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If you think prices for CBD are all over the place, you're right.

Cannabidiol (CBD) makers are charging drastically different price points for various products, with an ounce varying from $30 to $200. The cost of cannabidiol per milligram can range from 7 cents to 35 cents, depending on the mode of delivery.  Prices also change for larger quantities and across a company's line of offerings.

It's hard to tell what's a good value. We saved you from wasting hours on your calculator and crunched the numbers. We surveyed three popular brands across four common CBD consumption modes (capsules, tinctures, topicals, and vape pens).  To establish a baseline of comparison, we settled on one metric: price per milligram.

Here's how they stack up:

CBD Capsules

CBDistillery Full Spectrum Softgels

Why it made the list: CBDistillery's 30 milligram capsules contain full-spectrum CBD, which prevailing wisdom says provides the widest array of beneficial terpenes. Balanced Health Botanicals, the brand's four-year-old, vertically integrated parent company, said it produces 5,000 kilograms of CBD per year using a carbon dioxide (CO2) extraction technique, 20,000 kilograms of CBD isolate per year on hundreds of acres across four states, enough to stock 1,500 stores nationwide with its isolate and full-spectrum products. The gelatin softgels resemble similarly transparent fish oil capsules but contain a base of medium-chain triglyceride (MCT) coconut oil.

900 milligrams x 30 capsules: $60

Cost: 7 cents per milligram, or $2 per capsule

Plus CBD Oil

Why it made the list: Plus CBD Oil publishes a reassuringly detailed description online of its traceability, quality control, and ongoing research. The brand comforts the canna-curious with a certification from the U.S. Hemp Authority. The San Diego-based company's various formulas are available in 10-, 30-, and 60-count bottles, allowing newcomers to sample dosages and formulas without making a big initial investment. Its 15-milligram softgels contain full-spectrum hemp extract in an extra-virgin olive oil base. The company offers lower milligram softgel options, with 15 milligrams per capsule as the highest dose.

900 milligrams x 60 capsules: $89.95

Cost: 10 cents per milligram, or $1.49 per capsule

Get Zen Cannoprofen

Why it made the list: Get Zen's capsules made the list because it incorporates feedback from patients to create products. As a result, the company's edibles focus on ratios of cannabinoids, not terpenes or a specific strain.

One of its more popular CBD capsule lines is Cannabprofen, a play on the words cannabis and ibuprofen. The company uses CBD isolate in its capsules instead of full-spectrum hemp oil because customer feedback indicated that the isolate leads to less fatigue. Bottles of 30 capsules, a customer favorite, contain 25 milligrams per capsule. The Cannoprofen tests at 0.01% THC for consumers who cannot test positive for THC.

750 milligrams x 30 capsules: $80

Cost: 11 cents per milligram, or $2.67 per capsule

CBD Tinctures

White Fox Nectar Tranquility or Vitality Tinctures

Why it made the list: You will get 20 milligrams of full-spectrum CBD in a 2-milliliter dropperful of White Fox Nectar's tinctures. Made of MCT oil, maca, cordyceps, reishi, and peppermint, tinctures have a light peppermint flavor. The CBD is sourced from a small-batch organic hemp farm on the outskirts of Denver.  Additional herbs are sourced from the organic, wild-crafted herb farm, Mountain Rose Herbals.

“They are really conscious around over-harvesting with ethical practices,” said White Fox owner Scarlet Ravin. When it comes to seeking out ethically-grown sandalwood, for example, a notoriously overharvested crop, Ravin said, “it's expensive, but you're paying for you get.”  

300 milligrams x 30 milliliters: $55

Cost: 18 cents per milligram, $3.66 per 20-milligram dose

Lord Jones Royal Oil

Why it made the list:  Lord Jones' chic branding has made it an established celebrity favorite ever since Mandy Moore plugged its product line in 2018, a moment that The New York Times called a tipping point for CBD entering the mainstream. The 30-milliliter bottle of Lord Jones Royal Oil offers a minimalist formula that contains just two ingredients: grapeseed oil and 1,000 milligrams of broad-spectrum, hemp-derived CBD. The less-is-more approach gives this sublingual a definite cannabis flavor. Dosing for Royal Oil works out to 40 milligrams per full dropper and 20 milligrams per half-dropper, containing 25 full-dropper doses (50 half-dropper doses) per bottle.

1,000 milligrams x 30 milliliters: $100

Cost: 10 cents per milligram, $2 per 20-milligram dose

Steve's Goods CBD and CBG oil

Why it made the list: Steve's Goods is a well-known Colorado-based CBD producer, best known for preaching the benefits of the more expensive cannabinoid known as cannabigerol (CBG) oil. (We know, we know ... we're throwing another cannabinoid at you).  CBG is non-intoxicating and is thought to relieve pain, inflammation, insomnia and promote bone growth. The Steve's Goods tincture contains a 20-to-1 formulation of CBD to CBG,  which means for every 20 milligrams of CBD in the bottle, there is also 1 milligram of CBG. Adding another cannabinoid aids the effectiveness of CBD by eliciting the entourage effect. CBG is more than four times as expensive to extract than CBD, according to Steve's Goods, and it is one of the only companies on the market to provide CBG in a finished product.

“All of our hemp is grown in Colorado,” said company founder Steve Schultheis. “We partner with farmers that grow hemp, and labs that extract it to get our raw material and then we ensure it has the highest quality possible by testing for residual solvents and potency.”

1,000 milligrams x 30 milliliters: $120

Cost: 12 cents per milligram, or $2.40 per 20-milligram dose

CBD Topicals — Skincare and Pain Relief

Dr. Kerklaan's CBD Pain Relief

Why it made the list: Dr. Kerlaan's line of topicals use full-spectrum hemp oil to offer effective pain relief, especially in the feet, hips, and knees, according to user reviews. Scents of eucalyptus and peppermint add a bright, zingy aroma and add a desirable “cooling effect” from the menthol-esque ingredients. The 59-milliliter tube contains 180 milligrams of CBD (about 3 milligrams of CBD per milliliter). Dr. Kerklaan controls the manufacturing process, working in the Oregon hemp fields where the company's full-spectrum hemp is sourced.

180 milligrams x 59 milliliters: $68

Cost: 38 cents per milligram, or $2.26 per 2-milliliter dose

 

Muscle Freeze from Mary's Nutritionals

Why it made the list: Mary's Medicinals, a veteran cannabis company from Colorado, has an equally-lauded CBD company called Mary's Nutritionals. The full-spectrum CBD is extracted only from flowers, not seeds, to produce a higher-potency product, according to the company. The company makes a CBD topical called Muscle Freeze that's a favorite of spa professionals.  The powerful, mint-scented topical works uses activated hemp extract and is paraben-free. FYI: Don't touch your eyes after applying — its menthol “freezing” element is potent.

200 milligrams x 96.11 milliliters (3.25 oz.): $70

Cost: 35 cents per milligram

Saint Jane Luxury Beauty Serum

Why it made the list: Saint Jane Luxury Beauty Serum is a lightweight oil mixture of 20 botanicals intended for skin care.

Saint Jane CEO Casey Georgeson said CBD is only one important element in skin-care formulas.  “The curation of those ingredients is important; CBD's benefits are boosted because of what we put with it.”

Each dropper contains 8-10 milligrams of full-spectrum CBD sourced in the U.S., under controlled conditions. “We believe in CBD in the long term,”  Georgeson said. “We believe it's more than a trend, in order to architect the industry, we have to be responsible.” Though the serum seems pricey at first, the high number of milligrams of CBD in each bottle makes this a luxury product that offers a surprisingly good value per milligram of cannabidiol.

500 milligrams x 30 milliliters: $125

Cost: 25 cents per milligram

CBD for Vaping

cbdMD Vape Oil

Why it made the list: If you have a vape battery with a refillable cartridge, cbdMD's refillable vaping oil is among the more affordable and sustainable options on the market. Each vape serving, or the equivalent of 1 dropperful, comes out to 10 milligrams of CBD. The CBD oil is hybrid broad-spectrum and retains its CBG, cannabidivarin (CBDV), amino acids, and terpenes in a base of propylene glycol and vegetable glycerin. Flavors come in vanilla, mint, and orange.

300 milligrams x 30 milliliters: $30

Cost: 10 cents per milligram

Foria's Flow CBD Vape Pen

Why it made the list: Foria developed its Flow vape pen to allow consumers to vape clean CBD and experience a faster onset time. The vape contains sun-grown and broad-spectrum CBD, but no synthetic additives or carriers. A blend of terpenes and organic peppermint, cacao, and vanilla oils enhance the hemp's taste and effect.

The pen's ceramic core and glass cartridge heat the concentrate cleanly, preserving the natural flavors.

450 milligrams:$68 ($78 with  battery)

Cost: 15 cents per milligram, cartridge only

Gold Standard Vape Oil Cartridge

Why it made the list: Gold Standard vape cartridges contain broad-spectrum CBD distillate along with cannabidiolic acid (CBDA), cannabichromene (CBC), CBG, and cannabinol (CBN), enough other cannabinoids to provide a hefty dose of the entourage effect. The ceramic cartridge tip and coil heat evenly, perhaps inspiring many reviewers to say the vape delivers a smooth draw that's easy on the throat.  

The CBD distillate is free of THC and sourced and manufactured entirely in Oregon, a practice that company spokesperson Josephine Sze said helps guarantee high quality.

500 milligrams: $50

Cost: 10 cents per milligram


Feature image:  Prices for CBD are difficult to compare, but you can boil it down to cost per milligram. (Photo by Sharon McCutcheon on Unsplash)

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