You may have noticed that many products in the Skin Salvation range are made with cold-pressed hemp oil; it’s a great ingredient, astonishingly rich in essential fatty acids and sustainably grown to organic standards in Europe. We love it for its anti-inflammatory and skin-nourishing properties, the way it feeds the skin with exactly the nutrients those with chronically dry skin are often lacking. In fact, hemp seed oil has been shown in scientific studies to help with the management of eczema, so we think it’s the perfect oil to use in our lotions and potions.
But what’s the difference between the hemp oil we use in our skincare and the CBD oil that we’ve been hearing so much about lately? Are they the same thing?
Let’s take a closer look at where each oil actually comes from and what it does.
Hemp Seed Oil
Hemp seed oil is extracted from the seeds of Cannabis Sativa hemp plants by pressing them; in its unrefined (and most nutritious) state, it’s a grassy green, herb-scented oil.
Like other seeds, hemp is full of all kinds of nutrients, but is particularly rich in vitamins E, B, B1, and B2, as well as Omegas 3 and 6 (EFAs), Gamma Linoleic Acid (GLA) and other beneficial fats. This nutritional treasure makes hemp seeds incredibly healthy, whether you add them to your diet (you can sprinkle hemp seeds on salads and cereal or use the oil as a dressing) or feed them directly to your skin via creams and balms.
Hemp plants are a form of Cannabis Sativa that is typically grown for industrial purposes; their stalks and leaves can also be used to make things like biofuel, some kinds of plastics, cloth, rope and other packaging materials. These plants contain only low levels of cannabinoids including the two most commonly known - THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) and CBD (cannabidiol) - but neither are present in anything other than trace amounts in the seeds.
So hemp seed oil, as used in our salves and creams, won’t either make you high or have the same effect as medicinal CBD oil.
CBD oil refers to oil produced from hemp specifically cultivated to be high in cannabidiols (CBD) and to contain only contains trace amounts of psychoactive THC; the CBD is extracted from the stalks, leaves and buds of Cannabis Sativa, rather than the seeds, so it comes from the same plant as the oil, just uses a different part of it.
CBD is used to treat physical and psychological ailments; cannabidiols have been shown to improve symptoms in anxiety, depression, neurodegenerative disorders, and seizures such as those triggered by epilepsy. Because it doesn’t have the psychoactive properties of marijuana and isn’t therefore a proscribed substance, you can buy CBD oil legally from chemists, online stores and health shops in the UK.
Slightly confusingly, many producers of medicinal CBD oil dilute the medicinally-potent golden CBD oil in hemp seed oil, giving their tincture the double boost of both medicinal CBD and nutritional hemp seed oil.
Marijuana of course is different to both of these oils! Grown (either legally or illegally, depending on which country/state you’re in) for its psychoactive properties, it’s high in THC, but low in the medicinal cannabidiols and nutritionally beneficial fats of hemp seed oil or CBD oil; it’s processed from the buds and leaves of the Cannabis Indica plant, rather than its hemp (Cannabis Sativa) cousin.
We hope that clears up and confusion and reassures you that what we use in Skin Salvation is safe, nutritious and most definitely on the legal side of the cannabis family!