On the famed 710 stoner holiday (which you can learn more about here) it seemed appropriate to do a little 101 on the most popular kinds of cannabis oil. Cannabis oil is, in short, a concentrated form of cannabis that is generally vaporized for consumption but also used for edibles or to enhance a joint sometimes.
The rise of cannabis oil, and other various cannabis concentrates, has only happened in the past few years. I hadn't even heard of the term "dabbing" until 2012 when my partner told me about doing dabs in Southern California, well before I ever saw them around parties in Oregon. It was in 2013 when I heard about the 710 (which is "OIL" upside and backwards) holiday being compared to the 420 holiday and becoming an official stoner holiday. While 420 has been celebrated for decades by stoners, the 710 stoner holiday is a newer stoner holiday that celebrates cannabis concentrates specifically.
There are lots of different types of cannabis concentrates. Some of these concentrates, including various kinds of hash and kief, have been being extracted and enjoyed by consumers for almost as long as cannabis has been used recreationally. However, other concentrates, such as BHO and CO2 oils, are what are celebrated on today's 710 stoner holiday.
BHO, or butane hash oil, is an extremely potent cannabis concentrate popularly used for dabbing. The cannabinoids are drawn out of the cannabis plant through butane extraction, which leaves behind a wax (or oil) that will keep a sticky consistency (kind of like honey) or will harden up. The hardened version is generally referred to as “shatter.” Because of the high level of concentration of cannabis in this oil, BHO is a popular remedy for chronic pain and other symptoms that plague medical marijuana patients. BHO can also be extracted into a form that can be used in vape pen cartridges as well.
CO2 oil is a concentrate made with botanical extractors that use pressure and carbon dioxide to separate plant material. This method, called supercritical fluid extraction, is one of the most effective ways of reducing cannabis to its essential compounds. The oil it produces can be vaporized in a variety of ways, one of the most popular being vaporizer pens. Although not as popular for dabbing as BHO, this method of consumption is also possible for CO2 oil.
Whatever concentrate you choose to consume to celebrate 710 today, make sure the extraction methods used were clean and that all of your oils pass certified lab inspections. Interested in making your own? Check out this article from Vice. Or, if you are in Oregon like me, check out some of the fantastic concentrates produced by Willamette Valley Alchemy or Dab Society Extracts for wax or shatter, or for vape pens the Craft Reserve line from Open Vape done with Yerba Buena. For on-the-go dabbing equipment, my favorites are The Dipper by Dipstick Vapes and the Boost by Dr. Dabber.