Cannabis culture is always coming up with new methods to get high. The shape factors have changed dramatically over the last decade, and with them has come terminology such as full-spectrum, isolate, live resin, distillate, and broad-spectrum. These are all distinct types of cannabis extracts that have some shared characteristics.
The majority of vapers use distillate and live resin. So, what are the distinctions between a live resin cartridge and a distillate one? Is one superior to the other? Let’s look at how they’re made and what sets them apart.
What is Live Resin?
Fresh flowers from the cannabis plant are used to create new resin. To safeguard the precious trichomes, the plants are sliced down and frozen at the height of harvest. Terpenes and cannabinoids are created in the trichomes, which is where they live. Live resin is made from frozen cannabis blooms.
Fresh flowers include a thick, saucy extract that can resemble the crystallized honey left at the bottom of the jar. When utilizing fresh flowers, the plant’s terpene profile is preserved, resulting in a flavorful and complex aromatic extract with distinct aromas. It has an abundance of terpenes, which give it a juicy fruit flavor or musky mangoes or pungent herbs. Terpenes are truly active in live resin.
What does live resin look and feel like?
It comes in a wide range of colors and shapes. The sort of cultivar used to make the concentrate has an impact on many chemical and physical variables of the extract. Live resin is high in terpenes in greater amounts than other concentrates. The consistency is usually looser than other live resin concentrates owing to the inclusion of additional important oils. The higher the amount of terpenes, the slimmer and more malleable the concentrate becomes. Sap, sugar, shiver/shive, and sauce are some of the most frequent consistencies for live resin.
Another frequent and popular form of cannabis concentrate is shatter. However, if you can find it, live resin in the shape of shatter is extremely difficult to come by. Shatter has a brittle texture that cannot be produced using the live resin process since the terpenes’ liquidity prevents the concentrate from solidifying.
What’s the difference between live resin and sauce?
If it’s sauce, the plant material used to produce it is important. Fresh weed plants are frozen rapidly during processing to make live resin. In contrast, fresh plant matter or cured herb can start the process of making sauce. Cured plant material will not contain as many terpenes as live resin. Make sure you check the label and packaging of the sauce to determine if it’s nug sauce or real resin sauce.
Is live resin considered a ‘full spectrum extract?’
The long answer is, sometimes. Full-spectrum extracts are concentrates that attempt to preserve as much of the raw cannabis plant’s entire cannabinoid and terpene profile as possible. Depending on how the plant is treated, live resin might be regarded a full-spectrum extract. However, not all full-spectrum extracts are derived from fresh or frozen plant material. Kief, for example, is a full-spectrum concentrate made from cured rather than fresh or frozen cannabis plants.
How to store live resin
Keep it cool, dark, dry, and free of air to preserve its potency and quality. To help maintain the texture and consistency as well as protect the cannabinoids from degradation and the terpenes from evaporation, use an airtight and lightproof container. If you’re shopping for containers, look for those made of silicone or glass that are intended for concentrate storage. Silicone has another advantage: It’s simpler to remove sticky extracts out of it than plastic.
What is Distillate?
Another sort of extract, distillate, is used to create distillate. It’s more of a process than a “thing,” but the term “distillate” refers to a cannabis extract that focuses on one cannabinoid, usually THC. When a cannabis plant is chopped, dried, and cured after harvest, it can be extracted into oil. Crude oil with a lot of potential at this stage may be converted into concentrates such as shatter, wax, crumble, or budder depending on the post-extraction technique employed.
In the distillation of crude oil, fractional short-path distillation is used. You can extract each cannabis component since they have distinct boiling points as long as you use heat and pressure to separate them. Distillation is usually used to isolate THC in order to produce a highly concentrated liquid with a clear, odorless flavor.
Live Resin vs. Distillate: The Differences
The primary difference between live resin and distillate is the high terpene content in live resin. Distillate does not retain any terpenes after extraction. When compared to distillate, juice serves as a good mental picture.
Fresh-squeezed fruit juice is called resin, and distillate is the concentrated juice purchased from the store. They each have advantages and disadvantages, which are dependent on personal preference. Other notable distinctions include the extraction method, terpene and cannabinoid content, and smoking experience
The Extraction Process
The key distinction between the processes is that live resin is produced from frozen cannabis, while distillate is made from cured cannabis that has been dehydrated. The extraction procedures may differ based on the type of solvent utilized (if any), winterization and decarboxylation methods, and other proprietary processes. You can produce a distillate as well as a live resin on the same equipment, but the post-extraction treatments vary.
Live resin may be produced by freezing or freshly chopping and extracting plant material. The end product is considered live resin as long as the plant matter is frozen or freshly cut and extracted. Once decarboxylated, live resin is ready to use.
The last stage of the distillation process is to fractionate the extract. The cannabinoids are removed from the plant material in this step, leaving a thick, clear or yellowish liquid that is mostly composed of cannabinoids.
The distillate has a considerably higher cannabinoid content, but it is devoid of all terpenes. Live resin contains less cannabinoids and more terpenes than distillate.
The bulk of the money and time involved in resin production is spent on keeping the terpene content as high as possible. Terpenes are not only responsible for the scent but also for the flavor of each cannabis strain. They exist in various combinations, working with cannabinoids and flavonoids to provide a comprehensive range of mental and physical effects.
Terpenes are non-intoxicating cannabinoids that play an important part in the overall experience. Terpenes work together with cannaboids to generate what is known as the “entourage effect.” This phrase is used to describe the entire pleasant impact of ingesting these living plant compounds simultaneously.
The Entourage Effect
The entourage effect happens when many cannabinoids and terpenes work together. Some schools of thought believe that keeping the plant’s chemicals in their natural state is the best approach to get the most out of it. Adding non-cannabinoid terpenes to a distillate, for example (hello strawberry vape?) is not as beneficial as adding back the terpenes that were removed during distillation.
The Smoking Experience
The debate over live resin vs. distillate is ultimately a matter of personal preference. You may want to vape a vibrant, juicy live resin that makes you hungry for more taste. You may also desire an odorless distillate on occasion. Alternatively, you might prefer to get exceptionally high and consume a greater amount of THC.
When it comes to the high, live resin is comparable to smoking the dried flower. Distillate, on the other hand, will offer a more intense high at first but will then fade as there are fewer beneficial cannabinoids and terpenes in the entourage effect to activate.
Which Should You Choose?
Live resin and distillate are both created for specific reasons. There is no advantage or disadvantage to either, and each has a role in the enormous worldwide cannabis market. When it comes to picking an extract, the most essential thing to consider is the quality of the product and the purity of the extract.
Always examine a cannabis processor to be sure they’re using safe, clean extraction methods and following all state requirements. Every extract should always be able To look at the entire process of the production. It also helps if they are enthusiastic about cannabis and are utilizing the greatest flower you can provide—quality in, quality out.