Originally Posted on 5th May 2020
Many people understand the basics of lotions and creams and how they moisturize and nourish the skin. But what about CBD mixed with creams and balms? How does topical CBD work?
By now, you’ve probably seen CBD products in the form of oils and tinctures. True enough, most CBD products are sold as edibles to be orally ingested. However, that’s just one way of using CBD.
At New Phase Blends, we also have CBD balms and creams — or what the industry refers to as CBD topicals.
So, how does topical CBD work?
The Epidermis and Dermis (AKA Your Skin)
All humans have skin — everyone knows this. What you might not know is that the skin is actually the largest organ in the human body. It’s composed of two primary layers: the epidermis and the dermis.
- The epidermis is the top layer of your skin that you can see. It contains freckles, scars, pores, and other visible characteristics.
- The dermis is the layer of skin below your dermis. The dermis contains hair follicles, nerve and blood vessel endings, and different skin cells than the epidermis.
There is also a hypodermis, but for the sake of brevity, we will be focusing on the epidermis and dermis. Here’s an image showing the skin’s layers.
Topical Preventative vs. Reactionary Skin Treatments
Like any other organ, the skin needs proper care.
From a young age, your parents likely told you things like “put on your sunscreen” or “make sure you wear your hat.” Our skin, although incredibly resilient, is also damaged periodically as we age. Sun damage, chemical damage, and acne are just a fraction of the things that can hurt our skin permanently.
To prevent and minimize skin damage, dermatologists recommend taking two approaches to a proper skincare regimen:
- Preventative treatment
- Reactionary treatment.
An example of preventative treatment would be applying sunscreen to your skin before you go outside. Your skin would be covered in a small layer of sunscreen that protects it from UV rays — the invisible rays in sunlight that burn your skin. Your sunscreen’s SPF rating determines how long you can stay under the sun before reapplying it.
Reactionary treatments, on the other hand, are done in response to something that damaged your skin. For example, after a long day on the beach, you go home and realize you have some sunburn on your cheeks. The reactionary treatment would be to apply aloe, which soothes the pain and stimulates the repair of skin cells.
Some CBD creams are designed as a reactionary treatment to sunburn, inflammation, and pain.
But what does this have to do with how topical CBD works?
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How Does Topical CBD Get into the Skin?
Topical CBD takes advantage of the skin’s absorption capabilities.
The epidermis has pores all over it. When something goes on the skin, the skin absorbs it.
Have you ever sat in the pool or bathtub for more than half an hour? If you do this for several minutes, your skin will prune up. This is caused by the skin absorbing water, which causes it to puff up and wrinkle.
Similarly, when you apply a topical — such as a lotion or cream — your skin also absorbs some of that substance.
What Does Topical CBD Do Once Absorbed?
Combining CBD extract with a topical cream (like our topical hemp balm called “Soothe”) enables it to be absorbed through the skin, creating an entry point for CBD to enter your body.
For instance, if you have pain in your knuckles from arthritis, applying a topical CBD may provide some relief. Studies show that applying topical CBD can provide anti-inflammatory benefits that soothe joint pain.
In other words, topical CBD uses the body’s ability to absorb nutrients through the skin. However, there’s also another advantage to using CBD as a topical.
Our skin is filled with cannabinoid receptors — proteins that are part of the endocannabinoid system, which is responsible for modulating critical functions such as sleep and pain response. Research is only beginning to scratch the surface of how CBD interacts with these receptors.
For instance, early studies show that CBD and other cannabinoids create a type of anti-inflammatory action known as keratinocyte cytokine production.
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Should I Use a Topical CBD Balm, Lotion, or Cream?
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There is no right answer here. Ultimately, it boils down to preference.
- Balms usually don’t have any water (or have very little of it) and are formulated with a base of oil or beeswax. For instance, our Soothe balm is made with a blend of CBD extract combined with beeswax, avocado oil, lavender essential oil, hemp seed oil, jojoba oil, and coconut oil.
- A lotion is usually a mixture of lots of water and cream — hence why lotions often aren’t greasy.
- A cream is essentially a thicker lotion with lower concentrations of water.
Some people like a lighter option like a lotion. Others prefer a nice balm like Tiger Balm, famous for its pain-relieving properties. Other companies, like Dove, provide an assortment of skin-nourishing face and hand creams.
It’s all a matter of preference — don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.
The important thing to remember is to use a product that works best for you. Pick a product from a well-known and reputable CBD company and use it for a week or so to see how your body responds. For instance, I would recommend starting with a basic skincare regimen with Soothe (500mg) to see how your body reacts to the CBD.
Key Takeaways — How Does Topical CBD Balm Work?
- Our skin is covered with CBD receptors.
- Topical CBD products interact with these receptors, allowing the CBD to be absorbed through the skin.
- Choose the best topical CBD product that works for you and your body.
- Most people respond differently to different CBD topicals.
That about covers it. Drop a comment below if you have more questions about how topical CBD balm works. If you have any questions, please contact New Phase Blends, and we’ll do our best to help you.
At New Phase Blends, our topical CBD products are manufactured under strict protocols to ensure consistent quality. All topicals are reviewed by a third-party laboratory to verify their component ingredients and CBD content. Shop now and get FREE shipping on all items.