Hemp Oil vs CBD Oil: The Need For Clarity

Over the last years, hemp has been re-discovered as a super plant with multiple applications. The fibers can be used for construction materials, the seeds boast with many health benefits and Cannabinoids are the new go-to wellness ingredients. But with all these hemp-derived products on the market, it´s sometimes hard to tell which component of the plant was actually used to achieve the benefits. And to make things worse, some companies seem to be intentionally misleading customers just to cash in on the trend.

So let’s look at the differences between hemp (seed) oil, CBD oil, and CBD e-liquid to be able to navigate the hemp product landscape better in the future.

Hemp Seed Oil

Hemp seed oil is the product derived from the seeds of industrial hemp varieties. There are different types of it, depending on the production method, like cold-pressed or refined, as well as the treatment of the seeds (hulled or not, roasted, etc.). 

Although the taste is influenced by the production method, most hemp seed oils have a characteristic nutty aroma, a colour spectrum reaching from golden to green and all are rich in essential fatty acids. This makes them a wonderful addition to healthy, balanced nutrition. Hemp seed oil is best used cold on salads or on other foods after they have been cooked to preserve all the beneficial properties. 

Hemp seed oil is also a wonderful ingredient in skincare and other cosmetic products with multiple benefits including moisturization, anti-inflammatory, and even anti-aging properties. In the ingredient list, you will find it as “Cannabis Sativa Seed Oil”. 

The most important thing to keep in mind is that while hemp seed oil is definitely healthy and beneficial, it does not contain cannabinoids. 


CBD Oil on a wooden log

What we call CBD oil is most times a mixture of a hemp extract and carrier oil. The extract can either be full or broad-spectrum, containing mainly CBD but also other cannabinoids and residual terpenes, or a pure CBD isolate

As hemp extracts are either solid or really thick and pasty, they need to be diluted to make them a true oil that is easy to dose and apply. Most times, vegetable oils such as hemp seed oil, MCT coconut oil, or olive oil are used. Some pet products also use fish oil to make the products more attractive to cats and dogs. 

The aroma of CBD oil highly depends on the carrier oils used and the additional ingredients that are added, if any. The available aromas range from very neutral, natural hemp varieties to fruity ones like lemon and orange and even super-sweet options like mint chocolate or strawberry candy. Pet products often have meaty flavors like chicken, beef, or fish. 

Contrary to hemp seed oil, CBD oils are high in cannabinoids, with levels typically ranging from less than 1% to 10% and more. While the nutritional values of these products depend on the carrier oils used, the wellness effects are originating from the cannabinoid content.

CBD E-liquid

E-liquids (or “e-juices”) are products optimized for the use in electronic cigarettes, which means they are fully vaporizable and don´t leave a residue that might clog or burn the coil of your device. That´s why they are made with a mixture of PG, VG, e-liquid suitable flavouring and CBD isolate

These e-liquids are not interchangeable with CBD oil, last but not least because the vegetable oils that are used as carriers shouldn´t be inhaled. Worst case a CBD oil could contain other additives, like for example Vitamin E, that could be outright dangerous if they get into your lungs.

The main difference in composition between CBD E-liquid and CBD oil, while both contain cannabinoids, is that there is absolutely no oil (vegetable or other) present in the e-liquid and it should not be ingested. 


When navigating the landscape of hemp products, it is important to keep the differences between hemp seed oil, CBD oil, and CBD e-liquids in mind. You should always carefully check the label to make sure that what you are buying will give you the desired effect. 

Only buy from sources you trust, as there are companies that will try to sell you hemp seed oil for the price of CBD oil. If you want to buy products with cannabinoids in them, always look for the COAs that responsible companies will provide on their websites. 

Last but not least, only use products as instructed on the label, and if you’re not sure about something, reach out to customer service.

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31 thoughts on “Hemp Oil vs CBD Oil: The Need For Clarity

  1. RSO Oil says:

    Thanks for posting this awesome article. I’m a long time reader but I’ve never been compelled to leave a comment.

    I subscribed to your blog and shared this on my Twitter.

    Thanks again for a great article!

    1. Clara says:

      Thanks a lot Kelley 😀 It is great to hear! We will keep on spreading the cannabis education 🙂 Have a great day!

      1. Ifeoluwa says:

        Hi Clara, can you drop your twitter handle so I can follow your work to learn more

        1. Alana says:

          Check out @harmonyhemp on twitter or on instagram to follow our journey!

  2. matija says:

    Very informative. Was really confused when I was hearing different people discussing about hemp oil and CBD oil. This article really helps to bring some clarity over the matter. Really surprised that CBD oil does not contain any THC.
    Extremely glad that they made it possible to vape CBD via e-liquids.

    1. Clara says:

      We will keep on spreading the canna-education to who is willing to listen! Thank you, Matija for the support <3

  3. Pawel says:

    Hiya I wish to ask for your opinion im brand ambassador of kannaway Scotland is part of Medical Marihuana Inc. I have conversation with future customer she suffer for Bi solar disorder I recommend pure gold oil customer think is not strong enough because is on label hemp oil but have 1000mg CBD I wish to ask for yours opinions for this oil you can find it this product in link below
    Thank you all

    1. Alana says:

      Hey Pawel, Our products contain CBD but it is important to understand that they are not medicine. They don’t treat or cure any disease, physical ailment or condition. That being said I cannot recommend one way or the other what would be best in this scenario. Good luck on your CBD journey, we wish you all the best!

  4. Valerie Ross says:

    Most CBD oils, salves or cream do contain a legal amount of thc. The CBD oil I’m taking does have 0.03mg of thc which is legal in all 50 states.

    1. Alana says:

      Hey Valerie, thanks for reading and taking the time to check out Harmony!

  5. Bella Dushner says:

    Hello Guys! Can somebody help me with this. My friend recommends me the CBD oil and Hemp oil for me to use because I’m having a hard time to breath everytime i do my household chores. She told me that it may help reduce symptoms related to cancer and side effects related to cancer treatment, like nausea, vomiting, and pain. And upon researching about it i read this that the cannabis can help us in many ways as well as in medical purpose. So is this safe for me to use because im pregnant now for 2 months?

    1. Alana says:

      Hey Bella! We recommend you speak with your doctor about consuming anything out of the normal while pregnant. Thanks for reading!

  6. Mate says:

    Thank you for the clarification ! I thought that u could vape cbd oil but I understand the difference between cbd oil & vape juice/eliquids now 🙂

  7. Wow, i was eager to know about this topic. Thanks for the great explanation. Now i think i know enough about cbd oil and hemp oil.

    1. Alana says:

      Thanks for reading Gloria! Glad to hear this helped clear some things up <3

  8. Jonathan says:

    I like the idea of using a CBD e-liquid as a painkiller. Was reading this and it mentioned that is can be a good replacement for an anti-inflammatory like Ibuprofen, would a straight up CBD e-liquid do the job or would I need to find a cannabis oil one for the full entourage effect?

    1. Alana says:

      Hey Jonathan, thanks for reading! Harmony is a great way to discover and safely consume CBD but you should not think of it as a medicine. They don’t treat or cure any disease, physical ailment or condition. With our CBD e-liquids, you can enjoy a great taste and, at the same time, be sure about what you are vaporizing thanks to our high-quality control standards. We recommend speaking to a medical professional for more info on that!

  9. matthew says:

    hi – is a drink with hemp oil containting 0.4% CBD and less than 0.0015% THC in compliance from the CBD persective ?
    Thank you

    1. Alana says:

      Hey Matthew! Thanks for reaching out and asking. It depends on a lot of things, you would have to ask around to some CBD drink companies to find out more! Sorry I can’t be of more help, but good luck in your search 🙂

  10. Marcus says:

    Always searching the web for the difference between these 2 oils. Can’t thank you enough for such a nice article. I’m currently looking for some good CBD E-liquids. Hope it will help me with my chronic back pain 😉

    1. magda says:

      Hi Marcus, thank you for your message! Glad to hear we’ve given you some clarity on that topic. Please keep in mind our CBD e-liquids are not a medical product 🙂

  11. Piet Holthuysen says:

    Please can you tell me how many drops to take of Hemp CBD OIL a day ?

    1. Magda says:

      Hi Piet, we wrote this article as a general guide to give you clarity about the difference between each product. However, as we do not produce or sell Hemp CBD oil, we can’t give you a recommendation on how many drops to take personally. If you’d like any advice on CBD e-liquids, please feel free to ask 🙂

  12. Scott says:

    I’ve been wanting to know on how to understand the life cycle of a marijuana plant but I don’t know how to get started. I do research on my own, I also read lots of articles but this one caught my attention It has the content of all you about to know in planting and to understand the life cycle of marijuana plant.

    1. Magda says:

      Hey Scott, thanks for your message! Indeed it’s an interesting topic. Would you like to see Harmony write an article about the lifecycle of cannabis plants?

  13. Natalie says:

    The difference between these two has always stuck in my head though I have been taking CBD for around 2 years now. Reading this article I can understand that both are non-psychoactive and are indeed helpful. Anyways, I will always prefer to use CBD over anything.
    Also, I’ll make sure to test your E-liquid products this time 🙂

    1. Athena CS says:

      Thanks for the comment Natalie! We feel really passionate about education and we’re so glad we could help answer some of your questions with this article! If you think it might help others, share it with your friends! When you’re ready to try e-liquids, let us know if we can help you choose the perfect flavor! We have 11 (soon to be 12!) 🙂

  14. By going through the article, first time i came to know that cannabis and cannabinoid are use for treatment as well. Thank you for educating through your blog.

    1. Alana says:

      Thanks so much for reading! Keep in mind our products are not meant to treat, cure or diagnose any illness or disease.

  15. johan cruyff says:

    thanks so much share nice post. CBD oil is used to health problem issue solve it. for example mind stress problem

    1. Susie says:

      Hey Johan! Thanks for your comment. Our products contain CBD and it is important to understand that they are not medicine. They don’t treat, diagnose or cure any disease, physical ailment or condition. With our CBD products, you can enjoy a great taste and, at the same time, be sure about what you are consuming thanks to our high-quality control standards. Feel free to email us if you have any further questions!

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