Of all the cannabis-based topicals out there, salves might just be one of the most popular types. 

Why all the popularity? First and foremost, salves are super convenient — they make using CBD easy. Salves are also great for the skin, almost by definition. 

What is a salve?

A salve is defined as any ointment or cream that provides soothing relief. Many times this relief is geared towards helping burns and other wounds heal, but it can really refer to anything. Salves can be distinguished from balms and other topicals by the fact that they forego beeswax, instead retaining a more oily consistency. Salves have been around for centuries and don’t seem to be going anywhere soon!

We’ll be focusing on CBD-infused salves here, for obvious reasons...

The beauty of CBD Salves

The benefits of CBD salves are two-fold. Even salves without CBD are designed to be great for one’s skin, often featuring a mix of hydrating oils and healing botanicals. Salves can actually change the biochemistry of one’s skin and reduce inflammation enough to benefit skin damaged by cuts, burns, and sunburns. 

And that’s just a starting point. Add CBD into the mix and inflammation may be further reduced. Though CBD doesn’t really permeate through the skin enough to reach the bloodstream, it activates all sorts of good stuff on skin surfaces. Here are some details. 

How do Salves work?

The moment a CBD salve is applied, it begins to do a few things. Its CBD molecules bind to receptors that control inflammation, pain, and even one’s perception of heat. These molecules may also help the skin’s sebaceous glands produce just the right amount of oil, leading many researchers to suspect that CBD could alleviate acne. 

Premium ingredients = premium salves

As with any type of CBD product, purity is everything. Early 20th-century salves might’ve been based around synthetic ingredients or petroleum jelly, but today’s best formulations take a more holistic approach featuring cocoa butter, shea butter, or sweet almond oil. 

The purity of a salve’s CBD content matters too. Full Spectrum CBD products likely make better topicals than other varieties because their terpenes act as permeability enhancers that help everything absorb nice and fully into the skin.