Plus CBD Oil Review
PlusCBD™ Oil’s balm was also a team favorite.
The luxurious, spa-quality topical was soothing and moisturizing to our skin, and we used it several times a day.
The PlusCBD™ Oil Gold softgels were probably the most effective of all the products we tried.
The gold-colored oil containing 15 mg of CBD helped us sleep, relax, and feel a strong sense of well-being.
Certain factors can make or break a CBD brand, such as how a company sources their hemp, or if the labeling matches what is inside the products.
At The CBD Insider, we measure the excellence of a brand by four primary criteria:
- The quality of their manufacturing process
- The value of their products
- The quality of their ingredients
- The efficacy of their products
Let’s start with PlusCBD’s parent company, CV Sciences.
Background Of PlusCBD
PlusCBD™, which is owned by CV Sciences, was started in 2014 and has since then grown to become one of the most respected and well-known brands in the industry.
PlusCBD is committed to safety with high-quality products featuring three formulations tailored for customers with different degrees of experience with CBD.
In September of 2018, CV Sciences announced that it had obtained a self-affirmed GRAS (Generally Recognized As Safe by FDA safety standards) designation for their PlusCBD™ Oil Gold Formula product line.
CV Sciences became the first hemp-derived CBD company to obtain the highly sought-after status.
The company received this designation by going through the necessary protocols to confirm the safety of hemp CBD and published their safety data in the journal of toxicology.
In addition, CV Sciences has committed to a safe and smart supply chain starting with hemp sourced from Holland, CO2 extraction, and extensive third-party testing to ensure accuracy and purity.
PlusCBD’s Parent Company: CV Sciences
CV Sciences was started by a father and son in 2012 who secured a contract with hemp farmers in Holland.
Eventually, noticing that the CBD market lacked companies who were marketing the cannabinoid effectively and per regulations, they decided to form PlusCBD and hired personnel with a background in the supplements business.
Today, CV Sciences/PlusCBD™ Oil is the second largest CBD company in the industry by market share, making up 11% of the total market.
The San Diego-based company has made PlusCBD one of the most recognizable and trusted brands on the market, particularly due to its focus on safety.
What Makes PlusCBD Unique: A Focus On Safety
In 2018, CV Sciences obtained self-affirmed GRAS (Generally Recognized As Safe, a designation determined by the FDA’s safety guidelines) status for their Extra Strength Formula (formerly known as Gold Formula) line of PlusCBD™ Oil products.
The process required hundreds of thousands of dollars and nearly 5 years to complete.
CV Sciences is the first hemp company ever to receive this status.
The company is also working on a pharmaceutical CBD-based drug to help people quit tobacco.
Where Does PlusCBD Get Their Hemp?
PlusCBD sources their hemp from farms in Holland (The Netherlands).
Holland has become one of the most prestigious agricultural countries in the world, using safe, sustainable methods that have made the nation the world’s number two exporter of food by value.
The United States is number one, and it has 270 times the landmass of Holland.
Most importantly, Holland has high food safety ratings due to its agricultural standards, technology, and sustainable practices.
PlusCBD’s hemp is grown from EU certified hemp seeds, is non-GMO, and undergoes testing throughout the cultivation process to ensure the hemp is clean.
What Extraction Methods Does PlusCBD Use?
PlusCBD™ Oil uses CO2 to extract the oil from the entire hemp plant, such as the stem and stalk.
CO2 is considered by many to be the best extraction method because it is safe and pulls out all the desirable phytonutrients, including CBD.
The facility where PlusCBD extracts the oil meets the FDA’s food ingredient standards.
Plus CBD’s Third-Party Testing
PlusCBD does extensive testing on their products in accordance with their quality management program.
Primarily, PlusCBD uses Nevada-based, ISO-17025 accredited DB Labs as their third-party testing lab.
DB Labs tests products for cannabinoid potency, residual solvents, heavy metals, pesticides, and microbes.
Additionally, CV Sciences uses their in-house testing lab to analyze cannabinoid potency.
Customers can access certificates of analysis for all of PlusCBD™ Oil’s products online.
Also, products come with a QR code that allows customers to access individual product results directly from their mobile device.
PlusCBD takes safety seriously and wants customers to feel comfortable when taking CBD.
PlusCBD Extra Strength And Other Formulations
All of PlusCBD’s products are genuinely full-spectrum, including higher amounts of minor cannabinoids (e.g., CBDV, CBDA, CBC, etc.) as compared to products from other brands.
As a result, products from PlusCBD seem to be more effective at lower doses than other brands.
Using high-quality, full-spectrum hemp oil allows PlusCBD to provide an effective product that is available in all of their formulations.
“Hemp-derived CBD is more than just CBD. We sell hemp extract, and the totality of that has 500 bioactive compounds that all work together to be more powerful,” said Syed. “Hemp oil is not just this single molecule, there’s more to it than that.”
PlusCBD has four formulations:
- Raw Formula
- Original Formula
- Extra Strength Formula
- Maximum Strength Formula
These formulations are available in select product types.
PlusCBD’s Raw Formula is the most basic formulation.
It contains both CBD and CBDA (cannabidiolic acid), the parent compound of CBD.
When heated, CBDA breaks down into CBD.
However, the Raw Formula is not heated and contains both cannabinoids.
CBDA is believed to have similar benefits to CBD, such as for seizures and cancer, but research is sparse.
Original Formula is a decarboxylated form of the Raw Formula, which typically has a stronger CBD concentration than the Raw products but less than the Extra Strength Formula.
Decarboxylation is the heating of cannabis to break down cannabinoids like CBDA into the more active form of CBD.
Smoking marijuana decarboxylates the plant material immediately because of the high heat, converting THCA into THC and producing a high.
To preserve the cannabinoids and other plant material present in hemp, decarboxylation must occur at a low heat over time.
PlusCBD’s Original Formula contains all-natural compounds including CBD, other cannabinoids, Vitamin E, and fatty acids
Extra Strength Formula
PlusCBD’s Extra Strength Formula is the brand’s best-selling product line.
The Extra Strength Formula is both decarboxylated and distilled.
PlusCBD removes the chlorophyll and other plant material, which makes the oil turn gold.
This is the cleanest and highest-concentrated oil that PlusCBDoffers.
CV Sciences used the Extra Strength Formula products in their toxicology studies to obtain self-affirmed GRAS status.
PlusCBD Certifications And Awards
CV Sciences was one of the first companies to receive a certification from the US Hemp Authority.
To earn the certification, CV Sciences and the PlusCBD brand had to meet the Authority’s strict standards and pass a third-party audit.
The Authority awarded its certification seal for use on PlusCBDs products and marketing materials.
As mentioned above, CV Sciences has also obtained self-affirmed GRAS status for the PlusCBD™ Oil Gold Formula product line.
These products underwent three separate studies to assess their safety and eventually received the hemp industry’s first ever self-affirmed GRAS status per the FDA’s safety guidelines.
PlusCBD has one of the better websites of the CBD companies we’ve reviewed.
The site is easy to use, well-organized, and makes it simple for users to purchase products.
PlusCBD also offers information on CBD and how they produce their hemp oil.
Users can find several pieces of accurate content that provide essential information about CBD.
Additionally, PlusCBD offers a store locator that allows consumers to find what stores sell PlusCBD products.
Online customers can create an account that will store their information for quicker checkouts on subsequent orders.
PlusCBD has refreshing, quality customer service.
We were happy with the level of professionalism, kindness, and respect we were shown by their team.
Orders can be returned within 14 days of delivery and the products must be unopened and unused to receive a full refund.
Customers can contact PlusCBD by email ([email protected]) or by phone at 1-855-PLUS-CBD (1-855-758-7223).
PlusCBD has received mostly positive reviews.
As expected with such a large brand like PlusCBD, reviews on them can be found in several places, including the company’s website, from CBD media sites, and third-party sites.
According to Trust Pilot, PlusCBD has an 8.9/10 Trust score, which is considered a “Great” rating.
Nearly 90% of the PlusCBD reviews are 4 and 5-star reviews.
Most positive reviews praise the PlusCBD products themselves.
Several reviewers say they experienced relief from occasional aches.
Many reviewers also applaud the customer service team for quickly correcting any issues or for providing helpful information.
Most of the complaints seem to be customers expressing their frustration that CBD does not work for them.
This has little to do with PlusCBD products and more to do with how that individual reacts to CBD.
A few other reviewers noted that shipping can seem to take a while, or that the price to guarantee quicker shipping is a bit expensive.
PlusCBD often replies to these complaints within a couple of days and offers to help the individual personally.
PlusCBD is affiliated with the following organizations:
- US Hemp Roundtable (Founding Members)
- US Hemp Authority
- Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN)
- American Herbal Products Association (AHPA)
- American Herbal Pharmacopoeia (AHP)
- American Botanical Council (ABC)
All of these are reputable, prominent organizations in the herbal and hemp industries.
The US Hemp Roundtable is one of the most prominent hemp organizations in the industry and has been at the forefront of hemp legalization both federally and on the state level.
CV Sciences played a major role in starting the Roundtable and turning it into what it is today: a group of the industry’s finest companies, individuals, and organizations who are committed to advocating for hemp.
“We aim to educate the public as the pioneers of this industry and we will continue to battle for change in public policy to continue to pave the way for the success of the hemp industry as a whole,” said Syed.
The Future Of PlusCBD
In 2020, PlusCBD initiated a brand refresh, updating the packaging and product offerings of their flagship brand. The 30+ new product launch includes eight new, innovative products – including extra strength gummies and maximum strength softgels.
“The CV Sciences team is thrilled to introduce our refreshed PlusCBD products that will leverage our brand equity as the safest and most trusted CBD product offering available, all designed to resonate with our existing customers while attracting new consumers,” said Joseph Dowling, Chief Executive Officer of CV Sciences.
CV Sciences also introduced Happy Lane™, a hemp-derived CBD line with 0.00% THC.
“Happy Lane allows us to expand our sales channels to bring the CV Sciences’ quality and scientific standards to a broader audience at value,” Dowling added.
In addition, CV Sciences has expanded their product portfolio to include a non-CBD line of immunity products: CV™ Acute and CV™ Defense.
Best Products From Plus CBD Oil
Plus CBD Oil Peppermint Spray
While aimed toward those new to CBD, our experienced team thoroughly enjoyed PlusCBD™ Oil’s Peppermint Spray.
The spray has a wonderful mint taste that had us coming back for more. More importantly, teammates reported a variety of benefits, including increased focus, better sleep, and a sense of calm.
No matter your experience with CBD, our team highly recommends you try PlusCBD™ Oil’s sprays.
Plus CBD Oil’s Extra Strength Balm
The Gold Formula Extra Strength Balm from PlusCBD™ Oil is a great topical.
One of its best benefits was soothing irritation. The topical was smooth, creamy, and easily absorbed into our skin.
“It’s almost like liquid gold,” said one of our team members.
Plus CBD Oil Extra Strength Formula 15mg Softgels
The self-affirmed GRAS formula Extra Strength Formula 15mg Softgels pack quite a punch.
Almost everyone who took them felt more relaxed, focused, and in a good mood. Our team primarily reported getting better sleep.
This is the most effective product we tried and we highly recommend it to anyone interested in CBD.
Plus CBD Oil Product Reviews
PLUSCBD OIL SOFTGELS REVIEW
Each of the formulations has a different concentration of CBD.
The Raw Formula capsules have 5 mg of CBD and CBDA per softgel, the Original Formula softgels have 10 mg of CBD, and the Extra Strength Formula has 15 mg.
All of the products we tested had 60 softgels except for the Original Formula product, which had 30.
According to certificates of analysis, all products were within 1 mg of their respective baselines.
Like with the capsules, in comparison with other brands, PlusCBD offers CBD concentrations that are well below the average.
Softgels have similar concentrations to capsule products, usually around 20-30 mg per softgel.
With that said, the low concentration does not necessarily correlate with low efficacy, as we’ll explain in the effectiveness section below.
Also, while all products are full-spectrum, the Raw Formula contains significantly fewer minor cannabinoids and at lesser concentrations.
We compared the value of these softgel products to those from competing brands.
Here’s an analysis of for each softgel product we tested.
The 60 ct bottle retails for $39.99, which comes in at $0.133/mg.
This is high for a product containing only 5 mg of CBD and CBDA per softgel.
Nevertheless, few companies offer a raw hemp oil formula, and it may prove to be more beneficial than the other products for some people.
The 10 ct product costs $11.99, and the 30 ct is $19.99.
PlusCBD prices the 30 ct Original Formula softgels at $24.99, which is $0.083/mg.
This is a much better price than the Raw Formula softgels, as it’s the same price as the Raw 30 ct softgels.
In comparison to softgels from other brands, this pricing is more competitive.
The 10 ct is $13.99 while the 60 ct costs $48.99.
Extra Strength Formula
The 60 ct Extra Strength Formula softgels are $69.99, which is $0.078/mg.
As with the Original Formula softgels, this product is also well-priced.
The 30 ct costs $39.99.
All of the softgels come in amber glass bottles with black, plastic lids.
The labeling is nearly identical to the capsules product.
As with all of PlusCBD’s products, each label has a QR code that allows customers to look up the corresponding certificate of analysis.
Regarding the softgels themselves, the Raw and Original Formula softgels are both black while the Extra Strength Formula softgels are gold.
Ingredients for all of the PlusCBD Oil capsules include: Hemp Oil (includes CBD), Extra Virgin Olive Oil, and Vegetarian Softgel (Modified Corn Starch, Glycerin, Carrageenan, Sorbitol, & Purified Water).
Like the capsules, the ingredients for the softgels are basic, and hemp oil is the only active ingredient.
We don’t like the fact that the softgels contain modified corn starch though.
Flavor & Scent
As expected, the softgels do not have a detectable taste, but they have a slight sweet smell.
Here are our team’s results for each formula of softgels.
Unfortunately, our team noticed few, mild effects with the Raw softgels.
Taking one capsule, some team members believed it helped with relaxation, while others felt nothing.
It took at least two or three softgels to noticeably discern any benefits.
The Original Formula softgels were considerably more effective than the Raw softgels.
Our team generally felt more relaxed and in a better mood.
We usually needed at least two of the softgels to feel these effects.
Extra Strength Formula
The Extra Strength Formula softgels were a team favorite.
We noticed considerably less muscle soreness by taking just one gold softgel.
Our team also experienced relaxation, an overall sense of well-being and a happy mood, along with improved sleep quality.
To obtain the latter three effects, we usually had to take at least two of the gold softgels.
Overall, the softgels helped us feel care-free during stressful times, such as when traveling.
Pros & Cons
Pros for the PlusCBD Oil softgels:
- Original Formula and Extra Strength Formula products are well-priced
- Most softgels significantly effective for recovery and sleep
- Variety of product options
Cons for the PlusCBD Oil softgels:
- Raw Formula softgels were mildly effective and pricey
PLUSCBD OIL SPRAY REVIEW
PlusCBD Oil’s 2 oz spray holds 500 mg of CBD, which is 250 mg of CBD per ounce.
According to the certificate of analysis, the spray had 492 mg of CBD, while the entire amount of cannabinoids totaled 575 mg.
The serving size is 3 mg per 2 sprays, with approximately 160 servings per 2 oz bottle.
In comparison with other CBD sprays on the market, this seems to be an average concentration.
For example, Hemp Health offers sprays at around the same concentration, such as 2 oz/550 mg.
The small serving size makes PlusCBD’s spray an excellent option for beginners to CBD, as it offers flexibility with dosing and helps customers figure out what amount of CBD is most useful for them.
PlusCBD Oil’s 2 oz spray costs $67.95, which comes in at $0.136/mg and $33.975/oz.
Regarding the price per mg, this is a little high.
While this product is higher than the average price on the market, we believe that PlusCBD’s spray is worth it as it’s one of the best we’ve ever tried.
The PlusCBD Oil spray comes in an amber glass bottle with a plastic black pump lid and a clear plastic cap to protect the pump.
PlusCBD’s label has supplement facts, an ingredients list, and a warning to keep the spray away from heat, light, and humidity to preserve its freshness.
As always, a QR code is also included to provide access to the product’s certificate of analysis.
The liquid itself is a yellow-green color.
Ingredients for the PlusCBD Oil Peppermint Spray include: Hemp Oil (includes CBD), Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Peppermint Oil, Monk Fruit (Siraitia Grosvernorii), Silica, Monolaurin, Quillaja Saponaria, Ascorbyl Palmitate, and Alpha-Tocopherol.
Besides hemp oil, the most notable ingredients in the spray are the extra virgin olive oil and peppermint oil.
PlusCBD previously used polysorbate 80 and glycerin in their formulation.
While they are generally regarded as safe by the FDA, they both pose side effects that could affect a select number of people.
Extra virgin olive oil does not possess these potential harms and is a healthier alternative.
The peppermint oil is also worth mentioning since it plays a major role in this product.
Aside from the flavor (which is superb), peppermint oil also has health benefits that complement CBD, such as helping with headaches, enhancing energy and focus, and improving sleep quality.
Flavor & Scent
As expected, the spray tastes and smells strongly of peppermint, but it is not overpowering.
The peppermint in the spray can also double as a breath freshener since the taste tends to linger for a while.
The most effective aspects of the spray were for energy and focus.
After taking the spray, we nearly immediately perked up and felt more focused.
Our team generally felt like we were more productive when we used the PlusCBD spray.
It also helped us feel more awake if we were groggy.
Another benefit was a general sense of well-being and happiness after using the spray.
Team members seemed more cheerful and in a good mood.
Some of us also found the spray helpful for relaxation and sleep.
If used during the evening, the spray made us more ready for bed, and we slept better throughout the night.
Pros & Cons
Pros for the PlusCBD Oil spray:
- Flexible dosing
- Excellent taste
- Highly effective
- Variety of benefits
Cons for the PlusCBD Oil spray:
- Price is a little high
PLUSCBD OIL BALM REVIEW
The PlusCBD Oil Extra Strength Balm contains 100 mg of CBD in 1.3 oz of product, which comes out to about 77 mg/oz.
According to the certificate of analysis for the balm we received, our product has 109 mg of CBD, while the total cannabinoids reach 115 mg.
If you’ve followed along with all of the previous product reviews, it should not come as a surprise that PlusCBD’s balm has a below-average concentration for the CBD topical market.
While CBD is usually lower in topicals than most other types of CBD products, 77 mg/oz puts this topical at the lowest end of the spectrum.
However, as we’ll explain, this does not take away from its efficacy.
The PlusCBD Oil balm retails for $29.99, which is $0.30/mg and $23.069/oz.
In price per mg, the Extra Strength Balm is a pricey product, but for the retail price, it’s right in the ballpark of most other topicals.
Topicals have a wide range of prices since they can have various purposes, ingredients, and benefits.
For products similar to PlusCBD Oil’s balm, many items usually cost anywhere from $30-$70.
PlusCBD Oil Extra Strength Balm is contained in a clear glass jar.
The label provides an ingredients list that is continued on the bottom of the jar and—like all other PlusCBD products—a QR code that provides access to the corresponding certificate of analysis.
The balm itself is an off-white, cream color.
Ingredients of the PlusCBD Oil Balm include: Prunus Amygdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond Oil), Cera Alba (Beeswax), Candelilla/Jojoba/Rice Bran Polyglyceryl-3 Esters, Glyceryl Stearate, Cetearyl Alcohol, Sodium Stearoyl Lactylate, Hemp Oil (Aerial Plant Parts), Mentha Piperita (Peppermint) Oil, Camellia Sinensis Leaf Extract, Carthamus Tinctorius (Safflower) Seed Oil, and Ascorbyl Palmitate.
The most notable ingredients besides the hemp oil are the peppermint and safflower oil.
Peppermint oil may have several benefits when used topically, such as for headaches, muscle pain and soreness, irritation, and skin softening.
Safflower oil is a common ingredient in cosmetics and may offer a soothing and moisturizing effect on dry skin.
These two ingredients, along with the others, seem to be what provides this balm with most of its benefits.
Scent & Texture
The balm smells like and has a sweet scent to it, which may come from the sweet almond oil, although that typically has a faint smell.
The balm feels high-quality and luxurious, almost as if it were meant to be used at a spa.
It’s smooth, creamy, easy to use, and absorbs well into the skin.
Only a small amount is needed to cover a sizable area.
We believe the most effective use for the PlusCBD Oil Balm is for irritation and skin health.
The balm was incredibly soothing, removing the irritation and itch from bug bites for a few hours.
It also improved the appearance and feel of dry skin on our hands and elbows.
We also noticed mild benefits for muscle pain and inflammation, mostly from muscle soreness after exercise.
Used in conjunction with the gold softgels, these two products were an effective duo for recovery.
Pros & Cons
Pros for the PlusCBD Oil Extra Strength Balm:
- Competitive price
- Luxurious, spa-like quality
- Highly effective
Cons for the PlusCBD Oil Extra Strength Balm:
- CBD seems to play only a small role