Cannabis and aesthetic appeal tend to go hand in hand in today’s saturated legal market. And while consumers are ultimately always after good bud, many are consistently operating under the idea that quality flower has to look pretty.
However, that couldn’t be further from the truth.
Just a few years ago, much of society was obsessed with image, but in almost-post-Instagram 2022, that isn’t necessarily the case anymore. So why are we placing these same unrealistic expectations on the appearance of the cannabis we consume?
As cannabis education continues to circulate and become common knowledge, consumers are able to be much more discerning with their cannabis purchases than they were in the days of simply taking whatever they could get their hands on.
Today, consumers know to look out for terpene profiles and cannabinoid makeup – a.k.a., all of the things that make your flower look pretty and smell good. However, there’s so much more to cannabis than its appearance, and if you’re looking to really benefit from your plant use, then shopping by looks isn’t the way to go.
Trim Cannabis for Quality, Not Appearance
Of course, to trace the source of this frequent misconception, we have to take it all the way back to the cultivator – or more specifically, the trimmer.
Many trimmers have altered their techniques in recent years to appease newer consumers, some of whom are looking for a beautiful photogenic nug to take home and post on social media. However, going this route is actually doing a disservice to the product…and the consumer.
Experts in the cultivation space have often pointed out that cannabis’s potency increases when it’s trimmed less, but it’s all about finding that sweet spot between finely pruned and trimmed to death.
Here are a few helpful tips to keep in mind when trimming your cannabis – or shopping for the finalized product at a dispensary:
- Prioritize genotype over phenotype. As we mentioned earlier, there are so many aspects to consider for quality cannabis, like terpene profile, cannabinoid makeup, density, and overall genetics.
Today, much of the industry has shifted to shine the spotlight on phenotype: i.e., easily observable characteristics like appearance or the environment it was grown in.
Of course, it’s definitely helpful to know where your flower came from and how it was grown, and beautiful buds are always a treat to look at. However, if these details aren’t translating to strong cannabis genetics that will deliver you with the wellness results you're looking for, then what’s the point?
If you’ve ordered groceries from Misfits, you’re well aware of the concept of there being more than meets the eye when it comes to the wellness of what you’re consuming.
Cannabis is no different. Pursue quality genetics, and the rest will follow.
- If you go with automation, go with automation that puts quality first. Automated trimming has become increasingly popular in the industry, especially for brands with a high consumer demand and a small cultivation team.
There’s nothing wrong with automated trimming, but you will run the risk of overdoing it for the sake of aesthetics and delivering consumers with a less-than product as a result.
To avoid this, keep quality at top of mind when shopping around for your automatic cannabis trimmer. Many brands will promise the glamour of speed and high output to processors, but good bud is what’s guaranteed to win in the long run.
- Don’t be afraid to go old school. With an onslaught of fancy new cultivation technology and technique, many growers will stray from tried-and-true practices to adopt the current fad. Don’t be that guy.
Instead, stay true to your roots – and the practices that have been working for the plant and patient for centuries – and prioritize natural flowers over anything else.
More growers are beginning to pay homage to cannabis cultivation techniques from the ’60s and ’70s – rough trims that might not look the prettiest, but will surely hit the hardest (and most effective).
These tried-and-true methods help keep as much of the bud intact as possible, and while they may not be aesthetically flawless, the bud structure will be retained.
In a world that has prioritized outside appearances for far too long, keep one thing in mind: it’s okay to have a cannabis bud look like a cannabis bud.
Nugs that resemble perfect little Christmas trees might make for a stunning Instagram feed, but if you’re looking to do anything with your flower beyond photographing it, the perfect little Christmas trees won’t get you very far.
Instead, it’s important for consumers to stay educated on what actually makes a cannabis product high-quality: how it feels in your body, and the ultimate effect it has on your quality of life.