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My Evoxe Balance+ vaporizer pen arrived in the mail, looking so sleek and elegant – so much so that I really couldn’t figure out how to use it. I tried sucking on both ends but nothing happened. No instructions were included so I dashed over to the FAQ section of the website and alas confirmed which end of the pen I should pull from.

As an avid medical cannabis user for the past fifteen years (late bloomer), I love nothing more than trying out new medication methods with edibles being, by far, my favorite form of delivery. 20-50 gram doses of a mint-dipped Korova cookie is my go-to for easing the chronic pain associated with neck injuries from multiple car accidents, hypothyroidism, endometriosis, migraines, depression/anxiety, and nerve pain.

I air on the side of needing higher doses to relieve pain but don’t love the sometimes distracting effect of THC so it was inevitable that I’d dabble in the world of CBD. The CBD pen has been a game changer for my days in the office. No smell, no stoney, and enough of the calming and anti-inflammatory medicinal properties to keep chronic pain from ruining my work day.

Very excited to test out a product that combines the healing elements of lab-tested, whole plant extract CBD with terpenes and organic essential oils, I put my lips around what I now knew to be the correct end of the pen and inhaled. Nothing. A little stronger of an inhale. Still nothing. So I used all my might to activate the pen with a final inhale until I felt my mid back go into spasm. True story. Now I really needed to medicate.

At first, I wasn’t sure how I felt about the taste – fruity from the tangerine with a distinct smoky aftertaste from the frankincense and a hint of floral essence undertones. I also needed a little adjustment time to fully appreciate tasting essential oils, as opposed to smelling them. The taste grew on me, though, and I’ve found myself enjoying the citrus aftertaste after using the Balance+ pen.

Overall, the pen had a very mild calming effect experienced as a sort of settling into my physical body and releasing of the tense position it holds without my realizing. For my pain level, though, I need something with a little bit more of a punch but it’s a wonderful addition to my medicinal toolbox. Its sleek, stealth packaging makes it easy to take to work with me. However, be forewarned if you have asthma, weak lungs, or weak intercostal muscles (like me, apparently), unless the pen can be adjusted to require less lung power for activation.

When I reached out during non-business hours to ask about the materials used to make the disposable pens, I heard back within an hour that they are made of recyclable aluminum. The battery can be recycled but the cartridge and healing element inside the cartridge can’t be. However, they are working on that so once they have that part figured out, I’ll feel better about making these pens part of an ongoing effort to live a healthier, more sustainable life.

A final bonus find was the Evoxe blog, including a number of Spotify playlists created to match the moods of Evoxe pens. I’m looking forward to testing out Engage and their other flavors and exploring the different combinations of scents, tastes, effects, and sounds. Thanks, Evoxe, for expanding my journey of the senses.