Cannabis innovators are always coming up with new ways to consume the plant, demonstrating that there is more than one way to enjoy cannabis.
New strains of cannabis are becoming increasingly available to adult users, which is proving that the “high” often associated with marijuana is not necessary. This has helped make marijuana more mainstream and introduced cannabis to a whole new group of consumers who might never have found it otherwise.
Cannabis topicals are a perfect example of how new ways of consuming marijuana can reshape people’s perception of the drug, highlighting its convenience, accessibility, and versatility.
By learning more about cannabis topicals, newcomers and experienced users alike can open up a whole new world of exploration. You never know; you might find that using topical cannabis is the key to achieving your sense of well-being.
In this exploration, we will take a comprehensive look at topical cannabis products- what they are constituted of, how they’re manufactured, and the reasoning behind why you might want to use them daily.
What are Cannabis Topicals?
A topical is any product meant to be applied directly to a certain area of the body; “topical administration” refers to applying said product onto the surface of skin (or, in some cases, mucous membranes).
In other words, cannabis topicals are a type of products you can apply to your skin that have been infused with cannabis oil. There is quite a selection when it comes to topical cannabis, including oils, lotions, balms, sprays–you name it.
You can find varying levels of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), cannabidiol (CBD), and other cannabinoids in products, as well as essential oils, natural botanicals, and added ingredients. For example, many souche-specific topicals focus on capturing a full spectrum of terpenes and cannabinoids to recreate the experience associated with consuming popular strains such as ‘Zkittles’ or “Chemdog.’
How are cannabis topicals made?
The basic formula for making cannabis topicals generally remains the same, though there is a vast array of methods:
- The manufacturer first creates the base of the topical. The base often consists of beeswax, cocoa butter, and shea butter.
- Then, the cannabis oil is added.
- Lastly, we mix in any necessary essential oils or botanical extracts and blend all ingredients until combined.
The eventual outcome is a productsuch as creams or patches, for example, that have been infused with cannabis.
How Do Cannabis-Infused Topicals Work?
We often get asked if topical cannabis will make the user high. It’s a great question and one that many consumers are confused about. Although, when you understand how your body processes compounds in cannabis versus how it absorbs other topicals, the answer becomes much clearer.
The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is vital to many functions in the human body, such as mood and appetite regulation, pain management, etc. The cannabinoids found in cannabis plants – THC and CBD – can interact with this system. In addition, our bodies produce their own cannabinoid compounds called endocannabinoids.
The Endocannabinoid System (ECS) is a hot topic in the world of cannabis right now. Your ECS helps maintain homeostasis throughout your body and coordinates many different functions including pain, inflammation, mood, sleep, and appetite. The two main endocannabinoids are anandamide (AEA) and 2-arachidonoylglycerol (2-AG). Both THC and CBD interact with specific receptors in the endocannabinoid system known as CB1 and CB2 receptors.
What does this mean for how effective cannabis-infused topicals are?
A small amount of THC is able to travel into the bloodstream when a topical cannabis product is applied to the skin. However, this process happens slowly and most people don’t experience any mental effects from it. The THC binds to CB1 receptors that are in the skin, muscles, and nerves in the area.
The one exception to this is the transdermal cannabis patch, which bypasses cannabinoid metabolism in the liver for more efficient absorption into the bloodstream. So if a high THC product is used, then some psychoactive effects are possible. But don’t worry, these kinds of products are usually clearly labeled so you won’t accidentally buy one.
Types of Cannabis Topicals
With so many types of CBD topicals on the market, it can be tough to decide which one is right for you. This guide will help you navigate the different kinds of products available and find something that fits your needs.
Below are some of the most popular cannabis-infused topicals, as well as a few of our personal favorite products.
Balms and salves
Cannabis balms are usually viscous and come with a stick applicator to prevent any messes. These products tend to be favored by individuals who want something to ease their pain and desire a product that can provide local relief for sore muscles or discomfort.
Attune’s Muscle Freeze is one of the most popular cannabis-infused balms on the market because it contains a 2:1 ratio THC to CBD. Our customers say that it has a cooling sensation that eases pain effectively, making it ideal for post-workout muscle soreness or chronic conditions.
Creams and lotions
Cannabis-based creams and lotions feel just like their non-cannabis counterparts that you’d purchase from any local store. People usually prefer using these products because they’re easy to apply, and many users say that cannabis body lotion helps with sensitive skin, itchiness, and other issues.
The Transdermal Pain Relieving Gel from Sanctuary Medicinals is a topical option composed of a silicone base and cannabis-infused gel that many consumers find provides rapid relief from pain. The formula also features menthol and essential oils to create soothing sensations on the targeted area.
Sprays are similar to other cannabis-based topicals, however they feature a thinner consistency that is designed for spray bottles. You can find different strains of cannabis in various sprays so you can match it to your cannabinoid needs.
Did you know that cannabis is becoming increasingly popular in the beauty industry, especially when it comes to skincare? In addition to healing cream and lotion for the body, a variety of facial cleansers, masks, and other products infused with cannabis are being sought after.
Transdermal patches are small and sticky, affixed to your skin to provide a slow and steady stream of medication over time. Cannabis-infused transdermal patches use marijuana extracts instead of the synthetic drugs you might get at a pharmacy.
Benefits of Topical Cannabis
You might be wondering: what do cannabis topicals actually do? Unfortunately, it’s hard to say how cannabis topicals will affect you because everyone experiences them differently. However, topical products offer their own unique benefits that can help with a variety of health goals.
Not only do cannabis topicals boast a variety of possible health benefits, but they also offer many other great advantages. Applied like any other lotion, balm, or cream, cannabis topicals are user-friendly for even first-time consumers. And because they come in such familiar product forms, pot topicals can feel less scary. They’re also easy to take with you on the go and have THC infused options that don’t cause intoxication effects – which is a total pro for lots of people.
How to Choose the Right Marijuana Topical to Suit Your Needs
You’re almost done taking the necessary steps to improve your wellbeing with cannabis topicals, but before you run to the nearest dispensary, take a read through these tips so you’ll know exactly what to look for!
Have a clear idea of your goals and preferences
First, ask yourself: what are you hoping to get out of the “perfect” topical? Are you aiming for pain relief, skincare, or another goal? When you can articulate your purpose for the topical, it will be easier to eliminate options that don’t fit.
Also, think about your personal preferences and how they might affect your topical experience. You want to make sure you invest in a topical that you’ll actually want to use, not one that becomes a hassle.
Trust a reputable dispensary
If you “Google” ‘where to buy the best topicals’, thousands of options will come up. However, it’s vital that you only purchase from a dispensary that is trustworthy and known for selling excellent quality products. Then you can shop without any worries!
We’ve only selected the best topicals and products at Canna Provisions Group that we would recommend to our loved ones. Our focus isn’t just on making a sale; rather, we want our customers to feel confident as they strive for their ideal cannabis experience.
Be open to trying a few options
Trying out new things can be a little tricky, and that goes for skincare products too. But don’t give up hope if you don’t like the first one you try! It might just take some trial-and-error before finding the perfect fit for you. More often than not, people have to go through several options before they find one that completely meets their needs.