Rosin is a solventless cannabis extract made using heat and pressure.
As marijuana gains in popularity, it’s no surprise that people are inventing new and innovative ways of using it.
Rosin is the latest craze in the world of marijuana. It’s made from a new technique that uses pressure and low heat to release a sap-like concentrate that can be used for dabbing.
Butane hash oil (BHO) extracts are still the most popular type of cannabis concentrate. But more recently, rosin has started to gain mainstream recognition.
Here, we explore the basics of rosin: what it is, how it’s made, and the benefits and risks.
What is Rosin?
Rosin is a popular kind of solventless cannabis extract. The manufacturing process, known as the rosin technique (or “rosin tech”), uses high pressure to produce a pure cannabis concentrate without the use of solvents.
Like other cannabis concentrates, rosin can be used in a variety of ways, including dabbing, edibles, and topicals.
The most common way to consume rosin is dabbing. Dabbing is a method of vaporizing marijuana extracts by applying them to a heated titanium or quartz attachment, and inhaling through a glass mouthpiece.
Rosin can also be cooked into edibles or made into tinctures, balms, or creams.
Like BHO, rosin can have different appearances and consistencies depending on the methods used and the quality of the cannabis extracted.
It may appear as a very hard and stable product, commonly referred to as shatter.
Rosin can also appear very soft and fluffy when extracted at a low temperature. This form of rosin is generally higher in terpene content, and is referred to as budder.
Rosin can even be a viscous liquid, but this generally occurs when it is extracted at too high of a temperature.
Origins of Rosin
The precise origins of rosin are not known, but some facts have been established.
The rosin technique is believed to have initially been posted to Instagram on a page called Soilgrown Solventless, in February 2015. However, it is possible that the technique had been known for some time prior.
After this posting, the internet began accumulating reports of rosin extractions.
From there, rosin has only continued to grow in popularity. It has become increasingly known as a safer method for obtaining a high-quality cannabis extract. The technique has even been considered to be revolutionary among cannabis enthusiasts.
Today, many people produce their own rosin at home, either with a rosin press or by using a hair straightener.
How is Rosin Made?
Rosin is created by physically separating the active compounds from the cannabis plant material. Heat and pressure melt and isolate the concentrated cannabinoids from the flowers.
Heat and pressure are both necessary for making rosin. Heat temporarily transforms the trichomes from a solid to a liquid state, while pressure forces the liquid concentrate away from the extraction material. The more pressure that is used, the better the yield will be.
Ideally, the amount of heat used for a rosin extraction is very low. This will ensure the preservation of the terpene profile expressed by the extraction material.
Making rosin is not limited to just dried bud. You can make rosin from marijuana flowers, dry sift, or bubble hash.
Individuals have been reported to use their body weight or different hand clamps for applying pressure. Larger scale operations use hydraulic and pneumatic rosin presses that apply much more pressure.
What Are the Benefits of Rosin?
The main benefits of rosin are that it does not contain harmful solvent residues and is safer to produce, compared to other cannabis extracts.
The rosin technique is a safe and simple alternative to solvent-based extractions such as BHO. Butane extractions can be extremely dangerous if proper safety protocols are not followed. A number of explosions have resulted from cannabis extractions using the highly volatile solvent.
Rosin products are also guaranteed to contain no residual solvents, because rosin is never exposed to solvents in the first place. This means that rosin is generally safer for medical cannabis users who require clean and pure products.
Like other cannabis concentrates, rosin has many practical benefits. The effects are very strong, requiring users to consume less material overall.
The taste is considered to be much cleaner and smoother and because it is fast-acting, rosin could be an effective way of delivering medical marijuana.
What Are the Risks of Rosin?
Rosin is considered to be on the safe side, as far as concentrates go. The main risks include the potency, risks associated with dabbing, and the possibility of getting a burn while making homemade rosin.
If you’re making your own rosin, you run the risk of burning yourself using the hair straightener or rosin press. You can also get burned when dabbing. Keep these risks in mind, and use proper precautions and safety strategies when consuming dabs.
Rosin is also extremely potent. Much like other cannabis concentrates, rosin can have very powerful effects and should be consumed responsibly. It is important to remember that THC is a powerful psychoactive substance that can have adverse effects. The side effects of THC include paranoia, anxiety, dizziness, and dry mouth.
Another rare side effect of using high doses of THC is psychosis. The journal Schizophrenia Research published two case studies where dabs were linked to the development of psychosis in 2016.
How to Make Rosin: Hair Straightener Method
The main reason that rosin has become so popular is how simple it is to produce. Unlike BHO, rosin can easily and safely be made at home.
To make rosin, all you need is a hair straightener, parchment paper, a tool to collect the rosin, and of course, some cannabis.
Of course, it is always recommended that you purchase rosin from a reputable supplier — but many have found success using the hair straightener method.
Step 1: Preparation
- Fold a square of parchment paper in half. Make sure the square is big enough to contain all the rosin that separates.
- Place a bud of marijuana in the center of the folded parchment paper.
- Turn the hair straightener on to a temperature around 200°F, or the lowest temperature setting.
Step 2: Pressing
- Take your parchment paper containing the bud of marijuana and put it between the heated plates of the hair straightener. Make sure the plates cover the bud and that it is centered.
- Using heat-resistant gloves, oven mitts, or a hand clamp, apply as much pressure as possible to the hair straightener containing the parchment and bud.
- Continue to apply the pressure for 10-20 seconds.
- Remove the paper from the hair straightener.
- Using a dabbing utensil, remove the flattened bud from the paper as well as any remaining plant material which may have broken off.
- Allow the paper containing the extract to cool down.
Step 3: Collecting
- Once cooled, use a dabbing tool to collect the rosin from the parchment paper.
- If your rosin has a fluid-like consistency that is difficult to collect, you may have used too high of a temperature.
- If there is a hole in your parchment try applying the pressure more gradually.
- If you did not yield much or any rosin, it may be the strain and not your technique. Many users have reported that some strains simply do not work when making rosin.
- A lack of rosin yield has also been attributed to buds which are too dry, suggesting moisture may play some role in the process.
For more pressure and ultimately higher yields, many people have found it beneficial to use hand clamps. These tools increase the amount of pressure that can be applied to the extraction material. This makes extraction easier, and permits the use of lower temperatures.
Some people have used either their hands or their feet to apply pressure. It is recommended to use gloves that can resist heat under these circumstances.
Rosin is a new, inexpensive, and safe method of extracting marijuana using heat and pressure. The rosin technique produces a high-quality concentrate that has strong and immediate effects when dabbed.
The simplicity of the rosin technique has made concentrates more easily accessible to the general public than ever before. With just a hair straightener and parchment paper, anyone can make their own rosin at home.