Over the past 20 years, the market for cannabinoid-infused topical products has exploded from a curiosity to a mainstream staple. Hundreds of CBD companies now offer CBD topicals.
This explosion of interest happened for good reason. Whether for skin conditions or pain in muscles and joints, CBD topicals work, according to anecdotal reports of consumers who swear by them. How did CBD creams, lotions, and salves suddenly become the next must-have hemp-derived cannabinoid product? It didn’t happen overnight.
Topically applied cannabis products have a very long history. Understanding that history can help a consumer become better informed as to what products might be right for them.
A brief history of CBD topicals
In the ancient Near East, cannabis-infused topicals like myrrh were popular for centuries. But these products did not make it into modern Europe, and over time the knowledge of their value was lost.
The rediscovery of cannabis topicals began in 2003 in Nova Scotia, Canada. That’s where an engineer named Rick Simpson gave the world Rick Simpson Oil. Also called RSO for short, it’s a topical preparation made from full strength cannabis with high levels of THC.
Rick Simpson wasn’t the first person to apply cannabis topically, but he soon became the face of it for the contemporary western world. From his work making RSO, a rush of imitation topicals flooded the medical marijuana market in states where that is legal.
When the Farm Bill passed in 2014, that led to a rush of CBD topical products across America. The first round of CBD topical products were salves and balms. They were oil based, blended with bees wax, and they left a greasy residue after use. These CBD salves had their supporters. But they weren’t good enough. (Read Full Article)