Cannabis Science

What is Live Resin?

live resin on white paper

There are tons of weed products out on the market and if you’re new to the weed world, you may get confused. One popular product is live resin. If you’re wondering what is live resin, you’ve come to the right place. Here’s what we know.

Photo: Unsplash 

What Does Live Resin Mean? 

Live resin is a type of potent and flavorful weed concentrate that is typically extracted in a lab. While the THC concentration may vary among products, it’s typically between 20% and 50%. 

The resin itself is usually made by the plant, specifically in the trichome.

According to Healthline, “The resin found in cannabis plants appears as either a sticky secretion or a powdery substance and can present in a variety of colors.” However, live resin is commonly yellow. 

Even though there are many types of weed concentrates, people love live resin because they describe it as flavorful. This is due to its high terpene content. 

What is the Difference Between Live Resin and Reclaimed Resin?

You may have seen some stoners say that they can get their own resin and you’re probably wondering how. Chances are they are referring to reclaimed resin. Reclaimed resin is a substance that is left over after smoking cannabis. 

According to Healthline, people generally use it to avoid waste but it’s not so great. They said, “While you may still get high from smoking cannabis reclaim, it’ll probably be weaker than the high from pure cannabis or concentrated products like hash or rosin”

In addition to that, it’s not pure resin. Reclaimed resin often contains harmful byproducts of smoke such as ash and tar. 

We don’t recommend using reclaimed resin. Not only are there harmful compounds, but it’s also harsh and can give you negative side effects such as headaches and difficulty breathing according to Healthline. 

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How to Make Live Resin 

It is typically extracted in labs. Chief Technology Officer, Nick Tennant from Precision Extraction Solutions, gave an overview of the process:

  1. Harvest the flowers and put them in a vacuum-type food saver device. Freeze them right away between the temperatures of -10 degrees and -40 degree Celsius. Make sure the weed plant is at its peak “ripeness” so that you get the maximum amount of terpene, flavor, and smell.
  2. Extract the resin by using hydrocarbons. Hydrocarbons take the cannabinoids and terpenes. 

According to Mike from RM Extracts, they follow roughly the same procedure. At RM Extracts, the flowers are frozen and the resin is extracted while it’s cold. Mike added that they like to keep their solvent (the product used to extract the resin) cold too. Interestingly, Mike said that the process of curing the resin takes about 2 weeks!

After RM Extracts get the desired resin, they have to conduct tests on it to make sure that it is safe for the public. For example, they test to see if the solvent used has been effectively removed. 

What Do You Do With Live Resin?

There are many things you can do with live resin. The most common way stoners use it is by dabbing or vaping it. We already have a detailed guide on how to dab live resin. However, to summarize all you have to do is put the live resin on the dab nail or into the bowl of the dab pen. We recommend heating it to a low temperature for a better experience.

If you’re interested in vaping it you can go to a dispensary for a live resin cartridge for your vape pen. 

In addition to that, you can add some live resin to your bong. Just add it to the bong bowl and fire it up as normal. Due to the THC concentration, you should be enjoying a potent high this way. 

Finally, you can add a little to your blunt before you start smoking it. There are probably other things you can do with this concentration, feel free to ask around. 

Remember, live resin is a weed concentrate that is high in THC and therefore potent. If you’re new to weed, concentrates are not usually recommended. It’s not because it’s harmful but the effects may be overwhelming for new users. 

Is Live Resin Safe? 

Live resin is considered safe. However, it’s important to get your product from a reputable dispensary or producer. The reason is you don’t want a ton of solvent in your final product. Reputable establishments test their resin before it hits the market to make sure there aren’t a lot of solvents left in the final product. 

There will always be a little solvent left in the product. However, having a lot of solvents left can give you negative side effects. For example, one of the solvents commonly used is butane. According to LabPlex, “The risks of butane are highly debated since the medical community is unsure of its long-term effects. However, the few studies on the dangers of butane do cite organ failure and cardiac issues from extreme high exposure.”


What is live resin? It is a potent weed concentrate that is commonly dabbed but can be used in a variety of other ways. It’s described as flavorful, due to its terpene content. It is usually extracted and processed in a lab from frozen marijuana plants. Even though it’s commonly thought to be safe to use live resin, stoners are urged to buy it from reputable dispensaries. 


About Trevann

Trevann is Stoner Rotation’s Jamaica-based lead writer for the Science section of our cannabis blog. She graduated with honors receiving her Bachelor of Science degree in Molecular Biology from the University of West Indies, Mona. For the last three years, she has covered some of the biggest questions around cannabis and health underpinned with research from supporting studies, medical journals and scholarly articles. Got something on your mind? You can reach her at [email protected].