How to Make DIY Cannabis-Infused LubeAshley MantaMarch 24, 2017
Many cannabis companies that produce sexually-focused topicals use CO2-extracted cannabis oil mixed with a carrier oil base like coconut oil. While that works well for companies who produce on a large scale and can afford six-figure extraction equipment, the average consumer cannot replicate it at home. For the hobbyist, and especially those living in prohibition states or states with limited access, we need a method that is both simple and pragmatic!
The idea of DIY cannabis topicals might seem like an undertaking too complicated to attempt. Honestly, I felt the same. I love to cook but I didn’t want my entire apartment to smell like cannabis, and while there are dozens of recipes online, they varied so much I didn’t know what to trust.
To find a method I could feel confident about, I reached out to my good friend Lauren Gibbs, founder and president of Rise Above Social Strategies. Lauren lives in Colorado and has a small home grow where she has gained experience making DIY cannabis tinctures and topicals for her own personal use. Lauren’s two-ingredient cannabis oil recipe has endless uses. She puts in in her sleepytime tea, drizzles it over popcorn, puts it under her tongue as a tincture, and even rubs it on her sore neck.
Because of my (ahem, extensive) experience with coconut oil based lubes, I had another idea for how to use it: Lauren’s simple and clean recipe is perfect for DIY lube, too! Oil-based cannabis lubes won’t get you high (unless consumed); instead, their topical application increases bloodflow and heightens sensation. But be warned: oil based lubes of all kinds are not compatible with latex condoms, so always consider your backup protection methods carefully before you get between the sheets.
DIY Cannabis Lube Recipe
Yields: 8oz infused coconut oil
Potency: Approximately 6mg THC per 1mL of oil
Note: This potency is based on cannabis that is approximately 10–15% THC. Potency can vary significantly based on the potency of the buds you choose.
- 8 ounces fractionated (liquid) coconut oil or MCT oil
- ¼ ounce cannabis flower
- Two Mason jars (each 4 ounces or larger; you can also use a single large jar)
- Food scale
- Grinder or food processor
- Slow cooker
- Unbleached cheesecloth
- Large funnel
- Smaller funnel
- Tincture bottle with a 1-mL calibrated pipette
- Boiling water (enough to cover the Mason jars in the slow cooker)
- Preheat oven to 240˚F.
- Grind cannabis using a food processor (to save time) or a grinder.
- Decarboxylate your cannabis: Spread ground flower evenly on a cookie sheet and bake for one hour on the middle rack, stirring after 30 minutes.
- Divide the decarboxylated cannabis evenly into your Mason jars using the scale. Add half of the cannabis oil to each jar and seal as tightly as possible with the lid.
- Place Mason jars in your slow cooker and cover with boiling water so that the jars are fully submerged. Set slow cooker to “warm” and let cook for 4–5 hours. Using a jar clamp or heavy oven mitts, pull the jars out every 60 minutes and give them a good shake. (Be careful not to burn yourself as the glass and metal will both be hot!)
- After 4–5 hours, remove jars and place them on a cloth to cool (don’t set them on a cold or hard surface as the glass jar could crack).
- Line the large funnel with four layers of cheesecloth and place over a large glass measuring cup with a pour spout. Slowly pour the cooled liquid through the cheesecloth, squeezing out the plant matter to get as much oil as possible. Your strained oil will be slightly green.
- Using a smaller funnel, pour the oil into the tincture bottle. Your lube is ready to use! Start with 1 milliliter at a time, and increase or decrease quantity based on your personal preferences.
- While the Mason jar method is great for containing the cannabis smell, decarboxylating is highly fragrant. If you have nosy neighbors, try frying bacon or cooking something comparably fragrant at the same time to mask the scent.
- If you see bits of herb floating in your oil, strain it again — you don’t want them to cause discomfort during use.
- Keep it simple! Don’t add essential oils or other additives. With this two-ingredient method, your oil is endlessly versatile; you can even bake with it.
- If possible, use lab-tested flower. This will ensure that your product is free of pesticides, molds, and other contaminants. It also makes it slightly easier to calculate potency, though as this article illustrates, it’s challenging to get completely accurate numbers with DIY products.
Have you tried making your own infused lube? How did it go? Tell us about it in the comments!