Learn the most important qualities of an effective anti aging skin care product, the differences between hemp and marijuana-based beauty products, and how you don’t need to undergo dangerous procedures to prevent and reverse signs of aging.
A lot of factors determine how our aging process is going to go. Genetics, diet, lifestyle, environment, even everyday habits can all contribute to how people respond to us at our 20-year reunion. The anti-aging market is projected to reach a whopping $216.52 billion by 2021, and between Botox, cellulite treatments, stretch mark creams and night serums that promise radiant youth, who knows what works, what doesn’t, and what is even safe enough to try? In light of this new era where medical marijuana is being legalized and accepted rapidly across the nation, researchers have been working harder than ever to find the best way to use cannabis – particularly CBD from cannabis – in the fight against aging. But is it safe, is it effective, and how does it compare to other anti aging skin care products?
It’s easy to want to run to the dermatologist for your monthly chemical peel every time your skin starts to look and feel dull. But what do you do in between appointments to keep your skin youthful and healthy? What can you do if you decide you want to skip on the clinical procedures and take things into your own hands? A daily skin care regimen is essential if you really want to maximize your anti aging efforts, but it is even more effective if you are working with the right tools. There are hundreds of products on the market today that make impressive claims, and it’s easy to be duped into spending tons of cash on products or procedures that don’t live up to their expectations. Additionally, many products are full of fillers, perfumes, and harsh chemicals that actually do more long-term damage than good. Popular products on the shelves today are typically formulated to accomplish only a handful of tasks at a time, which means most of us end up buying multiple products that only partially work.
The good news? You can take the guesswork out of finding a product that you know will work by breaking it down to six criteria:
Cannabis products are taking over the skincare industry by a storm, treating anything from acne to eczema to cellulite to varicose veins. So what is CBD and how does it rate in anti aging?
Putting CBD To The Test
Cannabis is an herb that contains hundreds of chemical compounds that each perform different tasks. Many of these compounds have powerful medicinal and therapeutic properties not found naturally in any other living thing, and one of these compounds shines extra bright in the anti aging world: cannabidiol. Cannabidiol, better known as CBD, is a sticky, resinous substance that can be found in tiny glands all over the stalk, leaves, and flowers of the cannabis plant. While many cannabis plants will contain some percentage of CBD, growers have hybridized and bred certain strains to produce high amounts of CBD in order to make extractions more pure and potent. This resin containing CBD can be extracted from the plant a variety of ways, but often the method used is one similar to making vanilla extract – yes, the kind you have in your kitchen cupboard. When the extraction process is complete, you are left with a high concentration of CBD in a thick, sticky, “oil-like” form. This oil is then used as an active ingredient in topical creams, serums, and ointments for skin and body care. But how effective is it, and does it pass the criteria as an anti aging skin care product?
Criteria 1: The anti aging product should be loaded with antioxidants
We hear a lot about antioxidants and free radicals in skin care. But what does it all actually mean? Free radicals can cause damage to our healthy cells through oxidation. This happens when free radicals use healthy cells as a host, and rids of the healthy cells ability to work in a normal way. It is impossible to counteract free radicals: they come from things like pollution when we breathe in, smog, UV rays, alcohol, tobacco, and food. Your best defense? Antioxidants. Antioxidants are extremely powerful and can cause a halt to damage done by free radicals on the skin cells. Think of it this way: leaving an apple sitting out, it turns brown – this is known as oxidation. Ascorbic acid that can be found in citrus fruits and is a powerful antioxidant, meaning that it can actually put a hault to oxidation. Antioxidants work on your skin in a similar fashion: cannabidiol itself is a more potent antioxidant than ascorbic acid. In fact, it’s so impressive that the U.S. government patented it as just that in 1999, stating:
The antioxidant strength of CBD is significantly greater than that of either Vitamin C or Vitamin E.
Criteria 2: The anti aging product should be moisturizing
What’s the best way to plump up sad, saggy, aging skin? Moisture, of course. Even if you aren’t quite showing signs of aging, a quality moisturizer is absolutely essential in the race against time. You may have noticed that many beauty products and cosmetics are now made with hemp seed oil. This is because hemp seed carries a perfect 3:1 ratio of Omega 3 and Omega 6, two of the most useful Essential Fatty Acids (EFA) found in most quality anti aging moisturizers. Cannabidiol also happens to be chock full of Omega 3 and 6, both important components of cell membranes on the skin and throughout the body. These EFAs increase the production of collagen in the skin, which is what keeps your skin firm and healthy. They also help keep the skin moisturized by creating a physical barrier on the epidermis, which decreases the amount of water lost through the top layer of the skin. With the added moisture retention and extra collagen production, the skin will look and feel younger, smoother, and healthier.
Criteria 3: The anti aging product should encourage cell turnover
Nothing ages us faster than the slowing down of skin cell turnover. When we are young, our skin cells slough off and rejuvenate at a healthy, rapid pace. As we age, the process slows down, which makes dead skin cells linger on our face and body longer than they should. When these dead and dying skin cells hang out like that, they can accumulate into the natural lines on our skin, encouraging deeper wrinkles. Dead skin cells also make our skin appear dull and lifeless: this is why exfoliation is such an important key in any skin care regimen. CBD is used to treat skin conditions like psoriasis because it can balance out dysfunctional cell turnover and repair damaged skin cells. To make the most out of your topical CBD cream, exfoliate your skin first with a gentle sugar or salt scrub. This removes most of the loose dead cells and allows the cream to penetrate young, living cells and encourage their growth.
Criteria 4: The anti aging product should be an anti-inflammatory
What does inflammation have to do with aging? Let’s go back to free radicals: as free radicals cause oxidative stress and damage, the body will try to compensate and heal this by activating an inflammatory response, which causes more stress to the skin. This doesn’t only just occur in damaged cells, either: many times the inflammation will spread to surrounding healthy tissue. This type of inflammation degrades elastin and collagen, the two proteins your skin relies on to stay firm and free of lines and wrinkles. So how does cannabidiol grade in inflammation? Studies continuously show the remarkable anti-inflammatory effects of CBD in muscles, joints, the brain, and – you guessed it – on the skin.
Criteria 5: The anti aging product should have little to no side effects or downtime
Risk factors are a big concern for most people when considering the use of any cannabis product for health, diet, or beauty. Anti-marijuana propaganda has been around since the plant was first introduced to America by Mexican immigrants in the early 1900’s, and many false claims have been made about the dangers of using it. The truth of the matter is, marijuana has not been linked to any injuries or death. There is more downtime and recovery required after getting a chemical peel or a waxing treatment than there is with using cannabidiol. Marijuana is an herb that can have psychotropic properties when inhaled, however, the plant itself is not toxic or harmful. Cannabidiol, in particular, has no known serious side effects. Poor reactions to cannabinoids are rare, although it is possible to be sensitive or allergic to compounds found in cannabis. It’s recommended to do an allergy test before you begin use (this applies to any new skin care product or regimen). To conduct an at-home allergy test, rub a small amount of product onto a clean, quarter sized area inside the crease of your elbow. Leave it for 24 hours. If the skin appears irritated at all, do not use the product any further. If it looks and feels fine, you’re good to go!
Criteria 6: The anti aging product should be powerful and effective, but gentle and safe
Many anti aging products meant for face and body are too strong for the sensitive skin around your eyes and mouth. The skin there is thin, fragile, and more prone to burning, scarring, and hyperpigmentation. As luck would have it, they are also the areas that collect the most fine lines and wrinkles, and shouldn’t be left untreated. Kind of like asking for a tiny tattoo with a lot of detail, finding an anti aging skin care product that is potent enough to be effective but gentle enough to use daily and on sensitive areas can be a lot to ask for. But it’s not impossible: cannabidiol not only passes the anti aging product criteria with flying colors, but it has been proven time and time again to be gentle and safe. It doesn’t contain properties that burn the skin, exfoliate tissue, or cause discoloration of any kind, so your eyes and lips (and other sensitive areas) are safe.
An added bonus to cannabidiol in anti aging skin care is its ability to act as a natural sunscreen. Of course, it won’t be SPF 50 so always be aware of your skin when it is exposed to direct sunlight. However, thanks to the UV fighting antioxidants and Omega 3s found in CBD, it has the added power of preventing damage and premature aging from sun exposure.
5 Surprising Ways CBD Can Keep Your Mind And Body Young
Think cannabidiol only helps fight aging from the outside? Think again. Cannabidiol interacts with a system in our body known as an endocannabinoid system (ECS). This system can be proven to be necessary to us as it is responsible for how we sleep, when we’re hungry and our mood among others. We create cannabinoids in so that our body keeps functioning in a normal matter. If our ECS is disrupted as a result of weak endocannabinoid creation, it can cause an imbalance of the immune system, which can cause disease and make us thoroughly ill in general. CBD can help to keep the ECS at a normal standard which will in turn improve our health. We have added 5 methods of how this is possible:
Check out other things cannabidiol can do for your skin: “CBD Body Lotion as a Long-Term Skin Health Remedy.”
Is CBD Skin Care Legal?
Possibly the most frequently asked question when it comes to any product made with cannabis is, “is it legal?” Marijuana regulations are changing all the time, and no one wants to get in trouble with the law for buying a face cream. To make things even more complicated, the market is flooded with both “hemp CBD” and “marijuana CBD” products, and there is a big debate over what is legal and what isn’t. Let’s clear some of the confusion:
Now, the big question: if cannabidiol is found in industrial hemp, hemp, and marijuana, is it legal or not? This is where the line gets pretty blurry. If you are lucky enough to live in a state that has passed recreational use laws, you are good to go: you can order any cannabis product online or pick one up at your local dispensary. Make sure you are aware of your local laws regarding how much you can possess at a time, and definitely do not drive over any state lines while you are in possession of a cannabis product. Marijuana statutes are changing at a rapid pace these days, and your county laws can differ from your state or federal laws, so it’s critical to stay up-to-date with your local regulations. If you live in a state where marijuana is illegal, there is likely nowhere to pick up a cannabidiol product locally. Shipping a CBD product in the mail is possible, although many companies will only ship to states where it is legal, and they may require a copy of your medical marijuana card. Sending CBD in the mail to states where marijuana is illegal is risky, although again, it doesn’t seem like the authorities are too concerned about it. However, CBD from hemp can be easily accessed and shipped to any state.
The biggest factor to consider (after legality) when it comes to using cannabidiol orally or as a topical is making sure you get your hands on a quality product. The current Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not regulate the marijuana industry in any way, and researchers have found that only one-third of marijuana extracts are accurately labeled. Fortunately, the one-third is produced by reputable companies who offer quality products and should be able answer even your most difficult questions. It is essential to take the time to find a company that you trust so you know you are purchasing a quality (and safe) product.
If you want to start using a CBD product for anti aging, talk with your trusted healthcare professional to address any questions or concerns you might have. Cannabidiol is safe, but just like any other medicine or herb, it is powerful and should be treated as such. We can’t stop time, but we can certainly slow down its effects, and it looks like CBD just might be the key.