What are Terpenes? Definition, Benefits of Full-Spectrum CBD, and More


If you’ve ever smelled the citrusy scent of an orange peel or the fresh scent of pine in a Christmas candle, then you’ve encountered terpenes. 

These fragrant oils can be found throughout nature in plants and animals. From lavender to hops — and yes, that’s right, even cannabis — terpenes are everywhere, and research has revealed that they have some powerful therapeutic benefits.

Terpenes are used in various ways, such as in household products, personal care products, and essential oils.

Cannabis Terpenes: The Basics

So, what are terpenes? Therapeutic and Medicinal Uses of Terpenes defines terpenes, or isoprenoids, as “the largest and most diverse group of naturally occurring compounds that are mostly found in plants but larger classes of terpenes such as sterols and squalene can be found in animals. They are responsible for the fragrance, taste, and pigment of plants.”

What are the most common terpenes found in cannabis?

  • Myrcene
  • Limonene 
  • Pinene
  • Linalool 
  • Caryophyllene 

What are the benefits of terpenes?

Whether a product is labeled Sativa or Indica does not significantly impact the consumer experience. You’ll be hard-pressed to find a pure Indica or Sativa strain—most strains are hybrids in the modern-day. Terpene and cannabinoid profiles and a list of other factors, including dosage, metabolism, tolerance, etc. have a much more significant impact on how the cannabis products impact the consumer experience. 

The available research on terpenes reveals that they have some powerful therapeutic properties. Let’s explore the medicinal benefits that have been studied in the five most common terpenes found in cannabis. 


The most common dominant terpene in cannabis strains is Myrcene: also found in hops, mango, and lemongrass. Frontiers in Nutrition states that “β-Myrcene reported biological activities include analgesic, sedative, antidiabetic, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, and anticancer effects.” 


Limonene is also commonly found in citrus fruits. The therapeutic effects of limonene have been extensively studied. A 2018 review of the current research on limonene’s medicinal benefits lists “anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, antinociceptive, anticancer, antidiabetic, antihyperalgesic, antiviral, and gastroprotective effects, among other beneficial effects in health.” Wedding Cake and Dosidos are two strains high in limonene. 


Pinene is found in rosemary, pine, and eucalyptus trees. It has been found to possess antimicrobial, apoptotic, antimetastatic, and antibiotic properties.


A Review of a Biologically Active Compound of Commercial Importance states that linalool exhibits various biological activities such as antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, anticancer, and antioxidant properties. Linalool is also found in rose, basil, and lavender. Kosher Kush, Lavender, and Granddaddy Purple are strains high in linalool. 


Caryophyllene is found in black pepper, cloves, and cinnamon. A 2016 article details the benefits of caryophyllene that have been studied, stating, “β-Caryophyllene has now been shown to be directly beneficial for colitis, osteoarthritis, diabetes, anxiety and depression, liver fibrosis and Alzheimer-like disease types.”

Benefits of Full-Spectrum CBD: Terpenes and Cannabinoids 

Cannabidiol (CBD) is a powerful antioxidant and is well known for its anti-inflammatory properties. However, not all CBD is created equal. Full-spectrum CBD does not isolate CBD from all the other naturally occurring cannabinoids and compounds such as terpenes present in the cannabis Sativa plant. 

Full-spectrum CBD products contain all the terpenes and cannabinoids of the plant. This can produce what is known as “the entourage effect,” when cannabinoids and other biological compounds act synergistically to create unique effects and heightened medical benefits. 

If you’re new to CBD, we’ve got you covered. Check out this guide for beginners to get started. Full-spectrum CBD products come in various forms, such as full-spectrum CBD gummies, tinctures, or even gel capsules.

At Crystal Creek Organics, we are obsessed with providing quality, lab-tested products to our consumers. Whether you’re considering purchasing CBD products to enhance your life or manage conditions, or just need a reliable resource like our blog to learn about the difference between cannabinoids and consumption methods out there, the first step in your journey to knowledge and wellness begins by seeing our product offerings here.

The statements made regarding these products have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. All information presented here is not meant as a substitute for or alternative to information from health care practitioners. Please consult your health care professional about potential interactions or other possible complications before using any product.