For a long time, the only option people had for cannabis was to smoke it. Eventually, that evolved from using rolling papers to pipes and vaporizers. However, additional changes came along, such as making rosin chips, edibles, and more. These remain excellent choices for people who enjoy weed, but one of the hottest trends today has to do with CBD topicals.
What Are CBD Topicals?
Before going over the science behind this form of marijuana use, it would help to gain a better understanding of what CBD topicals are. Just as the term implies, topicals consist of anything applied to the skin. These include lotions, creams, roll-ons, sprays, gels, and balms.
What makes these topicals unique is that they get infused with cannabis. Unlike many of the other ways to use pot, this is typically more for medicinal purposes. In particular, a lot of people rely on CBD topicals to help manage both pain and inflammation.
The Science Behind CBD Topicals
CBD topicals may help with pain and inflammation. Some people also suggest that these cannabis products can alleviate certain skin problems and help to reduce stress. Regardless of which type of topical you prefer, when applied, it will penetrate the dermal and subdermal layers of your skin. As a result, it goes to work much deeper than just the surface.
Interestingly, the federal government spearheaded attempts in the 1980s to prove that using CBD in any form caused brain damage and cognitive impairment. However, as part of the studies, experts discovered something new in the body called the endocannabinoid system.
Researchers also discovered that the receptors that work with endocannabinoids reside throughout the central and peripheral nervous systems. As most people know, the central nervous system is what produces both pain and pleasure signals. However, the central nervous system is also responsible for other factors, including mood, temperature, fertility, sleep, immune response, memory, and appetite.
CBD topicals, which interact with CB1 and CB2 receptors, help to create a desirable response. In simple terms, they assist in bringing the body back into balance. The various methods of using cannabis-infused topicals not only interact with cell receptors but also aid the body in producing more endocannabinoids. As a result, whatever’s going on internally gets addressed. The versatility of CBD topicals is one reason so many people enjoy using them.
CBD topicals are quite fascinating. Once applied, they activate the endocannabinoid system. As the cannabis-infused topical penetrates, it binds to the body’s cell receptors within muscle tissue, nerves, and skin. This is why people get much-needed relief from pain, inflammation, and some skin irritants.
Even more exciting is that many reputable sources back CBD topical research. Multiple studies show that cannabis topicals support phytocannabinoids. With several layers of skin, the topical doesn’t get into the bloodstream. Rather, it binds to the CB1 and CB2 receptors, as mentioned. It’s been proven that the federal government’s initial assessment of CBD was way off base.
According to people who regularly use CBD topicals, they work for a broad range of health-related problems. Along with pain, inflammation, psoriasis, and eczema, many people rely on them for the following.
- Headaches (specifically migraines)
- Muscle soreness
- Menstrual cramps
Where Is the Market for CBD Topicals Heading?
Already, millions of people use cannabis-infused topicals to help with pain caused by arthritis. It’s also become a popular treatment for psoriasis and eczema. Considering that topicals are yet another way to use and benefit from marijuana, it’s not surprising that demand for products keeps rising.
One respected group researched the popularity of CBD topicals. The goal was to determine how many people buy these products. Just two years ago, consumers spent more than $703 million on cannabis-infused topicals alone. However, in the next three years, this group, as well as others, project the numbers will climb to around $4.5 billion. This alone supports the claim that CBD topicals are in high demand.
Today, it’s legal to use cannabis for recreational purposes in Canada, as well as in 33 states in the U.S. However, since CBD topicals are typically for medicinal use, there’s a good chance that people can buy or make them even in places where marijuana still isn’t legal. Of course, before doing anything, you should talk to your doctor and check local regulations.
Making CBD Topicals at Home
Here’s probably the best part. If you use marijuana for medicinal purposes, but you don’t like smoking, vaping, or even eating it, you now have another solution. You can make CBD topicals in the privacy and comfort of your home.
While some people like the lotions and creams, many prefer salves or balms. Regardless, CBD topicals are safe to use and non-invasive. If you want to make cannabis-infused balm, this is just one of many recipes to try.
Ingredients, Supplies, and Instructions for Making CBD Balm
You’ll first need to gather various ingredients and supplies needed to make this CBD topical.
- 1 cup coconut oil
- 1/3 cup beeswax
- Full-spectrum CBD concentrate
- 5 to 6 drops of whatever essential oil you like the best
- Glass bowl
- Saucepan or double boiler
- Glass jar with a tight-sealing lid
Remember, you can make other CBD topicals at home, but considering the popularity of balm, you might start with this.
In a glass bowl, mix the CBD concentrate and coconut oil. Then, on low heat, melt the beeswax. As it begins to soften, add the CBD concentrate and coconut oil mixture. Continue to heat the ingredients for about 25 minutes. Then, remove the saucepan from the stove. At that time, you want to add in the essential oil you prefer. You also have the option to put in two drops of menthol.
Place and secure a piece of cheesecloth over the opening of the jar. Pour the mixture into the jar through the cheesecloth. With the jar full, add the lid and tighten it. Store the balm in a cool, dark place. An important note – you don’t want to refrigerate this or any other CBD topicals.
As far as the essential oils, they all have unique properties, and therefore, different therapeutic values. As an example, lavender promotes peace and relaxation. So, if you want a soothing cannabis-infused topical, this is a perfect choice. On the other hand, peppermint and lemon promote energy.
Other CBD Topicals
At this time, CBD topicals are all the rage. Then, considering how easy they are to make at home, it’s no wonder so many people choose to create a product formulated specifically for the outcome they want to achieve. For some, that entails using a lotion that delivers CBD oil and smells great. For others, they want a lotion that delivers CBD oil and is also moisturizing.
Keep in mind that for any CBD topicals, it’s not hard to modify a recipe. So, whether you want to make a large or small batch, you can. By making lotions, creams, gels, balms, roll-ons, and sprays at home, you have more control over the potency. Along with making topicals for yourself, they make a great gift.
Regardless of which cannabis-infused products that people like best, they always need to purchase the highest quality CBD oil available. Especially when making lotions and creams, oil is what creates a smooth and creamy consistency. That adds to the overall experience of using them.
When buying the ingredients needed to make CBD topicals, you should understand the extraction process used for the oil. There are three possibilities, which include:
- Isolate – Without any other cannabis compounds, this CBD is the purest.
- Full–Spectrum – All the cannabis compounds, including terpenes, cannabinoids, and some essential oils came from the hemp plant.
- Broad-Spectrum – In this case, the oil is a mix of isolates and full-spectrum. Although it has a decent amount of CBD, it also contains other compounds and oils.
As for the amount of CBD oil you need to use, it all depends on the desired dosage and potency. So, you might need to try a few options to find the one that yields the results that you want.
Lotions and creams are also popular. Just as with balm, this is something that people can store in a small container and take with them wherever they go. The possibilities for making these CBD topicals are almost unlimited. Although it’s easy to find tons of recipes online, here’s one that a lot of people favor.
Ingredients, Supplies, and Instructions for Making CBD Lotion
For this particular recipe, you’ll need the following:
- Essential oil (whatever the user prefers)
- Pure CBD oil
- Liquid colorant (optional)
- Glass bowl
- Mixing spatula
- Plastic bag
- Glass jar with tight-sealing lid
In a glass bowl, add both the essential and CBD oils to a quality, fragrance-free lotion. If you want to give the finished product color, add in drops of your chosen colorant.
After thoroughly mixing the ingredients, the easiest method is to place them inside a plastic bag. Then, cut the tip off and squeeze the CBD topical into a glass jar that has a seal that fits tightly. It’s that easy.
As for the type of lotion or cream, people who want to make CBD topicals at home should choose something that’s fragrance-free. They can even purchase a base lotion or cream product formulated specifically to make CBD topicals. This further enhances the experience.
Below are some helpful tips when selecting a lotion or cream to infuse with cannabis oil:
- Buy a superior product from a reputable source.
- Preferably, choose lotion or cream that contains beneficial vitamins and extracts.
- When using hot CBD or essential oil, go with thicker lotion or cream.
- Paraben-free lotion only accommodates a little bit of oil. This makes it easier to produce a more potent topical. Also, this lotion base is incredibly affordable.
- For CBD topicals that nourish and moisturize the skin, a goat-based lotion works great. Many people like the rustic nature of this lotion. One thing to remember is that goat’s milk has a distinct scent. So, you need to make a couple of test batches to find what you prefer.
An Easy and Convenient Way to Use Cannabis
Many people who make CBD topicals, whether lotions, creams, balms, or gels, place a small amount in a tin container. That way, they can carry it with them wherever they go. It’s not only easily accessible but also discreet. At the first sign of pain or inflammation, they can simply apply a small amount to the skin.
For the best results using CBD topicals, always start with superior quality concentrate. The same goes for CBD oil. Using the best ingredients will yield the best cream, lotion, gel, or balm.
This is another innovation in the world of marijuana, and it has consumers and medical professionals excited. People love the diversity of CBD topicals. They can choose from different types and blends of cannabis, as well as emulsifiers and essential oils.
To enjoy the effects of cannabis and alleviate pain, inflammation, stress, and some skin irritants, some people have suggested that CBD topicals work amazingly well. However, the key is to start with quality CBD and essential oils. You can make all kinds of topicals at home using recipes found online.
For lotions and creams, preferably, you want to select a base product formulated specifically to work with cannabis. That includes a more standard type of lotion, as well as lotion that’s paraben-free and made from goat’s milk.
CBD topicals work differently from smoking and vaping pot or consuming edibles. Rather than entering the body’s bloodstream, they interact with cell receptors. Most people experience a pleasant effect.
Since oil comes in in different concentrations, you can make CBD topicals that produce light to heavy effects. It all comes down to what you want the topical to do. If you live with pain caused by arthritis, you probably want a lotion or cream that’s stronger. However, if you struggle with light to moderate stress, then a less potent topical would likely suffice.
For CBD topicals, you want to focus on four specific factors. Those include potency, quality, ingredients, and source. Most importantly, make sure you purchase CBD oil in the potency you want and need. Also, buy all your cannabis products from a reputable source. Especially as part of a tightly regulated industry, you want to do business with a company you can trust.
Then, as mentioned, only use superior quality CBD and essential oils. The better quality you have, the better the topical. One way to do this is to check the hemp from which CBD gets extracted. If not possible, ask questions. In particular, you want oil that underwent third-party testing and is free of any pesticides and molds.