When you’re dealing with a health concern like depression, anxiety, chronic pain, or seizures, the promise of relief can seem like a mirage. Product after product promises to perform miracles, and sometimes those claims are convincing enough to spark a bit of hope—could this one really work?

CBD Hacker's 2018 Guide to CBD Oil Drops
Click to view infographic

But when you get close enough to take a good look, all of those promises vanish into thin air.

If you have seen recent media coverage of CBD (short for cannabidiol), or if you know someone who uses it, you might be wondering whether CBD is different. That’s because researchers report encouraging results for a variety of conditions, anecdotal evidence tends to be glowing, and it’s generally considered to be very safe to use.

When you’re ready to choose a CBD product, though, you may face a new set of frustrations. It’s often difficult to understand what the products are, what they do, and which ones would be most effective for you.

And if that wasn’t confusing enough, there are also concerns about accurate labeling. We know from the FDA’s public disclosures that there are products out there that don’t contain the amount of CBD that is advertised. In fact, some don’t contain any CBD at all. But if you’re like the average consumer, you can’t spring for lab tests every time you want to try a new product.

All of this means that CBD consumers have few reliable sources for information about the products and companies in the market. And that’s where CBD Hacker comes in.

Choosing the 15 Best CBD Oil Drops

We set out to lend much-needed transparency to a complicated industry, starting with one of the most popular product formats: CBD oil drops.

These products might be marketed as tinctures, extracts or oils, depending on the producer. What they have in common is that they can all be taken sublingually. In other words, to take these products, you hold the drops under your tongue instead of swallowing them right away.

We chose products from a variety of companies. Some are very well-known, while others are newer arrivals in the market.

It was important to us to eliminate bias as much as possible, so we used a blind testing process to evaluate the products for taste, smell and appearance.

In addition, we chose five main categories to use in choosing the best CBD oil drops:

  • User experience
  • Customer service
  • Product
  • Purchase and shipping
  • Transparency

Most importantly, we sent samples of each product to a third-party lab for CBD and THC potency tests. While some variation is to be expected, no products that tested more than 15 percent below the advertised amount of CBD are included in this ranking.

Behind the Ranking

It All Starts with User Experience
A company could be offering the best product out there. But if the webstore crashes every time you try to make a purchase, then it doesn’t do you any good. That’s why we closely evaluated each company’s website for performance, design, and accessibility.
Customer Service is Key
We only want to recommend companies that stand by their customers. If you have a question or a problem with your CBD product, you should be able to count on quick, friendly, and knowledgeable customer care.

Which CBD Oils are Worth the Money?
The product category carried the greatest weight in our final scores. That’s because it included some of the most important questions for consumers:

  • Value: What is the price per milligram of CBD?
  • Flavor: Can I stand to take this regularly?
  • Accuracy: Did the lab tests match the labels?
Wait. Shipping Costs How Much?
Purchase and shipping are elements that can be invisible when done well, but they are extremely challenging when they don’t go right. Shipping fees, return policies, and professional packaging can make or break the your experience.
Which CBD Companies are Trustworthy?
Finally, in an industry that essentially regulates itself, transparency is massively important to building trust for consumers. For this category, we looked at the types of information that each company was willing to share. We also evaluated how easy it was to access that information.
Lab Results
The Good Lab, an independent lab based in Colorado, has a great breakdown of how to calculate a product’s potency in milligrams per milliliter.

Basically, you need to know the potency percentagedensity of the suspension, and volume of the liquid.

We got the percentage from our third-party lab tests. Then, we looked at the ingredient list for each product to find the density. The volume of the liquid was the easiest part of the calculation—it’s right there on the label.

We compared our potency results to the potency each company advertised for the product. Many of them didn’t specify how many milligrams per milliliter of CBD were in the product. In those cases we simply divided the total amount on the label by the volume of the product. For example, a label may advertise 300 milligrams of CBD in a 30 mL bottle. In this case, there should be 10 mg of CBD per mL.

In our scoring, the penalty for containing too little CBD was more harsh than the penalty for containing too much. We disqualified products that had a potency difference of -15% or more after rounding to the nearest whole number. In this case, the products we eliminated were:

  • CBD Drip’s RIX MIX 1500
  • Imbue’s Elevate*
  • Koi Naturals 3000*

Companymg/mL (Labeled)mg/mL (Lab Results)Difference
4 Corners33.3341.06+23.19%
Fab1012.00+20%
Pure Hemp Botanicals100117.76+17.76%
Nuleaf48.3356.12+16.12%
Charlotte's Web5055.80+11.60%
PlusCBD8.339.15+9.84%
Pure Spectrum16.6718.15+8.88%
Green Gorillla5053.99+7.98%
CBDistillery166.67178.59+7.15%
Green Roads5052.92+5.84%
Kat's Naturals5052.44+4.88%
Lazarus Naturals5052.08+4.16%
Populum33.3334.20+2.61%
Canna13.3313.60+2.03%
Receptra Naturals5050.63+1.26%
Bluebird Botanicals5050.60+1.20%
Medical Mary8.338.31-0.24%
Palmetto Harmony2018.15-9.25%
Hemplucid5044.89-10.22%
CBD Drip5042.42-15.16%
Im•bue8.336.33-24.01%
Koi5026.85-46.30%

*Note: both Koi and Imbue have disputed the lab’s results. We’re looking into it and will update this page with our findings.

Price Comparison
We know that price is one of the most important variables for CBD consumers. But it can be hard to figure out which CBD oils offer the best value. Products come in so many different sizes and potency options that comparison shopping can really feel overwhelming.

That’s why we decided to share our comparison table. Many companies offer a range of potency options, and we’ve found that the price per mg of CBD tends to go down with higher potency.

Not every product was the highest potency available, so these might not all be the best deals. And take note that we used the regular list price for each product—you might find a great sale. Our price calculator is a great tool for comparing two different products to see which sticker amount breaks down to be a better value.

CompanyProductSizeStrengthPrice per mg CBD
Lazarus NaturalsFlavorless High Potency Tincture60 mL3000 mg$0.04
CBDistilleryFull Spectrum Tincture30 mL5000 mg$0.05
Bluebird BotanicalsHemp Classic 6X30 mL1500 mg$0.07
KoiKoi Naturals60 mL3000 mg$0.08
Pure Hemp BotanicalsPure CBD Oil Full Spectrum Tincture30 mL3000 mg$0.09
Green GorilllaHemp & Olive CBD Oil60 mL3000 mg$0.09
Receptra NaturalsReceptra Health and Wellness30 mL1500 mg$0.09
Charlotte's WebHemp Extract Advanced30 mL1500 mg$0.10
CannaAnxiety30 mL400 mg$0.10
CBD DripRIX MIX30 mL1500 mg$0.10
Kat's NaturalsHeal30 mL1500 mg$0.11
Palmetto HarmonyFull Spectrum Hemp Oil100 mL2000 mg$0.11
NuleafFull Spectrum CBD Oil, High Grade Hemp Extract30 mL1450 mg$0.12
Green RoadsCBD Oil30 mL1500 mg$0.13
HemplucidHemplucid MCT30 mL1500 mg$0.13
Pure SpectrumHemp Oil Tincture30 mL500 mg$0.15
Medical MaryDaily CBD60 mL500 mg$0.16
PlusCBDCBD Oil Drops (Gold)30 mL250 mg$0.17
4 CornersOral Tincture30 mL1000 mg$0.20
FabPremium CBD Oil Drops30 mL300 mg$0.20
PopulumPremium Hemp Oil30 mL1000 mg$0.20
Im•bueIm•bue Elevated30 mL250 mg$0.27

A Note on Scoring

Keep in mind that, in order to rank these products, we scored each of them in relationship to all of the others. This means that several products ended up with a comparatively lower score in one category. But the product may still be superior to other CBD oils on the market.

The 15 Best CBD Oil Drops of 2018

  1. Bluebird Botanicals

    Hemp Classic 6x 30 mL
    User Experience- 97%
    Customer Service- 97%
    Purchase & Shipping- 97%
    Product- 100%
    Transparency- 100%
    98

    Ingredients: Hemp extract emulsified in organic hemp seed oil.

    Tasting Notes: Sweet, earthy, wet-leaf scent. Brisk bitterness with a green aftertaste.

    Full spectrum, ethanol extraction


    Bluebird Botanicals was named the #1 Hemp CBD Company at the 2016 Cannabist Awards, and it’s easy to see why. They combine exemplary transparency and high-quality products with responsive, caring customer service.

    The only catch? Their concentrated hemp extracts have a strong, woodsy flavor, which might be an acquired taste.


    Advantages
    • Local hemp
    • Great customer care
    • Public database of lab results
    Disadvantages
    • Strong flavor
    • International CC processor
    • Limited product line
    Regular Price: $109.95
  2. Lazarus Naturals

    Flavorless High Potency Tincture 60 mL
    User Experience- 94%
    Customer Service- 94%
    Purchase & Shipping- 97%
    Product- 93%
    Transparency- 100%
    95

    Ingredients: CBD isolate and fractionated coconut oil.

    Tasting Notes: Faint, pleasant aroma. Very mild coconut oil flavor.

    Isolate, ethanol extraction


    Demonstrating their belief that CBD should be accessible to all, employee-owned Lazarus Naturals offers the best value of all of the CBD products we evaluated: only $0.04 per milligram of CBD.

    In addition, they offer assistance programs to veterans, people with disabilities, and low-income households.

    And you can count on high-quality from their Colorado-grown CBD, because their website contains current lab results for every product.


    Advantages
    • Excellent value
    • Robust assistance programs
    • Up-to-date lab results
    Disadvantages
    • Strict return policy
    • Some customers complain about slow shipping
    • Hemp source subject to change
    Regular Price: $125.00
  3. CBDistillery

    Full Spectrum Tincture 30 mL/5,000 mg
    User Experience- 91%
    Customer Service- 97%
    Purchase & Shipping- 90%
    Product- 87%
    Transparency- 89%
    90

    Ingredients: Coconut MCT oil and CBD hemp oil.

    Tasting Notes: Bright, clear yellow liquid with big terpene aroma. Brisk, woody-citrus flavor.

    Full spectrum, CO2 extraction


    CBDistillery has a loyal following for their consistent products and excellent value.

    While they source their hemp from both domestic and international sources, a representative told me that when you purchase from the site, the hemp is grown domestically (usually in Colorado).

    CBDistillery is likely to have whatever type of CBD product your heart desires, because they offer a huge selection of products. Beware their strict return policy, though; after seven days, you’re out of luck.


    Advantages
    • Great value
    • Tons of product options
    • Speedy customer service
    Disadvantages
    • Very strict return policy
    • Website experience could improve
    • Domestic and international hemp
    Regular Price: $260.00
  4. Pure Hemp Botanicals

    Pure CBD Oil Full Spectrum Tincture 30 mL/3,000mg
    User Experience- 79%
    Customer Service- 100%
    Purchase & Shipping- 100%
    Product- 82%
    Transparency- 91%
    89

    Ingredients: Organic Hemp Seed Oil, CBD Oil Concentrate.

    Tasting Notes: Crisp herbal aroma. Bitter floral flavor, light body.

    Full spectrum, proprietary extraction method


    With a broad selection, value-conscious pricing and helpful customer service, Pure Hemp Botanicals is an excellent choice.

    In the sample our lab tested, though, the amount of CBD exceeded the label quantity by more than 15 percent. This is great if you want to get as much CBD as possible, but could be a problem for those who need precise doses.

    Those concerns could be offset by the fact that you can easily look up lab results with your product’s batch number. Just be warned: their website is infuriatingly slow.


    Advantages
    • Nice, natural flavor
    • Good prices
    • Local hemp
    Disadvantages
    • Slow website
    • Inaccurate labeling
    • Laggy checkout process
    Regular Price: $244.95
  5. CW Hemp (Charlotte’s Web)

    Hemp Extract Oil Advanced 30 mL, Mint Chocolate
    User Experience- 94%
    Customer Service- 97%
    Purchase & Shipping- 97%
    Product- 80%
    Transparency- 79%
    88

    Ingredients: Hemp extract, MCT fractionated coconut oil, organic chocolate mint flavor (organic sunflower oil, natural flavors).

    Tasting Notes: Smells like french toast with maple syrup. Tastes rich and spicy with black licorice notes.

    Full spectrum, isopropyl alcohol extraction


    In the crowded CBD market, Charlotte’s Web might be the brand with the most name recognition. They don’t have customers so much as they have fans, and they’ve become one of the most trusted CBD producers around.

    Perhaps because of this high profile, they were one of three companies targeted with FDA warning letters in 2017.

    In response, Charlotte’s Web has removed important info like CBD quantity from their website and product packaging, leaving new customers to guess at what they’re buying.


    Advantages
    • They grow their own hemp
    • Established brand
    • Great website experience
    Disadvantages
    • Slow shipping
    • CBD quantity isn’t advertised
    • Lack of transparency concerning specific products
    Regular Price: $149.99
  6. NuLeaf Naturals

    Full Spectrum CBD Oil 30 mL
    User Experience- 100%
    Customer Service- 88%
    Purchase & Shipping- 97%
    Product- 77%
    Transparency- 85%
    87

    Ingredients: USDA Certified Organic Hemp Oil, Full Spectrum Hemp Extract.

    Tasting Notes: Fruity-hoppy aroma. Nice, clean, citrus-earthy bitterness.

    Full spectrum, subcritical and supercritical CO2 extraction


    NuLeaf focuses on one product: a full-spectrum CBD tincture made from high-quality ingredients and local hemp.

    If precise dosing is a concern, though, be sure to request a lab report for your batch to make sure you know what’s in the bottle.

    While our test results were consistent with the amount on the label, a report the company provided from a recent batch detected CBD quantities of about 40% more than advertised! Along with their slim selection and higher prices, this caused a lower-than-expected score in the product category.


    Advantages
    • Local hemp
    • High-quality ingredients
    • Lots of assistance programs
    Disadvantages
    • Small selection
    • Inconsistent potency
    • Citrus-earthy bitterness (if you like hoppy beer, this might be a pro)
    Regular Price: $179.00
  7. Kat's Naturals

    Heal 30 mL
    User Experience- 76%
    Customer Service- 91%
    Purchase & Shipping- 97%
    Product- 83%
    Transparency- 88%
    86

    Ingredients: Critical CO2 extracted CBD from hemp, organic hemp seed oil, and peppermint essential oil.

    Tasting notes: Pleasant, refreshing peppermint flavor, like buttermint candy without the sugar.

    Isolate, CO2 extraction


    A relative newcomer on the CBD scene, Kat’s Naturals has quickly built a following for their locally sourced products.

    The company is devoted to creating high-quality, accurately labeled CBD products made from local Tennessee hemp.

    Even better, their peppermint-flavored Heal drops stand out from the crowd by actually tasting good.


    Advantages
    • Local hemp
    • Tastes great
    • Responsive customer service
    Disadvantages
    • Less established business
    • Website is light on info
    • Dense product descriptions
    Regular Price: $165.00
  8. Populum

    Premium Hemp Oil Advanced 1,000
    User Experience- 94%
    Customer Service- 97%
    Purchase & Shipping- 100%
    Product- 72%
    Transparency- 74%
    85

    Ingredients: Organic, cold-pressed, non-GMO hemp seed oil; grapeseed oil; organic, cold-pressed orange oil; organic, non-GMO liquid stevia; organic, non-GMO hemp oil.

    Tasting notes: Aroma is fruity. Very light body, clean orange flavor.

    Full spectrum, ethanol extraction and fractionalized distillation


    Populum’s design choices scream “premium brand,” and they claim to be the top-rated hemp oil in the USA.

    Who exactly declared them number one? That’s a mystery, but they do have a few things going for them. Like free shipping, a risk-free 30-day trial period, and CBD oil that tastes exactly like oranges.

    If that sounds good to you, Populum is a great choice—but only if you’re willing to pay premium prices. Their steep sticker prices caused their lower product score compared to the other oils we ranked.


    Advantages
    • Tastes great
    • High-quality ingredients
    • Solid customer service
    Disadvantages
    • High pricing
    • Limited selection
    • Lab results presented out of context
    Regular Price: $200
  9. Pure Spectrum

    Hemp Oil Tincture 500mg
    User Experience- 82%
    Customer Service- 97%
    Purchase & Shipping- 83%
    Product- 73%
    Transparency- 94%
    84

    Ingredients: Organic full-spectrum hemp CBD oil, organic nutraceutical-grade CBD isolate, and organic MCT oil.

    Tasting Notes: Colorless, clear, no smell. Very light, woodsy flavor.

    Full spectrum


    With their solid products, lightning-fast customer service, and generous return policy, Colorado’s Pure Spectrum clearly cares about customer satisfaction.

    The only hitch is that you definitely pay for the local hemp and high-quality ingredients.

    Their foam-filled cardboard packaging seems like overkill, but the company plans to introduce eco-friendly packaging in 2018.


    Advantages
    • Local hemp
    • Awesome customer service
    • Very light flavor
    Disadvantages
    • High price point
    • Website UX could improve
    • Excessive packaging
    Regular Price: $54.88
  10. 4 Corners Cannabis

    Oral Tincture 30 mL/1000 mg
    User Experience- 79%
    Customer Service- 91%
    Purchase & Shipping- 93%
    Product- 70%
    Transparency- 94%
    83

    Ingredients: MCT Oil, CBD Dominant hemp oil, Limonene (orange extract).

    Tasting Notes: Earthy, mellow aroma. Fruity flavor with bitter finish.

    Full spectrum, ethanol extraction


    Because they grow their own hemp, Colorado-based 4 Corners Cannabis controls everything from the seed to the final product.

    And their dedication shows in their CBD oils; just ask their devoted community (you can find them in a Facebook group created specifically for customers).

    Our sample exceeded the amount of CBD on the label by more than 15 percent, though, which could be bad news if you need precise doses.


    Advantages
    • It doesn’t get more local than this
    • Great customer care
    • They control every step of manufacturing
    Disadvantages
    • Higher prices
    • Poor website experience
    • Inconsistent labeling
    Regular Price: $200.00
  11. Hemplucid

    Hemplucid MCT 30 mL/1,500 mg
    User Experience- 88%
    Customer Service- 82%
    Purchase & Shipping- 90%
    Product- 68%
    Transparency- 94%
    82

    Ingredients: Whole-Plant™ CBD, MCT fractionated coconut oil.

    Tasting notes: Looks like orange juice, with a woody aroma. Light body, brisk herbal bitterness.

    Full spectrum, subcritical CO2 extraction


    Hemplucid is one of the newest kids on the CBD block, with less than a year under their belts. In that time, they’ve already introduced a variety of products and built a reputation for great quality.

    Their customer service rep responded on live chat in minutes, and they’re super communicative on social media.

    Hemplucid did take a hit in our product category, though. While the sample we tested was within our limit for inclusion in this ranking, they did have about 10 percent less CBD than indicated on the label.


    Advantages
    • Rapid customer service
    • Free shipping
    • Good reputation
    Disadvantages
    • Higher pricing
    • Hard to find info on website
    • Not as established
    Regular Price: $199.95
  12. Green Gorilla

    Hemp & Olive Pure CBD Oil 60 mL 3,000 mg
    User Experience- 82%
    Customer Service- 91%
    Purchase & Shipping- 86%
    Product- 80%
    Transparency- 68%
    81

    Ingredients: Organic extra virgin olive oil, organic cannabidiol hemp oil.

    Tasting Notes: Smells and tastes like olive oil; very mild.

    Isolate, proprietary extraction method.


    Green Gorilla uses a base of high-quality California olive oil for their full-spectrum and CBD isolate products. The resulting CBD oil has a mild, pleasant flavor and is offered at a great price point.

    One quirk: Green Gorilla bucks the industry trends by packaging their oils in a spray bottle, rather than the usual eyedropper lid.


    Advantages
    • Good value
    • Pleasant, mild flavor
    • Quality olive oil base
    Disadvantages
    • Patchy customer service
    • Slower website
    • Strict return policy
    Regular Price: $279.99
  13. Palmetto Harmony

    Cannabinoid-Rich Hemp Extract 100 mL
    User Experience- 85%
    Customer Service- 76%
    Purchase & Shipping- 83%
    Product- 73%
    Transparency- 88%
    80

    Ingredients: Hemp oil, MCT.

    Tasting Notes: Medium body, tastes like olive oil and cannabis. Flavor is light, no bad aftertaste.

    Full spectrum, proprietary extraction (directly into carrier oil using heat & pressure)


    Palmetto Harmony is based in South Carolina, and they get their hemp from nearby Kentucky.

    Their customers sing their praises for offering a range of high-quality CBD products, including a few unusual items, like transdermal patches.

    Their oils are all lower-potency, probably because many of their products are made for children who can benefit from CBD and need lower doses.


    Advantages
    • Regionally sourced hemp
    • Loyal customer base
    • Light flavor for full-spectrum CBD
    Disadvantages
    • Slow customer service
    • Strict return policy
    • Only offers low potency products
    Regular Price: $220.00
  14. Fab

    Premium CBD Oil Drops 30mL/300mg, Natural Flavor
    User Experience- 97%
    Customer Service- 97%
    Purchase & Shipping- 93%
    Product- 57%
    Transparency- 74%
    80

    Ingredients: Hemp Extract, MCT Oil.

    Tasting Notes: Hoppy aroma with a pleasantly bitter flavor.

    Full spectrum, hypercritical CO2 extraction


    Fab is another newcomer to the CBD market, although their founding team comes from the pharmaceutical, health, fitness, and supplement industries.

    With a pleasant flavor and high-quality ingredients, this CBD oil is a solid choice.

    Fab took a hit in our product category because of their higher prices, though. At about $0.20 per milligram of CBD, this was among the most expensive products we tested.


    Advantages
    • Nice taste with different flavor options
    • Domestic hemp from Colorado
    • Responsive customer service
    Disadvantages
    • High prices
    • Inaccurate labeling (but in the customer’s favor)
    • Less established company
    Regular Price: $59.00
  15. Receptra Naturals

    Active Lifestyle Pro
    User Experience- 74%
    Customer Service- 74%
    Purchase & Shipping- 86%
    Product- 77%
    Transparency- 88%
    79

    Ingredients: MCT Oil, Sunflower Oil, Organic Natural Flavors.

    Tasting notes: Sweet herbal smell, almost like cough syrup. Tastes medicinal.

    Isolate, supercritical CO2 extraction


    Receptra’s website has a dual identity. First, it’s all calming blues and greens, but if you click on “MMA,” you land in the mixed martial art section. There, you’ll find many, many photos of tough people with serious muscles.

    Will Receptra give you a six pack? We can’t answer that question.

    But we can tell you that they offer solid products at a good price point, and their generous return policy takes the risk out of ordering from them.


    Advantages
    • Family-farmed, local hemp
    • Hand-picked flowers
    • May or may not give you ripped abs
    Disadvantages
    • Lackluster website
    • Medicinal flavor
    • Styrofoam packing peanuts
    Regular Price: $149.99
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The Author

Meg Kramer

Meg Kramer

Meg Kramer is the Managing Editor of CBD Hacker. She's a writer and editor who has covered topics in science, health, and education.

When she's not writing about CBD, you can find her playing with her dogs or perfecting her bagel recipe.