Topical CBD application: your questions answered

Updated: Sep 5, 2020

CBD seems to come in all shapes and sizes these days. Here at CBD Products 420 we stock cannabidiol (CBD) as an oil, for use in a vaporiser or even as an edible!

But what about applying CBD directly to the skin?

Skin - or ‘topical’ - application, is becoming a popular way of using CBD. Does CBD rubbed or massaged onto your skin work? What does it do and what does the science say?

Read on to have all your questions answered about topical application of CBD. Find out more about how applying CBD to skin may help reduce pain, get rid of acne and even one day treat arthritis!

How CBD works (short version!)

Everyone has an ‘endocannabinoid’ system, which has receptors in cells all over the body! The cannabinoid (CBD) molecule can cause changes at these receptors. However, it does not work like THC – the chemical in the Cannabis Sativa plant which gets you ‘high’.

CBD can improve your sleep, response to pain, social anxiety and more things than we could ever list. Scientists are studying the use of CBD in the management of complex diseases such as multiple sclerosis!

CBD is completely legal in the UK, although THC is illegal. All products sold by CBD Products 420 contain no THC.

How applying CBD topically is different to ingesting CBD edibles or oil

By eating CBD or taking it in oil form, we ensure the CBD will enter our bloodstream and circulate around the body. However, by applying CBD to a specific area of the skin we can target the effects and potentially provide faster action.

The CBD on the skin will be absorbed through the pored, and pass through the epidermis. There are receptors at the subcutaneous layer of the skin which will respond to topically-applied CBD. A 2016 animal study proved that inflammation can be reduced after CBD is applied topically.

Rather than entering the bloodstream, the CBD will work on a local level. This means quick and focused CBD relief where you need it on your skin.

Why use CBD topically?

There are plenty of reasons to apply CBD to the skin!

1. Acne: A 2014 study found that CBD can inhibit oil production, meaning less clogged pores and fewer spots. The research also concluded that CBD has an anti-inflammatory effect, further combating acne.

2. Muscle aches: Research shows that CBD has an anti-inflammatory effect. By reducing inflammation, recovery and pain relief can begin much faster after exercise or an injury. This will in turn speed up a return to activity such as sport.

3. Pain: Anecdotally, arthritis sufferers have long been rubbing CBD to painful joints as a form of pain relief. The science is catching up – in 2016 an animal trial found that topical CBD application reducing inflammation and pain from arthritis without side effects. A 2017 study showed that CBD can potentially reduce nerve damage and inflammation due to osteoarthritis.

4. Dandruff control: Dandruff and dry, flaky skin is often a symptom of an inflamed scalp. CBD has potent anti-inflammatory properties that mean it may reduce irritation. On top of that, CBD can be used to manage sunburn as it reduces local pain and decreases inflammation!

What kind of CBD products can be applied topically?

CBD-infused creams and moisturisers can be administered onto the skin without fear of irritation. CBD lotions and salves are also effective. In terms of supporting hair health, CBD beard or hair oil may be an effective supplement too.

Should I try topically-applied CBD products?

We recommend applying CBD to your skin to help manage the conditions we have mentioned – and more! CBD can be used as part of an effective management plan for your well-being, and you should always consult a qualified physician before you start using it.

Don’t just take our word for it! There is plenty of research and science which supports the conclusion that CBD can help manage a wide range of problems. CBD rarely causes side effects – but discontinue use if you feel it is not helping you.