The surging popularity of CBD has been making waves in the skincare industry, with more and more people interested in trying CBD for conditions such as psoriasis. Psoriasis is an uncomfortable chronic skin condition with no known cure. Can CBD help to treat this condition? Today we will be looking at the facts. Psoriasis is a debilitating skin condition that has major impacts on livelihood. Learn more about CBD for Psoriasis symptoms .
CBD Oil for Psoriasis and Psoriatic Arthritis
The surging popularity of CBD has been making waves in the skincare industry, with more and more people interested in trying CBD for conditions such as psoriasis.
What is Psoriasis?
Psoriasis is an immune-related, chronic skin condition that causes red, flaky patches of skin covered with silvery scales known as ‘plaques’. These are formed as when a person has psoriasis, their skin replacement process speeds up, taking just a few days to replace skin cells that usually take 21-28 days. Commonly affected areas include the elbows, knees, scalp and lower back, but can appear anywhere on your body and they may be sore and itchy. It is thought that psoriasis affects around 2% of people in the UK, of all ages but most often develops in adults under 35 years old, affecting men and women equally.
The severity of psoriasis can vary, for some it’s just a minor irritation, but for others it can majorly affect their quality of life. Whether you have psoriasis yourself, or are looking for the best CBD oil products for psoriasis for a loved one, read on below to find out more how CBD (cannabidiol, an active chemical found in the Cannabis Sativa plant) can benefit this skin condition.
Are There Different Types of Psoriasis?
There are several different types of psoriasis, which include:
Plaque psoriasis (psoriasis vulgaris) – the most common type that occurs in around 80-90% of cases
Scalp psoriasis- red patches of skin covered in silvery scales on parts of the scalp, or the whole scalp
Guttate psoriasis – which causes small sores on the chest, arms, legs and scalp and is more common in children and teenagers
Inverse psoriasis- found in creases of the skin, such as the armpits, groin, between the buttocks and under the breasts
Pustular psoriasis- which causes pus-filled blisters on the skin
Erythrodermic psoriasis – a rare type of psoriasis which can affect skin all over the body and cause intense itching
People with psoriasis may initially only develop one type of psoriasis, but can develop another type at a later point in time.
What is Psoriatic Arthritis?
Psoriatic arthritis is a type of arthritis that affects some people who suffer from psoriasis. It can cause joints to become swollen, stiff and painful, and it is a long-term condition that can get progressively worse, with a risk of the joints becoming permanently damaged in severe cases. If treated early, its progression and any joint damage can be minimised.
Can CBD Be Used for Psoriasis?
Whilst there is no known cure for psoriasis, there are treatments available which can help to manage and ease the symptoms. More and more research is suggesting that cannabinoids such as CBD can help with psoriasis due to its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
When CBD enters the body, it binds with receptors called endocannabinoids which affect pain, itching and inflammation. There are two types of receptors in the endocannabinoid system, CB1 and CB2, and it is the latter which CBD binds with, which then has an effect on the body’s immune system. This activates signals in the body which tells the cells that cause inflammation to subside, and when it comes to psoriasis, CBD is reported to stimulate the secretion of cells which remove dead skin cell debris and allow skin to heal properly.
In a 2019 study, 20 participants with psoriasis were asked to apply a CBD ointment on the affected areas of their skin twice a day for three months. The CBD ointment improved both skin hydration and elasticity, and also the quality of life of the participants based on the Psoriasis Area Severity Index.
In another recent study in 2020, 50 participants suffering from scalp psoriasis were asked to use a CBD based shampoo for just two weeks. The participants showed reduced itching, burning and inflammation on the scalp. More research is required into this area.
What do Skincare Experts Think About Using CBD for Psoriasis?
Although they agree that more studies are required in this field, many dermatologists are now seeing the benefits of CBD for psoriasis. Robert Dellavalle MD, a dermatologist from Colorado says “These [traditional steroid creams] are very safe for most people, and they’re effective, but some people don’t want to use steroids in any way. CBD could be a nonsteroidal therapy to fill that gap.”
A fellow dermatologist from Connecticut and professor of dermatology at the prestigious Yale University, Mona Gohara MD uses CBD for inflammatory skin conditions ‘as they’re fizzling out.’ She says “I recommend generally using a medication to put out the fire and then using CBD to clean up the carnage.”
What Types of CBD Work Best for Psoriasis?
When it comes to psoriasis of the skin, topical forms of CBD such as creams, balms and oils are recommended as they are better absorbed into the affected area and can work quickly to soothe it. Another benefit of a CBD balm for psoriasis is that it will contain other deeply hydrating emollients which help to reduce the dryness, itching and scaling that psoriasis brings. Depending on the severity of the condition, a topical CBD or a combination of a cream and systemic treatments (formulations that are absorbed into the bloodstream, such as CBD oil drops that go under the tongue) can be used for optimal efficacy.
CBD Oil for Psoriasis – Hemp Products Your Scalp Will Love
A staggering 125 million people have psoriasis worldwide. That’s 2 to 3 percent of the total population.
Psoriasis is currently incurable, so how do you treat this chronic skin condition?
CBD is thought to be an effective treatment for psoriasis and is a popular option for improving the quality of life of people suffering from this challenging skin disease.
In this article, we will be looking at how psoriasis sufferers can benefit from CBD, what benefits it offers, and where you can find the best CBD for the condition.
Does CBD Help With Psoriasis?
Although psoriasis does not have a cure yet, there are ways to relieve symptoms for a better quality of life. CBD is considered by many experts to be one effective way of treating the condition.
Summary: How CBD may help alleviate symptoms of psoriasis:
- CBD reduces inflammation in the skin
- CBD reduces inflammation in the joints
- CBD offers pain relief
- CBD may reduce excessive skin cell production
How Does CBD Work for Psoriasis?
CBD and other cannabinoids work by interacting with the body’s endocannabinoid system.
The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is made up of two receptors — CB1 and CB2. These receptors have been found all around the body and make up the endocannabinoid system. This system helps the brain communicate with the rest of the body.
CBD interacts with these receptors, impacting receptor activity. These interactions can help reduce inflammation, aid pain relief, support the immune system, and reduce a variety of other symptoms.
CB1 receptors are found in the skin (among other places), giving CBD the potential to impact many skin conditions. Studies show that CBD’s interaction with these receptors can positively impact psoriasis and other chronic skin conditions .
The same study suggests that CBD can also slow down excess skin growth, reducing the buildup of excess skin cells involved with psoriasis flare-ups.
The anti-inflammatory qualities of CBD help reduce the swelling, redness, and irritation associated with psoriasis. Both this quality and the pain-relieving qualities of CBD also help reduce swelling and pain in the joints, making it an effective treatment for psoriatic arthritis.
Although research into the effects of CBD on psoriasis is still in the early stages, existing studies do support users’ claims. Many people with psoriasis are already using CBD to treat their condition with excellent results.
Is CBD Oil the Only Option for Psoriasis?
CBD oil isn’t the only option for psoriasis.
When orally consumed CBD is concerned, there are a number of different products that are effective. Gummies, soft gels, capsules, honey sticks, and CBD shots will all give you the same effect. It is up to you which method of consumption fits you best.
Topical CBD products are another option that can be used alone or in conjunction with an orally consumed CBD product. Creams, balms, and roll-ons can help relieve psoriasis symptoms directly at the source.
Studies show that topical CBD products can significantly improve the skin and help reduce symptoms .
Vapable products are also available if you prefer to inhale your CBD. Vaping may have a negative impact on your lungs but this method of consumption has higher bioavailability. This means far more CBD is absorbed when inhaled compared to orally consumed CBD.
Our Top 3 CBD Brands for Psoriasis:
- Royal CBD — Best Overall CBD
- Gold Bee CBD — Best Organic Vegan CBD
- Hemp Bombs CBD — Best Budget CBD
1. Royal CBD Oil
Get 15% off all Royal CBD products. Use code “CFAH” at checkout.
Royal CBD is a larger California-based company that offers high-quality premium CBD products. Their motto “Don’t Go Average, Go Royal” sums up what the company is about.
They’re a trusted brand with a wide range of products. This large brand has more infrastructure and produces CBD on a bigger scale, so you can be sure the product you need will be available.
Like Gold Bee, Royal extracts their CBD from organic hemp and gets their products third-party lab tested. They offer full-spectrum, broad-spectrum, and isolate products.
They use a CO2 extraction process to acquire their CBD from the raw hemp plant. Their heatless and solvent-less extraction method ensures maximum potency and purity without any nasty chemical residues.
They produce everything from oils of all potencies to balms, creams, and dog treats. If you’re looking for a premium CBD company that has a wide range of products, Royal CBD is a great brand.
Royal CBD has 5-star customer service. They encourage you to contact them by phone, message, or social media if you need advice on dosage, consumption, or which CBD oil will work best for you.
- Wide range of products available
- Multiple potencies available
- 5-star customer service
- Full-spectrum, broad-spectrum, and isolate available
- Uses certified organic hemp
- CO2 extraction process
- Excellent cannabinoid profiles in their full-spectrum products — independent lab tested
2. Gold Bee CBD Oil
Gold Bee is a California-based company that focuses on quality rather than quantity. They’re a smaller company that prides itself on producing the highest-quality products by incorporating a slow-diffusion process.
The slow-diffusion extraction process requires a significant amount of time and is done in small batches to ensure consistent quality. For this reason, the company sometimes struggles to keep up with demand.
The attention to detail that this company gives to its CBD products is incredible. Although their slow extraction process slows down production, their oils, gummies, and capsules are of the highest quality.
Gold Bee’s product range is limited, but there is much to say about making a few products well rather than a lot of products averagely.
You will find CBD in oil, capsules, gummies, and their unique organic honey sticks. Potency options are limited, with most of their products coming in high-potency full or broad-spectrum options.
- High-potency products
- Full-spectrum, broad-spectrum, and Isolate available
- 100% vegan (except their honey sticks)
- Uses certified organic hemp
- A small company with incredible attention to detail
- Slow-diffusion extraction process
- High terpene and cannabinoid content — independent lab tested
3. Hemp Bombs CBD
Hemp Bombs CBD is a Florida-based brand. They’ve been on the market for over 5 years now and have quite a following with many happy customers. They focus on providing premium products for an affordable price.
They put their attention toward creating high-quality CBD isolates with no full-spectrum or broad-spectrum products in their range. Their product range is wide though, with everything from gummies to pet products.
Hemp bombs extract their CBD from GMO-free organic hemp. They formerly sourced their hemp from Europe, but now the U.S has caught up with organic farming processes they use 100% U.S-grown hemp.
Although Hemp Bombs are happy to reveal where their hemp is sourced from, they don’t reveal how they extract the CBD from it. We can assume that they use a solvent extraction from looking at the independent lab reports.
There are traces of ethanol, ethyl acetate, methanol, and isopropyl alcohol in their oils. These levels are extremely low and are deemed safe for consumption.
Hemp bombs have a page dedicated to lab reports on their website, so you can see potency levels, present terpenes, solvent residues, and bacterial analysis.
Overall, Hemp Bombs CBD is a great option if you’re looking for high-quality isolates on a budget. Perhaps less premium than the last two brands, but far more cost-effective.
- Excellent value for money
- CBD isolate
- Uses U.S-grown organic hemp
- Wide range of products available
- Multiple potencies available
What is Psoriasis?
Psoriasis is a common skin condition that causes uncomfortable skin flaking, redness, and itchy patches. Psoriasis is usually found on the elbows, knees, and scalp but can occur anywhere on the body.
The severity of the condition varies greatly. For some, psoriasis is a minor irritation with small patches developing in one area. For others, it can cause serious problems and dramatically affect the quality of life.
Unfortunately, there’s no cure for this chronic disease. For most suffers this is a minor inconvenience but for others, it can cause major discomfort and eventually lead to another, a more severe condition known as psoriatic arthritis.
The Symptoms of Psoriasis
Psoriasis varies from person to person and symptoms can differ depending on the severity of the condition. It’s common to have flare-ups of psoriasis with cycles of flaring and subsidence.
There are five common types of psoriasis each with differing symptoms:
1. Plaque Psoriasis
This is the most common form of psoriasis.
Symptoms include raised, dry, red skin with flaky scales of excess skin.
Psoriasis patches are usually found on the elbows, scalp, and knees, the patches of inflamed skin can become itchy, sore, and tender.
2. Nail Psoriasis
Psoriasis on the finger and toenails can cause pitting, discoloration, abnormal nail growth, and in some cases loosening from the nail bed or crumbling of the nail.
3. Guttate Psoriasis
This form of psoriasis is more common in people under the age of 30. This type is caused by bacterial infections such as strep throat. Symptoms include small scaly lesions around the throat, chest, arms, or legs.
4. Inverse Psoriasis
Inverse Psoriasis can occur all over the body. It’s common in skin folds and sweaty areas, it can flare up through exercise or friction. Symptoms include smooth red patches of skin that feel raw and tender.
5. Psoriatic Arthritis
Psoriatic arthritis can be mild to severe but is uncomfortable for all its sufferers. It causes swollen, painful, stiff joints. Progressive joint damage is common with permanent damage possible in more serious cases.
How to Use CBD for Psoriasis
There are many different ways to treat psoriasis using CBD.
CBD can be consumed in the form of oil, edibles, and capsules.
Topical products such as balms, creams, and roll-ons are also considered effective treatments for psoriasis.
Whether you choose a full-spectrum, broad-spectrum, or isolate is also something to consider.
In this section, we will be looking at the different treatment options and helping you decide what will work best for you.
1. Oils, Gummies, or Capsules?
How you consume CBD for psoriasis is entirely up to you. Taking CBD orally with oil gives you the most flexibility as you can adjust your dose depending on how many drops are taken.
Consuming CBD-infused gummies, capsules, or other edibles makes it easier to regulate how much CBD you are taking throughout the day. Each edible or capsule has a specific dosage, making it easier to monitor your CBD intake.
2. Topical CBD products
Topical products such as creams, balms, and roll-ons can be applied directly to the skin. They have a positive effect on skin health and can be used to treat a variety of chronic skin conditions from eczema to psoriasis.
Cannabis users look for CBD topicals online from reputable sources to instantly relieve their pain or irritation and can be applied directly to the lesions, rashes, and scaly skin that psoriasis causes. They are also perfect for people that don’t want to ingest cannabis products for their psoriasis.
3. Full-Spectrum, Broad-Spectrum, or Isolate?
Full-Spectrum CBD — Full-spectrum CBD contains not only CBD but all the other cannabinoids and terpenes that are present in the hemp plant, including THC. To abide by federal law in the U.S and laws across Europe, Full-spectrum CBD products contain less than 0.3% THC.
Broad-Spectrum CBD — Broad-Spectrum CBD is similar to full-spectrum. It contains all other naturally occurring cannabinoids and terpenes however THC is removed.
CBD Isolate — CBD isolate is a pure extract. Isolates contain CBD only without any extra cannabinoids or terpenes.
Full-spectrum and broad-spectrum products are considered more effective for a wider range of conditions because the cannabinoid profile is more expansive. Cannabinoids and terpenes work in synergy to create the entourage effect.
Research suggests that full and broad-spectrum CBD has more prominent health benefits than isolates . This means they can be effectively used to treat not only psoriasis but other ailments as well.
CBD isolates (containing only CBD) are great for people that have negative reactions to other cannabinoids. Isolates are perfect for first-time users and in the case of psoriasis, are effective in both oral and topical products.
CBD Dosage for Psoriasis
There is no real dosage guide when using CBD for psoriasis.
If you have never used CBD before it is best to start with a low dose and work your way up gradually if you need to. Make sure to monitor how your body reacts to the CBD and stop upping the dose as you see results.
As for topical products, you should apply a small amount to an unaffected area of skin to ensure you do not react to anything in the cream, balm, or gel. Wait for 30 minutes to ensure your skin doesn’t react to the product.
Once you’ve made sure there is no reaction, you can follow the application instructions on your chosen topical. For creams and balms, spreading a thin even layer over the affected area is enough to take effect, other products will need rubbing in to promote absorption.
Final Thoughts: Can CBD Help With Psoriasis?
Unfortunately, psoriasis is currently incurable but it’s certainly treatable. CBD is a great way to combat psoriasis and treat your scars due to this skin condition.
Using orally consumed products alongside topical products will provide you with instant and ongoing relief from your symptoms. If you’re new to CBD remember to start small and work up your dosages to see how you react to the substance.
Make sure you purchase your CBD from a reputable and reliable brand to ensure you are ingesting a safe product that will provide results.
It’s also recommended that you speak to a dermatologist before using CBD to treat your psoriasis. Some medications you currently use may react with CBD, so be sure to check with your doctor if you’re concerned about the medication you’re using.
References Used In This Article
- Jonathan D Wilkinson and Elizabeth M Williamson. (2006). Cannabinoids inhibit human keratinocyte proliferation through a non-CB1/CB2 mechanism and have a potential therapeutic value in the treatment of psoriasis. Japanese Society for Investigative Dermatology, 45(2): 87-92.
- B Palmieri, C Laurino, and M Vadalá. (2019). A therapeutic effect of cbd-enriched ointment in inflammatory skin diseases and cutaneous scars. La Clinica Terapeutica vol, 170,2 (2019): e93-e99.
- Ethan B. Russo. (2018). The Case for the Entourage Effect and Conventional Breeding of Clinical Cannabis: No “Strain,” No Gain. Frontiers in Plant Science, 2018; 9: 1969.
Nina created CFAH.org following the birth of her second child. She was a science and math teacher for 6 years prior to becoming a parent — teaching in schools in White Plains, New York and later in Paterson, New Jersey.
The Best CBD Products That Tackle the Symptoms of Psoriasis
Psoriasis is one of those skin-related conditions which make one literally want to crawl out of their own skin. The condition can be painful and is often associated with inflammation, itchiness/burning/stinging, cracked skin, scaly plaques, and even bleeding. Fortunately, cannabis has been found to treat pain and inflammation in many studies, which means that it stands to reason that cannabis can help those with psoriasis as well. Let’s find out what the research has to say as well as which products are the best for psoriasis.
The Story of Jim Snedden
Jim Snedden shared his story about how he turned to cannabidiol (CBD) for his psoriasis. The 55-year-old man first noticed that his legs were very dry and itchy in 2005. The itch soon spread to his hands and many would have dismissed this as eczema since it’s a skin condition characterized by being itchy. Snedden explained, “I was waking up all bloody because I was digging at it”, in other words, he scratched himself until he bled.
By 2012, Snedden reportedly developed psoriatic arthritis (PsA), which he described as a “destructive disease”. He went on to explain that there were days where he couldn’t pick things up and that “I’m dropping things all day because my fingers hurt really bad”. Snedden was consuming prescription opioids to manage the pain but naturally, his tolerance built up and they stopped working. Snedden’s daughter, who had fibromyalgia, finally got him to consider CBD in 2018. Fibromyalgia may belong to an entirely different category of conditions, however, it also involves significant levels of pain throughout the body. Snedden did not only consider but ended up using CBD, to which he stated that “It did a lot of good”.
Research Supporting CBD for Psoriasis
While there may not be published studies specifically on the efficacy of CBD for psoriasis, UC Davis Health stated that “it is a very reasonable assumption that the potential beneficial psychological (e.g. anxiety reduction) and anti-inflammatory effects of cannabinoids could help alleviate the disease burden associated with psoriatic disease”. The National Psoriasis Foundation (NPF) supports this by stating that “there’s certainly enough mechanistic data to argue that [CBD] makes sense for psoriasis” and that “CBD has demonstrated its potential for use in several skin-related disorders, including psoriatic disease”.
According to NPF’s Dr. Friedman, CBD has the ability to bind to receptors in the body that are part of the human cannabinoid system, called endocannabinoids, that can influence pain, itch, and mechanisms of inflammation” and that “we know that when CBD binds to the CB2 [cannabinoid receptor type 2] as well as other receptors, it can be involved in not just anti-inflammatory activity, but it can facilitate an array of activities that resolve inflammation. It can stimulate the secretion and recruitment of cells that are important for removing debris and allowing for proper skin maturation and healing”.
Based on everything we know about CBD and despite the lack of research on CBD specifically for psoriasis, consumers can expect a reduction in pain, inflammation as well as benefiting from the smoothing ingredients in topical cannabis products. Persons suffering from psoriasis can also expect reduced anxiety and stress as well as boosted efforts to restore homeostasis in the body.
Top CBD Products for Psoriasis
Since psoriasis is a skin condition, consumers should consider oil, balm, topical and alike CBD products as opposed to smoking and oral consumption. The following products have been deemed the best for psoriasis on the basis of what they contain, their means of application as well as based on patient preferences.
Calm by Wellness- CBD Lavender Lotion
Calm by Wellness CBD Lavender Lotion contains purposefully selected ingredients to best soothe your skin. The lotion is 100% organic, broad-spectrum, and contains 200mg of CBD per bottle. It also contains aloe leaf juice, coconut oil, and lavender. While the aloe leaf juice and coconut oil will assist in moisturizing your skin, lavender can contribute to pain relief, improving circulation, and has even been found to be effective against psoriasis.
Green Roads Full Spectrum Oil
Psoriasis flare-ups can be especially bad and one may want to consider a product with a stronger CBD content. Green Roads is an award-winning brand and offers a variety of CBD oils for consumers to choose from based on their preferences and needs. However, when you consider the fact that their full-spectrum CBD oil offers all the cannabinoids and 50mg of CBD per ml, there’s no wonder the product is recommended for flare-ups. This strong oil was formulated by pharmacists, is vegan and gluten-free as well as having no artificial flavors.
Saint Jane Luxury Beauty Serum
Medical News Today reported that in a study of 100 consumers, 100% reported improvement in dry skin, with 99% also reporting a reduction in irritation. This is likely attributed to the fact that Saint Jane Luxury Beauty Serum contains jojoba oil, full-spectrum cannabis, sea buckthorn, and many other ingredients which pack this product with hundreds of nutrients and means of something affected skin.
Spruce Topical Cream
Not only is this cream from Spruce lab grade and third-party tested, but it is also 100% natural with zero pesticides and significantly low THC quantity. Spruce Tropical CBD cream contains 300mg of CBD per 2 oz. jar and can be applied as often as needed. Reviews from customers of the product suggest that this cream is highly effective, smells like evergreen, and may even make “you feel like an immortal superhuman that feels no pain”.
Steam Botanicals Shampoo and Conditioner
Psoriasis can present on the scalp, for which it is recommended that you use Steam Botanicals Shampoo and Conditioner. While the shampoo is aimed at “balancing your scalp” it is also said to soothe dry scalp, remove build-up as well as repair and moisturize your hair “from roots to tips”. The conditioner is said to be “exceptionally soothing for dry scalp” along with strengthening your hair. Both the shampoo and conditioner contain 200mg of CBD in 240ml and have raving reviews.
Vertly Relief Lotion
While this CBD lotion may contain lavender too, it also contains aloe vera, arnica, and magnesium. The Vertly Relief Lotion harnessed “the benefits of Arnica flower (antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory), nourishing shea butter, healing magnesium, organic essential oils, and full spectrum hemp extract”. Need I say more?
If you would like to read more about why broad- and full-spectrum cannabis products are so important, be sure to check out this article on the entourage effect.
Psoriasis can be taxing on a person, not just physically but including the stigma and psychological consequences of a visible skin condition. It is important to understand that there are alternative therapeutic options for those who are struggling to find relief, much like Mr. Snedden. Equally important is knowing that there are many options to choose from when looking at using cannabis to alleviate your conditions, in other words, smoking is not the only way to get relief when you need it. If you have used any of those products above, we would love to hear about your experience in the comment section below.