CBD, or cannabidiol, has become an increasingly popular supplement and self-care ingredient in recent years. Unlike THC, the psychoactive compound in cannabis, CBD provides therapeutic effects without the high. When applied topically in lotions, CBD offers targeted relief and skin nourishment. Keep reading for a comprehensive guide to CBD lotion.

An Overview of CBD

CBD is one of over 100 active compounds found in cannabis plants called cannabinoids. However, most CBD today comes from industrial hemp, defined as cannabis with less than 0.3% THC. CBD interacts with the body’s endocannabinoid system, which regulates various processes like pain, mood, immunity, stress response, and sleep.

When applied to the skin, CBD absorbs into the superficial fatty layer. It can then interact with nearby cannabinoid receptors, providing soothing effects.

The Benefits of Using CBD Lotion

CBD lotion combines CBD’s therapeutic properties with the moisturizing and emollient qualities of lotions. This allows the CBD to penetrate multiple skin layers without clogging pores.

Research shows CBD lotions, creams, and balms may help reduce pain and inflammation, calm skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis, hydrate dry and aged skin, and more. The additional ingredients often enhance these benefits. Let’s explore some of the science behind using CBD lotion for health and wellness.

Pain and Inflammation Relief

Several studies reveal promising results on transdermal CBD for pain and inflammation. Researchers believe CBD interacts with pain receptors and inflammatory pathways in part by delaying the reuptake of the neurotransmitter anandamide. CBD may also reduce swelling by suppressing certain proinflammatory signals.

Analyses report effective pain relief from CBD lotions among arthritis patients. Similarly, sports injuries like sprains heal faster with CBD lotion. Migraine, nerve pain, and cramps also diminish with regular localized use.

Skin Nourishment

Free radicals and environmental pollutants wreak havoc on our skin over time. Research finds full-spectrum CBD lotion containing antioxidants helps reverse and prevent this damage. CBD also modulates key receptors in skin cell signalling pathways.

In several trials, CBD improved symptoms of skin conditions like acne, eczema, and psoriasis after regular use. It also increases moisture retention in the skin’s outer layer for hydration and elasticity. CBD may even help manage skin reactions from radiation cancer therapies.

Mental Relaxation

Lotion enables CBD to absorb into areas dense with sensory nerves, like hands, feet, neck and temples. Scientists suspect CBD desensitizes sensory receptors, inducing calmness through various neurochemical pathways. It may also alter serotonin signals involved in mood regulation.

Studies confirm CBD’s calming, relaxing effects. Massaging CBD lotion into the skin delivers these mental and physical soothing benefits right to tense areas for fast-acting relief.

Different Types of CBD Lotions

CBD lotions come in different formulations optimized for various purposes. By understanding the forms, you can better match products to your needs.

Regular CBD Lotions

CBD lotions and creams for daily use typically contain a middle concentration around 300-500mg per bottle. They combine CBD extracts with skin softening ingredients like shea butter, aloe vera, various essential oils and more. These everyday lotions keep skin smooth and help manage occasional aches.

High Potency CBD Lotions

Some CBD lotions offer higher concentrations between 750-1500mg for increased support. They deliver more CBD with each pump or application. High potency CBD lotions work well for soothing sore muscles after intense exercise or providing deeper relaxation.

Full Spectrum CBD Lotions

While isolated CBD alone offers benefits, full spectrum CBD lotions really leverage the entourage effect. Their concentrate contains additional cannabis compounds like CBN, CBG, terpenes, flavonoids and low THC levels. Together, these components provide enhanced effects compared to isolated CBD.

Targeted CBD Lotions

Specialized CBD lotion formulas cater to different uses cases. For example:

  • Arthritis CBD lotions with pain-relieving ingredients like menthol and camphor
  • Nighttime CBD lotions with melatonin to improve sleep
  • Sensitive skin CBD lotions with extra moisturizers and no fragrances

Look for a targeted lotion aligned with your specific needs.

Factors to Consider When Choosing a CBD Lotion

With many options to choose from, here are the key factors to consider when selecting a CBD lotion:

Source of CBD

Seeking out high-quality CBD from either US-grown hemp or strains like sativa ensures purity and potency. Lotions containing full spectrum extracts offer maximum benefits. You also want CBD processed through clean methods like supercritical CO2 extraction, not solvents.

Additional Ingredients

Look at all the extra components alongside the CBD. Nourishing ingredients like plant oils enhance hydration and absorption while compounds like arnica, ginger and turmeric magnify therapeutic effects. Essential oils also promote harmony. However, beware harsh additives.

Testing and Compliance

Reputable CBD lotion brands conform with regulations and third-party lab test for quality and purity. Request recent Certificates of Analysis before buying. Discerning suppliers also explain test results clearly on packaging.

Application Method

Assess the application method – do you prefer squeezing lotion from a bottle or rolling on from a ball? Consider experience too. For example, gels absorb quickly without residue. Creams tend to be thicker but more hydrating. Balms usually use beeswax for an occlusive barrier helping seal in moisture.


Some enjoy the aromatherapy aspect of scented lotions while those with sensitivities or allergies avoid them. Luckily, quality unscented lotions let everyone experience benefits. Take personal preference into account.

Evaluating these aspects will guide you to the ideal CBD lotion.

How to Use CBD Lotion For Best Results

Using CBD lotion properly ensures you reap the compound’s full benefits. Follow these research-backed tips:

Clean the Area

Wash and dry the skin where you will apply the CBD lotion to remove dirt, sweat or product buildup. This clears the area for maximum absorption.

Apply Generously

Use enough CBD lotion to cover the intended area without fully rubbing it in. This saturation ensures thorough delivery to all layers of skin. Reapply as needed.

Massage Gently

Gently massage the CBD lotion into your skin using small circles. Take care not to scrub harshly. This stimulation helps absorption while relaxing muscle tension.

Allow Time to Absorb

Leave the CBD lotion on for at least 5 minutes before dressing to give the compounds time to fully absorb. You may apply a bandage over ointments.

Track Effects

Notice how long the benefits in pain relief, relaxation or skin comfort last after each application. This allows you to gauge frequency needed – once a day, every few hours, etc.

Following these guidelines when applying yields reliable results. Check packaging for any specific use recommendations too.

Answering Common Questions About CBD Lotion

Many wonder if CBD lotion will get them high or show up on a drug test. Here we answer those and other frequently asked questions.

Will CBD Lotion Make Me High?

No, CBD lotion should not cause any intoxicating effects. As discussed earlier, most CBD today comes from legal hemp not marijuana. And brands further process CBD to isolate it from any residual THC. Trace THC intakes from hemp are not enough to be psychoactive. Of course, do check labeling to confirm THC content under 0.3% first.

Can Using CBD Lotion Make Me Fail a Drug Test?

Pure isolated CBD will not cause failed drug tests. However full spectrum CBD products contain slight traces of THC stemming from the hemp plant itself. Though minute, extended heavy use may potentially build up enough THC metabolites to trigger a positive. But this would require consistent, high dosage without time for it to clear your system. To be safe, ask your employer or testing coordinator if topical CBD use may impact results.

How Fast Does CBD Lotion Work?

Unlike digesting CBD edibles, lotions enable the compound to directly reach target areas quickly. Most experience desired effects within 15 to 30 minutes after massaging CBD lotion into the skin. However, variables like your biology, concentration/quality of CBD and severity of condition impact onset times.

How Long Does CBD Lotion Last?

Applied CBD lotion lasts 4 to 6 hours on average based on studies. Larger body areas like the back or thighs help extend duration while smaller locations like hands and wrists metabolize CBD faster. Reapply as the initial soothing effects wear off, usually noticing when symptoms reemerge.

Is CBD Lotion Safe For Children and Pets?

In moderate amounts for mild issues, CBD lotion can be safe for older children and pets when following packaging directions. However, always consult a doctor or veterinarian first. Avoid giving CBD lotion to very young or pregnant kids and pets as research on effects is still limited. Start with minimal applications to monitor reactions.

Does CBD Lotion Expire?

Like any product, CBD lotion’s stability and potency slowly diminishes over time. Typical shelf life falls between 14-24 months. Look for an expiration date on packaging and discard bottles after this timeframe. Also note some ingredients like vitamin E oil can accelerate spoilage, shortening lifespan to 6-12 months. Refrigeration helps prolong freshness.

Can You Fly With CBD Lotion?

Traveling domestically within the U.S. with FDA-approved over the counter CBD topicals is legal per TSA guidelines. This includes reputable CBD lotions derived from hemp. Know product details like the milligrams and ingredients in case asked. When traveling internationally, check respective nation rules around legal status of CBD products first.

Why Does CBD Lotion Feel Cold?

Some CBD lotions and balms leverage natural compounds that provide a cooling effect upon application. Ingredients like menthol and peppermint extracts trick receptors into sensing cooler temperatures. This offers additional relief for sore areas and playing into the entourage effect of full spectrum cannabinoids. However, soothing CBD benefits still occur without cooling agents present.

How Much CBD Lotion Should I Use?

Most CBD lotion labels provide general usage recommendations based on testing. For reference, 20-40mg of applied CBD offers sufficient relief for many moderate issues in one area. Increase amount or frequency for acute pain and inflammation. Also match potency to condition – mild needs warrant lower doses than chronic joint pain for example. Gradually experiment to find your optimal dosage.


Research continues to reveal encouraging therapeutic results around using CBD in topical skin care applications. CBD lotion uniquely bridges the benefits of CBD itself with the moisturizing properties of lotions.

When massaged into the skin, CBD lotion may help reduce pain and inflammation, support skin health issues, provide mental relaxation, and more based on studies. Choosing high quality lotions optimized for your needs can provide targeted relief.