What is Rick Simpson Oil (RSO)? What Can You Expect From It?

Rick Simpson Oil, also known as RSO, is one of the most iconic cannabis extracts available on the market. The story of its origin and its potential medical benefits are the reasons for its status.

It’s impossible to talk about RSO without mentioning the medical benefits. But, when it comes to the medical properties of cannabis, not enough research has been done to prove these benefits. Therefore, you should keep in mind that if you are thinking of using RSO to treat a specific health condition, we recommend talking to your doctor first. Putting its potential medical benefits aside, RSO is also considered the most potent cannabis extract available on the market.

Who Invented Rick Simpson Oil?

Rick Simpson Oil got its name after the famous cannabis activist and the RSO inventor himself, Rick Simpson. An engineer from Canada named Rick, first made RSO when he discovered three growths on his arm. These growths turned out to be cancer. With basic knowledge about cannabis and its potential health benefits, Rick decided to see if it could help him in his fight against this deadly disease.

He believed that most of the healing power in cannabis comes from THC. This inspired him to create an oil with extremely high THC content. He then used it as a topical on the parts of his body that were affected by cancer. After just a few days, the growths disappeared and Rick’s adventure with RSO began. He went on living the life of a cannabis activist who made high THC oil for those in need. Not only did he make the oil, but he also provided it for free.

There are many accounts of people who claim that Rick’s THC oil saved their lives or helped them manage pain that would normally consume opioids. His doctor never acknowledged the role of cannabis in the healing process. As far as the others who claim to have found the oil to be helpful, were considered anecdotal proof.

How to Consume Rick Simpson Oil

The two most important things to know about consuming RSO are:

  1. It is a very potent cannabis product that should be dosed carefully.
  2. It can not be smoked or dabbed or vaped, unless specified otherwise.


RSO, also known as phoenix tears, should be consumed in tiny amounts. It is recommended for one dosage to be of the size of a grain of rice. That being said, more experienced users suggest starting with a dose as small as half the size of a grain of rice.

Each case is different when using for medical purposes. In most instances, taken regularly for at least 12 weeks will greatly improve the health benefits. If you are taking it for reasons other than medical, only use it if you are an experienced cannabis user. If you do not have much experience with different cannabis products, especially those with high THC content, RSO is probably not the best product to start experimenting with.

How to Use RSO?

You can take RSO sublingually (under the tongue), as an edible or use it as a topical.
Because of its high flammability, you should avoid dabbing, vaping, or smoking it. When using it sublingually, the effects are usually felt within 10-15 minutes. Remember to start with a low dosage as taking too much is not pleasant.

Adding RSO to food will make the waiting time a bit longer, but the effects might be longer lasting rather than taking it sublingually. It’s possible for 2 hours to pass before feeling any effects. RSO has a powerful, earthy flavor and might change your food’s taste. A popular way of consuming RSO is on a cracker.

Using it as a topical is very common, especially among people who use it to combat certain skin conditions. Ideally, it would be put on a bandage or a patch and then placed on the affected area.


RSO has a thick consistency that can make it a bit challenging to use. It is incredibly sticky and gooey, so it’s pretty common to get it stuck to your lips and fingers. Fortunately, producers often think of the most comfortable way to consume it, and therefore often sell the RSO in a handy applicator.

How Does It Feel?

Most first-time users say the oil makes them feel extremely tired and sleepy. So sleepy it is hard to go about with your day and complete any tasks that require focus or attention.

Some users say the feeling of tiredness becomes less overwhelming after 4 weeks of regular use.

How Is RSO Made?

Rick believes that every person in the world who needs his oil should have access to it. Which is why he was making it for free.
Unfortunately, due to legal restraints, Rick is no longer able to make the oil himself. To continue his life’s mission, he decided to share how to make RSO with the world so every single person who needs it can make it for themselves.

Making it does not require complicated equipment. He made sure that most of the tools needed to make his oil can be found in any household. The process can be dangerous due to the use of highly flammable ingredients. It’s not suggested to make it in a space that’s not ventilated properly.

RSO is still illegal in many places worldwide due to its extremely high THC content. If you’re lucky enough to live in a country or a state where it is allowed, you do not need to make the oil yourself. Instead, you can purchase legal, lab-tested RSO in dispensaries.

Does It Work?

The short answer is – we don’t know for sure. We are just coming out of cannabis prohibition. Cannabis research is still very much behind. Much more research has to be done, but in order to do that, more money and time are needed.

Currently, researchers are looking into what cannabis can do for human health, including researching THC’s impact on cancer. Even though early research is not conclusive, it is very promising. Tests done on animals that suffered from cancer show THC can have properties that help the body fight cancer. All we can do now is wait and see.

Where Can you Learn More?

If you are one of many people fascinated by Rick Simpson and his product, there are plenty of places where you can learn more about the inventor and his creation.
Rick’s most famous book, “Phoenix Tears”, is a great starting point for those who want to understand the origins of the oil as well as the story behind the man himself.

Take Away

Rick Simpson Oil, also referred to as RSO or Phoenix Tears, is a high-THC cannabis concentrate that is very potent.
The oil gained its fame due to Rick’s story of using it to battle cancer, as well as his cannabis activism.

RSO is still illegal in many places due to its high THC content. Nevertheless it’s legal to purchase in California, and selected dispensaries (The Source included)

While researchers still need to find scientific proof of the health benefits, RSO has a vast group of proponents and therefore, is not likely to disappear from the cannabis conversation anytime soon.