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What Are Cannabis Dabs?

Cannabis dabs, or concentrates, are made by distilling cannabis down to its most desirable qualities for a more potent substance. There are numerous types of dabs, produced using different methods that all accumulate the trichomes of the plant.

Concentrates contain all of the cannabinoids and terpenes of the cannabis bud, but without the leaves and other excess plant material. Therefore, per ounce, dabs deliver a more potent experience than flower.

Methods to Use Dabs

The most popular method to use dabs for fast relief is by vaporizing them in a glass dab rig. This method traditionally involves heating a nail or other small surface area with a torch, then adding the concentrate to the hot surface. Users inhale the vapor that results from this process.

E-nails are also available to buy, which connect to a controller box so the temperature of the dab can be regulated and more consistent. And more recently, electronic vaporizers are becoming a popular way to easily inhale the vapor from dabs.


What Are the Different Types of Dabs?

Dabs can be extracted with or without the use of chemicals. They’re categorized by their appearance, texture, and method of extraction. Let’s look at the most common types of dabs.


Shatter is probably the most popular cannabis concentrate. It has an easy-to-handle brittle, glass-like texture, and is usually between a golden and bright amber color.

Shatter is extracted using butane hash oil (BHO) and is often bought in parchment paper as it has a sticky surface. Like long chewy candy, it can be pulled and stretched until it breaks.


Wax, as you guessed, has a waxy rather than oily texture. Its sticky surface makes it messy to handle without good dabbing tools. Like shatter, it’s made through an extraction process that uses BHO.

Moreover, wax is usually sold in small glass jars or silicone containers. It often contains a high THC content, producing a powerful and long-lasting high.


Budder, or badder, has a light, opaque color and a soft, slightly oily texture, like thick cake batter. Another concentrate extracted using BHO, it often packs a high terpene profile.

Crumble is a variation of budder that has a crumbly texture, making it easier to handle with your hands than wax or shatter.


Rosin is one of the most popular types of dabs amongst users looking for a more natural extract. It’s a cannabis concentrate made without the use of solvents like butane. Instead, pressure and heat are applied to dry cannabis buds, kief, trim, or hash. This squeezes the cannabinoids and terpenes from them.

Rosin packs high potency and flavor, as it retains more of the natural terpenes and flavonoids from the original plant.


Oil usually has a runny texture and can be made using BHO. But other times it’s extracted using CO2 gas, which takes place at a lower temperature, preserving more of the plant’s natural terpenes and flavors.

Oil is often found in pre-filled vape pens and vape cartridges and produces a more pure, flavorful high. Rick Simpson Oil (RSO) is a type of cannabis oil, but it’s extracted using alcohol instead of gas and isn’t usually inhaled.

The Types of Dabs Are Endless

There are still more types of cannabis dabs, including distillate and live resin. But we’ve given you the basics here. The types of dabs you choose will depend on your handling preferences, the tools you have, and the kind of experience you’re looking for.