CBD is safe for consumption and has been scientifically shown to have a vast range of benefits for boosting mental and physical health. Unfortunately, the rise of CBD’s popularity has given birth to unscrupulous manufacturers and brands trying to take advantage of unknowledgeable consumers who might not know how to spot the fake stuff from the real thing. Don’t let this happen to you.
These companies use inferior products or even products without any CBD and rely on cheap alternatives to copy the look and taste of CBD but without the actual benefits. Synthetically lab-produced cannabinoids used for making CBD oil can have the opposite effect that you are looking for; offering no benefits and potentially harming your overall health. Not only that, fake CBD oil can lead to athletes failing drug tests, tarnishing their reputation and putting their career at risk.
Typically, fake CBD oil contains THC levels higher than 0.3%, along with other contaminants making it dangerous to consume and crucial for you to be able to know when you see it and avoid them at all costs.
Here are some of the things to be on the lookout for and a few ways to tell the difference between fake CBD oil and the real thing. While not everything on this list automatically means the CBD isn’t authentic if you notice any of these red flags it’s a good idea to be cautious and do some more research.
Tips for Identifying and Avoiding Fake CBD Oil
The first step in making sure you’re buying genuine CBD is to understand the different types. Generally CBD can be broken down into three categories:
- CBD Isolate (pure CBD with no other cannabinoids, terpenes, or plant materials)
- Broad Spectrum CBD (contains CBD and all other compounds within the plant but no THC)
- Full Spectrum CBD (contains CBD and all other compounds within the plant, and small amounts of THC - less than 0.3%)
No or Fake COA (Certificate of Analysis)
Every CBD manufacturer that claims to sell original products should always provide a COA or Certification of Analysis. The COA summarizes significant lab results that validate their CBD oil products' authenticity, quality, and potency and that it has been tested at multiple stages in the process from farm to finished product.
You can find this info by reaching out to the brand’s customer service or taking a look at their website. Always make sure the product comes with a COA; proving that they are and do what they say.
Here are a few examples of what a certificate of analysis might include:
- Potency tests that show the amounts of CBD, THC and minor cannabinoids match what’s on the label.
- Residual Solvents tests that makes sure there aren’t traceable amounts in the finished products and you’re getting a pure hemp product.
- Residual pesticides tests that makes sure the products are safe for you to consume.
- Microbial tests to make sure there’s no mold growing in the oil.
Looking for the below could also help when determining the credentials of a CBD company:
- Third Party Testing - Never choose a product that doesn’t offer third party testing results. In fact, the government made it mandatory for companies to have their products tested by third-party labs to confirm their authenticity and that they don’t contain any contaminants.
- ISO-17025 Certified – this accreditation shows that the testing lab operates competently and delivers accurate results.
- QR Codes – This offers the chance to check lab reports by just scanning a QR code with your phone. Even if you don’t try it; the fact that it’s offered is usually a good sign.
At Easy Day, all of our CBD products are thoroughly tested and held to the highest standard. In fact, you can read the lab test results on our website and scan a qr code for every one of our products. So you can rest easy knowing you can trust the purity and dosage in everything we offer.
Inaccurate Amounts of CBD
Another thing to watch out for are brands claiming their products have a higher CBD percentage than they actually do. This selling practice is irresponsible and potentially harmful for the consumer. Remember to look for the CBD content on the label to determine the concentration and measure what you are paying for.
- Additional Tip: You should also check for the levels of THC in the product. CBD products should contain 0.3% or less amounts of THC as is permitted by law. Anything found to be above this line is technically illegal and no longer classified as hemp. Be wary of any brands that claim their products have higher amounts.
Look At The Bottle
You might not think the color of the bottle should matter but CBD oil is light sensitive and can be affected when exposed to ultraviolet light. When it comes to CBD oil make sure that it’s sold in darker bottles which helps prevent deterioration and maintains its quality. Be wary of companies that sell their CBD in clear or glass bottles; as this could be an indication of a lower quality product, and a brand who might not care as much about their product's effectiveness and longevity.
Miracle Cure Claims
By now, you’re probably aware of the vast range of potential therapeutic and physical benefits of CBD oil as well as its scientifically backed ability to potentially aid in helping relieve symptoms of different kinds of medical conditions. However, you should be wary of any company that makes extravagant medical claims about their products or that it is a miracle cure for major diseases like cancer or Alzheimer’s.
This has become even more relevant and dangerous in 2021; where some companies have started claiming their products can prevent or cure COVID-19.
Free CBD Giveaways
Many brands offer promotional discounts and sales on their products which is completely fine and you should be taking advantage of them, but if you spot free CBD that seems too good to be true, it might be. Most consumers are unaware that the process of extracting and manufacturing genuine CBD oil is quite costly and complicated. If a store offers free CBD, it makes it even more important to remember to check the COA and the label.
- Additional Tip: Further, you should avoid vendors that ask for your credit card details in exchange for a free bottle. In many cases, this ends up being a scam and difficult to get out of. Remember, to do your homework on the brand before just looking for free CBD.
Avoid Buying CBD on Amazon
While Amazon has a ‘no CBD policy’ they do allow some hemp products. Some companies try to take advantage of this loophole by selling fake hemp extract products to potential buyers or hemp seed oil to those not educated on the products. We always recommend finding a brand you trust and buying directly from their website.
Finished Product: Hemp Seed Oil vs Hemp-Derived CBD Oil
There’s nothing wrong with hemp seed oil. Hemp seeds have a rich amount of fatty acids, nutrients, and can have a number of benefits for the user. Hemp seed oil is rich in Omega 6 and 3, and is high in vitamin E known for its antioxidant properties. It’s even sold at health food stores and is used in both cooking and skincare. These aspects along with its anti-inflammatory properties and taste provide an even better end product when used in the production of CBD products like pet tinctures.
However, when it comes to finished product while both come from the hemp plant there is a difference between hemp seed oil and CBD oil derived from hemp that you should be aware of.
While Hemp seed oil is healthy for you to consume because the CBD content in hemp seed by itself is low; it won’t help in alleviating symptoms or improving your well-being like CBD oil would.
The issue is some companies take advantage of the fact that some consumers might not understand the difference between hemp seed oil and CBD derived from hemp by overcharging for products that are cheaper to make and less effective.
Basically, if you see hemp seed oil was used it will provide you with valuable benefits but you should also check if the product contains CBD. That way you know what you’re actually paying for. It’s also a good practice to learn everything you can about how the CBD is sourced and processed.
- Additional Tip: Always check the ingredients on the brand’s website or product label. It usually has valuable insight into the production. You also might find the product contains chemicals or other contaminants fake companies can use to fool consumers.
Low-Grade Synthetic CBD
The hemp-derived CBD industry has come a long way and is expanding at an exponential rate. Yet, we continue to come across disheartening updates related to people falling sick after using synthetic or fake CBD oil. With many of them under the impression they are consuming natural CBD but in fact are using low-quality lab-produced synthetic CBD.
Why do people buy these fake CBD oil products? Generally, it comes down to their cheap price, false claims of not showing up on drug tests, the promise of miracle solutions to health concerns or just overall lack of knowledge.
Unfortunately, many consumers fall victim to these fraudulent products. Not only do these brands lie to their customers, but they also endanger their lives. The CDC also issued a nationwide health warning against using harmful human-made synthetic cannabinoids.
Finding CBD You Know You Can Trust
Here are a few takeaways to remember when buying CBD oil:
- Make sure the brand provides adequate information about the extraction, production, and testing of their products.
- Reputed brands selling genuine products offer proof of their authenticity to consumers by posting results issued by third-party laboratories and a Certificate of Analysis.
- Always check the label for ingredients and more information.
- Be wary of free giveaways and if it sounds too good to be true make sure to do your research.
- If you’re buying oil; make sure it's in a darker colored bottle.
- Always buy from a trusted online store so you can be sure that the product you are buying is free of toxins and contaminants such as pesticides and heavy metals.
Now that you know how to spot fake CBD; the next step is finding a trusted company with quality products you can trust.
If you want to be absolutely sure your CBD is safe, trustworthy and up to the quality you deserve; you can rely on Easy Day Hemp. All of our products are tested multiple times before reaching our customers to ensure that they contain the quality we require of our products. And we prove it with certificates and quality testing results you can see.
We are also available to answer any questions you might have and provide further education on what to look for to ensure you have a safe and rewarding CBD experience.
And if you want to raise awareness and make sure others don’t fall into the trap of buying fake CBD; feel free to share this guide with others. Remember, knowledge is power.
Disclaimer: The FDA has not evaluated these statements. Our CBD products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any diseases. Consult your physician before taking any new supplements or beginning a new treatment plan. Must be 18+ years older to consume.