Writing strain reviews is a great way to share information, contribute to collective knowledge, and get noticed in the weed scene. Strain reviews help other community members get a sense of how a particular bud might affect them, as well as whether or not it may be useful for certain health ailments. We should know — we basically created an entire app (Did you know the MassRoots App is available on iOS and Android?) to host that experience.
While anyone can write a strain review, writing one that gets noticed can take some time and craftsmanship. To help your work stand out, there are a few tips and tricks to keep in mind. If you’re not sure where to start, here are some simple suggestions:
1. Make notes while smoking
The easiest way to begin a strain review is to break out the notepad and start scribbling. What is the first thing you notice about this strain? Was it harsh to smoke or vaporize? Did it have a delicious taste?
All of these observations are great fodder for a cannabis strain review. The more details you can record and recollect, the better the end result.
2. Write after consuming
Author Ernest Hemingway is famous for saying “write drunk, edit sober.” While cannabis is certainly preferable to alcohol, starting your review while under the influence can make for some entertaining and creative writing.
Writing about your experiences while they are unfolding can make for some candid and excellent reviews. However, if you’ve just puffed on a strong indica, chances are your writing will need to be edited before publishing.
3. Get specific
Ranking a strain simply on a 1 through 5 scale does not tell consumers much about the overall experience. What was it that made this strain great? Why did you give it a specific rating? The more thoughtful details you can provide, the better.
It’s also important, however, to make sure your review is concise and easy to read. Rambling on too much can get boring. The goal for a great review is to strike a balance between readability, helpfulness, and the details.
8 things to include in a cannabis strain review
Taking notes and writing freely about your experience can make for the beginnings of an excellent cannabis strain review. Yet, to really amp up the quality and helpfulness of your review, there are a handful informational tidbits that you may want to consider adding to your post. Some of these tidbits include:
1. Testing Data
Including testing data can give fellow community members a clearer picture of the potency of the strain. For some, higher potency strains may not be ideal. For others, a cannabis strain isn’t worth its stock unless it’s loaded with psychoactive THC. What type of strain are you smoking?
2. Flavor and aroma
What fragrances jump out at you when you first put your nose to your flower? Like wine, cannabis is a complex aromatic plant. The plant is thought to produce at least 100 different terpenes, which are the aroma molecules that give the plant it’s unique scent.
Including information about flavor and aroma is useful for many reasons. It can help community members identify the strain, as well as provide insight for cooking with the plant. Here are some common flavors and aromas to incorporate:
3. Dispensary, grower, or brand
Did you pick up your flower from a dispensary or a coffee shop? Why not give a shout out to your humble growers? Excellently grown cannabis deserves recognition. A strain review is also an excellent way to provide growers and distributors with honest feedback about their bud.
4. Bud structure and appearance
Were the buds dense or fluffy? Were the too dry or just right? Were they round and popcorn-like or conical and large? Was the sample covered in crystal trichomes or did it look low-quality? Was there any purple, red, pink, or black coloration?
Different strains produce different bud structures and come in a variety of colors. Making note of the sample’s overall appearance can give others an idea about the quality of the strain and how to identify the bud in the future. Including photos of the strain is always recommended.
5. General effects
The general effects are often considered the meat of a strain review. What type of experience did this strain provide for you? Was it an even split between a heavy body buzz and a soaring cerebral high?
Did the cannabis strain make you paranoid or make it easier to concentrate? Were you able to get off of the couch? Do you wish you had ordered a pizza?
6. Health condition information
Openly sharing health information is something many people feel uncomfortable about. However, noting whether or not a strain soothes pain, relieves muscle spasms, or eases insomnia is a very helpful addition when writing a cannabis strain review.
While some may feel bold enough to disclose particular conditions treated with a given strain, it’s not necessary to disclose a specific diagnosis in a strain review. Rather, keeping it general is often appreciated.
7. Recommended time of day
Would you recommend this strain for a morning, daytime, afternoon, evening, or nighttime smoke sesh?
Some strains may provide a delightful and uplifting high, but still might be a little too sedative for the morning or the day. Letting others know when to break out a specific strain paints a clearer picture of the general experience.
8. Tag your post
When you write a post in the MassRoots App, you’ll see an option to “add cannabis.” Tagging the type of weed you’re using will automatically catalogue your post as a review for others to find and give you a chance to add a star rating. Don’t forget to use other tags in your post to help the #MassFam like your work. For example, if you’re writing about some dank Girl Scout Cookies, don’t forget to add #GirlScoutCookies somewhere in the post!
The more likes you get, the more likely you are to be seen and even featured. Here are some popular hashtags to use:
- #Sativa, #Indica, #Hybrid