Cannabis has had quite the year. Namely, companies learned the industry is hella lucrative – it's a multi-billion dollar industry – and politicians gleaned supporting legalization can earn them some political sway. This year also ushered in a massive wave of luxe cannabis products and accessories. It's safe to say what might have been considered the plant's edge is now officially sanded and shellacked smooth. But just because something goes mainstream doesn't mean it's no longer cool. Look at craft beer! Now cannabis has completed a similar metamorphosis. And five strains in particular reigned 2017 supreme.
Cannabis, like alcohol, has many nuances to consider. Just as you'd never sidle up to a bar for a pint of "alcohol," you should know more about cannabis than to request simply "weed." This year saw a rise in appreciation for CBD, a major cannabinoid present in marijuana. THC, the heady component that makes users feel high, is the other major cannabinoid in cannabis. CBD doesn't affect the mind; instead, it's jam-packed with medicinal applications, spanning from treating menstrual cramps to epilepsy. As stigma surrounding cannabis wanes, patients interested in non-pharmaceutical treatments have more and more CBD-heavy options.
Keep in mind, even though these strands dominated 2017, cannabis is a highly individualistic experience. The strain that gets your flying phobic cousin calm and airborne might make another user fall victim to a surprise couch nap. As Portland, Oregon,-based Farma collective's Sam Heywood puts it: "The best strain is the one that suits you today." So tune in, light up and tune out. Here's five great options for celebrating the end of one really weird year.