What Does CBD Smell Like?
IMPORTANT UPDATE: Is CBD an Anti-Viral Agent with Coronavirus? HERE
Taste. Color. Feeling.
What about the smell?
What does CBD smell like?
Don’t you love that answer?
It really does depend on the kinds of the CBD you’re smelling.
There are other important attributes that go along with that difference in smell!
We’ll get into that later.
Many people are using CBD before stressful situations since research is showing benefits in those situations.
- A first date
- A business meeting
- A public speaking engagement (yes, please!)
- Your mother-in-law
Just check out the research on CBD and Social Anxiety here.
Anyway, the last thing you want before social interaction is to smell weird!
That basically cancels out the benefits of the CBD.
So, let’s look at what to expect with CBD smell.
We’ll go through these different elements.
By the way, CBD has been shown to grow brain neurons in two areas. the Hippocampus (memory, learning, spatial navigation, and more) and the olfactory bulb.
Um. that’s the part of your brain in charge of sense of smell!
..what is CBD’s “smell”?
What does CBD smell like
This depends on the type of CBD and quality.
First, there are two main types of CBD:
- Full-spectrum (more of the plant material in the oil)
- CBD Isolate
CBD Isolate is usually just CBD and a base oil.
With CBD Isolate, there’s very little if any scent.
If anything, you’re likely to smell the base oil depending on what they use.
The three most common base oils:
- Hemp oil – strong “weedy” smell
- Olive oil – strong and heavy smelling scent
- MCT oil – extract from coconut oil – little smell and if any, sweet.
The MCT oil option is very popular and will have a light, sweet smell if anything at all.
We focus on CBD Isolate in MCT oil for many reasons including its smell.
It’s also friendlier to people with allergy and histamine issues.
Umm. that’s about 40-60% of the US population!
This brings up the other much-touted CBD product.
It’s pushed hard at almost every other brand and website.
What does full spectrum CBD smell like?
Strong. Much stronger than CBD Isolate.
Depending on the brand (and how long you’ve had it), it can smell weedy or like wheatgrass.
In fact, it can be very strong smelling.
We’ve tested dozens of the biggest brands.
One of the most popular smells very strong indeed.
In fact, when I would put it on my skin, my husband would complain when I approached him.
To make matters worse, women have a better sense of smell.
The full spectrum CBD has a wheatgrass or weedy smell.
After you’ve opened the bottle, the smell gets stronger over time which makes sense.
There’s literally organic plant material in there!
Check out our Does CBD Expire article.
While you’re at it, if you have any issues with allergies, check out the CBD and Allergies page on why there’s a bigger difference than just the wheatgrass smell you’ll be rocking at the dinner party.
Let’s dig into some questions we get often.
Should CBD smell like weed?
If it’s full-spectrum or in hemp oil, yes.
Let’s face it. the scent of weed comes from the different components in the original plant.
It’s primarily terpenes that give plant matter different smells.
Cannabis is no different with powerful and very distinct terpenes and scents.
Full-spectrum and/or hemp oil will have these same terpenes.
Therefore, they will have a smell.
It’s a bit different from the classic skunk smell of cannabis.
More of a wheat grassy vibe.
It can be quite strong and some people have difficulties with the smell and taste.
CBD Isolate will not have a weedy smell.
There’s very little scent at all.
CBD by itself has no smell.
So it’s just the base oil that might have a scent.
MCT is actually an extract of medium-chain fats so it has even less smell than coconut oil which is pretty hard to detect.
Which brings up a good question.
We’re at the airport.
We have CBD oil in our carry on.
Do drug dogs smell CBD
Please reference the topics above.
CBD isolate should not be detected (unless in hemp oil or hemp seed oil).
Dogs just have a much more sensitive ability to pick up on the terpenes that give cannabis it’s distinctive scent.
CBD Isolate by itself is a white, crystalline substance with no smell.
Think of salt or sugar.
CBD isolate has no real taste either.
We just want to use MCT oil as the base.
Olive oil will also not have a problem with drug dogs but who wants to smell like an Olive Garden menu?
Hemp oil may be picked up by drug dogs since the terpenes will be present.
Many sites sell the benefits of terpenes and flavonoids but there in such small amounts and with very little research.
CBD is heavily researched (see List of CBD benefits here).
If you’re traveling, CBD Isolate with MCT oil.
Also, if you have allergy or histamine issues.
The best CBD to have is no scent.
All the sections above lead to this.
For the best CBD with no smell, it’s CBD Isolate in MCT oil.
A popular option with 3rd party safety testing and the best cost per mg of CBD is below.
This is also the easiest for people’s immune response to allergens.
Another question comes up from people who probably not using CBD Isolate.
What if CBD smells fishy
Maybe don’t take it.
Most likely, it’s full-spectrum CBD or hemp oil.
The hemp oil could have gone bad or is just getting long in the tooth.
We’ve tested some of the biggest brands and some of them will get pretty goopy and smelly after a few weeks unless refrigerated.
Even then, full-spectrum has a lot of plant material in the oil.
What happens to lettuce when you leave it out.
Even if refrigerated, that lettuce isn’t going to last forever.
That fishy smell may just be the full-spectrum hemp oil smell.
We’ve spoken to many people where it’s a deal-breaker.
Keep in mind that most of our what we taste comes from the smell.
If CBD smells bad, it’s going to taste even worst!
We have to able to take this to get the benefits of CBD.
CBD Isolate in MCT oil.
We designed our CBD to be clean and smell likewise:
The safest bet for no smell CBD.
Always work with a doctor or naturopath with any supplement!
The information provided here is not intended to treat an illness or substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment from a qualified healthcare provider.
The type of CBD can smell like weed, wheat grass, or worse. Or it can be pretty unscented. What Does CBD Smell Like?
The Fragrance of Marijuana Before and After Consumption
Marijuana is the dried leaves and flowers of the cannabis plant. Cannabis has psychoactive and medicinal properties because of its chemical makeup.
Marijuana can be rolled up in a handmade cigarette (a joint), in a cigar, or in a pipe (a bong). It can be used for pain relief, to treat anxiety, or for recreation.
In many states, the sale and use of marijuana without a prescription is still illegal.
You can usually tell if someone has been smoking marijuana by detecting the scent of piney, slightly skunky grass that smoked cannabis leaves behind.
But figuring out for sure if what you’re smelling is weed can be a little difficult if you aren’t attuned to the scent. Various strains of marijuana can smell different from each other, making it even more complicated.
This article will cover what marijuana smells like in different stages of its use and consumption, as well as some differences between strains.
The strongest factor in the way marijuana smells is the age of the cannabis plant when it’s harvested. Cannabis that’s harvested earlier in its life cycles has a milder, less skunky scent.
It’s also less powerful when you smoke it. Cannabis that grows older before it’s picked and dried will have a stronger odor.
Organic compounds called terpenes are found in all plants, including cannabis. Myrcene (mango), pinene (pine), and limonene (lemon) are terpenes found in some strains of cannabis.
Terpenes change the scent of marijuana. For example, cannabis strains with pinene will smell more like pine.
Marijuana plants smell similar during the growing process and when they’re harvested and dried. They give off a slightly weedy, piney “skunk” scent that gets stronger as the plant grows older.
When cannabis flowers and blooms, the scent becomes powerful.
Indica vs. sativa
For decades, botanists and marijuana connoisseurs claimed that indica and sativa are different species with distinctly different effects on the body. Indica strain smells more acrid, while sativa smells more spicy or sweet.
But it would appear, at least to some experts, that there’s no way to smell the difference between indica and sativa definitively. Part of the reason is that there’s a lot of crossbreeding between these two particular strains.
However, one small study did find that participants who had purchased weed within the prior several months were able to smell the difference between several different strains of marijuana.
Marijuana consumers describe the scent of the plant as earthy, herbal, and woody. Sometimes the plant scent carries notes of lemon, apple, diesel, or plum.
Dried marijuana smells a lot stronger than some other dried plants.
When you’re smoking marijuana, the natural scent of the cannabis scent is amplified by the smoke it creates. Fire, smoke itself, ash, and the smell of rolling paper add additional layers to the scent.
When a person is smoking cannabis, notes of lemongrass, pine, fire, and wood may stand out. The distinct “skunk” smell of marijuana is often reported.
Learn about what gives marijuana its distinctly "skunky," strong odor, and how marijuana smells in plant form, when it's smoked, and more.