Cannabidiol, or CBD, is taking over the skincare aisle. Sales in the category hit $633.6 million in 2018 and are expected to rise 24.8 percent by 2026. Scientists are still figuring out what CBD can and can’t do, how it does what it does, and what dosage gets results. However, there are reasons to believe the hemp derivative could live up to its big beauty promises. While research is scarce, a few studies indicate it can calm and soothe irritated skin, it might help combat acne, and it may even be an anti-ager. Here are the five findings that beauty brands are bottling. And our recommendation? Try Miraflora Natural’s CBD Body Butter, made with full-spectrum hemp flower extract, arnica flower, virgin shea butter, extra virgin coconut oil, and aromatic essential oils.
1) It has shown a positive impact on inflammatory skin responses
Notice that the word “soothing” shows up on much of the packaging out there? A 2019 study looking into the therapeutic impact of CBD-enriched ointment in inflammatory skin diseases and cutaneous scars found that topical treatment helped improve hydration and elasticity and relieved itch in patients with conditions like psoriasis and eczema, all without causing irritation or allergic reactions. No wonder it’s often touted for tricky and sensitive skin.
2) It shows potential for acne care
Many are looking to the additive to help fight acne, thanks to its ability to help regulate the production of sebum, or your body’s natural oils. By keeping sebum in check, CBD may prevent excess oil from hanging around and collecting debris, leading to clogged pores. Also, a 2014 study published in the Journal of Clinical Investigation found CBD to be a viable solution for pimples thanks to its ability to normalize the metabolic processes triggered by “pro-acne agents” and prevent the elevation of proinflammatory cytokine levels in the cells. Acne-prone people everywhere are keeping their fingers crossed as more research comes in.
3) It has antioxidant properties
There have been several studies that show CBD is an antioxidant that interrupts free radical chain reactions (check out this 2020 research review for proof). For those who need a refresher, free radicals are those nasty triggers that bring on the oxidation process that leads to signs of aging like fine lines, wrinkles, and a loss of collagen. One environmental source of free radicals is UV rays, which possibly explains why a new study in the Journal of Pharmaceutical and Biomedical Analysis found that CBD was protective against “UV-induced metabolic changes in epidermal keratinocytes [the primary skin cells in the epidermis].”
As an anti-ager, we’re not quite sure where it falls in the list of efficiency in comparison to, say, vitamin C. But there has been a very exciting recent development that’s getting a lot of buzz: A new molecule derived from CBD by scientists at the University of Cordoba and the University of Dundee was shown to have very significant antioxidant properties in the top layer of the skin. So the future is looking good.
4) It may be an antibiotic
Move over Neosporin? Maybe. Research presented at the 2019 meeting of the American Society for Microbiology suggested that CBD kills a range of bacteria in the skin (including Staphyloccocus aureus and Streptococcus pneumoniae) without the bacteria developing a resistance to it over time. Dr Mark Blaskovich, who led the work done at The University of Queensland’s Institute for Molecular Bioscience’s Centre for Superbug Solutions in collaboration with Botanix Pharmaceuticals Ltd, called it a “promising new antibiotic worth further investigation.” He also said, “The combination of inherent antimicrobial activity and potential to reduce damage caused by the inflammatory response to infections is particularly attractive.”
5) It’s nourishing
CBD is often touted as a great addition to moisture creams thanks to its wealth of omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids, nutrients that have been shown to be crucial to healthy skin function. Research suggests the duo helps restore the skin’s protective barrier, which in turn keeps hydration in. Add that to its anti-inflammatory action, and it makes sense that some psoriasis patients have reported seeing a benefit to using CBD-rich ointments.