BY MARIE LODI
More often than not, a beauty routine requires a lot of trial and error before it can reach perfection, and that's especially true when it comes to skincare. Trying to find the most effective cleansers, serums, and moisturizers can be akin to searching for buried treasure. And for those with particularly sensitive skin, finding the right products can be even more burdensome. That’s where CBD can—and should!—step in.
Sensitive skin is essentially a blanket term for all sorts of skin conditions, including rosacea, eczema, contact dermatitis, acne, and dryness. Since cannabidiol—commonly referred to as CBD—is known to alleviate inflammation (which comes to life via rashes, redness, and irritation), it can be a beneficial ingredient for sensitive skin types. Studies have also shown CBD to regulate sebum production, which is good news for dry skin-sufferers, who produce less sebum than people who don't have any problems with dry skin.
But is topical CBD the best solution for sensitive skin, or is there another format that's more effective? “Topical is definitely the best, but everything you take internally is reflected relatively quickly in the skin,” says Dr. Jeanette Jacknin, M.D., a board-certified dermatologist in San Diego. So, based on that, using a topical ointment alongside a capsule or tincture certainly wouldn’t hurt. Dr. Jacknin is also a proponent of full-spectrum CBD, due to the possibility of added benefits through synergistic combination. “Full spectrum doesn't mean it has THC; it just means it has the other cannabinoids and terpenes. People refer to what's known as the Entourage Effect, where one [cannabinoid or terpene] helps the other,” she says. “So, I personally prefer full-spectrum.”
There are, of course, plenty of dermatologist-recommended skincare products for sensitive skin readily available. If you already have a go-to moisturizer or some other topical and are curious about bringing CBD into the loop, it’s certainly worth some experimentation. As for application tips, Dr. Jacknin suggests adding one drop of CBD oil to your regular formula and applying it to your hand, that way you can see how your skin will respond before applying it in more visible areas, like your face. “I wouldn't start with more than 5 mL,” she advises. “Start small, with one drop, and then you can add another, and another,” she says. Slow and steady wins the race.
Ultimately, Dr. Jacknin says to always pay attention to how your skin reacts to any ingredient, and to also keep in mind that just because something is “natural,” it doesn’t mean that you’re entirely safe. “Make sure you're not sensitive to whatever the carrier [oil] is for the CBD you select, whether it’s emu oil, coconut oil, or something else. A lot of people are sensitive to natural essential oils or herbs,” Dr. Jacknin explains. The main takeaway when it comes to CBD’s potential as a savior for sensitive skin: “Everybody is different,” she says. “You may react differently than somebody else.”