When finding the right CBD product for you, we always recommend our customers start by finding the right brand. Because of all the recent interest swirling around the hemp and cannabis industry, there are many brands to choose from. But what sets the bad brands from the good ones – and the good ones from the great?
Two of the most notable brands on the market are NuLeaf Naturals and Charlotte’s Web. Many of our customers will already be familiar with one or both of these pioneering brands, as they are among some of our best-sellers. But what makes them different? What sets them apart from other CBD brands and from each other?
In this article, we’ll dive in and introduce you to two of the most popular CBD brands on the market and weigh the pros and cons between them. We’ll also showcase some of their most popular products.
But first, we need a little rudimentary understanding of what CBD is.
What Is CBD?
Short for cannabidiol, CBD is a chemical compound native to hemp and cannabis plants. These compounds are called cannabinoids. Other well-known cannabinoids include CBG, CBC, CBN, and the psychoactive THC. Cannabinoids interact with your body’s endocannabinoid system (ECS). This system is a network of receptors spanning different systems and organs in your body. The ECS helps regulate essential functions like sleep, mood, appetite, and energy levels.
When you take a CBD product, the cannabinoids engage these receptors and boost their performance, leading to various wellness benefits.
An Overview of NuLeaf Naturals
Based in Colorado’s capital, NuLeaf Naturals has been a staple in the hemp industry since its inception in 2014. NuLeaf grows their high-quality hemp on select farms in Colorado, cultivating their buds into a proprietary, whole-plant extract. This whole-plant extract is what sets NuLeaf apart from other brands. This speciality blend contains varying amounts of diverse cannabinoids, and a host of aromatic compounds, like terpenes and flavonoids.
NuLeaf offers a wide range of products – formulated with various all-star cannabinoids. They’ve also dipped their toes into the world of alternative cannabinoids by recently debuting delta-8 and delta-9 THC products.
Key Difference: Reliance on Full-Spectrum CBD
Compared to other brands, NuLeaf’s key difference is their reliance on full-spectrum CBD. Think of full-spectrum CBD as a chemical snapshot of the hemp plant. It has hemp’s rich aromatic compounds and its diverse cannabinoid profile, which includes hemp’s naturally low THC levels. While other cannabis plants, like marijuana, can have THC levels reach 30%, hemp inherently has low THC percentages – around 0.3% THC.
When cultivators make full-spectrum CBD, they leave these trace amounts of THC alone, keeping the cannabinoid profile complete. This can lead to a stronger CBD experience – a phenomenon known as the Entourage Effect. The Entourage Effect describes when more than one cannabinoid interacts with your ECS receptors simultaneously, synergistically boosting the cannabinoids’ effects on your body. So, your CBD experience can feel more profound with full-spectrum CBD instead of broad-spectrum CBD or CBD isolate, which both have an incomplete cannabinoid profile.
NuLeaf’s Top-Selling Products
Now, let’s look at some of our customers’ favorite NuLeaf products!
Full-Spectrum Whole Plant Extract CBD Tincture
First, we have NuLeaf’s classic Full-Spectrum Whole Plant CBD Tincture. This is perhaps the most ideal CBD product. If you didn’t know, humans have been using CBD for thousands of years, and most of that time, they’ve been doing so with tinctures.
Tinctures are highly viscous and are taken sublingually (under your tongue.) Here, the cells in your mouth absorb the cannabinoids and filter them into your bloodstream, where they go on to engage your ECS receptors.
NuLeaf infuses their proprietary whole-plant extract into their tinctures, creating an oil rich in cannabinoids and other hemp-derived compounds. Their Full-Spectrum Whole Plant CBD Tincture comes in bottles that range from 5mL to 100mL, carrying 60mg CBD per serving.
CBD:CBN Sleep Gummies
Another popular product we routinely point customers to NuLeaf’s CBD:CBN Sleep Gummies. Cannabinol (CBN) is one of the newest cannabinoids to find its place in the spotlight. CBN is known for its non-psychoactive calming, relaxing effects on the mind and body – so much so it’s been nicknamed “the ultimate relaxation cannabinoid.”
These CBD:CBN Sleep Gummies come in mixed berry or goji berry flavors. They come packed with 30mg CBD and 10mg CBN per serving. If you plan on using these for sleep support, take a serving a few hours before bed. This will give the cannabinoids time to filter and absorb into your digestive system, where they’ll go on to elicit their calming effects.
Full-Spectrum CBG Capsules
Another popular cannabinoid taking the hemp market by storm is cannabigerol (CBG). CBG is unique because it is the chemical precursor to CBD and THC. Many companies use CBG for its non-psychoactive, energizing effects on the mind and body. NuLeaf has a couple of CBG products, but their most popular one is their CBG capsules.
NuLeaf’s CBG Capsules come with 30mg of full-spectrum CBG per serving, contain organic virgin hemp seed oil, and are perfect for enjoying CBG’s unique effects throughout your day!
Pros of NuLeaf Naturals
- Uses organic hemp
- Wide range of products
- Grown on select farms in Colorado
- Uses CO2 Extraction
- Uses whole plant extract
Cons of NuLeaf Naturals
- Slightly more expensive than other brands
- Only offers full-spectrum CBD products
An Overview of Charlotte’s Web
Like NuLeaf, Charlotte’s Web was founded in 2014 and has been at the forefront of the hemp industry, leading the way. Their mission is (and has always been) to unleash the healing powers of botanicals with compassion and science. They offer a wide range of products made with various natural ingredients and cannabinoids.
Their unique blend and formulas highlight hemp’s natural benefits and showcase CBD’s notable qualities. Unlike NuLeaf, though, Charlotte’s Web makes their products from more than just full-spectrum CBD.
Key Difference: Uses Various Forms of CBD
In addition to full-spectrum CBD, there are two other types of CBD – broad-spectrum CBD and CBD isolate. Broad-spectrum CBD is a type of CBD that contains undetectable levels of THC. While all the other organic compounds remain intact, THC percentages have been whittled down significantly.
CBD isolate, on the other hand, offers a CBD-exclusive experience. CBD isolate contains 99% CBD. When cultivators make CBD isolate, they whittle away all other organic compounds, leaving behind only CBD. This type of CBD is perfect for those who want to avoid additional cannabinoids and focus their experience on just CBD.
From tinctures to gummies to topicals, Charlotte’s Web is known for their wide selection of CBD products. Here are three of our customers’ favorites!
Hemp Extract Sleep Raspberry CBD Gummies
First, we have their Hemp Extract Sleep Raspberry CBD Gummies. These sleep gummies come with natural ingredients like melatonin to complement CBD’s therapeutic effects on the body. With 10mg of full-spectrum CBD per serving, these gummies offer an effective dose of hemp-derived cannabinoids. Their natural raspberry flavor gives them a simply sweet taste that’s perfect right before bed.
Nourishing Unscented CBD Cream
Charlotte’s Web also has one of the best CBD topicals on the market – their Nourishing Unscented CBD Cream. Topicals are unlike other CBD products. CBD edibles, like gummies and capsules, pass through your digestive system before reaching your bloodstream and engaging your ECS receptors. Topical CBD products are applied locally on sore muscles or stiff joints. The cannabinoids from topicals absorb through the skin and into the underlying tissue, completely bypassing the bloodstream.
So, with topicals like this one from Charlotte’s Web, you can direct where you’d like to feel CBD’s soothing benefits. This Nourishing CBD Cream is a crafted botanical blend that includes vitamin B5, aloe, coconut oil, arnica, and shea butter – all of which complement CBD’s effects on the body.
Mango CBD Gummies – THC Free
Last, we have Charlotte’s Web’s Mango CBD Gummies made with broad-spectrum CBD. These gummies have 15mg of CBD each and are incredibly delicious. Because they’re edibles, these gummies take a while to absorb and metabolize into the bloodstream, so don’t expect instant effects. But, like all CBD edibles, these gummies provide long-lasting effects.
Pros of Charlotte’s Web
- Perhaps the most famous CBD brand
- Major sport sponsorships
- Effective formulas
- Wide range of products
Cons of Charlotte’s Web
- No THC-friendly options
NuLeaf Naturals vs Charlotte’s Web
So, what are the significant differences between these two heavyweights?
Both brands have a long list of products ranging from gummies to tinctures to topicals. But the main difference between these two brands is their formulas. While NuLeaf relies solely on full-spectrum CBD oil, Charlotte’s Web offers a balanced menu of full-spectrum and broad-spectrum CBD products. Some customers really don’t love encountering even trace levels of THC. So, broad-spectrum CBD is best for them.
There are many ways to pull CBD and other cannabinoids away from their organic dwelling places in the hemp plant. Many of these extraction methods rely on heavy solvents like ethanol and butane. While these measures get the job done, they do so at the risk of the customer. Heavy solvents can leave harmful or toxic chemicals in the finished product, harming the user’s health.
Both NuLeaf Naturals and Charlotte’s Web rely on a CO2 extraction method. CO2 helps strip the cannabinoids from other organic molecules but doesn’t leave harmful toxins behind.
Third-Party Lab Testing
Last, we grade by checking each CBD company’s third-party lab results. This exists as a Certificate of Analysis (COA) detailing the exact ingredients found in the product. This lab report will show whether the hemp was grown around heavy metals or low-quality soil. It will also show if any heavy solvents exist in the finished product. Updated COAs are a must for any legitimate CBD brand.
Conclusion: Who’s The Winner?
So, both companies are tied. Well, the final factor still has to be considered. What is that final factor?
It all comes down to your own personal preferences and budget! Both brands are incredible and routinely debut high-quality products known for their purity and potency. So, you can’t go wrong with either. But it’s best to weigh your own preferences, needs, and wants before deciding on a CBD product.
So, which one has your vote? NuLeaf or Charlotte’s Web? Good news is: you can’t go wrong with either!