Updated: Jul 26, 2019
CBD is the latest and largest craze in the skincare and wellness industry, and for a great reason—the plant-derived compound has been linked to numerous health benefits in the last decade.
The discovery of CBD dates back to the 1940s, but researchers were more interested in THC until much more recently. Now, however, we understand that multiple cannabinoids (not just THC) interact with the body via the endocannabinoid system, a system of neuroreceptors that plays a role in regulating tons of crucial functions, like inflammatory responses and pain signals.
The endocannabinoid system includes thousands of these neuroreceptors in every major organ, including the largest one—the skin. That’s why CBD is being harvested from hemp and cannabis and used to formulate high-quality topical products, which people are using to manage all sorts of topical concerns, ranging from chronic skin conditions to joint pain.
However, not all CBD products are created equal, and what you put on your body is just as important as what you put inside. That’s why it’s important to understand how CBD topicals are formulated and what separates high-quality CBD products from cheaply made alternatives, which could contain pesticides, synthetic cannabinoids, allergens, and other potentially harmful additives. Some cheap hemp products may even contain no CBD at all!
At Sacred Biology, we know how important a clean manufacturing process is to producing high-quality products. Further, we carefully consider every single ingredient used in formulating our CBD skincare and topical products, leaving out any questionable ingredients to ensure efficacy and consumer safety. Finally, we include wholesome, all-natural, organic additives as needed to help boost the effects of CBD. That’s why our products aren’t only made well—they work well, too.
Understanding what goes into high-quality CBD topicals is the first step to choosing a safe an effective CBD product that meets your needs. With understanding and careful consideration, you can find a CBD topical product that meets your needs and provides you with high-quality, long-lasting CBD relief.
Potentially Harmful Additives to Lookout For
There are several ingredients that are commonly utilized in the creation of skincare and topical products that may be linked to adverse effects. Other popular additives include common allergens and synthetic materials that can be harsh on sensitive skin. Some potentially harmful ingredients to look out for include:
Gluten: Some skin care products contain gluten, as they are made from cheap oils extracted from wheat, rye, or barley. Researchers suggest that as many as 7% of the population suffers from gluten sensitivity. Studies have linked gluten intolerance to certain skin conditions, but there are no studies yet to explain any potential adverse reaction when using gluten as a topical product. However, people with extreme sensitivities to gluten could experience adverse reactions when using these topicals near the mouth, such as in a lip balm.
GMOs: Many topical products are made with genetically modified ingredients, or GMO’s, usually in an attempt to use cheaper source ingredients. The safety of GMO’s is unknown, as no large clinical trials exist to explain the impact of these genetically modified organisms on our body. Many experts suspect that several adverse effects are possible, like gene transfer or allergic reaction, and many consumers frequently avoid GMO’s due to this uncertainty surrounding their function within the body.
Parabens: Parabens are a type of preservative frequently used in cosmetic and household products, but consumers have uncovered reasons to avoid them. Mostly because the genetic structure of parabens is similar to that of estrogen, and experts suggest that when combined with certain agents that promote cellular growth, parabens may upset the hormone balance. Other experts have even suggested a link between parabens and an increased risk of breast cancer.
Phthalates: Often used as a solvent in cosmetics and topicals, phthalates have been frequently called a toxic chemical. In fact, some sources link high exposure to phthalates to damage to the liver, kidneys, lungs and even reproductive system, particularly in developing males.
Artificial Dyes: Several studies exist that outline the potential dangers of artificial dyes, especially in children. In fact, many of the approved artificial dyes used in food and skincare products in the U.S. have either been linked to behavioral issues, outlined as a carcinogen or are inadequately tested for safety.
Artificial Fragrance: Artificial fragrances are synthetic chemicals made to add a pleasant aroma to topical products, often used as a cheaper alternative to essential oils and natural fragrance. Among the multiple reported side effects of exposure to artificial fragrances (like headaches and nausea), experts have suggested that the regular use of artificial fragrances may cause cancer.
At Sacred Biology, all of our skincare and topical products are formulated without these potentially harmful additives. Because we refrain from using synthetic fragrances, colors, and other allergens, our products are more available to a wide range of users, including those who may have skin sensitivities or allergies. Plus, our products are free of known carcinogens are responsibly and ethically sourced, making them better for you and for the earth.
With consumer consciousness on the rise, more and more brands are beginning to remove these substances from their products. This includes many major CBD brands, which seemingly opens up a lot of options for health-conscious users.
But Is Removing These Ingredients Enough?
It’s hard to say. You can definitely assume that products that leave out potential allergens and synthetic chemicals are probably much safer with a lower chance of an adverse reaction. However, the efficacy of your CBD product depends mostly on what is inside, not what isn’t.
The ingredients that go into your CBD topicals of choice are incredibly important since they generally work to play one of three crucial roles. One of these roles is to help the product maintain the proper shape and consistency. It may not sound like a lot, but the consistency of a topical product has a lot to do with how it is absorbed by the skin, how well it stays in place, and ultimately, how effective the product can be.
Another important reason that ingredients are chosen for topicals is to aid the absorption of CBD by the body. Although it is still a bit hazy how it all comes into play during topical application of cannabidiol, research shows that CBD required a carrier, like essential fatty acids or alcohol, to be properly absorbed by the body.
Additionally, many ingredients are chosen because of their unique health benefits that may complement or boost the effects of CBD. For instance, certain essential oils have therapeutic effects that make them a great addition to targeted CBD topical products.
Now that you understand why particular ingredients are chosen in the formulation of topical products, you’ve probably realized the most important question of all:
What Actually Goes Into High-Quality CBD Topicals?
The most obvious answer is “high-quality CBD.” But what does that mean? CBD can be a highly effective anti-inflammatory and antioxidant option for topicals—two of the most important characteristics for healing most skin-related ailments. But that is only true if the CBD is of high-quality, which means it follows a rigorous manufacturing process from seed to sale.
At Sacred Biology, out CBD is sourced from high-quality industrial hemp right here in the U.S. Then, each product is batch tested along the way to ensure the exclusion of mold, pesticides, heavy metals, microbials, residual solvents, or other potentially harmful additives that could have infiltrated the manufacturing process. As a last assurance of efficacy, each batch is also tested to ensure its rich terpene and cannabinoid profile.
No matter how premium the plant material is, CBD topicals are nothing without high-quality ingredients. Each ingredient serves a particular purpose, or sometimes multiple purposes, that add therapeutic value to the product.
When we formulate Sacred Biology’s CBD topicals, we carefully consider each ingredient to ensure that the topicals we create are just as wholesome and natural as the high-quality CBD that powers each product.
As we mentioned, some ingredients are chosen to help products maintain shape and consistency. Ingredients that we choose for this purpose may include beeswax, coconut oil, or shea butter, which pose as wholesome alternatives to petroleum-based oils or other harsh ingredients.
Many of these ingredients also serve a dual purpose--aiding the absorption of Cannabidiol. Coconut oil, shea butter, and other plant-derived oils carry a considerable amount of the fatty acids needed for the body to utilize CBD. Another popular option is using the oil extracted from the hemp plant alongside CBD, which is why many high-quality CBD products include hemp oil as a main ingredient or primary carrier oil.
Aside from the quality of the source material, though, what really sets CBD topical products apart is the unique profile of targeted ingredients, like essential oils and herbal remedies. These ingredients are chosen for their colorful characteristics, which may include their range of health benefits or unique aromas. Cannabidiol offers a range of benefits that make it useful in many types of topical products, but these ingredients are the key to creating a CBD product that does its job.
An example of this would be the inclusion of organic arrowroot powder, which helps absorb moisture, and sodium bicarbonate (baking soda), which fights odor, in our CBD deodorant. CBD helps fight the odor-causing bacteria on the skin, while arrowroot, baking soda, and a blend of other wholesome ingredients eliminate additional odors, keep you dry, and leave behind a pleasant citrusy aroma.
Perhaps an even better example is the blend of ingredients in our CBD muscle rub, designed to help target pain an inflammation wherever you need it most. The analgesic powers of menthol and arnica combine with the anti-inflammatory benefits of turmeric oil, all which delightfully complement the pain and inflammation-relieving effects of CBD to create a muscle rub that delivers immediate, targeted relief to joints, ligaments, muscles and more.
Our CBD Healing Balm showcases these health-boosting effects with a blend of wholesome ingredients, like rosehip seed oil, which provides a burst of antioxidants that speed recovery and reduce the appearance of scars. We add a touch of calendula oil to help soothe irritated skin, along with the same high-quality CBD that powers our entire line of topical products.
There are many different CBD topicals out there, but the end goal of a high-quality cannabidiol product is always the same: to provide as much relief as possible. That’s why we only add ingredients that boost the benefits of each product, and never fillers, synthetic additives, parabens, or harsh preservatives that could take away from the powerful healing properties of CBD.