An Insider's Guide to CBD Cost and Price Comparisons, Averages, and How to Save
It's a good news-bad news deal.
Good news is that you're getting relief from anxiety from CBD which matches what the research says (check out CBD and anxiety research here).
The bad news is that you have to afford it now.
There are so many elements to this question of cost that we're going to get into.
The ultimate goal is to get the most affordable CBD with the best quality.
We're going to give a look behind the curtain so you can really analyze any CBD product and make a good decision on cost.
Get ready to get angry!
So much of the market is extremely overpriced as you'll find out.
We're talking multiples of cost.
It's as if one gallon of milk is $3.99 and a similar gallon is $39.99.
You'll see in our CBD price comparison below.
These are the areas we'll cover:
- How to compare price with CBD
- Price per mg of CBD price comparison
- How the type of CBD affects pricing
- Be careful of pricing that's too good
- Why is CBD so expensive
- CBD price comparison
- CBD price calculator
- Average CBD price for 2020
- Which way is CBD pricing going (good news here)
- Tricks to reduce the cost of CBD
We have to be able to afford this stuff. Let's see if we can use the information to avoid paying too much (the norm unfortunately).
How to compare price with CBD
First, we're going to focus on CBD oils.
Generally, they are the lowest option to take CBD versus gummies, vapes, edibles, etc.
Most of the research is pointing to higher levels (160 for sleep, 300 mg for neurogenesis, etc) and we're not going to get there with 25 mg gummies.
We'll focus on 30 ml (1 ounce approximately) since that's a standard form factor across brands.
We're less concerned with flavors although we'd rather have just clean CBD and a base oil.
Any additive is just one more thing for the histamine system to react to. That's the whole reason we focus on CBD Isolate (see CBD isolate versus full spectrum).
We'll try to compare apples and apples (isolate to isolate if available).
So how do we really compare pricing?
Brands have so many different ways to sell and market different products.
Concentrated. Phytocannabinoids. Triple strength. Marketing types gone wild!
To cut through all the nonsense, we want to focus on just one thing.
Cost per mg of CBD.
After all, there are cheaper ways to buy MCT oil, hemp oil, or olive oil. By factors of 100.
What we're really paying for is the CBD isolate itself. THAT'S what we reference in dozens of NIH studies throughout our site.
CBD isolate. How much CBD. How much cost per mg of CBD.
Let's look at how to do that.
All of a sudden, the smokescreen comes down for all the products.
Price per mg of CBD price comparison
How do we calculate the cost per mg of CBD?
It's not too bad...just a bit of calculus.
Assuming our 30 ml (1 ounce) bottle.
If we have a 1000 total mgs in the bottle (the brand better specify total mg of CBD or run, don't walk).
If the price is $60, we would divide 60 (price) by 1000 (mg of CBD).
We get 6 cents (.06) per mg.
Total bottle price DIVIDED BY Total MG of CBD in bottle
Now, no one can hide. And they've been hiding quite a bit.
Again, wait till you see what some of the big brands are charging.
Let's first level the playing field and set some benchmarks for the quality of CBD.
How the type of CBD affects pricing
First, there's a lot of shady marketing out there in the market.
Some brands (even big ones) won't even specify mgs of CBD.
They'll use terms like phytocannabinoids. We've even diols listed on the label.
They may also say "hemp extract" or other more general terminology.
We once enquired with one of the largest brands on the market (huge) exactly how much CBD was in their product since it just said hemp extract.
They couldn't (or wouldn't) specify.
Be wary of companies selling hemp oil with the "shine" of CBD's research.
Hemp oil should be about the same cost as olive oil you pour on your salad.
Maybe pour is too aggressive. Drizzle.
We did a full estimate in our CBD oil versus hemp oil review and found that each dropper (there's about 30 in a 1-ounce bottle) probably had about 8 mgs of CBD.
That's about 240 mg per bottle.
Good luck with that!
The crazy part is how much they were charging. If I recall, it was about $80/bottle.
If we use our formula above, that's 80/240 or 33 cents per mg of CBD. Versus the 6 cents we looked at above.
Our 6000 mg bottle is priced around 3 cents per mg.
That's 10 times the amount!
Maybe, more importantly, we'll never hit the levels shown in research to actually make a difference.
That brand sells millions of bottles a year!
Then, there's the full spectrum versus CBD isolate question.
All the research is on CBD Isolate (check out master pages here for anxiety or here for perimenopause as just a sampling).
Full-spectrum is touted as being better but we make the decision based on research.
Plus, 40-60% of the population has allergy or histamine issues which may not react well to all that plant material.
We found that out the hard way when we started this process and it's reflected in many of our reviews.
Any brand worth considering should provide 3rd party testing to show levels of cannabinoids including CBD.
We provide ours at the top of each page and most legitimate brands will do the same.
There's are 100's out there that don't however. That's a bad sign.
Unfortunately, the market is not regulated and resembles the wild west.
We'll research other brands that visitors send to us and everyone and their mother has a CBD brand these days.
It's pretty wild to see what we find. Most of this should drop out over time but in the meantime, you have to be vigilant.
3rd party testing is the best protection on that front.
Let's look at what to avoid first.
Be careful of CBD pricing that's too good
Most of the chicanery is on the upside...companies (some big and legitimate) overcharging for CBD.
There's also plenty of crap products out there.
We've covered over 1 million words and 100's of NIH studies regarding CBD.
There's a lot of interesting information and this draws plenty of bogus products with little if any CBD.
We covered this issue in detail at our Can you buy CBD on amazon review.
The answer is NO!
Amazon doesn't allow CBD products but that doesn't stop lots of companies from selling something there with the aura of CBD.
They might even talk about 3000 mgs but they usually mean hemp oil at best.
This basically just means it is all hemp oil. The full 30 ml bottle.
That's similar to the company above that advertises 80 mg of phytocannabinoids per dropper which is likely close to 250 mg of CBD at best.
The lowest price we have seen for verified and 3rd party tested CBD products is generally between 3-6 cents per mg of CBD at the time of this writing.
That's why we purposely price our CBD in that range.
Research is pointing to levels at 300 mg for neurogenesis and people won't be able to afford that with prices at 10x's the amount above.
Before we get into the comparison….why is it so expensive?
Why is CBD so expensive
Greed. Maybe overhead. But basically greed.
The base oil itself is pretty cheap (hemp, olive, or MCT oil).
The cost itself is really driven by:
- Containing high quality (organically grown at an FDA registered farm) CBD
- 3rd party tested free of contaminants (THC, heavy metals, solvents, bacteria, mold, etc)
It's a process to reduce down hemp biomass to a final product of just CBD isolate.
That's the cost.
That being said, it doesn't explain the many multiples that many brands are charging.
There's no real excuse for that other than they are taking advantage of the buzz around the product.
Let's look at what some of the biggest brands are charging right now.
CBD price comparison
We'll take a current snapshot of some of the biggest brands on the market. We won't list their names but provide the relevant info:
- Type of product - full spectrum or Isolate
- Quantity - 30 ml, 1 ounce, etc
- Mg of CBD (try to find around 2K as a benchmark)
- Cost per bottle
- Cost per mg of CBD
The final piece is the important piece as we discussed above.
Here's the chart:
So...those are some of the biggest brands on the market for legitimate CBD.
Look at the price discrepancy...
5 cents per mg versus 48 cents per mg.
Almost 10 fold!
It can actually get much worse for bogus products out there sold by the 1000's.
Almost no CBD at $40-60 bottle.
So what if we're comparing another product not listed here?
CBD price calculator
We're actually looking at a widget to compare CBD pricing.
Here's our benchmark:
- 1000 mg of CBD isolate - 5.8 cents per mg (before discounts)
- 2000 mg of CBD isolate - 4.9 cents per mg (before discounts)
- 6000 mg of CBD isolate - 3.3 cents per mg (before discounts)
We typically have discounts ranging from 10% (reviews) to 20% (referrals) to even 30% (any and every holiday we can find).
We do this because we want people to be able to afford the benefits that research is showing for CBD.
So, what's our workaround calculator for any other CBD bottle.
Take the total price fo the bottle and divide by the total # of mg in the bottle:
Total mg of CBD
That's your cost per mg of CBD! You can plug it right into Google bar and it will give you the result.
It will usually look something like: 0.033
That's 3 cents!
Now, make your that brand actually shows "mgs of CBD" itself and some bogus name like "diols" or phytocannabinoids. Otherwise, you're likely way overpaying.
Based on our comparison, what's the average CBD price in 2020?
Average CBD price for 2020
Looking at the 8 biggest brands on the market, the average cost of CBD is
The low range is 3.3 cents (6000 mg CBD isolate)
The high range is
This wide discrepancy points to an opaque market.
The buyer isn't yet educated on what they should be paying and certain suppliers are taking advantage of this lack of knowledge.
The whole reason we wrote this is to educate people so they are not taken advantage of.
When we first started this journey, we bought 3-4 of the biggest CBD brands and paid many times more than we should have.
We just didn't know any better and it's one of those things you learn with time.
Hopefully, we just shortened that learning curve.
What about the future...what's coming for CBD pricing?
Which way is CBD pricing going (good news here)
Just this year (2020), there's a bumper crop of industrial hemp.
This has dropped the bulk pricing quite a bit for the raw biomass.
It still has to be processed and tested which carries a similar cost to before but we expect this to continue as farmers have also rushed in (maybe too quickly for their sakes) to producing industrial hemp (cannabis with less than .3% THC).
Our CBD has zero THC by the way since research is pointing to almost opposite effects between CBD and THC (See CBD versus THC here).
We've decided to add more discount options:
- Subscriptions - 10%
- Reviews - 10% per review (up to 30% total)
- Referrals - 20% for both parties
- Holidays - 30%
With these added, it rewards those who really need high levels of CBD on a consistent basis.
Pricing may drop as well towards 2021 and going forward.
Are there ways to reduce the cost of the CBD you use until pricing comes down? Like 4x's more.
Tricks to reduce the cost of CBD
Here are ways we can maximize the effects of CBD to hopefully save on cost:
- Take after meals
- Hold under tongue up to 60 seconds (the longer, the better)
As soon as you take CBD, the liver is busy trying to break it down.
If you take CBD after eating, ideally with fat in it, the liver is busy with that and more CBD will get through the gauntlet and stay in your system for longer.
The bigger tip is to hold it under your tongue up to 60 seconds.
There's a gland there (sublingual gland) which allows direct absorption into the bloodstream.
Again, anything that has to go through the digestive system will see very little actually get through to the bloodstream.
Research has shown that the tongue trick can increase bioavailability up to 4x's.
- That's the equivalent of reducing the cost of your CBD by 75%!
- We covered this at our How to reduce CBD cost by 75% here.
We'll keep an eye on the market for changes in CBD pricing and always aim to be at the low end while maintaining high-quality CBD with 3rd party testing available on every page.
Always work with a doctor or naturopath with any supplement!
The information provided here is not intended to treat an illness or substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment from a qualified healthcare provider.