What Are Terpenes, and Why Are They Important?

What Are Terpenes, and Why Are They Important?

Terpenes are the chemical calling cards of the natural world.

They are the volatile organic molecules secreted by flowers that shout “visit me!” to bees buzzing in your garden, they are the carriers of the pitch-perfect fragrance you catch when hiking through a pine forest, they are the carriers of that concentrated scent you inhale when the budtender whips the lid off a container of cannabis at a dispensary, and when herbalists tout the power of aromatherapy through “essential oils” from herbs and plants, they’re talking terpenes.

If there were such a thing as smell-o-vision, terpenes would be its A-list stars.

Terpenes scintillate (or scare) for a good reason. Many creatures navigate the world with their noses, and smell—along with its close cousin, taste—unite memory and learning centers of the brain. Even nasally challenged humans associate particular aromas with happy or comforting experiences, like that cinnamon thing mom had going for the holidays. However, they also can serve as warning signs: the stink in stink (or shield) bugs is their terpene reminder, “Don’t tread on me.”

Many terpenes are sticky and odorous to protect the plant that secretes them. Hence, the ubiquitous funky fragrance of cannabis sativa.

Upwards of 100 different terpenes have been identified in cannabis, and this aromatic advance guard can help you distinguish between various strains and their effects.

For instance, myrcene, which smells musky or earthy, is associated with a sedative effect; myrcene-heavy indica strains make you collapse in-da-couch. The citrusy scents of a limonene in a strain, on the other hand, signal an opportunity to brighten your mood and ’tude. Strains that contain the aptly named pinene are said to boost alertness and memory, and peppery caryophyllales often waft from CBD-heavy strains than can help ease a variety of ailments.

There are dozens more scents and sensibilities to explore. Just like a honeybee seeking out its favorite terpene-laden flower, you can sidestep confusing strain names and learn to select cannabis by associating the effect you’re after with the fragrance of the associated terpene. Let terpenes be your guideposts along the cannabis trail: They can help you follow your nose to your preferred destination. This cannabis color-wheel graphic from strain database Leafly associates the major terpene fragrances with their therapeutic and psychotropic effects.

And cannabis terpenes are not just another pretty or putrid smell. The psychoactive properties of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and anti-inflammatory qualities of cannabidiol (CBD) get all the credit for the potency of pot, but there is more emerging evidence for what is called the “entourage effect,” in which terpenes enable, enhance or moderate the high—and the health effects—of cannabis.

The landmark study Taming THC, published in the British Journal of Pharmacology, details how various terpenes can limit the downsides of cannabis (dopiness, anxiety) and amp the good (memory, concentration, joy). So if you’re not making terpenes part of your cannabis experience, you’re probably missing out on important information about brain and body benefits.

Which strains work best for you? There’s only one sure way to find out: See if they pass your sniff test.

Image source: Pixabay

The Clear’s Secret to Amazing Natural Flavors for Our Many Award-Winning Concentrates

The Clear’s Secret to Amazing Natural Flavors for Our Many Award-Winning Concentrates

Let’s talk terps—and other magical molecules that plants produce.

We’ve already shared with you the secrets behind The Clear™’s cultivation and extraction techniques that yield the purest concentrate on the market. But what happens once we’ve made our ultra-clean, golden extract? How does our obsession with quality impact the array of luscious flavors our discerning customers seek out?

To bring our true-to-life flavors into The Clear™, we use naturally-derived terpenes and flavonoids. And our advanced vape hardware elevates taste to the next level.

Bring Out the Funk, and the Fruity Flavors, Too

While terpenes are what give cannabis strains their singular flavors and fragrances, they can be found throughout the plant kingdom—the immediately identifiable scents and flavors found in tart lemons, icy mint, savory thyme, spicy pepper and many more herbs, spices and fruits.

Flavonoids give fruits and vegetables their bright colors. Both types of compounds have been shown to have many health benefits.

So far, scientists have discovered more than 200 terpenes and over 20 flavonoids in cannabis plants alone, ranging from classic skunky scents to sweet, fruity notes.

Many other companies inject synthetic terpenes into their extracts. But our award-winning flavors come from natural plant sources, not a factory. And just as our extraction process distills our oil to its purest form, our terpene and flavonoid extraction process also draws out the best, most concentrated form of natural flavor.  

As a result, the delectable flavors are true to the strains and fruits they are drawn from. Everyone’s taste buds are different, so we’ve created a dozen fruit flavors to please every palate, as well as five special flavors that pay tribute to some of the most popular cannabis strains around.

Our award-winning concentrate array starts with the cannabis flavor line, which runs the gamut from sweet-and-piney XJ-13, to pungently sour, salty and sweet OG, peppery Golden Goat, the citrus-minded Lemon Haze (also available in Clear™ CBD) and the terpene-free neutral Lobster Butter, which is an ideal option for edible applications.

Tantalizing fruit flavors:

    • Blue Raz is tart, yet sweet and mouth-watering, like cotton candy or a lollipop.
    • Red Apple combines the full bouquet of the orchard with a long, sweet finish.
  • Pure Pear’s soft sweetness tastes fresh-picked.

And the list goes on (*-also featured in our Clear™ CBD lineup):

Juicy Potent Pineapple*; ripe, sweet Blueberry*; tangy, sweet Lime Sorbet and Lemon Lime*; bright, rich Orange Cream*; juicy, soda-inspired Grapevine; super-ripe and deep Strawberry*; balanced, smooth Banana Cream; and the complex and satisfying Strawberry Banana.

The Clear’s Stellar, Straightforward Vape Tech  

When it comes time to consume, our vaporizer again exemplifies our desire to be straightforward and transparent, while implementing the most advanced technology. Our vape hardware is precision-made from medical-grade stainless steel, ceramic and glass. That’s it. No fibers, glues or chemicals.

We go to great lengths to make sure that when our customers pick up a Clear™ vape, they can tell right away that they’re getting the cleanest experience on the market. There’s no itchiness in the throat or lungs—just a smooth experience with consistent, flavorful and supremely effective results.

As it should be.