Most people are only familiar with the standard varieties of cannabis available to them. This means things like cannabis tinctures, edibles, and good old fashioned, regular cannabis buds for smoking.
However, of those major types, there is a myriad of smaller forms available that allow you new and exciting ways to enjoy cannabis.
Two of these, shake and trim, can sometimes cause confusion. They sound more like dance moves than actual cannabis types, yet they are actually extremely popular ways to enjoy your buds.
So, what are the differences between these two types of weed?
What Is Shake?
Let’s start with the more common of the two, shake. Shake is sometimes sold in cannabis dispensaries from numerous strains that may be sold together. Despite its confusing name, shake is super simple. Shake is just the leftover trichomes that fall off your cannabis buds when you store them.
If you have ever bought some cannabis from a dispensary, or even a friend on the street, it likely came in a small baggy. These little bags are a great way to store and carry your bud, but they also leave room for a lot of jostling and potential damage.
This jostling dislodges the white trichomes that typically coat a high-quality cannabis bud. This trichome detritus settles into the bottom of the bag, sometimes forgotten by ignorant users.
However, for the more aware, these leftover trichomes – or shake – can be enjoyed all on their own. The trichomes that coat your buds are abundant with terpenes and cannabinoids; all the things that make your cannabis buds great.
However, most of the time, shake is sold by dispensaries as a way to make use of the leftover product. After they have sold all of the remaining buds for a particular strain, they round up all the small pieces leftover and sell them separately as shake. It usually comes in pre-rolled joints.
This means that the quality of your shake can differ drastically depending on where you buy it from, and who sells it. It is still usable and great for getting high, but it can sometimes be of inferior quality.
Make sure you aren’t trying shake from multiple strains mixed together, as this can result in a weird, unpleasant high.
What Is Trim?
Trim is precisely what the name suggests – the trimmed leaves from the cannabis plant.
When the cannabis plant grows, it produces a lot more vegetation than what we smoke. It grows leaves, stems, and other plant parts we wouldn’t want to smoke. To prepare the bud for smoking, and indeed to encourage better yield, growers must trim the leaves.
These leaves are not the same thing as cannabis buds, as they do not have the same level of cannabinoids within them. The main thing that they do tend to have a lot of is trichomes and terpenes.
These compounds can certainly get you high, but it won’t be great. Trim will burn your throat and leave you with an unpleasant taste in your mouth that you won’t be able to get rid of very quickly.
However, trim is super cheap, as every single cannabis plant makes leaves that get trimmed. The main reason that growers hold onto their trim is for the purpose of making hash.
In fact, hash has been made from trim for millennia. You simply need to decarboxylate your trim, then scrape off the kief crystals that cling to the leaves, then press it together to make hash!
Furthermore, you can use it to make some great cannabutter, heating it to move the terpenes and cannabinoids over to your fat source.
You can actually eat trim raw, as it is indeed a regular leafy green, and is thus wholly edible. It might not taste like a healthy salad green, though, so make sure you are prepared for its slightly bitter taste.
Which Should You Use: Shake or Trim?
Despite their fundamental differences, people have been arguing about whether shake or trim is the superior form of cannabis for centuries.
Proponents of shake argue that it offers up the best flavor and similarities to its parent buds. Lovers of trim, meanwhile, say that it is the best way to get high, as the kief crystals hold a larger quantity of cannabinoids once they are processed.
Ultimately, the decision is entirely up to you. The main thing you should keep in mind is that shake and trim are not the same thing, despite what some stores will try and tell you.
They are fundamentally different products, with varying effects and flavors. Shake is all about the taste and aroma profile of its parent strain, whereas trim is all about getting as high as possible as cheaply as you can. Plus, no one should be selling you trim without telling you explicitly that it is not shake – it can burn your throat pretty bad!
So, the next time you spot some shake or trim at your local dispensary, make sure you know what you are getting.