The difference between flax and cannabis

Among the many types, hemp is also a fiber of many wide genres, but flax and cannabis are often recognized as the same hemp. However, it is a fiber with a different personality. So what are the differences and distinctions between flax and cannabis? Here, let's introduce the differences between these two plants and the products that can be made.

What is the difference between flax and cannabis?

Flax and cannabis have the same word hemp, but they are similar and different. When you hear cannabis, you may not feel familiar with it because you have a strong image of marijuana. Here, I would like to introduce the difference between flax and cannabis.

What is flax?

Flax is also a plant of the flax family and is famous as an annual plant. Also known as numegoma, annual flax, and red sesame. The history of overseas production is deep, and it was made in Hokkaido from the Meiji era to the early Showa era in order to produce fiber that can be taken from the stem part.

The fiber that can be obtained from flax stalks is called linen, and it not only absorbs water, but also has the property of becoming more familiar to the skin as it is used, and it is also famous as a versatile fabric that can be worn all year round.

In addition, the oil that can be obtained from seeds (linseed oil) is useful as paints, oil paintings, and health foods. Recently, α-linolenic acid, which is a component of flaxseed oil, has been attracting attention as an essential fatty acid that is not produced in the body, and it can be said that it is an indispensable plant for Japanese life.

Reference: The material of linen is the fiber of a plant called flax.

What is cannabis (hemp)?

Cannabis is a dried, resinified, or liquefied hemp corolla or leaf of the hemp family. The ones made from flowers are called cannabis, and the resins are called hashish and charas. About 60 kinds of ingredients contained have pharmacological action, and their history is old and have been used since BC. Although it is a regulated drug in many countries, there are many countries where it is legal as a luxury item. Medical cannabis may be tolerated in a limited way. You can get cannabis ingredients by smoking, vaporizing, eating and drinking. You know that you are punished as illegal in Japan.

Cannabis is also known as hemp as a fiber. In Japan, it has long been used for shimenawa and cannabis (Onusa), which is also used for purifying at shrines.

However, the ingredients of cannabis are internationally restricted because they cause poisoning, and the Convention on Narcotic Drugs requires restrictions on production and possession. However, since there was no scientific evidence, the evidence has been reviewed since 2016. In addition, research is progressing that it can be used for medical purposes, and it is a plant that can be expected to change its usage in the future.

Differences between flax and cannabis: plants and production areas

Linen made from flax and hemp made from cannabis are both hemp, but what's the difference? Both are stronger than cotton and have been used for a long time. Let's unravel the difference from the plants and production areas. Here are the characteristics of two plants that appear to be similar but dissimilar.

Description of flax plants and production areas

The origin of flax is from the Caucasus region to the middle region, and it has been cultivated mainly in the Middle East and Europe since ancient times, and is now a popular plant cultivated all over the world. Since the cold climate is suitable for cultivation, it is mainly cultivated in Hokkaido in Japan and has been rotated for 6 to 7 years.

Flax is not only for industrial use, but also for horticultural species, and because the flowers are pretty and not difficult to cultivate, more and more people are growing them in a gardening manner. In Hokkaido, flax is cultivated not only at home but also in roadside trees and parks.

The oil that can be obtained from seeds is called flaxseed oil, and it is famous not only for oil paintings and paints, but also as an edible and healthy food. In addition, the linen fabric that uses the stem as a fiber has good breathability and is famous as a natural material with outstanding comfort.

Description of cannabis (hemp) plants and production areas

Cannabis (Hemp) is a plant of the Cannabis family. It will develop mainly in Asia. Cannabis (hemp) and stoner (ramie) are also well made in Asia.

In Japan, it is used as a coin for the shrine and is also an old material. In addition, the clothing dedicated to the shrine was also woven with hemp and ramie, making it a very durable and valuable material. There are various types of hemp used as a textile material, but hemp has been used in Japan for a long time. It is called cannabis to classify other types of hemp, but it is said that hemp grows fast and grows big, so the word "cannabis" was added with "large".

Differences between flax and cannabis: fabric and comfort

I hope you've found that flax and cannabis are similar and different. So what about the fabric and the actual comfort? Applications also change due to the difference in fibers. Also, by using each of them to make the best use of their awesomeness, it will be a product that uses only its strengths. Let's introduce the difference in fabric and comfort between flax and cannabis here.

Flax fabric and comfort

Linen is so thin and tough that it is said to be "a fabric woven with moonlight." Since the fibers themselves are thin, they can be worn coolly in the summer, and because they have a gloss, they are also useful as underwear.

Linen is called "orchid" in French, and it is said that women's underwear made of high quality linen has come to be called "lingerie". Linen is characterized by its soft texture that blends well with bare skin.

In addition, linen has the characteristic that it is easy to remove stains among natural materials. It is strong against washing and is ideal for everyday wear. Not only that, the softness increases with each wash, and the color of the fabric becomes clearer from white to white. As you can see from the example of a shirt, it is characterized by its supple, smooth and light comfort among natural materials. Linen fabrics are loved by many generations because they have excellent breathability and heat retention, they are not sticky due to their breathability even when they sweat, and they do not lose their warmth even in winter due to their heat retention.

Reference: Embroidery and linen. How to choose and enjoy the fabric.

Cannabis fabric and comfort

Cannabis (hemp) is strong, sturdy and durable. Looking at the mosquito nets that have remained since ancient times, the fabric is so familiar that it is sometimes woven with hemp.

Unlike linen, it's tough and cool, but it can be a little stiff and irritating to your bare skin. It is not recommended for delicate people such as those with sensitive skin.

However, 100% hemp material is effective against UV rays. Since the UV blocking rate is 90% or more, even those who cannot apply sunscreen to their skin can take proper measures against UV rays by wearing them with innerwear. In addition, it has natural antibacterial properties, can prevent the growth of bacteria, and has the effect of preventing the source of odors. It is recommended because it keeps the pillowcases and sheets used every day clean. Hemp, which has a good reputation for its firmness, is suitable for products that can take advantage of its property of not losing its shape. For example, it is perfect for bags, hats, and other items that are durable and do not easily lose their shape.


How was it? I'm sure some of you may think that cannabis didn't have a good image, but I think you could understand that even textiles are familiar to us in our daily lives. Also, if you can understand the difference between the linen made from flax and the hemp material made from cannabis, you will be able to know more about the material of hemp. Both are materials with a long history that can be used with 100% natural materials. It would be good to make it a part of your life as a material with a natural taste, just as you put additive-free or natural things in your life. It's also a lot of fun to find out the characteristics of the material while making the best use of the differences and characteristics. Please use it as a reference when choosing fabrics, accessories, and fabrics.

Reference: Where flax is cultivated in Hokkaido

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