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CBD Oil vs. Hemp Seed Oil

Written By Ellese Symons Jul 13th 2022
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The revival of domestic hemp cultivation has increased the demand for sustainable, eco-friendly hemp-sourced products. Although consumers are clearly embracing the opportunity to purchase hemp-sourced paper, hypoallergenic fabrics, and biodegradable plastics, it’s the health and wellness potential of the plant oils and extracts that have people talking.

Now that hemp products are sold just about everywhere, anyone interested in purchasing hemp-derived CBD needs to be cautious. CBD oil and hemp oil tend to be used interchangeably throughout our industry, but not all hemp oil contains CBD. As you’re shopping for hemp-derived tinctures, gummies, capsules, and topicals, it’s important to understand the similarities and differences between CBD oil and hemp seed oil.

Why Is There So Much Confusion About Hemp-Derived Oils?

When the definitions of hemp oil and CBD oil are used correctly, they mean the same thing. The problem seems to be the number of companies, whether intentional or not, systemically blurring the distinctions between hemp oil and hemp seed oil. With the way things stand, far too many people looking for hemp-derived CBD are falling victim to questionable marketing practices and blatant misrepresentation. How, you ask?

Many products made with hemp seed oil look much like hemp-derived products made by reputable CBD brands. The product descriptions suggest similar benefits, and manufacturers are specifying how many milligrams (mg) of “hemp oil” are in their products. Many, if not most, people purchasing these products believe they’re ordering hemp-derived CBD. In reality, they’re paying top dollar for inexpensive hemp seed oil.1

What Is Hemp Seed Oil? Is it Beneficial?

Hemp seed oil is cold-pressed from the protein-rich seeds of the plant, a process that helps preserve its nutritional value. Unrefined, cold-pressed hemp seed oil has a richly pigmented green color and a nutty flavor. Although hemp seeds are not a source of CBD, they are a significant source of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, protein, vitamin E. calcium, magnesium, and iron. However, once hemp seed oil is refined, it loses most of its nutritional value.

When applied topically, hemp seed oil can help balance oil production without clogging pores. The essential fatty acids in the oil can be helpful for people living with chronic skin conditions, and cold-pressed hemp seed oil is a terrific source of gamma-linolenic acid (GLA), a substance believed to encourage cellular regeneration while calming inflammation. Hemp seed oil can also be used to make ethanol and biofuels, and several sources suggest benefits for cardiovascular health.2

What Is CBD Oil? Is It Beneficial?

CBD is the most abundant of the many non-intoxicating cannabinoids found in the stalks, stems, and flowers of industrial hemp plants. Once crops are harvested, the oil is separated from the unwanted plant components utilizing a food-safe extraction method, most often CO2 or ethanol. After the oil is extracted and distilled, the plant extracts are used to make an impressive number of products, including CBD oil tinctures, topicals, capsules, and CBD gummies.

The health and wellness potential of CBD is explained by the way cannabinoids interact with the largest regulatory system in the body, the endocannabinoid system (ECS). Although most of the research supporting the use of CBD is based on lab reports, user testimonials, and a handful of clinical trials, preliminary investigations suggest considerable analgesic, anti-inflammatory, antispasmodic, and neuroprotective potential.3

How Will I Know Which Hemp Oil a Company Is Using?

Once you realize there are two types of hemp oil, it’s much easier to protect yourself from the possibility of purchasing cleverly marketed, over-priced hemp seed oil. That’s important. If you were to start using a tincture made with hemp seed oil while assuming your products contained CBD, you might naturally assume hemp-derived CBD isn’t worth the investment, that it doesn’t work for you. It happens a lot more often than you might expect.

But now that you know, the odds on in your favor. To protect yourself from brands hoping to capitalize on misinformation, misconception, or overall confusion about hemp-derived products, consider applying what you’ve learned to the following suggestions.

Check Out the List of Ingredients

Even the most experienced CBD user can be swayed by clever marketing tactics. That’s why it’s important to view product descriptions with a healthy dose of skepticism. Whenever you see “hemp oil” or “hemp supplement” printed on a label, take a look at the list of ingredients. If the oil listed is cold-pressed, it’s probably hemp seed oil, specifically cannabis sativa seed oil.

CBD oil, the oil from the stalks, stems, and flowers of the plant, is extracted. There are several ways a reputable company might list CBD oil in the ingredients, but the origins should be clear. Depending on the brand, you might see CBD oil referred to as phytocannabinoids rich (PCR) oil, cannabidiol, full spectrum extracts, aerial plant parts, or similar terms.

Confirm with a Certificate of Analysis

Hemp crops are well-known for their ability to pull heavy metals, pesticides, and other potential toxins from the soil and groundwater as they grow. That’s one of the reasons reputable CBD manufacturers rely on third-party testing from an independent lab to confirm the purity and potency of the products they offer. The certificate of analysis will also confirm the CBD content of the product you select, a cannabinoid profile you won’t find with hemp seed oil products.

Since any company could claim their products are third-party tested, consider sticking with brands that allow consumer access to the certificate of analysis provided by the lab. You can use this report to confirm the amount of CBD in your product and verify that any THC content falls within acceptable parameters.

Stick with Reputable CBD Brands

Mistakenly purchasing hemp seed oil when you want hemp-derived CBD isn’t the only way to set yourself up for a potentially disappointing experience. The quality of the cannabinoid-rich hemp extracts used to make your hemp-derived CBD products can also have a significant impact on your overall results. That’s why it’s essential to stick with reputable, verifiable brands.

You can tell a lot about a company by what people are saying about their products. Not only can product reviews and testimonials tell you a lot about overall quality, you’ll also gain a fair amount of insight into the way a company prioritizes customer service and consumer satisfaction. As you’re browsing customer comments, consider checking out the terms of any return policies or satisfaction guarantees.

Are You Looking for High-Quality Hemp-Derive CBD Oil?

There are many compelling reasons to consider investing in products made with hemp seed oil. Current studies suggest considerable anti-inflammatory potential and possible benefits for cardiovascular health. Skincare products made with cold-pressed hemp seed oil have a reputation for balancing oil production while boosting hydration. But hemp seed oil does not contain CBD.

When you want high-quality hemp-derived CBD products, visit CBDistillery® to view our selection of CBD oil tinctures, topical, softgels, gummies, or our new Synergy Collection. All CBDistillery® hemp-derived CBD, CBG, and CBN products are sourced from non-GMO, naturally cultivated crops. You can verify our commitment to quality and consumer satisfaction by viewing the third-party test results on our product pages or scanning the QR code on our labels.


1. Healthline. D Murray. (2020 April 03) CBD Oil vs. Hempseed Oil: How to Know What You’re Paying For.

2. Medical News Today. J Caporuscio. (2020 June 08) What Is the Difference Between Hemp Seed Oil and CBD Oil?

3. Physiology. Lingresti et al. (2016 September 14) From Phytocannabinoids to Cannabinoid Receptors and Endocannabinoids: Pleiotropic Physiological and Pathological Roles Through Complex Pharmacology.