Search for the best CBD drops? This article covers what CBD drops are and how they compare to other CBD brands. We also cover our five favorite CBD drops on the market in 2021 and explain the best ways shoppers can find the best quality CBD drops themselves.
Cannabidiol (CBD) is among many active compounds that occur naturally in the Cannabis sativa (C. sativa) plant. Unlike its famous and psychoactive sister compound, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), it is nonintoxicating, although it still offers many potential benefits.
CBD comes in many forms, from topical creams and balms to capsules, vapes, and CBD gummies, but CBD drops made from oils and tinctures are growing in popularity.
CBD is just one of dozens of cannabinoids chemical compounds found in the hemp plant. Those compounds, led by CBD, have become a popular alternative approach to treating various medical conditions, including chronic pain, epilepsy and other seizures, and anxiety.
But although CBD products have been dominating both the popular conversation and retail shelves, they’re not all the same. In fact, some are far more effective than others.
The 5 Best CBD Drops you can buy are:
FOCL CBD Drops
Spruce CBD Drops
Penguin CBD Drops
Joy Organics CBD Drops
Editors Choice for Best Overall: FOCL CBD Drops
FOCL CBD drops are the perfect way to start with CBD drops. With a nice 10 mg of CBD per dropper, this 300-mg bottle will last you a while.
We love the light, fun flavors, and there‚ no grassy, plant-y aftertaste at all here. The graduated dropper makes it easy to measure out a dose and will give you confidence, even if you’re new to CBD. FOCL uses non-GMO, organically grown hemp from their own farm in New Mexico, too, so you know just what you’re getting each and every time from this brand.
And what do other fans say? Read hundreds of real customer reviews on the product page to see. And check out the test results which are also available right there on the product page.
Highest Potency: Spruce CBD Drops
We love the an extra-strength version of Spruce CBD drops when we really want a high potency option. Spruce is vegan, organic, and gluten-free. It tastes great even though it delivers more CBD, with organic hemp seed oil as a carrier, and no artificial flavors, sweeteners, or preservatives.
But when it comes to results and just packing more into every drop of product, it doesn’t get much better than these CBD drops. Spruce offers cannabinoids, antioxidants, terpenes, flavonoids, and other natural plant components in higher concentrations than most competitors, and that‚ offering not just better symptom management, but a better experience overall. Spruce also packs an impressive 80 milligrams of CBD per one milliliter serving.
And one more thing: Spruce delivers a money back guarantee if you’re not satisfied.
Best Natural Flavor: Penguin Natural CBD Drops
This unflavored CBD drop option by Penguin CBD is among the highest quality we’ve seen. The CBD drops are derived from Oregon-grown hemp, and themselves use a broad-spectrum CBD that truly keeps it all except the THC.
These are CBD drops that don’t have a ton of flavors masking the hemp taste, and they actually still taste good. The Penguin take on thing is apparently working, as is their sustainably and organically-grown hemp.
The flavors like Mint, Citrus, Strawberry, and Cookies and Cream are also awesome, don’t get us wrong! But here we are singling out the Natural option because as natural or unflavored versions go, this one is the best.
Best Flavors: Joy Organics CBD Drops
These full spectrum CBD drops from Joy Organics are our favorite to taste. They are USDA organic and these are the most delicious flavors we’ve run across for this kind of product.
Try the tranquil mint, summer lemon, orange bliss, and tropical sunrise, but the fresh lime is definitely our favorite. Four concentrations of the drops are available for both beginners and more experienced CBD users: 15, 30, 45, and 75 milligrams of CBD per 1 milliliter servings.
Joy Organics is known for transparency, describing its entire growing and manufacturing process on its website. Their US Department of Agriculture (USDA) certified organic hemp is grown in the United States.
Joy Organics offers discounts for teachers, veterans, medical personnel, first responders, and low-income households. They also offer free shipping that‚ carbon-neutral on all orders.
Most Choices: FabCBD
FabCBD Drops are fun and unique. Available in 300mg, 600mg, 1200mg, 2400mg formulations, you also get to choose from 5 flavors that are tasty and give you some variety: berry, mint, citrus, vanilla, and natural.
FabCBD uses CO2 extraction on 100% organic, certified non-GMO, industrial hemp grown sourced in Colorado to create its CBD drops. They feature naturally occurring terpenes and various other cannabinoids and are simple to add to your daily wellness routine.
What Is CBD?
Although more research around CBD is needed, what we know so far is promising. To name a few, CBD shows potential benefits for conditions, like pain, anxiety, and epilepsy. It‚ important to keep in mind that there‚ still a lot about CBD that we don’t know, and more research is needed before we can say for certain what CBD‚ effects are.
What Is a Tincture?
Although you may hear people using CBD tincture and CBD oil interchangeably, these are two different products with similar uses and appearances. Both CBD oil and CBD tincture are thick liquids that have CBD suspended in them. Both kinds will usually be marketed for sublingual consumption in tinted glass bottles with graduated droppers.
But CBD oils and CBD tinctures carry and deliver their cannabinoid cargo in different liquids. CBD oil suspends CBD in a carrier oil, such as coconut oil, olive oil, MCT oil, or hempseed oil.
Manufacturers create CBD tinctures by soaking cannabis in high-proof alcohol to extract the cannabinoids and then suspend or dilute the glycerin- or alcohol-based solution in a carrier oil. So although both have CBD suspended in some kind of carrier oil, the tincture will also have some of the extraction solution present.
Either CBD tincture or CBD oil can be used for CBD drops.
CBD Oil vs Hempseed Oil
CBD oil and hempseed oil, sometimes called hemp oil, are not the same. In fact, hempseed oil does not contain any CBD. That‚ because CBD oil is made from the bud, flower, leaves, and stems of the cannabis plant, while hempseed oil is extracted from hemp seeds. The seeds themselves do not produce the cannabinoids.
Hempseed oil can be taken orally as a food additive or supplement, and hemp extract can be used topically for skin health.
Is CBD Oil Right For Me?
CBD is well tolerated overall and safe to use, although it is possible to experience negative reactions, such as digestive issues and fatigue. Some research indicates that because high fat meals can increase concentrations of CBD in the blood, this can increase the risk of side effects from CBD, so consuming CBD with high fat meals may produce more side effects.
Anyone who is breastfeeding, pregnant, has pre existing medical conditions, or already takes prescription or OTC medications or supplements should talk with your doctor before taking CBD. CBD may interact with medications , including meds that interact with grapefruit.
Always read the ingredient list of any new product, especially if you have any allergies. Avoid taking CBD products if drug testing is a serious worry, since it‚ still possible for full-spectrum CBD oil products to contain trace amounts of THC, and therefore to show up on a drug test.
In most parts of the US CBD is legal, but only for those at least 18 years old. It may not be legal everywhere. Before buying CBD, check your local laws, especially when buying online and needing shipment to your area.
What Do CBD Drops Do?
Experts are not yet certain of all of the benefits of CBD use. Results vary among people and can be slow and subtle. To track your progress, keep notes in a journal or an app to see the effects over time.
Benefits of CBD Drops
Research indicates that CBD oil tinctures may be able to help treat sleep issues, relieve symptoms of stress, and offer some pain relief. According to the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health , cannabinoid-based drugs may help treat chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting, epilepsy, chronic pain, loss of appetite and weight loss due to HIV or AIDS, anxiety, multiple sclerosis (MS), and sleeping problems, among other issues.
CBD for Sleep and Anxiety
A 2019 retrospective case study on CBD and sleep and anxiety found that 25 milligrams of CBD oil daily for one month in capsule form reduced anxiety and improved sleep for almost 80% of participants.
Other research from 2019 found that CBD may help treat symptoms of social anxiety disorder . In that study, participants saw significantly decreased social anxiety scores after taking 300 milligrams of CBD oil daily for four weeks.
An additional literature review that analyzed the results of 8 CBD and anxiety studies found that daily doses of CBD between 6 milligrams and 400 milligrams were an effective alternative treatment for anxiety.
CBD for Pain
Research shows that the body‚ CB2 receptor, found mostly in nervous system cells and tissues, has an anti-inflammatory property that aids in showing down chronic inflammation in the body and can help manage pain.
A 2018 study on CBD and multiple sclerosis found that CBD reduced spasticity, fatigue, and pain in some patients. A previous research review also found that CBD might be effective in treating neuropathic pain in particular, among other forms of chronic pain. However, as always, consult a healthcare provider before you start taking CBD drops for pain.
How Does CBD Work in the Body?
The endocannabinoid system (ECS) in the body regulates various other bodily systems by controlling how other compounds are released. By binding to CB1 receptors, natural cannabinoids in the body assist with this regulation , similar to the way that plant-based cannabinoids such as CBD and THC work. This is why many people use CBD to help manage sleep, mood, and pain.
CBD works in the ECS indirectly by inhibiting anandamide inactivation. Anandamide is a neurotransmitter which prompts the release of serotonin, the hormone that can improve the mood. For this reason, many people use full-spectrum hemp and broad-spectrum CBD oil products to reduce stress and anxiety.
Full-spectrum CBD includes all of the plant‚ other natural cannabinoids, including trace amounts of THC, and other important components of the plant such as vitamins and smaller organic molecules called terpenes. Research indicates that combining THC, CBD, and terpenes produces more health benefits than just using isolated plant compounds.
In one study from 2018 , researchers found that the combined anti-tumor effects of CBD, THC, and other cannabinoids and terpenes were superior to those of pure THC on breast cancer cell cultures. Similarly, a 2018 meta-analysis compared CBD-rich extracts with extracts that contained only CBD and found that using CBD-rich extracts led to fewer side effects and better therapeutic effects.
How to Choose the Best CBD Drops
Although CBD products may seem to be everywhere at this point, remember: they’re not all the same. Shop carefully, because the FDA hasn‚t approved any over-the-counter CBD products.
Only buy from transparent, reputable brands with informative websites, not through online marketplaces. And stay away from Amazon altogether, at least until they officially allow CBD product sales and overhaul the platform. For now, CBD products on Amazon are likely fake due to its regulations.
It‚ important to confirm whether there are any warning letters from the FDA or pending lawsuits against the brand you are considering. And check the ingredients of the product carefully for beneficial added ingredients and allergens.
It‚ critical to confirm quality control and testing. The best CBD products come with comprehensive, up-to-date certificates of analysis (COAs) from reputable, third-party lab testing. The COA will reveal CBD and THC levels and lab results that show whether the product has been tested for contaminants such as pesticides, mold, and heavy metals.
Type of CBD
There are three types of CBD extracts available:
CBD isolate is just pure CBD isolated from the industrial hemp plant, with no other cannabinoids.
Broad-spectrum CBD contains all of the various cannabinoids found naturally in the cannabis plant, such as CBC, CBD, CBG, and CBN, but all traces of THC are removed.
Full-spectrum products retain the whole plant cannabinoid and terpene profile, including all cannabinoids found naturally in the cannabis plant, along with THC.
As we indicated above, research has found that the entourage effect is produced when CBD and THC are used together, so these cannabinoids may be more effective when they are not used in isolation.
The best full-spectrum CBD oil brands will typically also retain other plant nutrients such as proteins, chlorophyll, fatty acids, flavonoids, fiber, and terpenes. This natural combination allows full-spectrum formulas to achieve stronger potencies. Both broad-spectrum and CBD isolate products are THC-free, and CBD isolate also excludes all secondary cannabinoids, unlike broad-spectrum CBD products.
Organic, US-grown cannabis is ideal, because it is always subject to stricter safety and purity standards and agricultural regulations that control the planting, harvesting, and manufacturing processes. Organic and natural farming processes create ingredients that are less likely to include chemicals such as pesticides.
Extraction method impacts the final product in terms of how likely residue is to be present. It also affects the environment. CO2 extraction is ideal because it is environmentally friendly and produces a pure and potent CBD product. Alcohol extraction is also a good method.
To compare the prices of CBD drops, find the cost per milligram of CBD by dividing the cost of the product by the total amount of CBD in each bottle.
Sometimes manufacturers add other ingredients to CBD drops for consistency, taste, and added health benefits. Look for natural essential oils like peppermint or lemon if you’re hoping for more flavor.
Some makers even use natural flavors and other organic ingredients to create more complex tastes like mint chocolate or mixed berries. Or for extra punch for your health, look for added vitamins or botanicals with known health benefits.
Lab Testing and Certifications
High-quality CBD products go through third-party lab testing before ever seeing the public, and sellers you can trust post those results so they are on the packaging and easily accessible online. We recommend brands that earn one or more of these certifications:
National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) certification
Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) certification
The FDA does not protect the public by guaranteeing the effectiveness, safety, or quality of OTC CBD products at this time. However, they can take action to protect the public health when CBD companies make unfounded health claims, so look for letters against any company you’re considering to ensure they are pushing only quality products.
How to Take CBD Drops
To achieve the right consistency and an even dose, shake the bottle before each use. Place the CBD drops under your tongue using the graduated dropper. Hold the drops there for at least 30 seconds for maximum absorption before swallowing.
Follow the manufacturer‚ recommended dose or your doctor‚ instructions. Start with a low dose. You can increase your frequency and/or dose over time until you achieve your desired results. Before you make any changes in dosage, be sure to talk with your doctor.
CBD serving sizes and which dose is right vary significantly depending on individual factors such as intended use, metabolism, body weight, and body chemistry.
Take doses at least 4 to 6 hours apart. You can take CBD any time, but take it before bed to improve sleep.
CBD usually produces immediate effects within 30 to 90 minutes, but it may take several weeks to achieve long-term results. It‚ also possible to use CBD drops in food, but this can change speed and manner of absorption.
Store CBD drops in a cool, dry place out of direct sunlight and heat. Close the cap tightly after each use. Do not contaminate the dropper with your mouth. It is not necessary to refrigerate CBD drops, but it can help prolong shelf life.
CBD is also available in capsules or gummies, or infused into skin care products, such as lotions and salves. Depending on the form your CBD products come in, the dosing and other instructions will vary.
Some people can experience side effects from CBD , which are typically mild. These usually result from doses that are too high and may include diarrhea, dry mouth, fatigue, irritability, nausea, and reduced appetite. However, the World Health Organization (WHO) reports that CBD is largely considered safe.
Be aware that CBD can also interact negatively with some prescription medications , and at high doses this may cause liver damage. If you take other medications, even over the counter, talk to your doctor first before adding CBD to your routine.
the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not currently evaluate CBD products, with the exception of the seizure medication Epidiolex. Always ask for healthcare advice and do research to determine that CBD drops are a safe choice for you before adding them to your routine.
Callout: Is CBD Legal?
CBD products that have less than 0.3% THC and are derived from hemp are federally legal but remain illegal under the laws of some states . CBD products derived from marijuana may be legal in some states, but are illegal federally. Especially before you travel, check local legislation, and keep in mind that nonprescription CBD products may be inaccurately labeled due to lack of oversight from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
Frequently Asked Questions:
Question 1: What is the best time of day to take CBD drops?
The best time is whenever CBD best fits into your routine. Many people prefer taking CBD drops in the evening or before bed to help with sleep. Others prefer using smaller doses of CBD drops in the morning, as a boost for focusing.
Question 2: How do you take CBD?
There are so many ways to take CBD‚Äîincluding gummies, capsules, and creams‚Äîbut it’s most often sold as CBD oils and CBD tinctures, which forms the basis for CBD drops. The best CBD drops are easy to measure, because they come with a graduated dropper.
Question 3: Who should not take CBD?
According to the FDA , pregnant and breastfeeding individuals should not take any CBD products. Animal tests indicate that some compounds and chemicals may transfer to a baby through breast milk.
CBD drops are a great addition to most wellness routines, and we love these five brands! We hope this has been an informative view into the best CBD drops to use in 2021. The convenience of CBD drops makes them a wonderful place to start; which kind is your favorite?