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Concentrate vs Flower: The Differences You Should Know

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Long gone are the days when flower was the only type of cannabis product you could find in order to consume. In today’s world of weed, licensed retail storefronts have a plethora of cannabis products to choose from. Consumers are literally spoilt for choice, often caught in the concentrate vs flower dilemma. 

Whether you’re a new or veteran consumer, this ultimate guide will help you decide on which one of the two is best for you. We’ll also answer some frequently asked questions about vaping concentrate vs flower, and cover all the benefits and differences to know. 

Concentrate vs Flower: The Basic Differences

With any product, the original version is bound to be improved on or innovated. The same goes for the cannabis flower and the outcome of industry advancements for extraction. Now, users have the choice of consuming either concentrates or flower in cannabis vaporizers and other devices.

As essential as knowing how to vape concentrates or flower is to understand the difference between the two. Let’s look at how they differ. 

  • Cannabis flower
    Cannabis flower, also called buds, or nugs, is the most old-fashioned form of consuming cannabis. The buds are harvested off the plants, dried and cured for consumption, and allow consumers to enjoy the benefits in their original form. Each varying strain has its own unique terpene profile for varying aromas and taste, and even bud size and color, which appeal differently to a wide audience of connoisseurs and beginners. The flower is broken up or ground up using a grinder, then placed in vaporizers, bongs, bowls, joints, or blunts.
  • Cannabis concentrates
    Concentrates, on the other hand, are the extracted oils from the plant that provide the cannabis flower’s effects in a concentrated form. The process involves high-tech equipment and uses solvent-based or solventless methods to isolate and extract the oil from the plant’s flower. Cannabis concentrates are much more potent because it’s the ‘concentrated’ version of flower. 
  • Often referred to as ‘extracts’ or ‘dabs’, concentrates come in various forms, such as shatter, wax, live resin, and distillate or oil, and can be dabbed with a dab rig, or vaporized in a dab pen or cannabis vaporizer

    Now that you know the key difference in the concentrate vs flower toss-up, let’s dive deep into the benefits of each form. 

    Cannabis Flower

    Benefits of Cannabis Flower

    People have been smoking cannabis flower for centuries. It even dates back to ancient civilizations. It’s one of the most readily available cannabis product types and is often liked for the fun, ritualistic elements that come with it, such as rolling a joint, sparking a bowl, enjoying the aromas, or getting high with friends. 

    The flower in its natural form contains a variety of cannabinoids, such as THC, CBD, CBG, and CBN that produce unique effects, and also terpenes such as Limonene, Myrcene, and Linalool that produce unique scents. 

    Altogether, these compounds are capable of producing an ‘entourage effect,’ which is a proven phenomenon that cannabinoids and terpenes work together to amplify one another’s effects. 

    Beyond its accessibility, and ease of use, one of the main benefits of cannabis flower is that it’s cost-effective and much cheaper than concentrates. 

    Benefits of Cannabis Concentrates

    Even though cannabis concentrates are more expensive than flower, they are much more potent, too. While flower may contain 15-30% THC, concentrates often contain anywhere from 70-99% THC, which allows users to consume less for a more potent cannabis experience. 

    One of the key benefits of concentrates outside of their potency is that they’re odorless and highly discreet for use. You can achieve an ‘entourage effect’ if you try out strain-specific or full-spectrum concentrates, such as live rosin, which contains the whole plant profile of cannabinoids and terpenes. 

    Today, concentrates are highly favored by medicinal users since you can dose less quantity due to their high potency and experience a longer duration of effects. 

    So, what are some other differences you should be aware of when considering the concentrate vs flower toss-up? 

    Cannabis Concentrates

    Vaping Concentrate vs Flower: What You Need to Know

    To vape flower or concentrate, you’ll need a flower vaporizer or concentrate vaporizer. Concentrates are often manufactured into vape carts that are attached to a battery for heating, vaporizing, and inhaling. You can also vape flower and concentrates with refillable vaporizers. 

    The devices come equipped with a power source, heating apparatus, and a chamber that holds your flower or concentrate. In fact, some advanced vaporizer models can facilitate vaporizing both flower and concentrate with a specialized extract pad addition. 

    Vaporizing provides a smoother, more flavorful experience and produces a much less intense smoke, which is good for discretion. It’s also less messy and more convenient than traditional methods of smoking flower as there’s no ash to discard, or lighters to carry. 

    How do the effects of vaping concentrate vs flower differ? Let’s find out. 

    Concentrate vs Flower: Effects Compared

    The most important difference to understand between the high and effects of concentrate vs flower is potency. Since concentrates can be two to three times more potent than flower, its buzz is much more intense. 

    Of course, the exact effects you experience when vaping flower or concentrate will be determined by the cannabis strain type. For instance, indica strains tend to produce sleepier or sedating effects, while sativa strains tend to be more energizing and uplifting. 

    You can expect both flower and concentrate effects to kick in almost immediately after the first inhale. However, the effects of concentrates tend to be comparatively more intenses. flower. Also, the effects of concentrates often last longer as compared to flower, depending on the amount you consume, the dosage, and potency.              

    Concentrate vs Flower: FAQs

    It’s natural to have questions on the subject of vaping concentrate vs flower, and deciding which is right for you. Here are the answers to the most commonly asked questions to help you make a decision. 

    Will concentrate get me higher than flower? 

    Yes, concentrates will get you higher or produce more intense effects as compared to flower due to their higher THC percentages. 

    How much will a gram of concentrate cost me? 

    Concentrate costs vary from state to state, market to market, but on average, a gram of concentrate costs anywhere from $30-$60. 

    Which is better to smoke, concentrate or flower? 

    If you’re a beginner, it might be best to start with flower and get used to its effects before moving on to concentrates. If you’re a seasoned cannabis consumer looking for more intense effects, then you should try out concentrates. It’ll also depend on your lifestyle, and which type suits you better in terms of odor, discretion, and cost. 

    Which One is Better in Terms of Value for Money? 

    For most cannabis consumers, it may come down to budget to decide if concentrates or flowers are right for them. So, which one is better in terms of value for money? As we’ve discussed, it’ll depend on the market in the state you live in, and the price of cannabis near you. 

    In general, a gram of flower costs $10-$20, while a gram of concentrate costs anywhere from $30-$60 depending on the quality. However, you’ll consume more or less the same quantity with both types. So it’ll ultimately come down to your personal preference. 

    cannabis vape

    Concentrate vs Flower: Time to Make a Decision

    Now that you know about the concentrate vs flower properties, differences, and effects, you can make the decision of which will be best for you. Luckily, with the growing popularity and speedy expansion of legal cannabis markets, both product types are easy to buy. 

    If you plan to consume both regularly, buying a cannabis vaporizer that supports vaping both concentrates and flower will be ideal. That way, you don’t have to purchase two separate devices. Check out the Firefly 2+ weed vaporizer, which is equally compatible with flowers and extracts, ready in three seconds, and easy to load and clean.