Skin deep; your ultimate guide to topical CBD


CBD topicals are applied directly to the skin, as the name suggests. They are not inhaled like vapes, ingested like edibles, or administered sublingually under the tongue like tinctures. As a result, topicals are a great option for first-time CBD users who do not intend to get CBD directly into their bodies. Also, skincare and beauty brands, together with their customers, are constantly on the lookout for new products that deliver results, from deep hydration to anti-aging creams or getting rid of acne. In recent years, there has been an increase in the use of our favorite plant-based ingredient (CBD), in the beauty world.

CBD has permeated its way in different substances; from face creams to soaps, sheet masks to shampoos. As a result, no one could have foreseen the rapid adoption of CBD into our health and wellness routines, which is why scientific experts are actively trying to stay up with the curiosity and clarify many of the anecdotal claims made in favor of CBD. In this guide, we take a close look at CBD and whether it can truly benefit the skin.

What is CBD?

Cannabinoid (CBD) is a chemical compound extracted from the cannabis plant. It is a cannabidiol, along with its well-known sibling tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), which has intoxicating characteristics. However, CBD doesn’t contain enough THC to have similar effects, so one won’t get cravings from using a CBD product. Carrier oils such as jojoba oil or hemp seed oil are blended with CBD to make CBD oil, which can be used alone or to make various skincare products.

CBD works with the body's endocannabinoid system (ECS) to help restore balance in the body. Research has only begun to discover potential benefits of CBD oil, showing its beneficial properties that might apply to the skin. Additionally, CBD has antioxidant effects that help with the negative effects of free radicals. Therefore, how might CBD oil help an individual’s beauty routine?

CBD Helps Regulate Oil Production and Manage Acne.

According to a study by Kircik, (2019)., CBD has anti-inflammatory properties preventing pro acne agents such as inflammatory proteins from being activated. Also, the inflammatory properties can help to reduce the redness, pain, and swelling associated with inflammatory acne. Moreover, studies show that CBD seems to balance the hormones involved in oil production known as sebum, making it helpful for those prone to acne or a greasier complexion.

CBD Reduces the Appearance of Fine Lines and Wrinkles.

CBD has powerful antioxidant properties that help prevent the body from harmful free radical damage. This helps reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles in the skin. Also, CBD seems to counter oxidative stress and its damaging effects. One study by Williams, & Nutbrown, (2021)., states that CBD's moisturizing effects help combat dehydration and redness, thereby reducing visible signs of aging like wrinkles.

CBD Is a Potential Topical Antibacterial Agent

Research by McIver, et al., (2020)., suggests that CBD displays potential antibacterial activity and can destroy bacterial infections in the skin. Also, the anti-inflammatory properties of CBD make it potentially great for those with sensitive skin. Additionally, CBD is thought to be effective at normalizing and calming the effects of reactivity, dullness, and redness that most people struggle against daily.

CBD Might Help With Other Skin Conditions

According to the previous research, CBD could also help manage irritation and inflammation caused by eczema and chronic skin conditions like dermatitis and psoriasis. Moreover, CBD could also calm rosacea flare-ups such as redness and visible blood vessels. What's more, researchers have discovered that CBD topicals might significantly improve scar tissue. It also reveals that CBD might help with itchiness and dry skin .Lastly, CBD can help ease aching joints and muscles after a workout since cannabinoids have muscle-relaxing properties. So how do you choose a CBD skincare product that might work?

Product Ingredients

Do the ingredients comprise the words cannabidiol or phytocannabinoids? These are the key ingredients in any product that contains actual CBD. Do not settle for hemp oil which is derived solely from the plant's seeds, rather than the nutrient-dense leaves, stem, and flower. Also, an abundance of cannabinoids is a sign of a high-quality CBD skincare product meaning the firm behind it has taken steps to guarantee that they are preserved during extraction and processing.

Is the Product Full Spectrum CBD?

According to studies, full-spectrum CBD products are more effective than CBD isolates. It's because full-spectrum CBD means nutrients and essential vitamins remain intact in the extraction process. If the CBD is full-spectrum, it will have acronyms like CBDA, CBN, CBG, and CBC on the label. If not, it means these cannabinoids and chemicals will have been lost during extraction.

Third-Party Testing

Third-party testing answers whether the products have been tested on the purity and potency of the CBD. A skincare company or any company that is worthy of receiving money will want to share their processes with their clients. If a company hides details about any production stage, especially in the CBD world, where many consumers aren't even sure what they are looking for, be sure that it's not an oversight.

Stable Packaging

Has the company invested in stable packaging? Never buy bottling products that expose plant ingredients to air and light, for this will minimize their potency. Also, make sure that the product doesn’t contain any filler ingredients that might harm your skin. Be keen that the products are honest and upfront concerning the ingredients' suitability and value and are committed to safety testing.

Brand Reputation and Pricing

Investigate whether the brand is transparent and supportive. Check out for third-party testing, online customer reviews, high-quality customer service, etc. Also, cheaper products don't necessarily have the same quality as expensive products. Therefore, avoid going for the cheaper ones by all means.


Read the recommendations on the product carefully, as lower CBD levels don't necessarily mean less effectiveness. Also, higher CBD levels don't mean more effectiveness. Additionally, it depends on the CBD formulation in conjunction with other active ingredients in the product. However, if in doubt, begin low and slow and test a small amount of the product to see the skin reaction.


CBD may have various skin benefits, including anti-inflammatory properties and deep moisturizing effects. Also, other active components such as aloe Vera and hyaluronic acid are included to help these products target your skin in different ways. Additionally, it's critical to remember that research is fairly limited but promising as CBD is already considered safe to use topically. Finally, there's no such thing as a universal size, so investigate what works for you.


Kircik, L. H. (2019). What’s New In The Management Of Acne Vulgaris. Cutis, 104(1), 48-52. Mciver, V. C., Tsang, A. S., Symonds, N. E., Perkins,

N. R., Uquillas, E., Dart, C. M., ... & Dart, A. J. (2020). Effects Of
Topical Treatment Of Cannabidiol Extract In A Unique Manuka Factor 5 Manuka
Honey Carrier On Second Intention Wound Healing On Equine Distal Limb Wounds: A
Preliminary Study. Australian Veterinary Journal, 98(6), 250-255.

Williams, C., & Nutbrown, D. L. (2021). A
Review Of Research Into The Health Benefits Of Cannabidiol (CBD). The
Neighborhood Academy: Pittsburgh, PA, USA.

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