Ask a Budtender: What Are the Top 5 Best CBD Products for Anxiety Relief?

Best CBD for Anxiety
By Rachel Sims Updated June 10th

Fact-checked by Alexandra Arnett, MS

If you're someone who's been grappling with anxiety, you're not alone. The constant barrage of life's stressors can leave anyone feeling on edge. What if there were a natural way to find some relief? Enter CBD, a compound that’s since gained attention for its potential to ease symptoms of anxiety.

There are several popular reasons people use CBD – and relief from anxiety is at the top of the list. A Forbes Health survey looked at the reasons for CBD use by age. Other than the age 58 to 76 crowd, over 50% of the respondents use CBD to alleviate anxiety.

 A massive array of CBD products line dispensaries and online shelves. With so many products available, it may be difficult to pinpoint the best CBD products for anxiety. This guide explores how effective CBD is for anxiety and compares the highest-reviewed, top-rated, and most reputable products available. 

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Can CBD Really Help With Anxiety?

The short answer is yes – CBD may genuinely help some consumers with anxiety. Research suggests that CBD has the potential to relieve anxiety symptoms.1 Research has also demonstrated that CBD may have an anxiolytic effect by boosting anandamide levels, which then indirectly activates the CB1 receptors, leading to reduced anxiety responses.2

However, several factors are in play that determine its efficacy. First, it can largely depend on the specific product. If you have a product with higher levels of THC, there is an increased risk for an anxiety-induced response, particularly for consumers who may not use THC on a regular basis.

Part of a CBD product’s formulation may also include the incorporation of other potential symptom-relieving ingredients. Some companies may add herbs like passionflower, skullcap, or even terpenes that have the potential to provide relief from symptoms of anxiety. Linalool, a common terpene in cannabis, may reduce anxiety, increase social interaction, and decrease aggressive behavior.3 In addition, limonene has also demonstrated anti-anxiety properties via serotonin receptors in the brain.

While many companies may market their products with CBD for anxiety, it is essential to remember that the FDA has not approved CBD for any medical use except Epidiolex for certain epileptic conditions and customers should be cautious of companies making medical claims about their CBD products.

Best CBD For Anxiety

Best CBD for Anxiety

We have compiled some top-rated CBD oils and other products from the best CBD oil brands. These products have been selected based on consumer reviews and what they find relief with most. However, “best” is still subjective. Ultimately, you can use this guide to understand how to find a high-quality CBD product that suits your personal needs and preferences.

1. Best CBD Oil - Papa & Barkley Hemp Releaf Drops 30mg

Formula: Whole plant full-spectrum

Ingredients: MCT oil, hemp oil, and a lemongrass ginger blend for the lemongrass ginger flavor

Certificate of Analysis: Listed on its certificate of analysis page

 Strength/Serving Size: 

  • 30ml bottle = 900mg CBD
  • 30mg per 1ml serving

Price: $47.99 to $59.99 (depending on Subscribe and Save selection)

Papa & Barkley’s Hemp Releaf Drops offer a minimal ingredient formula to make the most of the whole plant, full-spectrum CBD. The whole plant infusion contains more than CBD; it also includes other potentially beneficial cannabinoids, terpenes, phytonutrients, plant fats, and chlorophyll. Papa & Barkley’s also includes a lemongrass ginger blend, and lemongrass contains limonene, which has demonstrated anti-anxiety properties.4

Using a solventless solution, the brand produces a completely chemical-free MCT oil tincture. Products are batch-tested for accuracy, then clean-tested for ten residual solvents, five microbials, and sixty-six different pesticides. The lengths Papa & Barkley goes to ensure clean product purity help cement them as one of the best CBD oil brands.

These Hemp Releaf Drops contain 30mg of hemp extract per serving, making them a fit for a daily CBD routine. Through consistency, the drops may help relieve stress, provide daily wellness, and deliver whole-body comfort.

2. Best CBD Gummies - Charlotte’s Web Daily Wellness 25mg CBD Gummies

Best CBD Gummies for Anxiety

Formula: Full-spectrum

Ingredients: Full-spectrum hemp extracts from Charlotte’s Web plants. Other ingredients include organic tapioca syrup, organic cane sugar, water, organic tapioca maltodextrin, organic MCT oil, pectin, organic natural flavors, and citric acid. It also contains less than 1% sodium citrate, organic sunflower oil, organic carnauba wax, sweet potato and carrot juice concentrate, organic fruit and vegetable juice for color, and organic sunflower lecithin. 

Certificate of Analysis:  Under "About Us," under certificate of analysis, and enter the lot number 

Strength/Serving Size: 

  • 60-count container of 25mg CBD gummies
  • Two gummies per serving

Price: $55.99 to $69.99 (depending on "Subscribe and Save" selection)

Charlotte’s Web proudly holds a B Corp certification for higher transparency, performance, and accountability in their products. A staple name in the CBD industry now, the brand’s original formula helped spark an entire movement. After catching media attention, it’s thanks to Charlotte’s Web that CBD is now a household name.

The brand’s CBD gummies are packed with full-spectrum hemp extract and a delightfully sweet flavor. Each extract contains a unique blend of cannabinoids, terpenes, flavonoids, and other valuable hemp compounds. Called “Daily Wellness” gummies, the company recommends their use on a daily basis.

Gummies are a reliable alternative for capsules, tinctures, and even other denser CBD edibles. These gummies, in particular, provide 150% more CBD than other Charlotte’s Web gummy blends. 25mg CBD in each serving represents a daily amount for many consumers — a “sweet spot” daily CBD level.

3. Best CBD Flower Strains

Most consumers who use weed for anxiety prefer strains high in CBD and low in THC. They start with small serving sizes and minimal doses and work their way up as needed.

Terpenes may also play a massive role in the effects of a strain or CBD product. Results from research indicate that certain terpenes may help users attain relaxation and counteract anxiety. However, while some terpenes, like linalool and limonene, may increase relief from anxiety symptoms, other terpenes may do the opposite. These include guaiol, eucalyptol, sabinene, 3-carene, α-phellandrene, and γ-terpinene.5

It’s important to understand exactly what’s in each CBD flower strain to ensure you include compounds that may help rather than cause an adverse reaction. 

Popular CBD Flower Strains Used for Anxiety

According to Leafly, many users focus on CBD to THC-ratio to choose flower strains that help treat their anxiety. These might include popular CBD-dominant strains like Sour Space Candy, which is typically 1% THC and 15% CBD. 

Suver Haze is another popular choice, as 45% of its users say it helps with anxiety. On average, you might expect around 1% THC and 18% CBD.

Finally, 48% of people say Sweet and Sour Widow helps with anxiety, and another 40% say it helps with stress. The strain has a 1:1 CBD to THC ratio. While its intoxicating effects may be more prominent than other CBD flower strains, it was bred to accentuate its CBD profile.

These are all based on user reports and Leafly reviews, so do note that your experience may differ. You may prefer a different strain that may also help with pain and sleep, or may be better suited for stress. Everyone is unique, so it can take time to discover which cannabis strain is a fit for your specific symptoms. It may also be good to speak with a doctor for more insight on what may be best for you.

4. Best CBD Tincture - Sun God Medicinals Organic Heka Worry & Fear Hemp Tincture 500

Best CBD Tincture for Anxiety

Formula: Whole plant full-spectrum

Ingredients: Made with vegetable glycerin plus organic cane alcohol, together infused with Oregon-grown hemp. Then, the extract is combined with d-limonene, milky oat tops, skullcap, and passionflower.

Certificate of Analysis: Visit "Test Results" or click “See Testing Results” on the website footer, type in the product batch number.

Strength/Serving Size:

  • Approximately 500mg cannabinoids per 30ml bottle
  • Approximately 16.6mg per 1ml dropper serving

Price: $44.99

Designed for daytime use, Sun God Medicinals formulated the Organic Heka Worry & Fear Hemp Tincture for mental ease. The certified organic hemp tincture is compounded with other medicinal herbs traditionally used by herbalists for worry and fear.

First, the brand uses whole hemp flower instead of an isolate to maximize the plant’s healing properties. Then, they incorporate other well-known herbs studied to help with anxiety. These include passionflower and skullcap.6,7

This tincture is manufactured responsibly and is free of filler ingredients, which may help power someone through the day. As such, it’s a potentially worthwhile option for those who enjoy tinctures or oils.

5. Best CBD Sublingual Spray - Tetra Labs GoldMist CBD Oral Spray

Formula: Isolate

Ingredients: CBD crystalline isolate, carrier oil from coconut/palm oil, natural flavoring oils, and sweetener

Certificate of Analysis: Directly on the product page, under lab reports

Strength/Serving Size:

  • 3.5ml vial contains 100mg CBD isolate
  • Approximately 80 sprays per vial or 1.25mg CBD per spray

Price: 1 vial $18, 5 vials $80, 10 vials $150

This is an oral spray for consumers who want more convenience over a tincture. The GoldMist CBD oral spray from Tetra Labs offers 3.5ml vials that each contain 100mg ultra-pure isolate CBD. With a micro-atomizer, the vial delivers clinically precise, metered serving sizes of approximately 80 sprays in each vial.

The brand states the spray is typically effective within 15 minutes. Then, the effects last for 1 to 3 hours after that. Over time, you’ll be able to customize your serving size as you get familiar with your preferences and needs.

Best CBD Products Compared

CBD Products for Anxiety Compared

Finding the best CBD products from top-rated CBD oil brands depends on your particular goals, but this list compares each CBD product side by side to help you make the ideal choice.

NameCategorySizeCost
Papa & Barkley Hemp Releaf DropsCBD Oil - Whole Plant Full-Spectrum900mg CBD 30ml bottle, 1ml per 30mg serving$$
Charlotte’s Web Daily Wellness CBD GummiesCBD Gummies1,500mg CBD in a 60-count container, 25mg per gummy$$
Different CBD Flower Strains for AnxietyCBD FlowerCBD and THC vary by strain$
Sun God Medicinals Organic Heka Worry & Fear Hemp TinctureCBD Oil - Whole Plant Full-SpectrumApproximately 500mg CBD 30ml bottle, 1ml per 16.6mg serving$
Tetra Labs GoldMist CBD Oral SprayCBD Isolate100mg CBD 3.5ml vial, one spray of approximately 1.25mg CBD$

CBD for Anxiety FAQ

CBD for Anxiety FAQ

Note: the answers to these questions are highly subjective. What works for one individual may have the opposite effect on another.

What is the recommended dosage of CBD for anxiety?

Since the recommended dosage varies so widely from person to person, there’s no one-size-fits-all answer. Instead, several factors influence the appropriate CBD serving size. These factors include a consumer’s weight, metabolism, severity of anxiety, and the type of CBD product in question. The CBD concentration in the product may also play a role.

It’s important to start with a low dose and then gradually increase as you need. If you’re unfamiliar or new to CBD, take half the recommended serving size on the suggestions. Monitor how your body responds until you discover the serving size that works best for you.

For reference, a general starting point is 20-40mg CBD per day, starting in 2.5mg to 5mg doses.8 Some may find relief at lower serving sizes, while others need more substantial doses. Give the CBD time to build up in your system, then reassess its effects over a period of multiple weeks.

Ultimately, finding the right CBD dosage for anxiety is a personal journey. What works best for one may not be the same for another. Proceed with caution, monitor your responses, and take it slow and easy as you determine your ideal serving size.

What is the best ratio of CBD to THC for anxiety?

The optimal ratio of CBD to THC for anxiety can vary from person to person as well. Individual responses to these cannabinoids differ. However, many consumers find a CBD-dominant product with low THC is most suitable for anxiety management.

A common recommendation is a product with a high CBD to THC ratio, such as 20:1 or 10:1. The CBD content here is significantly higher than the THC content, making it suitable for certain symptoms like anxiety.

Conversely, some consumers may find value in low levels of THC, like a 1:1 CBD to THC ratio. The key is to start with a CBD-dominant product, monitor your response, and adjust as needed.

Are certain consumption methods better than others for anxiety?

Different methods have varying onset times, durations, and bioavailability, which can influence their suitability for anxiety management. It can also depend on personal preference and the specific effects you’re seeking. Consider edibles vs. smoking vs. other methods, or even experiment with ones you find interesting. You’ll discover your preferred consumption method for anxiety over time.

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Can you overdose on CBD?

In short, you can’t overdose on CBD, but there’s more to know about the topic. Everyone’s body responds differently to varying compounds, and CBD is no different.

Is CBD legal everywhere?

In the United States, the legal status of CBD is complex. The 2018 Farm Bill legalized the cultivation of industrial hemp as long as it contains less than 0.3% THC. However, individual states may have their own regulations, and some have stricter rules. Be sure to research the cannabis and CBD laws in your local area.

How long does CBD take to work?

The onset time of CBD’s effects varies by consumption method, consumer, and other individual factors. It’s important to note that CBD’s effects are often subtle, and consistency may help you feel compounding effects. For example, a daily CBD routine will make CBD more effective than taking it once.

Are there any side effects of CBD?

CBD may deliver some mild side effects, including dry mouth, constipation, and dizziness or fatigue. Monitor your serving sizes appropriately to minimize the risk of side effects from CBD.

Does CBD make you feel spacey?

CBD doesn’t produce intoxicating effects, so it’s generally not associated with making users feel “spacey” or disoriented. It’s non-intoxicating, so it doesn’t alter your perception, cognition, or consciousness.9 Most users report CBD helps them feel more relaxed and calm without impacting their mental clarity. 

Do you swallow CBD oil?

Yes, you can swallow CBD oil tinctures. You cannot swallow CBD vape oil. You can do so after placing drops under your tongue for 30 to 60 seconds for longer, more impactful effects than just applying the oil sublingually. You can also swallow the oil immediately. It may have a slower effect onset, but the method is more suitable for longer-lasting effects.

Is it okay to eat or drink after taking CBD oil?

Yes, it’s generally fine to eat or drink after taking CBD oil. You can take it with or without food. Eating with or after taking CBD may slow down the absorption in your digestive system. This may be beneficial to those who want a slower onset of effects and a longer duration.

Conversely, taking CBD oil on an empty stomach may result in a quicker effect onset and a shorter duration overall.

References

  1. Sharpe L, Sinclair J, Kramer A, Michael, Sarris J. Cannabis, a cause for anxiety? A critical appraisal of the anxiogenic and anxiolytic properties. Journal of Translational Medicine. 2020;18(1). doi:https://doi.org/10.1186/s12967-020-02518-2 ↩︎
  2. Wright M, Di Ciano P, Brands B. Use of Cannabidiol for the Treatment of Anxiety: A Short Synthesis of Pre-Clinical and Clinical Evidence. Cannabis Cannabinoid Res. 2020;5(3):191-196. Published 2020 Sep 2. doi:10.1089/can.2019.0052 ↩︎
  3. Linck VM, da Silva AL, Figueiró M, Caramão EB, Moreno PR, Elisabetsky E. Effects of inhaled Linalool in anxiety, social interaction and aggressive behavior in mice. Phytomedicine. 2010;17(8-9):679-683. doi:10.1016/j.phymed.2009.10.002 ↩︎
  4. Mukarram M, Khan A, Andleeb Zehra, Choudhary S, Naeem M, Aftab T. Biosynthesis of Lemongrass Essential Oil and the Underlying Mechanism for Its Insecticidal Activity. Springer eBooks. Published online January 1, 2021:429-443. doi:https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-58975-2_18 ↩︎
  5. Kamal BS, Kamal F, Lantela DE. Cannabis and the Anxiety of Fragmentation—A Systems Approach for Finding an Anxiolytic Cannabis Chemotype. Frontiers in Neuroscience. 2018;12. doi:https://doi.org/10.3389/fnins.2018.00730 ↩︎
  6. Janda K, Wojtkowska K, Jakubczyk K, Antoniewicz J, Skonieczna-Żydecka K. Passiflora incarnata in Neuropsychiatric Disorders-A Systematic Review. Nutrients. 2020;12(12):3894. Published 2020 Dec 19. doi:10.3390/nu12123894 ↩︎
  7. Brock C, Whitehouse J, Tewfik I, Towell T. American Skullcap (Scutellaria lateriflora): a randomised, double-blind placebo-controlled crossover study of its effects on mood in healthy volunteers. Phytother Res. 2014;28(5):692-698. doi:10.1002/ptr.5044 ↩︎
  8. MacCallum CA, Russo EB. Practical considerations in medical cannabis administration and dosing. European Journal of Internal Medicine. 2018;49(49):12-19. doi:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ejim.2018.01.004 ↩︎
  9. Batalla A, Bos J, Postma A, Bossong MG. The Impact of Cannabidiol on Human Brain Function: A Systematic Review. Front Pharmacol. 2021;11:618184. Published 2021 Jan 21. doi:10.3389/fphar.2020.618184 ↩︎

The information in this article and any included images or charts are for educational purposes only. This information is neither a substitute for, nor does it replace, professional legal advice or medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you have any concerns or questions about laws, regulations, or your health, you should always consult with an attorney, physician or other licensed professional.

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