how to choose cbd oil

7 Tips to Learn How to Choose a CBD Oil

How to Choose a CBD Oil 

Choosing the right cannabidiol (CBD) oil is a very personal decision. Everyone is different, and there are many CBD oil options to choose from. To make things simple, we boiled it down to these 7 tips to help you choose the highest quality best CBD oil. 

The potential health benefits associated with cannabis plants helped make hemp derived CBD oil an enormous new industry. The Farm Bill of 2018 changed hemp cannabis laws to allow CBD oil to be sold throughout the US across state lines. As a result, there are many new companies forming across the country.

However, this new legal cannabis industry has no federal regulations from the Food and Drug Administration. Therefore, choosing a safe and reliable CBD oil brand can be difficult. There are many factors to consider when looking for hemp seed oil CBD products. This post will teach you how to choose CBD oil. 

CBD oil can have many different positive effects, according to anecdotal reports. Most people take a CBD oil or a CBD tincture under the tongue for a full body effect; others choose CBD capsules. Still others prefer CBD topicals for their potential benefits to muscles and joints or to treat skin conditions. Side effects associated with CBD use are mild, if any side effects are experienced at all, making it a popular new supplement option for many different people.

Whichever form of CBD oil products you use (CBD oil, CBD gummies with THC, or CBD pills), it is important to choose a reputable and trustworthy CBD oil manufacturer to purchase from. The questions below are a great guide to give you a framework for understanding the choices that CBD manufacturers make before arriving at a finished product.

By understanding these steps, you can make better choices about which CBD oil brand you want to take.

Tip 1 Research Where the Hemp Comes From

According to recent news reports, as much as 70% of CBD products sold in American retail stores and online are made from hemp sourced from farms in China. China has very low standards for environmental protection and agricultural pollution. The two regions in China that produce hemp also have recent histories of heavy metal pollution.

Hemp is a bio-accumulator. That means it draws out toxins from the soil and the surrounding environment. Some countries use hemp to suck all of the pesticides and toxins from the ground so they can plant food crops. If CBD products are made with hemp grown in these conditions, then contamination with heavy metals could be a real potential health risk. 

Consumers should look for a CBD oil brand that is grown close to home for the freshest and safest hemp oil. Thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill, farmers can grow hemp plants anywhere in the US. The three best hemp-growing states in America are Colorado, Oregon, and Kentucky.

Of those three states, Kentucky has historically been the prime locale to grow the best hemp in America. Kentucky farmers have been growing industrial hemp since 1775. The cannabis plant loves Kentucky because its rich agricultural base lies along the 37th parallel. At this latitude, the light cycles are ideal for cultivating high quality hemp because this is the same line of latitude as the Hindu Kush, where indica cannabis strains originated.

Hemp grown in western states can drain natural resources and contribute to drought crises. But with its climate and abundant limestone-filtered water supply, Kentucky-grown hemp can be cultivated in an eco-friendly and sustainable way. Choose products made from Kentucky grown hemp for the best CBD oils and hemp products.

Tip 2 Learn About Full Spectrum CBD or THC-free

Not all CBD oils are created equal. There are different levels of purity when it comes to CBD oil products. Full spectrum CBD oil has the complete cannabinoid profile of the cannabis plant present, and a CBD purity level between 50% of a raw hemp extract to 75% of a full spectrum distillate. After 75%, the full spectrum range starts to fade away. 

Broad spectrum CBD oil has a purity level between 80% and 95% with non-detectible levels of THC. This is sometimes called “THC-free.” CBD isolate is 99% pure CBD, the isolate product contains just the single CBD compound.

Which is the best level of purity to seek in a CBD product? Studies show that having all of other cannabinoids cannabinoids working together my cause them to have a greater effect on the endocannabinoid system, or ECS.

Each compound has a different effect on different receptors in the ECS. When these cannabinoids all work together, that is known as the “entourage effect.” Research confirms that full spectrum oil, with its complete range of cannabinoids, may do the most for the ECS and provide the best health results. Broad spectrum and CBD isolates reportedly do not perform as well.   

CBD products derived from legal hemp plants are far different from medical marijuana products. Legal CBD oil only contains trace amounts of less than 0.3 percent THC. This is not nearly enough to get you high. It is just enough to work with the CBD to achieve the greatest healing potential of the hemp plant. 

As long as you don’t have a drug test hanging over your head, we recommend that you choose full spectrum hemp CBD products. (But be advised: even though a CBD product may not contain THC, it may still test positive on a drug test!)

Tip 3 Find Out the CBD Extraction Method

Some companies use cheap methods of extraction that could be dangerous to your health. They may use toxic solvents like butane and propane, more commonly used in lighter fluid and cooking ranges, to extract CBD. The companies that consumers should seek out are those that use cleaner extraction methods.

One of the safest extraction processes involves using organic ethanol. It is considered to yield the highest amount of cannabinoids. Another extraction method involves using carbon dioxide (CO2) under high pressure to refine cannabis oil from the hemp plant. CO2 extraction requires more expensive equipment, but the CBD retains its purity throughout the process.

Our experience is that cannabis extract made from CO2 extraction process yields a product with a bitter taste, while the ethanol extraction allows for a smoother product because it’s a gentler method. We recommend that you choose CBD products extracted with organic ethanol.

Tip 4 No Third Party Lab Reports, No Purchase

Be aware: there are no federal regulations to assure that every CBD product is safe. Before purchasing CBD oil from any company you should be sure they have proof that a third-party lab tested their products, and that they provided all of the results.

Full lab reports should have a potency profile, proving that the product contains the legal amount of THC. It should also verify the potency by showing the actual amount of CBD in each bottle of CBD oil, and the amount of CBD is per serving. Showing how much CBD is actually in their products is important to a brand's trustworthiness. 

They should also test for harmful contaminants such as pesticides, heavy metals, and microbials. You should only choose CBD products that have a third party conduct safety tests for contaminants. Why third party? To ensure that the test results will be non biased, and that they have not been tampered with or altered by the CBD manufacturer.

Tip 5 QR Codes on CBD Packaging

A reliable CBD company will allow easy access to the third party laboratory results of all of their products. Otherwise, it could be fake CBD.

Many companies will have links on their websites leading to the different reports and certifications. Top tier brands will have a scannable QR code on each one of their products that lead their consumers straight to their lab results, sometimes called certificate of analysis COA. A QR barcode on the product label demonstrates that the CBD brand has nothing to hide.

Tip 6 Only Shop for Organic CBD Oil

When standing in the aisle of the health food store, scanning QR codes to read reports beforehand may not always be plausible. Due to the lack of FDA regulation, there are no requirements for CBD manufacturers to adhere to any standard during the process.

The only certification a CBD oil can acquire from the federal government to prove that every step of the manufacturing process is clean and safe for human consumption, is the USDA organic seal. Organic products are grown with non GMO seeds and cultivated with organic practices without the use of chemical pesticides and fertilizers.  

While you are shopping, find the USDA organic seal on the CBD oil label. That’s the best guarantee that you are looking at a high quality CBD oil product from a company that is going above and beyond for their customers.

Tip 7 Try Cornbread Hemp

Cornbread Hemp makes the process of buying CBD oils easier by constantly striving to produce the best in high quality products made from hemp oil. We do this by choosing the best option in every step of the CBD oil making process, from seed to shelf.

We work with farmers in Kentucky to cultivate the best strains of organically grown hemp for CBD wellness needs. Some companies use the whole plant in their hemp-derived CBD products. This may sound good, but actually the stems and leaves of the hemp plant don't contain a lot of CBD. Including them in the source material for hemp extract makes a grassy, bitter end product. We only use the flowers from the hemp plant for our extract material. This ensures full potency and great natural flavor.

Our organic CBD tinctures have been extracted from our organic hemp flower source using organic sugarcane ethanol and then blended with an organic coconut carrier oil. (MCT coconut oil to be precise, for its bioavailability benefits.) This allows us to carry the USDA organic seal. We make our products in small batches for optimum quality control. 

Every Cornbread Hemp product has a QR code on all packaging to allow easy access to each product’s third-party lab results that test for safety in addition to potency. We only use high quality full spectrum hemp extract for our CBD products to provide maximum potential relief.

The CBD oil industry is vast and untamed, and it can be difficult to choose a safe and reliable CBD oil product. When choosing the best quality CBD oil for you from a company you can trust, choose the full spectrum health benefits of Cornbread Hemp’s USDA certified organic CBD oil.

About the Author
Jim Higdon, Co-Founder

Jim is a native of Lebanon, Kentucky. He holds degrees from Centre College, Brown University, and Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism. Jim published Cornbread Mafia in 2012 before co-founding Cornbread Hemp. Full author bio here.


The passage of the 2018 Farm Bill made it legal for farmers to grow industrial hemp with no more than 0.3 percent THC nationwide. This also opened the door for companies to manufacture and sell hemp-based products, such as full spectrum CBD tinctures, CBD oil, and more.

The cannabis plant loves Kentucky because its rich agricultural base lies along the 37th parallel. At this latitude, the light cycles are ideal for cultivating high quality hemp because this is the same line of latitude as the Hindu Kush, where indica cannabis strains originated.

Be aware: there are no federal regulations to assure that every CBD product is safe. Before purchasing CBD oil from any company you should be sure they have proof that a third-party lab tested their products, and that they provided all of the results.