Isolate and Full-Spectrum – What Does It Mean?

Isolate and Full-Spectrum – What Does It Mean?

You should always read the labels on your CBD products. However, if you don’t understand the terminology, does it really help to read the labels? It’s important to understand different terms used to describe your CBD products, like isolate CBD or full-spectrum CBD. This distinction is central to understanding what you’re taking. Learn more about the differences in these two CBD extracts to be more aware of what could work best for you.

Isolate CBD

Just like the name suggests, isolate CBD is extracted using a method that eliminates all other cannabinoids so that only CBD remains. Therefore, using a product made with pure, isolate CBD will ensure that you won’t experience any psychoactive effects of the cannabis plant.

This type of CBD extract is perfect for people who don’t want to feel “high” but still want the other benefits of using CBD. Isolate CBD can be found in many different products, including edibles, topicals, and sublinguals.

Full-Spectrum CBD

Conversely, full-spectrum CBD does contain trace amounts of other cannabinoids, including THC. Legally, CBD products can only contain up to 0.3 percent THC. While that percentage sounds small, it can add up if you’re taking a substantial amount of CBD edibles, topicals, or sublinguals that are full-spectrum over a long period of time. High-potency products could also result in feeling the effects of THC and possibly show up on a drug test after extended use.

As best practice, always check the label and read the product description to make sure that it does not contain more than the legal amount of THC.

Isolate CBD vs. Full-Spectrum CBD

If you’re still not sure which CBD extract is right for you, consider a side by side comparison. Isolate CBD is flavorless and odorless. That means you won’t really taste it in edibles or sublinguals. On the other hand, full-spectrum CBD still contains terpenes and flavonoids, which does retain some of the smell and flavor of the cannabis plant. It’s up to you whether you’d enjoy the flavor and odor.

Plus, if you want to take large doses of CBD but don’t want any of the psychoactive effects of THC, isolate is your best bet. This is particularly important for anyone who has to undergo frequent drug testing.

The Entourage Effect

Another term you’ll often hear in the realm of CBD is the Entourage EffectIt refers to the ways in which CBD and other cannabinoids work together. Research suggests that CBD is more effective when coupled with other cannabinoids because it increases the potential of binding to the endocannabinoid receptors that are found throughout the body. 

However, it’s important to note that more research needs to be done in order to conclude whether using CBD along with other cannabinoids makes a significant impact on improving delivery and efficacy. For the time being, using isolate CBD is believed to be just as effective as using full-spectrum CBD.

Understanding Your Options

Now that you know more about these two CBD extracts, you can make a more informed decision about your purchase. Whether you choose full-spectrum or isolate, there are additional things to consider. 

Find a trusted brand that tells consumers where they source their hemp for extraction and receives third party testing of their products. Checking labels and product descriptions for your CBD products will help you make a better decision so that you choose the best products for your needs.

Works Cited

1.   Chander, Raj. “How CBD and THC Work Together: The Entourage Effect.” Healthline, Healthline Media, 13 Dec. 2019,

2.   MediLexicon International. (n.d.). CBD isolate vs. full-spectrum CBD: Differences and benefits. Medical News Today. Retrieved March 24, 2022, from

3.   Healthline Media. (n.d.). CBD isolate vs. full-spectrum: How to choose and best products. Healthline. Retrieved March 24, 2022, from