A lot of people who have never tried a CBD topical underestimate what it can do. More and more people have found that incorporating a topical into their daily wellness routine has helped them out tremendously. Obviously, most of this is because of the CBD itself, which sends cannabinoids to cannabinoid receptors in the skin as well as the muscles beneath, allowing these receptors to do their jobs, regulating functions of the body including inflammation. But CBD topicals contain more than just CBD, and sometimes, it’s those other ingredients that take the potential effects to a whole new level.
Both warming and cooling topicals have become extremely popular, which isn’t surprising as we know that both heat and ice can help the skin and muscles recover from pain more quickly. But which is better – one that cools you down, or one that warms you up?
What’s in a CBD Topical Besides, Well, CBD?
To appreciate CBD topicals, we need to look beyond the CBD. We know this sounds blasphemous – after all, CBD is the star ingredient, and it’s something that we’ve dedicated our livelihoods to. However, it isn’t all that you’ll find in any given topical, and a lot of times, the other ingredients are supporting the CBD’s ability to do its job, so let’s give them some of their due appreciation.
The average CBD topical consists of a variety of plant-based ingredients, including natural oils that moisturize and aid in the absorption of the compounds, as well as essential oils and botanical extracts. It’s these essential oils and botanical extracts that possess unique properties, which primarily come from their terpenes – yes, the same terpenes found in the hemp plant. Each plant also has its own array of terpenes, and each one offers something unique.
Warm vs Cool CBD Topicals
Many plants naturally offer cooling or warming effects on contact, which go deep into the muscles that are causing you aches and pains. Let’s now look at both warming and cooling topicals, what they do and where these effects come from.
Warming topicals are quite therapeutic, because that warming sensation can feel luxurious, especially when we are in pain. After all, there’s nothing like a hot bath to soothe aching muscles, right? Warming topicals work under the same principle, supplying warmth where it’s needed.
Warming sensations are good for aches and pain, because warmth increases blood flow to the affected tissue. More blood flow means more relief, as this opens up the blood vessels to provide a calming effect on tense muscles.
These products often get their warming properties from warming herbs and botanicals like ginger, pepper, and cinnamon.
Cooling topicals are equally enjoyable, and equally beneficial to those dealing with pain. The cooling sensation almost always comes from menthol, which is the dominant compound in the mint plant. It provides a cooling feeling on contact, which also helps numb pain. We know the benefits of ice application after injury, as it helps lower inflammation which is responsible for the swelling and pain that one feels after hurting themselves. Menthol works in a similar manner, and its fast-numbing properties are always welcome.
Which One is Better?
Truth is that it’s up to you – neither is objectively better for pain than the other. Or you may decide to give both a try, as you’re in the mood for different sensations at different times during the day. Ultimately, the choice is yours.