shatter vs wax potency

Cannabis Concentrates: Shatter vs Wax

Shatter and wax are two different consistencies that originate from the same solvent-based extract: BHO. Similar to what happens to rosin , applying a different combination of elements (like temperature and pressure) will result in different textures and consistencies.

1. Butane Hash Oil (BHO)

Before talking about Shatter or Wax, we must first understand what is BHO, because this extract is their primal form.

Butane Hash Oil (aka BHO) is a solvent-based extract, it is made by using butane to pull off the trichomes and all the compounds in it from the plant material.

This is achieved with big industrial machines in a closed-loop, meaning there are fewer chances of exploding (because butane is flammable). Even though it is possible to make BHO at home, we do not recommend it.

Butane is highly flammable and there have been lots of accidents in the last couple of years, where whole houses caught on fire and people got hurt. Also if you don’t have the appropriate equipment, the final product will have lots of butane in it, which is toxic and will give you headaches when consuming it.

If you want to make something to consume in a dab rig, we recommend making rosin , which is made solely by applying heat and pressure, without the use of solvents, resulting in a safer and higher quality product.

2. Shatter

When talking about shatter, we’re not talking about a different extract. Shatter is one of the consistencies BHO can have (sometimes also called BHO shatter).

The different consistencies of BHO are achieved after the trichomes have been pulled from the plant material.

Shatter is achieved with a higher temperature when processing the plant for BHO and left to cool down right after the extraction process, without applying heat or pressure. This makes the butane evaporate and gives it that glass-like consistency, which is extremely brittle and shatters easily.

3. Wax

Just like shatter, wax is a different consistency of BHO, but unlike shatter, it is achieved with a lower temperature when processing the plant material for BHO. Also known as BHO wax, this extract has the consistency of dried wax.

To reach this consistency, BHO is agitated with a slight heat to introduce oxygen molecules and evaporate any butane left, this also gives it a more opaque color.

Because of the lower temperature, wax also has more flavor and smell than shatter because the lower temperature avoids the evaporation of compounds.

4. Shatter vs Wax

Because both Shatter and Wax come from BHO, their potency is fairly similar, being around 60-70% THC. Although some terpenes and cannabinoids may evaporate depending on your goal.

The major difference in consistency comes when consuming it because shatter is brittle, you can easily break it down and smoke it in a joint or a dab rig.

Wax, on the other hand, can be wet and may be harder to smoke in a joint but can be easily smoked in a dab rig and provides the user a more complete effect because of the terpenes in it.

There’s no better or worse, it just depends on what effect you’re looking for.

5. Pros and Cons



• You don’t necessarily need a dab rig, can be smoked in a joint.

• Can be handled with your hands.

• Tends to last longer.


• Consistency can be harder to achieve.



• Easier to achieve consistency because you don’t need to be super careful.


• Hard to smoke in a joint, you’ll need dab rig or vaporizer.

• Harder to handle without the appropriate tools.

• Tends to degrade faster.

6. In Conclusion

If you’re looking for a more complete effect, we recommend wax, but if what you want is a really strong high, you’ll prefer shatter. Even though BHO and derived consistencies are widely known by cannabis users, they’re not the best nowadays.

Because the cannabis market has developed so much in the last couple of years, you can find better quality solventless extracts, which not only are strong but will have more cannabinoids and terpenes, providing a better experience when consuming.

Shatter and wax are two different consistencies that originate from the same solvent-based extract: BHO. Similar to what happens to rosin, applying a different

What’s the Difference Between Shatter, Wax, Resin, & Rosin?

Whether you are just getting into smoking or you’ve been in the cannabis community for a while, changes are you’ve heard the terms: Shatter, Wax, Resin, and Rosin. But what exactly do they mean? You’re probably thinking the word “wax” and “resin” are fairly common, but how do they apply to cannabis? And “shatter”… isn’t that a verb? We’re guessing you’re drawing a blank on “rosin” too.

Well, go ahead and clear your mind of these confusing thoughts. We’ve put together a simple guide to help your understand the difference between shatter, wax, resin, and rosin once and for all!

They’re All a Type of Concentrate

Before you understand the difference between difference between shatter, wax, resin, and rosin, it’s important to understand what exactly they all are. In short, they all refer to a concentrated form of cannabis – or simply “concentrates”. As the name implies, concentrates are a more focused product made up of only the desirable compounds from the cannabis plant (cannabinoids and terpenes). You can almost think of concentrates are the hard alcohol of the cannabis world. Essentially, they’re all a more potent form of cannabis.


Shatter is a marijuana extract that gets is name from its delicate glass-like consistency that can “shatter” if dropped. Since shatter is an extremely pure cannabis extract, it features a very high THC level (often 90%+). It’s easily recognizable thanks to it’s rich orangish-honey color.

Wax is similar to shatter with its high THC levels and potent psychoactive effects, but features a more crumbly and gooey consistency much like earwax. This different consistency comes from slight differences in the way wax is produced. Aside from the different appearance and consistency, wax tends to degrade faster than shatter, but is considered easier to use.


Resin is the general term used to describe the sticky crystal-like residue (called Trichomes) found on the marijuana plant flowers. Trichomes contain all of the cannabinoids and terpenes which make you feel high. If you use grinder with your flower, you will find these trichomes collecting in the base of it. Resin shares a somewhat similar appearance to wax but is naturally occurring. Resin mostly gets categorized with wax and shatter due to its high potency.


Rosin is produced by drying and curing marijuana flowers, then with a combination of heat and pressure, removing the THC-rich resin concentrate. Rosin has grown in popularity thanks to its safe and easy form of production.

The Differences: Shatter, Wax, Resin, & Rosin

In summary, shatter, wax, resin, and rosin are all different marijuana concentrates which can help you get a stronger high. Resin is naturally occurring and can smoked a variety of different ways, but is the least potent of the bunch. Shatter is typically the most potent, but requires a high skill level to produce. Wax features the same high THC levels as shatter, but has a difference consistency and appearance. Rosin is a manually produced extract like shatter and wax, but the process is less sophisticated resulting in a slightly less potent concentrate.

Visit Zips Cannabis for Your Concentrate Needs

If you want to learn more about cannabis concentrates like shatter, wax, resin, and rosin, feel free to stop by any Zips Cannabis location. We stock an extensive supply of popular concentrates from only the best producers. Our budtenders are happy to answer any questions you may have about concentrates and help pick out the best one for you!

Join us as we dive into what is the Difference Between Shatter, Wax, Resin, & Rosin – Zips Cannabis