For anyone who is interested in CBD and how cannabis-derived products can be beneficial to our health, there is a lot of information around about the most common delivery methods such as vaping, CBD oil or taking capsules. Many people have also experienced the boom in more ‘casual’ CBD sources such as CBD cafes and restaurants or the sale of CBD edibles and drinks.

However, few people (especially in the UK) will have been aware of CBD dabs – a little known, but effective delivery method.

What are CBD Dabs?

Dabbing is a CBD delivery method that involves the heating up of the CBD and then inhaling its fumes. It is similar to vaping, except that the CBD product that you buy is far more concentrated than an e-liquid. The CBD or hemp material which is to be heated up usually comes in the form of wax, crumble or rocks – or somewhere amongst them.

In a similar way to vaping, the CBD material is heated up and then inhaled, meaning that the CBD goes straight into the bloodstream through the lungs, giving a quick effect. However, due to the fact that when you dab you are heating a substance with a high concentrate of CBD, you get a much higher dose, in a short amount of time compared to the other methods.

CBD dabs usually come in one of three main forms:

  •         CBD wax
  •         CBD crystal
  •         CBD shatter

Due to the fact that the CBD is more concentrated, there is less plant matter to burn and then inhale.

The Dabbing Process

To be able to dab your CBD, you first need to have a dab rig. This works in the same way as a bong. You can also dab with a vape pen for concentrates, e-rig or a wax atomiser.

CBD wax looks like wax, is added to the rig, heated and then inhaled.

CBD crystals are made from CBD isolate – the closest thing that you can get to pure CBD – which is purified and turned into crystal. It usually looks like a fine powder – like icing sugar. You add the crystals to the rig where you then heat it and inhale.

CBD shatter is solid and usually comes in the form of white, glass-like rocks. It is made using a filtration process and you will normally need to break it up into smaller amounts to be able to get your dosage right.

CBD ‘budder’ is another CBD substance which can be vaped, having the consistency of butter, is smoother and more malleable than wax.

CBD ‘crumble’ has a flaky consistency which is created during the production process – and is similar to CBD budder.

The easiest way to dab is by using a dab pen, which is very similar to a vape pen, except that it is possible to use other substances as well as e-liquid. The dabbing substance is then placed onto the coil which heats up, and the smoke from this is then inhaled. Alternately, you can use a bong-type contraption, which is also known as a dab rig.

This process will give you a quick hit of fast-acting, effective CBD, without making you high as there is no THC involved.

Some of the advantages of dabbing

There are many reasons why some people prefer dabbing their CBD, rather than other delivery methods. In fact, dabbing is becoming increasingly popular as people begin to see what options are available to them.

Some of the advantages of dabbing include:


  •         It takes effect very quickly
  •         As dabbing products are made from pure CBD, you will most likely not have even a trace of the other cannabinoids in the cannabis plant, like THC
  •         You will inhale less plant matter
  •         Scientists believe that dabbing is less harmful than smoking
  •         If you are using a dab or vape pen, this method can be very discrete
  •         The CBD is pure, and you don’t consume extra sugar or fat

Some of the disadvantages to dabbing

Just like any other delivery method, dabbing isn’t always for everyone. Dabbing might not be for you if:

  •         You are looking for a slow, gradual release of CBD throughout the day – capsules or edibles might be a better option
  •         You want to get the benefits of the other cannabinoids, terpenes and flavonoids in the cannabis plant
  •         You are concerned about being around high temperatures
  •         You are worried about mess – it can be a bit sticky
  •         Some people are put off by the appearance of dabbing
  •         It can be a bit more expensive than other CBD products – but remember that CBD dabs will also have a higher concentration of CBD.

CBD Dosing

Due to the fact that CBD dab products have a high concentration of CBD, a small difference in the amount that you are taking can mean quite a large difference in dose. If you are starting out dabbing, remember that the CBD product is very potent and will give you a hit all at once. For this reason, it is recommended that you start off with a low dosage and gradually increase it until you feel that it is being most effective for you.

If you are buying dabbing products from a reputable producer, they will be able to tell you exactly how much CBD (and other compounds) are included in the product. This can help you to accurately calculate the dosage that you are taking.

The taboo of dabbing

Despite its effectiveness as a CBD delivery method, and it’s rise in popularity, dabbing is still coming up against some obstacles in breaking the taboo. The fact that many people will use a bong or burn rocks can give it the appearance of being a sinister, illicit drug – whilst we all know that CBD is not.

It is the compound, THC, which is the compound in the cannabis plant that will make you high and taking CBD in (arguably) its purest form, is perhaps the method which is actually the least likely to make you high.

However, for people who are looking for higher amounts of CBD which can act quickly and effectively, dabbing is a great option. Anyone who has been in the world of CBD and cannabis-derived products will be only too aware of the continuing fight against these sort of stigmas and will carry on fighting until everybody who is able to benefit from the qualities of CBD is able to get it and take it in the most effective way for them.

Some general points about dabbing CBD

Dabbing is an effective way to get your CBD, being especially useful to people who want to feel its effects quickly. In the same way as vaping, the CBD enters quickly into the bloodstream, through the lungs, but in contrast to vaping, the amount that you get will be much higher.

Dabbing products can also be added to food or even put under the tongue for a different way of taking CBD (although its effectiveness and delivery time will also change).

If you are thinking about trying CBD for the first time, it is important that you speak to your doctor beforehand as it can affect how the body processes certain medicines – possibly making them more, or less effective.

Dabbing is a good delivery option for many people, and as we see it rise in popularity both in the UK and around the world, the hope is that we can not only see it being more accepted by general society, but also more available to those who would benefit from it.

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