Take the benefits of massage to the next level with CBD massage oil. Read our shopping guide and our top choices for the best CBD massage oils on the market.
Can we all agree that someone telling you to “relax” when you’re feeling stressed is the most unhelpful piece of advice? If you’re particularly overwhelmed or stressed with what’s going on in your life right now, a massage might be exactly what you need to reset.
The benefits of massage therapy include improved circulation, pain relief, reducing stress, and anxiety and supporting a better night’s sleep.
To make this self-care treatment even better, look to CBD massage oil.
CBD or cannabidiol is a non-psychoactive cannabis-derived compound that boasts many uses.
It works by interacting with a messaging system called the endocannabinoid system (ECS) that regulates vital functions from stress, immune response, pain perception, hormones, and sleep.
The purpose of massage oils is to reduce the friction on the skin while performing a deep tissue massage. Good massage oils should have a smooth and easy glide and eventually absorb into the skin to nourish and protect it.
Here are some of the benefits of adding CBD extract to massage oil formulas.
Massage therapy is a natural, drug-free, and non-invasive way to alleviate chronic and acute pain in the muscles and joints.
Massage helps to relax muscles and ligaments that may be holding tension and causing pain from overcompensating use to nerve compression.
CBD oil can support these massage benefits towards relieving pain. CBD is a natural anti-inflammatory and analgesic compound. CBD interacts with the endocannabinoid receptors in the skin to inhibit pain transmission and reduce inflammation.
Delayed onset muscle soreness or DOMS is the muscle aches you experience a day or two after a strenuous workout. It comes from the stress you put on your muscles when exercising so that they can rebuild even stronger to better withstand the demands of your workouts.
The problem is that DOMS can make everyday activities and getting back to the gym difficult, as your whole body feels sore and aching. A post-workout massage with CBD massage oil’s added benefits may help alleviate the severity of delayed onset muscle soreness.
Massage helps to circulate blood flow to the affected area. The topical CBD application may help promote healing and alleviate any discomfort in the muscles.
One of the main reasons people seek out CBD is to support a sense of relaxation and calmness.
CBD in topical formulas can help to alleviate pain, which can help you feel more relaxed, but if you want to further the benefits of stress relief, we recommend consuming CBD too.
A massage with CBD massage oil releases feel-good hormones such as endorphins into your bloodstream, which helps combat high-stress levels and reduce pain.
Massaging CBD to an area provides you with localized support where it’s applied.
If you’re someone who is particularly sensitive to the effects of CBD, applying it topically could be your answer. When you massage CBD oil into the skin, it does not enter the bloodstream. Instead, the cannabinoids interact with nearby endocannabinoid receptors to exert their effects.
Massage oils often contain skin-nourishing ingredients that help to promote skin health. CBD, along with ingredients like jojoba oil, coconut oil, almond oil, and apricot kernel oil, is well absorbed by the skin and makes for a great vehicle for which CBD to enter the body.
CBD’s anti-inflammatory properties can also help to soothe skin irritations such as mosquito bites, burns, psoriasis, and eczema.
We always take a close look at the ingredient list in CBD massage oils, hemp sourcing, and brand safety and quality assurance practices.
Be wary of brands that make too good to be true health claims. It’s usually a red flag for us. CBD manufacturers aren’t well regulated by the FDA to make any health claims. If you see a brand of CBD massage oil that promises to cure or treat a condition, steer clear.
With that out of the way, let’s talk about what you should look for in a CBD massage oil.
The CBD industry is already a bit of a Wild West as it is — it’s a new industry with lots of opportunities for growth, but there are many brands looking to make a quick buck off of unsuspecting customers with shady business practices.
This is even more evident in topical CBD products. Since you don’t ingest lotions, massage oils, or salves, brands don’t have to tell you how much CBD is in the product. We’ve come across brands adding a dusting of CBD extract to run-of-the-mill topical formulas and charging a premium price for it just because it has CBD.
For CBD to be effective for pain relief and relaxation, it needs to be applied in high concentrations. When shopping for a CBD massage oil, make sure the brand lists the CBD content.
Typically, you want a product with at least 5 mg of CBD/mL of massage oil fluid — the more, the better.
Full-spectrum CBD is considered the best CBD extract because it contains a wide range of naturally occurring cannabinoids and terpenes.
CBD isn’t the only hemp-derived compound with benefits. Cannabinoids such as THC, CBG, CBN, and CBC provide their own set of benefits and support the effectiveness of CBD in the endocannabinoid system.
While it’s true that full-spectrum CBD extract contains traces of THC (up to 0.3%), it’s not enough to elicit any intoxicating effects, and topical products don’t enter the bloodstream to trigger a positive drug test.
If you live in a region with zero THC tolerance, you may want to consider broad-spectrum CBD extract before reaching for a CBD isolate product, as broad-spectrum extracts still contain some cannabinoids but have completely eliminated traces of THC.
The hemp source is a crucial factor in determining the quality of the final product.
The products that made it onto our list are American-farmed hemp. The USA has high agricultural standards, and some places don’t take their hemp farming as seriously.
Contaminated soil, pesticides, and environment can affect the overall quality of the hemp crops and the cannabinoids it produces. In fact, hemp is so susceptible to its growing environment that traces of pesticides and heavy metals from the soil can be detected in the final extract.
When shopping for any CBD product — massage oil, capsules, or vape oil, always make sure the brand is transparent about its hemp sourcing practices.
Unfortunately, we can’t depend on CBD manufacturers to always tell the truth, which is why third-party lab testing has become an industry standard, but not a mandatory practice, that reputable brands are part-taking in an effort to provide customers transparency regarding their CBD products.
These brands will take a sample of their products off to an independent lab to check for their cannabinoid potency and contaminants.
Before adding any CBD product to your cart, check to make sure the product has recent lab tests done from an accredited lab.
While CBD and other cannabinoids lend themselves to many health and wellness benefits, you want to make sure the massage oil formula itself is of high quality.
Check the ingredient list to make sure you aren’t allergic to any ingredients.
You may also want to check to see if the CBD brand added any other therapeutic ingredients, such as skin-nourishing ingredients, to the formula to improve the massage oil’s efficacy in protecting the skin and delivering CBD.
Some of our favorite ingredients include jojoba oil, apricot seed oil, vitamin E, coconut oil, and grape seed oil.
Determining how much CBD massage oil you should use is a personal affair as the effects and doses of CBD can vary from person to person. When it comes to topical products, it will also depend on the type of relief you’re looking for and the area you’re working on.
For example, you’ll likely need a lot more CBD massage oil to cover your back versus your neck.
With massage oil, you’ll want to use as much as feels comfortable in your hands to work into the skin. If you apply too much, the product will take longer to absorb; if you don’t use enough, there will still be too much friction between the hands and the massaged area.
If you’re feeling significant discomfort, you may want to consider combining CBD massage oil with supplemented CBD either by eating it or smoking it.
CBD is a non-psychoactive compound. Even if you purchase a CBD massage oil made with full-spectrum hemp extract, it can only contain up to 0.3% THC, which isn’t enough to get you intoxicated.
Moreover, since CBD massage oil is applied to your skin, it will only affect the endocannabinoid receptors in the skin. Only trace amounts of the extract make it into the bloodstream. Even if you used high-THC massage oil, you’re not likely to feel high from using it on your skin.
CBD is a safe and well-tolerated compound when ingested or smoked, even at high doses.
As a topical application, it never enters your bloodstream to provoke the main side-effects of CBD, which include nausea, drowsiness, and an upset stomach.
The only thing you want to look out for in massage oil is skin irritation from the CBD extract or the other ingredients. Try testing the product on a small patch on your arm before massaging a larger area to make sure you don’t have any allergic reactions.
CBD massage oils can cost anywhere from $50–$130 per bottle. The price will depend on the size, how much CBD it contains, and the other ingredients.
It can be difficult to compare price points of CBD products from one brand to the next, but one way we’ve found to do this is by comparing the amount of CBD extract in each bottle and dividing it by the cost to get a cost per mg number.
Keep in mind that this only gives us a rough value of the cost of the CBD in the product. It doesn’t consider the other ingredients, testing, packaging, or any other production factors.
There are a lot of benefits of massage therapy, but one way to boost the overall benefits of massage therapy is to use CBD massage oils.
If you want a TL DR version of this article, here’s the gist:
We’ve rounded up three of our favorite CBD massage oils on the market at the top of this article, but if you’re off to do a bit of shopping on your own, we hope these tips are useful in guiding you through your shopping experience.