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How Hemp Oil is Being Used in the Beauty Industry

Natural beauty is booming as more people learn what Mother Nature has been telling us for centuries: she’s more than just a pretty face. She has a whole lot to offer. 

The perks of earth-based beauty are twofold. Many natural products are more sustainable and eco friendly than their counterparts; likewise, they tend to be better for consumers. Along with products like argan and coconut oils, hemp oil has become one of eco-conscious beauty’s most famous faces in the past couple of years. 

If you’re wondering how this extract from the cannabis plant became a pop culture phenomenon and health and beauty staple, here’s what you should know.


Hemp oil can refer to any extract from the hemp plant. While marijuana is legal in many states, it is not yet federally legal. However, the Farm Bill of 2018 made industrial hemp and hemp derivatives, including CBD oil, with less than 0.3% THC federally legal. Hemp oil encompasses CBD oil as well as hemp seed oil. The latter contains no cannabinoids, including THC or CBD, and is similar to flaxseed oil in its health properties. CBD oil, which is made from all parts of the hemp plant, including the stalks, flowers, and leaves, can contain CBD alone or CBD and other cannabinoids from the hemp plant. 

Some beauty products contain hemp seed oil alone, while others contain CBD oil. Those that contain CBD oil have cosmetic and health-boosting attributes. 

Industry Interest 

The United States beauty industry is valued at $532 billion. And the CBD beauty industry specifically is projected to be worth $25 billion in the next decade. This means in 10 years, CBD could make up 15% of the total skin care market. Research shows more than 50% of women are interested in CBD-infused makeup products, including 67% of Generation Z, 62% of Millennials, and 33% of older generations. The influx of CBD in the beauty industry makes sense for a couple of reasons, including its connection to major beauty trends such as sustainability and self-care, not to mention the overall surge in popularity of CBD products nationwide. 

CBD and Self-Care

Like CBD itself, the notion of self-care is another of the past few years’ most prevalent trends. Self-care can be as ambiguous as it is ubiquitous. Depending on your personal perception (or what influencers you follow), it can encompass anything from mimosas and manicures to meditation and nutritional supplements. 

The self-care movement has been criticized as another capitalist-driven money-maker. And while it is undoubtedly profitable (valued at about $10 billion), its core principles are arguably positive: prioritizing health and happiness and carving out a bit of “me” time is essential for anyone. 

At its worst-self-care can be expensive, competitive, and toxic (not dissimilar to the beauty industry itself). But at its best, it can help individuals feel and live better. In addition to the individualistic value of this, research shows people are better able to give to others when they themselves feel well. Basically, you’re more likely to go out of your way to give someone a lift if you are not running on an empty tank. 

The idea of cosmetics as self-care is contentious for some. But based on the fundamental concept of self-care as a means to improve happiness and well-being, it certainly seems to fit. It’s especially apt when cosmetics incorporate potentially beneficial elements, whether lavender, vitamin C, or hemp oil. 

Health & Beauty Benefits of Hemp Oil 

Hemp oil seems uniquely suitable to marry beauty and self-care since it can provide cosmetic and medicinal benefits. Hemp oil without CBD (i.e., hemp seed oil) has similar benefits to argan oil. Rich in omega-3 fatty and omega-6 acids, applied topically, can supply supple soft skin and hair. When CBD is included, its potential cosmetic and medicinal benefits are more significant. 

The health effects of CBD are well-documented and range from pain and inflammation reduction to acne treatment

Speaking with Dermatology Times, Tina Alster, MD., clinical professor of dermatology at Georgetown University Medical Center in Washington, D.C., referenced overwhelming evidence that CBD can positively impact an array of ailments, including chronic pain, inflammation, anxiety, headaches, nausea, neurological disorders, epilepsy, insomnia, and skin disorders. 

Alster explained CBD oil’s anti-inflammatory properties could benefit the skin in a few ways, by moisturizing, reducing excess oil production, and relieving pain and itching. 

“Topical CBD is safe and works effectively for all skin types. The products are easy to administer. Sufferers of serious medical skin conditions and those seeking innovative skincare options can benefit from topical CBD use,” Dr. Alster told Dermatology Times.

“Anti-inflammatory properties associated with CBD are beneficial in treating such dermatologic conditions as acne, psoriasis, and eczema due to reduction of dryness, irritation, and redness. CBD-containing creams, oils, gels, and serums not only moisturize and soothe the skin but are also showing encouraging results in relieving pain caused by certain skin disorders.”

While topical CBD products work well for supporting a number of beauty-related concerns, ingestible CBD products designed for anti-inflammatory and healing purposes, like Bespoke Extracts Full Spectrum CBD Tincture, can also provide relief for chronic inflammatory disorders like dermatitis (eczema), rosacea, seborrheic dermatitis, and psoriasis.

CBD also has antioxidant, antibacterial, and antifungal properties. In addition to regulating sebum production and reducing acne, CBD oil may protect and repair skin from free radicals. As Dr. Alster explained, this, combined with hemp oil’s omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, may improve overall skin appearance and reduce signs of aging, such as fine lines and wrinkles.

CBD and omega-3 and omega-3 fatty acids aren’t the only things CBD beauty products have going for them. Full-spectrum and broad-spectrum CBD oils contain multiple cannabinoids from the hemp plant, as well as terpenes. Terpenes are kind of like essential oils, with scents ranging from earthy to citrus and pine. But more importantly, they can help cannabinoids, including CBD, work more effectively. Whether for cosmetic or health benefits or both, when shopping for CBD oils, look for those using full-spectrum or broad-spectrum CBD to get the full effect.

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