You inhale cannabis. You also eat cannabis. But did you know that you can also rub cannabis onto your skin for health benefits? Before you run to the pharmacy and buy the first bottle labelled “CBD lotion” that you see on the shelf, know the 7 effective types of cannabis topicals to know which one’s the best one for you.

But first, how do cannabis topicals work?

When cannabis topicals are rubbed onto your skin, they penetrate the skin and bind to the CB1 and CB2 receptors found in your endocannabinoid system. The interaction between cannabis and your endocannabinoid system triggers localized effects in your skin, like pain relief and reduced inflammation and redness. 


Cannabis topicals can be full-spectrum or isolates. Full-spectrum topicals contain various cannabis compounds like cannabidiol (CBD), tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), terpenes, and flavonoids. With full-spectrum topicals, you get the benefit of the entourage effect


On the other hand, you may only want a topical isolate. For example, with a CBD isolate, the cannabinoid has been extracted from the plant. Therefore, it’s the only cannabis compound in your topical product. However, this process may remove some of the plant’s therapeutic powers.

Hands putting on CBD lotion

The 7 Types Kinds of Topical Cannabis

1. Lotions and Creams

Lotions and creams are easy to put anywhere on your body. Usually, people use this form of cannabis topicals to relieve itchy and dry skin.

2. Salves

Salves are similar to lotions and creams, usually thicker because they have an oil or wax base. People typically use salves to heal particular skin conditions like eczema, rosacea, and even acne. 

3. Balm Stick

Sometimes salves are too sticky and messy. But you still need that protecting ointment. Cannabis balm sticks solve that problem. They’re compact, so they’re easy to take with you. 

4. Soap

CBD soaps are a great option if you have inflamed skin caused by certain skin conditions like acne or rosacea. 

5. Oil

CBD oil is versatile because you can rub it on your skin or ingest it by putting it under your tongue or on your gums. 

6. Gel

Gels give you a cooling effect, making them an excellent option for treating headaches and migraines. To relieve the pain, you can rub the gel on your temples, sinuses, and forehead.

7. Transdermal Patch 

Transdermal patches are the most potent form of cannabis topicals. That’s because they can be placed on your skin for up to 3 days. As a result, cannabis compounds are absorbed into your skin constantly. That said, you can get high from a transdermal patch if it contains THC. However, if you use a patch with only CBD, you won’t get high but will still experience therapeutic benefits.

The Bottom Line

There are at least 7 effective types of cannabis topicals you can choose from. At Comfort Tree, we sell different kinds of topicals to meet your needs, like the Giid Healing Salve, which is an effective treatment for arthritis, fibrosis, cramps, sore muscles, nerve, and joint pain. If you’re unsure which project to buy, call or email us anytime: +1.226.568.2711, comforttreehealing@gmail.com. Or come by our store to talk to one of our weed experts.

Comfort Tree sells Giid Healing Salve, a CBD topical