Move over, grapeseed oil: it looks like cannabis is shaping up to be the next trending skincare ingredient, and for good reason.
While some might be surprised to see pot extracts in beauty products, recent research shows that the same cannabinoid receptors located in the nervous system, gut, and reproductive organs in the body are also found on human skin cells.
These receptors, also known as CB1 and CB2 receptors, are binding locations for tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), cannabidiol (CBD), and other active compounds found in cannabis.
When infused skin creams or bath products are applied to the skin and react with the body's endocannabinoid system, change takes place on a cellular level—meaning that your skin actually becomes healthier, instead of just temporarily feeling softer.
Once applied, some topicals have been shown to help reduce inflammation, eliminate bacteria, and help regulate oil production. Cannabis is also rich in potent antioxidants.
Skincare products formulated with hemp have also shown to be effective, as both hemp and marijuana are rich in CBD.
With that, here are three B.C.-made products to try out next time you pop by your local dispensary.
Problem skin sucks year-round, but it's particularly annoying in the summertime. Enter MJ Creams, a local brand that produces salves and lotions made with only the best natural ingredients, and just the right amount of water-extracted marijuana resin and hemp seed oil.
Our favourite, the brand's SKIN cream, tackles tough issues like eczema, psoriasis, acne, rashes, sores, and bruises, without making skin oily. In addition to resin and hemp seed oil, essential oils like sunflower and jojoba are joined by extracts of comfrey and calendula to help provide relief for inflamed skin.
This unscented formula is free of psychoactive ingredients, is suitable for sensitive skin, and can even be used as a facial moisturizer. ($24.95 for 50 mL, available at these local dispensaries or www.mjcreams.ca)
If you can't escape for that weekend spa getaway you've been longing for, a soak in the comfort of your own tub might be the next best thing, especially with a little love from Cannalife Botanicals. This Squamish-based company specializes in creating topicals and other products that promote wellness, using only locally sourced, organic ingredients.
Its luxurious infused bath soaks and scrubs combine cannabis with aromatherapy salt blends to promote pain relief, detox, and cell rejuvenation, while invigorating the senses with scents like Passion (sandalwood, rose, ylang ylang, cardamom, jasmine, ginger), Calm (cedarwood, vanilla), Relieve (rosemary, peppermint, lavender), and Elevate (eucalyptus, geranium, bergamot).
Okay, we're a bit ahead of the curve on this one: samples of this yet-to-be-released hand lotion landed in our mailbox a few weeks ago, and we've been using it non-stop ever since. Formulated with hemp seed oil, Vellum Wellness's Elevate lotion is loaded with Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids for a product that balances oiliness while it nourishes.
Founders Sarah and Christina Kaur formulated the product over the course of one year, working with local manufactures to create a gender-neutral hemp-based hand cream that keeps you moisturized "between the joints"—a slogan they've adopted that can certainly be applied in more ways than one. This rich yet balanced cream isn't heavy or sticky, and won't leave your hands feeling greasy after application.
Hemp's naturally earthy smell is complimented by mandarin oil for a light scent that won't compete with your perfume or cologne. (Set to launch this summer; sign up to receive your free sample at www.vellumwellness.com)