STOP press! Sales of cannabidiol oil (CBD) have been rocketing since Holland & Barrett became the first UK high-street store to stock it this year and, according to the Cannabis Trades Association, the number of British users has doubled in the past 12 months, from 125,000 to 250,000.
Shake off any perceptions of stoners getting high off their own beauty supply, though. CBD oil — derived from the flowers of the cannabis plant — is now legal in the UK but must contain less than 0.05 per cent of THC, the psychoactive component in cannabis. In other words, using CBD will not make you stoned.
Last month, the country’s first CBD boutique opened (in Camden, of course) called LDN CBD. It’s a chic holistic space without a bong or a cannabis leaf beanie hat in sight and sells not only supplements and tinctures but beauty products and candles. There’s even talk of body treatments being offered here in the future.
‘CBD oil contains anti-inflammatory and anti-acne properties, which could be beneficial in the dermatology and skincare arena, specifically, for conditions such as acne, eczema and psoriasis,’ says Dr Rupert Critchley, GP and founder of Viva skincare clinics.
CBD helps treat acne by regulating oil production in the skin, which in turn suppresses breakouts and has antibiotic properties. Independent US studies have found the soothing and anti-inflammatory features of CBD oil mean it could also be a key component in hydrating and anti-ageing products.
‘There is much interest around CBD oil,’ says Dr Alexis Granite, consultant dermatologist at the Cadogan Clinic. ‘The small studies that have so far been published are very promising. Larger studies need to be undertaken to truly understand the efficacy but it’s certainly an area of great interest.’