How CBD helps your skin

CBD skincare industry is one of the fast-growing. It is caused by the legalisation of cannabis for health and recreational purposes. CBD skin health products market was valued at about USD 710 million worldwide in 2018. And it is projected to reach a value of USD 960 million by 20241.

According to Euromonitor International, CBD has become a part of consumers’ daily routine. Many people find CBD as an essential functional compound in foods, beverages and beauty or wellness products2. As CBD gains further popularity, its use for skin and beauty is bound to increase.

To better appreciate the effects of CBD on the skin, is it essential to know more about the skin.

Understand the human skin first

Human skin is the largest organ consisting of about 15 % of the entire human body weight. It has three layers which are renewed every month. The skin performs many functions including temperature regulation, protection against radiation, prevention of loss of body fluids and penetration of harmful substances.

At the same time, the skin contains a network of nerves and receptors which serve as the first line of defence against injury and infection. The endocannabinoid system (ECS) receptors present on the human skin control the proper and well-balanced growth, survival and competence of skin cells. A disruption in the balance leads to several skin diseases like hair growth disorder, allergic dermatitis, seborrhea and unpleasant conditions including itching or pain.

CBD products can affect ECS and potentially helps with some conditions improving the balance and maintaining immune competence and/or tolerance of skin cells3.

What effect does CBD have on the skin?

According to various studies, CBD has some beneficial effects on human skin. They are the following:

  • Antioxidant and anti-ageing effects. External environmental factors such as sun and pollution damage skin and the ageing process begin slowly. Using CBD in skincare products may help to slow down the signs of ageing as it neutralises the harmful effects of free radicals. Some findings show that CBD helps to fight black spots, skin dullness and wrinkles which keeps skin healthy and smooth. Also, CBD is rich in vitamin E which helps to repair the skin and remove wrinkles4.
  • Antimicrobial protection. CBD skincare products may improve immunity against microbial invasion. It forms a protective layer on the skin and protects it against microbial attack5.
  • Protection against UV radiation. CBD-related skin products may help reduce UV radiation harmful effect. Also, it is used to decrease the unpleasant condition associated with sunburn-like pain or inflammation4.
  • CBD skincare products contain a high amount of fatty acids like omega 3, 6, and 9. Thus, they help prevent moisture loss. Also, CBD may promote oil production and help to manage dry skin6.
  • Help with some skin defects. CBD may help manage some skin conditions like acne, dermatitis, and psoriasis. CBD-related products cannot be used as the only treatment and they do not cure these diseases, but many people experience significant improvements in skin health on regular use7.

How can you use CBD for skin health?

One can find many skincare products containing CBD. The methods of adding CBD into skincare routine include:

  • Topical applications of moisturisers or creams that contain CBD
  • Infusing CBD oil into sea-salt soaks
  • CBD soap
  • CBD shampoo
  • Adding pure CBD oils into your diet

When deciding on CBD use, look for products of high quality. When starting, it is recommended to begin with micro-dosing. If you are not sure about the source of your CBD, do not hesitate to reach out the legal supplier and ask the questions you have. And remember, the product should have organic certification indicating that CBD is free from pesticide contamination.


  1. Shahbandeh M. CBD skin care: market value worldwide 2024. Statista. Published November 11, 2019. Accessed January 12, 2020.
  2. MacGuill S. Cannabis: The New Beauty Disruptor. Euromonitor International. Published June 21, 2019. Accessed January 12, 2020.
  3. Bíró T, Tóth BI, Haskó G, Paus R, Pacher P. The endocannabinoid system of the skin in health and disease: novel perspectives and therapeutic opportunities. Trends in Pharmacological Sciences. 2009;30(8):411-420. doi:10.1016/
  4. Tóth K, Ádám D, Bíró T, Oláh A. Cannabinoid Signaling in the Skin: Therapeutic Potential of the “C(ut)annabinoid” System. Molecules. 2019;24(5):918. doi:10.3390/molecules24050918
  5. Appendino G, Gibbons S, Giana A, et al. Antibacterial Cannabinoids from Cannabis sativa : A Structure−Activity Study. Journal of Natural Products. 2008;71(8):1427-1430. doi:10.1021/np8002673
  6. Oláh A, Tóth BI, Borbíró I, et al. Cannabidiol exerts sebostatic and antiinflammatory effects on human sebocytes. Journal of Clinical Investigation. 2014;124(9):3713-3724. doi:10.1172/JCI64628
  7. Oláh A, Markovics A, Szabó‐Papp J, et al. Differential effectiveness of selected non‐psychotropic phytocannabinoids on human sebocyte functions implicates their introduction in dry/seborrhoeic skin and acne treatment. Experimental Dermatology. 2016;25(9):702-707. doi:


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