When it comes to CBD products, there is a wide variety to choose from. And most cases, that variety is welcome, but due to the age of the industry and the lack of regulations behind it, that variety can be overwhelming and complicate our purchase decisions. Many people want to know the difference between CBD oil and CBD capsules.

The difference between CBD oil and CBD capsules really depends on how you are using the term CBD oil. CBD oil is used as the base to create a variety of products such as topicals, tinctures, and capsules. The different products each have unique properties that make them attractive to use. The simplify it, CBD capsules are a way to consume CBD oil.

However, some people use the term CBD oil specifically to refer to tinctures made with CBD oil because the tinctures are much like oil in terms of texture.


CBD oil is the combination of cannabinol and a carrier oil that has been combined together after the CBD has been extracted from the hip plant. From there, it can be turned into a number of products such as topicals, capsules, and tinctures. CBD tinctures are an oil-like format of CBD that you take orally often sublingually. They are in a liquid dropper format and typically contain the full spectrum of cannabinoids along with terpenes and carrier oils.

You’ll find CBD oil for sale online and in many convenience stores. It’s important to remember that quality is crucial to choosing the right CBD oil product. What you’ll find in most convenient stores isn’t the level of quality that you need to get the results you’re looking for.

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CBD Capsules

CBD capsules are soft gel-like pills that contain a certain amount of CBD oil. They are consumed orally the same way you take pills and other supplements. Oftentimes, the use of the word capsule is interchangeable with pill, tab, and soft gel.

Which is Better?

CBD oil is most commonly available in tincture form. Though they are referred to as tinctures, they generally do not contain alcohol.

CBD Oil Tinctures

Generally, you’ll find CBD oil tinctures in a 10 milliliter, 30 ml, or 60 mL bottle and a combination of both the carrier oil and cannabinoids mainly CBD. The concentration of cannabinoids in the entire bottle is usually found on the front labeled as a numerical value in milligrams.

The most common carrier oils are MCT coconut oil, cold-pressed hemp seed oil, extra virgin olive oil, frankincense oil, black cumin seed oil, and grape seed oil. There are a variety of benefits of varying the carrier oils that we suggest you research further. The carrier oils can add a unique flavor to the oil tinctures.

Since the CBD oil is in liquid form, your taste buds will definitely perk up when trying them. The cannabinoid-rich hemp extract, including CBD, is known for an earthy or grassy flavor that not everyone finds pleasant. To counteract the flavor, sometimes manufacturers add additional flavors such as peppermint, orange, wintergreen, or cinnamon.

One of the benefits of using a CBD oil tincture in liquid form is that you can create your own serving size and determine how much CBD oil is right for you. This is helpful when your first trying CBD oil because everyone’s experience is different. Tinctures are a wonderful way to adjust the serving size so you can determine the right concentration for you.

It is worth mentioning however not all CBD oil tinctures have droppers with a graduated cylinder so the volume of the dropper is not etched into the side of it and you don’t know the exact volume and concentration of what’s in the dropper.

For instance, if you have a 250 mg 1 oz or 30 ml bottle, you’ll get about 8 mg of CBD per milliliter. Depending on the dropper, since some droppers only fill 3/4 of the way, you’ll get .75 Mel so you’re serving size is only 6 mg instead of 8 mg. That’s important to consider when trying to understand how much you are actually taking.

In terms of bioavailability, the rumor is that teachers are better than soft gels because the tinctures are ingested under the tongue and therefore into your bloodstream more quickly. In general, the carrier oil helps you are gut absorb CBD oil and other cannabinoids which is beneficial because 90% of your serotonin receptors are found in your gut and CBD acts on serotonin receptors.

CBD Capsules

CBD oil capsules are second to CBD oil tinctures as the most popular form of ingesting CBD oil. Using this approach gives you an easy-to-use option with a consistent serving size but there are some downfalls.

Generally, you’ll find that CBD oil capsules come in a bottle with 30 or 60. The concentration within the soft gel depends on the manufacturer, but the most common options are either 10 mg or 15 mg per capsule ranging from 300 to 600 mg or 450 to 900 mg in the entire bottle.

The concentration also depends on the number of capsules in the bottle. There are some instances where the CBD oil capsules contain 5 mg or more per serving than the standard 15 mg per serving but these cases are rare.

When looking for a CBD capsule make sure you understand the total number of CBD capsules in the bottle and divide that by the total concentration to determine the concentration of oil in each capsule.

As with tinctures, the capsules are often blended with coconut oil, hemp seed oil, or extra virgin olive oil depending on the manufacturer. If you don’t want to taste the flavor of the CBD oil and its carriers, the capsules are differently for you. because all you have to do is swallow them whole, you don’t end up tasting the earthy flavor of the CBD.

An important thing to note is that CBD capsules are often made from gelatin that comes from livestock. If you are looking for a vegan, vegetarian, or kosher product, CBD capsules aren’t likely for you because gelatin is not always 100% animal product free.

In terms of bioavailability, it is likely that capsules are less bioavailable than tinctures, however, if you take the capsule with a high-fat meal then absorption can significantly be increased by three to five times, though more research is needed to confirm this.

What’s better for you really depends on your personal preference. Tinctures are a bit more difficult to travel with and dose. Capsules are also more discrete than tinctures, but may not provide results as quickly.

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