Cannabis has quickly become one of the most buzzed-about beauty ingredients, much thanks to CBD.
CBD — short for cannabidiol, the non-psychoactive compound in cannabis revered for a number of health benefits — is showing up in a number of categories from cocktails and sparkling water to chocolate, infused dinners, and even dog treats. But it has also crossed over into the beauty realm, especially when it comes to natural skin care and beauty products. Its appeal to the current interest in all-natural beauty and wellness speaks to its rise into the mainstream — but a few questions still remain: what is CBD? Does it get you high? How is it different from hemp? And what does it do for your skin?
CBD vs. THC
The verbiage surrounding the recent trend can be confusing. The skincare aisle is lined with products toting cannabis-derived ingredients from hemp seed oil to full spectrum CBD to cannabis sativa oil. Each ingredient comes with its own unique skincare benefits, but there are distinctions that set them apart.
CBD oil is a non-psychoactive component of the cannabis plant. Its cousin tetrahydrocannabinol, aka THC, is the stuff in marijuana that gets you high. But marijuana and THC specifically have notable therapeutic benefits – it’s used to alleviate chronic pain, insomnia, trauma, and anxiety. It usually comes with the side-effect of couchlock, the munchies, impaired productivity, and sometimes paranoia, depending on the strain.
While CBD won’t get you high, it can help to treat some of the same issues THC tackles. It also comes with other benefits when included in skincare. It has anti-inflammatory, anti-aging, and antioxidant properties, according to British Vogue. It’s extracted from the leaves, flowers, and stalks of the cannabis plant. When CBD oil is labeled “full spectrum” or “broad spectrum,” it means that the oil contains other naturally-occurring components of the cannabis plant, such as cannabinoids, essential oils, terpenes, and even THC. But don’t worry about it making you high. Hemp contains no more than 0.3 percent THC — and some oils might not have any at all.
What About Hemp Oil?
Hemp oil, on the other hand, is extracted through an entirely different process. It’s cold-pressed from hemp seeds and acts as a carrier oil — much like grapeseed — for other ingredients. It’s sometimes referred to has cannabis sativa seed oil on packaging. On its own, it’s rich in antioxidants and omega-3 and -6 fatty acids and has been stocked on health food store shelves for years as a dietary supplement much like flax oil. As a skincare ingredient, hemp oil is a powerful moisturizer that doesn’t clog pores or leave skin feeling oily.
The past few years have seen to an influx of countless lotions, serums, and creams that make use of the potent plant. Here are 9 CBD and cannabis products to try.
The Ultimate Guide to Vegan CBD and Cannabis Skincare
1. High Beauty
Cruelty-free and vegan brand High Beauty leverages the power of cannabis sativa — aka hemp — to hydrate, replenish, and protect the skin. High is much more than cannabis sativa seed oil. High is expertly formulated to deliver cannabis sativa seed oil in combination with certified organic plant oils, high-potency antioxidants, and pure plant essential oils for healthy beautiful skin. It doesn’t contain CBD or THC, but cannabis sativa seed oil from Canadian hemp farms. Its cannabis sativa-rich products take on a wide range of skin concerns ranging from inflammation to delicate or damaged skin, dryness, fine lines and wrinkles, and free-radical damage.
Its High Expectations cannabis facial oil contains 32 percent cannabis sativa seed oil. The concentrated formula is made for intensive repair and replenishment. It contains other potent plant ingredients like argan, borage, cranberry, and rose hip oil.
The High Five Cannabis Facial Moisturizer is formulated with 20 percent cannabis sativa oil plus other nourishing ingredients like antioxidants, bioflavonoids, vitamins, and essential fatty acids like vitamin E, vitamin A, ubiquinone aka CoQ10, pomegranate, and more. It’s made to calm, balance, protect, hydrate and replenish.
High is committed to using natural, organic ingredients and never includes additives like parabens, harsh preservatives, petrochemicals, pesticides, BPA & phthalates, sulfates, propylene and butylene glycols, silicones, artificial fragrances, or synthetic colors and dyes. The company is also dedicated to environmental sustainability by employing green manufacturing practices and powering its California facility with 100,000 watts of solar energy.
2. Kush Queen
Kush Queen is a vegan, cruelty-free leader in the CBD skincare space that aims to defy conventional beauty standards through its newest range, DEFYNT Skincare. The first product in the new line, The Anti-Serum, is a powerful formula made to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles, shrink pores, and brighten skin after just a few days.
The Anti-Serum is specially formulated with 100mg of Nano CBD, made through Kush Queen’s proprietary Amplifi™ Nanotechnology. The process transforms CBD oil into water-soluble molecules that are 2,000 times smaller than the average pore size, which allows the ingredient to penetrate deep below the surface of the skin. Nano CBD is 20 times more powerful than regular CBD oil, so users get the most of its anti-inflammatory, anti-aging, anti-acne, and antioxidant properties that help the skin look youthful and bright.
The Anti-Serum is suitable for all ages, genders, and skin-types and made from the highest-quality raw materials. Along with Nano CBD, it includes hydrating hyaluronic acid, alpha-lipoic acid (ALA), antioxidant rich ubiquinone aka CoQ10, vitamin C, and organic plant-based extracts. It’s free from parabens and phthalates and has a silky-smooth texture that sits will under sunscreen, foundation, and heavier moisturizers.
3. The CBD Skincare Co.
Crème de la Terre is a powerful anti-aging salve made by New Jersey-based brand, The CBD Skincare Co. The vegan and cruelty-free cream was developed with botanical ingredients such as full-spectrum CBD, alpha lipoic acid (ALA), vitamin K, and mushroom extract. Suitable for all skin types, it’s formulated to heal, lift, and firm skin.
Cruelty-free brand FARMACY Beauty works with organic farmers and scientists to harness the power of all-natural ingredients without mineral oils, parabens, and phthalates. Its Better Daze Ahead cushion cream marries CBD oil sourced from sustainably-farmed Colorado hemp with moisture-rich hemp and adaptogens like reishi mushroom, purple ginseng, and holy basil. The full-spectrum CBD helps soothe inflammation and fine lines while the adaptogens balance the skin and protect it from environmental stress. This restorative vegan moisturizer has a silky-smooth texture that won’t leave skin feeling greasy.
5. Saint Jane
Saint Jane’s Luxury Beauty Serum is formulated with 500mg of full spectrum CBD extracted from sustainably-grown hemp and 20 percent botanicals to calm, soothe, and brighten the skin. It has a silky texture containing active ingredients like sea buckthron, calendula, and rosehip that work with CBD to boost radiance and antioxidant-rich pomegranate and helichrysum. The fast-absorbing formula is ideal for layering skincare.
6. Herbivore Botanicals
Woman-owned and founded brand Herbivore Botanicals’ first CBD product, Emerald Deep Moisture Glow Oil, is a light green facial oil is made with 100mg organic full spectrum CBD grown in Colorado. A combination of CBD and hemp seed oil soothes, moisturizes, and diminishes fine lines while adaptogens like ashwaganda help the skin recover from environmental stressors. It also contains ultra-hydrating skincare heroes like squalane, meadowfoam seed oil, and borage seed oil. Herbivore Botanicals is cruelty-free, vegan, and made without synthetic ingredients, parabens, sodium lauryl sulfate, phthalates, chemicals, fillers, mineral oils, and petroleum.
The founder of UK-based brand Ohana, Jasmin, found CBD after being diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. According to the brand, CBD oil helped alleviate the condition’s chronic pain, which led her to start making her own balms and salves. The Saucha Face Oil — named after the Sanskrit words for purity, cleanliness, and clearness — is made to moisturize, even out blemished skin texture, and help protect against pollution. CBD works in tandem with antioxidant-rich rosehip and sea buckthorn oils, which improve skin tone and pigmentation.
8. Ellis Brooklyn
Luxury natural fragrance brand Ellis Brooklyn created its Marvelous Massage & Body Oil to soothe skin and help you relax. Organic, full-spectrum CBD restores and protects while French maritime pine bark extract is known for treating inflammation. Sweet almond oil gives this massage oil an extra boost of hydrating ingredients while grapefruit and rosemary essential oils help create a divine sensory experience.
9. Ildi Pekar
Luxury European beauty brand Ildi Pekar created its CBD-infused Tissue Repair Serum to tackle inflammation and damaged skin. Made with 250mg full spectrum CBD, the eco-friendly serum is also made from nourishing, organic ingredients like aloe vera juice, vitamin C, hyaluronic acid, vegan probiotics, and soothing cucumber extract. This serum is suitable for using on your face prior to a moisturizer or on the body.
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