Over the last year, CBD has become one of the buzziest ingredients in skincare, but what does it actually do? Here’s what happened when our senior beauty writer Hanna Ibraheem tried it for an entire month…
I have a fairly good relationship with my skin.
I know my skin type (combination with dry cheeks and a very oily T-zone) and I know the skincare ingredients it likes and doesn’t like. But the beginning of lockdown threw everything out of whack.
Spending less time outdoors, poor sleep quality and the general anxiety of everything going on left my skin feeling dry, looking dull and breaking out. My skin was stressed out.
Yep, much like the rest of our bodies, stress and worry can have a huge impact on the condition of our skin. We produce more stress hormones, which can lead to breakouts. Additionally, stress can also contribute to a duller complexion. Check and check.
While I’m well-versed in the hydration heroes and complexion brighteners in the skincare world, I discovered there’s only a handful that are touted for their ability to calm and soothe your complexion. Enter: CBD.
I’ve been hearing about the endless supposed benefits of CBD for a few years but have never committed to a full CBD Skincare routine. Keen to see if it lived up to its hype, I decided to incorporate CBD into my skincare routine for an entire month. Here’s how I got on.
A thorough cleanse
I decided to start my first day with CBD in the evening, after a particularly long and stressful day.
I used a thick balm cleanser for my first cleanse to remove my make-up. Then for a deeper clean, I reached for The Body Shop’s CBD Soothing Oil-Balm Cleansing Mask. Formulated with Community Fair Trade olive oil and white clay, alongside a blend of CBD and hemp seed oil, the formula draws out dirt and aims to help skin feeling soothed from dryness discomfort.
Despite coming out of the tube in a balm-like consistency, the formula slightly transformed into more of an oil upon contact with the skin.
I applied a thick layer (you don’t actually need a lot because it’s so nice and rich) to dry skin and left it on for five minutes while I watched an IGTV.
When people think of CBD, the first thing that comes to mind is usually the smell. It has a reputation for smelling particularly earthy and, for some, a bit pungent. But not this.
If anything, it smelt quite refreshing and even though it has a thick texture, it felt so lightweight on my skin, I actually forgot I was wearing it.
I washed my face and the oil immediately turned into a milk. Once it was rinsed away, I wiped off any excess with a muslin cloth and patted my face dry.
The mask had left my face looking smooth, feeling soft and, most importantly, completely clean without feeling stripped or tight.
Over the month, taking five minutes to relax while the cleanser got to work became one of my favourite steps of my routine.
Time for self care
I’ve always been a great advocate for oils, particularly scalp and body oils. There’s something truly indulgent about the slippery consistency and the way it lets you give yourself a mini massage during application. I don’t know why, then, it took me so long to discover a love for face oils.
Over the last month, I started using facial oils as a moment in my skincare routine to really take time for myself and unwind.
I dispense a few drops of The Body Shop’s CBD Restoring Facial Oil into the palm of my hand - as well as CBD and hemp seed oil, the formula is infused with patchouli extract - then rub my hands together and take a few deep breaths.
Most days, I would let the oil sink into my skin on its own but if I wanted an extra touch of self-care in my routine, I incorporated my gua sha at this step.
When doing this, I added an extra drop or two of the oil to my face to make sure there’s enough slip and that the gua sha wouldn’t cause any friction against my skin and sweep the tool along my jawline, cheekbones, browbones and forehead.
Doing this helped to push the oil deeper into my skin, leaving my dry cheeks to feel soothed and moisturised. It’s a great way to start and end your day. Not only did my mind feel calmer, my skin did, too.
The power of moisturiser
Before my CBD experiment, I was in somewhat of a slump and often forgot to drink water. This really showed up in my skin, leaving it incredibly dehydrated. So, for the last few weeks, I’ve really enjoyed slapping on some moisturiser (and making a conscious effort to drink more water, of course).
Moisturiser is one of the first skincare product we’re ever introduced to and while we might add in acids and serums as we get older, maintaining a strict relationship with moisturiser is important.
To round-off my routine for the last month, I’ve enjoyed finishing my skincare with The Body Shop’s CBD Replenishing Moisture Cream (unless it’s the morning, then I followed up with SPF, of course).
This vegan face cream has a velvety texture that contains CBD and hemp seed oil, but it kicks its moisturising abilities up a notch with the addition of plant-derived squalane. My dehydrated skin is truly grateful.
The formula is white from the jar, so I would warm it up between my fingers for a few seconds first. Once it became translucent, I massaged the cream into my skin – again, taking it all over my face, down my neck and across my décolletage.
I was worried about how its moisturising benefits would fare for my oily T-zone – except, it doesn’t leave your skin feeling greasy. Even my T-zone felt hydrated, yet balanced.
Every time I applied it over the month, my skin practically drank it up. I should definitely take note and do the same with water…
I’m genuinely so impressed by the impact a CBD range has had on my skin.
Before this experiment, I didn’t feel great about my skin but one month later, my complexion looks brighter, plus, it feels a whole lot softer.
Since starting my new routine, my skin hasn’t felt dry, thanks to these formulas. So, looks like I have a new hero skincare ingredient.
The Body Shop seeks to make a positive difference in the world by offering high-quality, naturally inspired skincare, body care, hair care and make-up produced ethically and sustainably and their CBD range is no different, enriched with 100% Natural Origin CBD and vegan certified. Shop online and in store now.