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salve or oil cbd better

CBD creams are hydrating and easily absorbed into the skin

Use of salves can be dated as far back as ancient Egypt. Back then, their primary uses were to treat infection, inflammation and pain. Salves are created by combining a carrier oil such as coconut or olive oil with beeswax (or vegetable wax in vegan formulas), herbs and sometimes essential oils.

Thanks to the ever-growing number of studies showing CBD’s effectiveness when applied to the skin, topical methods of CBD application like balms, salves and lotions are becoming more popular. Known to have anti-inflammatory effects, cannabinoids can provide targeted relief for ​dry skin​, arthritis and even ​acne when used in skincare. But what exactly are the differences between CBD salves and a CBD creams?

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CBD-infused salves are healing and long lasting

In CBD salves, the ‘herbal’ part of the formula is replaced by cannabidiol and the fatty acids in the oil act as the ‘vehicle’ for carrying the cannabinoids. Beeswax acts as a preservative and because they contain no water, CBD salves last much longer than products which contain a water base such as lotions or creams.

The difference with CBD creams lies in the water content of the formula. Creams are a combination of oil, emulsifying agents (e.g. beeswax) and water, allowing them to easily absorb into the skin. The CBD is administered in the same way as in a salve – through the fat content within the oil base.

When it comes to CBD creams and CBD salves, the real differences between the two lies in the fact that creams use a percentage of water in their bases. On the other hand, salves use only oil and wax, resulting in a longer product shelf life.

Some users claim that salves work quicker than CBD oils. Of course, there is no real quantifiable evidence for this. It does make sense, however, being that one applies a CBD salve directly at the source (the phytochemicals don’t have to travel through the digestive system or go through multiple stages of absorption).

Any good CBD salve should have a full list of ingredients on the tub it comes in. When browsing around for options, keep an eye out for the wax that was used, as well as the oil base and other ingredients.

In terms of CBD salves vs. CBD oils, the key difference is that one consumes an oil by placing drops under the tongue. Salves, on the other hand, are applied topically by rubbing directly onto the desired area.

What’s the difference between CBD salves and CBD oils?

According to results of a CBD-administration study on human skin cells, Dr. Biro points out the possibility of the ECS actually regulating skin inflammation: “[It appears that when] an inflammatory or irritation challenge assaults the skin,” Dr says, “the endocannabinoid system fights against it.”

Learning the lingo and differentiating between all the cannabis-related products can be a daunting task. But with a little knowledge and a bit of self-informing, it doesn’t have to be.

Generally, the more fatty acids an oil has, the more CBD it can carry. But don’t worry; for those of you that are sensitive to coconut oil, there are other options available.

One important thing to remember about CBD salves (or any kind of hemp-based CBD product) is that they won’t get you high – or even slightly buzzed.

Pain is a universal experience, one many people are all too familiar with. The search for pain relief is one reason why cannabidiol (CBD), a non-psychoactive herbal remedy, is quickly gaining popularity. But with so many options on the market it can be hard to find a quality CBD topical for pain.  

Plant People prides itself in selling high-quality hemp products, which are organic, lab-tested, non-GMO, and gluten free. The brand's Soothe+ Balm topical is made with full spectrum hemp extract that includes minor cannabinoids, including cannabichromene (CBC) and cannabigerol (CBG). Plant People is also a certified B Corp, making this a pain cream from a top-notch organization.

Our top 7 CBD creams for pain at a glance:

Available in 17 oz. pump bottle

While this R+R Medicinals CBD Cream is strong on pain, with 1000 milligrams of full spectrum CBD, it's also gentle on skin. It does not contain any menthol, eucalyptus, dyes, or fragrances, making it a good option for those with sensitive skin. Instead, this CBD cream is made with MSM, Arnica Montana, Calendula Flower, and Jojoba, and is packed with over 4 milligrams of secondary cannabinoids like CBC, CBN, CBG, and THC per quarter sized amount for potent relief.

Our favorite topical CBD products include soothing creams, balms, salves, and lotions, all of which are made from American-grown hemp and have been independently tested by third-party labs for quality and safety purposes.