Do Cannabis-Infused Beauty Products Actually Work? Everything You Need to Know
They claim to fight muscle aches, reduce inflammation, and ease dry skin (but no, they won't get you high).
Chances are, you've probably started to notice cannabidiol hemp oil, or CBD hemp oil, popping up as an ingredient in beauty products such as body lotion and facial oil. While it's definitely the buzzy beauty ingredient of the moment, a fad this is not: CBD-infused beauty products have been growing in popularity, with entire brands now dedicated to the healing properties CBD hemp oil has when used topically. But there are still a lot of misconceptions about CBD-infused beauty products, so we went to the experts to get some answers.
First, the big question you're wondering: CBD is non-psychoactive, meaning you're not going to get high from using any of these products. CBD hemp oil is sourced from hemp with lower levels of THC than marijuana, (which is responsible for altered mental state) and high levels of CBD. It's also a rich source of fatty acids and other nutrients that benefit your skin, says Francesca Fusco, MD, a dermatologist based in New York City. "Studies have shown it can improve reduced barrier function, improve hydration, minimize moisture loss, and decrease inflammation," she explains.
Skincare brands are catching on to the benefits. If you're looking for something to address dryness, the CBD for Life Pure CBD Hand and Body Massage Lotion ($22; cbdlife.us) is an all-star. On your face, try Mad Hippie Antioxidant Facial Oil ($25; amazon.com), which contains hemp seed extract for a healthy glow along with other skin-loving ingredients like argan oil and vitamin E. If you're feeling sore after a workout or have muscle aches, try Lord Jones Pure CBD Pain & Wellness Formula Body Lotion ($50; lordjonesbrand.com).
Many of these products are geared towards CBD oil's anti-inflammatory benefits because "the primary receptor for CBD (CB2) is found on immune cells," which is where inflammation takes place, notes Adam Friedman, MD, a dermatologist in Washington D.C. This is major, because many skin conditions are connected to inflammation, which is why there are so many conversations about the power of CBD in the beauty industry right now.
Research on CBD oil and its benefits is ongoing, but Dr. Friedman points out that the ingredient's ability to regulate cell growth, reduce inflammation, and stimulate important fats in the skin and sebaceous glands could help inform treatments for other skin issues, such as dry skin, psoriasis, and eczema.
Beyond beauty products that you can use at home, spas are starting to include CBD oil in their treatments. The Remède Spa at The St. Regis San Francisco, for example, just released a limited-edition treatment for Valentine's Day called the Love & Haight hot oil massage, which substitutes CBD hemp oil for essential oils typically used. Multiple spas in Denver offer similar massage treatments with the ingredient.
According to Dr. Friedman, cannabis beauty products are certainly worth a try. He reiterates that the benefits are "strongly supported by several pilot studies," not to mention that many users swear by them.