Personally, my little bottles of CBD oil drops never last longer than a few months. A drop or two throughout the day can really start to add up. Regardless, I began to wonder this morning over a cup (plus, a couple of drops, of course), can this CBD oil ever go bad? And if it does, how long do I have before it’s no longer of any use.
Being my curious self, I went straight to Google to get down to the answer. After another restless night hopping from tab to tab and using a thesaurus to find multiple ways to phrase my search, I got the answers. I don’t want you to have to spend your entire night down this rabbit hole, so I’ve gathered up everything I found and put it a nice, little package for you. So, let’s get right down to it and answer our first question.
Can My CBD Oil Go Bad?
If you’re like me, then no. It’s just “gone” before it will ever go bad. However, if you are a little more frugal with your CBD oil or have a huge bottle of it stashed somewhere, then the answer is yes. CBD oil can go bad. As with most organic products, your CBD oil is going to have an expiration date. The reasons vary (I will touch on those in a bit), but the good news is there are ways to extend the shelf life and get it to last a little bit longer.
The average time it takes to go bad is somewhere between 12 and 24 months and that’s starting from the time it’s extracted from the plant. Depending on where you get your oil, there’s no way to tell how long it’s been sitting on the self in that dispensary. If you have anything that’s beyond the 24-month mark, there’s a chance your CBD oil will taste rancid and not be as effective. It’s recommended that you change your stock well before it gets to that point. But why does the oil spoil in the first place? I wondered too, so let’s take a look at what’s happening there.
Be sure to check out “From Hit to Kick: Time For CBD Oil to Take Effect” to see how long different kinds of CBD products take to have an effect on your body.
Why Does CBD Oil Go Bad?
The time it takes for CBD oil to become nasty and useless is largely due to conditions of storage. Under the proper conditions, the shelf-life can easily reach the 24 months before going bad. The best conditions for CBD oil are an area that’s cool, dry, and dark. With that said, here are the top things that degrade CBD oil:
- Exposure to sunlight — the sun’s UV rays will break down the cannabidiol compound.
- Heat Exposure – As with sunlight, heat will destroy the CBD compounds.
- Exposure to air – Air exposure can also speed the degradation of cannabinoids like CBD.
- Contamination – Moisture and air allowed in the container could lead to the growth of harmful germs. There’s also the chance that compounds from materials like plastic can seep into the oil.
- Time – No matter what you do, though, it will eventually go bad.
A good rule of thumb, if you want to know if your CBD oil is bad, is to smell it. If it’s rancid and unpleasant, then toss it out and go get something fresher. Now that we know why it goes bad, let’s go over some ways to keep your CBD oil as good as possible for as long as possible.
The Best Ways to Extend Your CBD Oil’s Shelf-Life
Our biggest foes here are time, light, heat, and air (which brings water and bacteria). Well, time will always beat us. That fight is an automatic loss, but we can do something about the other three. As stated above, proper storage is key. Let’s tackle each one by one and see how we keep our CBD oil for as long as we can.
Avoid exposure to l
Most containers will be dark-colored and made of glass. Still, they often let some light in and we want to keep it as dark as possible. Never store it somewhere there is direct sunlight. Keep it in a cabinet or drawer where it’s always dark. For added protection, you can wrap the container in aluminum foil.
Avoid exposure to heat
Keeping it out of the sunlight will also help with this. Never store in places where there is heat build-up like in a car or in a cabinet near a heat source. In fact, keeping it stored in the refrigerator is the best place. It’s both dark and cold—that’s a 2-for-1!
Avoid exposure to air
While you will have to open the container at some point to use the CBD oil, try to limit the time it is open. Always make sure the top is tightly secure and always use the top that came with the product. If you need to transfer to a different container, make sure the new has an air-tight seal around the lead.
Along with air exposure, you risk the chance of harmful agents and germs entering the CBD oil. This could be mold, bacteria, and other pollutants and could have negative impacts on your health. If it looks, tastes, or smells funny—throw it out!
Don’t miss out on “Everything You Should Know About CBD Tolerance Build-Up” for helpful info on tolerance build-up and what causes it.
Only Buy CBD When You Need It
A good way to avoid bad CBD oil is by not buying more than you need. This will also ensure you keep getting the freshest product. Keep track of how much you use or long one bottle lasts you, that way you know when to go get more before you run out. And unless you are buying for the entire household, there’s no reason to buy anything more than for personal use.
Ensuring your CBD oil is stored properly is the best way to maximize the freshness, potency, and longevity. Otherwise, improper methods can cost you a lot of CBD oil and money. Besides storage, another thing that plays a part in how long CBD oil lasts is its extraction process. Check out “Everything You Need To Know About CBD Distillate” to see how CBD is extracted to make distillate for vaping.
Is Bad CBD Oil Harmful?
As far as I can tell, it’s no – if it’s bad due to light or heat exposure. If it’s contaminated, then the answer could be yes. It could be infected with germs and other harmful bacteria. There’s not much research on the subject, but it’s better to be on the side of caution when consuming anything. Check out some of the benefits of CBD in “CBD Oil & Aspergers: Here’s What You Should Know“.
What Should I Do If My CBD Oil Is Bad?
First and foremost, get rid of it. That’s not much you can do to salvage. It may not necessarily be harmful, but it won’t be as effective and might not be as effective. If it’s been too long, the CBD could be completely broken down. You’d basically be using whatever oil they used to bind the CBD, which is most likely useless. Try to use all of it before the 6-month mark (but don’t overdo it). If you find that your product is lasting too long and going bad, then buy in smaller quantities.
Under proper storage conditions, you can perceive the potency and longevity of your CBD oil for around 2 years. However, as we’ve gone over, there are a plethora of factors that go into its shelf life and can lessen it.
Thank you for reading with us today! Be sure to check out more on the benefits of CBD by taking a look at “Can CBD Cream (Salve) be Used For Pain Relief?” or even “CBD and Dogs: Tips on Dosage & More“. Get the most out of your CBD oil!
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