The words CBD (also commonly called hemp extract) and hemp oil (also called hemp seed oil) are often used interchangeably, including by retailers and manufacturers, even though they describe completely different products. This article explains the similarities and differences, and how to choose the product that’s best for you.


CBD stands for cannabidiol, a chemical compound found in the cannabis sativa plant. The two main strains of cannabis sativa are hemp and marijuana, both of which contain CBD and THC (which is psychoactive). Hemp contains a high percentage of CBD and only small amounts of THC. For this reason, CBD is usually extracted from the hemp plant. Because the THC content is so low, CBD is not psychoactive and will not get the user high.

Hemp oil is also derived from the Cannabis Sativa plant and is obtained by pressing hemp seeds (from industrial hemp). It’s high in fatty acids and other key nutrient compounds, but contains no CBD or THC.

What are the ingredients of the different products?

CBD is extracted from the flowers, stems, and leaves of the cannabis plant. CBD, or cannabidiol, is one of more than 100 active compounds found in the cannabis plant. CBD oil is made from CBD and a carrier oil, typically hemp oil, coconut oil, or olive oil.

Hemp oil is usually only made from hemp seeds. It is a seed oil that does not contain cannabinoids such as CBD, CBN or THC. However, hemp seeds, which are naturally rich in fatty acids and antioxidants, do not contain CBD. The oil works similarly to other carrier oils, such as sunflower oil and jojoba oil.

How is hemp oil and CBD oil extracted?

Although CBD oil and hemp oil both come from the cannabis plant, they are extracted from different parts of the plant.

CBD oil is extracted from the stalk and seeds of the mature hemp plant. CBD and other cannabinoids are separated from the plant through extraction processes. There are many different extraction methods to extract CBD from the hemp plant. The two most popular and effective methods are CO2 extraction and ultrasonic extraction. They are used because no toxic compounds are used in these processes. The hemp extract is then added to an oil.

In contrast, hemp oil is made exclusively from hemp seeds. The oil is made through a process called cold pressing, which helps preserve the raw, nutrient-dense component of hemp seeds. Each hemp seed contains up to 50% of its weight in oil. The seeds are hulled, chilled and then pressed to extract the oil. This is how unrefined, green-colored hemp oil is created.

What are the different products used for?

The various CBD products have many different uses, including promoting skin vitality as well as maintaining overall health and well-being. CBD is found in a variety of products, including:

Hemp oil has been widely used for many years and is a popular ingredient for:

What should I look out for when reading the labels?

CBD products are labeled with the following terms: CBD, CBD hemp, full spectrum hemp, phytocannabinoid-rich (PCR) hemp oil, PCR hemp extract, full spectrum hemp extract oil, and hemp extract.

Hemp oil products are often referred to as hemp oil, hemp seed oil, virgin hemp oil, and cannabis sativa seed oil.

Why are the differences important?

Hemp oil and CBD are both used to support health and well-being. Because of this, choosing the right product can be difficult. However, since hemp oil does not contain the same active cannabinoids found in CBD oil, it does not have the same effects. By using names like cannabis sativa seed oil, manufacturers add further confusion as the consumer may assume the product contains CBD when it doesn’t.

Although both products are derived from the same plant, they differ significantly. This is primarily because hemp seed oil and CBD contain completely different chemical compounds that come from different parts of the hemp plant. As such, they have different compositions and offer different benefits.

So what does this mean for consumers?

Both CBD and hemp oil can boost your health and well-being. However, the decisive factor is the origin (from which part of the plant the respective product comes) and the respective possible uses.

Hemp oil is extracted from hemp seeds; it is a nutrient-rich product that works well in cooking, as a dietary supplement, and in skin care products. In contrast, CBD oil is extracted from the flowers, stems, and leaves of the hemp plant and contains a range of cannabinoids, including CBD. It is mainly used to promote health and well-being.

To make sure you are buying the right product, you should read the product label carefully. If you are looking for a CBD oil, i.e. a product that contains the cannabinoid CBD, make sure that the CBD content of the oil is clearly indicated on the product.

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