Team Indica: the tranquil mindsets, relaxed muscles, dreamy highs, sharpened appetites, and restful nights keep us coming back to pacifying varieties like Granddaddy Purple, Northern Lights, and Bubba Kush. Sativa strains, with their racing cerebral energy, can cause more anxiety and paranoia in some individuals, which may be why you exclusively look for that indica purple while browsing Leafly. But not all sativa-dominant strains act as you might think.
Just as there are indicas that behave more like sativa strains, some sativa strains elicit more relaxed effects that can even help you transition into sleep. We chose these five based on user-submitted strain reviews, but mind you, every strain may affect you differently based on the following factors:
- Your personal physiology and brain chemistry
- Your mood and energy level
- How the strain was grown and which genetic traits that particular plant expressed (cannabis nerds, see this primer on genotypes and phenotypes)
- Delivery method and dose
- Expectation of effects
- Accuracy of strain labeling
That being said, the below strains are good starting points for indica-lovers looking for a daytime sativa experience that doesn’t stray too far from those lovably relaxing indica effects.
1. Jack Herer
Jack Herer is one of those brilliantly versatile strains that can bring you energy or relaxation depending on when you use it. Though its sharp, fresh pine aroma and invigorating effects make a great morning pick-me-up, Jack’s uplifting buzz tends to fade into mellow relaxation perfect for chilling out with a movie or book, snuggling up with your partner, or even a good night’s sleep.
One minute you may feel revitalized and wakeful, and then out of the blue, Great White Shark gets you. Perhaps it’s the indica influence of its parent Super Skunk, but Great White Shark can surprise you with its hefty “creeper” effects – meaning it can take some time for you to feel this strain’s strength. It may not knock you into sleep, but if you’re looking for a sativa with that relaxing counterweight, the Shark may just be what you’ve been looking for.
This Dutch-bred sativa is perfect for the consumer looking for a relaxing experience without the high-speed cerebral effects that so often give rise to anxiety and paranoia. With the added benefit of smelling just like the berry it was named after, Strawberry is prized by patients for its ability to treat physical ailments like pain and nausea while also easing stress and other psychological distress.
4. Silver Haze
Parented by the sativa Haze and the indica Northern Lights, Silver Haze was bred to lean toward the Haze side of the family in its effects. However, its indica qualities persist, and that becomes apparent when scrolling through its user reviews. While it certainly provides the focus and creativity you might want during the day, Silver Haze is counterbalanced by a breezy, composed mindset that keeps you relaxed in both mind and body.
Amnesia is a common wake-and-bake sativa – it tends to pique interest and engagement with an almost psychedelic quality – but its high-energy effects come with a ceiling. That is to say that in larger doses, Amnesia can really zonk you out in a manner that is in no way active or functional, much like an indica. Save this one for a day where you want to be physically relaxed, but mentally present. You know, those days where all you want to do is curl up with your video game or kick back with your next artistic endeavor.
“It makes me pretty chilled. I don’t feel like doing much, I just really enjoy the comfort of the couch and tea…You still can do things, just not that energetic and driven. Nice one to lie in bed with and watch South Park.”