Ever wondered what the difference between CBD & hemp seed oil is & where they come from? Read on to discover the difference & find out why it matters...
What’s the difference between cannabis & hemp?
Hemp and cannabis are two varieties of the same plant species; Cannabis sativa.
Cannabis is an ancient plant cultivated for health and recreational purposes, most famously for the “high” which the psychoactive compound tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) contained can cause its users. Cannabis also includes cannabinoids which are being further researched for their health benefits.
Hemp was planted for commercial purposes and stalk, leaves, seeds and buds are used in all sort of different products. The THC content must be under 0.3% in order to qualify as hemp seed oil.
What properties of hemp or CBD (cannabidiol) make it desirable to add to skincare?
Both hemp seed oil and the cannabidiol-rich cannabis (CBD) oil have already been researched to share certain skincare benefits. Hemp seed oil in particular has shown non-pore clogging skin hydration and anti-inflammatory properties (e.g. to help with acne). Of course they are also full of antioxidants to counteract free-radical damage and therefore (skin) ageing. The high essential fatty acid and cell-supporting balance of Omega 3 and Omega 6 content of these oils, also provide the skin with nutrients.
Why is there a growing trend in products which feature CBD or hemp seed oil?
People are becoming increasingly conscious of what they are putting in and on their bodies and more clued up and curious about the benefits of naturally derived, yet active ingredients, as opposed to those which are synthetically produced. While the hemp plant has traditionally also had many other production purposes including for clothing, food, and materials, it is more likely the “forbidden” recreational history of cannabis which makes these ingredients more enticing for people to want to try. Especially with the recent New Zealand cannabis referendum, Kiwis in particular will have heard of these ingredients, done their research and be curious to test them.
What should you be mindful of when shopping for products with hemp seed or CBD oil?
It is essential that you understand whether you are using a product containing hemp seed oil or CBD oil, and the effects each ingredient can have.
Hemp seed oil aka cannabis sativa seed oil (as used in the Biotulin range) contains mostly Omega fatty acids, no cannabinoids (traces if any), THC under 0.3% and is therefore safe for everyone to use. Whereas CBD oil – due to its rich cannabidiol content – can bind to the brain's cannabinoid receptors when absorbed through the skin. Thereby not only affecting the skin, but also a person's mood, behaviour or sleep.
How do I know whether the product contains CBD or hemp seed oil?
How to spot the difference: look out for the "seed" in the INCI (ingredients) list; hemp seed oil is listed as cannabis sativa seed oil (e.g. Biotulin range), while CBD will show as PCR hemp extracts, cannabidiol, full spectrum hemp, or hemp oil.