There’s no hard-and-fast rule about whether CBD oil is better than CBD gummies or vice versa. Some people find CBD gummies more convenient to use, while others prefer ingesting CBD oil because the dosage can be easily adjusted.

Little to no research suggests one is better than the other.

But because CBD is meant to be used consistently, you’ll want to choose a product you find easy and enjoyable. The more convenient it is, the more likely you’ll use it regularly.

Most importantly, you’ll want to buy a quality product, no matter what form it takes. Whether you opt for CBD oil or CBD gummies, it’s essential to pay attention to factors like quality, safety, and transparency when selecting a product.

CBD is popularly used via oils or tinctures. These liquids are generally swallowed.

When people refer to CBD oil, they usually talk about the oil you take orally (via the mouth) or sublingually (under the tongue).

But it’s worth noting that you also get CBD-infused topical oils, which can be applied or massaged into the skin.

How it works

Topical oils work differently from sublingual oils. While sublingual CBD enters the bloodstream via the digestive system, topical CBD oils work on the skin.

The idea behind sublingual administration — when a drug is placed under the tongue — is that the drug absorbs into the tiny blood vessels under the tongue, allowing the CBD to enter the bloodstream quickly.

This is opposed to simply swallowing and digesting the CBD oil, which means it has to go through the entire digestive process before it affects you.

However, it’s not entirely clear whether CBD does actually permeate the tissues in the mouth or whether it simply works through the digestive system.

According to recent research, CBD seems “moderately permeable” through the skin, which may be appropriate for treating skin concerns and muscular pain. However, if you’d like to use CBD for a more internal concern — such as anxiety or sleeplessness — use it orally.

Common uses

There are a range of popular uses of CBD.

Sublingual CBD oil is often used for:

Topical CBD oil is often used for:

Potential benefits

There are many potential benefits of CBD oil.

Studies suggest that it may help:

To date, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved one CBD-based product, Epidiolex, which is used to treat several seizure disorders as well as seizures caused by tuberous sclerosis complex (TSC).

Potential side effects

CBD oil is considered safe to consume, but it may cause some adverse reactions like:

  • changes in appetite and weight
  • diarrhea
  • fatigue

As with any health product, it’s important to opt for high quality CBD oil. Unfortunately, there are many low quality and mislabeled products on the market. To ensure you’re buying a decent product, read the labels of CBD products.

View our recommendations for the best CBD oils here.

How it works

Because CBD gummies are chewed and swallowed, they’re processed through the digestive system.

Common uses

Like sublingual CBD oil, CBD gummies can be used for a number of reasons, including:

Potential benefits

There’s more research on the potential benefits of CBD oil as opposed to that of CBD gummies. But CBD gummies can be used for the same reasons as oral CBD oil.

Potential side effects

The side effects of CBD gummies are the same as that of CBD oil.

One concern about CBD gummies is that they may be attractive to children, who might ingest a potentially dangerous amount of CBD.

Again, while CBD is generally safe, it is possible to take too much CBD. This can lead to adverse side effects.

If you purchase CBD gummies, be sure to keep them out of reach of children.

View our recommendations for the best CBD gummies here.

No matter whether you opt for CBD oil or CBD gummies, it’s important to choose a quality product from a reputable manufacturer.

You should always opt for a product that is third-party tested. This means that an independent lab tested the product to verify its contents.

Third-party testing is important because CBD products are sometimes mislabeled. In one study, only about 31% of the tested products were found to be labeled accurately.

You should be able to read the lab report — also called a certificate of analysis (COA) — on the company’s website. Email the company if it’s not on the website and ask for the COA.

When reading the COA, look out for:

  • labeling accuracy (meaning the CBD concentration is as stated)
  • testing for contaminants like heavy metals, molds, and pesticides
  • presence of other cannabinoids (like CBG, CBC, THC)

It’s also best to opt for a reputable company. Look out for:

  • customer reviews
  • whether they’ve been the subject of any lawsuits
  • whether they’ve received an FDA warning letter for mislabeling products

Not sure where to start? Look at our list of the best CBD brands on the market today.

CBD oil isn’t necessarily better than CBD gummies or vice versa. But if you choose between the two, consider what will be easier to use daily.

While CBD gummies have the convenience of a set dosage per serving, CBD oil allows you to adjust the exact dosage more easily. Many people prefer the taste of gummies over oil, but the reverse may also be true.

Whether you opt for CBD gummies or oil, it’s important always to purchase quality, third-party-tested products from a reputable seller.


Sian Ferguson is a freelance health and cannabis writer based in Cape Town, South Africa. She’s passionate about empowering readers to take care of their mental and physical health through science-based, empathetically delivered information.