The 5 Best CBD Topicals For Pain Relief (Plus 2 Highly-Effective THC Balms)
From left: Populum, Onyx + Rose, Lord Jones, Baskin Glow, Dixie Synergy, Wildflower Cool Stick
I am, by no means, “athletic.” But like most New Yorkers, I try. (After all, this is a city of strivers and fitness-obsessed type-A individuals who like to rock Alo Yoga and Outdoor Voices gear.)
But I don’t engage in physical activity solely because of my woefully wobbly midsection. My sanity depends on it. Truly. In the immortal words of Elle Woods: Endorphins make you happy!
In my early thirties I dabbled in SoulCycle, swimming at the 14th Street Y, and three disastrous attempts at SLT. These days it’s running loops in Central Park, Y7 yoga, and contact combat. And let me tell you, hitting a weekly fitness goal isn’t always easy—especially when you’re rapidly approaching your 40s with a few minor injuries under your belt.
I’m no spring chicken and the occasional bout of soreness is now a fact of life.
So recovery is a big deal. And personally, I’m all about CBD (a.k.a cannabidiol)—the non-psychoactive compound in cannabis. It’s been having a moment these past few years, making appearances in all sorts of wellness and beauty products—from CBD edibles, to capsules, to transdermal patches, and beyond. But make no mistake. It’s not the passing health trend that activated charcoal and golden milk used to be.
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“CBD is extremely anti-inflammatory and neuroprotective. A normal person may use it to prevent conditions such as arthritis or even topically to prevent acne breakouts,” Dr. Shivani Amin, a physician and cannabis expert who is a member of the AMMPA (American Medical Marijuana Physicians Association), says. “I think CBD shows great promise for the future. It all boils down to educating the public about the correct usage and understanding the plant better.”
I’ve long been a fan of edibles and tinctures, but for those who are skeptical of ingesting it, I’m also a big believer in topicals. From lotions and creams to balms and bath bombs, I have experimented with many different kinds—and I’ve come to rely on them for localized pain and reducing inflammation.
But as with any CBD product, there’s no skeleton key that unlocks relief for everyone—you have to find what works for your body. And you certainly have to experiment with different products, brands, and dosages—it’s the only way for you to see which ones really work.
Just know that topicals, unlike edibles, serve a different purpose: They’re primarily for targeted surface areas to address tension, spasms, and muscle pain because CBD applied to the skin doesn’t reach your bloodstream. Think of it as spot treating problematic areas. For instance, if your lower back is shot, apply your preferred product to that area only.
One thing to note, though: Only buy from established brands from licensed dispensaries—not random bodegas, sketchy websites, so-called health food stores, or even Amazon. Always ask for COAs (Certificates of Analysis) to ensure that the topical actually contains the cannabinoids it claims to have. And have an open mind about using CBD topicals incorporated with THC—because those two cannabinoids combined are more effective when addressing inflammation, which is the primary cause of soreness and pain.
“I have treated many patients with chronic conditions with full spectrum CBD and attained great results,” Dr. Amin says. “I also believe the public needs to understand that CBD works in conjunction with THC. Usually this requires at least 3–5% THC to work for serious forms of pain and more chronic medical conditions. I have patients come in with chronic and severe pain expecting to have their pain alleviated with just CBD. Although CBD works well for pain, in many situations patients with severe pain need to have some THC. [The cannabinoids] work synergistically to help ease severe pain.”
Here’s what I have found most effective over the years.
WILDFLOWER CBD COOL STICK (300MG; $60)
Wildflower was my inaugural topical. At the time, I had just started learning Krav Maga—a rather intense Israeli contact combat sport where there are no real rules. (Except to survive.) And my body was sore all the time those first few months. It didn’t help that I’ve got this existing and highly-bothersome back condition. I was also running a few times a week. But Wildflower’s CBD Cool Stick, which conveniently comes packaged as a roll-on, helped me tremendously. The trick is to apply the cooling stick before your workout or any other physically strenuous activity—not after. Why? Because in my experience, sweat reactivates the cooling components of the Wildflower’s formula. A six–mile run is infinitely more pleasant when you feel the the cream working even when you’ve got a ways to go. Also note that the brand also carries a Healing Stick (500mg) for $75. But it’s got arnica and I’m not exactly fond of the odor it emits through my clothes. However, if you do like arnica-scented everything, go for it.
POPULUM COLD THERAPY HEMP RUB (100MG; $45)
Unlike Wildflower, Populum comes in gel form. Also: It’s artic. Kind of like a more aggressive Vick’s Vaporub—so much so that you will definitely need to wash your hands after application. (The last thing you need is to accidentally rub your eyes with that stuff still on your digits.) But it’s effective—despite its relatively low dose of CBD. And a little goes a long way. Use it for minor aches and inconveniences—like when you find yourself stiff because you’ve been sitting on your far-from-ergonomic work chair most of the day. And if you find yourself really hurting, I recommend using a topical that contains both THC and CBD. (More on that below.)
LORD JONES + TAMARA MELLON HIGH-CBD FORMULA STILETTO CREAM (200MG; $70)
This is every woman’s dream come true. High heels are just not made the way they used to be—stilettos these days are narrower, higher, and pointier. Remember: Louboutin does not concern himself with the comfort of his designs. (He said so himself in the documentary and several other news outlets.) Gone are the days of the sensible heels our grandmothers wore. But alas, sky–high footwear is a necessary evil. So Lord Jones, the wildly–popular CBD company, collaborated with Tamara Mellon to help ease that discomfort. Just dab a little solution onto your feet and wait for your skin to absorb the formula before putting on your four–inch torture device.
BASKIN BODY WELLNESS CBD CREAM (400MG; $60)
Baskin has a lower–dose formula that clocks in at 150mg CBD that costs $20 less. But I say, Go big or go home. Invest in the higher dose if you want real relief all over: It’s meant to be used all over the body versus its cousin, which was specifically created for smaller targeted areas. Beyond that, you can always use the 400mg cream the way you see fit: Nobody is going to stop you if you want to use it only in specific pain points.
ONYX + ROSE BROAD SPECTRUM CBD BLISS BALM (500MG; $54)
This high–dose balm seems to be a crowd favorite, certainly in my household. The jar itself contains two ounces of product. It doesn’t seem like much—But because the consistency of the cream is particularly smooth and spreadable, it glides easily onto the skin and covers more real estate. In terms of relief, you can expect gradual relaxation of the muscles—especially if you’re prone to spasms or simply incredibly tight.
BASKIN GLOW (50MG THC + 500MG CBD; $80)
Now this is where we change course. Serious athletes and people suffering from chronic pain will benefit from this lotion. And yes, it’s in a jar but it rubs on like an incredibly light lotion—not at all like a heavy body butter. The main difference is that it contains both THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) in addition to CBD. And that’s a good thing. Both cannabinoids work synergistically together: THC will open up your receptors, enabling your body to absorb and metabolize more CBD. Beyond that, Glow is applied somewhat differently than the rest of the products on this list. Apply a minuscule amount to your pulse points, the insides of your elbows, and the backs of your knees—areas where the skin is at its thinnest. The reasoning: Because of its formula and consistency, your body will absorb the product so that it reaches your bloodstream—unlike many other topicals.
DIXIE SYNERGY RELIEF CBD AND THC BALM (50MG CBD + 50MG THC; $45)
I’m a huge fan of Dixie’s edibles, particularly its Birthday Cake White Chocolate and root beer elixir. But the cannabis company also does a damn fine job with its Synergy CBD and THC combo balm. It’s what I reach for whenever I’m too achy and cannabidiol alone just won’t cut it. It all boils down to the fact that the presence of THC opens up receptors in our bodies to allow for greater CBD absorption.
CBD (a.k.a cannabidiol) is the non-psychoactive compound in cannabis. And it’s been having a moment these past few years, making appearances in all sorts of wellness products. But make no mistake. It’s not the passing health trend that activated charcoal and golden milk used to be. This is legit.
5 Best CBD Cream For Pain in 2020 – Topicals for Natural Pain Relief
Pain is a thing we deal with on a daily basis but that doesn’t mean that we have to grit our teeth and simply accept it. A good solution for this is to take a CBD topical and apply it to the skin.
CBD cream has anti-inflammatory properties. The best CBD cream for pain offers a lot more than relieving pain and this article provides an in-depth review of each and every one of them.
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Why is it better?
- Ships to all 50 States
- Only contains 0.3% THC
- Ships to all 50 States
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The Lineup At A Glance
Best for Muscle & Joint Formula
- Soothes Aches and Pains
- Attacks Pain at the Source
- Supports Healthy Range of Motion
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- 3rd Party Lab Tested
- Verified CBD Potency
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- Acts quickly
- High-quality ingredient
- Free Shipping
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Best Organic Choice
- Comes at an affordable price
- Carefully tested by a third-party
- Organically Grown
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- Trusted Brand
- Lab Results on the website
- Contains additional ingredients that is good for the skin
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- High Bang for your Buck appear
- Free Shipping
- Loyalty Rewards
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Best Moisturizing Cream
- Extremely effective
- Works fast
- Moisturizes skin
what is the best CBD cream for pain
If you have chronic pain and would like a very potent CBD cream to help you cope with it, then we highly recommend the 1937 Wellness CBD comfort cream. It’s one of the most potent CBD creams on the market and it acts quickly as well which is really convenient.
However it’s very potent and people with sensitive skin might have problems with it. If you have sensitive skin or simply can’t handle 1000 mg of CBD concentration we recommend the Joy Organics CBD cream.
It’s not as strong as the 1937 Wellness CBD comfort cream but it’s strong enough to handle chronic pain and it isn’t as hard on people who have sensitive skin.
How does CBD Cream work For Pain?
CBD products are known to be effective for pain and they’ve been hyped up a lot but how do they do it? And does it actually work?
The answer to that is, yes. CBD creams do work and they work just as well as most pain relief medication out there.
This is because CBD has natural anti-inflammatory properties which makes it effective as a pain relief cream. Applying the cream on the skin can and letting it soak in for some time will help reduce swelling and inflammation preventing the buildup of further pain.
Aside from its natural anti-inflammatory properties, CBD is known to greatly affect the Endocannabinoid system which is known for handling the body’s processes. One of the most noteworthy roles of the Endocannabinoid system is that it helps regulate pain and that’s where CBD comes in.
CBD is known to naturally increase the number of endocannabinoids in our bodies allowing our pain receptors to deal with chronic pain much easily. To be more precise the cannabinoids within CBD bind to endocannabinoid receptors (CB1 and CB2) in the body.
The CB1 and CB2 receptors are responsible for managing various functions like regulating appetite, maintaining homeostasis, and managing the body’s pain. By having CBD bind to these receptors, they send out signals to the body to help fight off pain and balance out the body a lot faster than it normally could.
This results in less pain for the body and prevents further pain from building up as well. Essentially CBD is a natural pain reliever which is one of its strong suits especially in this day and age where we rely on artificial drugs to control our body’s processes.
Do CBD topicals have side effects?
If you search online , you’ll find out that CBD isn’t a perfect drug and it does have some side-effects. SIde-effects like dryness in the mouth, drowsiness, and irregular liver activity are just some of these effects.
However these are for CBD products that are ingested. CBD topicals are different and they don’t have any side effects so far. They also don’t interfere with medication since they aren’t ingested in the body.
Despite all this, we still recommend that you ask your doctor for advice. People with skin conditions or sensitive skin might find using CBD creams uncomfortable and it might damage their already frail skin.
How To Use CBD Topicals Cream, Salve & Lotion
CBD salves, creams, and lotions are applied the same way as other topical. You apply them to your skin and massage the skin with it.
You use it mainly to help relieve pain and to make your skin feel better. It can also be used as a general health product because some CBD topicals contain natural ingredients that are healthy for your skin like coconut oil, sesame seed oil, and other healthy ingredients.
5 Best CBD Cream For Pain In 2020
Medterra – Topical CBD Cooling Cream
Medterra is known for its quality health products and supplements and although they’ve fairly new to the market, they have garnered the trust of their customers.
- Grown 100% organically
- Comes at an affordable price
- Carefully tested by a third-party lab
- Fairly new to the market
- Does not ship to all states
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CBD oil isn’t necessarily cheap and it’s very understandable after all the great lengths and efforts made to put cbd into different products like CBD creams, a CBD salve, CBD oil, and CBD topicals.
With that being said, it’s wonderful if a CBD enthusiast is able to procure cbd products without spending a lot of money. Thankfully some brands out there offer affordable prices and Medterra is one of them.
Medterra products come at an affordable price and you can purchase it without drilling a hole into your wallet. With this being said, Medterra CBD creams are sold at an affordable price of less than $50.
The Medterra topical CBD cooling cream specifically has a good overall potency of 500 mg of CBD. The cream also comes with arnica and menthol which helps give the product a cooling feeling and even a small amount of it greatly helps in relieving pain.
Their topical CBD cooling cream specifically does more than pain relief as the cream is made from high quality ingredients and it’s also a full spectrum CBD product which means that it contains vitamins, minerals, and other beneficial chemicals that are good for your skin.
Still, Medterra is a fairly new company and they haven’t figured everything out yet. They can’t ship to all states as of now which severely limits their selling potential.
But aside from that Medterra is a promising upstart in the CBD industry and their CBD cooling cream is a good proof of it.
CBD Living Salve
CBD Living Salve is one of the most effective CBD creams out there in the market. It comes in two variants with varying concentrations.
- Very Potent
- Works fast as a CBD topical
- Moisturizes skin effectively
- May contain allergens
CBD Living Salve also has other features asides from its potent 600 mg CBD concentration. It also comes at an affordable price which makes it appealing to potential buyers who are on a budget.
Additionally, the CBD cream doesn’t contain any THC and it is soy free and
GMO Free as well. One of its biggest and most noteworthy features though is ist moisturizing capabilities.
Creams are made to moisturize the skin and CBD Living Salve does this well. Its success in moisturizing the skin can be attributed to its patented skin delivery system which increases the bioavailability of the skin allowing it to absorb moisture much quickly.
The only negative you have to look out for is that some of the ingredients mixed in the cream might cause people allergies. CBD Living Salve contains natural ingredients like chamomile that help in taking care of the skin, sadly some people are allergic to chamomile and it might cause complications.
We advise checking the ingredients list before purchasing the product because you might suffer from minor allergies if you aren’t careful.
Overall, CBD Living Salve is a wonderful CBD cream for pain. CBD Living being a top seller in the CBD industry lives up to its name and it provides one of the most potent and most affordable CBD creams the market has to offer.
Aspen Green – Pain Relief Body Balm
Aspen Green is one of the most trusted brands in the CBD industry. They are awarded a safety verified badge by multiple reputable third party labs.
- Trusted Brand
- Very transparent to its customers
- Good for the skin
- Hempy flavor from their hemp extract
- Can cause allergic reactions thanks to the added ingredients it has
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Being a trusted brand Aspen Green offers the best full spectrum CBD oil in the markets as well as their other products like CBD creams and CBD topicals. They also have broad spectrum CBD oils as well which is useful for people who don’t like taking THC with their CBD.
Their full spectrum CBD cream is also good for the skin as well since it also contains other natural healthy ingredients that moisturize and enriches the skin.
What’s nice about their CBD topical is that it also comes at a reasonable price of $90 which is a little bit on the higher end of the price list when it comes to CBD products. However this is still a good deal because their CBD cream does more than just treat pain.
Their CBD cream contains multiple terpenes like Pinene,Limonene,, Myrcene, Linalool, Terpinolene, and other powerful and potent terpenes. They’ll help alleviate pain quickly and they are also known to give off this soothing and relaxing smell.
Asides from soothing pain, these ingredients can be used as a topical to keep the skin healthy and full of life. This does come with a downside though where the additional ingredients can cause allergies or side effects to people with certain conditions.
We recommend checking the ingredients list for things that you are allergic to just to be on the safe .We also advise asking your doctor for advice especially if you’re taking some sort of medication since the added ingredients might interfere with it.
Overall, Aspen Green is one of the most transparent and reliable CBD brands out there that sell quality CBD creams and CBD salve. All of their lab results can be seen online which gives potential buyers the push they need to buy and try out that wonderful full-spectrum CBD cream for pain.
Joy Organics Salve
Joy Organics is a brand known for its potent and effective CBD products. It definitely is one of the top CBD brands in the market and is known for its quick-acting products that help deal with pain without damaging the skin.
- High-quality ingredients
- Extremely Potent
- Free Shipping
- Lacks transparency
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The brand has a large variety of products to choose from from full spectrum CBD, CBD isolates, and broad spectrum CBD.
With this being said, their CBD topicals and creams are also on the best CBD products on the market as well.
Joy Organics CBD Cream works fast on the skin and quickly gives relief to the body as well. Theur CBD cream comes in two concentrations, 500 mg and 1000 mg.
Their 1000 mg CBD cream in particular is rather potent and its one of the strongest in CBD creams in the market. It’s ideal to be applied on the skin for treating chronic pain, joint pain, and other ailments.
Lastly, Joy Organics CBD Cream isn’t full-spectrum and the topical cream is primarily focused on relieving joint pain, inflammations, and muscle pains. This also means that it’s not full spectrum in nature so we advise that you use this mostly for treating external pain.
Out of all the CBD topical creams out there. Joy Organics CBD topical cream one of the most reliable ones in the market. It’s one of the best CBD creams out there because it gives reliable results and it works fast in treating pain and other ailments.
Additionally, its 500 mg of CBD is just the right amount to make it potent as a topical CBD but without having severe side-effects or irritating highly sensitive skin. You can still opt for the 1000 mg concentrate if you really want to max out its potency.
Thanks to the careful formulation of the manufacturers and handling of the growers, this cbd cream is less likely to be painful on the skin as well and it’s actually quite soothing even when you over apply.
Their success can also be attributed because their CBB products have been meticulously tested by third party labs worldwide. This ensures that they give out only the highest quality products to their customers.
And speaking of customers, Joy Organics CBD product and CBD salve are well known by its staff.
That’s quality customer service since some brands’ customer service are ignorant of their products which does make them lose face in the eyes of their customers. Joy Organics understand that making things easy for your customers helps their already good brand.
Speaking of Brand. One of the few problems with Joy Organics is their lack of transparency about their methods and system of the company.
There have been controversies in the past regarding the sourcing of Joy Organics. And although they still offer quality service and wonderful products, it still leaves a sour taste in their customers’ mouths.
A little bit of transparency can go a long way and help Joy Organics gain more customers. Despite this setback, they are still a reliable CBD brand and their CBD cream is the “cream” of the crop.
The combination of an amazing product with quality customer service gives a premium feeling to their service. Sadly their prices come at a premium as well and buying their really large products can be costly.
You’ll be spending a lot of money if you plan to buy Joy Organics CBD products. Thankfully they provide free shipping on all of their products and they ship to all 50 states.
This helps balance out the price difference making still a viable option for budget buyers.
Green Garden Gold – HumanoFlow CBD Salve
If you’re looking for the best CBD topicals that offer the best bang for your buck, then you’ll love Green Garden Gold HumanoFlow CBD Salve. Their full-spectrum CBD cream may not offer the best potency or as effective as the other full-spectrum CBD creams on this list but it sure is cheap.
- High Bang for your Buck appeal
- Free Shipping
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- Lacks transparency about their lab results
- Only accepts Visa credit cards
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It only costs around $29.99 and it offers decent potency with its 150 mg CBD potency. Being one of the best cbd creams on the market it’s also very appealing to the nose as well since it gives off this soothing smell.
This soothing feeling comes from the coconut oil and vanilla extract mixture that greatly helps relieve the body simply from its smell alone.
If cheap and effective is all you need in a CBD topical, then you’d love the Green Garden Gold HumanoFlow CBD Salve for its cheapness and its ability to relieve pain despite its low concentration of CBD.
Green Garden Gold HumanoFlow CBD Salve should be your go to choice if you want to buy cheap but reliable CBD topicals for your skin. It’s effective enough to treat mild pain and considering that it costs around $29.99, itt really gives the best value out of all the products on this list.
It’s not as effective as the other products in dealing with pain though, and if you are suffering from chronic pain, we do recommend you pick a CBD cream with high concentration like the Joy Organics Salve.
What we really love about the product and the brand in general though is that it really has your best interest when it comes to saving money. The Green Garden Gold brand offers loyalty reward points to customers who buy their product, rate their products, and participate in their activities.
These points can be used for discounts essentially making an already cheap product cheaper! You also have to keep in mind that the company offers free shipping as well on all 50 states, so you’ll definitely be saving a lot of money if you stick with this brand.
Pair this with a strong and reliable CBD cream, and you’ve got yourself one of the best cbd creams for dealing with pain.
Additionally, Green Garden Gold HumanoFlow CBD Salve is an ideal product choice for maintaining and taking care of the skin as well since it’s very cheap and you can buy it in bulk. It’s also a good choice for people who want to deal with minor pain relief who have sensitive skin as well since it has a fairly low concentration.
Overall, Green Garden Gold HumanoFlow CBD Salves are a good choice for people on a budget but still want to purchase and use CBD cream for its health benefits and anti-inflammatory properties.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes. CBD cream contains natural anti-inflammatory properties that help reduce pain.
Both CBD oil and cream are effective for dealing with pain. The answer to who’s better actually depends on the type of pain. CBD cream is more helpful for dealing with arthritis and muscle pains while CBD oil is ingested which makes it better for dealing with overall chronic pain that can’t be reached by applying on the skin.
Yes. CBD cream might be safe for the skin but that doesn’t mean you should put it on everywhere. The cream contains essential oils and it can be very overbearing to some parts of the skin.
We recommend you avoid putting CBD cream on your face, your privates, and other sensitive areas of your skin.
You should first look at the potency of the cream. A potent cream is more effective in reducing inflammation and it acts much faster than less potent creams as well.
No. CBD topicals do not induce any harmful side effects. However it might incur allergic reactions since some full spectrum CBD creams do contain other natural ingredients.
It depends on what you’ll be using them for. But a lot of professionals believe that full-spectrum CBD is more therapeutic since it takes advantage of the entourage effect.
The entourage effect being the phenomenon where the components found in the cannabis plant work more effectively if they are in the presence of other components. Full spectrum CBD products take advantage of this phenomenon and maximise its therapeutic benefits.
About Keith Myers
Keith J. Myers is Editor in Chief of the Health Canal. He has overseen and directed the editorial growth and skill of this website since 2012. Before joining Health Canal, Keith was a writer and editor who covered topics in CBD, health, science, and wellness.
If you’re suffering from body pains you’d want to find a potent CBD topical for your body. The best CBD cream for pain relief in 2020 is just a click away.