If you’ve ever leisurely wandered through your local cannabis dispensary or browsed through an online cannabis retailer, you may have come across some products that advertise something called “live resin.” This might spark imaginations of something alive in your particular product and cause a sense of wariness or distrust.
The term “resin” might make you think of a wooden table with some clear solid liquid in between the panels, so how exactly does that play into a cannabinoid product? In this article, we’ll be defining exactly what live resin is, what makes it so unique, and how to use it. Let’s get started!
Live Resin: What Is It?
In order to understand what live resin is, it is important to know what it’s classified as: a cannabis concentration. There are many different types of concentrations (also called extractions) available in the market. They are typically named after their textures: shatter, a brittle concentrate that will “shatter” if dropped; batter, named after its gooey thick texture; waxy, a sticky somewhat dry concentrate; saucy, a somewhat liquid texture, and so forth.
Live resin has a pliable texture that falls between a saucy and waxy consistency: extremely sticky but not too wet. All concentrations, including live resin, will need to be used with a dab tool to avoid making things unnecessarily messy. For more information on dabbing, check out our article entitled Teach Me How To Dab!
What Does Live Resin Look Like?
Live resin can range from a white-ish yellow to a dark yellow, but contains a high THC content complete with an intricate terpene profile. Live resin has garnered a reputation for being an excellent preserver of the original flavors and aromas of the cannabis plant while being one of the most affordable concentrations available. High quality combined with low prices? Jackpot!
How Much Should Live Resin Cost?
Live resin tends to be more affordable in today’s marketplace, but that was not always the case. Due to its unique method of creation, the process was both extensive and expensive. At one point, live resin cost more than $100 for a single gram and was only available from specialized vendors. Live resin was regarded as one of the most premium exotic concentrates in the industry.
Yet thanks to the marvels of modern science and technological advancements, the price for premium live resin has become much more affordable. The cost of live resin in today's market typically stays between $20-$30 per gram, occasionally seen at $50 a gram for more premium products and brands.
How Is Live Resin Made?
Live resin has fascinating origins that makes it unique from any other cannabis concentrations. Whereas other concentrates are put through the traditional drying, curing, and trimming processing, live resin uses freshly harvested cannabis plants that are immediately frozen. The freshly frozen cannabis plants are able to retain the terpenes responsible for the scent and flavor of the cannabis plant, a stark contrast to the amount lost in the regular processes of other concentrates.
To get a bit more technical, let’s look at the first steps of the concentration process. In order for the concentrate to be viable, the moisture and chlorophyll must be removed via the drying and curing stages. This unfortunately degrades much of the terpenes as they are exposed to sunlight, oxygen, and heat. Additional terpenes located in the plant’s trichomes (the bud’s covering and foliage) are often broken off from the jostling in the harvest time, which reduces the amount of terpenes available in the plant. The final stage of the concentration process does contain terpenes, but substantially less than what was available in the original plant.
Now let’s get back to the process used in creating live resin. The trichomes that would have been lost in the rough handling of the harvesting are tenderly preserved in the freezing process. This allows the final concentration to contain an extremely high terpene count that results in rich flavor and aromatic scents. The freshly frozen plants are subjected to an extraction process that uses solvents such as butane or propane. The oil is extracted and successfully processed into live resin, all while the plant is kept at a below-freezing temperature. Once the extraction process is complete, the live resin is heated using a vacuum oven. The final product can then be processed in its completed form or infused into the oil used in vape cartridges and disposables.
Are There Other Types of Resin Concentrates?
There are several varieties of resin that aren’t considered “live” or even “resin”; the differences lies in the extraction process. Let’s quickly summarize what live resin is and go through three other types of concentrates that may often be confused with live resin.
Live resin is a cannabis concentrate that is created from freshly frozen plants and is kept frozen throughout the extraction method. Live resin uses solvents and contains the rich flavor and aroma from the original plant.
Cured resin utilizes dried plants, the complete opposite of live resin. This particular form of resin is used in other cannabis concentrations that we mentioned in the beginning of this article: wax, shatter, batter, etc.
Whereas live resin uses solvents, rosin does not. Rather, live rosin utilizes a press to combine the pressure and heat necessary to strip the trichomes away. Similar to live resin, live rosin uses frozen plant material to complete the extraction process. However, simple rosins can use dried plant material as well.
Distillate is the cannabis oil produced in the refining stage of resin. This refining stage can either remove all the impurities in the resin or to isolate a desired compound within the resin. Unlike live resin, distillate uses dried plant material in its creation. Distillate is preferable to users who enjoy a more neutral flavor, as all the terpenes responsible for scent and flavor have been stripped away.
Storing Live Resin
As with most cannabis products, live resin should be kept away from direct sunlight, open air, or high heat. The live resin may dry out and become unusable or may harden to the point where handling becomes frustratingly difficult. The best place to store live resin is actually in your refrigerator, preferably in a sealed container. The terpenes will be protected from degradation and will retain their flavor and taste for much longer.
Live resin might seem like an intimidating product if you're unsure of what it is or how it's made. After reading this article, you should have a greater understanding on why this particular type of cannabis concentrate is so popular. Live resin, unlike other concentrates, comes from freshly frozen plant matter. Consuming a product that advertises live resin will ensure you get the maximum flavor and scent due to the complex terpene profile. While live resin used to be quite costly due to its production process, it has now become one of the more affordable options when it comes to enjoying a cannabis concentrate.
There are many forms of cannabis extracts including shatter, battery, waxy, and saucy. The texture of live resin falls somewhere between saucy and waxy, so you'll need a dabbing device in order to properly use it. As with all psychoactive cannabinoid-infused products, products containing live resin should be stored in a cool dark place (a refrigerator is ideal) and away from heat, light, and oxygen to prevent deterioration.
Speaking of cannabinoid-infused products, we here at IwoHawk Extracts carry some of the finest cannabis products on the market. Feel free to check out our extensive collection of both edibles and inhalables, available in Delta-8 THC, Farm Bill Compliant Delta-9 THC, HHC, or THC-O. All of our gummies, softgels, vape cartridges, disposables, and tinctures have been thoroughly tested by independent third -party labs. you can view the results of these tests in each product description as well as a scannable OR code on the product packaging. If there's anything in this article or on our site that you'd like more information on, you can reach out to us via our online form or by email. Our team of knowledgeable experts look forward to speaking with you soon! Check back soon for our next article, where we'll be discussing The Best Ways To Use Live Resin. Hope to see you there!