Cannabis for the Skin: Why & How
by Kiki Athanas
October 29, 2018
While I was first intrigued on how to supplement with CBD through tinctures and supplements - I get loads of questions about how to use this powerful and versatile plant medicine topically.
Since I was first introduced to topical CBD applications from Tijen and Ashley at Earth Kisses Sky, which combines holistic medicine, and medicinal cannabis to provide relief from pain, particularly to those living with auto-immune diseases - I wanted them to share a little more on the topic to get you up to speed on how to use it as a rub or salve…
“Through our work, we contribute to the health and well-being of the whole person through our integrated clinical practice that includes acupuncture, massage, holistic nutrition, holistic medicine, and our array of infused medical cannabis products designed to reduce pain and inflammation and promote healing.”
What are the benefits of cannabis as it relates to the skin?
Tijen and Ashley: The skin is the biggest organ of the body, which makes it pretty important to take care of. Whether people realize it or not, the body produces endocannabinoids that feed your endocannabinoid system, which acts as a regulator of all systems of the body and brings the body to a state of homeostasis. When you introduce phytocannabinoids (plant based cannabinoids) via cannabis to your skin, it enacts your CB1 and CBD2 receptors, and is distributed through your body to the places that need cannabinoids the most. Essentially, adding cannabinoids to your skin ensures your body has enough or even more of what it naturally produces.
Cannabis topicals can be used for many applications, but Earth Kisses Sky focuses on two specific applications: Pain & Inflammation, and Skin, Healing & Beauty. Each product is specially created to combine the best ingredients for skin care with medical cannabis, to help enact the cannabinoid receptors within your endocannabinoid system.
Applying EKS’ Pain & Inflammation medical cannabis salve helps reduce inflammation while blocking your body’s pain response to that inflammation.
Applying our Skin, Healing & Beauty medical cannabis salve protects, hydrates, tightens, and soothes skin, helping to relieve acne, eczema, psoriasis, itching of bug bites and rashes, and reduces redness and inflammation.
Top Recommended Application?
Tijen and Ashley: People may be surprised that the most effective way to absorb cannabis is through the anus.
This is because there is more mucous membranes in the anal canal than any other part of the body. It’s believed that you absorb 80% of the cannabis medicine through “the back door” while you get 30% ingesting it orally and only 15% by smoking it. If you’re interested in “back door medicine”, it’s always important to ensure you’re using water soluble products that will absorb into your blood stream and not cause harm.
This being said, cannabis topicals are an excellent way to provide relief right to the source; topicals will provide a “tingly” sensation where applied as it works to activate the endocannabinoid system with all those new cannabinoids you’ve introduced via your topical.
Success Case Studies
Tijen and Ashley: Many of our clients come to us for pain relief and use our registered massage therapy and acupuncture services to find comfort due to medical conditions or injury. Clients remark to us on a regular basis that they use our medical cannabis Pain & Inflammation salve and love that it doesn’t produce a harsh, chemically smell. They also like the conditioning the salve provides for the skin while providing localized pain relief.
One of our clients had a severe allergic reaction from which she was having a hard time healing. She used our Skin, Healing & Beauty medical cannabis salve and found that her skin began to restore and regenerate itself. She uses the product as a daily moisturizer and if anyone in her house has a rash or hives due to allergies, our salve is their go to!
How do “terpenes” work to enhance and effect the healing powers of the cannabis?
Tijen and Ashley: Terpenes are the building blocks of the cannabis plant. There are over 100 terpenes in the cannabis plant. Terpenes are what are responsible for producing the aroma and taste of cannabis. For instance, you may find your strain has a hint of a lemon taste and aroma, which may suggest your strain contains limonene, which has natural anti-fungal and antibacterial properties, and may even help with digestion and gastric reflux. Pinene (pine) is also contained in some cannabis strains. Pinene also has anti-inflammatory properties. Linalool acts as an anti-depressant and a sedative, making it a popular sleep aid for centuries.
Terpenes and cannabinoids (CBD and THC, for example) work together in something called The Entourage Effect, which is essentially a synergy between cannabinoids and terpenes in the cannabis plant that enables the effectiveness of “whole plant medicine.”
Essentially all the cannabinoids and terpenes working together in harmony is greater than the sum of its parts. When choosing cannabis strains, it’s important not only to look at the THC and CBD content, but also understand the terpenes contained within your strain so to understand their wider effects.
Earth Kisses Sky is continuing to provide specialized treatments to patients by referral. We are also continuing to develop our brand and continue to grow by applying to accelerator and incubator programs that are a good fit for our vision. As Canada’s dawn of legal cannabis is upon us, we will continue to formulate our medical salves for eventual inclusion in the legal cannabis markets once topicals become included with Canada’s legal cannabis programs.