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Rosin vs Resin: Important Differences to Know About

May 25th 2023

Rosin vs Resin: Important Differences to Know About

Rosin and Resin. What is the difference?

When a medical cannabis patient goes into a cannabis dispensary, they may be overwhelmed by the various types of products available, from marijuana flower, to edibles, topicals, oils, tinctures, and various forms of concentrates.

Two different cannabis products that are common to see in dispensaries are resin and rosin, which are two forms of cannabis concentrates. If one doesn’t know the difference, it can get confusing for people who are not cannabis connoisseurs.

Both live rosin and live resin are cannabis concentrates. What are the difference between these two cannabis concentrates? Is one cannabis product better than the other? Here we will explain rosin vs resin, and what the differences are between these cannabis concentrates for medical cannabis patients.

What are cannabis concentrates?

Cannabis concentrates are highly potent forms of cannabis that have been processed to extract the plant’s essential compounds, such as the plant’s cannabinoids and terpenes, into a concentrated form.

These concentrates typically contain significantly higher levels of cannabinoids, compared to traditional cannabis flower, and therefore will provide a more potent experience.

Various types of concentrate cannabis products include hash, shatter, wax, budder, distillate, rosin, and live resin, just to name a few of what cannabis consumers may see on a dispensary shelf.

When choosing their cannabis products, many people prefer consuming cannabis concentrates because of their potency, and they prefer not to smoke the plant material.

rosin vs resin

What is cannabis rosin?

Cannabis rosin is a type of cannabis concentrate that is produced through a process called rosin pressing. It is a solventless extraction method that applies heat and pressure to extract the resinous oils from cannabis flower or hash.

To create cannabis rosin, pressure and heat are applied to the cannabis plants, typically using a specialized rosin press machine.

The material is placed between two heated plates, and pressure is applied, causing the resin to melt and ooze out. Some people use a hair straightener and parchment paper when they are making rosin at home.

rosin vs resin

The resin is then collected and cooled, resulting in a sticky, translucent, or amber-colored substance known as rosin.

The rosin extraction process is popular among cannabis enthusiasts because of the rosin press; it does not involve the use of chemical solvents like butane or CO2, making it a safer and more accessible method of producing concentrates.

Additionally, live rosin process retains many of the terpenes and cannabinoids present in the original plant material, offering a flavorful and potent cannabis product.

Cannabis rosin can be consumed in various ways, including dabbing, vaporizing, or adding it to joints, bowls, or edibles. It is known for its high cannabinoid content and strong effects.

The quality of rosin can vary depending on factors such as the quality of the starting material and the extraction parameters used during the pressing and curing process.

What is live rosin?

Live rosin is a specific type of cannabis concentrate extracted from fresh, flash-frozen marijuana flower, or bubble hash. It is considered a high-quality and flavorful concentrate that captures the essence of the original plant and preserves terpenes.

The production process of live rosin involves several steps including harvesting them at their peak maturity, flash-freezing it at extremely low temperatures to preserve terpenes, and then extraction through a solventless process, most commonly using the pressure and heat method described above.

What oozes out of the flower is collected and cooled to form the live rosin.

Many medical cannabis patients like consuming live rosin because of its aroma, flavor, and potency, achieved by extracting from fresh, or fresh frozen cannabis material.

Because the production process is a lot more labor intensive, live rosin is often considered a premium and sought-after cannabis concentrate, and can have a big of a higher price tag due to these special attributes.

rosin vs resin

What is cannabis resin?

Cannabis resin is a concentrated form of the resinous trichomes found on the cannabis plant. Trichomes are small, glandular structures, or resin glands, that contain various cannabinoids, terpenes, and other important compounds in the plant. (Be sure to read our article on Trichomes: Determine Your Cannabis Quality)

Resin is produced by separating the trichomes from the cannabis material and compressing them into a solid or semi-solid mass.

This process involves collecting the trichomes by mechanical means, such as sieving or shaking, or through the use of chemical solvents to extract the resin. Various forms of marijuana resin include shatter, sauce, butter, butane hash oil, batter, and diamonds, and other concentrates.

The resulting resin final product can vary in color, texture, and potency depending on factors such as the strain of cannabis, the method of extraction, and the processing techniques used.

What is live resin?

Live resin is a type of cannabis concentrate that is made from fresh, flash-frozen cannabis flower or trim, and it is known for preserving the aromatic compounds and flavors of the original flower.

The production process of live resin typically involves harvesting plants at their peak maturity, flash-freezing (like rosin), and extraction using chemical solvents.

The biggest difference between live rosin vs live resin is that live resin uses solvents, whereas live rosin applies heat and strong pressure. Both live resin and live rosin involve a flash freeze of the plant before the extraction process.

Like live rosin, medical patients consume live resin for its potency and flavor profile; however, some medical cannabis patients may be concerned about the use of solvents, and worry about residual solvents being present in their medicine, so they will prefer to use live rosin.

What is the difference between cannabis rosin vs resin?

By now, you can see that resin and rosin are both concentrated forms of cannabis, but they differ in terms of how they are produced and their composition.

Here is an overview of rosin and resin, and how they differ:

Production Method

Resin is typically produced through the collection and compression of the resinous trichomes found on the cannabis plant. It involves separating the resin from the plant and forming it into a solid or semi-solid mass.

On the other hand, cannabis rosin is produced through a solventless extraction method called rosin pressing using high heat. It involves applying heat and pressure to flower buds and other plant matter to extract the resinous oils.

Extraction Process

Resin extraction often involves the use of mechanical means, such as sieving or shaking, or solvents to collect the resin. Cannabis rosin, however, does not use solvents.

Instead, it relies on heat and pressure to release the resin from the plant matter.


Resin is a broad term that encompasses various forms of resinous substances derived from the cannabis plant, and can have various consistencies, colors, and visual appeals.

Rosin uses pressing to extract the terpenes and cannabinoids from the original plant, offering a concentrated version very close to the composition of the original plant from which it was extracted.


Marijuana resin can sometimes contain impurities, such as residual material from the plant or contaminants, depending on the extraction process because of the use of solvents and chemicals.

People enjoy rosin, on the other hand, because it can be a purer form of cannabis concentrate since it does not involve the use of solvents.

However, the purity of both rosin and resin depends on the quality of the starting material.

rosin vs resin

How do you consume resin and rosin?

The consumption methods used for live rosin and live resin always involve a lot of heat.

Resin and rosin is most commonly consumed by using a dab rig (a process known as “dabbing”) to heat up the input material between 315°C (600°F) and 430°C (800°F) so that it creates a vapor to be inhaled.

To dab, you’ll need a dab rig, a banger to hold and heat the concentrate, a carb cap, and a torch.

People also use vaporizers to consume rosin and resin.

There are specific vaporizers designed to hold concentrate, or one can always purchase an empty cartridge and place their preferred resin or rosin in that cartridge for use in a vape pen.

Is one better than the other?

While it ultimately comes down to personal preference, many medical cannabis users will opt for live rosin products vs live resin or other extracts because it is a solventless process.

However, if you purchase resin products from a reputable brand, they will take measures to ensure that any remaining material that could be harmful will be fully minimized. This is why it is best to obtain a Certificate of Analysis (COA) of your products when possible.

Explore Cannabis Concentrates with Your Medical Cannabis Card

Compassionate Clinics of America has been working with people with various medical conditions to explore whether getting a medical marijuana card in their state is the best path for treatment for them. We serve residents of 24 states including Arizona, Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Illinois, Iowa, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, & West Virginia,. When you have a qualifying condition and you get a medical cannabis certification from a licensed physician, new options become available to you when exploring health and wellness.

Explore cannabis concentrates by getting your medical cannabis certification and medical marijuana card in your state. Reach out today to take this next step towards your well-being and enjoyment of life.

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