Survey any toker and chances are they’ll know all about budders, dabs and shatter. But, what about rosin? This up-and-coming form of cannabis is being stocked on dispensary shelves everywhere, but yet, it’s still fairly unfamiliar to the cannabis community.
Don’t worry: if you don’t know much about this novel solventless concentrate, we have you covered. As one of the newest forms of the market, we’ve decided to take a deep dive into the ins-and-outs of the rosin concentrate. With us, you’ll learn just why it’s so special, and even how to craft your own.
Not to be confused with resin or live resin, rosin is a member of the cannabis extracts family. Though different from its concentrate counterparts, rosin is extremely potent in its own right. What truly separates rosin from the other cannabis extracts lies in its unique production process.
Unlike other weed concentrates such as shatter, budder, or wax, rosin does not require the use of solvents to be created. To make conventional concentrates like shatter, dried cannabis flower has to be submerged in or blasted with a solvent of the manufacturer’s choosing. These solvents, typically butane or carbon dioxide, destroy the plant matter while simultaneously isolating all of the beneficial phytochemicals that we know and love. The remaining extract then undergoes a strict purging process to ensure that no solvents linger, and what you’re left with is a beautiful, golden-colored shatter.
Sounds a bit complicated, right? Luckily, Rosin doesn’t need any solvents to be made–just heat and pressure. To make this solventless concentrate, dried bud is pressed between two heated plates under high pressure. This causes the plant’s valuable contents–like terpenes and cannabinoids–to squish out, or become extracted. Because of this, it may not be uncommon for you to hear rosin being referred to as “squish.”
Many cannabis enthusiasts are drawn to rosin simply because of its lack of solvents. It’s frequently believed that solvents make concentrates or extracts less pure, as they contain legitimate chemicals that do have the potential to cause harm. So, with rosin being one of the purest (and safest) forms of concentrates on the market, it’s becoming more and more sought-after.
If your interest has been piqued by this all-natural concentrate, you’re in luck. Though many professional rosin manufacturers utilize a rosin press for larger yields and ease, those of us at home can do it ourselves–typically with supplies we already have.
Here’s how you can make your own rosin to enjoy.
How to Make Rosin – Supplies
Unless you plan on stickying up your favorite hair straightener and mitts, we recommend purchasing equipment dedicated to rosin production only so you don’t ruin your appliances.
Learning how to make rosin involves no solvents or previous chemistry knowledge. All you need are a few household appliances, a little bit of patience, and of course, some weed. To make the process as easy as possible, we recommend:
● Hair straightener with wide ceramic plates and digital temperature display
● Parchment/waxed paper
● Heat-resistant gloves or oven mitts
● Collection tool (wooden spoon, metal pick, or dab tool)
● A few grams of cannabis flower
Tips for Making Squish
Before we actually get started with our homemade rosin, let us give you a few tips that will make the process a whole lot easier.
First, we recommend using a straightener with ceramic plates that are at least two inches wide to make the pressing process more effective. When you have too thin of a straightener, you risk squeezing your rosin all over the sides of your hair styler, so the wider the plates the better. A digital temperature display is also crucial, as the heat levels utilized need to be easily controlled.
When making rosin, no matter how much you may love it, it’s best to keep batches to about seven grams or less. Crafting smaller batches allows us to easier control the quality and consistency of our product, and we don’t run the risk of biting off more than we can chew.
Your workspace should be heat-resistant and completely free of clutter (and other people). Prepare to make rosin by cutting large pieces of your parchment paper into squares a bit larger than the width of the hair straightener. You’ll want a little bit of excess in case the rosin begins to run.
Now that we’re fully prepared, let’s get to pressing.
How to make Rosin
- Put on your gloves or mitts, and start by heating up your hair straightner to its lowest setting; this is typically around 180-200℉.
- Take your parchment paper and place a small (or a few small) nugs in the middle. Then, fold the paper once over so the bud is encased inside, surrounded by the parchment paper.
- Grab your hair straightener and position it over the table just like a stapler; this provides the best angle for pressing rosin.
- Take your folded, stuffed parchment paper and place it in between the hot plates. Placing it closer to the top is typically suggested.
- Squeeze the straightener to apply pressure. Be firm but gentle: it doesn’t require aggressive pressure to get the job done.
- Press down until you feel resistance. Wait about 5-10 seconds until you feel some ‘give’, or you hear the sizzle of your cooked cannabis. At this point, you may see rosin running down your paper.
- Then, remove the parchment paper from the hair straightener carefully, using gloves. If you didn’t get the yield you were looking for, try pressing it again. You can press your rosin two or three times if necessary.
- Once you’re satisfied with your rosin yield, remove your flower and parchment paper and use your desired collection tool to scrape the rosin off the paper. Let it cool a bit, and then, it’s ready for consumption.
Just like that, you’re able to create your own pure, safe form of cannabis concentrate without worrying at all about dangerous chemicals or risky production procedures. It’s important to keep in mind, though, that no matter how easy it is to make, it’s still an extremely potent form of cannabis that should be taken extremely seriously. Always start low and slow.
Is Rosin Better Than Shatter?
No concentrate is inherently “better” than another; they’re simply all different. When it comes down to finding the best concentrate for you, it’s all about personal preference. The solventless process of rosin does a great job at preserving the flavorful terpenes and powerful cannabinoids that cannabis brings, but shatter is also full of its own unique properties and profiles, making it almost impossible to compare the two.
If you’re worried about solvents or just prefer a less chemically-involved product, then try sticking with rosin. Though shatter undergoes strict purification processes to achieve its structure, there is always the chance of residual solvents. For those most concerned with purity and simplicity, rosin is the way to go.
What Is The Difference Between Rosin and Live Resin?
Though their names may sound similar, don’t get rosin confused with resin or live resin, as all are completely different. Live resin is a kind of cannabis concentrate that’s made much like shatter, only the cannabis used has not been dried and cured. Instead, it has been flash-frozen and stored at freezing temperatures to preserve phytochemicals. Live rosin, like regular rosin, is also made this way.
Resin, on the other hand, refers to the black, sticky substance that you can often find caked inside your bowl or downstem. Resin is produced from the plant’s resin glands, otherwise known as trichomes. You may recognize these glands from the sparkly crystals they produce; this extract is called kief, and is essentially just dried resin.
You could smoke regular resin if you’re dankrupt, but you run the risk of an extremely unpleasant flavor and allowing harmful carcinogens and chemicals to enter into your lungs. Though we don’t recommend smoking resin, adding a sprinkle of kief to your bowels may take your high to the next level. (Not to mention, it’s full of great flavors, too.)
Final Thoughts on Rosin
If you have the time, resources and environment to safely and reliably craft your own rosin, why not try it? As one of the purest forms of cannabis concentrates you can find, learning to make your own can prove quite beneficial for your cannabis experience.
Solventless and easy-to-make, rosin is a safe alternative to more chemically-involved cannabis concentrates and it won’t break the bank for you to learn how to make rosin in the comfort of your home. Next time you find yourself having a little bit of extra weed laying around, break out that hair straightener and see for yourself what the hype is all about.