CBD Oil's Benefits for Skin: Can it Help With Acne, Anti-Aging, & Other Skin Issues?

CBD Oil's Benefits for Skin: Can it Help With Acne, Anti-Aging, & Other Skin Issues?

CBD oil is being marketed in skin care products for everything from acne to wrinkles. But is any of that possible, or is it just marketing hype? These are the CBD facts you need to know.

What Is CBD Oil?

CBD (also known as cannabidiol) is the non-psychotropic component of marijuana or hemp. CBD oil is a mixture of the CBD isolate (pure CBD) + an oil like olive, hemp, or coconut. CBD oil won’t get you high because it doesn’t have the mind-altering properties of marijuana’s tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) content (they are sourced in different ways).

It is also important to know that CBD oil is not the same thing as hemp seed oil. The two are often marketed interchangeably, but CBD oil is richly concentrated in cannabidiol, whereas hemp seed oil only contains trace amounts of cannabidiol, if any.

To ensure that you’re truly getting skin care containing CBD, look for “cannabidiol” on the ingredient list.

CBD Oil for Acne

What’s clear from numerous studies is that CBD oil functions as an anti-inflammatory. So how does that translate to skin care? One way is its ability to help calm skin, particularly skin that’s acne-prone. Because acne is an inflammatory condition, research indicates CBD’s soothing properties can help diminish breakouts and reduce redness. Surprisingly, recent findings also show that CBD has the potential to decrease excessive sebum (oil) production, as well as help offset other triggers of acne.

Without question, far more conclusive, scientific studies are needed, but CBD’s potential as an alternative acne solution is exciting. In the meantime, you can read up on other acne treatments with definitive research supporting them.

CBD Oil for Anti-Aging and Wrinkles

It turns out CBD oil also has antioxidant properties which contribute to the research indicating it can help lessen the visible signs of aging skin. By counteracting free-radical damage, CBD anti-aging creams may be able to help visibly diminish issues like wrinkles, skin dullness, and ruddy skin tone.

Of course, there are plenty of other antioxidants out there that can make the same claims so CBD isn’t the only or “best” antioxidant to seek out; rather, it’s just one of many to consider (learn more about our favorite antioxidant-rich serums).

CBD Oil for Sensitive Skin

Another benefit of CBD oil is that it has been found to have significant soothing properties. Its substantial skin-calming and skin-normalizing effects can help minimize issues related to skin sensitivity, including redness. Even if you don’t think of your skin as “sensitive” per se, all skin types are affected by environmental stressors, so CBD’s soothing mechanism can help keep skin in check.

But Is CBD Oil Even Legal?

Here’s the confusing part: The legality of CBD-based cosmetic products in the U.S. and around the world is murky at best and open to differing interpretations because regulations differ from state-to-state and by country. Nevertheless, we’re seeing more and more beauty products claiming to contain CBD sold worldwide.

The bottom line: As long as it’s extracted within the proper parameters, CBD oil does have benefits for skin. We’ll be following the research and the regulations closely, and we’re excited to see how the research behind CBD oil’s topical benefits continues to grow.

References for this information:
Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapies, June 2018, pages 652-663
Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology, July 2017, pages 188-190
Cannabis and Cannabinoid Research, June 2017, pages 139-154
EBioMedicine, February 2017, pages 3-5
European Journal of Pain, July 2016, pages 936-948
DARU Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences, October 2015, pages 1-17
Journal of Clinical Investigation, September 2014, pages 3,713-3,724
Free Radical Biology and Medicine, September 2011, pages 1,045-1,061
U.S. Department of Justice, Drug Enforcement Administration, e-publication

About the Experts

Paula Begoun is the best-selling author of 20 books about skincare and makeup. She is known worldwide as The Cosmetics Cop and creator of Paula’s Choice Skincare. Paula’s expertise has led to hundreds of appearances on national and international radio, print, and television including:

The Paula's Choice Research Team is dedicated to busting beauty myths and providing expert advice that solves your skincare frustrations so you can have the best skin of your life!