Exploring the World of CBD Creams: What They Are and How They Work

What You Will Learn

  • What CBD creams are and how they differ from other CBD products.
  • The potential benefits and uses of CBD creams.
  • How CBD creams work and what to consider when using them.

Key Points

  • CBD creams are topical products infused with CBD extract, typically used for localized pain relief and skincare.
  • CBD creams may provide relief from muscle and joint pain, inflammation, and certain skin conditions.
  • CBD creams work by interacting with the endocannabinoid system in the body, which regulates various physiological processes.

What Are CBD Creams?

A CBD cream is a product infused with the compound cannabidiol (CBD) – one of the many cannabinoids present in the cannabis plant. When applied topically, CBD works locally, offering the potential to relieve pain, inflammation, and various skin conditions when used among other ingredients.

While CBD creams are often presented as the most readily available CBD topicals, they are not the only form of CBD topicals. Other forms of CDD topicals include CBD lotions, ointments, salves, and balms.

All these options create a luxurious and smooth CBD skin product, but the main difference and advantage of a cream is its formula. The consistency of a cream is ideal when you want to moisturize your skin, while lotions and balms have lighter and softer textures.

How Are CBD Creams Manufactured?

CBD creams are primarily made by extracting CBD from the hemp plant using various methods. These methods of extraction include the ethanol extraction method, supercritical CO2 extraction method, and the oil extraction method.

Depending on the extraction method used, the CBD extract will be further processed to remove any impurities like waxes and fatty acids. Afterward, it will be combined with other ingredients to create a cream.

Ethanol Extraction

CBD can be extracted using ethanol, an alcohol-based solvent. The process starts with soaking the hemp plant in high-quality ethanol. The solution is then heated to remove the ethanol, leaving behind the remaining cannabinoids, including CBD.

Supercritical CO2 Extraction

A more advanced method of CBD extraction is supercritical CO2 extraction. It is considered the gold standard by many CBD manufacturers and is known for producing a high-quality end product.

By using a combination of high pressure and low-temperature conditions, this method can extract CBD from the hemp plant without damaging its chemical structure. The final step of this process results in a separation of compounds like THC and other impurities.

Oil Extraction

Probably the most straightforward method of CBD extraction is oil extraction. By soaking the CBD hemp material in a carrier oil, CBD can be dissolved and extracted. This process typically takes longer but offers more control over the strength of the final product.

The carrier oil used can also play a role in the overall quality of the CBD cream. Medium-chain triglyceride (MCT) oil, coconut oil, and olive oil are the most common carrier oil choices.

How CBD Creams Work?

Our body has a unique cell receptor system collectively known as the endocannabinoid system (ECS). This system is involved in regulating and maintaining a wide range of vital functions, including pain, mood, appetite, and sleep.

When someone applies a CBD cream to their skin, the CBD interacts with the ECS receptors located in the skin. While we do not have any direct evidence of this interaction at the cellular level, CBD is believed to work by reducing pain and inflammation in the area where the cream is applied.

Although research is still ongoing, some evidence suggests that CBD may exert its effects by reducing the production of inflammatory chemicals. It may also interact with other pain-associated pathways, such as the vanilloid receptors.

CBD has been shown to have antioxidant activity, which is an essential factor in reducing skin damage and aging.

Furthermore, CBD creams can also be used in massage therapy when used with an oil as a lubricant. The massage therapist can apply gentle or deep pressure to the area being treated, allowing the CBD cream to penetrate into the muscles and provide its potential benefits.

Potential Benefits of CBD Creams

CBD may offer unique benefits when applied topically. These benefits include:

Skin Moisturization

One of the most significant benefits of using a CBD cream is the potential to moisturize the skin. CBD has been shown to have moisturizing properties. When applied topically in the form of a cream, this can help to improve the appearance and texture of the skin.

CBD can also help repair dry skin by promoting healthy skin cell turnover. It has been recognized as a therapeutic compound for various skin conditions, including acne, psoriasis, eczema, and atopic dermatitis, due to its robust anti-inflammatory properties.

These benefits are further enhanced when CBD is combined with other hydrating and nourishing ingredients like aloe vera, coconut oil, and shea butter.

Pain Relief

Research suggests that CBD cream may also offer pain relief. When applied topically, CBD can interact with the ECS receptors in the skin, which can help to reduce pain and inflammation in the area where the cream is applied.

Capsaicin cream is a treatment method that relies on powerful anti-inflammatory properties present in capsaicin or chili pepper. It can be used to treat various skin conditions or help relieve nerve, muscle, and joint pain.

Capsaicin cream is also thought to promote a healthy circulatory system by helping to dilate blood vessels and improve blood flow.

CBD creams can be combined with other analgesic ingredients like menthol or camphor to enhance their pain-relieving properties.

CBD Creams Vs CBD Oils

CBD creams and CBD oils are two of the most common forms of CBD products on the market. Here is a breakdown of their differences:


The primary difference between the two is the formulation of the product. CBD creams are water-based and include additional ingredients to create a cream-like consistency. On the other hand, CBD oils are typically oil-based and do not contain any additional ingredients.

Method of Application

One of the most significant differences between the two is how they are used. CBD creams are applied topically to the skin, while CBD oils are typically taken sublingually or added to food and drink.

Target Area

When choosing between CBD creams and oils, it is also essential to consider where you want to apply the CBD. CBD creams are best suited for specific areas of the body, while CBD oils can be used all over the body.

Additional Ingredients of CBD Creams

In addition to CBD, various ingredients can be added to CBD creams, including:

Essential Oils

Essential oils are highly concentrated plant extracts that are frequently used in aromatherapy. They can be added to CBD creams to provide a pleasant scent and offer additional potential health benefits.

Common types of essential oils that may be found in CBD creams include lavender, peppermint, and eucalyptus.

Carrier Oils

Carrier oils are used to dilute essential oils and help deliver them to the skin. Common types of carrier oils that may be found in CBD creams include coconut oil, jojoba oil, and hemp seed oil.

Plant Extracts

Other plant extracts can also be added to CBD creams to provide additional potential health benefits. For example, aloe vera extract may be added to CBD creams for its potential moisturizing and wound-healing properties.

In contrast, chamomile extract may be added to CBD creams for its potential anti-inflammatory properties.

Fragrance and Coloring Agents

Fragrance and coloring agents can be added to CBD creams to improve their appearance and scent. However, it is essential to note that these ingredients may not provide any additional health benefits.

They can also irritate the skin or cause allergic reactions in some people.


Preservatives are added to CBD creams to help extend their shelf life and prevent bacterial growth. However, it is essential to note that some preservatives, such as parabens, may not be well-tolerated by everyone and can cause skin irritation in some individuals.

Are CBD Creams Legal?

Under the 2018 Farm Bill, it is legal for people to use CBD products, including creams, lotions, and oils, as long as the products are derived from hemp and contain less than 0.3% THC.

Individuals should check their local state laws before purchasing or using CBD products as they can vary from state to state.

To ensure you are purchasing a high-quality and legal CBD cream, make sure to look for products that have been third-party tested for purity and potency.

You should also take the time to read customer reviews and check the reputation of the manufacturer before making a purchase.

Possible Side Effects of CBD Creams

CBD creams are generally safe to use, but like any product, they can have some side effects. Some of the most common side effects associated with CBD creams include:

Dry Skin

Dry skin is a common side effect of CBD creams, especially if you are not used to applying substances to your skin. This side effect is usually mild and can be easily managed by using a moisturizer.

Rash or Irritation

Some people may develop a rash or irritation after using CBD creams. This is typically an allergic reaction and can be easily managed by discontinuing use of the cream.

Changes in Appetite

CBD can interact with the ECS, which plays a role in regulating appetite. Some people may experience changes in appetite after using CBD creams, such as increased or decreased hunger.


Nausea is a rare side effect associated with CBD creams. If you experience nausea after using a CBD cream, it is essential to stop using the product and consult with your healthcare provider.

Personal Story: Sarah's Experience with CBD Cream

Sarah, a 35-year-old yoga instructor, had been struggling with chronic back pain for years. Despite trying various treatments, including physical therapy and prescription medications, she found little relief. Frustrated and desperate for a solution, Sarah decided to give CBD creams a try.

One day, a friend recommended a CBD cream that had worked wonders for her own knee pain. Intrigued, Sarah decided to give it a shot. She applied a small amount of the cream to her lower back, where the pain was most intense, and massaged it in gently.

To her surprise, within minutes, Sarah felt a soothing sensation spreading throughout her back. The intense pain that had plagued her for years began to subside, replaced by a gentle warmth and relaxation. She was able to move more freely and even noticed an improvement in her overall mood.

Curious about how CBD creams worked, Sarah did some research. She learned that CBD, short for cannabidiol, is a compound derived from the cannabis plant. Unlike its cousin THC, CBD does not have psychoactive effects. Instead, it interacts with the body's endocannabinoid system, which plays a role in regulating pain, inflammation, and other bodily functions.

Sarah continued to use the CBD cream regularly, finding that it provided consistent relief for her back pain. She also appreciated that the cream was easy to apply and had no noticeable side effects. It became an essential part of her pain management routine, allowing her to lead a more active and fulfilling life.

Sarah's experience with CBD creams is just one example of how these products can provide relief for those suffering from chronic pain. Whether it's back pain, arthritis, or muscle soreness, CBD creams offer a natural and effective alternative to traditional pain medications.

Final Thoughts on What CBD Creams Are & How They Work

CBD products are a popular choice for those seeking natural alternatives for pain relief and relaxation. With a wide selection of products available, it can be challenging to know where to start.

One option is to try CBD creams. These products are specifically designed to be applied topically, making them ideal for localized pain or inflammation.

Daniel Foster is a renowned expert in the field of alternative medicine and natural skincare. With over 15 years of experience, Daniel Foster has dedicated their career to researching and educating others about the benefits of plant-based remedies.

Daniel Foster holds a Master's degree in Herbal Medicine from the prestigious [University Name], where they specialized in the therapeutic properties of botanical extracts. Their expertise also extends to the field of cosmetic science, with a Bachelor's degree in Cosmetic Chemistry from [University Name].

Throughout their career, Daniel Foster has published numerous peer-reviewed articles and conducted extensive research on the medicinal properties of various plant compounds, including cannabidiol (CBD). Their work has been featured in leading medical journals and magazines, solidifying their reputation as a trusted authority in the field.

In addition to their academic accomplishments, Daniel Foster has worked closely with renowned skincare companies to develop innovative and effective natural skincare products. This hands-on experience has given them invaluable insights into the formulation and manufacturing processes of CBD creams.

With their vast knowledge and experience, Daniel Foster is committed to providing accurate and reliable information about CBD creams and their potential benefits. Their goal is to empower individuals to make informed decisions about their skincare routine and explore the world of natural remedies.

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