Live Resin , Live Rosin and Distillate Differences Explained
Learn differences between the common types of concentrates, including classic distillate, and newer extracts like live resin and live rosin.
One of the best things about cannabis legalization sweeping the nation is the evolution of consuming it. Classic smokers will always have a plethora of fresh herb to choose from, and edible lovers are swimming in tasty treats to sink their teeth into. Seasoned smokers may opt for extracts for their powerful punch and exceptional taste. Flavorful extracts like live resin and live rosin are likened to the complex flavors of wine, with rich terpene profiles that add depth to the smoke itself and the high it produces. However, if you’re not a cannabis connoisseur, it’s easy to get lost in the sauce of the latest and greatest ways to get high. Whether you like to roll a joint, use a vape pen, or take dabs, cannabis extracts are a sublime way to experiment with cannabis flavors and textures. No matter where you’re at in your cannabis journey, read on to learn about many types of extracts and concentrates and what distinguishes them from each other.
What is Live Resin?
It’s difficult (making live resin) like the diamonds seen in this picture here from your home.
Live resin is a cannabis extract made from fresh cannabis flowers. Traditional extracts like crumble, shatter, sugar wax, and snap ‘n pull are made with dried, cured buds. To make live resin, the plants are harvested when the trichomes are ripe and bursting with flavor.
The plant is immediately flash-frozen in liquid nitrogen, typically on-site. The intention is to preserve the plant in its natural state, avoiding any potential harm to the precious trichomes, and prevent the plant matter from beginning decomposition into its dried form.
The resulting product is exceptionally flavorful and terpene-rich, with an aroma and flavor that is true to the genetics. Because of its high terpene concentration and the gentle nature of its handling, live resin boasts a powerful entourage effect and typically produces test results with a robust variety of terpenes and cannabinoids. It is usually bright orange, yellow, or amber, and the texture is crystallized, like what you might find at the bottom of a jar of honey.
What is Live Rosin?
The live resin process involves freezing newly harvested marijuana plants in a lab to extract concentrated THC. This extracted cannabis material is called (live resin).
Live rosin is technically not an extract at all, but a concentrate. Extracts are made with cannabis and a solvent. Cannabis extracts undergo a specific extraction process that involves a closed-loop extraction machine and post-extraction purging to remove any residual solvents. The process is just what it sounds like – the valuable compounds are extracted and the remaining plant waxes, fibers, and fats are left behind.
A concentrate is a concentrated form of cannabis. Rosin is made by pressing fresh cannabis buds in a heated press. When the rosin craze first began, people were making rosin with hair straighteners and t-shirt presses. Now, there are many commercial rosin presses designed to create rosin.
In the case of live rosin, this tasty concentrate is made by concentrating the essence of the plant in a two-part process. First, you make ice wax, also known as ice hash or bubble hash. Then, you press the ice wax into a rosin press, and the resulting concentrate is live rosin.
Live rosin is usually golden or amber in color and has a texture that resembles butter at room temperature. Smoking live rosin is one of the purest ways to experience the flavor and aroma of the originating plant.
Differences Explained – Although cannabis extracts and concentrates share similarities, they often share even more differences.
Live Resin vs Rosin
Although both live resin and rosin are full-spectrum, the process to make them is pretty different. Live resin is made with fresh, frozen cannabis extracted with a solvent and processed with the help of specialized equipment. Rosin is made with fresh, live cannabis that has not been frozen. It is pressed by hand in a special press that uses heat and pressure to slowly squeeze the buds until they produce a sticky, concentrated version of the bud.
Live Resin vs Distillate
Distillate is a cannabis extract typically produced with the same type of equipment used to make live resin. However, distillate is made with dried bud and trimmings rather than live cannabis. Distillate undergoes another step after extraction to distill the crude oil further. This step aims to obtain the highest percentage possible of a particular cannabinoid – most often THC.
Because of the refining process, much of the terpene content is lost. Distillate is a thin, translucent liquid that is ideal for vape pens.
Live Resin vs Sauce
Sauce, also called terp sauce, is often confused with live resin. Live resin indeed has a high terpene content due to the nature of its terpene-preservation efforts during harvest. However, live resin usually has a cannabinoid profile dominated by THC, whereas terp sauce is engineered to have a more customizable profile.
Terp sauce is made by extracting the terpenes from a plant and combining them with an extract like distillate. Because this is a custom blend, there is plenty of room for expert formulation. For example, you could combine terp sauce with equal amounts CBD and THC distillate for a 1:1 experience.
Live Resin vs Wax
The extraction process used to make live resin and wax is usually the same, despite wax being made with dried, cured flowers and trim. However, in the post-extraction process, wax – or sugar wax – is whipped or stirred during the purge process to create its malleable texture. Sugar wax is crystallized like live resin but is a bit drier and a little crumbly.
Live Resin vs Shatter
Shatter is produced just like wax, so the same differences apply when comparing the extraction process to live resin. However, the post-extraction process involves multiple rounds of purification to achieve a thin, translucent sheet of oil that shatters if dropped.
Due to the rigorous purification process, shatter is relatively low in terpene content when compared to live resin. The entourage effect is less pronounced with a lower terpene content, so shatter may not produce as intense of a high. Nevertheless, both are excellent extracts, and live resin vs shatter is merely personal preference.
How to Smoke Live Resin or Rosin
Live resin, rosin, and live rosin are versatile extracts finding their way into different formats. Whether it’s dabbable extracts that you can vaporize with the use of a dab rig or oil pen, or in the form of Pax Era pods. You can also find them in pre-filled, disposable vape pens or cartridges.
If dabbing and vaping isn’t your thing, smoke live resin on top of weed in a bowl or pipe for extra flavor and potency. Rosin is excellent when added to joints and blunts, and for a little artistic expression, roll out a chunk of rosin into a thin rope and wrap it around the outside of your joint. Have a stash of rosin but taking a break from smoking? Use it to make edibles!
Can You Vape Live Resin and Rosin
Absolutely! It’s a bit messy to attempt to add your own live resin or rosin to a vape cart. Their natural viscosity doesn’t pair well with the heating elements of a vape cartridge, and you might end up with a sticky mess that doesn’t produce any vapor. The good news is that many brands have perfected the art of live resin and rosin vapes so you don’t have to.
The Bloom Brands is one such company that specializes in creating live resin vape cartridges with their fingerprinting process. They have evolved the process of making live resin by forgoing the freezing process and extracting freshly cut buds within hours after harvest.
Obtaining the proper viscosity for live rosin is a fine art, and brands like Blue River Terps and CAMP have mastered this process.