Topical cannabis, or topicals, are simply cannabis-infused products for use on the surface of the skin. They can come in the form of balms, lotions, oils, tinctures or personal lubricants and can be applied directly to an affected area for fast-acting relief.
Skin, the largest organ in the body, contains a large amount of cannabinoid receptors. When cannabis is applied directly to the skin, cannabinoids are absorbed quickly into the affected area without wasting time metabolizing or breaking through the blood/brain barrier. This means that more cannabinoids can be utilized by the body without the risk of overconsumption.
Cannabis-infused lotions are great for everyday pains associated with arthritis or muscle fatigue. They are often integrated with other herbs and essential oils and are therefore not recommended for open wounds or use around the eyes. Many lotions are also strain-specific which can be either invigorating or relaxing depending on your choice of strain.
Though there are a number of products you can use to extract cannabinoids from marijuana (specifically, fat alcohol), perhaps the best option for creating soothing topical creams is coconut oil. Not only can coconut oil retain more cannabinoids than many other lipids (thanks to an almost 90 percent fat content), it works wonders on the skin, too!
- 2 cups of marijuana
- 2 cups of coconut oil
- 2 ounces of beeswax
- Fragrant oil of your choice (Feel free to add additional ingredients like Vitamin E and essential oils)
- We will start by decarboxylating the marijuana. Put the marijuana into the oven dish and put it in the oven that has been preheated to 250 degrees Fahrenheit for 15 minutes.
- While the marijuana is in the oven, pour the 2 cups of coconut oil into the saucepan and keep it ready.
- After 15 minutes, remove the decarboxylated marijuana matter from the oven and add it to the coconut oil in the sauce pan. Mix the marijuana and coconut oil together well using a spatula and put it on the stove on low flame to cook for 20 minutes. This will allow the marijuana to get infused with the coconut oil.
- After 20 minutes remove the mixture from the stove top and pour it into the jar using a cheese cloth to drain out the solid marijuana plant matter. Squeeze the cheese cloth thoroughly into the jar so that all the excess oil with the marijuana in the cheese cloth gets collected in the jar. You will end up with nicegreen cannabis infused coconut oil.
- Now add 5 parts of the cannabis infused coconut oil to 1 part of beeswax, that is, 10 ounces of the oil with 2 ounces of the beeswax. Melt the beeswax in a pan and once it has fully melted add the cannabis infused coconut oil to it and mix well with a spatula. Take the pan off the stove and add the fragrant oil of your choice to the mixture. Stir it in and let the oil set and you will have your own home made cannabis infused salve.