The ABCs of CBD: Which Cannabidiol Products to Use and Why

We take a look at various CBD products available in the Greater Cincinnati area

Apr 16, 2019 at 3:12 pm
click to enlarge CBD oil - Photo: Sean M. Peters
Photo: Sean M. Peters
CBD oil

CBD products are those made with cannabidiol, a non-psychoactive ingredient found in the cannabis plant. Unlike with tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) — the compound that produces the heady, psychotropic effect associated with traditional marijuana usage — there's no "high" feeling and many tout a number of benefits associated with regular CBD use including its anti-inflammatory effects, its ability to curb anxiety and its use as a natural sleep aid.

Most local head shops and plenty of vape shops offer some form of CBD products. You can also have products mailed to you pretty easily from both local and non-local online outlets. 

Before we jump in, a warning: Using full-spectrum CBD products regularly can show up on drug tests, yielding a "false positive" result. This depends on your body type, your dosage amount and the frequency of ingestion. (CBD products may contain trace amounts of THC, but should have less than .3 percent.) If your job is at risk based on the results of a drug test, it's recommended you talk with your employer before beginning a regimen of CBD (or check out your local smoke shop's variety of quick detox drinks for peace of mind). You may also want to tell your doctor (some require drug tests for certain prescriptions to make sure patients aren’t using other drugs).

Basically — be sure to research everything before you decide to use CBD.


In terms of practicality, dosage control, effectiveness and versatility, there’s no better way to get your CBD than from tinctures. Rosebud CBD’s line of oils are a boutique offering. Founded by Loveland-native Alexis Rosenbaum, Rosebud CBD sources sun-grown hemp from Oregon. The oil is available in three potency levels: in a half-ounce bottle the CBD content can range from 350 mg to 700 mg and 1,000 mg. The hemp extract is blended with coconut oil, so the product is vegan, non-GMO, gluten-free and organically grown. You take your desired amount, determined by your familiarity with the effects and the potency of your oil, with the included dropper by squirting it under your tongue, which is the most effective way to introduce the CBD to your bloodstream. It’s also common for people to add their CBD oil to beverages and snacks, though the effect is delayed slightly by having to wait to reach the stomach before truly working its course. For anybody who would like to try CBD farmed in our region, Jason Friedman, otherwise known as the Ohio CBD Guy, has partnered with Pharm CBD out of Bedford, Kentucky to produce his 500 mg full-spectrum oil tincture. It’s flavored with cinnamon and mint, but Friedman’s shop in Covington (105 Park Place, has other more neutral flavor options as well. Queen City Hemp, which makes CBD Seltzer, also offers a sublingual tincture in 250 mg, 500 mg and 750 mg.

click to enlarge CBD "joint" - Photo: Hailey Bollinger
Photo: Hailey Bollinger
CBD "joint"

Pre-Rolled Cone (aka CBD Joint)

Akin to a, ahem, “marijuana cigarette,” pre-rolled CBD joints are referred to as “cones” because of their shape, which is widest at the end you light and thinnest at the filtered tip from which you inhale. The CBD Axis Hemp Rock cones sampled for this article contain about 1.5 grams of hemp flower, which has been lab tested to ensure consistent levels of CBD and only trace amounts of THC. Available in traditional smoke shops, the cones are wrapped in RAW brand rolling papers, which are unbleached and vegan approved (the gummy strip licked like an envelope prior to rolling other brands of papers contains animal byproducts). To be frank, this is more a novelty than a practical way to ingest CBD over a long term. While the cone's hemp is engineered to offer large amounts of CBD, there are easier and less smoky alternatives. The smoke's flavor is similar to old school marijuana, but somewhat woodier. There are anecdotes of habitual marijuana smokers using CBD cones as a way to wean themselves off "the real stuff." The smell is quite similar as well, so it's not recommended you light up in public anywhere a police officer might sniff you out; they're probably not interested in your assurances that it's technically a mostly legal joint. If you'd rather microdose instead of taking a big wallop of CBD in one go, it's practical to simple empty out portions of the cone's contents into a pipe or a dry herb vaporizer, which gives you somewhat more control over the amount you'll smoke. There are also a variety of loose herb nuggets, the same hemp found in cones only unground, available wherever cones are sold.

click to enlarge CBD vape accessories - Photo: Paige Deglow
Photo: Paige Deglow
CBD vape accessories

Vape Pens

Slim, discreet, easy to use and highly practical for steady dosing through the day, vape pens are a popular way to ingest CBD. They're only as large as an ink pen in most cases and are capable of providing hundreds of puffs before needing replacement. Cigarette smokers should take advantage of this technology as it's less odorous, nicotine-free and packs all of the same health benefits CBD offers in other forms. While medical research on the effects of vaping is still underreported, it's arguably a much healthier alternative to smoking anything.

click to enlarge CBD gummies - Photo: Paige Deglow
Photo: Paige Deglow
CBD gummies


Just like the “hash brownies” of yesteryear, food has always been a popular way to ingest cannabis. Whether you want cookies, gummies, chocolates or any number of snacks, there’s a CBD option sure to suit your tastes. This is good for a casual introduction into CBD if you don’t smoke or vape. There’s an added bonus: the “munchies” effect you get from smoking regular old weed is not prevalent with CBD products, so you don’t have to go through that vicious cycle of eating an edible, getting stoned, getting the munchies and inadvertently reaching for another edible as a snack. Cannabis culture has matured in recent years.

click to enlarge CBD bath bombs - Photo: Paige Deglow
Photo: Paige Deglow
CBD bath bombs

Bath Bombs

Here’s the ultimate luxurious night at home: Throw a CBD-loaded bath bomb in the tub, crack open a CBD seltzer, listen to CityBeat’s "Cincinnati High" playlist and, heck, tap a rip off that CBD pre-roll. When did everything get so groovy? CBD bath bombs absorb through your pores, giving you a whole-body immersion in its good vibes.

Topical Creams

CBD’s anti-inflammatory effects are wonderful when applied to the skin. It’s said to be beneficial to people with skin irritation and is very easy to apply to localized areas that are bruised, swollen or exhibit any other sort of discomfort. If you already have CBD oil, it’s as simple as mixing some in with your favorite skin cream and using it normally. Of course, there’s no shortage of branded options as well for any multitude of needs. Queen City Hemp again offers a product here: a Kentucky hemp seed oil salve with 100 mg of full-spectrum cannabinoids in a 2-ounce jar.

click to enlarge CBD seltzer - Photo: Hailey Bollinger
Photo: Hailey Bollinger
CBD seltzer

Queen City Hemp CBD Seltzers

This is one of the greatest local products to hit the market in recent years. Not only are the bubbly drinks crisp and lightly flavored, they have no sodium or sugar. Each can comes with 5 mg of CBD, a fraction compared to the dosage offered by other products, but these cans of seltzer water are the perfect treat for someone who would like to avoid alcohol but still feel like they're enjoying an indulgence (with all the benefits of getting hydrated and taking CBD, too). Of course, there's no shortage of cocktail recipes that could include this lightly flavored seltzer. It's a shame we don't have a taproom that exclusively offers CBD beverages. 

The photos of items courtesy of Planet Caravan Smoke Shop feature products that are Farmville 2018 Compliant Industrial Hemp.

*This story has been updated to reflect changes in Ohio's CBD laws