Since the legalization of recreational marijuana in January. Californians have been flocking to dispensaries, delivery services and cannabusinesses. But not everyone is interested in lighting up.

According to experts, there’s more to weed than getting high. THC, the psychoactive chemical in marijuana, and CBD, or cannabinoids the “chill” chemical, might be the ideal ingredients to treat a variety of skin conditions. A recent study, in the Journal of American Academy of Dermatology, suggests that CBD may be help treat itch, inflammation and skin cancer.

In a study using rodents, researchers found that cannabinoid compounds helped reduce the growth and spread of malignant melanoma. Other potential uses include treatment for eczema, psoriasis and contact dermatitis (a common skin rash).  Despite success in clinical trials, the authors caution that more research is needed. But, in an area of study as new as cannabis, that’s only to be expected. While some medical professionals already prescribe and recommend cannabis-products for skin-related issues, it may be a few years before the practice goes mainstream.

In addition to treating skin conditions, cannabis-based skincare products may help reduce daily skin concerns, such as aging and acne. The skin is the largest organ and one of the clearest indicators of overall health. CBD may be the key to better skin.

CBD oil can be derived from marijuana or hemp – the former is preferred for consumption and pain relief while the latter is ideal for skin care. Hemp oil is light, non comedogenic (it doesn’t clog pores), full of omega-3 and 6 fatty acids and anti inflammatory. CBD also an antioxidant which means it can help fight free radicals, such as pollution damage, and help prevent fine lines and wrinkles.

Fatty acids help skin retain moisture, which can reduce fine lines and increase skin’s elasticity.  CBD’s anti inflammatory properties can help fight acne and the pain and redness associated with rashes and allergic reactions.

A study in the Journal of Clinical Investigation found that CBD can help regulate oil production, a.k.a, the culprit of acne. Most acne is caused by excess oil production and dirt trapped in pores. CBD also helps fight inflammation and redness, which go hand-in-hand with acne flares. These skin-related perks are in addition to the well-documented pain relief and therapeutic benefits of CBD.

But is this boom in cannabis-based skincare just a fad? Is CBD just the ingredient of the moment? Since the cannabis industry is still so new, it’s can be hard to tell if cannabis-laced beauty products are the real deal or is CBD is just a trendy add-on.

One way to make sure you get all the potential health benefits from CBD compounds is to read the label. Look for CBD derived from hemp (for skin care products, you want CBD derived from marijuana for consumption) and pay attention to other active and inactive ingredients in any products you use on your skin. Each person’s skin reacts differently, so no matter how safe the ingredient is, it’s a good idea to do a patch test before slathering on the CBD oil.


Posted by:Veronica An

Veronica enjoys good food, good company, and good music. She pens poems, short stories, op-ed articles, and non-fiction pieces. Her favorite place to write is under the California sunshine.

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