“CBD is snake oil — it doesn’t work!”.
At least that’s what you might think you ordered from one of the many companies offering ineffective, frankly unethical CBD oils today.
While there are many companies in operation right now that aren’t playing by the rules, not all of them are snake oil.
Well-made CBD oils have been shown to offer a substantial improvement towards health conditions ranging from chronic pain and inflammation to epilepsy and neurological disorders. Studies have demonstrated CBD is a reliable sleep aid, anxiolytic (anti-anxiety), and antidepressant.
If you want to experience the benefits of CBD oil, you should always order from reputable brands with plenty of positive user feedback or reviews. Don’t waste your time (or money) on CBD oils that look good on paper but can’t back it up.
To get you started, here are three of the top-rated CBD oil brands on the market in 2020.
Best CBD Oils: 2020 Brand Reviews
1. Royal CBD Oil — Editor’s Pick
250 mg – 2500 mg
Natural, Berry, Mint, Vanilla
8.5 – 85 mg/mL
Over a dozen popular media outlets recommend Royal CBD oils — and that’s just what we’ve been able to find. A few examples include We Be High, Observer, CFAH, and more.
There are also a ton of customer reviews for this brand. We’ve skimmed through dozens of them and could only find 3 or 4 negative reviews — which mostly seemed to revolve around shipping. With the recent pandemic interfering with shipping schedules around the country, we can’t give them too much slack for this.
Royal CBD sells virtually all categories of CBD products — including oils, capsules, gummies, and topicals — each with multiple options to choose from.
In the company’s oil range, you can select between four different potencies (250, 500, 1000, and 2500 mg per bottle) and four flavors (vanilla, berry, peppermint, and natural).
Overall, this brand is our top pick in terms of value, potency, and customer service.
Available in a wide range of potencies (250 – 2500 mg)
Excellent value for the money
Made from organically-grown hemp
Legal in all 50 states — less than 0.3% THC
Third-party tested for quality and purity
Not available in-store (online brand only)
2. Gold Bee CBD Oil — Best Value
300 mg – 1200 mg
10 – 40 mg/mL
Gold Bee is a much newer CBD company that’s been stirring up a lot of discussions lately.
This company recently received an award for its innovative extraction process — which employs very small, tightly controlled extraction batches and several washes of supercritical CO2 extraction. By placing more attention on small extraction runs, the company can extract a much higher concentration of active terpenes from the hemp plant while minimizing loss.
When hemp plants are put through the extraction process, a percentage of the active ingredients is lost. Exposure to heat, oxygen, and chemicals can damage or break down the active ingredients. This loss can be as high as 50% of the total chemical profile.
Gold Bee has managed to maintain nearly 95% of the original phytochemical profile of the plant, which places these extracts about as close to a live resin extract as possible — while maintaining the price range of a standard full-spectrum product.
The extra terpene profile makes these oils especially potent. Many hemp-derived terpenes offer health benefits of their own, while some work to boost the effects of CBD directly.
Gold Bee CBD oils are priced competitively despite the above-average quality and high demand. The founder wants to ensure the company’s CBD oil remains affordable by anybody who needs it — which is clearly reflected in the price.
You can find recommendations for this brand on publications such as Weed News, LA Weekly, Venture Beat and more.
For the best value, go for the company’s 1200 mg CBD oil. This stuff is a real bargain.
Terpene-rich CBD oils provide stronger effects than comparable products
Available in a variety of potency and flavor options
Made from organically-grown hemp plants
Independently-tested for potency and purity
High-demand and low-processing volume means waiting lists aren’t uncommon — check back later
3. CBD Pure — Runner Up
500 mg – 1800 mg
50 – 180 mg/mL
The other brands listed above will only ship within the United States — which is why we’ve opted to include CBD Pure for readers living outside the US.
This brand was one of the first to enter the UK CBD industry, where it’s done an excellent job leading the way in terms of corporate transparency and cost.
CBD Pure sends a sample of every batch to a third-party lab for testing. An unbiased analysis is done to determine the cannabinoid ratios of the oil, check the terpene concentrations, and monitor the oil for potential contaminants. All of these tests are posted live on the company’s website.
When it comes to value, it’s best to look at the cost per mg of CBD included in the bottle. This makes it easier to compare CBD oils with different volumes, total CBD levels, and formulas.
CBD Pure oils all are well below the average cost of $0.15 per mg of CBD (0.12 GBP).
As with most CBD oils, the best value for the money is in the higher potency bottles — in this case, the 600 and 1000 mg CBD oils.
Very high-potency CBD oils
Small bottle size improves portability of these oils
Made from organically-grown hemp
Phytochemical-rich full-spectrum extract
5 Questions you Should Ask While Shopping for CBD Oil
Shopping for CBD oils can feel overwhelming. There are so many brands on the market today — all making the same claims. Additionally, each brand offers the same oil in 4, 5, or even 6 individual potencies. And this isn’t even taking into consideration the list of flavors available for each oil.
With so many choices to make, it’s no surprise that so many people feel stressed out while shopping for CBD products.
Here are 5 questions you should ask while shopping for CBD oil to help guide you to the best CBD oil for the job.
Question 1: Should I Use Full-Spectrum or CBD Isolate Oils?
There are two different types of CBD oils to choose from — full-spectrum and isolate.
Most experts recommend going for a full-spectrum oil. They maintain the natural cannabinoid and terpene profile found in the raw hemp plant. Many of these compounds have been shown to work together — producing stronger and more diverse effects overall.
CBD isolate oils are made by removing everything from the oil that isn’t CBD. All other cannabinoids, sterols, terpenes, and other hemp-derived compounds are removed. These products tend to be cheaper than full-spectrum oils, but you’ll need a slightly higher dose to make up for the lack of synergy in these products.
You can add terpene extracts to CBD isolate oils to boost the terpene content without affecting THC levels.
Isolate-based products are a great option for people who take regular drug tests. Full-spectrum products may contain trace amounts of the psychoactive molecule — THC — most drug tests look for.
Question 2: Are There Any Third-Party Tests Available
Independent lab testing is the only way to provide complete transparency on CBD products. It’s become the gold standard for proving the claims a CBD company makes for its products.
This form of testing needs to be done by independent analytics companies and can’t be done by the manufacturer itself. These companies have no affiliation with CBD companies, and if they discover anything abnormal in the test sample, they won’t hesitate to publish their findings in the lab reports.
Any reputable CBD brand will have these tests available for their oils — quantifiably proving they have nothing to hide.
Low-quality, scam, or unethical CBD brands will skip this step because they know the tests are likely to fail.
If there are no third-party tests available online, it’s wise to look for an alternative CBD company to buy from.
Question 3: Where Does the Hemp Used to Make the Oil Come From?
The source of the hemp used to make a CBD oil is more important than you might think.
Hemp is a bioaccumulator, which means it can pull chemicals from the soil or air around it and accumulate them in the leaves and flowers. This includes the “bad” stuff — like heavy metals, hydrocarbons, and pesticides.
For this reason, organic, American-grown hemp plants are the premium choice for CBD oils. Watch out for companies that don’t explicitly mention where they get their hemp. A lot of low-grade oils are made from cheap hemp grown in China or India where soil quality is notoriously poor, contamination rates are high, and government regulations on food and supplement crops are nonexistent.
Question 4: What’s the Cost per Milligram of CBD?
It’s easy to get fooled by the low cost of some CBD oils. You can find CBD oils for sale as low as $10 or $20 per bottle — but the actual value of these oils is notoriously poor.
The best metric for the value of a CBD oil is the “cost per milligram of CBD.” This metric allows you to compare the true value of CBD oils regardless of the potency and size of the bottle.
To find the cost per milligram, simply divide the total cost by the total CBD content.
You should end up with something around $0.07 to $0.30 per milligram.
Premium CBD oils usually go for $0.20 per milligram, while the average CBD oils cost closer to $0.15.
In general, the lowest cost per mg is found in the high-potency oils or larger bottle sizes. The initial cost is higher, but you’ll end up saving a ton of money over time because each bottle will provide weeks or months of CBD before you have to resupply.
Question 5: What Flavors Are Available?
The better the quality of the CBD oil — the stronger the taste. This is because the primary ingredients that affect the flavor of the oil are the terpenes. The more terpenes are in the oil, the more potent the flavor.
Not everybody likes the taste of CBD oil, so going with a high-end brand may make the oil less desirable to use.
There’s an effective way around this — opt for a flavored CBD oil instead.
Most CBD company’s offer flavored versions of their oils to mask the flavor. You can find flavors like peppermint, tropical fruits, vanilla, chocolate, honey, and more.
Other Supplements To Take With CBD Oil
CBD oil mixes well with other herbal and nutritional supplements for different health conditions. The best supplements to take depends on what you’re aiming to support.
Here are a few examples of supplements commonly used with CBD products:
1. For Arthritis & Joint Pain — CBD Oil, boswellia, glucosamine
2. For Stress & Anxiety — CBD oil, kava, magnesium, L-theanine
3. For Insomnia & Sleep Disorders — CBD oil, melatonin, L-tryptophan
4. For Inflammation & Pain — CBD Oil, turmeric, B vitamins
Summary: Top-Three CBD Oil Brands in 2020
CBD has gone from being an unimportant compound in marijuana — to one of the most highly sought after health supplements of the decade.
Along with the hype, these supplements come a lot of unethical startups aimed at taking advantage of consumers. They’ll put together cheap, low-grade CBD products, slap some attractive branding and promising health claims, and charge a small fortune for it. None of these products are going to deliver on the promises — which has led many people to associate CBD with snake oil.
But this couldn’t be further from the truth.
CBD oils are very useful health supplements, and there are a ton of scientific studies to back this up. This is only possible if the CBD oil is free from harmful additives of contaminants, and contains a potent dose of CBD.
If you’re looking for a quality brand that’s worth the money — go for the 1000 or 2500 mg CBD oils by Royal CBD or the 1200 mg CBD oil from Gold Bee. Neither of these products will disappoint.