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A number of health benefits of CBD oil have been tested in vitro (i.e., with cells and tissues instead of living beings) as well as via animal studies, and some have even been examined in human clinical studies. However, until a health benefit has been validated by peer-reviewed, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical studies, it's impossible to know for sure if CBD – or any supplement – actually has the purported effect.
If you read the ingredient list, often everything in the jar is straight from mother earth. As long as that's indeed the case with the cream you have your eye on, the formula is immensely safe, chemically, says Gregory Gerdeman, Ph.D., neurophysiologist who researches cannabinoid biology and pharmacology at Eckerd College in Saint Petersburg, FL.. And since they're formulated to be topical—absorbing into the top layer of skin—and not transdermal—which would pass through the skin and into your bloodstream—there's no risk of getting high, Gerdeman explains. (P.S. Here's How Marijuana Affects Athletic Performance.)
Let's start with the most officially proven medical use of CBD. Earlier this year, the FDA approved the first-ever drug containing CBD, Epidiolex, to treat two rare forms of pediatric epilepsy. To get to that point, the drug's manufacturers had to do a whole lot of randomized, placebo-controlled trials on humans. They had to study how much children could take, what would happen in case of overdose, and any possible side effects that would occur.
Oils are hot in the beauty world. As a beauty editor, I’ve slathered everything short of butter onto my face: argan, coconut, rosehip, sandalwood, chia, neroli, calendula, mandarin, macadamia, rice bran, seabuckthorn, patchouli, grapefruit seed, sesame seed, soybean, sweet almond, pomegranate seed, lemon myrtle, sunflower seed—even extra virgin olive oil from my pantry when I was desperate. I’ve washed my face with oil-based cleansers, and dabbed expensive mixtures being sold as “face oils” onto my skin in hopes of achieving that Instagram-ready glow. Contrary to popular belief, the right oil is actually good for your face and won’t clog your pores. Your skin needs a reasonable amount of oil to do its business; as a matter of fact, if you scrub away all your natural face oil (as I was prone to do with rubbing alcohol as a frustrated and misguided pizza-faced teen), you may actually be prone to more breakouts as your skin tries to make up for the imbalance. As cannabis meets up with the mainstream beauty world, cannabidiol (CBD) oil may be the next big thing.
It’s important that you are applying the CBD topical to areas of the skin that are unaffected by other skin-care products. Making sure that you are applying your topicals to clean, product-free skin ensures that your skin is effectively absorbing the oil in its entirety. Mixing CBD oil with other products will only dilute the effects and reduce its effectiveness.