CBD Cream – What Is It And Does It Actually Work?

Naturalis - 21st February
Woman Using CBD Oil

The human body is packed full of cannabinoid receptors and on the surface of your skin is no different. Clinical trials into CBD have discovered it can penetrate beyond the epidermis, deep into the skin, where it can cause its effect. Consequently, there are a vast array of CBD creams, salves and lotions on the market that allow you to experience the wonders of CBD at home.

CBD skincare is in-style at the moment. The products available are extensive yet potentially ambiguous or confusing to those researching them for the first time. Without understanding how CBD works, even the concept of putting a plant that is most commonly used recreationally onto your skin can cause confusion. However, there is a wealth of clinical research suggesting there are benefits.

We will delve into the world of CBD creams, explaining the benefits, side-effects and how they affect the human body to hopefully give you a clearer understanding of what to expect when purchasing CBD creams, lotions, salves and transdermal patches.

What is CBD Cream?

Cannabidiol (CBD) belongs to a group of compounds found within the cannabis plant called cannabinoids. These cannabinoids can be extracted for a variety of reasons including as pharmaceutical medicines, dietary supplements or to be used as a topical cream for skin care.

CBD infused cream is a topical cream that has been infused with cannabidiol with the intention of being rubbed onto the skin for a variety of reasons including skincare or to reduce inflammation. These CBD creams can either be water-based, oil-based or a mixture of the two.

CBD Revitalise Cream

The Science of Your Skin – How Does CBD Cream Work?

Throughout the entire human body, we have a network of chemical messengers, enzymes and receptors that make up the endocannabinoid system (ECS). The ECS regulates a whole host of functions including sleep, appetite, memory and immune function. The body produces its own cannabinoid molecules called endocannabinoids, but we can also ingest external sources of cannabinoids, such as though produced by the cannabis plant and these will also act upon the cannabinoid receptors.

The receptors of the ECS are located all throughout the human body, including under the surface of your skin. When CBD infused cream is rubbed onto the skin, it doesn’t enter the bloodstream like when you ingest CBD oil orally or inhale it. Instead, CBD cream is able to transverse the waterproof outer layer of skin (epidermis) into the dermis.

The dermis hosts an array of different anatomical features including follicles that produce hair and sebaceous glands that lubricate the skin. The dermis consists of collagen and elastin which give skin its elasticity and strength. Also, the skin’s own immune system is located in the dermis. All of these features of the dermis enable the skin to regulate body temperature, produce hormones, fight infection and act as a waterproof barrier.

Hair follicles and sebaceous glands synthesize endocannabinoids such anandamide and 2-AG and almost nearly all skin cells contain a high presence of the two major cannabinoids receptors CB1 and CB2 in their membranes.

The skin essentially has its own local and contained endocannabinoid system that can be activated through topical use of CBD cream. The skin is a complex organ but studies show that the skin’s ECS helps with the immune function that promotes healthy skin and external use of CBD oil (particularly its anti-inflammatory properties) can aid this. This is why so many people are turning to these creams because CBD will elevate your skincare routine.

How To Use CBD Cream

You use CBD cream like you would use any other topical lotion – you just apply it to your skin. Identify and then aim for the afflicted area for local relief if applicable. Administering the correct dosage of CBD cream is a matter of trial and error because no standard exists. The general consensus is to start small and gradually increase until optimum relief is achieved.

CBD Cream Benefits – What the studies say

Lots of research has been conducted into the potential medical benefits of ingesting CBD and suggest an array of potential properties. Topical/Transdermal CBD hasn’t undergone the same depth of clinical study, although the results are still interesting: –

A 2014 study that shows CBD has an anti-inflammatory effect on sebaceous glands;
A 2015 study to suggest CBD reduces inflammation and therefore pain-related arthritic behaviours;
A 2019 study suggesting the effectiveness of CBD on inflammation-based skin disorders such as psoriasis.

Arthritic Pain Behaviour

This study concluded that ‘topical CBD application has therapeutic potential for relief of arthritis pain-related behaviours and inflammation without evident side-effects’.


The study suggested that topical CBD Cream has a ‘trinity of cellular anti-acne action’. With the study concluding that the data currently collected on CBD ‘point(s) to a promising, cost-effective, and, likely, well-tolerated new strategy for treating acne vulgaris, the most common human skin disease.’

Woman With Acne

Inflammatory Skin Diseases

This retroactive study looked into treating psoriasis and dermatitis with CBD-enriched ointment to scarred areas of skin twice daily for three months. It concluded that ‘the results showed that topical treatment with CBD-enriched ointment significantly improved the skin parameters, the symptoms and the PASI index score. No irritant or allergic reactions were documented during the period treatment’.

These studies all use pharmaceutical-grade cannabidiol that has been prepared for clinical studies. No CBD tincture, CBD cream or other CBD-enriched product has undergone any clinical trial and therefore is not linked to these studies. The studies are provided for informational purposes only.

Most CBD cream products are aimed at joint and muscle chronic pain relief for athletes. However, more products are hitting the market that combines CBD with an array of essential oils to be used as part of a skincare routine.

CBD Cream Dosage

When consuming CBD orally, the dosage is extremely important because the CBD has to effectively absorb into the bloodstream before it can have any effect. However, considering that topical CBD creams are applied locally and therefore do not enter the bloodstream, the dosage isn’t as important.

With CBD cream, a little does tend to go a long way. So, all you need to do is identify the affected area for relief and apply the cream to it.

The majority of people who use CBD cream will start with a small amount of cream, and gradually increase the amount over a period of a few weeks until the optimum amount of relief is reached. The idea here is to get the maximum amount of relief using the minimum amount of CBD cream.

You don’t need to cover your whole body, just the affected areas. Some suggested places where you can put CBD are: –

  • Face, neck and shoulders
  • Elbows, knees and other joints
  • Hands and feet

You may be surprised at how far a small amount of CBD cream does go, so there’s no need to use too much!

CBD Cream Side Effects

The majority of people who used CBD infused cream for a whole variety of different treatments do not report any side effects through topical use. There have been a few instances of where ingesting CBD has caused occasional side-effects in some clinical studies, but these have been described mild and temporary.

The World Health Organisation has declared that CBD is non-toxic and non-addictive to humans and 100% safe for use.

The minor side-effects that have been experienced by CBD have been changes in appetite, difficulty sleeping and nausea.

Naturalis London Revitalise CBD Cream

With an amazing 375 mg of CBD in 75 ml of cream, the Naturalis London Revitalise CBD Cream is a clinically-proven body-cream that reduces dryness and inflammation when used to treat eczema.

Infused with eucalyptus and cacao, our 100% vegan and sustainably harvested CBD cream has an extensive terpene profile that makes it perfect for daily topical use.

CBD Infused Cream and the Endocannabinoid System

The human body contains an endocannabinoid system that is just as important for human survival as your respiratory and circulatory systems. In fact, almost all advanced life from sea urchins, mussels and leeches to all birds, mammals and reptiles have an ECS.

The ECS in the human body is mainly comprised of two main receptors, CB1 and CB2 which interact with endocannabinoid molecules produced by the body. When stimulated, the cannabinoid receptors can interact with other receptors such as the TRPV1 receptors, which are involved in thermoregulation (temperature regulation) and inflammation.

THC has a strong affinity for both CB1 and CB2 receptors. However, CBD doesn’t have a binding affinity for either and its method of action is more indirect. It changes the way the receptors respond to other chemical messengers. For example, CBD reduces an enzyme FAAH which is responsible for breaking down the endocannabinoid, anandamide, which plays a role in pleasure and motivation.

There is a high concentration of cannabinoid receptors in your skin, which CBD cream can facilitate CBD reaching, which can have effects on your: –

Sebaceous Glands – Cannabinoids help to balance the proper functioning of sebaceous glands by maintaining the amount of sebum they produced. Sebum is a lipid-containing substance that can be overproduced in sufferers of acne, producing oily skin.
Epidermis – Cannabinoids can activate the receptors in cells of the epidermis which help to regulate the defence barrier to the outside world, as well as having an anti-inflammatory action.
Immune Cells – The skin has its own contained immune system in the dermis layer which is controlled somewhat by endocannabinoids. They regulate the action of the immune system.

More and more people are turning to cannabidiol for its effects when applied topically and as more research is conducted, we are hearing more about CBDs potential benefits.

Is CBD Cream Legal in the UK?

CBD infused cream is perfectly legal for use in the UK, however, there are a few grey areas in the law that must be adhered to with CBD-containing products.

CBD must be obtained from ‘EU-approved industrial hemp’ and the products must contain no THC at all. A misconception is that CBD products must contain less than 0.2% THC in the UK to be legal, however, this number pertains to the limit of how much CBD cannabis must have to be legally classified as hemp.

The only instance in which THC can legally be supplied in the UK is from the pharmaceutical-grade medication, Sativex, which has been approved for use with a prescription for treatment of Multiple Sclerosis.

Alternative Ways To Consume CBD

Topical uses of cannabidiol such as CBD infused creams aren’t the only way to use the cannabinoid, with the other uses involving some method of ingesting it into the body and therefore have it enter the bloodstream.


CBD flower itself can be vaped or the CBD extracted and placed into an e-liquid to be used in a liquid vaporizer. This technique allows for CBD to instantly reach the bloodstream and is generally recommended for quick symptom relief.


Tinctures containing cannabidiol are what is commonly referred to as ‘CBD oil’. They are CBD contained in an external medium, such as MCT oil, hemp oil or even alcohol which are designed to be taken orally under the tongue (sublingual).


Edibles are when CBD that has been extracted from the cannabis plant has been placed (usually) into a fat-based substance (oil, butter) and then used in a food/drink recipe. CBD gummies are a popular form of edible where CBD has been infused into a gummy bear-like sweet. CBD milk chocolate is also an extremely easy and tasty way to get your daily dose of cannabidiol.

CBD Milk Chocolate


CBD can be contained in small gel-like capsules (think cod liver oil supplements) that can be taken orally and ingested into the digestive system. CBD capsules have many benefits and are great for people who wish to have an easy method of taking a standardized dosage of CBD every day.


CBD flower is just the same as marijuana aside from the fact it doesn’t contain any of the intoxicating cannabinoid, THC. Therefore, it can still be consumed in the traditional ways that marijuana is consumed, which is most commonly light on fire and the smoke produced via combustion is inhaled into the lungs.

All of the different methods of ingested CBD all have different levels of effectiveness because they all have their own biological pathways for getting CBD into the bloodstream. Consequently, this can mean some methods are better for a fast-acting method like acute pain, whereas others are more suited for longer-lasting relief.

Why Choose Naturalis London?

All Naturalis products are made using premium CBD that naturally helps the body and mind work in a way to promote and maintain good health and wellness. By hand-selecting the best hemp farmers in Europe, we ensure that only the best hemp extract is used to create the highest quality product.

Our desire for the best has ensured that Naturalis London has become a leading company in the CBD market.


The increase in popularity of CBD infused creams and other lotions and topical products is irrefutable. The ever-expanding market proves that there is a demand for cannabidiol containing products that are designed to be rubbed onto the skin for topical relief.

Naturalis - 21st February

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