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CBD Capsules Vs Softgels Vs Pills

CBD has gradually grown into a very popular self-care and wellness product. CBD is short for cannabidiol. It is a chemical that is extracted from the cannabis plant. Hence, it is a natural substance. It is used in various products such as oils, capsules, softgels, sprays, gummies, topicals and pills to give a calming and relaxing sensation.

Now, of course, many CBD based products have a wide variety of scope and usage. Therefore, it sometimes becomes difficult to differentiate between them. Below is a guide to help you distinguish between the most popular CBD products (which might seem similar) which include CBD Capsules, CBD Softgels, and CBD Pills.

What are CBD Capsules?

First, we have to understand what exactly a capsule is, in pharmaceutical terms. It is a solid form of medication consisting of two parts. The first part is the core medicine, which is in the form of a pill. Sometimes it is derived from raw isolates whereas sometimes it is derived from raw hemp plants. Isolates ensure that THC does not find its way into the CBD capsules. Remember that THC is the addictive and sedative part of the cannabis drug, which has the potential to cause addiction. Hence, it is necessary to ensure that it is not present in the CBD capsules and pills and even if it is present, then it is only present in is miniscule amount, so its harmful effects are minimized.

The second part of the CBD capsules is the supplement of the medicine which is in the form of a subtly hard container around the pill. There is a specific reason why capsules are sometimes used as opposed to pills, and this reason really outlines the difference between the capsules and pills. Sometimes the drug being used (in this case, CBD) cannot be compressed into the form of a solid. Therefore, capsules are used in this case. The most common types of CBD capsules are CBD Distillery capsules, Hemp Bombs CBD Capsules, CBD Drip EcoCaps, CBD Genesis Capsules, and CBDFX Capsules.

What is CBD Softgels (Gelcaps)?

CBD Softgels (Gelcaps) are similar to CBD capsules but there are also some differences. They are similar in a way that they both consist of two parts. The inner medicine part and an outer shell part. The peculiar thing about CBD Softgels (Gelcaps) is that their outer shell part is made of gelatin. Hence, it is soft, and that is how the name Softgels (Gelcaps) has been derived. It can be said that CBD Softgels (Gelcaps) is a particular type of CBD Capsules whose outer shell is made up of gelatin. There is no significant difference in the internal medicine part of CBD Capsules and CBD Softgels (Gelcaps).

What are CBD Pills?

CBD pills are basically CBD that has been compressed into a small solid form. They are more concentrated than their fellow capsule counterparts. They have no outer shell like CBD Capsules. Hence, it can be said that consumers are directly exposed to the CBD contents when they take pills.

One of the primary benefits of CBD pills is that they have the potential to reduce depression and anxiety. It is a very significant benefit as mental health issues are affecting many people nowadays, and awareness regarding it is gradually increasing. CBD has proven to be a somewhat effective treatment for these illnesses. It has been shown to have an anti-depressant and anti-anxiety effect on patients. The scientific reason behind this is that the chemical structure of CBD promotes the growth of serotonin, a neurotransmitter in the brain that is responsible for mood regulation.

Differences between CBD Capsules, Softgels and Pills

Based on the absorption rate

Generally speaking, CBD capsules are absorbed into the body quicker than CBD pills. The reason behind this is that the core medicine (inner part) of the capsules is already broken down into a smaller form (and is sometimes even in the form of a liquid).

Now all the body has to do is break down the outer shell, and then it can quickly absorb the core medicine into the bloodstream. Hence, its digestion is quicker for the body than that of the pills which are in solid form in the first place. In their case, first, they will have to be gradually broken down into smaller pieces by the body. Eventually, they will be broken down into liquid form so that they can be absorbed. Hence, if instant results are required or if the purpose of using CBD is time-sensitive, then CBD capsules should be used as opposed to CBD pills.

If we talk specifics, CBD capsules are usually absorbed into the bloodstream in a few minutes whereas CBD pills can take up to half an hour to be successfully absorbed into the bloodstream. Therefore, CBD capsules are more suitable for people with a hectic lifestyle and a tight schedule as opposed to CBD Pills.

CBD capsules can be taken anywhere and anytime and that is one of the primary reasons for their growing popularity. On the other hand, due to their relatively slower digestion rate, CBD pills are usually prescribed to be taken at particular times of the day, so their effects can adequately manifest.

Based on structure

CBD Pills are different from CBD Capsules and CBD Softgels (Gelcaps) in this way that they do not contain an outer shell. CBD Pills are just medicine that consists of a drug (CBD in this case) that has been compressed into a small solid form. There is a reason why they are made as small as possible. The reason is that smaller objects are more comfortable to swallow, so the small size of the pills makes it easier for the consumers.

Based on taste

CBD pills have a higher tendency to leave a slightly unpleasant aftertaste in the mouth as opposed to CBD Capsules. It is because the core medicine part is exposed to the tongue of the consumer in the case of CBD pills, whereas it is encapsulated in a tasteless outer shell in the case of CBD capsules. It causes CBD capsules to be mainly tasteless.

Based on dosage

There are also differences in the dosages of CBD pills and CBD capsules. CBD pills usually have a higher concentration of CBD per unit. CBD Capsules typically have around 10 mg of CBD per capsule, whereas CBD pills usually have approximately 30 mg of CBD per pill. Moreover, studies and usage have shown that CBD is slightly more effective when taken at higher dosages per time. Therefore, generally speaking, CBD pills might be more effective than CBD capsules in the long run.

Based on the form of CBD being used

Another aspect that makes CBD Pills different from CBD Capsules and CBD Softgels (Gelcaps) is that they (CBD Pills) usually use the concentrated crystal form of cannabis i.e. cannabinoid.

Based on consumption form

CBD capsules are generally swallowed. However, this is not necessarily the case for all CBD pills. There are also chewable CBD pills available. It makes CBD pills suitable for those consumers who do not prefer to or find it hard to swallow.

Based on digestion

The average digestive system is generally more resistant to CBD capsules than to CBD pills. It is because the ingredients of the pills are directly exposed (due to the structure of pills) right from the start of the consumption. It increases the chances of them causing some irritation in the stomach.


Hence, you can see that there are many forms in which CBD can be consumed. The most common types of oral consumption of CBD are CBD Pills, CBD Capsules, and CBD Softgels (Gelcaps). There are differences in these three forms in many ways. Hence, choosing which one to use amongst these three depends upon a variety of factors. If we analyze the differences, we can come to the following conclusions. CBD capsules are quick and easy to use. However, this causes them to be more expensive than CBD pills at most times.

Moreover, CBD capsules may also require refrigeration for preservation purposes due to their structure. CBD capsules are more effective for immediate results as their absorption rate is higher. However, in the long run, CBD pills are more effective due to their higher concentration. Due, to their outer shell, CBD capsules allow protection for sensitive ingredients (in case they are mixed with the CDB). Therefore, it is difficult to say which one is better as that highly depends upon the context of consumption.