CBD & Acne

CBD Oil can be used for Acne which is a condition that occurs when excess oil, dirt, and dead skin cells clog pores. The bacteria Propionibacterium acnes can build up in the pores, causing angry, red blemishes. Acne treatment involves keeping the skin clean, free from acne causing bacteria, and cutting back on excess oil that can clog the skin.

People have been using natural treatments in order to tackle persistent skin problems. CBD has now become one of them!


You can consume cannabinoids from the cannabis plant, such as CBD, and they will interact with the ECS. They do so by binding to receptors that are present throughout the brain, central nervous system and on tissues throughout the body, causing their physiological effect. One such effect, when applied to the skin, is reducing the symptoms of acne.

Acne is most commonly found in teenagers when going through puberty, but it can affect people of all ages. 

The area around the face and upper body have the most oil-producing glands, these oil glands (sebaceous glands) are connected to your hair follicles and can result in acne for four main reasons:

Excess oil production – The sebaceous glands can overproduce oil (or sebum) giving a greasy look. This can lead to the blocking of the follicles.

Follicles become clogged by oil and dead skin – When the follicles are blocked, they become inflamed and a build-up of dead skin cells occurs. This problem gets progressively worse because more oil and dead skin continue to be produced and can result in cyst-like lumps forming.

Build-up of bacteria – The inability to clear the pores can result in them becoming infected with bacteria, which can worsen inflammation, compounding the problem.


Hormones, medication and stress – Several factors can make acne worse, including androgens, which are hormones released through puberty which cause the sebaceous glands to enlarge, causing blockages. Certain medications and stress have also been demonstrated as causes of worsening acne.

How to use CBD for your acne

A common misconception in using CBD oil to treat acne is that it needs to be applied directly to the affected area. While CBD has anti-inflammatory effects when applied to the skin, pores that are already blocked will be difficult for CBD to penetrate through. CBD is an oil and putting this directly onto oily skin can cause further blockages to the pores which subsequently result in the onset or worsening of acne.

CBD works for acne by reducing the production of oil from the sebaceous glands, and it does so by interacting with the ECS. A few drops of CBD oil placed under the tongue twice a day totalling around 20 mg of CBD is enough to decrease excessive sebum production and reduce the onset of acne.

Once the skin has begun the clear, you can then begin to use topicals with CBD to apply directly to the skin as a lotion or a cream. It is advised that you continue to ingest CBD for acne during this stage.

Several studies have been conducted on using CBD for acne, with positive results and conclusions: –

  • A 2014 study that concludes that CBD inhibits oil production and it has anti-inflammatory effects on oil-producing glands, concluding that CBD is a “promising therapeutic agent’

  • A 2019 study shows CBD-ointments may reduce the appearance of scars from inflammatory skin conditions

The studies look promising but don’t present enough thorough research yet for CBD to be recommended as a viable, medical treatment. However, anecdotal evidence on the internet strongly backs using CBD oil for acne.

Another benefit of CBD oil is that it has been found to have significant soothing properties. Its substantial skin-calming and skin-normalizing effects can help minimize issues related to skin sensitivity, including redness and reactivity. Since all skin types are affected daily by environmental stressors, CBD’s soothing mechanism can help keep everyone’s skin in check.

Final Words:  As long as it’s extracted within the proper parameters, CBD oil does have benefits for skin. We’re excited to see how the research behind CBD oil’s topical benefits continues to grow, and anticipate it becoming an integral step of many people’s skin care routines.