Health Condition

Let's Talk About Skin Care.

Statistics & Data

Skin Care By The Numbers

of people between the ages of 12 and 24 experience at least minor acne.

of Canadians will suffer from Atopic Dermatitis at some point in their lives.

of CBD products sold are topicals.

of total body weight is made up of skin.

Level of Evidence: Empirical

Apothecare has ranked sleep on the middle level of the evidence pyramid. Many of the studies assessing cannabis for the treatment of skin conditions are small or use animals instead of humans.

Cannabis and Skin Care

Topical formulations of cannabis, such as creams, ointments, and lotions, are gaining a lot of interest for individuals with various skin conditions. Many people find topicals to be less intimidating compared to inhaling or ingesting cannabis because of how easy creams and ointments are to use. It is important to note, however, that there has been relatively minimal research in this area, so its unclear exactly what conditions cannabis creams are helpful to treat. That being said, there is in vitro (i.e. test-tube studies) and animal studies that suggest topical cannabinoids may be useful for the treatment several conditions.

These conditions include:

Results from one research study showed that cannabis creams helped reduce pain in patients having blistered skin. These patients were in turn able to decrease their opioid use for their pain management. Additionally, the researchers found that cannabis creams have a quick onset of action. Pain relief was seen in 3 to 5 minutes after application and research participants reported that their skin healed more quickly.

Itch may be one of the most irritating symptoms of any skin condition. It can be a result of several conditions such as eczema, psoriasis, bug bites, allergic reactions, etc. There is data suggesting that cannabinoids work differently than traditional anti-itch medications like antihistamines and corticosteroid creams. This means using a cannabis cream alongside traditional anti-itch treatment may be the most effective as each one works in a different way to combat the itch more effectively.

Cannabidiol (CBD), an active component of cannabis, has shown to reduce inflammation and increase antioxidant activity. A CBD cream may be useful to manage localized inflammatory pain and swelling.

Cell Proliferation:
Skin cell proliferation is the process whereby our skin cells in our body divide. If this happens too quickly, it can result in skin conditions such as psoriasis. Several tests and animal studies have found that cannabinoids reduce excessive skin cell proliferation which means cannabis creams may be an effective option for psoriasis.

Interestingly, researchers also found that tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) might reduce the risk of hair loss by helping regulate the cells dividing near hair follicles. Further research is needed, but cannabinoids may play a role in hair loss prevention in the future.

Cannabinoids have some evidence in animal studies that suggest it may reduce scarring. More information is needed to confirm this but using a cannabis cream alongside proven anti-scarring products may be appropriate.

Make sure to connect with a knowledgeable pharmacist for a personalized skin condition assessment!

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Is cannabis right for you?

Cannabis use may not be appropriate for you if have one or more of the following:
  • A history or family history of psychosis in the family
  • Currently taking a blood thinner such as Warfarin
  • Reduced liver function
  • History of addiction
  • A complex medication regimen (cannabis can interfere with the metabolism of several classes of medications)
  • Sedating medications such as benzodiazepines (such as lorazepam) and/or opioids (such as Percocet)
Make sure to talk to a knowledgeable healthcare professional to make sure cannabis is safe for you!

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What cannabis product can I use for skin care?

Cannabis products come in a variety of different formulations such as oils, capsules, creams, dried flower, and concentrates. With an extensive number of products available on the market, it can be quite confusing to select a product that may work for you. Our pharmacists are trained to assess which cannabis products can be safe and effective for you. Reach out to a Pharmacist today for a consultation!

Contact A Pharmacist