In order to be used by the body, CBD must be absorbed into the bloodstream and remain in circulation long enough to target the parts you want to be targeted. CBD, like many other compounds, is basically just a molecule and is measured in milligrams. The dosage of CBD products is usually measured in milligrams and is a measurement of the quantity of something taken. For example, if you take one milliliter (ML) or one dropper of Soul Blossom’s 1350mg tincture, it will provide a dosage of 45mg CBD. A half dropper would contain a dose of roughly 22.5mg of CBD. 


Bioavailability refers to the actual proportion of the given dose that ends up in the bloodstream to be used by the body. Bioavailability of CBD is the percentage of the dose of CBD that makes it to the bloodstream.

This is one of the many things that complicates and confuses newer users in determining the effective dosage of CBD. Getting CBD to work for you is generally dependent on how it’s introduced. Whether you vape or smoke flower, use tinctures, consume edibles, or take a CBD bath bomb, each method will offer a unique bioavailable percentage.


At its baseline, eating (or swallowing) CBD will generally provide the lowest natural bioavailability. This is due to what’s known as first pass metabolism, which essentially passes the rather large molecule of CBD through the liver before allowing it to get to the bloodstream. The first pass process strips away valuable milligrams of CBD. Research has shown bioavailability as low as 5% to 10% from traditional products, which means if you take a 25mg capsule, about 2.5mg will make it into the bloodstream.

The good news is this natural process can be altered. CBD is generally a large (up to 4500 nanometers) hydrophobic (water hating) molecule, so in its raw form, it is mostly blocked from entering the bloodstream through first pass. Using a state of the art process of nanoemulsification, the molecules can be broken down to a much smaller size (~25 nanometers) and transformed into a more water-friendly state. This skips first pass and dramatically increases the bioavailability of nanoemulsified CBD. This increases the bioavailability by 200% or more over traditional oil forms. Ingested nanoemulsified CBD rivals inhalation in bioavailability.

If you are considering using edibles or capsules, just make sure that they contain nanoemulsified CBD oils. They are initially more expensive, but in the long run, they will save you a lot of money as they provide far superior bioavailability. This means you are getting more bang for your CBD milligram buck. All of Soul Blossom’s Edibles use nanoemulsified CBD oil. 


Sublingual CBD, such as tinctures, increase bioavailability to roughly 18% to 35% as long as the liquid is held under the tongue for 60 seconds or more. So a full (1ml) dropper of tinctures that provides a 45mg of dose CBD can deliver up to 15-17mg of bioavailable CBD, which is primarily absorbed directly through the sublingual glands under the tongue (and avoids first pass metabolism). Sublingual CBDs are often favored due to their natural ease of use and precise dosing. They can be used in the morning or evening (or both) and are very discreet.


Inhalation provides the highest levels of natural bioavailable CBD, with ranges from 36% to 56%. Plus, it’s absorbed directly into the bloodstream through the alveoli in the lungs. This happens immediately and provides very rapid effects. Vaping or smoking 50mg of CBD flower can net up to 27-28mg of bioavailable CBD. It doesn’t last quite as long as other methods in the bloodstream, but there is no faster or quicker means of introducing CBD (in a natural, unaltered form) into the system. Of course, inhalation also has potential for body or lung damage as well, so that can be a negative factor for some people. It’s also not the most discreet method available, but it is a viable option. 


Topicals, gels, salves, bath bombs, and lip balms are all very popular. Since there are  CBD receptors in the skin, these products generally have pretty good bioavailability too. They can be somewhat difficult to dose compared to other methods, but studies have shown bioavailability to be about 45%. Oftentimes they are used for targeted areas (such as knee or shoulder pain) and can be very effective for local usage or application to target areas. 


Besides nanoemulsification, there are other ways to increase the bioavailability, or at the very least enhance the effects of CBD. For example, how products are prepared can have a significant impact. 

Hemp plants contain many other phytocannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids that are beneficial to humans. Many Soul Blossom products have a foundation of broad spectrum, THC-free and phytocannabinoid-rich hemp oil (unlike other THC-free products made from CBD isolates). Broad spectrum oils preserve the good cannabinoids that work together to create a synergistic greater sum of all parts effect. This is commonly referred to as the entourage effect of CBD or hemp. (For more on the entourage effect, read this post.) CBD isolate-based products contain only CBD and none of the other phytocannabinoids.

Getting CBD to work for you is generally dependent on how it’s introduced.

In the end, it is  still about reaching your personal effective dose, but it’s really important to keep bioavailability in mind in the process. The way you take your CBD is a matter of personal choice, but the biology and science of how it affects you is not. If you determine that you need 25-35mg of daily bioavailable CBD for the relief you desire, your product choices will need to reflect that. It’s not just the milligrams printed on the side of the bottle.