What is CBD? A Beginner’s Guide

There are endless questions surrounding CBD - What is CBD? What does CBD do? How can you use CBD? Here we take it back to the basics for those just getting started with CBD, the ins and outs of its uses, and how YOU can use it to it's full potential

19 May 2022

  • CBD Guides
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The use of CBD products has surged in popularity in recent years. Oils, gummies, vapes, skincare – it’s in everything! You may have heard about it through your favourite blogger, seen it on social media, or notice it being sold in health stores…

…But what actually is it?

There are a lot of unanswered questions surrounding CBD and what it does, the different types of CBD products, and whether CBD is legal to use in the UK.

So we’ve stripped it back to the basics, telling you how you can make the most of your CBD products and how to start using it – ideal for those that are unfamiliar with what it is.

What is CBD?

Let’s break it down…

CBD is short for Cannabidiol. Cannabidiol is a type of cannabinoid found in Cannabis. It is one of around 150 different types of cannabinoids that can be extracted from the cannabis plant, all with different names, qualities, and effects.

Being one of the most well-known extracts found in cannabis, CBD sometimes can be mistaken for THC – another compound found inside Cannabis. THC is usually found in recreational marijuana and known for being highly psychotropic.

Although recreational cannabis can contain both THC and CBD, these two compounds are not mutually exclusive.

CBD doesn’t affect your cognitive function unlike THC, but instead allows your body to balance and maintain its natural wellness, without any kind of mental stimulation.

What makes CBD different to recreational marijuana?

In a nutshell, CBD is non-psychotropic, meaning it will not make you high. The World Health Organisation says it safe for human consumption, and it is legal to use throughout the UK. THC on the other hand is psycho-tropic. It is likely to affect your cognitive function and give you that “high” sensation when you consume it.

With us so far?

How to use CBD products

CBD takes many forms. It can be used in a variety of different things:

  • Oils & Tinctures
  • Creams & Lotions
  • Capsules & Pills
  • Edible sweets
  • Vaping

Tinctures and CBD drops are taken orally, usually being the most effective under the tongue. Capsules and pills are also ingestible, along with edibles. Creams and lotions can be applied on the body wherever feels right.

As a beginner user of CBD products, we recommend starting off your journey with CBD drops. With a wide range of flavours to choose from, they are all easy and quick to use, and are a perfect way to dip your foot into the pool of CBD.

The most effective way to take CBD oil drops is to distribute the drops under your tongue and leave for a few minutes, then wash down with a glass of water.

If you’re not a fan of dropping the CBD oil directly under your tongue, you can try a more relaxed approach to begin with – we always say CBD dosage and techniques are different for everyone, so start with what you feel comfortable with.

Incorporate the natural CBD oil into your coffee, drizzle on your fruit, and peppermint CBD oil is perfect in a herbal tea.

To gain the most from CBD, it needs to be incorporated and used correctly in your lifestyle…

How much CBD should I take?

If you’re choosing CBD Oil Drops, we would say having between 10-30mg of CBD a day is a good place for a beginner. Our 1000mg bottles of CBD contain 33mg of CBD per pipette, so half a pipette a day would be ideal to have every day. You can have a few drops in the morning and a few drops at night to break it up, or have a full half in one go, it’s entirely up to you and what you feel like doing.

You will want to work upwards throughout your CBD journey. The daily recommended dose for CBD is up to 70mg a day, so don’t be scared to vary your dose as you go along, it’s your journey after all!

Everyone asks, “what’s the perfect CBD dosage for me?” but there is no definitive answer. Its effectiveness depends on things like metabolism and weight, and on how you ingest the CBD. That’s why we always recommend finding a starting point that suits you and working up, because everyone is different. For more on this, see our CBD dosage blog we’ve written to help you understand the correct dosage for you.

To use CBD products to their full potential, they should be used consistently. You may not notice wild differences within the first use, but when used regularly and properly, you will see what all the hype is about!

The short answer is yes…but there are some things to remember.

Although the stigma of CBD can scare a lot of new users, CBD is completely legal to consume in the UK.

Although the THC is removed from the CBD oil in the extraction process, there are minor traces found in CBD oil. But they are usually less than 0%, and not able to have any affect on your body. The legal limit for THC found in a CBD product is no more than 1mg per container, anything over this isn’t legal to be bought and sold in the UK.

CBD is considered a food supplement and can only be sold as such. No CBD brand or company can make medical claims based on CBD products, or recommend you use them instead of prescribed medicines.

It is always important to consult your doctor or healthcare professional before use if you are currently taking any medications, or under medical supervision.

While CBD is completely legal in the UK, we do also recommend checking any applicable local and/or international laws before traveling to other countries with products containing CBD.

Our recommendations

Everyone has a different reason for using CBD, and there are options for everyone depending on preference – perfect if you’re just starting out with CBD and want to test out a few different options or work out the dosage required for YOUR wellness.

At Green Stem, we’ve always been proud to offer variety, suitable for all. Our dosages for oils vary from 300mg to 6000mg, so starting small and working your way up to what you feel comfortable with is what we recommend (especially if you’re just finding your feet). There are a wide range of different flavours to choose from, from more earthy flavours to sweeter sensations, made to suit everyone’s pallet.

Everyone is different, and there is no ‘right way’ – there’s only your way.


  • CBD products promote a safe way of maintaining your body’s natural wellness
  • There is a difference between CBD, THC, and marijuana
  • With a variety of different products to choose from, it is easy to start using straight away
  • CBD is legal and safe to use throughout the UK
  • The amount of CBD to start with is what you’re comfortable with
  • There is something for everyone – flavours, dosage, product variety

We hope this has been a good introduction to CBD, so you feel a lot more in-the-know about what CBD is and how to use CBD products. If you’d like to find out more about CBD and it’s different uses, have a look at more of our blogs on CBD, it’s history and it’s uses.