Depending on your particular weed needs, you may not necessarily be in search of something that will get you sky high, which is where products like CBD cream come into play.
Indulging in some fabulous flower and feeling the effects of your favourite THC-heavy reefer can make for an awesome experience.
However, there is a time, place and occasion for everything.
With its bounty of beneficial effects, CBD has risen to be a hot commodity on the cannabis market. This compound contains several healing properties that show significant potential to help with a wide range of conditions from inflammation to pain to more severe conditions, such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s Disease.
That said, topical CBD creams have also seen a significant increase in popularity by medical marijuana patients seeking effective, long-lasting relief.
So, what is CBD cream, what’s in it and what does it do? Patience, young padawan. We will answer all these questions and more today!
What is CBD?
Before delving into the details surrounding CBD cream, in particular, let’s take a step back and outline precisely what its key component is – CBD.
CBD, an abbreviation for its longer-form scientific name cannabidiol, is a cannabinoid found in hemp and cannabis plants. More than 100 different types of cannabinoids are currently known thus far, with CBD and THC (aka tetrahydrocannabinol) being two of the most familiar to consumers.
Since it’s found to be naturally-occurring within these plants, CBD has a dual-title as a phytocannabinoid, as well.
Until relatively recently, CBD’s copious healing capabilities were often overshadowed by its overachieving sibling cannabinoid, THC.
However, there are some crucial differences between the two that are worth considering.
Arguably the most important distinction between THC and CBD is that CBD does not produce any psychoactive effects, unlike its counterpart.
Instead, it hosts several healing properties that show significant scientific potential to help treat multiple symptoms and health conditions.
For more information regarding CBD and THC’s differences, check out our full explainer article here.
So, since CBD will not produce the typical ‘stoner high’ that THC will, producers can use it in a wide range of products that allow users to remain entirely functional without fear of becoming impaired.
One example of these products is CBD cream.
What is CBD Cream?
CBD cream falls under the broader category of CBD topicals.
Topical CBD products include any cream, lotion, balm or salve that’s been infused with the cannabinoid CBD or CBD oil and can be applied directly to the skin.
Research into CBD remains in its early days. That said, the growing catalogue of scientific evidence that we do have shows incredibly promising results for a wide range of applications.
As we outlined above, CBD can help with conditions such as inflammation and pain. For example, one 2016 study showed CBD cream and topical applications to help manage pain and inflammation associated with arthritis in rats.
However, that’s not the limit of its applications. CBD creams have also been shown to help with various skin conditions, including acne, eczema and psoriasis, thanks to their anti-inflammatory properties.
In fact, the American Academy of Dermatology even suggested CBD as a course of treatment for these conditions in their annual meeting in 2018.
Because CBD is non-intoxicating, CBD topicals such as CBD cream are frequently selected by recreational users and medical patients alike who want to reap the therapeutic benefits of CBD without the cerebral or psychoactive effects associated with THC.
CBD topicals typically come in three specific categories: full-spectrum, broad-spectrum, or CBD isolate.
Full-spectrum CBD creams preserve all the cannabinoids and terpenes in the final product, including trace amounts of THC. Broad-spectrum CBD products and CBD creams contain most of the cannabinoids found in the cannabis plant but not THC.
Finally, CBD isolate is precisely what its name implies. It contains CBD solely with no traces of other cannabinoids or terpenes.
How do Topical CBD Products Work?
CBD cream, CBD oil, CBD lotion and other CBD topicals provide relief by binding to a network of endocannabinoid receptors called CB2 receptors. These CB2 receptors can be found throughout our bodies as an element of the greater endocannabinoid system.
For a full breakdown of your body’s endocannabinoid system and how cannabis affects it, check out our thorough guide.
These CB2 receptors are activated either by the body’s naturally-occurring cannabinoids, also known as endocannabinoids, or when cannabis compounds (aka phytocannabinoids) are introduced.
Most cannabis topicals, both THC and topical CBD products, only penetrate to the system of CB2 receptors present in your skin. In other words, they do not make their way to or breach the bloodstream.
Even if a topical does contain some THC, it likely won’t be enough to induce the intense effects that it would if you were to smoke, eat or vape it.
In this way, the primary objective for users utilizing topical CBD is to reap the benefits of CBD for localized or targeted use. In other words, they use it to pinpoint specific inflammation, pain, muscle tension or soreness.
However, as outlined above, topical CBD uses are also starting to broaden to other applications, such as psoriasis, eczema, acne and more.
Elements to Consider in Topical CBD Products
Now that we’ve established a solid baseline for what CBD cream is, what’s in it and how it works, we should highlight another important element – customization.
As with all other cannabis and cannabis-infused products, each user will have their own specific weed needs. As such, there is no such thing as a one-size-fits-all product.
Below, we’ll outline some important basics to know and keep in mind when shopping for a CBD topical.
Strength is perhaps the most important characteristic of a CBD topical. CBD does not pass through the skin easily, so it’s important to have a relatively potent product to produce the best results.
When it comes to CBD topical products, the average potency per application typically ranges between 3 and 8 mg of CBD per recommended application. More potent products will contain a minimum of 8 mg of CBD per application.
This is where the terms full-spectrum, broad-spectrum and isolate come back into play.
While isolates are the best choice for consumers looking for not even trace amounts of THC, there is a catch in terms of these CBD products’ effectiveness. Since the specific extraction method for CBD isolate removes all other cannabinoids and terpenes, it will likely also reduce the overall therapeutic benefits of CBD.
In this way, you may be better off opting for a broad-spectrum CBD product that contains most cannabinoids present in the cannabis plant without THC.
Finally, full-spectrum CBD items will contain all of the cannabinoids and terpenes in the final product, including trace amounts of THC. However, it’s crucial to note that any full-spectrum CBD cream will still only contain 0.3% THC or less, so it’s still an incredibly low amount.
Always opt for organic, all-natural ingredients whenever possible or whenever they’re available.
Like with other similar products, it’s always best to know what you’re applying to your skin. It’s also the easiest way to avoid adverse or allergic reactions if there’s an ingredient that you’re sensitive to.
In this way, you can reap all CBD benefits without having to worry about potential contaminants or pesticides.
This feature is especially vital for a CBD cream that you put on your face. In this case, look out for ingredients that could irritate your skin, especially if you have sensitive skin.
Best CBD Creams of 2021
Relief Cooling Muscle Balm – SunnySide Botanicals
Sunnyside Botanicals Relief Cooling Muscle Balm is a cannabis topical that helps relieve pain, muscle aches, chest congestion and more swiftly and efficiently.
Its cooling sensation will soothe and delight the senses while providing fast-acting relief.
Each 30ml stick contains 400 mg of Sunnyside Botanicals organic, pure CBD isolate, cooling menthol, and their in-house infused Arnica-oil to create an all-encompassing, all-natural product to have you feeling your best.
Day & Night CBD Skin Cream – HempRéal
HempRéal’s Day & Night Skin Cream is a revitalizing cream that revitalizes and restores your skin’s natural moisture and elasticity, combatting noticeable signs of ageing.
Its smooth, velvety texture promotes skin softness, suppleness and tonicity.
For optimal effects, we recommend using this product every day in the morning and at night. Each 200ml body contains 600mg of CBD.
Animalitos CBD Hot Spot Healing Salve – Mota
People aren’t the only ones who can benefit from the healing properties of CBD. It’s animal-friendly, too!
Animalitos CBD Hot Spot Healing Salve by Mota helps to cool your pets’ irritated skin and provide quick, fast-acting relief.
All you need to do is apply a small amount of the healing salve on areas your pet has been scratching or chewing. Voila! A perfectly happy, healthy pet!
CBD Infused Shea Butter – Herb Angels
Herb Angels is right! This CBD-Infused Shea Butter is surely a gift from the ganja gods!
CBD-Infused Shea Butter by Herb Angels is an organic, all-natural topical lotion that provides effective, fast-acting relief for all forms of inflammatory and neuropathic pain.
Its unique combination of CBD mixed with vitamins and fatty acids in shea butter helps this cannabis topical moisturize and heal your skin.
Yoni Soothe Balm – Mota
PMS is a total drag. There is no way around it. But with products like the Yoni Soothe Balm by Mota, it doesn’t have to be completely miserable.
This cannabis topical is made to be incredibly effective by carefully considering the specific blend of healing herbs it contains. The rub contains a beeswax base and a blend of skin-nourishing oils to relieve uterine cramping and alleviate sore joints and back pain.
It also includes white willow bark, the active ingredient in aspirin, ginger, which helps promote blood flow and circulation to the abdominal area. Finally, it has St. John’s Wort, an herb that helps uplift mood and help support the emotional rollercoaster that is PMS.
Trust us when we say that this balm will quickly become your new best friend!
CBD Cream – All-Natural, Soothing Relief
The market demand for CBD has grown exponentially in recent years.
With further evidence being compiled to support its efficacy as a potential all-natural treatment method for various conditions, it’s no wonder that topical CBD products, such as CBD cream, have taken off.
Treating symptoms such as pain, inflammation and more, CBD serves as an excellent method for supplying soothing localized relief without fear of impairment or intoxication.
Unlike its cannabinoid counterpart, THC, CBD does not produce any psychoactive effects!
So, you can rest assured that you will be fully functional throughout the day.
If you’re looking for an organic treatment method to provide fast-acting relief, CBD cream could be just what you need and quickly become your new favourite go-to item.
Not sure where to start? Check out the Herb Approach website and comb through our wide selection of CBD topicals to set you on the right track!
As with any other topical or cannabinoid-infused product, it may take some trial and error and dosage adjustment to find what works best for you.