There are many different kinds of concentrates available, but for a lot of people you only end up with limited choices. If you have to decide between Shatter vs Wax, what’s better can depend on a few things. You always want to consider the quality of the material used for extraction. As well as the method used for extraction, not all extractions are the same. Just because someone calls it a dab, doesn’t mean it’s good to go. It is only recommended to buy concentrates from a reputable extractor. There are always bad extractors out there, some of them even work for Medical Marijuana facilities. So always check for quality, concentrates are easier to eyeball than weed for most people. Usually you want to avoid anything that is really dark or black. Lighter color can be a good indication of quality, but it is not the only way to measure.
Shatter vs Wax
For a lot of people, shatter is the way to go. It is typically the most pure with the highest concentration of THC. A good shatter is light in color to where it is transparent in a thin slab or piece. The word shatter is a descriptive term for something that shatters like glass when you break it. Now if your shatter is a but gooey or malleable, it is technically not shatter. Most places sell a lot of things as shatter, and there really isn’t too much difference. Sometimes a warmer than usual room can turn your “glass” into “pull and snap” but you can always put it in the fridge or freezer in a dab container. However to be accurate shatter is the hard stuff that shatters.
In a lot of cases, Shatter has a higher THC concentration than Wax. Shatter can be harder to manage, sometimes it snaps and flies away. You can waste shatter by losing it through poor management. One trick is to touch your dab tool to a hot nail for a second to make it warm enough to cut through the shatter without shattering it.
Shatter comes in different colors which can depend on the materials and extraction methods. You want to look for lighter yellow but sometimes you will come across a darker amber color. I would always recommend looking at test results if they are available, but if not grab the lighter colored one. If your only option is a darker amber option, it still may be good. I only buy a lot of a product I know is good, so I always recommend getting a small amount before buying in bulk.
Wax is sometimes a catch all term for marijuana concentrates but it typically refers to Budders or Crumbles. While I have seen plenty of different forms of concentrate simply labeled “Wax,” most people would use the term for crumble or budder. Wax is usually made with a similar process to shatter but without as much emphasis on slow purging and having a clear product. Often times the concentrate is whipped while purging the butane to speed up the process. There are other ways to achieve this consistency, but this is a popular way. Whipping the concentrate will sometimes distort the color or make it change while purging. You still want to look for lighter colors when shopping for wax, and anything very dark should be avoided. If you’re shopping in a Medical dispensary and they are trying to sell concentrate that looks like black tar, then they don’t care about quality medicine.
Wax can have more flavor and is a lot easier to manage. It is easier to dab wax as well as load it into a dab pen. Sometimes wax is cheaper so if you find the right deal you can save money on a similar product.
Always use your best judgement when buying concentrate. Hearing your dealer or budtender say “This is fire” should not assure you, they’ve said that to everyone about everything they sell. Use your eyes and look for quality. Sometimes a smell test is easier on wax than shatter.