The world of cannabis is like the endless sea, where the deeper you go, the more magnificent and unique things you will encounter. Cannabis culture started with some buds and plants, which were used for recreational purposes. It then found its way into medicine and then arrayed into different directions from psychological needs to a simple relaxing evening. From a bud came kief, oils, concentrates, dabs, and wax, and the list just seems to get longer. 

In this article, we are discussing one such unique by-product of cannabis; Live Resin. 

The king of concentrates, Live Resin is an uncommon type of cannabis concentrate that is made using fresh cannabis that has not been dried or cured. This brings about a whole spectrum of flavour, including a tempting aroma and an eventful taste. 

Let's look at this in detail. 

What is Live Resin?

What is Live Resin

Live Resin is an esteemed name among the cannabis community. After all, it is one of the top concentrates with an undamaged reputation. So what exactly is this concentrate? 

The process and the end product that is extracted from the fresh cannabis plant that has not been cured or dried is known as Live Resin. The process is carried out to preserve the terpenes, which in other methods are lost during the process. Instead of curing and drying, Live Resin uses the process of instant freezing and extracting the material, which leads to a potent concentrate with high amounts of terpenes.

Created by Kind Bill in 2013, Live Resin quickly rose to fame, owing to its flavour-packed punch and an enchanting aroma. Its entire out-of-the-box quality is owed to its extraction and making method, also known as flash freezing. 

To produce Live Resin, fresh cannabis flower buds and sugar leaves are used, leaving the large fan leaves and stems alone. As the buds are not dried and cured, which leads to a loss of terpenes, the flash-freezing method succeeds in retaining the desirable compounds and gives the user experience of a lifetime. And that's why you see concentrate lovers drooling over Live Resin. 

The terpenes that are retained during the flash-freezing methods are responsible for the aroma and flavour of each cannabis strain. These essential oils or terpenes, then work to give the concentrate a distinctive taste, smell, and other characteristics, such that one has never seen before. 

Why does Live Resin Skip the drying and curing process?

Process of making Live Resin

If you ever eat fresh cannabis, you will not get high and feel any of the effects that you usually do. This is because the compounds responsible for the high and medicinal benefits are not activated yet. They are present in their acidic form, which does not fit into the endocannabinoid system, and thereby refuses to produce any high. For this reason, the drying and curing process is used. Once you decarboxylate or expose the cannabis plant to heat, the acidic form gets converted into the very known THC and CBD, which is then free to react with our body. You will feel the psychoactive and therapeutic effects as the process removes moisture accumulated during the cultivation process. 

But there is a drawback in this method. As you dry and cure cannabis, it is bound to lose some terpenes during the process. Terpenes are responsible for the taste and aroma of the cannabis bud, from skunky, earthy, to sweet and citrusy. When the cannabis is left to dry, the most volatile terpenes are evaporated, which then changes the flavour of the bud. A study showed that the cannabis plant, which has been dried for a week at room temperature experienced a 31% loss in terpenes.

Terpenes are also used to heighten the effects of THC and CBD. This is known as an entourage effect, which was published in a study by the British Journal of Pharmacology. The entourage effect leads to greater intensity of high and amplifies the impact and cannabis experience. 

Kind Bill, when harvesting his plants, wanted to work out a method to preserve the terpenes to increase the potency and flavour of the entire plant. The result is Live Resin, which provides an out of the world dabbing experience.

| Also Read: What Are Cannabis Terpenes & How do they Affect Your Body? 

How is Live Resin made?

Before we start with this process, just know that it is carried out in an extremely professional environment, and please do not try this at home. Not let's do this!

The first step is to harvest and flash-freeze the cannabis plant material- the bud and the sugar leaves. This is done by slowly dipping it into a cold insulating cylinder filled with liquid nitrogen, or placing it in a cooler with dry ice/frozen carbon dioxide on the bottom. In case of the cooler method, the ideal temperature is decided to be -40 degrees Fahrenheit (also -40 degrees Celsius).

For the solvent, the live resin process usually uses liquefied petroleum gas, like butane or propane. In some cases, ethanol or carbon dioxide (CO2) are also used, but they are not so common. 

The Live Resin making process usually has the following five steps:

  1. Filling the material column with the frozen plant material
  2. Cooling the solvent
  3. Passing the solvent over the material to create the solution
  4. Use a very minimal amount of heat to the solution, which helps to enhance the vaporisation of the solvent. 
  5. The end step is to chill the solvent tank to recondense the vapours. 

Live Resin process has a critical difference, compared to other types of extractions, which is the temperature of the vacuum purge. This is carried out to retain the essentials oils as much as possible and to prevent the evaporation. 

How to consume it?

  • Dabbing

Live Resin is a concentrate which means the most popular method to consume it is to dab it. For the experienced cannabis user, dabbing is a pretty simple method where you place the dab/concentrate on a heated bowl and inhale the vapour. If you're not familiar with dabbing, let me explain it to you. 

To dab the concentrates, you use special equipment known as a dab rig, which is a water pipe which has a flat bowl called a nail. The nail is constructed from a material that can withstand high temperature without succumbing. This is different from using glass bowls which are used in bong to smoke flowers. 

Dab spoon is used to pick up the concentrate and place it on the heated nail. For Live Resin, it is advised to a spoon-shaped tip instead of a flat-tipped dabber. Now heat the nail with a torch lighter, typically butane lighters. It is important to note that a very hot nail will burn the live resin and its flavour and essence. On the other hand, a cold nail will not vaporise it perfectly. The optimal temperature is usually between 315 and 400 degrees Fahrenheit (about 157 to 204 degrees Celsius)

Once the heated nail is ready, scoop the live resin using the dab tool, and place it on the heated nail. It will vaporise, and this is your cue to inhale it from the other end, also known as a mouthpiece. 

| Also Read: Smoking Dabs- What is Dabbing & How to Do it? |

  • Vaping

Vaping is very much possible with live resin. You can either use a vape pen or a nectar collector. Vapes use the same method as heating the coil and vaporising the concentrate as the dab rig. Though people like dabbing concentrate more than they like to vape it, it is still a viable option for all the vape lovers.

In addition to a regular vape, you can choose the hassle-free way and use a live resin cartridge, attach to a battery, and smoke it: no need to load and all that. 

Using a vape pen with a live resin cartridge is by far the simplest method. Simply buy a live resin cart, attach it to your battery, and you’re ready to go.

  • Sprinkling the Live Resin

Joint wrapped in Concentrate

If you're used to smoking dried flowers, you can experience a heightened high with the terpene-rich Live Resin. Just sprinkle it on your packed bowl of the flower when using a bong. Just make sure you're not lighting it and burning it the first go. On the other hand, you can also wrap it around your joint or blunt. You can even have many more creative ideas to consume it.

| Also Read: A Beginner's Guide to Cannabis Concentrates and their Consumption |

How to store it?


Storing is an essential part of Live Resin as you would want to preserve the aromatic flavour and taste of the concentrate for as long as you can. For starters, you should keep it away from heat, light, moisture, and open air. 

To protect it from degradation and maintain its consistency and texture, it is advised to store it in an airtight container. You should opt for glass or silicone concentrate storage jars as they are the best way to preserve the cannabinoids and terpenes. Silicone is more commonly preferred as it is easy to scrape the sticky concentrate from it. 

Light and temperature play an essential role in breaking down the resin. For this reason, you should know the accurate way to store it. Place the concentrate container in a cool environment, either a refrigerator or a cold room away from sunlight. Make sure your container is airtight as the open-air can make it lose its potency, and can even change the colour, texture, and taste. 


  • What’s the Difference Between Live Resin and Sauce?

Live Resin uses cannabis nugs that haven't been cured or dried to make a potent and aromatic concentrate. However, Sauce can be made with fresh cannabis or cured bud. If the fresh plant is used to make Sauce, it is called "Live Resin Sauce", otherwise, it is labelled as "Cured Nug Sauce". 

  • Is Live Resin Considered a ‘Full Spectrum Extract?’

Full- Spectrum extract is referred to those concentrates that trap the most cannabinoid and terpenes from the raw cannabis plant. In this way, Live Resin can be considered a full-spectrum extract. However, Kief, which is made from cured cannabis, is also a full-spectrum extract. 

  • What Are Live Resin Carts?

Live Resin Carts are used to consume this extraordinary concentrate in the most simple way. These are pre-filled cartridges which are filled with Live Resin, instead of any other concentrate or oil. To use it, you have to attach it to a battery, allow it to heat, and then inhale through the mouthpiece. 

This brings us to the end of this extensive Live Resin Blog. I hope you found this informative. For any other question, feel free to drop a comment below.

Till then, keep toking with Olivastu!