Article Courtesy of Our Friends at The Ministry of Hemp

“I use this oil to get the benefit of CBDs for pain relief, it helps greatly.“

This was one of the top voted reviews of a hemp seed oil product on Amazon. Ironically, hemp seed oil doesn’t contain any CBD and pain relief is definitely not a benefit that it offers. Hemp seed oil is different from CBD oil, although they come from the same plant. As hemp grows in popularity, it will be important to distinguish the different types of hemp oil to help prevent customers from having a negative experience.

Simply put, it’s important to realize that there are different types of hemp oil and each one of them has different properties and benefits.

Hemp oils can be broken down into 3 different types:

  • Hemp Seed Oil (Unrefined and Refined)
  • CBD Hemp Oil
  • Hemp Essential Oil

All these oils are both extracted from the plant and processed in different ways. More importantly, all these oils offer different benefits. Understanding what properties each of these oils have will help you understand which hemp oil to shop for the next time you’re looking to try one.


Hemp seed oil comes from the seeds of the hemp plant. There are two different ways hemp seed oil can be processed:


This oil is green in color with a nutty flavor. Cold pressed hemp oil preserves hemp’s nutritious content, so it is often called “Nature’s most perfectly balanced oil”.

Unrefined, cold-pressed hemp oil is processed in minimal heat. This means that the oil has not been bleached or deodorized. A lot of unrefined oils are also called “virgin”, “extra virgin”, “raw”, or “pure”. This also means that unrefined oil has a much shorter shelf life and should be stored in the refrigerator once opened. The oil can also start smelling odd when it gets closer to its expiration date. When you hear someone complaining about the foul odor from a hemp seed oil they just bought, you can assume that the bottle was in storage for a while. In this case, we’d recommend you reach out to the manufacturer to ask for a refund and/or exchange.


Refined oil is clear and colorless. It doesn’t have much flavor and also lacks the natural vitamins and antioxidants that hemp is known for. That’s because this oil is typically used as ingredients for body care products, fuel, lubricants, and even plastics.

This oil has been bleached and deodorized. That is why refined oil has a much longer shelf life, and can be used in body care products. As Dr. Bronners, the biggest hemp soap maker, advocates hemp oil for its superfatting ingredients. They have been using hemp oil in their soaps for over 150 years for its amazing Essential Fatty Acid (EFA) content, which essentially means that the soap is smoother and a great moisturizer.


CBD (Cannabidiol) is a a non psychoactive cannabinoid derived from hemp plants mainly for medical use. CBD oils are known to provide safe and effective relief even for patients who suffer from seizures, epilepsy, or cancer. Even though CBD shows much promise, it is still a largely grey market that is still heavily regulated. With the recent legalization in certain states, it is one of the fastest growing applications in the hemp industry.

Since cultivation in the US is still in its infancy, most CBD oil is imported into the US and then examined for purity and quality before being sold commercially. The regulation behind the CBD oil products are still largely grey and customers should be very cautious of buying CBD products


Hemp essential oil comes from the upper leaves and flowers of the hemp plant. The leaves and flowers are then steam distilled to capture the pure essence of the plant. Pale yellow to light green in color with a a highly concentrated therapeutic aroma. It takes over fifty pounds to make 1 ounce of hemp essential oil. It is also one of the most expensive oils in the world – and contains no THC or CBD.

Hemp essential oil is well known for its essential oil aroma and therapeutic abilities on the central nervous system. It helps to release stress and relax the body. Its earthy, peppery and faintly sweet scent is alluring and sensual; blending perfectly with other fragrances to perfect the art of aromatherapy.

There aren’t many brands in the US that offer hemp essential oil, but there are a few unique brands that are using hemp essential oil in candles and massage oil to promote its therapeutic properties.


As hemp oil becomes increasingly popular among active people looking for a healthy supplement or patients considering a medical alternative, it’s important that we know which oil offers what benefits. Taking hemp seed oil with the hopes that it’ll help you “relax” or get rid of chronic pain can only be discouraging. At best, you’ll experience a few placebo effects.

So if you’re looking to try hemp oil, make sure to learn what type of hemp oil will best fit your needs. Proactively share your knowledge with your friends and family so they aren’t confused about the benefits that hemp oil offers. The sooner we can raise awareness of the differences in hemp oil, the quicker we can get rid of misleading reviews, such as the one that we’ve seen on Amazon.