All of these types of concentrates and slang terms for them can often be used interchangeably which can easily cause confusion especially for new smokers. Questions like “what is shatter wax?”, “dabs vs wax”, “hash oil vs wax?” and “what is the difference between wax and shatter?” are very common ones and sometimes the answers are not entirely clear.
If you are interested in using shatter to dab yourself but you don’t understand the first thing about it we will try to clarify the situation as best as we can for you here!
Shatter falls under the umbrella of cannabis concentrates. Concentrates like wax, honey, taffy, budder, sap and oil are all cannabis concentrates that are similar to shatter weed, each one is extremely high in THC but extracted in its own unique way.
In a board overview, the process of creating a concentrate consists of the cannabis plant being processed through a solvent either using butane or CO2. The plant material is either blasted or soaked in butane then heated at a high temperature to get rid of the solvent, this results in what is known as butane hash oil (BHO).
Shatter is a name used to describe a highly potent type of butane hash oil. When creating BHO, butane is used to separate the cannabinoids from the trichomes in dried flower making the cannabinoids extremely concentrated. Trichomes are the crystals you see on weed and what kief is made out of, which is commonly found in the crystal catcher at the bottom of your grinder. These crystals contain the highest amount of THC, terpenes and other cannabis concentrates found on the cannabis plant, majority of concentrates are created through harvesting trichomes from the cannabis plant. The process of creation for concentrates is similar in principle, with each form of concentrate having its own variation making it unique. When creating a concentrate the solvents pull the terpenoids, flavonoids and cannabinoids from the cannabis plant material and then are evaporated to create the concentrated form.
Waxes and similar concentrates are processes using a whipping form, then stirred and shaken throughout various stages of the production. This process mixes up different molecules within the extract, creating a creamy and cloudy appearance in texture. Shatter however is a different process, it doesn’t get irritated during the creation process which makes it more of a translucent looking concentrate. The name shatter comes from what happens when you drop it, it shatters. Concentrates like budder are wax like or hash oil is very sticky but shatter is hard and brittle similar to hard candy.