CBD Skincare: Benefits and Best Products in Australia

A new and exciting innovation in topical skin products is the introduction of CBD skincare. These are topically applied skin products that are infused with the CBD cannabinoid. They’ve become hugely popular in places like Australia (now they’re legal) for helping to soothe the skin and enhance its vitality. CBD is a natural compound from hemp with valuable properties as a topical agent for skin revitalisation. 

When absorbed into the skin, it provides deep anti-inflammatory, soothing, moisturising and even sebum-balancing effects. Plus, topical CBD is non-comedogenic and won’t cause irritation or oiliness from excess sebum. Learn why more people and cosmetic brands are flocking to CBD skincare as the next big thing in skin health. We’ll get you up to speed on the top benefits of CBD skincare that have made it ubiquitous in people’s daily skin routines. Plus, you’ll learn about Australia’s best CBD skincare products and how to use them.

CBD and the Skin

To begin with, it’s helpful to understand how CBD works with the skin and why this matters. 

Across the body, the skin serves as the primary barrier between our internal and external environments. It’s a protective shield against invasive threats and allows for absorbing essential vitamins (for example, vitamin D3 from sunlight).

The skin’s tissue and glands contain special receptors that can absorb cannabinoids such as CBD. These receptors are part of the body’s naturally occurring endocannabinoid system, which has evolved to use these compounds from hemp.

Specifically, the skin is abundant in type 2 cannabinoid receptors (or ‘CB2’), which can be found in the following parts of the skin organ:

  • Sebaceous, Apocrine and Eccrine Glands (which control skin oil regulation)
  • Layers of the epidermis tissue and keratinocytes (skin cells)
  • Skin immune cells, such as Epidermal dendritic cells

CBD works topically by activating these endocannabinoid system pathways across skin regions.

Remember, though, that CBD is rarely used on the skin in pure form. If entirely isolated, the CBD cannabinoid is a fine powder. However, powders are hard for the skin to absorb because they are solid.

Diffusing CBD extract into gels, creams or other liquid mediums significantly improves its topical absorption potential. This is why most CBD skincare products use a ‘base’ medium like a moisturising cream or oil.

Notably, CBD skincare has no psychoactive properties or potential to cause intoxicating effects. These result from consuming the THC cannabinoid, which gets you ‘high’. In contrast, topically applied CBD has zero mentally stimulating or consciousness-affecting properties. It’s drawn from industrial hemp in Australia, which is cultivated to contain under 0.3% THC concentrations.

Benefits of CBD Skincare

When CBD is absorbed into the skin, it delivers multi-targeted therapeutic effects that can help relieve skin conditions and promote it’s overall health.

The benefits of CBD skincare include:

  • Lowering inflammation in the skin (CBD is anti-inflammatory)
  • Reducing oxidative stress as an antioxidant
  • Preventing and correcting acne symptoms
  • Slowing the aging and wrinkling process
  • Soothing irritable, sensitive skin
  • Combatting conditions like psoriasis, dermatitis and Eczema.

Let’s detail each of these areas in more depth.


CBD functions as a potent anti-inflammatory agent in the skin. It can relieve symptoms of chronic skin inflammation like redness, soreness, swelling, or irritation. How does the cannabinoid achieve this? The answer lies in its interactions with the immune system. CBD works on CB2 receptor sites in the immune system through its endocannabinoid system activation. When it does this, the activity of skin immune cells is altered. 

Dendritic immune cells in the skin produce less inflammatory compounds and become more resilient to overactivity. In turn, the skin’s inflammatory response can be soothed and normalised. This is how CBD skincare delivers its anti-inflammatory benefits. Because so many skin disorders relate to a dysregulated inflammatory response, CBD can help with various types of these unsightly conditions. Its anti-inflammatory efficacy has been demonstrated to be greater than some NSAIDs like aspirin. CBD’s deeply calming potential for the skin is perhaps its most important property as a topical. 


Beyond lowering skin inflammation, CBD also works as an antioxidant for skin cells (keratinocytes). This means it’s capable of neutralising free radicals that attack the skin. These molecules are the source of oxidative stress and microscopic damage to skin cells. They’re produced by sun radiation, pollution and toxins. Free radicals reduce the skin’s longevity. Exposure to them causes more blemishes, damage and aging. Over time, free radicals will:

  • Accelerate aging
  • Cause wrinkling and skin lines
  • Change skin complexion
  • Contribute to dry, flaky, irritated skin

Preventing free radical molecules from causing disarray in your skin is vital to slowing aging. Using CBD skincare can assist here. It prevents free radical damage and shields the skin from oxidative stress. Think of it as an extra barrier or defensive layer that helps to reinforce your skin, keeping it supple.

Acne Mitigation

A lesser-known advantage of CBD skincare is its capacity to help manage acne skin conditions. These conditions cause excess skin oil (sebum) to build, which results in pimple breakouts due to skin bacteria. New research has shown that CBD helps to improve sebum regulation, preventing the oiliness that leads to acne. This is thought to occur via the CB2 cannabinoid receptors in the sebaceous skin glands, which secrete sebum. Modulating these glands’ regulation helps prevent under or over-production of skin oil. A study on the capacity of CBD as a sebum-regulating agent revealed this property. It showed CBD prevented excessive sebum production, making it a novel treatment for acne vulgaris.

In addition to balancing the skin’s hormones and oil to prevent acne, CBD skincare kills acne bacteria. The cannabinoid has demonstrated antibacterial properties, also seen in cannabinoids like CBG. Because acne is bacterial, CBD is a powerful natural mitigation tool. Using it daily will prevent conditions that allow the acne bacteria to thrive on the skin and wreak havoc. In other words, regular CBD skincare use is a preventative measure for acne, reducing the likelihood and severity of breakouts. 


Most people don’t consider CBD’s hydrating, moisturising potential when considering it for skincare purposes. Yet these qualities are part of what makes it so unique as a topical. Because it’s from the hemp plant, CBD contains many of the plant’s rich, skin-nourishing nutrients like:

  • Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids
  • Alpha and gamma-linolenic acids
  • Polyunsaturated fats
  • Natural antioxidants like polyphenols

These healthy fats keep the skin’s lipids and moisture levels healthy. They’re crucial in maintaining skin hydration and keeping its lipid barrier strong. 

Rejuvenating fatty acids in CBD skincare alleviates skin dryness, replenishes the skin’s nutrients, and improves complexion. These products are enriched with unique compounds that magnify these revitalising skin benefits. For instance, CBD skincare often incorporates soothing, antioxidative agents like:

  • Hyaluronic acid
  • Vitamin e
  • Glycerin

These ingredients synergise perfectly with CBD, complementing its absorption and benefits.

Anti-aging and Wrinkle Prevention

Another benefit of CBD skincare is keeping the skin youthful in appearance and health. Its intensively antioxidative and rejuvenating powers support:

  • Wrinkle and fine-line prevention
  • Slowed aging from free radical damage
  • Reduced blemishes or age spots
  • Reinforced collagen strength

While CBD won’t stop the skin’s aging process, it can help to slow its progression

Regular use of CBD skincare products will keep you looking younger for longer. Think better skin elasticity, colour, and suppleness.

Many of these outcomes result from CBD’s ability to block skin cells from being degraded due to environmental factors. Although these metabolic benefits occur at the cellular level (which our eyes can’t see), they will eventually be visible over a long period.

It’s important to note that while CBD is excellent for slowing skin aging and wrinkling, you should use it with other topical agents for the best effects. For instance, Vitamin E (tocopherol) and Vitamin C are each powerful at bolstering long-term skin appearance.

Calming Skin Irritation

Due to its anti-inflammatory and moisturising properties, CBD skincare is ideal for irritable, sensitive skin types. It’s incredible at relaxing and soothing the skin of people who have skin allergies, rosacea, or dermatitis. Many find it lowers their skin’s reactivity to allergens like dust or grass. This supports the prevention and treatment of redness or itchiness. Daily application of CBD skincare offers cooling, relieving powers for irritated skin regions. Importantly, it’s very gentle and well-tolerated on all skin types too. Incidences of skin allergies to CBD itself are almost unheard of.

Mitigating Psoriasis and Eczema

People who have chronic skin disorders like psoriasis or Eczema are increasingly using CBD skincare as a supportive treatment. It can be a godsend in mitigating the irritating, uncomfortable symptoms these conditions cause. When used for psoriasis or Eczema, CBD skincare can:

  • Help to prevent psoriasis redness and irritation
  • Reduce skin build-ups and flakiness
  • Mitigate psoriasis dryness and re-hydrate the skin layers
  • Suppress itchiness
  • Prevent rashes and red skin areas

Because psoriasis is an autoimmune problem, CBD won’t be able to cure it. Yet it’s ideal as a topical agent to prevent, fight and even reverse some of the skin problems it causes. This, too, applies to the efficacy of CBD skincare for Eczema. As both of these skin disorders can ‘flare up’ or be triggered by environmental factors (like allergens) or stress, CBD is ideal as a preventative aid. Even if a flare-up occurs while using CBD topically, it’s unlikely to be as severe, extensive or long-lasting. 

Using CBD Skincare

It is easy to use CBD-infused skincare as part of your everyday protocol for skin wellbeing. However, there are some items to consider before you begin topically applying CBD products. Let’s take a look at using CBD skincare the right way.

Types of Topical CBD Products

While CBD is best known in oil mediums (CBD oil), this product is rarely used as a topical skincare treatment. Today, you can find CBD products specifically designed for use on the skin. Each is purposefully designed and formulated to maximise CBD absorption while containing nutrients that enhance skin wellbeing. Most are interchangeable in terms of their overall effects. Pick one that most aligns with your goals and needs.

Common CBD skincare product types include:

  • CBD Creams (or ‘lotions’) are general-purpose skin health remedies. These products diffuse CBD into calming lotions that support moisturisation and skin nourishment. Most can be used anywhere on the body, too.
  • CBD Serums (facial oils) are more concentrated, liquid CBD skincare items primarily used on the face. Because they’re stronger, you only need a small amount of serum when applying. Serums are great for facial rosacea, skin blemishes or anti-wrinkle purposes.
  • CBD Balms (or ‘salves’) are thicker and paste-like than CBD creams. As such, they offer an excellent defence against the elements and can be used as lip balms. Balms are handy in targeting dehydrated skin or inflammation from psoriasis or Eczema. 
  • CBD Masks are designed to be set on the face for a period before being peeled off. They work similarly to CBD serums, designed for facial use and reducing wrinkles or lines.  

Each topical product works differently and may need a distinct application approach.

Usage Steps

Here are the general steps in applying CBD skincare to maximise its topical benefits and effectiveness.

  • Clean and Dry: Before using CBD skincare, ensure your skin is clean and dry. Dust, dirt or moisture can prevent your product from being applied or absorbed correctly, so ensure your skin is clear. Preparing the skin helps you absorb more CBD, boosting its efficacy.
  • Read Label: Once prepared, you should carefully read your product’s label and instructions on usage. Not all CBD topicals are the same. Strength, formulation, and ingredients can vary significantly. These need to be factored into your product usage, and specific guidelines should exist.
  • Patch Test: run a quick patch test on a small skin region when trying out a CBD skincare item for the first time. Place the topical on an area of skin that won’t be visible, like the thigh. It’s an excellent way to confirm you aren’t allergic, sensitive or intolerant to a product. This step is particularly vital if you have easily irritated skin. Sometimes, adverse reactions don’t appear for up to a day. As such, we recommend leaving the patch for up to 12-24 hours to verify this. 

From here, you’ll know whether your skin tolerates your product and whether it is pleasing to use. At this stage, different products will need varying approaches to applying them. Your usage here should also factor in your goals for applying CBD skincare, such as targeting relief from Eczema.

Topical Application Tips

Some usage tips:

  • Tone First: An excellent preparatory step is to once over your dry skin area with a refreshing toner. Toners help to pre-moisturise the skin, further cleanse it, and aid with overall permeability. They also serve as pH and oil-balancing agents, reinforcing the right skin conditions for using CBD skincare.
  • Serums: When applying CBD serums, use them before other topical products. Remember that serums are concentrated, so you only need minimal amounts for solid results. Other moisturisers or CBD lotions are typically layered after a serum, which serves as a base.
  • Gently Massage: CBD-infused products should be carefully and gently worked into the skin like other topical products. Rub your applied product in small circles to aid with this. Ensure they’re thoroughly absorbed into the skin’s layers and disappear to complete the application.
  • Facials: For face treatments such as CBD masks or facial oils, be extra cautious with the quantity of product you use and where you place it. The skin on the face is often extra sensitive, and the last thing you want is unsightly rashes or reactions to your item. Avoid getting anything in your eyes, too. It’s unlikely to cause problems but may be uncomfortable.

Remember that you can also use CBD skincare products as body lotions, hand creams, lip balms, or massage oils. Be conservative with how much you use in each case, and ensure you follow usage instructions.

Side Effects

Like any other topical product, CBD-infused products can cause adverse reactions in some people. The possibility of irritating reactions underscores the importance of patch-testing your skin before using a new skincare product. Doing this can catch any potential risks or irritation from an item you might not have expected. While patch testing is a prudent risk mitigation technique, sometimes, reactions to products still occur.

Some of the possible side effects from CBD skin care include:

  • Rashes or blemishes
  • Redness and irritation
  • Itchiness
  • Skin dryness or oiliness 

These reactions are often caused by the skin becoming accustomed to topical products. However, you should cease product usage if it lasts more than a day. You could have allergies to a product if severe irritation occurs. Some CBD skincare can contain harsh chemical additives or toxins that cause these issues. Exploring alternative products or treatment paths may be necessary. 

Checking in with your dermatologist is an essential first step if you have a skin disorder that you’re working to remedy. Often, problems like Eczema stem from genetic or environmental factors that CBD won’t help much with. CBD topicals may cause more harm than good in these instances. Avoid these risks and consult first with your skin doctor.

Improving Your Results

There are a few usage considerations that’ll help you optimise your approach and results with CBD skincare.

  • Be Consistent: improvements in dryness, complexion, irritability, or inflammation don’t usually happen immediately with CBD topicals (although this is possible). The best way to use these skin products is consistently and methodically.
  • Everyday application offers the fastest relief from conditions like psoriasis. Using your topical a few times per day is preferable here. However, this decision should match your lifestyle, daily routine, and desired goals.
  • Start Small: Another tip is to avoid using many products at once. Combining CBD topicals can make it hard to understand what is working for you and how useful they are. Trying out one product at a time when beginning makes it much easier to identify which items work and are best for your skin type.

Approaches for Different Skin Problems

Different skin health aims also call for varying product choices.

  • Acne responds best to lighter-weight emulsions like CBD creams or serums, which won’t block the pores or cause oiliness. Salves can be a problem here due to their viscosity. To magnify effectiveness, look for a CBD acne cream that contains other acne-fighting ingredients like Benzoyl peroxide or salicylic acid.
  • Wrinkle Prevention: You’ll want something gentle for the face to prevent wrinkles and slow skin aging. CBD masks or serums are your best bet to reduce facial fine lines, boost complexion, and eliminate age spots. Seek formulations with hyaluronic acid or other anti-aging ingredients for the best outcomes.
  • Psoriasis or Eczema: Common skin conditions require heavier-duty CBD skincare products like CBD balm. Combining several product types (once you’re ready) and layer them on for heightened effects is also helpful. Try a few options and work with your dermatologist if you’re targeting a specific chronic skin condition.
  • Irritability: CBD topicals incorporating naturally skin-calming components, such as aloe vera, are great for irritable skin. Jojoba or other similar replenishing plant-based extracts can similarly aid in restoring balance to inflamed, red skin.
  • Dryness: Moisturisers, balms, or CBD lotions are ideal for replenishing, hydrating, and locking moisture. Good products here use non-comedogenic hydrating agents, antioxidative ingredients, and omega-3 or omega-6 fats.

Now that you know how CBD topicals promote your skin’s health, consider some of Australia’s top CBD skincare products.

Best CBD Skincare Products in Australia

Discovering great CBD skincare in Australia can require a bit of hunting. While countless CBD and skincare brands offer topicals infused with CBD today, not all are created equal. Locating top-rated items that are rich in high-quality ingredients that nourish and pamper is vital. Here are a few of the top CBD topical products in Australia.

Top Brands

There are plenty of excellent CBD skincare brands and store options in Australia. Take a look at these as a starting point:

  • Hempme Skincare: One of the best shops for a diverse, balanced range of CBD skincare items is Hempme. This store is renowned for the depth and breadth of its topical CBD range. They’ve got everything from masks, balms, ointments, and cleansers to lighter serums or mists. Their products are perfect for dry skin types and are optimised for hydration.
  • Blessed CBD: Blessed CBD has been on a roll recently with their impressive CBD skin essentials range. Each of these products is full-spectrum and organically formulated for maximum anti-inflammatory potency. We recommend them if you want to calm a skin condition like dermatitis. The terpenes and minor cannabinoids in Blessed’s balms are ideal for soothing irritated, red, or flaky skin.
  • Endota: While Endota is better known for its spas and traditional skincare products, it has delved into the CBD skincare world. This is excellent news for anyone looking for more premium, luxurious organic CBD topicals. We’d consider its specialty to be anti-aging and wrinkle prevention, with facials or serums being its top products. Endota infuses healing factors, vitamin E, and replenishing antioxidants into its facial formulations. Check them out today if you’re looking to retain your facial complexion.
  • Cannabella: Cannabella is an organic-only brand option for CBD skincare based on the Gold Coast. This Australian name is a good all-rounder, with excellent CBD cream, balm, serum, and mask options. Their big selling point is that they are all-natural and free of additives, which is best for susceptible skin types. Check them out online today.

These are just a tiny sample of the brands and products available in the market. It’s always wise to explore, discover and test other options. So, how do you pick the best products?

Tips on Product Selection

Choosing the correct CBD skincare item for your needs and skin type is a journey. This journey begins with understanding your skin’s specific requirements and potential risks. Here are a few pointers on selecting well:

  • Know Your Skin: The right type of CBD skincare product will vary depending on whether you have sensitive, dry, oily, or balanced skin. Consider your skin history and problems. These should factor into topical choice. For example, if your skin overproduces sebum or is prone to acne breakouts, avoid comedogenic items that can clog your pores. In contrast, dry skin types should seek CBD topicals with hydrating agents. Always keep your skin’s needs at the forefront of your mind when choosing an item.
  • Review Ingredients: When it comes to skincare, product ingredients are everything. Reviewing what’s in your product and whether it suits your skin or condition is critical. Avoid CBD topicals that contain artificial additives or irritating chemicals, which can worsen skin problems. Look for those prioritising natural ingredients enriched with antioxidants like Vitamin E.
  • Understand Strength: The CBD potency of the skincare you’re buying matters. Higher concentrations are sometimes needed for complex skin problems like Eczema or psoriasis, but they’re also pricier. Often, they’re overkill, too. Not everyone needs high-strength CBD creams to improve their skin. Low-strength or diluted products can be equally effective as part of a daily replenishment regime. Take care here to assess the strength of a suitable product with your dermatologist.
  • Lab Testing: As with CBD oils, obtaining a lab report for your CBD skincare product is critical for verifying authenticity, purity, strength, and overall quality. These reports are trustworthy ways to ensure scam skincare items aren’t duping you. Before applying it to your skin, they’ll also tell you what additives or chemicals a topical might contain.

Finally, we’d suggest picking organic-certified brands that ethically source their hemp. Organically farmed hemp has a much lower incidence of contamination with toxins or pesticides, which can infect CBD products made from these plants (including skincare items). Organic CBD products cost more, but the peace of mind you aren’t irritating or harming your skin is undoubtedly worth it.


There’s a good reason CBD skincare is taking the world by storm. Using these replenishing products topically delivers robust benefits for skin health. They’re also great for improving complexion, appearance, and glow. CBD absorbs into the skin tissue and its glands through cannabinoid receptors. This is the main pathway by which it delivers potent anti-inflammatory, antioxidative, anti-aging, and calming properties. When absorbed, the cannabinoid has profoundly nourishing, rejuvenating effects that help protect the skin from damage whilst mitigating wrinkle formation.

Today, vast numbers of skincare brands in Australia infuse CBD into balms, lotions, serums, facials and masks. These combine the best cutting-edge dermatology science from the cosmetic industry with evidence-backed CBD ingredients. Dermatologists, skincare enthusiasts and those looking to age gracefully should rejoice. CBD skincare is here to stay. Plus, topical CBD products in Australia will only get better over time. Try it as part of your everyday skin protocol. But ensure you speak to your dermatologist if you have any skin problems.


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Steve Jacobs Author Headshot

Originally from Byron Bay (Australia), Steve Jacobs is a writer and expert on the world of hemp. His passion for hemp products developed from working with organic hemp cultivators and sustainable skincare brands in Byron. Inspired by these eco-friendly approaches to crafting superb products, Steve realised the opportunity at the intersection of aromatherapy, natural skincare and the magic of hemp. He founded Bondi Hemp to bring this dream to life, bringing rejuvenating hemp extracts, refreshing botanical hemp topicals and revitalising essential oils to everyday Aussies. True to his Byron roots, Steve infuses every drop of his responsibly produced hemp products with the rich terroir of the Byron Region, resulting in unsurpassed quality without harming the earth. Today, Steve continues to write and speak about hemp, skincare, and aromatherapy from his family’s home in Northern NSW.