Using CBD topicals: Benefits and drawbacks
CBD can help ease pain and improve skin health, but for some, it can cause allergic reactions or may not be effective enough.
- Focus on specific areas for localised benefits.
- No intoxicating effects, as topicals do not enter the bloodstream.
- Convenient and mess-free application for on-the-go use.
- It may improve overall skin health with added nourishing ingredients.
- It may help ease pain in specific parts of the body.
- Available in various formats such as creams, lotions, balms, oils, and salves.
- Variable effectiveness; results can vary from person to person.
- Some people may experience skin sensitivity reactions or may be allergic to the product.
- Quality CBD topicals can be relatively more expensive than regular skincare.
- It provides localised relief but doesn’t impact the entire body.
- Dosing can be difficult with products like lotions and creams.
CBD vs. THC Topicals – What’s the difference?
CBD topicals are like a calming balm, targeting areas of discomfort on the skin without affecting the rest of the body. They’re known for easing inflammation & pain, reducing redness, and soothing irritation.
THC topicals try to mirror this localised approach but often trail behind CBD in their ability to penetrate the skin’s defences. It is for this reason that almost every cannabis-infused topical product in the market – oils, balms, lotions, creams, salves – often contains cannabidiol as the main ingredient.
However, those needing round-the-clock help for ongoing pain or chronic conditions can use THC transdermal patches. These patches slowly release THC into your bloodstream, giving you a steady wave of relief that lasts for hours. This can also cause users to get a little high.
Transdermal patches allow the body to absorb small amounts of THC over an extended period. Unlike smoking or ingesting, where a higher concentration of THC hits the bloodstream quickly, the slow release from patches aims to provide the medicinal benefits of THC without a strong psychoactive effect.
Ultimately, whether you choose a CBD topical for spot-on pain relief or a THC patch for continuous support depends on the kind of comfort you’re looking for.
Are there any side effects of using CBD on the skin?
While CBD is not typically the cause of side effects in topicals, users may experience reactions due to other ingredients in the product. These side effects may include:
- Skin irritation
- Skin discolouration
- Dry skin
In such cases, it is best to apply a small amount of the lotion or balm on your skin, see if there is any unwanted reaction, and then proceed with the proper massage.
CBD topicals are considered one of the safer methods for using CBD, as they do not involve inhalation or ingestion, which can impact the lungs or liver.
Products like creams and serums allow CBD’s therapeutic effects to be localised and immediate by bonding with cell receptors in the body. However, how these products interact with people may vary, and it is advised to try different types to see which works best.
Speaking to a dermatologist or a doctor can also help you find a suitable product for your skin type.
While the effectiveness of CBD topicals is still being explored, many find relief from various ailments using creams and lotions. Much research shows that CBD may help with muscle soreness, joint inflammation, and skin conditions.
For the best experience, Look for high-quality CBD products tested by third-party labs for accurate concentration and purity. Transparency matters—reliable CBD brands openly share where and how their products are made.
Always consult your doctor if you are planning to use CBD topicals for specific skin conditions for the best advice.