When you go to find a safe CBD topical, you may be blinded by the number of products. You’ll also need to look for the product that best addresses why you’re looking for CBD topicals. Armed with a bit of information, you can confidently find and choose products that fit your needs.
Let’s start with CBD. What is it?
CBD is one of one of more than 60 compounds belonging to a class of molecules called cannabinoids. CBD oil is made from strains of cannabis Sativa that have low levels of THC (tetrahydrocannabinol). As a topical, it comes in the form of lotions, creams, salves, and balms. Applied directly to the skin, CBD in this form gets to the affected area quickly.
How to find safe CBD topicals
With the passing of the 2018 Farm Bill, CBD became widely available and it exploded into the market. From gummies to vapes to topicals, CBD took the health and wellness community by storm. Because we all have an endocannabinoid system (ECS) that keeps the body in balance, CBD is a natural preventive or treatment. The ECS regulates various processes in the body such as appetite, pain and mood, among others. CB receptors that help monitor the ECS are found throughout the skin, and the addition of a CBD topical can help promote healing and balance.
On the other hand, CBD is not regulated, so CBD topicals are not always what they claim to be. That’s where you, as a consumer, need to be on guard. Studies have shown that many products either have too much CBD, not enough CBD or even none at all. So, do yourself a favor and get educated. I can help with that.
Full-spectrum hemp oil
To find safe CBD topicals, look for full-spectrum hemp oil (FSHO) , which contain all the cannabinoids and compounds found in the hemp plant. In addition, it contains many essential vitamins and minerals, fatty acids, proteins, chlorophyll, fiber, flavonoids and terpenes. FSHO contains dozens of cannabinoids. The most abundant is CBD, which makes up 90% of this full-spectrum oil. Other cannabinoids contained in hemp oil are CBD, CBG, CBN and trace levels of THC (under .2%).
Extracted FSHO also contains vitamins A, C and E, as well as B complex vitamins such as riboflavin, thiamine and niacin. In addition, it’s a source of vitamins not sufficiently present in many diets including beta-carotene. As stated above, this FSHO includes numerous minerals, fatty acids, proteins and a host of other components, which further enhance the healthful benefits of this unique oil.
Research the CBD company
A reputable company will fully disclose product ingredients on the website. You’ll also want to look for a CBD oil company that does third-party testing. You’ll also want to ensure that the CBD:
- is made with locally sourced organically grown hemp
- contains no more than 0.3 percent THC, according to the certificate of analysis (COA)
- passes tests for pesticides, heavy metals and molds, according to the COA
Extraction is also an important factor. How was the oil removed from the plant? There are several methods of extraction. The C02 extraction method seems to be the safest. Other methods can leave behind impurities and chlorophyll from the plant. Others heat it to the point of breaking down its efficacy.
C02 extraction, however, provides an FSHO, not an isolate, with few impurities or harmful elements. This method uses pressurized carbon dioxide to remove desirable cannabinoids from the hemp plant. It also removes essential waxes, cannabinoids, and terpenes, giving you a healthy-looking amber-colored oil.
CBD topicals with added chemicals are not the best choice. Read the ingredient list. If you see ingredients such as parabens, mineral oil, propylene glycol, aluminum, sodium laurel sulfate. You get the picture. The ingredient list should include CBD, as well as carrier and essential oils.
Carrier oils such as sweet almond, avocado, grapeseed, and a host of others, in addition to 300-plus essential oils, possess therapeutic benefits of their own. The addition of organic, cold-pressed carrier oils and essential oils, either steam distilled or CO2 extracted, are combined with CBD oil to address conditions from arthritis to skincare.
With the presence of cannabinoid receptors in the human body, the FSHO delivers the natural healing benefits of these carrier and essential oils more effectively and efficiently to target the area of need. Think of it as a streamlined delivery.
Now you have the basics for finding a safe, additive-free CBD topical. Be aware and do your research. This information is not comprehensive and it’s important to read up on products. Know what condition you are trying to treat or what benefit you hope to derive.