CBD, also known as cannabidiol, is emerging as a top-performer amongst natural healthcare. From it’s calming benefits for mental health and sleep benefits to it’s anti-inflammatory and acne-fighting properties, the advantages of CBD seem endless. It’s almost unavoidable, which is why you’re finally looking to get the question answered:
What actually is CBD anyway?
CBD is a cannabinoid compound from the plant cannabis sativa. While it can be derived from the marijuana plant, it’s distinct from THC, the cannabinoid that gets you high. They’re two different ingredients in the mix of everything that makes up the cannabis plant.
Kind of like coffee has caffeine, cannabis can contain THC. However, CBD is equivalent to all of the flavonoids, tastes, and aromas that make coffee so complex. Extract CBD oil from the plant, and you open up a world of health benefits.
One of the wellness attractions of CBD is that it improves the health of your skin.
As an exogenous cannabinoid, it interacts with your endocannabinoid system to kickstart a domino effect of beauty treatments. Topical CBD creams and regular oral dosage of CBD is a game changer for those dealing with acne.
Curious as to how it works? Below, we’ll take a deep dive into CBD oil for acne and how it can help you.
What does CBD do for your skin?
Your skin contains cannabinoid lipids that control pain, temperature, and regular epidermal homeostasis. While many of these occur naturally, exogenous CBD aids to the total and efficacy, much like taking a multivitamin does for your nutrition.
Transient receptor potential (TRP) processes emerge as targets for CBD to treat dermatological issues, as many of these same channels responsible for skin health respond to cannabinoids. CB2, the specific expression of cannabidiol, correlates with the synthesis of keratinocytes in human skin and sebaceous glands.
If that all sounds like gibberish to you, CBD basically links up with the compounds controlling proper growth, death, and rebirth of skin cells to keep everything at just the right level.
CBD has been used as a pain and itch treatment for years. The direct effect of pain on sensory neurons is at least partially mediated by CB2, the endocannabinoid receptor. Some indirect relief also comes from a release of opioid peptides, which can distract from pain and make us feel better.
Why are these important? Anti-inflammatory treatments, itch management, and general homeostasis of the skin are key interventions for the causes and effects of acne.
What Causes Acne?
When your hair follicles get clogged up with dirt or dead skin cells, pimples form. Acne, or chronic pimples, whiteheads, and blackheads, stems from excess oil production or hormones, which is why lots of us get in our teens. Teenagers are sweaty, hormonal beings who unfortunately get stuck with the negative effects of maturation.
Acne tends to appear in places with the most sebaceous (oil-productions) glands. While your body does its best to keep the skin and hair lubricated, sometimes it can be its own worst enemy. Thus, acne forms on our face, upper back, neck and chest.
With all of that being said, what can we do about it?
Avoid Making Acne Worse: What NOT to Do
For some going through hormonal changes, such as pregnancy or adolescence, your best bet is to keep your face clean and eat a healthy diet. Too much or not enough androgen activity causes the oil glands to grow, produce more oil, and create unsightly bumps.
Control your nutrition and avoid inflammatory foods like trans fats and processed carbs to counteract acne from the inside out. Keep your face clean with wipes and regular hygiene to treat it from the outside. Finally, avoid stressful situations, as they trigger greater hormone production and skin reaction.
For some, however, medication seems like the only answer. We’re here to present you with an alternative: CBD oil for acne.
CBD Hemp Oil Regulates Sebaceous Glands
That’s right, friends. Taking hemp oil for acne works by calming down those very oily glands that clog up your pores. When dealing with hormonal changes or oily skin, topical CBD creams or oral ingestion might be a good alternative to medical intervention. It’s natural reaction with your endocannabinoid system avoids chemical treatment for a homeopathic remedy.
CBD Oil Reduces Stress
It’s no secret that cannabis tends to calm people down. But what about CBD specifically?
As it turns out, CBD oils can lower the heart rate by controlling neurotransmitter release. When anxiety attacks, cannabidiol acts on CB2 receptors in the brain to modulate catecholamine and adrenal reaction. Therefore, instead of panting, sweating, and blood rushing to your skin, you can stay relaxed and decrease the chance of clogged pores.
Use CBD Oil to Destroy Inflammation
Finally, and most critically, cannabinoids modulate immune cell function and cytokine production to regulate skin inflammation. Research in mice found that inhibition of the CB1/CB2 receptors induced dermatitis, AKA inflammation of the skin, and increased markers of allergic reactions. Endocannabinoids thus form a critical part of regulatory cutaneous processes to keep our skin fresh.
All three of the above benefits of CBD oil for acne make it a multifaceted solution to your current skin issues. But what about the lingering effects of acne from ages past?
CBD and Scar treatment: What Can I Do about Acne Scars?
A bad acne plague leaves its trace years afterwards through scarring. From signs of picking at it in our teens to depressed skin marks, removing acne scars remains a topic of concern in skincare in which CBD oils show promise.
Why Does Acne Scar in the First Place?
In order to understand CBD treatment, we have to look at the underlying mechanisms of scarring. When a wound occurs to the skin, as in with acne, the natural healing process moves through six stages. According to the World Journal of Surgery, wound healing involves the following:
- Rapid homeostasis: the stage that halts any bleeding through vasoconstriction
- Inflammation: critical to alerting your body to where new, healthy cells need to be distributed, which facilitates healing. Extended inflammation prevents regeneration of skin cells and can make scarring worse, however.
- Proliferation and migration: further constriction of blood vessels and a domino effect of actually moving nutrients to the wound site
- Angiogenesis: the formation of new blood vessels around the wound
- Reepithelialization: the regrowth of damaged skin by forging keratinocytes and layered skin formation
- Synthesis: blood clotting and protein organization to prevent further damage while the rest of the processes occur
While it might seem like the formation of new skin is the only process concerning scars, the final results depends on the healthy function of each segment. Scarring is a natural part of the healing process. Keeping them small and faint, on the other hand, depends on inflammation control, itch management, and continued collagen support for skin health.
Does CBD Oil Fix Acne Scars?
Yes, and also no. There’s a good chance CBD oil can control inflammation of newer scars as the wound healing process takes place. Years-old scarring is a different story.
Cannabidiol triggers anti-inflammatory processes to reduce oxidative stress on tissue. Specifically, a study out of Experimental Cell Research noted CBD’s interaction with the MSC cells that support wound healing. While initial signaling of the MSC pathway leads to helpful inflammation, prolonged cascading of these signals yield improperly healed wounds. CBD oil treatment inhibits immunosuppressive properties on these cells and acted as an antioxidant to restore healthy skin.
The goal of older scar treatment is often to build natural collagen from within to replace damaged skin with new tissue. Orally-administered CBD has shown to interact with collagen-induced arthritis in rats to decrease inflammation and further progression of the disease. But that’s a) in rats b) orally-administered and c) not a scar treatment, only a reaction with collagen II in joints. To extrapolate that research to say cannabidiol is an effective acne scar treatment is a stretch at best.
Fortunately, we’re still in the early stages of CBD research. As preliminary studies have shown promise with cannabis in wound healing and acne treatment, there’s hope that scientific evidence will come soon.
How long does CBD cream take to work?
Since CBD cream is applied directly to the site, anti-redness effects will be seen quickly at the target area. Topical CBD creams for acne have the benefit of bypassing metabolism and distribution across the whole body, and instead work directly on the skin. However, don’t expect to apply it once and miraculously clear your skin.
The truth is – different products yield various results across different time periods. Some creams come with extra oils, vitamins, or minerals to aid absorption, some are more water-based, and all offer distinct CBD concentrations. For a through review on CBD creams, how long it takes for them to work, and how to apply them, visit this YouTube link.
For those of you who feel like you’ve tried every acne treatment in the world, maybe it’s time to try CBD oil for acne. It can deliver dramatic physical and mental effects by not only alleviating constant skin worry, but reducing stress and helping you sleep better at night.
Of course, hemp oil for acne is just the icing on the cake. In order to take a truly holistic approach to acne treatment, focus on eating healthy, exercising regularly, and otherwise taking care of your skin hygiene. Assuming you’ve set a strong foundation, CBD oil for acne serves as a great treatment with little side effect.
Nothing happens overnight, but you have to start by taking the first step. Order CBD creams for acne treatment today, couple it with a healthy lifestyle, and see how you go. At the best, your acne will dissipate. At the worst, you’ll have a naturopathic treatment for inflammation, oily skin, and stress management.
Jessica Rosslee is a former journalist that has dedicated her writing skills and passion for communication to the cannabis industry. Jessica has spent her life in the field of wellness and communication, committed to allowing people access to accurate health and wellness information.
As a freelance cannabis writer, Jessica is passionate about free-flowing education for the public and the destigmatization of cannabis.