Shatter 101: What Is Shatter?

Shatter 101: What Is Shatter?

Whether you’re a seasoned cannabis user or a newcomer, you’ve probably heard of shatter. This potent cannabis concentrate has become a go-to choice for those seeking an intense high. But what exactly is shatter and why has it become so popular?

Our comprehensive guide about shatter will help you learn more about this popular cannabis concentrate. We’ll cover how it’s made, explore its benefits, and learn how to consume it responsibly. From its unique consistency to its powerful potency and distinct appearance, we'll break down all you need to know about this high-cannabinoid concentrate.

What Is Shatter?

cannabis shatter concentrate on dabbing stick

Marijuana shatter is a type of concentrate that has gained popularity for its distinctive appearance, potent cannabinoid content, and unique consistency. Its name derives from its glass-like texture and the fact that it's prone to shatter when manipulated.


Shatter's consistency is one of its defining characteristics, setting it apart from other cannabis concentrates. 

It typically has a hard, glass-like structure that can easily break or "shatter" into pieces, hence the name. This brittle consistency results from the specific processing techniques used in its production, which align the molecules in a highly ordered, regular pattern. 

Shatter is usually smooth, clear, and solid, but its consistency can vary slightly. For instance, it may take on a more pull-and-snap consistency at room temperature, which means it can be stretched or pulled before it breaks.


Shatter is renowned for its potency. It is one of the most potent cannabis concentrates on the market, often containing around 60-70% THCa. This high concentration of cannabinoids can provide a powerful psychoactive effect, making THCa shatter a popular choice for experienced cannabis consumers. 

The high potency also means that only a small amount is needed to experience its effects, which can make it a more economical choice for some users. However, new or casual users should approach with caution, as the intensity of the effects can be overwhelming.


The appearance of shatter is another feature that distinguishes it from other concentrates. Shatter is usually translucent and can range in color from light, golden yellow to darker amber, much like honey or maple syrup. 

However, variations in color can occur based on factors such as the age of the plant material used and the specific extraction method used.

History of Shatter

The origins of shatter can be traced back to the 1990s when cannabis enthusiasts began to explore more effective and potent ways to consume the plant. The birth of this concentrate, however, didn't occur until the early 2010s when extraction technologies advanced significantly.

Initially, shatter was confined to the underground cannabis scene due to its complex production process. It wasn't until the legalization of cannabis in various places worldwide that shatter became widely accessible.

Nowadays, it's recognized as one of the most potent cannabis concentrates on the market, praised for its purity, flavor, and high THC content. Despite its relatively short history, shatter's impact on the cannabis industry is undeniable, and it continues to shape the future of cannabis consumption.

Benefits of Shatter

shatter concentrate in glass jar

Cannabis shatter, with its striking clarity and high potency, is much more than just a visually appealing extract. Its popularity can be attributed to many of its benefits, making it a compelling choice for both recreational and medical users.

  • Potency: One of the primary advantages of shatter is its exceptional potency. With THCa content often reaching up to ~70%, shatter offers an intense experience for users seeking a powerful high. This potency also means less product is needed for desired effects.
  • Purity: Shatter's manufacturing process involves multiple stages of purification, resulting in a product free from impurities and excess plant material. This purity not only contributes to shatter's unique glass-like appearance but also ensures a smoother, cleaner user experience.
  • Flavor profile: Although weaker than other forms of concentrate, Shatter retains a strong and complex flavor profile, thanks to the preservation of terpenes during its extraction process. For those who appreciate the aromatic nuances of different cannabis strains, shatter provides a flavorful journey that is as enjoyable as the high it induces.
  • Medical use: The high concentration of THCa in shatter can offer profound relief for medical marijuana patients suffering from conditions such as chronic pain, inflammation, and lack of appetite. Its potent nature can provide rapid and effective symptom relief where other forms of cannabis may fall short.
  • Long shelf-life: When stored correctly, shatter can retain its potency and flavor for a considerably longer period than other cannabis extracts, making it a practical choice for infrequent users.
  • How Is Shatter Made?

    bags of dried cannabis

    Shatter is created through an intricate process that extracts the desirable compounds from the cannabis plant, such as THC, CBD, and terpenes. While the process might seem complex, it ultimately boils down to two key stages: extraction and purification.


    The first step in creating shatter and wax products involves extracting the cannabinoid-rich oils from the cannabis plant. This is typically achieved using a solvent like butane through a process known as butane hash oil (BHO) extraction. 

    The cannabis plant matter (i.e. cannabis flower or trim) is soaked in the solvent, which dissolves the essential oils from the plant. This mixture is then collected for the next step. 

    It's important to note that working with solvents can be highly dangerous due to their flammable nature and should only be done by trained professionals in a controlled environment. Always source your shatter from reputable, legal dispensaries to guarantee the purity and safety of the product.


    After the extraction phase, the next step is to purge the solvent from the extract. This is usually accomplished through a process called vacuum purging, which involves applying heat and vacuum to the extract. 

    The heat causes the solvent to evaporate, while the vacuum helps to pull the solvent out. This process is repeated multiple times to ensure that no residual solvent remains, as it can be harmful if consumed.

    Once the solvent has been adequately purged, what remains is a translucent, amber-colored extract that hardens into a glass-like consistency as it cools. The process of making shatter is a careful balancing act between preserving the maximum amount of desirable compounds and removing any unwanted materials or residual solvents.

    Filter Media Sample Request

    Interested in trying our filter media? We would love to send you some! Browse our products, then fill out this form and someone from our team will be in touch to finalize your request.

    Let's Do It

    How to Consume Shatter

    a pair of hands uses a tool to gently lif a thin piece of dark thc concentrate from the surface of a table

    Given its potency and unique physical properties, consuming shatter weed is a bit different from other traditional forms of cannabis. There are a few common methods used to consume shatter wax, each providing a distinct experience.


    Dabbing is the most popular method for consuming shatter. This process involves a device called a dab rig, which is similar to a bong but designed for concentrates. 

    You place a small piece of shatter on a heated surface (known as a nail or banger), and the shatter vaporizes almost instantaneously. You then inhale the vapor through the rig. Dabbing can be intense, particularly for beginners, due to the high temperature and the potency of the concentrate.

    Adding to Flower

    For those who prefer smoking cannabis the traditional way, shatter can be added to a joint or a bowl of cannabis. 

    You can sprinkle small pieces of shatter onto your ground-up cannabis before rolling a joint, or place it on top of the cannabis in a pipe or bong. When lit, the shatter will melt and mix with the cannabis, enhancing the potency of your smoking experience.


    Shatter can be used to make potent cannabis-infused edibles. However, it's important to note that this extract needs to be decarboxylated (heated) before it can be used in cooking to activate the THCa into THC. Once this process is done, it can be incorporated into any type of food or drink.

    Keep in mind, high-potency concentrates like shatter can increase tolerance, increase the risk of dependence, and result in severe withdrawal symptoms, such as restlessness, sleep difficulties, decreased appetite, irritability, and various forms of physical discomfort.

    While these symptoms are rarely dangerous, they can be quite unpleasant. Therefore, it is important to monitor your usage and listen to your body's responses. 

    If you notice signs of dependence or if your consumption begins to interfere with your daily activities, it may be time to reassess your relationship with the product. If you have concerns about your use, consider speaking with a healthcare provider or a mental health professional.

    High Potency and Flavorful Experience with Shatter

    Shatter's unique properties offer an elevated cannabis experience, allowing consumers to appreciate the nuances of their favorite strains in a whole new light. It underscores the remarkable versatility and potential of cannabis plants, challenging the conventional understanding of what cannabis can be.

    However, it's essential to remember that with great potency comes great responsibility. Shatter, while offering numerous benefits, should be approached with respect and caution, particularly by those new to cannabis. Start slow, be mindful, and always prioritize safety.

    Older Post
    Newer Post
    Close (esc)


    Use this popup to embed a mailing list sign up form. Alternatively use it as a simple call to action with a link to a product or a page.

    Age verification

    By clicking enter you are verifying that you are old enough to consume alcohol.

    Shopping Cart

    Your cart is currently empty.
    Shop now