More women than ever are choosing weed. For sex, sure. But also for uterine fibroids. For hot flashes. For postpartum depression. For migraines. For a million other reasons. But we rarely hear a damn thing about this in dispensaries or almost anywhere else. Have you ever noticed that?
Even though—and this is facts—women are the fastest growing group of cannabis consumers across all age groups, women's reasons for choosing weed just aren’t discussed out in the open. There's shame. There's stigma. There's legality. And then there's a whole lot of super frustrating (and just plain racist, sexist, and ridiculous) stereotypes to contend with, too.
But we can change that. First step: talking about it. Because the more we women speak up, the more it will become accepted that it is 100% possible to love weed and also be a productive, creative, compassionate, and empowered member of society. So, in that spirit, we asked 500 women from all over the United States to share their reasons for choosing weed. Here's what we learned.
First things first. All 500 of the women we surveyed self-identified as cannabis consumers. The majority (55%) said they use all cannabinoids—THC, CBD, and everything in between. Many (38%) said they preferred the high-inducing effects of THC only. And just a small percentage (7%) said they only reach for non-intoxicating cannabinoids like CBD.
Regardless of which cannabinoids they prefer, the majority of women surveyed said they consume some form of cannabis pretty regularly—68% consume daily; and 21% consume weekly, meaning that a total of 89% are regularly consuming. Not a lot of dabblers here.
Everyone's got a "whoops" story when it comes to edibles—but apparently that hasn't stopped them from becoming a favorite. Thank goodness. Because an edible high—when dosed correctly—can be one of the most delightful highs around. It can also a great way to micro-dose. Next most popular? Old school flower—whether smoked in a pre-roll joint, bong, one-hitter, pipe, or rolled on your own.
One side note: dabs. They weren't on our multiple choice list, but a handful of women said that was actually their top choice.
If you feel like you consumed more cannabis in the last year, you're not alone. Of the 500 women we surveyed, 49% said that their consumption in 2020 was way up. But duh—this year has been a hell-scape of stress, uncertainty, and fear. Plus, we were all stuck indoors. Working from home. With kids. With partners. Or all alone.
Whether you're using weed to enhance your connection to yourself, your spirituality (whatever that means to you), to increase fun, improve your sex life, or reduce physical pain, the benefits are also likely to reduce anxiety, improve sleep, and uplift your mood—it's all related. "As a mom, wife, and business owner, I feel like I'm constantly doing things for others," said one respondent. "Cannabis is the one thing I do solely for my own enjoyment. It helps keep me inspired.”
Among the other major issues that women said was contributing to high stress levels included worries over finances, family, racism, social unrest, mental health, and climate change. As one respondent put it: “Cannabis helps me tune out the world outside, and tune into my own needs… A sweet escape and temporary relief from all the craziness that’s happened in the past year.”
With so many stressors contributing to anxiety, sleeplessness, and low moods, it's heartening that so many women are consuming weed because it helps them feel more calm and positive. “It helps me feel grounded. It helps me relax. It helps me connect. It helps me feel like me," one respondent explained.
And a majority (67%) also said that weed helps them feel more creative, while just under half (48%) said it helps them feel more motivated. So much for the lazy stoner stereotype. “It’s helped me love myself more and have compassion for myself... which trickles down to truly feeling this way about others—loved ones and strangers alike,” said one respondent.
But emotional well-being and mental health aren't the only reasons women are choosing weed. There are tons of physical reasons women are choosing weed, and topping the list was period-related issues. Other top answers included chronic pain, IBS, migraines, and even pregnancy and postpartum depression; many other women wrote in that's it's helped them with endometriosis, PTSD, OCD, and Fibromyalgia. “It's helped me get to know what my personality is like without chronic pain,” said one respondent. "I wish I had used it more during menopause," said another. "It's such a game-changer."
The benefits of trading wine for weed are beginning to gain momentum. Other substances that cannabis has helped women give up include antidepressants (12%), opioids and other painkillers (10%), and nicotine (9%). “It helped me stop taking prescription sleep meds," said one woman. "I never thought I would be able to sleep without them. I had chronic, severe insomnia for 20 years.”
When it comes to using cannabis to improve sex—whether for reducing painful sex, increasing natural lubrication, increasing physical sensation, or helping "get in the moment"—the majority of women surveyed said they combine the two regularly. And their favorite methods of consumption for sex? Smoking or vaping (66%); edibles (39%); cannabis-infused lubes (21%); and cannabis-infused suppositories (5%). As one respondent put it, "I think more women would use cannabis if they knew how great—and easy—it can make sex, masturbation, and self love.”