Whether you’re a seasoned consumer or cannabis newbie, concentrates can be confusing for anyone. What’s a dab, to begin with? We want to break down all that and more in our cannabis concentrates 101 quick guide today.

What’s a Dab?

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Essentially, a dab is an extremely potent concentration of THC. Only a small amount of product, or a dab, is needed to get a powerful high — thus where the name came from.

Introduced in the United States in the late 1960s, it’s become more popular in recent years alongside vaping. Compared to flower, a dab provides a quick, intense high with as little product as possible.

Different Types of Cannabis Concentrates 101

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Now that we know what a dab is, let’s take a look at what kind of dabs there are. A dab is simply any THC concentrate. Often, a dab is vaped through a dab rig with a torch. Regardless, there are different types of cannabis concentrates out there, so let’s take a look at the most popular.


Possibly one of the most popular types of cannabis concentrates, wax looks a lot like brown sugar. It’s an easily stored form of cannabis concentrate. The difference between wax and many other concentrates is its amount of decarboxylated THC. This offers an even more intense high than many alternatives.


A honey-like oil is another type of cannabis concentrate. Likewise, it’s also one of the most popular. Made from carbon dioxide instead of butane, it may taste different than a lot of other concentrates.


Shatter comes in amber-colored, thin sheets that are semi-transparent. A classic way to dab, it shatters when it’s cold — thus the name. Keep shatter in a room temperature environment until you’re ready to dab. Then, try putting it in the freezer for a few minutes beforehand.


Think of crumble as a dried version of shatter. The driest of all concentrates, it’s easy to portion off a dab with this type. As the name implies, it often comes in a crumbled form.

Budder or Butter

Shatter gets an upgrade when it becomes budder. By whipping shatter into a thicker, creamier substance, you get a cannabis concentrate that’s creamy like peanut butter. It’s more shelf-stable than standard shatter.


Compressed resin or hard-pressed kief, hash is a stick but crumbly substance. It’s easy to use, and can often be smoked on top of a bowl or in a joint/blunt instead of dabbed.

Live Resin

A type of cannabis concentrate that’s hard to find, live resin is made using a unique method. Fresh buds are concentrated down into an oil. This oil preserves many more terpenes and other cannabis compounds compared to other concentrate methods.

Live Rosin

Similar to resin, but made free of solvents, rosin is extracted through heat and pressure. It’s a strong, tasty type of cannabis concentrate.

The Bottom Line

Cannabis concentrates are powerful, potent, and only getting more popular. We hope our crash course on cannabis concentrates 101 and what a dab is helped refresh your memory. Still have a question on your mind? The cannabis experts at Nug Avenue want to keep you fully informed. Don’t hesitate to reach out if there’s still more you want to know.