CBN, as a cannabinoid, has been around for decades. Still, it’s just now getting its moment in the spotlight—or should we say it’s getting infused into a whole basket full of sleep-aid products. CBN oil can help you quiet your racing thoughts and ease into bed when used properly. 

In this post, we’re going to cover:

  • What CBN oil is 
  • What CBN’s potential benefits are 
  • How to take it to help with sleep 
  • And address some of the internet’s most common questions

What Is CBN Oil? 

CBN oil is an oil, usually MCT, that’s been infused with the cannabinoid CBN, shorthand for cannabinol. CBN oil can also contain other ingredients which we’ll get into later in this post. 

The Spectrum

CBN oil can come in three distinct varieties: full-spectrum, broad-spectrum, or isolate-based. 

Without getting too in the weeds, here’s the breakdown: 

  • Full-spectrum: Contains all cannabinoids present in the cannabis/hemp plant at harvest
  • Broad-spectrum: This is full-spectrum CBN oil with THC cannabinoids removed. 
  • Isolate-based: Made with a carrier oil and isolated CBN. No other cannabinoids should be present. 

You can figure out what kind of CBN oil you are considering by looking at its third-party certificates of analysis. These lab documents will show you which cannabinoids are in your product and at what concentrations. 

Suppose you want to learn more about the differences in the hemp-product spectrum. In that case, we do have some blog posts about full-spectrum, broad-spectrum, and isolated CBD

What Does CBN Oil Do? 

CBN is still a relatively understudied cannabinoid, but there have been a few non-FDA studies that suggest it may be able to help with: 

How Do You Take CBN Oil To Sleep 

Of the potential benefits listed above, promoting sleep is CBN’s biggest selling point. While calling CBN a guaranteed sleep aid would be misleading, there are ways that you can work CBN oil into your sleep routine. 

As with most supplements, you must give CBN oil time to take effect. Unlike CBN gummies, which require up to two hours to take full effect, CBN oil may take as little as 15 minutes to kick in. 

Sublingual | Est. Time To Effect: 15 Minutes 

The first and faster way of taking CBN oil requires filling up your dropper, assuming your product comes with a dropper bulb and pipette. Fill the pipette to your desired dosage and put the oil under your tongue. Let the oil sit there for about 20 seconds before you swallow. This method is called sublingual ingestion

Because the membrane is so thin under your tongue, CBN can enter your bloodstream more quickly here than in your digestive system. 

Consuming | Est. Time To Effect: 45 Minutes

The second, more gradual way to take CBN oil is to swallow your desired dosage directly or put it in a beverage. Without letting the oil sit under your tongue, you’ll force the CBN in your oil to enter your bloodstream more slowly. 

The added benefit of slower absorption is that the effects of the cannabinoids should last longer than if you were to use your CBN oil sublingually. 

Will CBN Oil Change How You Sleep?

Adding CBN oil to your sleep schedule isn’t likely to change how you sleep. As a naturally occurring substance, CBN is a gentle cannabinoid. It won’t turn you into someone who can sleep through your alarm. 

CBN will allow your body and mind to relax so that you can fall asleep more easily. 

Will CBN Oil Make You Groggy In The Morning?

Unfortunately, there isn’t a one-size-fits-all answer to this question. Waking up groggy is a function of many different factors, including where in your sleep cycle you wake up. 

Grogginess after taking CBN oil can depend on your dosage, when you took your dose before bed and the presence of other cannabinoids. 

If you do decide to add CBN oil to your sleep routine, start slow and gradually increase your dosage as needed. Experiment with ingestion methods, i.e., sublingual vs. consumption, timing, and different spectrum products. 

Can CBN Oil Make You Hungry? 

There is some evidence that suggests CBN can be an effective appetite stimulant. If your question is more, will taking CBN oil turn you into a midnight fridge raider—probably not. 

CBN and full-spectrum CBD products may affect your appetite, but not in the way that THC products give you the “munchies.” 

Can You Mix Melatonin and CBN Oil?

You can mix melatonin with CBN and cannabinoid products in general. Sunset Lake CBD sells melatonin-infused sleep products and CBN products that are melatonin-free. 

As of this writing, no studies suggest mixing CBN and melatonin is harmful or counterproductive. 

Frequently Asked CBN Oil Questions

So far, we’ve covered what CBN oil is, how to use it, and how it may affect your nightly routines. But there are many more general questions we haven’t touched on. In the rest of this post, we’ll address some of the internet’s most common questions. 

Are There Any Side Effects?

Because federal agencies stifled cannabinoid research for so long, CBN-specific research is in its infancy. We don’t know much about the long-term side effects of CBN use, but we can extrapolate based on what we know about CBD. Side effects of full-spectrum CBD use may include:

  • Changes in appetite
  • Diarrhea
  • Nausea
  • Dizziness 
  • Upset Stomach

Is CBN Habit-Forming?

As of this writing, CBN has no known addictive properties. It is a gentle cannabinoid that may have potential nighttime benefits. Inconsistent use, however, may lead to disrupted sleep patterns. 

Does It Interact With Medications?

CBN, and cannabinoids in general, do interact with certain medications in the Staten class (and others). You should talk to your doctor and pharmacist before adding any cannabinoids to your nighttime routine. 

Will CBN Oil Show Up On A Drug Test?

Your product may trigger a positive drug test. If your CBN oil contains any THC or is labeled as “full-spectrum,” there is a good chance that it will register on a workplace drug screening. 

Isolate-based and broad-spectrum products should be fine. To learn more about cannabinoids and why some products show on drug tests, see our post about CBD and drug tests here

Is CBN Oil Psychoactive Like THC?

Because CBN is the oxidated form of THC, it interacts with your endocannabinoid system in much the same way. Because CBN binds to your CB1 receptors, it is technically a psychoactive cannabinoid. 

That said, you are unlikely to experience the same kind of psychoactive effects that you would a THC product. Think of CBN as causing drowsiness and relaxation rather than euphoria and time dilation. 

Is It Legal?

Depending on where you live, CBN oil may or may not exist in a legal gray area. Federally speaking, as long as CBN is derived from cannabinoids harvested from industrial hemp, it’s legal

The Wrapup 

CBN oil offers a fast-acting and potent option for folks looking for natural sleep supplements. Before you buy anything, be sure to look into the quality of the products via testing documents and look at the company’s reviews.

Cannabinoid products are continuing to evolve and meet the needs of more and more people. One such need that millions face daily (and nightly) is a lack of quality sleep. CBD oil was the first product that many of us turned to, but as our understanding of cannabinoids deepens, CBN is beginning to gain popularity. 

In this post, we will cover CBN oil specifically and talk about what the cannabinoid may be able to do for you. We’ll also cover, 

  • The difference between full-spectrum and isolate CBN oil  
  • Where CBN comes from 
  • And five things you should be on the lookout for if you’re interested in buying CBN oil

What Is CBN Oil? 

CBN Oil is any oil, called a carrier oil, that’s been infused with CBN. CBN is short for canna-bi-nol, emphasis ours. 

Full-spectrum CBN Oil will contain additional cannabinoids like CBD and THC, though it is possible to find sublingual products made with CBN isolate. CBN oil made with isolate should not contain any other cannabinoids. 

Before we jump into what you may want to use CBN oil for and what to look out for before you add that product to your cart, let’s review what CBN is and what it isn’t. 

What Is CBN?

CBN is one of the more than 100 naturally occurring chemicals—cannabinoids— produced by the hemp and cannabis plants. It is different than other popular cannabinoids like CBD and THC because CBN is an oxidized cannabinoid

Unlike CBD, CBN doesn’t come from fresh hemp flowers. Instead, the only way to harvest CBN is via THC oxidation, meaning that we must break down delta-9 THC with oxygen and UV light to reap its benefits. 

Because CBN is the byproduct of THC, we consider it to be mildly psychoactive. That isn’t to say that CBN is a milder version of THC. CBN isn’t going to make you feel euphoric or dilate time. Instead, the effects commonly associated with CBN use include:

  • Relaxation 
  • Sedation 
  • Feeling weighted down
  • Mild fuzzy sensations in your limbs 

Is CBN A Better Sleep Aid Than CBD?

It’s hard to say which cannabinoid is better at any one thing. CBN and CBD are not sleep aids, nor are they all that effective when used in isolation. 

Sunset Lake CBD usually advocates for full-spectrum products, meaning you get all cannabinoids produced by the hemp plant. That’s a roundabout way of saying that CBD and CBN together are more effective than either CBN or CBD alone. 

5 Things To Consider Before Buying CBN Oil

What Are Your Expectations For CBN Oil?

Before shopping for CBN oil, you should ask yourself what benefits you expect to get from its use. If your answer is a non-negotiable, surefire sleep aid, CBN oil may not be for you. Instead, you should talk to your doctor about what FDA-approved sleep aids are on the market. 

If you are looking for supplements that can improve your sleep hygiene and help you relax, CBN oil is what you’re looking for. 

One of the harsh realities about cannabinoids is that while they have a reasonably understood effect profile, they don’t work for everyone as intended. It can be a tough pill to swallow, but better now than after spending money on a product that isn’t right for you. 

Side Effects And Medication Interference 

Before you buy CBN oil, you’ll want to speak with your doctor or pharmacist about any possible interactions they may have with your medications. Serious cannabinoid interferences are rare but not impossible. 

You should also know the side effects before you buy CBN oil online. CBN’s side effects include:

  • Changes in appetite
  • Diarrhea 
  • Nausea
  • Dizziness
  • Upset stomach 

If you do experience any of these side effects, stop using your CBN oil and monitor your condition. It may be a dosage issue, but you may also not tolerate CBN suspended in oil. You may want to check out CBN gummies if that’s the case. 

Additional Ingredients 

It’s not uncommon for CBN oil to contain other ingredients designed to help you get to sleep. More common additives include melatonin, St. John’s Wort, and peppermint. 

Based on what you know about your body, these ingredients may or may not help you. Always check the ingredients on any supplement you plan on buying. 

Full Spectrum vs. Isolate

One thing you’ll want to determine about any cannabinoid-infused product is whether or not it’s full-spectrum or not. We have a more in-depth explanation of this jargon below. 

Related: What Is Full-Spectrum CBD? Cutting Through The Jargon

Essentially, when a product is full-spectrum, it contains additional cannabinoids that may not be mentioned on the label, specifically THC. While this may not be an issue for you, trace amounts of THC can throw a wrench into workplace drug tests and government assistance programs. Always be sure to check your certificate of analysis. That brings us to our final point. 

Look For Test Results 

Because the cannabinoid market is so underregulated, you should always ask to see test results for the CBN oil that you plan to buy online. 

Not only can a certificate of analysis tell you about the potency of your product, but it will also tell you about any other cannabinoids that may be present and when the last time the manufacturer tested the product. 

At first glance, certificates of analysis can be daunting. Luckily, we have a guide that can help you become an expert.

CBN is one of the newest cannabinoids on the block and it isn’t going anywhere. While some consider CBN to be a minor cannabinoid behind THC and CBD, retailers are marketing it as a superior sleep aid. While science has yet to confirm whether or not CBN promotes a more restful night’s sleep, it’s still worth getting to know the cannabinoid. 

In this post, we’re going to cover,

  • What CBN is
  • Where it comes from
  • And address the internet’s most common questions about the new “sleep cannabinoid”

What is CBN? 

CBN is short for Canna-Bi-Nol and is one of the more than 100 cannabinoids produced by the hemp plant. Some researchers consider it to be mildly psychoactive because it is usually found in aged THC-dominant cannabis (something we’ll get into a bit later)

Is CBN Different Than CBD?

CBN and CBD are different cannabinoids with their own distinct molecular structures and benefits. We know that CBN interacts directly with your endocannabinoid system’s CB1 and CB2 receptors. CBD does not. 

You can take CBD and CBN at the same time. Doing so may even yield additional desired effects. Research suggests that consuming both at the same time can be an effective pain management method.

What is CBN Good For? 

We still aren’t sure what CBN can do because while there have been studies, most have not been carried out with human subjects. We can only hypothesize about what CBN might be good for based on animal studies.


One study on rats published in 2016 suggested CBN may reduce inflammation caused by arthritis. Further research is needed in both animals and humans before we fully understand this link1.  

Pain Relief

Another 2019 study found that a combination of both CBD and CBN was able to relieve chronic pain in rats. Further, this study found that a combination of CBN and CBD was more effective than either cannabinoid taken alone2.

Another study conducted in Japan in the 1980s concluded that both CBN and THC have pain-relief properties3


A recent human-centered study published in 2021 by the Australian Sleep Disorders Research Institute found that a combination of THC, CBN, and CBD taken regularly under the tongue significantly improved insomnia symptoms and self-reported sleep quality in people compared to the placebo group4

Read: Can CBN help you get a better night’s sleep?

Appetite Stimulant 

In a rodent study, CBN increased the volume of food that rats ate, suggesting that it may be an effective appetite stimulant and an alternative for those looking to gain their appetite back without the high associated with THC (another well-known appetite stimulant.) 


CBN may also be a powerful neuroprotectant, meaning that it may help protect your nervous system from damage, especially in people who develop a health condition with neurological effects.

In a 2005 study, researchers found that CBN helped delay the onset of ALS in rats5


CBN has also been tested against certain strains of MRSA— a type of staph bacteria that’s become much more resistant to antibiotics in recent years6.

Where Does CBN Come From? 

CBN comes from a process called oxidation. When we expose its predecessor molecule, THC, to oxygen, UV light, or heat for prolonged periods of time, it breaks down into cannabinol. This means that CBN content isn’t determined by genetic factors, but instead by THC content, time, and the environment. 

Frequently Asked Questions About CBN

Is CBN Psychoactive?

Many believe CBN is mildly psychoactive because THC is its predecessor cannabinoid and it interacts with your CB receptors in much the same way THC does. Note that psychoactive doesn’t necessarily mean intoxicating. 

Is CBN Legal?

CBN is not listed as a Schedule I substance. Because CBN is derived from oxidized THC, some believe that CBN could be illegal under the Federal Analogue Act

That said, CBN can also be derived from federally legal hemp plants defined as “cannabis that contains less than 0.3% delta-9 THC,” albeit in smaller quantities. As long as the CBN is derived from hemp, it’s believed to be legal.

Where Can You Find CBN?

As a byproduct of THC, CBN isn’t the most plentiful cannabinoid, and oxidizing THC-dominant cannabis isn’t exactly the most efficient way to harvest CBN. Because of the advances in cannabis science, some companies are starting to release CBN isolate and broad-spectrum CBN + CBD blended products, like CBN edibles and CBN oil. 


CBN edibles are gummies, beverages, or foods that have been infused with cannabinol. Broad- and full-spectrum CBN edibles will contain additional cannabinoids like CBD and THC. 

Some manufacturers may choose to make their CBN edibles with CBN isolate, in which case they should only contain CBN and no other cannabinoids. CBN edibles, like any other cannabinoid-infused edible, should take anywhere between 30-120 minutes to take effect. 


CBN oil is similar to CBD oil. Most of the time, CBN oil will be made by mixing CBN isolate with a carrier oil such as hemp oil or coconut MCT oil. 

You can add your CBN oil to your favorite foods or drinks, or apply the oil directly under your tongue for rapid absorption. CBN oil taken under your tongue should take less time to take effect than CBN edibles— anywhere between 15-60 minutes. 


CBN topicals are lotions, rubs, roll-ons, or salves infused with CBN. You’ll normally see CBN topicals also infused with CBD due to both cannabinoids’ anti-inflammatory properties. CBN topicals should offer localized relief for aches and pains that keep you up at night.

Read more: Where Should You Buy CBN Online?

Does CBN Have Any Side Effects? 

As of this writing, there are no known side effects of CBN, but that doesn’t mean they don’t exist— it just means we need more time to understand the cannabinoid.  

Pregnant people, children, and those sensitive to THC should avoid CBN until we’re more certain of its safety. 

Will CBN Interact with my other Medications?

While we do know that CBD interacts with certain medications, especially those that come with “grapefruit warnings,” we don’t know if CBN acts the same way. 

To be on the safe side, take caution and speak to your pharmacist before trying CBN. 

Does CBN make you hungry?

Unlike CBD which can have appetite-suppressing effects, CBN appears to stimulate appetite (at least in rodents)7. While CBN may not give you the munchies, it may be a great therapeutic option for people struggling with their appetites because of illness or cancer treatments. 


  1. Zurier RB, Burstein SH. Cannabinoids, inflammation, and fibrosis. FASEB J. 2016;30(11):3682–9.
  2. Wong H, Cairns BE. Cannabidiol, cannabinol and their combinations act as peripheral analgesics in a rat model of myofascial pain. Arch Oral Biol. 2019;104:33–9.
  3. Yamamoto, I., Watanabe, K., Kuzuoka, K., Narimatsu, S., & Yoshimura, H. (1987). The pharmacological activity of cannabinol and its major metabolite 11-hydroxycannabinol. Chemical & pharmaceutical bulletin. 35(5), 2144–2147.
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  5. Weydt, Patrick et al. “Cannabinol delays symptom onset in SOD1 (G93A) transgenic mice without affecting survival.” Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis and other motor neuron disorders : official publication of the World Federation of Neurology, Research Group on Motor Neuron Diseases vol. 6,3 (2005): 182-4. doi:10.1080/14660820510030149
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