Hemp vs Marijuana: The Difference Explained

weedsmart_image_Hemp vs Marijuana

The difference between hemp and marijuana often needs to be explained, especially with so much conflicting information out there. Although hemp and marijuana are both products of cannabis plants, there are some significant differences between the two. In the past, hemp was sometimes used as a term to colloquially refer to marijuana, but it’s important to note the distinction.

Even though they both come from the same species of plant, they’re used for very different things. Hemp is not a drug, although it does contain high levels of CBD. Meanwhile, marijuana is used for the sensational high it can give you. But there’s a lot more to it than that. Here’s a guide to hemp vs marijuana and the difference explained.

What is Hemp?

You can find hemp in all kinds of products, and you may even hear it referred to as industrial hemp. Simply put, hemp is one of the many strains of cannabis sativa. Hemp growers grow large quantities of hemp for use in things like clothing, jewelry, food supplements, and building materials. However, unlike marijuana, hemp does not get you high.

Many manufacturers use hemp extracts for products such as CBD Oils, Edibles, Topicals, and more. But although CBD is found in marijuana, hemp does not give you the same effects marijuana does. Despite its high levels of CBD, hemp only contains small amounts of THC- the psychoactive chemical responsible for the high you get from marijuana. As such, hemp products are free from intoxicating effects.

With that said, hemp-based CBD products are highly valuable for many reasons. In countries where marijuana is still illegal, these products are used as a safe and natural alternative to medical cannabis. CBD products are said to have all kinds of benefits, such as relieving pain and reducing anxiety. CBD products can come from both hemp and marijuana, hence why there’s often confusion between the two.

What is Marijuana

What is Marijuana?

Marijuana refers to the dry plant matter obtained from cannabis sativa and cannabis indica plants that are high in THC. THC is a psychoactive substance known for delivering all kinds of effects. It makes users feel happy, euphoric, relaxed, and free of stress and pain. As such, marijuana is often used for both medical and recreational purposes.

Marijuana is legal all over Canada, although it’s still illegal in many parts of the world. Growers often cultivate marijuana plants high in THC in order to produce the best effects. Many marijuana strains are also high in CBD, which helps give users more of the medical benefits of cannabis.

You may often hear marijuana also referred to as weed or cannabis. You can buy all kinds of marijuana products extracted from indica, sativa, and hybrid plants. You can also buy other products extracted from marijuana such as edibles, concentrates, and oils which contain high levels of THC.

Hemp vs Marijuana: The Difference Explained

Both hemp and marijuana are legal in Canada, but the things they’re used for are very different. Unlike marijuana, hemp has no psychoactive properties, and you can find it in all kinds of products from CBD Oil to building materials. Marijuana is a substance often used for the intense psychoactive high it delivers.

Despite being from the same species of plants as hemp plants, these plants generally grow differently and contain different levels of cannabinoids, hence the effects they produce. Cannabinoids are the chemical compounds in cannabis plants responsible for the effects they give. Hemp plants are much higher in CBD with only small amounts of THC. Meanwhile, plants used for marijuana have much higher levels of THC, although they can also contain high amounts of CBD.

The high levels of THC are the reason why marijuana gets you high whereas hemp or CBD products are used purely for medical purposes. It’s also the reason why hemp is legal in many parts of the world where marijuana is still illegal. In Canada, you can use both hemp and marijuana products legally and there are many ways to do so.

Hemp vs Marijuana Difference

How to Use Hemp/CBD

Hemp is used in all kinds of products. For instance, you can use Hemp Seed Oil for cooking and find hemp jewelry and clothes. However, consumers looking for alternatives to cannabis often look for CBD products. 

CBD products can be derived from hemp or cannabis, but both work in the same way. For instance, many users use CBD Tincture to get the medical benefits of cannabidiol. You use it by applying the tincture under your tongue and holding it there for up to two minutes to absorb the CBD into your body.

Other options include CBD Pills, CBD Vape Pens, and CBD Jellies, all of which make for great ways to consume CBD. There are also many other CBD products available to buy online for delivery.

How to Use Marijuana

When people think of marijuana, they usually think of cannabis flower, otherwise known as weed. However, there are now many products made using marijuana extracts which make for great alternatives. Here are some of the best ways to get the effects of marijuana.

Flower – Cannabis flower is still the most common way to use marijuana. You can grind it and add it to a joint, bong or pipe to smoke it. Many vape pens and vaporizers also allow you to heat up and inhale flower product for smooth, smokeless vapor. It comes in many different strains and users have a massive selection to choose from.

Concentrates – Cannabis concentrates are marijuana extracts with high levels of THC, making for a more powerful high. Products such as hash, shatter, and wax suit users who want stronger effects in a unique form. Concentrates are usually used with a dab rig or vaporizer, although you can also mix them into a joint or bowl with some weed.

Edibles – Marijuana edibles give you an exceptionally strong high that can last for up to 12 hours. They take a couple of hours to kick in but when they do, you’ll be treated to some of the most potent effects of THC. They come in many forms such as gummies, chocolate bars, and brownies.

How to Use Marijuana


Hemp and marijuana may both come from cannabis plants, but they differ significantly in their uses and effects. If you’re looking to get high, then you’ll need to use marijuana products for the effects of THC. Hemp contains only trace amounts of THC but does contain a wealth of cannabidiol which makes it ideal to use for products such as CBD Tinctures, Edibles, and Vapes. Both are legal to use and both can be highly enjoyable and beneficial.

One thought on “Hemp vs Marijuana: The Difference Explained

  1. Pingback: 9 Etiquette Tips for Smoking Marijuana with Friends - WeedSmart

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