If you’re searching for a concentrated cannabis product that doesn’t come with a side of solvents or other potentially harmful chemicals, look no further than rosin.
But what is rosin? Why is it so great? And how can you use once you get your hands on some?
In this ultimate guide for cannabis enthusiasts, the all-things-cannabis experts at Honest Marijuana answer those questions and tell you everything you need to know about this excellent extract.
What Is Rosin?
Outside of cannabis culture, rosin is a solid form of resin — think pine sap — used in a wide variety of athletic, musical, and industrial endeavors.
You can use this rosin for everything from adding grip to a violin bow to reducing slippage while dancing to making ink and soap.
From the canna-enthusiast’s perspective, rosin is the oil/resin of the trichomes that cover the surface of the marijuana plant.
Through a simple process we’ll describe later, you can “squeeze” this oil out of the bud and let it harden to produce rosin of your own.
Why Is Rosin So Great?
One of the main reasons rosin is in demand these days is that producers can extract it from the plant without solvents (e.g., butane, propane, carbon dioxide, alcohol).
That means that rosin will never contain any harmful chemicals — even down to a single part per million — unless they were on the bud to begin with (which they shouldn’t be).
A second reason rosin is so great is that it’s relatively easy to produce. All you need is heat and pressure to produce your own rosin (we’ll show you a super simple method toward the end of this article).
Enterprising cannabis enthusiasts have even come up with professional-grade products (a.k.a. weed presses) that use hydraulic or pneumatic pressure to squeeze every last drop of rosin from the pot plant.
A third benefit of rosin is that it’s both pure and potent. When you apply heat and pressure to the marijuana buds, the rosin separates from the plant matter (which has a tendency to dilute the potency of the recreational or medical benefits you hope to achieve).
To help you understand this last point a bit better, let’s compare rosin to other extracts.
How Does Rosin Compare To Other Extracts?
When it comes to potency, rosin is on par with other extracts like tincture, live resin, THC oil, CBD oil, and hemp oil. So if you’re looking for a heady experience from just a small amount of product, rosin is a good choice.
Unlike many of the other concentrates that you can make in your kitchen or buy at your local head shop, rosin is 100-percent dependent on the quality of the starting material you use.
So if you start with a high-THC or high-CBD strain, you’re going to wind up with a highly concentrated rosin. If, on the other hand, you start with a low-THC or low-CBD strain, you’re going to wind up with less potent rosin.
With rosin, there’s no way to mask or compensate for the impurities within the starting material. What you see is what you get.
For rosin, there is no workaround — no way to cover up impurities. Bad buds produce bad rosin. So, as they say in the industry, “Quality in equals quality out.”
Fortunately, that logic works both ways. If you know that the rosin is of good quality, you know that the buds it came from were of good quality also.
How To Use Rosin
With a dab rig that relies on an open flame or a vaporizer that allows for higher temperatures, you’ll get a bigger and thicker smoke that will have an almost immediate and strong effect.
If you opt instead to adjust your vaporizer down to relatively low temperatures, you’ll get a fuller terpene and cannabinoid profile.
These low temperatures vaporize the rosins enough so that you can inhale them while preserving the psychoactive and medicinal compounds, such as:
Lower temperatures also produce a thinner, cooler smoke that won’t irritate your throat and lungs the way the smoke from high temperatures does.
Finally, vaporizing your rosin at lower temperatures will delay the effects slightly. It’s not going to take an hour or more like it would with edibles, but it won’t be the immediate rush like it would be if you dabbed or vaped at high temps.
It’s your choice.
Tips For Buying The Best Rosin
Most of the tips we have for buying the best rosin are the same as those for buying other concentrates (or even dried bud).
Here’s what to look for.
Quality rosin is a light amber or tan color.
If the rosin is green, that means that some plant matter and/or chlorophyll is still present. That will decrease the potency and quality of the final product. Don’t buy.
If the rosin is dark, it just means that the original buds were “old” when the producers extracted the rosin. Or, instead of saying “old,” maybe “aged” would be the better term. Dark rosin isn’t necessarily low-quality rosin.
If you can’t find the light-amber or tan rosin, you can still get a good product with the darker rosin.
Quality rosin should smell like the bud it came from.
If the rosin smells like grass, hay, or even nothing at all, skip it.
Good rosin should look clean. It shouldn’t have any plant matter (specks or hairs) floating around inside it. Fortunately, this is rare in commercially produced products.
Good rosin should also be translucent (i.e., semitransparent) and have a consistent hue (that light amber or tan color) throughout.
Can You Make Your Own Rosin?
We never tire of hearing someone ask this question because, yes, you can make your own rosin.
We love seeing their joy when they discover just how easy it is to make their own rosin with nothing more than a few household items.
Here’s how to do it.
- Flat iron (one with a digital temperature display works best)
- Parchment paper
- Your favorite strain of dried bud
- Pot holder (Ha! See what we did there?) or towel
- Razorblade or dab tool
- Scale (optional)
- Using the scale, measure out 2 grams of bud (or just eyeball it if you don’t have a scale).
- Break that bud into 4 pieces (roughly a ½ gram each).
- Heat flat iron to between 300℉ and 330℉.
- Tear off a 12-inch piece of parchment paper and fold it in half.
- Place ½ gram of bud between the parchment paper.
- When it’s hot enough, place parchment paper in flat iron.
- Press flat iron together hard for 3 seconds (pot holder or towel comes in handy here so you don’t burn yourself).
- Carefully remove parchment paper.
- You’ll see a resin stain surrounding the bud.
- Move the bud to another spot and press again for 3 seconds.
- Move the bud one more time (if there’s room) and press for another 3 seconds.
- Remove parchment paper and collect the rosin with the razor blade or dab tool.
See how easy that was!
We could probably even reduce the number of steps so it doesn’t seem so daunting, but we want to be thorough and make sure you understand.
No complicated chemistry or long hours hovering over a burner. Just simple, straight-forward rosin extraction. You probably have all the stuff you’ll need lying around the house already anyway.
Buy A High-Quality Rosin Before You DIY
Sure, technically, you could make your very own rosin with the method we described above, just like you could technically build your own car.
But why not leave it to the professionals? They’ve got the experience and the know-how to do it right. Plus, you’ll get a better-quality, safer extract.
What’s more, the finished product will be more concentrated than the stuff you get through DIY methods, so just a little bit will go a lot further.
The method mentioned above will work in a pinch when your local dispensary is closed and you just have to have a taste right away. But your best bet is to purchase your rosin from a professional.
For more information on all things cannabis and to check out our 100-percent all-natural marijuana products, visit HonestMarijuana.com today.