Is CBD available over the counter? The answer isn't as simple as you think. If you're wondering where to buy CBD oil, we run you past your options. Looking to buy CBD gummies near me, but don't know the next steps? Follow our guide on HMHB as we take you through all the loops to finding a reliable seller! CVS is in the CBD business now selling the cannabidiol products in eight states.
Over the Counter CBD: Walgreens, CVS, and More…
Over the past few years, the CBD market has exploded. A recent report conducted by the Brightfield Group estimates that the industry will be worth an incredible 23 billion dollars by 2023. Not bad for a substance that was, until recently, largely unheard of. Over the past few decades, research into CBD has revealed that it possesses a wealth of potential benefits.
This research led to the 2018 Farm Bill, which ensured that hemp-derived CBD with a THC content of less than 0.3% can now be legally bought and sold.
Since then, support for the substance has continued to grow exponentially, and new CBD companies are springing up left, right, and center. The public is also becoming more aware of CBD, and a recent Gallup survey found that 39% of Americans believe that it should be available over the counter. However, the situation is not as straightforward as you might think.
Is CBD Available Over the Counter?
CBD products seem to be appearing everywhere. The cannabinoid is available as an oil, capsules, edibles, topicals, and is even being infused into food and beverages. However, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has only approved a single CBD product to date. This product is called Epidiolex, a CBD-based medicine which is currently licensed to treat two rare forms of epilepsy, Dravet syndrome and Lennox-Gastaut syndrome.
Epidiolex is prescription only, meaning that patients cannot access this medicine over the counter. Although many other CBD products can be bought without seeing a physician, these are not approved by the FDA and, therefore, are not subject to such strict regulations.
This lack of regulation poses a significant problem as a lot of the products on offer are of inferior quality.
They may contain more or less CBD than they claim to, as well as potentially being contaminated by pesticides and other harmful chemicals. Our best advice to anyone wanting to buy CBD without a prescription is to find a reputable brand which publishes third-party lab reports on its website. These lab reports will enable you to be sure that your CBD contains exactly what it says it does and nothing more.
Check out our article on the 10 Best CBD Oil Brands to find out more.
Where Can I Buy Over the Counter CBD?
In the past, if you wanted to buy over the counter CBD, you had little choice but to do so online. But, recently, major drug stores such as Walgreens and CVS have joined the party and started stocking CBD in selected stores.
However, these retailers are playing it safe when it comes to the products that they are providing. To better comply with FDA regulations, they have shied away from stocking oral CBD products such as oils, edibles, and infused food and drinks. Instead, they have opted for a range of topical products which can be marketed as skincare or beauty items rather than supplements.
Therefore, you won’t find traditional CBD oil on the shelves of your local Walgreens or CVS.
What you will find is a range of creams, patches, sprays, roll-ons, lotions, and even lip balms. Although these stores are clearly keen to jump on the CBD bandwagon, they are not going to risk upsetting the FDA, a choice that we have to respect.
Over the Counter CBD in Walgreens and CVS
Walgreens and CVS are not taking their decision to stock CBD lightly, and some stores will not be carrying any CBD products at all. At the time of writing, Walgreens has over the counter CBD available in around 1500 stores across nine different states.
You can buy CBD over the counter in Walgreens if you live in:
- New Mexico
- South Carolina
CVS is stocking CBD in just 800 of its 9800 stores. You might be able to find over the counter CBD if you live in one of the following states:
In a press release regarding its decision to start stocking over the counter CBD, a spokesperson from Walgreens said:
“The CBD related items we are planning to carry are non-THC containing topical creams, patches, and sprays. This product offering is in line with our efforts to provide a wider range of accessible health and well being products and services to best meet the needs and preferences of our customers.”
On the surface, this seems like a real plus for the CBD industry. But is it as positive as it seems?
Is CBD Over the Counter Safe?
A large proportion of Americans believe that CBD should be available without a prescription. While almost 40% of the general population are in favor, this figure rose to 61% for people who were familiar with CBD and its uses.
A third of people who are familiar with CBD think that the cannabinoid is very beneficial, and just under half believe it has at least some benefits.
However, there are some risks to consider, too. Apart from the lack of regulation, there is another good reason why over the counter CBD might not be as good an idea as it seems.
CBD is widely regarded as safe. It is non-intoxicating and rarely causes serious side effects. However, the fact is that CBD research is still in its relative infancy, and as it stands, we know very little about its long-term effects.
Some research suggests that using high doses of CBD over long periods could cause liver damage. It is also known to interact with various other medications, meaning that it could make them more potent without you realizing.
Another risk of using CBD involves people shunning conventional treatments in its favor. While in some cases, this is not likely to cause any significant problems, when it comes to life-threatening illnesses, it obviously becomes far riskier.
We strongly advise anybody wanting to use CBD to treat a specific medical condition to speak to their physician first. Doing this is still important, even if you intend to buy your CBD over the counter.
Over the Counter CBD in the UK
Despite over the counter CBD being something of a gray area in the US, it is far more widely available in the UK. Major pharmacy chain Boots (which is, incidentally, owned by Walgreens) and leading health-food store Holland and Barrett are now both stocking several CBD products. Unlike their American counterparts, these stores are also carrying oral CBD, including oils, capsules, and lozenges.
Although the market is no better regulated in the UK than the US, these products can be sold in the UK, providing they do not make any medicinal claims.
While this is great for British shoppers in terms of convenience, it is perhaps less advantageous when you consider the safety concerns listed above. There is a genuine danger that uneducated people could assume that because CBD is available over the counter, it is safe to use in any situation.
As the CBD market continues to grow, there is a greater need than ever to ensure that the public knows the potential risks of taking CBD, as well as the benefits. Although much has been written about the numerous health benefits of taking CBD, there is far less information available about the possible harms.
Read our article on the Side Effects of CBD to learn more.
Over the Counter CBD: Final Thoughts
As more and more CBD companies are emerging, it is no surprise that major drug stores such as Walgreens and CVS have decided to get onboard. However, these stores are playing it safe as far as their product lines go. They will only be stocking topical CBD products, for the time being at least.
Across the Atlantic, retailers have been a little bolder, and it is possible to buy oral CBD over the counter in high street stores such as Boots and Holland and Barrett. Since customers now have the option to simply walk into a shop and purchase CBD, it is more important than ever that the general public is educated about its effects.
If you want to buy CBD over the counter, it is wise to speak to a qualified healthcare professional first. This is even more important if you suffer from a chronic medical condition or take any other medication. It is essential to realize that while CBD has many benefits, it is not a substitute for proper medical care. Have a frank discussion with your physician to determine whether CBD is safe for you.
CBD Gummies Near Me: Where to Buy CBD Edibles For Sale?
I’ve been getting tons of questions lately about buying CBD gummies.
Chances are you’ve heard of the many benefits of CBD gummies and looked for local or online shops selling these treats.
I was in your shoes a few months ago, looking to come home on a Friday night and relax with some CBD gummies and my favorite book.
So I went to my local head shop and bought a colorful bag of rainbow gummy bears and tried a few at home — imagine my irritation when I felt nothing.
After doing some research, I found out that most people looking for CBD gummies for sale locally often find themselves with products that contain little to no CBD — and therefore no notable effects.
That’s because local stores are stocked up with brands selling mass-produced inferior quality CBD gummies at marked-up rates.
These products are often mislabeled or don’t contain the advertised amount of CBD.
Continue reading to learn where to find the best CBD gummies for sale.
Related: Learn more about the Top 10 Best CBD Gummies for 2022.
Where Can I Buy CBD Gummies Near Me?
CBD gummies are sold both locally and online. Below I go over both sources of CBD gummies and explain their pros and cons.
Buying CBD Gummies Locally
Your first thoughts are probably floating around your local head shop or one of the health stores that has just opened nearby.
And you’re absolutely right! You may find some CBD products there — including gummies.
There are three types of local vendors that sell CBD-infused goods:
- Head shops/smoke shops
- Local health stores
- Cannabis dispensaries (if you live in a state where cannabis is legal)
If you live in a legal state and have a cannabis dispensary near you, then you’re in the clear, at least when it comes to the quality of products and safety.
But most of the time, you’re going to find yourself deeply disappointed if you choose to buy from a local retailer. Here’s why:
The Dangers of Buying CBD Gummies from Local Vendors
There’s no shortage of aspiring “entrepreneurs” rushing to capitalize on the CBD hype. Unfortunately, there are no quality standards in place for buying CBD products in local stores.
Long story short, it’s the owner of the store who decides what products they choose to offer customers — even if these products are inferior and potentially dangerous.
Often, unaware customers end up paying 3–5x the price they would pay for CBD gummies online. Moreover, these products aren’t tested by a third party and have no quality thresholds to be able to sell in-store.
While it may be convenient to purchase CBD gummies at your local store, I don’t recommend buying from local head shops or health stores because they often fail to deliver the promised quality.
With cannabis dispensaries, quality is not a problem because these places have high standards for selling cannabis products. However, the problem with cannabis dispensaries is that they mostly sell marijuana-derived CBD gummies.
Even if you live in a state with a legal marijuana market, CBD gummies infused with more than 0.3% THC might not be an option. Some users just don’t like the psychoactive effects of THC because they don’t handle them well. Besides, if you’re buying CBD gummies for your kid, the last thing you want is to give them anything that contains significant levels of THC.
Buying CBD Gummies Online
Believe me. It’s worth the extra 1–2 days it takes to receive the bag of CBD gummies ordered online. Not only will you save more money in the long run, but you’ll also have the confidence that you’re using a safe and tested product.
Speaking of which, let me show you why it’s better to buy CBD gummies online than anywhere near you.
Why You Should Look for CBD Gummies Online
The majority of CBD products are sold online. Buying CBD gummies online is easy, convenient, and safe.
Not to mention the range of different CBD products. Online retailers offer CBD in every possible format, from tinctures to vape oils, capsules, topicals, and gummies.
When buying CBD online, you can purchase directly from the manufacturer. This allows you to learn more about the brand of your choice, check third-party test results for their lineup, and read more about how they farm their hemp, etc.
On top of that, you can quickly check the credibility of your CBD vendor. All you need to do is search the Internet for user reviews, recommendations, and potential complaints. If your brand has plenty of 5-star reviews with positive feedback from customers, you can give it a try.
On the other hand, if you see many poor reviews with lots of complaints about the quality of their CBD lineup and the overall customer service, it’s a sign that those guys can’t be trusted.
To make your purchase even easier, I’ve prepared a list of handy tips for online shoppers.
Top 3 Brands Selling CBD Gummies Near You in 2022
Finding a reputable company among hundreds of different manufacturers requires a lot of time and effort — and time is money.
If you don’t want to spend hours browsing through different CBD vendors, reading lab test results, and doing all the stuff around verifying the product’s quality, I’ve done the job for you.
Below I’ll show you my top 3 brands that offer CBD gummies for sale. Each of them has a proven track of satisfied customers, employs organic practices in their farming procedures, and provides 3rd-party lab reports to prove the label claims listed on the products.
1. Royal CBD Gummies
Get 15% off all Royal CBD products. Use code “CFAH” at checkout.
- CBD gummies are made with broad-spectrum extracts
- Contain 0% THC
- Available in 2 different strengths — 10mg and 25mg of CBD per gummy
- Each batch of product has been tested in an independent laboratory
- Vegan-friendly formula
- They’re priced higher than average
What I Like About Royal CBD Gummies:
Royal CBD is a premium manufacturer that uses simple formulas and the highest quality ingredients.
I use all Royal CBD products — it’s my go-to brand since I first started using them — but their gummies have won my heart because of three features:
- They’re made from CBD isolate; they’re guaranteed to contain 0% THC
- They’re a perfect match with my dosage requirements; 2 gummies per day are all I need for sufficient relief.
- They contain only natural ingredients; because of that, they taste better than most CBD gummies and are easily processed by the body.
I take Royal CBD gummies because I’m not a big fan of softgel pills and chewing on these gummy bears while sipping wine in the evening makes for the best relaxing ritual ever. At least for me.
2. Gold Bee CBD Gummies
- Assorted flavors (strawberry, cherry, tangerine, lemon)
- 30 tasty gummy bears per container.
- Made with Broad Spectrum CBD — 0% THC
- Vegan-friendly formula
- Less expensive than competitors
- Synergistic effects from the other cannabinoids
- Their taste is more herbal (hemp); some consumers may not like the flavor
What I Like About Gold Bee CBD Gummies:
Gold Bee is a company specializing in full spectrum & broad spectrum CBD supplements. Although they don’t offer the same quality as Royal CBD (and they have a scant selection of full-spectrum products), they have one of the most diverse product lineups in the industry.
Their gummies are no different. You can buy regular gummy bears and extra potency gummies. Each gummy contains 25mg of pure broad-spectrum CBD, which is great for people who want to benefit from CBD but cannot take ANY THC or would prefer to avoid it whenever possible.
My take on Gold Bee gummies? They work as advertised.
I’ve been using them to reduce anxiety and improve sleep, and they did the job well. I’m not a fan of their taste. But, if you like herbal notes and you’re looking for pure CBD gummies, then this company is a good option to consider.
- Their products are sourced from American-grown hemp
- You can order melatonin-infused gummies for better sleep
- They are THC-free
- Vegan-friendly formula
- Very affordable deals
- Their hemp isn’t organic
- Slightly lower quality than Royal CBD and Hemp Bombs
- Only available as CBD isolate — they lack the synergy offered by full-spectrum or broad-spectrum products
What I Like About CBDistillery CBD Gummies:
This Colorado-based company is one of the industry’s veterans. They were actually the first company I bought CBD from. I’m happy to confirm they haven’t lowered their quality standards since then.
Their gummies are made with CBD isolate, so what you’re getting is pure cannabidiol. You have the option to choose either CBD-only gummies or gummy bears infused with 2mg melatonin for improved sleep.
Each gummy contains 30mg of CBD. This is great potency, and considering the extra melatonin in the formula, they make for a strong relaxant effect, even if they don’t carry the full spectrum of cannabinoids.
My only concern is that their hemp isn’t organic, and I prefer full-spectrum or at least broad-spectrum extracts in my regime. Nevertheless, I understand some people might be allergic to certain hemp compounds, or they just don’t want to score a false positive on a drug test.
Tips for Buying CBD Gummies from Online Retailers
There are several things you need to know about before you decide to spend your money on CBD gummies from an online store. While cannabidiol can seriously improve the quality of your life, no two CBD products are the same.
Here’s what to look for when buying CBD gummies online.
1. Beware of Cheap CBD Gummies
Don’t buy on the cheap.
The production process of CBD gummies — from sourcing to sealing the final product — is costly.
Do you really think there are companies big-hearted enough to sell you a top-notch quality CBD extract without turning a profit?
I believe you know the answer to that question.
If you find gummies that significantly undercut the cost of the competition, you have to ask yourself where these costs are being cut to sell these products at such low rates. Usually, it’s the quality of the starting hemp that companies will cheap out on to produce cheap products.
Buying hemp from China or India is one way to do this — which is contaminated with things like heavy metals, pesticides, and other harmful chemicals.
2. Look for the “No THC” Stamp
CBD extracted from hemp plants contains less than 0.3% THC and is legal on the federal level under the 2018 Farm Bill. Products with a “No THC” stamp are guaranteed not to breach the 0.3% limit.
It helps you distinguish between cannabis-sourced CBD, which is still illegal in most states.
3. Look for Transparency & 3rd Party Tests
Everybody is trying to make money on the emerging CBD market.
But not everybody can provide a sufficient transparency level that would ensure that they don’t make that money at the cost of your health.
To make sure you’re getting potent CBD gummies made from organic hemp, look for third-party testing before you buy.
3 Key Features of High-Quality CBD Gummies
Now that you know where to buy CBD gummies near you and what to watch out for when buying CBD online, it’s time to learn about the key features of top-shelf quality CBD products.
1. Sourced from Organic Hemp
One of the primary reasons why CBD extracts are not that cheap is the way manufacturers source their cannabidiol.
Some companies use the American-grown hemp, while others still rely on the quality provided by European farmers.
Regardless of the country, just make sure the hemp is grown using organic methods and comes from nutrient-rich soil. The highest quality of the sourcing material ensures that the CBD gummies you purchase are top-notch as well.
2. Extracted Using Supercritical CO2
Most trustworthy CBD manufacturers use carbon dioxide to extract the CBD. The CO2 extraction technology allows for making potent extracts without using any toxic solvents in the manufacturing process. This makes the end product cleaner and much safer for consumption.
3. The Other Ingredients Are 100% Natural
CBD gummies need to pass through your digestive system before any of the CBD reaches the bloodstream and has an actual effect on you.
The last thing you want to do is burden your liver with unnecessary ingredients such as synthetic colorings, flavorings, preservatives or artificial sweeteners.
Make sure the other ingredients in your CBD gummies are 100% natural. Otherwise, eating CBD gummies for health benefits may be counterproductive.
CBD-Infused Gummies Benefits
CBD alone already has plenty of health benefits. So CBD-infused gummies also carry the same benefits:
Will CBD Gummies Make Me High?
Hemp-derived CBD gummies can’t make you high because they don’t have enough THC to produce any psychoactive effect. They can make you feel relaxed and relieved, but not high.
The abundance of CBD gummies on the market are made using broad-spectrum extracts or CBD isolate, which means they contain zero THC and thus can’t even result in a false positive on a drug test.
Are CBD Products Legal in My State?
As long as you buy hemp-derived CBD gummies, then yes — they are legal in your state. CBD products made from hemp are legal in all 50 states under the new Farm Bill.
The Final Verdict on Buying CBD Gummies Online vs. Locally
Before you type in “Where to find CBD gummies near me,” you should weigh the pros and cons and decide whether making a rushed decision is good for you in this case or not.
In my experience and numerous interviews with CBD users I’ve talked to, buying CBD gummies online is a much better option — it gives you access to a wider selection of products and allows you to get a detailed insight into the quality standards employed by your manufacturer.
How do you buy your CBD gummies? Do you agree with me on buying CBD online?
Nina created CFAH.org following the birth of her second child. She was a science and math teacher for 6 years prior to becoming a parent — teaching in schools in White Plains, New York and later in Paterson, New Jersey.
You Can Buy CBD At CVS Pharmacies In 8 States
Leading drug store chain CVS Pharmacy says it is now in the cannabis business. The pharmacy is selling CBD products in select locations throughout eight states.
“We have partnered with CBD product manufacturers that are complying with applicable laws and that meet CVS’s high standards for quality,” the company said in a statement.
CVS is selling a range of cannabidiol-containing products from brand Curaleaf including topical creams, sprays, lotions, and salves. CVS says it is not yet selling products intended for internal use, such as supplements or edibles, as regulations on products intended for internal use are still unclear in some key markets.
“We’ve been having dialogue with national retailers for many months now,” Curaleaf Chief Executive Officer Joseph Lusardi said to reporters Wednesday. “We’ve got a number of potentially exciting partnerships in the pipeline.”
The announcement saw immediate gains for Curaleaf, with a market value now at more than $2.6 billion, and according to Bloomberg, the stock had already gained 41 percent this year.