What are CBD serums?
Serums are among the lightest and highest-concentration products in a skincare routine. Their formulation allows the skin to absorb as many active ingredients as possible. Also, they’re supposed to leave little to no residue on the skin.
Just because serums are easily absorbed doesn’t mean they only come as water-soluble products. We also have oil and gel serums.
Most of the time, people add CBD serums into their skincare routines to help address different issues. For example, we have serums with anti-ageing properties, some prevent acne and other skin conditions, and others help brighten the skin－Their specialisation is why they cost more than other skincare products.
Indeed, we have hundreds or even thousands of CBD serums on the market. However, they all fall into three major categories:
Full-spectrum CBD Serums: They are the most popular and often referred to as “raw CBD serums.” This is because their CBD extracts are unprocessed. Therefore, besides CBD, they also contain other cannabinoids, terpenes, flavonoids, and THC traces (No more than 0.2%). According to most experts and users, full-spectrum CBD serums are the most effective because of the “Entourage Effect.” It states that CBD tends to work better with other hemp compounds.
Broad-spectrum CBD Serums: They are the second favourites, with compositions similar to full-spectrum CBD serums. They contain CBD, other cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids. However, they lack THC. For that reason, broad-spectrum CBD serums appeal to those who are sensitive to THC but still want to experience the “Entourage Effect.”
Isolate CBD Serums: One might argue they are the least favourite. However, they have recently gotten more users. Isolate CBD Serums are also the “purest.” They only contain the CBD cannabinoid and nothing else (No other cannabinoids, terpenes, flavonoids, and THC). Because they lack the “Entourage Effect,” people claim they are less effective. You’ll have to use large amounts of CBD isolate skincare products to get solid results.
CBD’s skincare benefits
We understand that people are sceptical about CBD’s skincare benefits. While they have good reason to be, they can’t ignore “the CBD uproar.”
Millions of experts and users who have used CBD skincare products swear on their benefits. Even though it’s a relatively new ingredient, it shows much promise.
CBD relates to our bodies’ Endocannabinoid Systems (ECS)－These systems form the Network of Endocannabinoids.
Endocannabinoids are our “internal cannabinoids” that have similar structures to hemp’s cannabidiol (CBD).
When we apply CBD skincare products, the skin absorbs CBD into the bloodstream.
From there, it stimulates the function of our “internal cannabinoids.” This increases the efficacy of the Network of Endocannabinoids that affect our skin’s oil production, pigmentation, and hydration, among other factors.
Below are some approved studies that support these claims:
Skin oil production: A 2014 study revealed that CBD might affect sebocytes－The skin cells producing sebum. Sebum overproduction is often behind the occurrence of skin blemishes like acne.
Hydration: Another 2009 study showed that CBD might have hydrating properties that help keep the skin moist and supple.
Chronic inflammation and free radicals are the primary causes of ageing signs and skin blemishes like acne and other disorders.
Free radicals are harmful substances from our environment, including cigarette smoke, ozone, industrial chemicals, and air pollutants. They infiltrate the body, harm cells, and can even cause DNA damage.
Inflammation isn’t always a bad thing－It’s the body’s reaction against disease-causing organisms and other harmful substances. However, its overstimulation is bad and will cause chronic inflammation. Chronic inflammation damages your skin’s healthy cells and tissues. In the worst case, it can even cause lethal diseases like cancer.
Fortunately, CBD extract has high antioxidant activity. Antioxidants are crucial against free radicals and inflammation－This is why CBD serums are ideal for fighting against ageing signs like fine lines and wrinkles.
Other ingredients in CBD serums
Like other CBD skincare products, serums also contain other ingredients besides CBD. It’s these ingredients that support and amplify CBD’s benefits.
Below are some of the common ingredients in CBD serums:
Kakadu Plum Extract: It’s a natural soother than helps relieve skin sensitivity.
Chia Seed CO2 Extract: It has soothing properties that promote soft, silky, and healthy-looking skin.
Cucumber Extract: Cucumber is an all-time skincare favourite known for its moisturising and softening properties.
Safflower Oil: It’s famous in the skincare industry because of its high linoleic acid concentration. The oil extract has wound-healing capabilities that improve the skin’s barrier. On top of that, it also has skin-brightening effects.
Sunflower Oil: It’s an emollient rich in vitamins and fatty acids, including vitamins A, C, D, and E. It helps the skin retain moisture. Additionally, it has high antioxidant activity. Antioxidants help fight inflammation and free radicals that cause ageing signs like fine lines and wrinkles.
Pomegranate Oil: It’s an anti-ageing ingredient rich in powerful antioxidants like polyphenols.
Sandalwood Oil: Another antioxidant famous for its use in ancient medicinal practices.
Baobab Oil: Experts worldwide have approved its skincare benefits. Baobab oil is a master moisturising agent with rejuvenating properties.
Red Maple Bark Extract: It does it all. Not only does it contain antioxidants that fight radicals and inflammation, but it also stimulates skin renewal and improves complexion. It’s among the strongest organic anti-ageing skincare ingredients.
Aloe Vera: A gel ingredient with expert moisturising and anti-inflammatory properties. It’s a good soother for wounds and irritation.
Honey: This sweet ingredient is also kind to the skin. It has moisturising, healing, and anti-inflammatory compounds that keep the skin hydrated, smooth, and young-looking. A recent 2017 review revealed that honey helps treat burns and wounds.
Tea Tree Oil: Like other tea herbs, this one is rich in antioxidants that can help fight ageing signs like fine lines and wrinkles. In other studies, it has shown to be effective against acne and other skin blemishes. It specifically worked well on subjects with mild to moderate acne.
Vitamin C: It’s among the most efficient ingredients that can fight against fine lines and wrinkles. Additionally, it helps deal with irregular age spots and excessive skin pigmentation.
Hyaluronic Acid: It’s a skincare skin ingredient that we naturally have in our skin. However, its production quantity and quality tend to decline as we age. Hyaluronic acid can impressively hold up to 1000 times its weight in water, making it an ideal moisturiser. Additionally, it also has extraordinary smoothing and anti-ageing effects.
Prebiotics and probiotics: These are unique compounds that help the skin maintain its “good bacteria” concentration. Additionally, prebiotics and probiotics collaborate to protect the skin from harmful environmental factors that can lead to acne breakouts, sensitivity, and dryness.
Types of CBD serums
You don’t just go for any serum available on the market. You have to find one that matches your needs. Below is a list of the different types of serums addressing several issues.
Skin brightening serums: These serums are often rich in pigment-fighting ingredients. Additionally, they should also contain considerable antioxidant content. Some of the best ingredients that improve skin tone include vitamin C, glycolic acid, kojic acid, ferulic acid, and mushroom extracts.
Hydrating serums: Hyaluronic acid is the most popular ingredient for hydrating serums. Also, you want products that contain other moisturising ingredients like vitamin B5, aloe vera, and honey.
Sensitive skin serums: They are usually gentle yet effective. It’s always best to go for products with plant-based ingredients since they are less likely to trigger unwanted reactions. The most popular ones for sensitive skin serums include salicylic acid and niacinamide. These ingredients can also work for acne-prone skin. They can help remove dead cells that block pores and trigger acne breakouts.
Anti-ageing serums: They are easily the most popular type of serum. The most effective anti-ageing serums contain several ingredients with high antioxidant activity. Antioxidants help fight inflammation and free radicals－The notorious causes of fine lines and wrinkles. Other famous ingredients are resveratrol, retinol, and vitamins C, A, and E.
Skin texture serums: These help boost your skin’s general appearance and feel. If you want smooth and soft skin, you should look for products with ingredients like glycolic acid serum－It’s a powerful exfoliating agent that removes dead cells and wrinkles and can also hydrate the skin for a more youthful appearance.
Hemp Seed Oil in CBD Serums
Hemp Seed Oil is another ingredient in CBD skincare products like serums. It’s important to note that “Hemp Seed Oil” is different from “Hemp Oil.”
“Hemp Oil” is an ingredient that contains CBD extract and Hemp Seed Oil. However, “Hemp Seed Oil” doesn’t have any traces of CBD.
Note: It’s important to differentiate the two because there are some brands that sell Hemp Seed Oil serums as CBD serums. Even though they also come with potential skincare benefits, you’ll not experience CBD’s effects. It’s always good to get your money’s worth. Remember, CBD has more impactful anti-inflammatory effects than hemp seed oil.
Nevertheless, most CBD serums have both CBD extracts and hemp seed oils. You get to benefit from both hemp compounds.
Below are some of Hemp Seed’s skincare benefits:
It’s a powerful moisturising agent: Even though hemp seed oil lacks CBD, it’s rich in omega fatty acids 6 and 9－These are crucial elements that help repair the skin’s outermost barrier that seals in moisture and prevents dehydration. Additionally, hemp seed oil is a potent humectant－A substance that draws moisture into the skin.
It has anti-inflammatory compounds: Like CBD, hemp seed oil can also help fight against free radicals and hyper-inflammation－The two main causes of lines, wrinkles, and skin blemishes. Unlike CBD, rich in antioxidants, hemp seed oil contains unique fatty acids with anti-inflammatory properties. Most brands tend to use it with retinol, another ingredient that’s effective against free radicals.
It’s a soother with anti-acne properties: All elements in hemp seed oil help promote smooth and blemish-free skin. Like CBD, hemp seed oil also affects the skin cells responsible for oil production. Therefore, it can help fight acne.
CBD Serum Shopping Tips
The market is overflowing with hundreds of CBD serums from different brands. Unfortunately, the CBD industry isn’t as regulated as pharmaceutical drugs and food. Therefore, unscrupulous companies can get away with many false dealings. Some even sell overpriced “CBD products” that don’t have any traces of CBD extract. You might even buy skincare products with harmful ingredients that destroy your skin.
Even though there is no sure way to steer off such brands, below are a few tips that will help you while shopping for safe and effective CBD serums.
Third-party testing: Before anything, check if the brand does third-party independent testing for its CBD products. Also, it must have the Certificates of Analysis on its official website. Third-party testing is crucial because it gives more information about the product’s composition. You’ll know the CBD concentration and other ingredients present in the formulation.
Hemp source: Only deal with brands that source CBD extracts from UK, US, or EU-cultivated hemp plants. The Industrial Hemp Plant is versatile and can grow in any region. While that might be a good thing, it’s also a highly absorbent plant that takes in everything around it, including heavy metals, herbicides, and pesticides. These substances can be detrimental if they end up on your skin. Therefore, you are better off with CBD extracts from countries that heavily regulate hemp cultivation.
Read the ingredients list: You should also read through the product’s ingredient list. Ensure it contains “CBD Extract” and any other ingredients that will help address your condition. It’s always best to stick to brands that use organic non-GMO ingredients. They are less likely to trigger negative reactions. Reading through the ingredients list will also help if you are a vegan or vegetarian. Some experts emphasise that with CBD products, you should look beyond CBD. Even if the CBD concentration is high, if the other products are harmful or ineffective, you’ll experience little to no benefits.
Check the brand’s reputation: Only buy CBD products from brands with good reputations. It’s important because good customer reviews affirm that the products work and won’t harm your skin. Sites like Trustpilot can help you with this.
CBD Serum FAQs
What is skincare?
The term “skincare” has many meanings. It often refers to the daily duty of taking care of the skin. Not only by using skincare products but also through diet. For others, it means using specific skincare products to help manage skin conditions and disorders.
Whatever the meaning, all people have one goal in mind－To have smooth, youthful, and glowing skin.
What is CBD?
CBD refers to cannabidiol. It’s an organic compound in industrial hemp plants and falls under the cannabinoid category (There are over 100 cannabinoids in the hemp plant).
The hemp plant is a variant of Cannabis sativa. When people hear the term “cannabis,” they immediately think of the “highness” effect. However, we’ll have you know that CBD isn’t psychoactive and can’t cause “highness.”
Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) is the Cannabis compound responsible for the “highness” effect impairing cognitive function. There are few THC traces in the Industrial Hemp Plant. However, it’s abundant in Marijuana (The most popular Cannabis sativa variant).
CBD products are only legal in the UK if they contain less than 0.2% THC.
What are CBD moisturisers?
CBD moisturisers are heavier and thicker. They often come as creams with higher oil concentrations than water content.
They must be thick and heavy to create a physical barrier over your skin. The barrier seals in moisture and keeps the skin hydrated throughout the day. Besides that, CBD moisturisers enhance the stratum corneum (The skin’s outer layer).
Even though moisturisers mainly focus on skin hydration, they can also possess other ingredients with anti-ageing properties and other effects.
What are the differences between serums and moisturisers?
The difference in formulations is usually the first to stand out. As hinted earlier, CBD moisturisers have a higher oil to water ratio than serums. Therefore, they are thicker and heavier. It’s why moisturisers often come as creams, whereas most serums are water-based. The skin finds it easier to absorb serum ingredients.
Functionality is perhaps the reason behind their difference in formulation. Serums contain high concentrations of active ingredients that must penetrate the skin to exert their effects. On the hand, most of the moisturiser’s work is on the skin’s surface. That said, the skin still absorbs some moisturiser ingredients.
If you are looking for quicker effects, you are better of with a suitable serum. Meanwhile, a CBD moisturiser is your best pick if you want a hydrating product that locks in moisture.
Note: If you have oily skin, moisturisers can be overwhelming. Consider hydrating serums. Some can deliver hydrating ingredients without suffocating your skin.
Can I use CBD serums and moisturisers together?
Yes. You can have a serum and moisturiser in your skincare routine. Nonetheless, it’s often recommended for people with dry skin. The serum will deliver active hydrating ingredients as the moisturiser locks them in and prevents moisture from escaping.
You must be careful if you have oily or normal skin and want to use serums to improve skin health. Experts advise you to avoid oil-based serums. Instead, look for water-based serums that the skin can easily absorb. That way, you won’t suffocate your skin when you apply a moisturiser.
How do I layer CBD serums and moisturisers?
Order is a big deal in skincare routines. Generally, you want to apply the thinnest to the thickest products. The skin can easily absorb the ingredients from the finer skincare products before the thick ones wrap things up.
Most serums and moisturisers a good for use in morning and evening skincare routines. However, there are some serums you must not apply during your morning routine－Be on the lookout for serums that contain retinol. It’s a substance that will increase your skin’s sensitivity to the sun. Therefore, it’s not ideal during the day.
Apply your CBD serum after cleansing and toning (exfoliating). Afterwards, you can seal everything with a moisturiser. For maximum effectiveness, remember to wait at least 60 seconds for the skin to absorb the serum.
At what age should you use CBD serums?
All CBD products have an 18-year-old age restriction. Nonetheless, CBD or not, experts advise users to keep off serums until they are in their early or mid-twenties. This is because serums are high-concentrated and might disrupt young skin composition. However, as we get older, the skin becomes drier, and we can use serums to maintain healthy hydration levels.
What’s better, CBD serums or toners?
You can’t compare the two because they perform different functions. CBD serums deliver crucial ingredients into the skin. On the other hand, toners are more of cleaning agents. They help remove stubborn dirt that stays behind after the cleansing process. Nonetheless, we have toners with additional functions like restoring the skin’s lost healthy oils and balancing skin pH levels.
What are the side effects of CBD serums?
Despite being in the markets for years, quality CBD serums have rarely triggered side effects. Nonetheless, be careful. Consult your dermatologist before using any CBD skincare products (This is crucial advice for those with sensitive skin).
Note: Always test a new skincare product before going all out. Take a small amount and apply it to a spot on your hard. Wait for about an hour. Don’t use the product if it triggers negative reactions like swelling and itchiness. If nothing happens, then you are good to go.