You’re probably already aware that CBD skincare has become the latest trend. CBD is now used in many beauty products, so you might be wondering what role it plays or why it’s so effective in this area.
What is CBD?
CBD, the more popular name for cannabidiol, is one of the many compounds in the cannabis plant. CBD can be obtained from either of the two cannabis plants—hemp or marijuana. Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is predominant in marijuana and is responsible for its psychoactive effects. Unlike THC, CBD cannot get you high. CBD has become popular due to the discovery of its numerous health benefits.
Why CBD is effective in skincare
You’ll come across lots of claims about what CBD can do for your skin. According to Dr Cheryl Bugailiskis, a cannabis expert at HelloMD, “the skin is the largest organ and our body’s first line of defense against unwanted organisms. As such, this protective layer has the highest amount and concentration of what are called cannabinoid receptors. Cannabinoid receptors are located throughout the body as a part of our endocannabinoid system — a checks-and-balance matrix, which regulates a number of critical bodily functions and responses such as stress, pain, appetite, inflammation, sleep, immunity and even processes like how much or how little oil our skin produces.” Dr. Cheryl explains that CBD has the same type of receptors as our skin, which is why our skin responds so well to it. CBD stimulates the cannabinoid receptors in our skin. This action helps regulate:
- lipid production (could lead to acne)
- histamine production
- skin cell proliferation (which causes psoriasis)
In addition to having anti-inflammatory properties, CBD is a powerful antioxidant. Research has shown that CBD might be effective in helping acne, skin aging, redness, and irritation. Though more studies are needed, research on using CBD as part of a healthy skincare regimen has been promising.
CBD and psoriasis
Psoriasis causes an accelerated growth and division of skin cells. This results in the appearance of eczema on your skin. While psoriasis has no cure yet, therapies exist to alleviate symptoms. CBD has become popular as a natural remedy for psoriasis, with various studies indicating its effectiveness in slowing down skin cell division. Its anti-inflammatory properties also help provide relief for psoriasis patients.
CBD and acne
Acne results from excess secretion of sebum and the Propionibacterium acnes bacteria. While sebum is essential for your skin’s protection, an excess of it can lead to acne. CBD helps with acne because:
- CBD slows down sebum formation: The CBD molecule has been found to slow down sebum formation in sebaceous glands. This is much desired in skincare for acne since sebum formation is the primary cause of acne.
- CBD is highly antibacterial and anti-inflammatory: Redness caused by acne results from inflammation, which CBD ameliorates very successfully.
CBD and atopic dermatitis
Dermatitis, an inflammatory skin disease, mostly affects children below age six. Unfortunately, most corticosteroid creams that effectively relieve the symptoms of dermatitis usually have side effects. CBD is effective against dermatitis due to its anti-inflammatory properties. When used topically, CBD binds quickly to the skin’s endocannabinoid receptors, targeting the skin problem. It also helps in relieving the itching and redness associated with atopic dermatitis.
CBD and seborrheic dermatitis
Seborrheic dermatitis mostly affects the face and scalp in the form of red, scaly skin. CBD is effective against this disease because:
- CBD slows down sebum secretion: Excessive sebum secretion from sebaceous glands is the most common cause of seborrheic dermatitis. Since CBD helps reduce sebum secretion, it helps with seborrheic dermatitis.
- CBD slows down skin cell proliferation: The Malassezia fungus causes an increased reproduction of skin cells, which can lead to seborrheic dermatitis. Studies have shown that CBD slows down the reproduction of sebocytes, which make up sebaceous glands. This prevents the onset of seborrheic dermatitis.
Choose only quality CBD products for your skin
Although countless studies purport the positives of using CBD as part of a healthy skincare regimen, more research is needed. You should be careful when choosing which products to try. Some manufacturers falsely label “CBD” on products. Sometimes products contain less CBD than advertised, or even none at all. If you’re using products with CBD, make sure they are from trusted manufacturers. Look for products with clear labelling, with at least 95% CBD purity. If you’re already under the care of a dermatologist, you may want to consult them before adding CBD products to your current (prescribed) skincare regimen.