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What’s in my Vape? Distillate vs. Live Resin Vapes


Chances are, your local Massachusetts dispensary carries more than a few different vape options for you to choose from. Hardware options include reusable batteries with cartridges, high-voltage dab pens, disposable models and more. But when it comes to what’s inside, will you be looking at distillate or live resin vapes?

Located off of 495 in Lowell, MA, Smyth Cannabis Co. is the most popular dispensary for distillate and live resin vapes in Andover, Ayer, Billerica, Burlington, Chelmsford, Nashua, Dracut, Groton, Haverhill, Lawrence, Littleton, Lowell, North Andover, North Reading, Reading, Stoneham, Tewksbury, Tyngsborough, Wakefield, Westford, Wilmington, Woburn and the surrounding towns.


What is Distillate?

Cannabis distillate is a refined cannabinoid oil free of taste, smell and flavor. Unless otherwise indicated, most readily-available flavored vape carts are made of distillate. Distillate vapes are relatively inexpensive and may contain up more THC than live concentrates, as they are more refined.

How is Distillate Made?

In short, cannabinoids such as THC are isolated from plant matter and then concentrated into a pure liquid form using heat and vacuum technology. Terpenes are destroyed during this process and must be added back into the potent solution after distillation.

Distillate vapes may be flavored with terpenes derived from either cannabis plants or other organic sources. You can find distillate vapes that mimic the flavor of your favorite strains, or distillate vapes that don’t taste like cannabis at all.

What Does it Mean When a Vape is “Live?”

Live resin vapes are made from cannabis plants that have not been cured.

During curing, harvested cannabis plants are laid out or hung up to dry and age for up to several weeks. This reduces moisture, chlorophyll and excess sugars inside of the buds, but also degrades some of the sensitive terpenes and other natural compounds.

With Live resin and live rosin vapes, the process of curing is skipped and plants are instead flash frozen immediately after harvest.

Live Resin Vapes

Live resin vapes are made by flash-freezing freshly harvested plants for up to 48 hours in order to preserve their terpene profiles. After that, solvents such as butane and propane are used to extract both terpenes and cannabinoids.

Live Resin vs. Live Rosin

Contrarily, manual extraction methods such as dry sifting and ice water extraction may also be used in place of solvents. Pressure and low heat are then applied to concentrate the extracted matter. Solventless concentrates made from flash-frozen cannabis plants are known as live rosins.

The method of extraction is the only thing that differentiates live resins from live rosins. And while live resin vapes tend to contain slightly more THC than live rosins, they usually come at a higher price tag due to the complex extraction process required to make them.

Cured Resin

Cured resin vapes are made using cured buds that have been dried and aged.

When it comes to flower, smoking cured bud provides a smoother and much more enjoyable experience. However, the difference between smoking cured resin vs. live resin concentrates is more subjective, as there is no substantial difference in potency or quality.

Which Should You Choose?

  • Price Point — Distillate vapes will almost always be the most affordable option due to the fact that that the integrity of the plant does not need to be preserved. Distillate can be made with trim, shake and low-testing buds, even from a blend of different strains. All that will remain after the distillation process is THC in pure liquid form.
  • Flavor / Terpenes — Live resin vapes are going to taste like weed. Terpenes are preserved from the plant to bring you a similar, yet more potent, experience to smoking flower. If you find your favorite strain available as a live resin cart, you’ll probably be stoked with the results. Contrarily, if you do not like the taste of weed, you can easily find a cartridge that’s been flavored to taste more appealing
  • Potency  — If testing strength is what you’re looking for, you may want to choose a distillate vape. It is very common in the Massachusetts recreational market to find distillates testing well into the 90% range.

Visit Smyth Cannabis Co. For The Best Distillate & Live Resin Vapes in MA

Whichever type of vape you prefer, you can find it at an unbeatable price at Smyth Cannabis Co. Conveniently located right off of I-495 in Lowell, MA, our recreational dispensary carries top quality vapes, concentrates, flower and more. We’re proud to offer our own line of distillate vapes, flavored with terpenes from both your favorite strains and other botanical blends. Live resin vapes are also be available from Fernway and other brands you love.

Check out our menu to see what we have in stock today!