Sheet of shatter concentrate broken up on a black table

What Is Shatter, a Cannabis Concentrate?

If you’re looking for a unique cannabis concentrate to try, look no further than shatter. Its amber hues and translucent, glass-like appearance make it unlike anything else on the market. In this guide, we’ll get into the details of shatter, including:

  • What is Shatter?
  • Where Does Shatter Come From and How is it Made?
  • How Do You Use Shatter?
  • What is Marijuana Shatter From a Dispensary?
  • Is Shatter the Same as Dabs?
  • How is Shatter Different from Wax?

What is Shatter?

Shatter, also called shatter wax, is a cannabis concentrate named for its glass-like consistency that shatters like glass when pressure is applied to it. Shatter comes in a variety of golden shades, from pale yellow to deep amber, and it’s typically translucent. 

While it certainly has more potency than marijuana flower, it’s not the most potent cannabis concentrate available. Still, you should always start slow with a low dose of shatter until you know how your endocannabinoid system reacts to the product.   

Where Does Shatter Come From and How is It Made?

Shatter is made using the solvent-based extraction process. The manufacturer forces an extract, typically butane, through the marijuana flower to separate the trichomes from the plant. This creates an oil that may be further purified using a variety of additional techniques. From there, the mixture is heated to remove any butane from the final product. Finally, the concentrate is spread into a thin layer and left to rest. This allows it to form into a clear, amber, hard material we call shatter. 

It’s important to note that shatter is not a product that should ever be made at home, due to the volatility of butane. When made in a professional setting, shatter is created using a system that prevents gas from leaving the closed-loop system. This is the only way to safely make shatter.

Trichomes contain a variety of cannabinoids. Learn more about them in our Guide to Cannabinoids.   

How Do You Use Shatter?

The most common way to consume shatter is with a dab rig. The shatter is placed on the nail and heated. The moment the shatter is placed on the hot nail, it starts to vaporize for the consumer to inhale. 

You can also experience shatter with a vape pen, but it has to be a vaporizer with an atomizer. This means it’s designed to be used with concentrates. The process is similar: you place the shatter in the heating chamber, which will melt your shatter and turn it into a vapor. Then, you inhale the vapor. 

Want to learn more about how to consume concentrates? Check out our guide!  

Answering a Few Cannabis Shatter FAQs

Our budtenders get a variety of questions every day about shatter. We’ve compiled a few of them and our cannabis experts’ answers to ensure you have the information you need before purchasing this concentrate. 

What Is Marijuana Shatter From a Dispensary?

Shatter from a dispensary is a professionally made cannabis extract that looks like glass and can be enjoyed using a dab rig or vaporizer. 

Is Shatter the Same as Dabs?

Yes and no. The term “dabs” refers to the use of concentrates in a dab rig. Technically, shatter can be dabbed, and other concentrates can be too. In other words, shatter is a dab but not all dabs are shatter. 

How is Shatter Different From Wax?

Shatter is known for its hard, glass-like consistency. Wax is soft and easily formed. Both can be enjoyed via a dab rig or vaporizer, and both have varying levels of THC potency. Some cannabis connoisseurs do prefer wax over shatter because it’s a little easier to put on the dab rig and to measure the amount of concentrate you need. However, the choice generally comes down to personal preference.

Purchase Shatter

Shatter is a unique cannabis concentrate available at most licensed dispensary locations. Plus, there are cannabis experts on hand to help you decide what concentrate you may enjoy and what tools you need to consume it.  

Recreational Cannabis is not available in all states. Cannabis is for medical use only and may only be used by certified patients in Maryland, New York, and Pennsylvania. State laws impact what dispensaries can and can’t sell to recreational customers and medical marijuana patients. Not every type of product, consumption method, dosage form, or potency mentioned on this blog will be permitted in all locations.