Joining the ranks of CBD gummies, oils and vaporizers are CBD topicals like lotions and creams. CBD cream is created by infusing the extracted cannabis or hemp oils into a topical solution like a cream or a lotion. Essentially, just a regular cream with a bit of CBD mixed in.

As more CBD (cannabidiol) infused beauty products hit the market, it might be tempting to incorporate them into your skincare regimen. In this article, we’ll share our picks for the best CBD topicals on the market and answer the hard-hitting questions about CBD cream that will tell you what you need to know before adding them to your routine.

How do CBD creams and topicals work?

CBD topicals work with your body’s CB2 receptors and bind with your body’s endocannabinoid system to activate the receptors that absorb moisture through your skin. When phytocannabinoids are present in the cream, it can influence additional benefits like pain and itch relief and that you won’t experience when using a standard moisturizing cream.

Our top picks for the best CBD creams and topicals

  • Best All-Purpose Cream – Spruce, Topical CBD Cream
  • Best Pain Relief Formula – Sabai Dee Relief Rub
  • Best Face Cream – Calm By Wellness, Hemp CBD Calendula Face Cream
  • Best High-Potency Topical – Straight Hemp CBD Balm
  • Best Topical for Dry Skin – CBDfx CBD Cream – 150mg

Spruce Topical CBD Cream, Best All-Purpose Cream

Spruce’s CBD cream is made from 100% lab-grade CBD and all-natural plant-derived scents. It’s gentle enough to use on even sensitive skin and provides relief from dry skin, itchiness, pain, and inflammation. Each 2-ounce jar contains 300mg of CBD and can be applied as often as you need it to affected skin.

CBD quality

Spruce uses CBD sourced from family-owned, sustainable farms in Kentucky and North Carolina. These farms produce some of the highest quality and most effective CBD on the market.

Transparency

Every batch of Spruce products is independently lab tested by a third-party lab to rule out the presence of any bacteria pesticides or other harmful contaminants. You can download the latest copy of their lab results on their website. The one downside is that they don’t provide specific information for each product, only the general lab results for each batch.

Customer experience

Spruce ships its products to all 50 states. Their products ship every weekday morning at (am EST and packages typically arrive within 2-4 business days via first class USPS.

Pros

  • US grown hemp – Spruce uses very high-quality ingredients in their CBD, including Certified US Grown hemp.
  • Transparency about lab testing – We take transparency very seriously when it comes to CBD, and Spruce does a great job at disclosing their process, hemp source, and lab reports on their website.

Cons

  • No international shipping – Due to a large number of their packages being seized in other countries, Spruce no longer offers international shipping at this time.
  • No expedited shipping services – They work with USPS to make sure packages arrive within at least four days from the time of purchase. However, they don’t offer any alternate or overnight shipping options.

Sabai Dee Relief Rub, Best Pain Relief Blend

Sabai Dee Relief Rub uses a combination of natural oils and botanicals in addition to Sabai Dee’s organically grown, broad-spectrum hemp CBD.

The balm contains a subtle peppermint scent. Unlike other pain relief balms, it doesn’t have an overwhelming menthol scent, which can be off-putting for some people. It contains no artificial ingredients or fragrances. The key healing element in this blend is Camphor oil, which, when applied topically, provides antioxidants and soothing relief to the skin.

CBD quality

Their hemp is 100% organically grown at a registered hemp farm in Colorado. All of their products contain less than 0.3% THC making them legal across all 50 states.

Transparency

Sabai Dee tests each batch of their CBD oil once in house and then two more times at an independent third party lab by a team of scientists. You can view all of their lab reports on their website.

Customer experience

They offer fast and free shipping on all products ordered within the United States. Their website is easy to navigate, and their customer service team is readily available to answer any questions I may have.

Pros

  • Triple lab tested – Sabai Dee doesn’t mess around with their lab testing. All of their products are triple lab tested, and they make the results readily available on their website.
  • All-natural relief formula – This cream uses a unique blend of oils and hemp extracts to provide extra relief against tricky skin ailments. It relieves pain and inflammation using only natural ingredients.

Cons

  • Strong scent – While most people love the smell of Sabai Dee’s cream, if you don’t like mint, you might not enjoy the smell. It is subtle but powerful.
    Calm By Wellness, Hemp CBD Calendula Face Cream

Calm By Wellness, Calendula Face Cream, Best Face Cream

The skin on your face is one of the most sensitive areas of your body. The Calm by Wellness Calendula Cream is a highly moisturizing cream designed specifically for your face. It helps rejuvenate your skin and doesn’t contain any harsh ingredients that can irritate your skin. It’s a perfect combination of calendula, which has potent anti-inflammatory and healing properties, and broad-spectrum CBD.

CBD quality

Calm by Wellness uses a proprietary CBD blend that retains over 80 naturally occurring cannabinoids and terpenes from the hemp plant. They use CBD made from domestically grown hemp that is certified non-GMO and produced from organic, USDA certified seeds.

Transparency

All Calm by Wellness products is lab tested in an ISO9001 and CGMP certified facility and achieve the highest level of food-grade safety certifications. They also publish the full certificate of analysis on their website. However, they do not list the lab reports for individual products.

Customer experience

They offer a generous 30-day money-back guarantee on any products that you are not 100% satisfied with. All of Calm by Wellness’ products have full write-ups on their website, making it easy to choose the right one for you, even if you’re a new CBD user. You can also sign up for a 30-day risk-free trial if you are a new user.

Pros

  • 30-day money-back guarantee – The company has a no-questions-asked 30-day money-back guarantee. If for any reason you don’t like your face cream, you can let them know and they will send you a return label to ship your order back for free.
  • Extensive topical product line – in addition to the face cream, Calm by Wellness also sells CBD lotion, muscle gel, and lip balm.

Cons

  • No free shipping – Calm by Wellness currently doesn’t offer free shipping. They make up for this by shipping their products very quickly, and people usually receive orders within four days.

Straight Hemp CBD Balm, Best High-Potency Topical Cream

Straight Hemp’s CBD balm uses terpene-rich CBD that contains arnica Montana and magnesium for added relief. It’s blended with 15 therapeutic-grade essential oils to help improve absorption into the skin. It’s specially formulated, high potency blend helps you achieve the relief you need, quickly and efficiently. It contains a blend of full-spectrum CBD with additional cannabinoids which creates an entourage effect which makes the blend feel even more potent.

CBD quality

Straight Hemp CBD comes from hemp grown on high-quality soil in Colorado. Their CBD retains cannabinoids and terpenes from the hemp plant and still fall below the federal THC limit of 0.3%. All of their CBD is tested to ensure that they’re clean of butane, ethyl alcohol, and other harmful chemicals.

Transparency

Straight Hemp tests its products at an independent ISO 17025 certified lab located in the U.S. They publish all of their Certificates of Analysis (COAs) on their website for each individual product. You can enter the batch number on your product and see the lab report for their specific batch.

Customer experience

They have stores all over the US as well as an online shop making it easy for anyone to order their products. They ship quickly and discreetly to ensure privacy and offer refunds within 30 days of purchase. We also love that Straight Hemp offers discounts for military, first responders and teachers and professors.

Pros

  • Thorough lab testing – Straight Hemp discloses a lot about their lab testing process. They make all lab test results readily available to customers and the general public.
  • Easy shopping experience – The Straight Hemp website is very easy to navigate, and it’s nice that they also sell their products in stores. They have quick shipping times, a generous return policy. We also love that they use discreet shipping materials and labels when sending your package

Cons

  • Lack of brand information – Straight Hemp doesn’t disclose much about their history as a company or how they were formed which raises some questions about their brand.

CBDfx CBD Cream 150mg, Best Dry Skin Formula

This formula is perfect for adding moisture back into cracked, dull or dry skin. Its light and airy texture are perfect for sensitive skin and the added white willow and menthol provides a hint of cooling and heating to nourish your body and target any discomfort in your skin.

CBD quality

Their CBD is 100% organically grown, and GMO-free. This formula contains full spectrum CBD as well as menthol and white willow bark to create a cooling and soothing effect.

Transparency

All CBDfx products are tested by an independent third party lab for purity and quality. The lab reports are all available on their website for your review.

Customer experience

The customer service over at CBDfx really stood out to us. It’s very easy to speak with a representative if you have any issues with your order or questions about their products or CBD in general.

Pros

  • All-natural ingredients – CBDfx cream doesn’t contain any added chemicals that could be harmful to your skin.
  • Unique creamy formula – users love this topical formula because it’s light, yet powerful, but not greasy which makes it ideal for sensitive and dry skin.

Cons

  • Small product size – The size of their products in comparison to the cost is on the higher side compared to other CBD companies. However, their products are of high quality and they offer a wide selection to choose from that other companies don’t have.

What are the benefits of using CBD cream?

Topical CBD can immediately provide instant relief whenever they are applied, and you don’t need to wait long for them to kick in. CBD topical creams are mostly used to treat affected areas of your body experiencing discomfort like pain, itchiness or swelling.

People most commonly use CBD pain cream for pain management and to reduce inflammation, but they have other purposes as well. Topicals are also used to reduce pain from headaches, migraines, and cramping. There is also evidence showing that, when applied to the skin, CBD can help reduce symptoms of psoriasis, dermatitis, eczema, and general itching.

In addition to its healing qualities, CBD cream is also great for your skin. Some CBD creams can help reduce acne and swelling by regulating oil production in your skin’s sebaceous glands.

Whether you’re dealing with chronic pain or the occasional flare-up, CBD cream is an excellent alternative to pharmaceutical ointments or pain relievers.

While a lot of CBD pain relievers used to come in the form of tinctures, oils or capsules, we’re seeing more and more CBD incorporated into skin products like creams, salves, and ointments. As more of CBD products ht the market, it’s creating a more accessible approach to healing for people who don’t want to consume CBD directly.

In a recent study, CBD ointment applied to rats with arthritic knee joints helped to reduce joint pain, swelling and knee pain. In other experiments, CBD topicals exhibited anti-inflammatory qualities on the subjects observed.

CBD has demonstrated the ability to alleviate chronic pain, acute pain, sore muscles and joints, and muscle spasms.

When using CBD specifically to target pain, look for products that contain B-caryophyllene and pinene. These two terpenes are work in synergy with CBD and THC to reduce inflammation and swelling.

If you’re an athlete, or just enjoy the casual workout, physical activity can take a toll on your muscles and joints. Your muscles build, and change and physical strain causes micro-tears which lead to pain. To repair and heal your sore muscles, you can take some time to rest, and you can also use CBD topicals, like CBD cream, to repair them. CBD cream can potentially reduce pain and soreness as well as the effects of inflammation from working out and fast-track the healing process.

In addition to treating pain, CBD topicals can also alleviate mild skin irritations but scratches, rashes, burns, mild infections and symptoms of psoriasis. CBD cream has also been proven to reduce the appearance of acne due to its anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties. When applied topically, THC-infused creams were found to reduce inflammation in patients with eczema as well.

How to use CBD Cream

After making sure that you don’t have allergies to any of the ingredients, apply the CBD cream generously on any part of your skin experiencing pain or irritation.

Patients with arthritis reported more rapid pain relief by applying CBD topicals directly to points of pain and inflammation.

Will CBD Cream Get You High?

No, CBD cream cannot get you high.

Most CBD is THC-free. But, depending on the CBD cream you choose, it might contain small amounts of THC, but it still won’t be potent enough to make you feel high or euphoric like you would consuming cannabis. The cannabinoids in CBD creams will absorb into your skin, but they don’t enter the bloodstream. CBD topicals can’t penetrate your skin deep enough to make you feel anything other than extra moisturized.

So you don’t need to worry about failing a drug test or accidentally getting high after your morning shower.

Are There Any Side Effects Of CBD Cream?

As always, consult with a doctor before using any kind of topical, especially if you are having a skin reaction or experiencing discomfort. It is possible that a CBD cream might interact unfavorably with certain medications or other topicals you’re using on your skin. It’s uncommon that you would experience severe side effects, but we always recommend speaking with a doctor first.

Another way to avoid potential side effects is to check the ingredients of the CBD cream you’re using. If you have sensitive skin, certain ingredients like beeswax or various oils might cause a reaction or slight breakout if your skin is not used to them. In most cases, natural and essential oils used in creams are suitable for your skin, but if you’re prone to sensitivity, it’s a good idea to test the cream on a small portion of your skin before committing to using it all over.

This might seem obvious, but CBD cream should not be ingested or smoked under any circumstances. Swallowing the cream could result in serious side effects.

Does CBD Cream work differently than other CBD products?

CBD creams differ from CBD or hemp oils because of their consistency, texture and the potency of the CBD present within them. Also, depending on the topical you’re using, the potency of CBD will differ. Ointments are usually the most potent of the CBD topicals because they are primarily used to provide instant relief.

The difference with CBD oil is that when you use it, you’ll experience pain relief throughout your body, whereas using a topical will reduce pain symptoms locally, where the cream is applied. CBD oil can reduce the pain temporarily, but it won’t get to the source and heal the skin where the pain is coming from.

CBD creams can still be potent, but the added water and other moisturizing ingredients cause the CBD to dilute more than it would in an oil or ointment.

Since CBD cream is applied topically, it only affects the surface layers of your skin. Other methods of CBD use that require you to ingest or inhale the product allow the CBD to enter your bloodstream. In cases where you’re ingesting CBD, it impacts your central nervous system, the endocannabinoid system, and receptors in your brain. CBD creams and other topicals don’t enter the bloodstream since your skin has very low permeability.

CBD products that you inhale or consume also have different benefits from CBD topicals. CBD edibles, flower or tinctures are often used to reduce insomnia and help with anxiety, depression, or other mental disorders.

Can CBD Cream replace lotion?

We’ve talked a lot about the medicinal benefits of using a CBD topical, but even if you don’t suffer from any pain or skin irritation, CBD cream is a great moisturizer for no other use other than to create softer skin. CBD is full of antioxidants that work to repair your skin cells which can help reduce wrinkles, fine lines and give your skin a more youthful glow.

If you think your skin has lost it’s healthy glow and are just looking to add more radiance CBD cream is a great alternative to other beauty creams and lotions. The compounds in the CBD cream can also help protect your skin from harmful UV rays and bacteria.

Final Thoughts

CBD is changing the way the public views cannabis use and is quickly becoming a staple in the wellness community for its abilities to minimize pain and induce a calming effect. Your skin is the largest organ in your body. Make sure it’s taken care of by using products that are designed to heal it naturally, without the use of harmful chemicals. As we mentioned, before you dive headfirst into a bottle of CBD cream, check with a doctor to make sure it won’t interact with any other medications or creams you’re using. Although there are little to no side effects associated, it’s better to be safe than sorry.

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