dose into your chosen food or drink. People also use hemp oil in cooking. Hemp oil can function as an olive oil alternative in salad dressings, baked goods, or roasted veggies. Note that hemp has a low smoke point, so be careful cooking with it in high heat.

Benefits of CBD Oil

CBD oil is known for its host of health benefits, which can help with anxiety, pain, sleep and other ailments. Since CBD oil contains less than .3% THC, consumers won’t feel the “high” that they do from THC. When looking at CBD oil packaging, you may see full-spectrum hemp  or CBD isolate on the label. Full-spectrum hemp  means that the product includes a small trace of THC and other beneficial ingredients that are extracted from the hemp plant. CBD isolate is  pure CBD – during the extraction process, the THC components are stripped from the plant leaving pure CBD in a powder form.

CBD Oil and Pain

CBD oil has been found to help relieve pain, whether used topically or orally. Some athletes have even favored CBD for pain-relief and recovery. CBD is considered helpful for long-term pain relief, rather than a quick fix for pain. Topical CBD balms are becoming even more popular, since they are easy to incorporate into your routine.

CBD Oil and Sleep

Because CBD oil can help with stress-management and muscle relaxation, it may also improve your quality of sleep. Many CBD products also incorporate melatonin, a natural supplement that triggers your naturally-produced sleep hormone. This can amplify CBD’s sleep-inducing effects.

CBD Oil and Anxiety

CBD oil is known to help reduce levels of anxiety and stress, and helps you get back to a balanced state in your body. CBD naturally interacts with the body’s Endocannabinoid System (ECS), which is known to help maintain your body temperature, sleep cycles, body temperature and more.

How to Use CBD Oil

CBD oil is similar to hemp oil in that it can be taken either orally or topically. Before consuming, we recommend reading the dosage and ingredients on the label, and to see how the company tests their hemp.

Hemp Oil vs. CBD Oil: The Next Step

When choosing between hemp oil vs. cbd oil, it’s crucial to know the difference between the two and their respective uses and health benefits. If you find that oil might not be the right solution for you, there are also other ways to consume CBD like water-soluble powder. If you are leaning towards putting CBD in your drink (could be water, coffee, tea, you name it!), take a look at Zolt’s wide selection of water-soluble CBD powder mixie sticks.