Full Spectrum vs Broad Spectrum vs Isolate – What’s the difference?

When shopping for CBD, you may feel overwhelmed with the choice in different products. From MG options to CBD potencies…hemp seed extract or CBD oil…the possibilities are seemingly endless. But one trait is especially important to know, as it will affect the effects you feel. That is whether or not the CBD product you’re considering is full spectrum, broad spectrum or isolate CBD. So, what’s the difference between each? Let’s learn more about this crucial CBD terminology so you can better choose, which CBD is best for you.

Hemp to CBD 101

To understand the difference in full spectrum vs. broad spectrum vs. isolate goods, it’s important to understand how CBD is extracted from the hemp plant. As one of the key differences between each type of CBD, is how much plant matter and other cannabinoids are included in their end-products.

Hemp plants produce nearly 400 different compounds, including the most noteworthy cannabinoids, CBD and THC. With the recent increase in cannabis testing and analysis, we’re also discovering more about lesser-known cannabinoids like CBG, CBC, CBN, THCA, amongst others. Like CBD and THC, they all deliver their own unique health effects.

In addition to cannabinoids, hemp naturally contains plant matter like phytonutrients, vitamins, flavonoids, and terpenes. Together, they’re rich in beneficial effects as well. Once the hemp plant is fully mature, it’s harvested and ready for processing. Through varied extraction methods, the beneficial compounds are isolated to be infused into oils and CBD goods.

That’s where the difference between full spectrum, broad spectrum and isolate comes into play. Which cannabinoids and plant matter is extracted makes each type unique. Next we’ll cover each variety, and how they vary.

Full Spectrum

Fairly obvious from its title, full spectrum delivers the complete profile of hemp plant material, and not just CBD. While CBD might be the most prevalent cannabinoid, full-spectrum products contain any and all cannabinoids that the hemp plant strain produced. Even THC. So most notably, full-spectrum goods contain traces of THC, which must be less than .3% to be sold as a legal CBD product. Nonetheless, the THC present can still provide benefits without its normally psychoactive effects.

With flavonoids, terpenes, and plant material, the cannabinoids found in full-spectrum products are known to deliver an ‘entourage effect’. Meaning, by working together they each amplify their natural benefits. A recent study even concluded that full spectrum CBD delivers increased relief, due to the interaction of plant compounds.

Due to full-spectrum CBD goods containing additional plant matter, like flavonoids and terpenes, the products can come with a distinct taste or scent. Specifically depending on the strain of the plant that was used. The most common terpenes found in hemp plants include limonene, myrcene, pinene or linalool which are citrus, woody, floral or earthy in aromas.

If you’re looking to avoid THC all together, then full-spectrum CBD might not be for you. Which leads us to our next explanation of broad spectrum CBD. Let’s find out what makes this type ideal for many.

Broad Spectrum

Broad spectrum CBD has full spectrum like benefits, but without any traces of THC. For those who are weary of having THC in their system for drug testing, but want to reap the benefits of the ‘entourage effect’ that proves so beneficial, broad spectrum is the way to go.

Broad spectrum CBD oils are extracted just like full spectrum products are, with one extra step. Removing the THC cannabinoid completely from the final end-product. You’ll still receive whole plant benefits from hemp nutrients and vitamins but without the fear of THC’s effects or presence in your system.


CBD isolate is said to be CBD in its purest form. If you’ve been wondering what that means, we’re here to explain. Isolate purity comes from its absence of any other compound or cannabinoid. Meaning that CBD isolate products contain just CBD, and only CBD – hence, why it’s so ‘pure’.

Isolate products can sometimes come with a higher cost, due to the level of extraction it takes to reach its’ purity and potency. Most isolate products are normally 99.9% CBD which means the processors remove all chlorophyll, essential oils, wax and other cannabinoids found in the hemp plant being extracted. This process can be quite more tedious, then producing full spectrum or broad spectrum products.

Some CBD users are sensitive to plant matter material, or THC – making CBD isolate ideal for their use. In addition, CBD isolate is often preferred due to its lack of scent or taste. Because CBD isolate does not contain plant flavonoids or terpenes, it’s scentless and flavorless. But, to enhance the taste of these products many brands have begun infusing flavors into isolate goods.

What should I choose?

 To make the decision between CBD full spectrum vs. broad spectrum vs. isolate, let’s summarize the key differences that are important to consider.

CBD Types Table

The Final Word on CBD Types

Depending on the condition, or reason you’re using CBD will make your ultimate choice. Each variation will affect every individual differently depending on size, health, weight, etc. So, be sure to gauge your own personal experience with full spectrum, broad spectrum or isolate products, rather than how it may have affected someone else.

Now that you fully understand how hemp plants are extracted to make CBD goods, you can better choose which CBD is for you. Deciphering the difference between full spectrum vs. broad spectrum vs. isolate is the first step to take when making that decision. Regardless of your choice, be sure to always choose the highest quality CBD for the best results. Natures Pure is happy to carry the finest extracted CBD products, whether full, broad or isolate is for you.

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