Does Smoking CBD Cause Acne? | What Does The Research Say?

Is it true that smoking CBD can cause acne?

For some reason, people think that smoking weed can cause acne. I believe that people are misconstruing this statement, and think that since smoking marijuana can cause acne (which it can’t) then CBD can cause acne. CBD is a cannabinoid just like THC, which is the dominant cannabinoid in most strains of marijuana. People just assume since the two are similar, you can get similar side effects.

First of all – this is not necessarily true.

It‘s quite prudent to say that smoking CBD causes acne. Those of us who have acne-prone skin or a chronic acne issue might face different results when it comes to smoking CBD flowers and having acne breakouts. Some claim that smoking CBD flowers worsens issues of oily skin and causes acne, while others advocate CBD as being beneficial for acne-prone skin. Many factors impact acne breakouts including: hormone levels, physical activity levels, skin types, genetics, etc.

Since CBD is legal now in many US states for medical and recreational use, research on the side-effects of CBD use is still being updated almost monthly. The cannabis plant, which is where CBD comes from, still has numerous undiscovered potentials of its impact on physical and mental health.

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Here we will discuss the impacts of smoking CBD has on acne. Does it cure or worsen your skin health?

Let’s get started!

Does Smoking CBD Cause Acne? | All You Need To Know

The cannabis plant is full of outstanding compounds that are slowly giving a better name to the cannabis family plant. However, there are some precautions that people need to take when it comes to smoking CBD flower. Can this have an impact on acne, or other areas of facial skin health?

According to Medical News Today, “There is no clear line between smoking and acne breakouts.”

Smoking CBD became popular shortly after the Farm Bill of 2018 decriminalized hemp, and hemp-based products. Similar to the way in which marijuana is smoked, CBD can be smoked. I, personally, find no enjoyment or benefits of it, but some people enjoy CBD cigarettes or smoking pure CBD flowers. They look just like marijuana flowers, but have little to no THC content in them.

Why Does Smoking CBD Cause Acne Outbreaks?

Let’s first discuss what normally causes acne.

Acne starts to pop up on the skin when skin pores are clogged up with dead skin cells and excess ‘sebum’ that later causes bacteria production. Sebum is simply the oil that is produced from your skin. This bacteria can lead to the breakouts of acne that you may be familiar with. This type of acne is not associated with a specific age group (such as teenagers), but it can affect anyone of any age limit.

Smoking CBD doesn’t increase oil production of the skin. Acne usually occurs due to hormonal changes, increased appetite, and certain mental conditions such as stress and depression.

Again, smoking CBD will not cause acne.

What are some of the other factors to consider when smoking CBD? This is important to discuss, because while smoking CBD alone will not directly cause acne, it can indirectly lead to a potential breakout.

Changes in Appetite

Similar to THC, CBD use may cause people to having a craving for high-caloric and oily food. Smoking CBD can actually give you a small boost to hunger levels, and that can cause you to eat more. That increase in appetite can worsens the acne on your face due to the excessive intake of carbs and harmful fats. These bad foods can lead to oily skin, which then leads to an increased risk of acne breakouts.

Have you ever heard the phrase “you are what you eat?” Well, it’s true.

Why does CBD increase your appetite? Well, CBD (similar to THC) contains a few chemicals that impact certain brain parts related to signaling and controlling the need; this impact irregulates their functionality. CBD and THC alters the ganglia and limbic forebrain that is responsible for your appetite behavior.

Changes in Hormonal Levels

Hormonal change is one of the most significant causes of acne. Have you ever noticed that becoming a teenager is the time when most people first get acne? Teenagers reaching puberty are more likely to develop acne due to rapidly varying hormone levels, like testosterone. This change in hormone levels causes an acne outbreak. Similarly, some women report heavy breakouts during their period. Again, this is acne caused from hormone imbalances.

Cannabis contains THC which is the plant’s popular psychoactive compound. This affects the hypothalamus portion of the brain that connects the Central Nervous System with the Endocrine system. The Endocrine system regulates the hormone levels in our body, and the impact that THC has on our body can affect the hormone levels.

When there is an alteration in the body’s hormonal levels, the sebaceous glands starts producing more sebum (remember, sebum is just facial oil) than the skin really needs. The overproduction of sebum can cause the hair follicles to get clogged when oil and dead skin cells are trapped in it. This clogging further prompts skin issues like acne, pimples, and even sebaceous cysts.

Smoking

Have you ever heard of smoker’s acne? Yes, this is an actual condition. Generally speaking, smoking tobacco negatively affects the facial skin. Research indicates that smoking tobacco can increase the time needed for the skin to heal from acne breakouts, speed up skin aging, and generally worsen the condition of acne.

The popular NHS website in the UK actually has a great article that speaks about a study in which women smokers were tested specifically to determine if smoking affected acne breakouts on their skin. The results were astonishing. “The researchers found that 18.5% of the total 1,000 women had acne. When the group was divided into smokers and non-smokers, 41.5% of the smokers had acne compared with only 9.7% of non-smokers.

That should concern you,

This claim leaves smoking CBD or marijuana in an interesting spot, however, more research is still needed to come to any conclusions about smoking CBD leading to breakouts. 

Increase in Stress

Stress can lead to an outburst of acne production as it brings many hormonal changes to the human body. The effects of smoking CBD may differ based on body types. In some people, CBD simply relaxes them. In others, it can cause an increase in energy levels.

Stress is not a direct cause of acne, but it can contribute to a bad breakout. Since CBD products are not known to cause stress – at all, you won’t have to worry about this. HOWEVER, if you are taking CBD products in order to relieve some stress, you should consider that the stress might be an underlying cause of the acne.

Treating Acne Breakouts

If possible, you need to first determine the cause of your acne. This is easier said then done. There are a few different forms of acne, and several types of acne require different kinds of treatments. Some mild acne conditions can be cured using the OTC products comprising of salicylic acid or benzoyl peroxide. A few severe breakouts need prescription medications like Accutane. Others may require antibiotics or other topical creams.

Developing a daily night skincare routine using cleansers, moisturizers, and a few natural remedies can help clear and rejuvenate your skin. Also, healthy food, plenty of water, and regular exercise can prevent such outbreaks.

New Phase Blends actually sells a specially formulated product that can clear acne fast. It’s called ‘glow’, and it utilizes a 1% salicylic acid base blended with 1,000mg of full spectrum CBD. The result is a powerful, two-staged acne fighting topical cream that can stop acne in its tracks, and rejuvenate your skin.

The salicylic acid unclogs and cleans out your pours while the full-spectrum CBD extract helps remedy the redness and swelling of the affected area. It’s even been featured in magazines such as Vogue! You can check it out by clicking here.

Conclusion | Does Smoking CBD Cause Acne?

No. There is no direct link between smoking CBD and acne breakouts. However, there are many indirect links between smoking and acne. Some of these include:

  • Changes in appetite
  • Hormone levels
  • Smoking tobacco/nicotine
  • Increased stress levels
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While smoker’s acne is more suited towards tobacco users, it begs the question: Does smoking CBD cause acne? So far, research says no – it does not. As with anything else, the more research, the better.

*The statements within this blog have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any diseases.

References

Dermato Endocrinology: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2835905/
Healthline: https://www.healthline.com/health/skin/acne
Medical News Today: https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/does-smoking-weed-cause-acne#other-side-effects-of-weed
NHS UK: https://www.nhs.uk/news/lifestyle-and-exercise/are-smokers-more-likely-to-have-acne/
International Journal of Molecular Sciences: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5877694/

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