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Finding the best CBD topical for your needs

By Ryan Goo | Apr 18, 2019 in CBD Blog | 9 min read

CBD topical cream sitting by the sink

When it comes to shopping for cannabis topicals, there are a lot of options. It seems like every company in the cannabis industry is creating their own product, at one time or another.

The CBD industry lacks the transparency it deserves. There are alarming amounts of companies providing false claims and empty products containing misleading ingredients. In an industry driven on helping people, this is absolutely unethical.

Urbul is not just another CBD company. Our main goal is to educate and foster a growing community. We provide dosage calculatorsinteractive mapsinfographics, and compiled research charts to help inform above all else.

Choosing the best topical CBD products depends on your specific needs and ailments. It can get confusing, we don't blame you. This article dives into what makes a good topical cbd product. We dive into important differences between different brands. Most importantly we highlight what's important when choosing your next cbd topical cream.

In this article we are going to highlight

  1. Top 3 CBD topicals for pain
  2. Best topical CBD oil for women vs men
  3. Tips on choosing the best CBD topical
  4. Ingredients that the best CBD topicals contain

Best CBD topical product for pain relief

Being a CBD brand ourselves, we must address the obvious bias we have towards our own products. We honestly believe that we have the best cbd pain cream that you can buy. Our cream is has the highest CBD potency on the market. We take pride in over delivering and we know the ingredients speak for themselves. We formulate our products with ingredients that are proven effective in the skin and beauty space.

We have included products that are not our own because we respect their formulations as well.

Alternatively, you can make your own cannabis balm. Sourcing each ingredient separately will save you a few bucks but you may struggle to find the right consistency. If you do decide to make your own, make sure to choose a carrier oil that matches one of your existing ingredients.

#1 Urbul CBD cream

Urbul's topical cream is a high potency rich cbd salve, with each ingredient maxed to deliver consistent results. We use proven ingredients like Aloe vera, coconut oil, chamomile, CBD, and more that will provide the nourishment and hydration your skin deserves.

More importantly, we strip our essential oils of unnecessary additives. Our perfected CBD lotion recipe is non-greasy, anti-aging, and moisturizing. Urbul sources CBD from non-gmo industrial hemp grown across 900 acres of land in the US.

The purpose of our cream is to soothe sore muscles, relieve arthritis pain and joint pain, provide inflammatory relief, deeply moisturize skin, smoothe scars, relieves skin conditions, and to naturally tighten skin cells on the face.

What we like:

  • Highest potency of CBD on the market (500mg per 2oz)
  • Rich essential oils - coconut, olive, and orange essential oil
  • Chamomile - neutralizes free radicals to reduce skin irritants
  • Cinnamon - natural skin lightener and scar reducer
  • Best value - 9.1 mg of CBD per dollar (500mg, $55)
  • travel sized (2oz) - Yes, flying with CBD in 2019 is legal

What we don't like:

Nothing. We handpicked each ingredient for a unique purpose. We chose ingredients that work well together and all support a similar goal.

#2 Koi Lavender

We have nothing but respect for the guys at Koi CBD. They do things the right way and have a good reputation amongst the hemp community. Their product has organic coconut extract which helps reduce scars and soften skin and aloe vera as their moisturizing base.

What we like:

  • Aloe vera
  • Vitamin E
  • Organic coconut extract
  • Lavender essential oil

What we don't like:

  • Decent value - 4.4 mg of cbd per dollar (200mg, $45).
  • Not travel friendly - 4.25 oz which exceeds the 3oz travel size

#3 Lifted by Embody

We love the packaging and appeal of Lifted by Embody (Imbue botanicals). They have some awesome packaging design and the cream comes in a aesthetically pleasing glass jar. We also like the essential oils they chose to use. The downside here is that they charge $90 for 100mg of CBD. This is like paying $10 for a can of soda.

What we like:

  • Rosemary essential oil
  • mint essential oil
  • Vitamin E

What we don't like:

  • Extremely expensive -  1.1 mg CBD per dollar (100mg, $90)
  • infused fragrances - can irritate skin and don't add much benefit topically

Best topical CBD oil for women vs men

We get a lot of gender related questions from our customers. People want to know if certain products are meant for certain genders.

People get confused because companies often market to certain genders with certain packaging themes. This is more of a marketing effort than anything as companies want their products to seem more 'tailored'.

For skin creams at least, both men and women will benefit equally. We have the same skin and our bodies work in the same ways. This relates to everything including skin care, vitamin supplementation, moisturizing, etc. For creams, simply rub topicals into targeted specific areas regardless of what gender you are. 

In regards to CBD, both men and women absorb the CBD the same way, don't let anyone tell you otherwise.

More important factors to consider is the weight of an individual and CBD sensitivity. Heavier people will need a higher dosage to feel inflammatory and pain relief. The same applies to someone with a higher sensitivity to CBD.

Quick tips on finding the best topical CBD product

Finding the right product can be daunting. There are so many variations by so many different companies. 

Don't make the process more confusing than it needs to be. Focus on what's important and the process becomes so much easier. 

Here are two tips you should follow when finding the perfect CBD topical oil or cream for your needs.

  1. The most expensive product inside CBD cream is CBD. This amount should be the number one thing you look at first. The price of the product should scale with how much CBD is included. 
  2. Make sure lab reports are included. There are too many companies selling misleading CBD products. If there are no lab reports showing CBD potency, save yourself the trouble and walk away.
  3. Avoid proprietary blends. If a company won't tell you how much CBD is in their topical then they do not deserve your time of day.

Important tip: CBD extract vs. Hemp seed extract

Look for a product with actual CBD extract or CBD oil. These extracts contain CBD and other beneficial cannabinoids. This is different from hemp seed oil or hemp oil which is a totally different compound from different parts of the hemp plant. Each has different benefits and different makeups.

There are a handful of companies advertising CBD in their hemp seed oil products which is extremely misleading. Make sure your product comes with lab reports showing CBD potency and be sure to read the ingredients!

CBD oil is completely different from hemp oil and has different benefits. Do your due diligence when shopping and make sure your product actually contains CBD!

Ingredients that the best cannabis topicals contain

We are often asked "How effective are CBD topicals?". The answer comes down to the amount of quality ingredients.

Here are some key ingredients to look for when choosing a topical cream. Most companies have a combination of multiple ingredients listed below. This database of ingredients is meant to be unbiased. Most of these ingredients can be found in our cream, but not all. 

Cannabidiol (CBD)

The hemp plant contains over a hundred naturally occuring substances called cannabinoids. These cannabinoids are absorbed into your body's endocannabinoid system and help regulate many body functions. Benefits of CBD include stress relief, muscle pain relief, chronic pain management, anxiety relief, back pain relief, and improved quality of sleep.

CBD, or cannabidiol, is one of the many cannabinoids found in the hemp plant. Cannabinoid supplementation in the form of marijuana has been used by many for hundreds of years for its medicinal effects.

In recent years, topical CBD oil for pain is becoming popular as a non psychoactive supplement that is free from THC. THC is the cannabinoid found in marijuana that gets you high.

Moisturizing agents

  1. Aloe Vera - rich in vitamin C, E, and other moisturizing antioxidants
  2. Olive Oil - rich in vitamin A and E, olive oil is an amazing natural moisturizer
  3. mint essential oil - reduces itchiness and can help hydrate dried skin from sunburn

Skin protection

  1. Vitamin E - reduces UV damage in skin
  2. Rosemary essential oil - superior antiseptic properties for your skin
  3. Orange essential oil - natural and effective anti inflammatory agent that helps detox skin [1]

Skin tightener / enhancer

  1. chamomile - tightens the pores and mollifies the skin, which helps to blur the spots and inflammation scars
  2. cinnamon - removes bacteria that causes acne, also reduces acne scars
  3. coconut essential oil - stimulates production of collagen. Improved collagen leads to less wrinkles and tighter skin
  4. lavender essential oil - when applied topically, helps reduce redness, blotchy patches, and acne scarring

Disclaimer: essential oils are only beneficial when diluted into full products. If you plan on buying these oils individually for personal use, do not directly apply them to your skin by itself. They are very concentrated and work better when diluted down into creams or bars. If you wish to take them by itself, consider using an oil diffuser.

Frequently Asked Questions

what are cbd topicals?

CBD topical products come in the form of creams, rubs, lotions, salves, and balms. They are infused with cannabidiol (CBD) and are applied to your skin topically.

what cbd topicals can do?

Cannabidiol is a natural compound that helps relieve pain and inflammation. Topical CBD products help target specific areas in need of relief. Most topical products also contain healthy ingredients for your skin. These help moisturize your skin, reduce scars and wrinkles, and protects your skin from harmful UVB rays.

how much cbd in topicals dosage?

When searching the internet for CBD topical creams, you will find that most products range from 100 - 500mg CBD. We recommend finding a product rich in cannabidiol.

how long does topical cbd oil take to work?

If you are dealing with inflammation or muscle pain, you should feel some relief in a matter of minutes. Please have realistic expectations. Your arthritis didn't develop overnight and no magical product is going to magically make the pain instantly disappear. What you can expect is a natural form of relief that will help make your daily life easier.

how does cbd topical work?

Cannabidiol works by binding to receptors in the endocannabinoid system. While CBD doesn't directly bind to the body's CB1 and CB2 receptors, it does create indirect actions that help the body. These include stimulating the TRPV1 receptors which help with pain and inflammation. CBD supplementation indirectly increases anandamide which leads to increased pleasure and motivation.


CBD Oil and CBD Topical salves are the next big thing in skin care. The reason is because CBD is a naturally occuring substance that does not come with side effects as opposed to chemical based products that are still way too common in current markets. We foresee the industry taking a step forward in 2019 led by a variety of cannabis rub and cannabis salve type products.

We encourage everyone to consider trying CBD for the first time if you haven't already. If you have a serious medical condition or are taking pain medications, please consult with a doctor before trying cannabidiol based products.

Consult with a physician before use if you have a serious medical condition or use prescription medications. A Doctor’s advice should be sought before using this and any supplemental dietary product. Representations regarding the efficacy and safety of Urbul have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).


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