We recently teamed up with Portland company Peak Extracts to develop luxury CBD chocolate bars. Now the ladies at Peak ventured from the edible world into the topical territory to create new CBD lotions made with Extract Labs oils that are as potent and high-end as their other products.
Peak Extract’s founder, Katie Stem started her company after creating single-strain chocolates to alleviate her Crohn’s disease, a type of inflammatory bowel issue. That path led her to become a licensed herbalist in Chinese medicine, which inspired her topical recipe. Peak’s 2000-milligram CBD and GBG Rescue Rubs are cannabis-infused versions of an ancient Eastern remedy for blunt force trauma and inflammation. The Peak team says that “the other herbs in the formula synergize with the [cannabis], a known analgesic, and create a stronger topical that is absorbed faster into the tissues.”
Since we have new CBD topicals available on our digital shelves, we thought we would look further into cannabis creams.
Reasons to Use a CBD Lotion
1. CBD Topicals for Pain
Many people seek out CBD for pain relief, making topicals a fitting delivery method since they are applied directly onto trouble areas. The Peak team mentions on their site that Rescue Rubs are ”invaluable for people who need pain relief but are worried about psychoactive effects.” This has always been the downside of THC’s multitude of medical benefits (and why CBD consumables and smokables are a suitable alternative beyond lotions and salves).
For instance, 94 percent of arthritis patients who respond to an Arthritis Foundation poll tried out non-psychoactive CBD specifically for pain. Other research-backed, pain-related uses are for MS spasms and muscle tension, anxiety-related muscle tension, as well as your garden variety muscle soreness from physical activity or strain. (We discuss the CBD medical research in-depth in our other post, Does CBD Work for Pain?)
While tinctures and edibles also work for pain relief, there are two reasons why pain sufferers might prefer a CBD salve, lotion, or other topical—the time it takes to work and the ability to target specific areas. Anyone who has ever used a lidocaine patch or menthol cream has experienced topicals’ fast response. According to Peak, the Rescue Rubs take about 5 minutes to take effect and last about 4 hours. And speaking of menthol, many CBD creams for pain relief include other ingredients like menthol that are known to soothe and cool, buoying the effects of the topical.
2. CBD Creams for Skin
Due to its anti-inflammatory properties, the American Academy of Dermatology suggested CBD products to supplement treatments for eczema and psoriasis. AAD also said it can be used in tandem with acne treatments. A 2014 study explored CBD’s effect on sebocytes, the cells that produce an oily natural skin protectant called sebum. But sebocytes that produce too much sebum often result in acne. CBD showed to reduce sebum production in the study.
Many others use CBD topicals in their standard skincare routine due to their antioxidant properties, which some think may help fight aging. What type of topical is best comes down to personal preference. CBD creams often have an oil or fat base such as shea butter or coconut oil, CBD balms and salves often have a wax base, while CBD lotions are typically water-based.
CBD Topical Potency
CBD does not pass through the skin easily, so a potent CBD cream is necessary. The average potency of CBD topicals ranges between 3 and 8 milligrams per application. High-potency products are over eight milligrams, according to a Healthline article on CBD topicals.
When purchasing CBD creams, it’s best to search for a certificate of analysis that demonstrates what’s in the cream. This way you are confident you are getting your money’s worth and experience the full benefits of a CBD topical.
Jamie Evans, aka The Herb Somm, is a trained wine scholar turned cannabis connoisseur. She was in the beverage industry for over 10 years and