In today’s world, cannabis goes by many different names: marijuana, bud, Mary Jane, and weed. It also now comes in different forms, like edibles, joints and oil.

Cannabis remains the most popular drug in England and Wales, with 7.4% of adults between 16 and 59 having used the drug. The rise in use means more drug addiction and with more methods of consuming comes more experimentation.

Hash is one type of street cannabis that can be turned into an oil. Hash oil and other less common ways to take cannabis have become popular due to perceived benefits, changing attitudes to the drug due to calls for legalisation and curiosity around it.

If you are interested in hash oil, it’s important to know about its legal status, the benefits of hash oil and safety considerations. Find out what hash oil is, its uses and what it is used for below.


What is Hash Oil?

Hash is the name for the sticky brown substance that comes from the resin of the buds of the plant. What is known as weed is the dried leaves and buds from the plant that are smoked in joints.

Hash has a long history, going back thousands of years. The word is short for hashish, which is Arabic for grass. Trichomes are small resinous glands that exist on the surface of cannabis plants and through heat and pressure, they can be separated from the plant to become hash. Within trichomes are terpenes and cannabinoids – the substances responsible for the psychoactive and medicinal properties of the drug.

Hash is culturally important in areas such as the Middle as ancient civilisations in Egypt and Mesopotamia used the drug for religious rituals and in everyday medicine. It became more popular to smoke in the Middle Ages and trade and exploration allowed Europeans access to it.

Hash oil is a concentrate of hash and is sometimes called honey oil due to its golden-brown colour. It also goes by wax, dab and shatter. It is different from other cannabis oils such as CBD and THC as it is much more concentrated and therefore more powerful.


How is Hash Oil Made?

There are many approaches to creating hash oil that produce different results and effects.

Solvent-based Extraction

The most common type of solvent extraction is using Butane, creating Butane Hash Oil (BHO). This type of extraction is done by pressurising cannabis and liquid butane in a heated and sealed environment so that in the vacuum the butane evaporates. This leaves behind shatter, a type of hash that has a toffee-like appearance with a transparent surface. When heated, the vapour can be inhaled for a strong hit of cannabis.

Rosin Pressing

This type of extraction is solventless and involves using heat and pressure to separate the cannabinoids and terpenes from the hash. It is quite simple and can be done with a hair straightener and baking paper. This method is popular as it is fast and carries less risk as you are not working with alcohol or chemicals like butane. This method does produce a low yield, meaning a lot of hash is needed to produce a small amount of oil.

CO2 Extraction

This is an updated version of butane extraction and is deemed safer than its predecessor. CO2 is used in place of a solvent and heat and pressure turns it supercritical, which results in extraction. CO2 extraction produces purer results and is the best way to separate THC, cannabinoids and terpenes from each other.


The legality of cannabis oils in the UK is the subject of much debate and many opinions. In November 2018, medicinal cannabis was legalised in the UK, marking a step forward in the battle to have the drug become legal.

What does this mean for hash oil? Well, whether cannabis oil is legal or not comes down to its THC content. If THC levels exceed 0.2% then the oil is rendered illegal and cannot be consumed. Recreationally, cannabis cannot be cultivated, sold or consumed. It is a Class B drug and possession of it can end up with you spending 5 years in prison.


Types of Hash Oil

There are different types of hash oil on the market.

Full Spectrum

This type of hash oil contains not only CBD and THC but a wide range of cannabinoids, terpenes and plant lipids. It is seen as the most potent form and is anti-inflammatory, provides pain relief and helps with anxiety.

Broad Spectrum

Broad-spectrum oils contain other compounds from the plant such as cannabinol, terpenes and cannabichromene. Broad spectrum hash has less THC than full spectrum and so may not hold as many of the benefits.

Isolated Cannabinoids

Solvents are used to strip hash of all compounds and isolate cannabinoids. This creates a pure crystal form that can be put into oils and edibles. The benefit can be that the oil contains only what the manufacturer wants to be in – providing more clarity for buyers.


Is Hash Oil the Same as CBD?

No. CBD does not contain any THC and so doesn’t produce a high like hash oil. This means that CBD oil is legal to buy in the UK.


What is Hash Oil Used For?

Hash oil is used by many people due to its medicinal and creational benefits. These include:

  • Pain relief
  • Helps ease anxiety
  • Helps combat insomnia
  • Promotes calmness
  • Minimal side effects


Hash Oil Use and Safety Considerations

Hash oil safety has to be considered if you are looking at using products. Dangers can come from the production of chemicals and heat can be part of the process. These bring the risk of explosions and burns.

When it comes to using there are dangers with hash oil. Users of cannabis have found that it can adversely affect mental health, instead of easing your problems. Through chronic use of hash oil, there is a risk of addiction which may result in a trip to cannabis rehab as dabbing hash oil is much more potent. Teenage users are also thought to be more at risk as there are links to psychosis after repeated use of cannabis.


Find Out More About Hash Oil

Hopefully your most pressing questions, such as “What is hash oil?” and “Is it safe?” have been answered. It seems there are benefits of hash oil but its legality and potential dangers make it a risk to use.

Ocean Recovery is a private drug and alcohol rehab that provides help to people struggling. If you are concerned about cannabis addiction, then you should contact us to know more about our treatments – such as cannabis detox – to better prepare yourself for the recovery journey ahead.

For more info, call 0800 880 7596 today.

John Gillen - Author - Last updated: February 19, 2024

John is one UK’s leading professionals in the addiction recovery industry. Pioneering new treatment techniques such as NAD+ and ongoing research into new therapy techniques such as systematic laser therapy, John is committed to providing the very best treatment for people throughout the UK and Europe. During his extremely busy schedule, John likes to regularly update our blog section with the latest news and trends in the industry to keep visitors to our site as well informed as possible on everything related to addiction treatment.