How to Create the Ultimate Self-Care Routine Using CBD

However you take care of yourself, CBD’s effects on body and mind can be a powerful tool during me-time.

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Grace Han/Thrillist
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Self care can take many forms. It may bring to mind images of face masks and bubble baths, but it’s ultimately about dedicating time to taking care of oneself. Paying attention to and taking care of one’s mental and physical wellbeing can help prevent potential health issues, and maintaining recuperative moments throughout your day and week can contribute to a healthier work-life balance. And yes, sometimes a particularly trying day calls for an indulgent spa night in. However you take care of yourself, CBD’s effects on body and mind can be a powerful tool during me-time. 

As the scientific research organization Project CBD puts it, “scientists refer to CBD as a promiscuous’ compound because it confers therapeutic benefits in many different ways while tapping into how we function physiologically and biologically on a deep level.” Preclinical research and some clinical studies have shown that when consumed, CBD has strong anti-depressant qualities, as well as how it contributes to a healthy endocannabinoid system, which promotes healthy functioning of bodily systems like sleep cycles and muscle repair. That sort of well-rounded versatility is what’s made simple CBD oil tinctures so popular. A mere dropper-full, taken orally straight on the tongue or mixed into tea can simultaneously mellow strained nerves and promote overall health. Brands like Xula take things a step further, harmonizing other medicinal herbs with their menu of CBD tinctures for specific needs for those experiencing their menstrual cycle, menopause, or pregnancy. Those who aren’t wild about the flavor and texture of oil in their tea can always opt for swallowable pill versions like Sera Labs’ CBD supplements.

Topically, CBD can be effective for physical discomforts like nerve or joint issues, and on the surface layers of the skin, the compound’s anti-inflammatory properties make it an ideal ingredient for skincare. The presence of terpenes or non-intoxicating acid cannabinoids like CBD seem to increase skin permeation, meaning cannabis/hemp derived cannabinoids help other ingredients work more effectively. No matter the enhanced permeation, cannabinoids still cannot enter the bloodstream. So these products will never get you high, mentally. They won’t have a “calming effect,” but they can help moisturizing and muscle-relaxing ingredients to penetrate more effectively, as well as bring down any inflammation—the most scientifically proven effect of this cannabinoid, and the root cause of most skin concerns.

Face masks and bubble baths may be the shallow poster child of wellness routines, but you know what? A face mask = 20 dedicated minutes to you chilling the f**k out. Not all of us can get ourselves to hold still long enough to try meditation or breathing exercises, so if making time for a fun, 20-minute facial once a week is more feasible, so be it. Get your zen when you can, where you can. Regarding those “frivolous” bubble baths—a good soak has served as an accessible, effective wellness practice for centuries. The anti-inflammatory effects of CBD make it a dream ingredient for bath salts, enhancing the muscle-repairing environment of a classic epsom salt soak. Homebody can barely keep their popular, small-batch CBD salts in stock, while beloved brands like Vertly play with different recipes that add skin-repairing ingredients like calendula extract and colloidal oatmeal to their salt blends.

Brands like Saint Jane and Apothecanna were among the OG topical-makers taking CBD creams to the next level, taking a note from luxury beauty and using premium ingredients for an elevated topical experience, and the latter innovating a variety of elevated applications from personal lubricant oil to spray-on pain relief. Yes, a soothing intimacy oil can be a key element to a healthy self-care regimen, and CBD’s anti-inflammatory properties can actually come in quite handy when self-caring with a partner. Oshihana’s line of sexual and vaginal wellness products put that channel of self-care front and center, using additional cannabinoids like CBG to enhance sensation.

2020 raised our collective blood pressure a few points, and then some. Don’t underestimate the power of a regular dose of calm in your day. Whatever routes you end up taking on the path towards balance in mind and body, here are the multipurpose CBD tinctures, salves, skin and bodycare products designed to bring you chill.

Lauren Yoshiko is a Portland-based writer and co-host of Broccoli Magazine's podcast, Broccoli Talk. She was among the first journalists to cover the commerce and culture of cannabis starting in 2014 and her work has since appeared in Willamette WeekForbesRolling Stone, and Broccoli Magazine, among others. Follow her on Instagram at @laurenyoshiko for Portland breakfast sandwich recs, stoned nail art, and moderate cat content.
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