Is the fear of acne preventing you from applying oil on your face? Hemp seed oil can actually be a useful addition to your skincare routine.
The nutty-flavored hemp oil can not only season your salads, but also be a great treat for both oily and dry skin. With phytonutrients that control acne and inflammation, hemp oil’s therapeutic properties give your skin a healthy, glowing look in a matter of weeks.
Read on to know the various benefits of hemp oil for your skin and how to best use it according to your skin type.
Our Ayurvedic Doctor Speaks
“Vijaya (Hemp) after shodhan (purification) is used in Ayurveda for revving up digestion and metabolism. Sluggish immunity also gets a push to function better. Massaging with hemp seed oil helps detoxify the skin, increases skin turnover, tones the skin and prevents skin aging.”
Dr. Zeel Gandhi (Bachelor of Ayurveda, Medicine & Surgery), Chief Ayurvedic Doctor, Vedix
What Is Hemp Seed Oil?
Commonly referred to as hemp oil, hemp seed oil is extracted from the seeds of the Cannabis sativa plant. Cold pressed hemp seed oil has a beautiful yellow-greenish color and is used to prepare medicines, cosmetics and body care products such as moisturizers, conditioners, soaps and shampoos.
- Hemp seed oil is well known for the following potential health benefits:
- Treats inflammatory conditions
- Lowers cholesterol levels in the body
- Balances hormonal fluctuations
- Improves digestion and promotes gut health
- Relieves stress
- Treats pain
- Boosts immunity
As per Dr. Zeel Gandhi, Chief Ayurvedic Doctor at Vedix, “Vijaya (Hemp) after shodhan (purification) is used in Ayurveda for revving up digestion and metabolism. Sluggish immunity also gets a push to function better.”
Is Hemp Oil Good For Skin Care?
Owing to the high content of omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids, hemp oil acts as a good moisturizer for all skin types. Its non-comedogenic, astringent nature regulates excess oil and prevents chances of acne.
As per the Ayurvedic view, hemp seed oil helps balance the Vata and Kapha doshas, an excess of which causes dry and oily skin respectively. Further, its anti-inflammatory properties come to great use in the treatment of psoriasis and atopic dermatitis.
Hemp seed oil also contains a few potent phytonutrients such as caryophyllene (sesquiterpene), myrcene (monoterpene)  and others that make the oil a good antioxidant and anti-aging agent.
“Massaging with hemp seed oil helps detoxify the skin, increases skin turnover, tones the skin and prevents skin aging,” adds Dr Zeel.
The medicinal properties of hemp (Cannabis sativa) are mentioned in the age-old books of Ayurveda. However, the manufacturing of hemp seed oil was prohibited during the 19th-20th century due to its connection with marijuana (Cannabis indica). It was only recently that hemp products that contain about 0.2% to 0.3% of THC  have been legalized.
Benefits Of Hemp Oil For Skin Care
Several components in hemp oil give it its potent anti-inflammatory properties. This makes the carrier oil a good remedy for inflammatory conditions of the skin such as psoriasis.
According to a research named Hemp Seed Oil Properties, hemp seed oil has a high concentration of GLA or ɣ-linolenic acid (an omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acid), which is known to exhibit significant anti-inflammatory properties, especially upon consumption.
2. Heals Acne
According to reports, acne is supposedly the 8th most prevalent disease in the world affecting about 9.4%  of the total population.
Hemp oil controls three of the main causes that lead to the pathogenesis of acne. These are excess sebum, bacterial infection and inflammation. It helps regulate oil secretion on your face, thus preventing chances of pore-clogging that lead to comedone (blackheads and whiteheads) formations.
Its antimicrobial activity against Propionibacterium acnes bacteria  (acne-causing bacteria) treats the infection in your skin pores. Also, its anti-inflammatory nature reduces inflammation and accelerates the healing process.
3. Treats Eczema
Eczema or atopic dermatitis is a chronic inflammatory skin condition. While eczema cannot be permanently treated, its flare-ups can be managed with anti-inflammatory medication.
According to anecdotal evidence, the balanced content of omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids in hemp seed oil can help improve symptoms of atopic dermatitis when included in one’s diet .
4. Good For Oily Skin
Hemp seed oil can provide some added benefits when included in an oily skincare routine. Its non-comedogenic nature provides optimum moisturization without clogging your skin pores.
Further, it controls excess oil secretions and prevents your oily skin from becoming greasy during the day. This also helps to keep acne problems at bay.
5. Prevents Dry Skin
Loaded with the goodness of essential fatty acids, hemp oil can nourish and rejuvenate your dry skin. It prevents common dry skin symptoms like flaking and itchiness.
Upon topical application, hemp seed oil acts as a humectant that attracts and traps moisture into your dry skin. It also has the ability to repair the skin barrier and reduce transepidermal water loss and susceptibility of your skin to pathogen attacks.
6. Delays Skin Aging
Skin aging is natural but certain detrimental factors such as oxidative stress from excess sun exposure, dehydration and pollution can cause your skin to age prematurely. Hemp seed oil is known to delay skin aging by promoting collagen synthesis and reducing free radical damage to your skin cells.
A research named Myrcene- What Are the Potential Health Benefits of This Flavouring and Aroma Agent? reported that myrcene, a monoterpene found in hemp seed oil, possesses amazing antioxidant and anti-aging properties. It helps to downregulate the production of reactive oxygen species  and thereby reverses the harmful effects of photoaging.
How To Use Hemp Oil?
1. As An Oil Cleanser
Oil cleansers are more effective in removing bad oils, make-up and sunscreen from your face than water cleansers.
- Mix hemp seed oil and castor oil in equal proportions.
- Now apply a small amount of the mixture and massage your face in a circular motion.
- Leave it on for a minute or two and wash/ wipe off.
2. As A Moisturizer
Hemp seed oil can be used as a moisturizer for all skin types.
- Take sufficient amounts of the oil in your palms and rub them together to mildly heat the oil.
- Now massage onto damp skin for better absorption.
- You can even add aloe vera gel, honey, coconut oil, almond oil, jojoba or olive oil with hemp seed oil and use it to moisturize your skin.
- Wash off after 1 hour.
- Apply twice daily for healthy skin.
3. In Face Packs
One of the best ways to include hemp oil in your skincare is by adding it to your face packs.
- To prevent premature skin aging, mix 1 ½ tablespoon of hemp seed oil with 1 tablespoon each of gotu kola and amalaki powders. Apply on your face and wash off after an hour.
- For dry damaged skin, add ½ tablespoon of hemp seed oil to 1 tablespoon of avocado paste and ½ tablespoon of yogurt. Mix well and apply on your face. Leave it on for an hour and wash off.
- To control excess oil and acne issues, mix 2 tablespoons of hemp seed oil with 1 tablespoon each of hibiscus, neem and triphala powders. Apply on your face focusing more on the oily and acne-prone areas. Wash off after an hour.
4. Along With Essential Oils
Hemp seed oil is a great choice as a carrier oil when you want to boost your essential oil’s anti-inflammatory and antioxidant abilities.
- Choose your essential oil as per your skin type and needs.
- Mix 5 drops of essential oil with 10 ml of hemp seed oil.
- You can even add 5 ml of hemp seed oil and 5 ml of a different carrier oil of your choice (coconut, almond, jojoba, safflower).
- Apply on your skin for not more than 15 to 20 minutes and wash off. Always do a patch test before using an essential oil for the first time.
5. Oil Pulling
According to Ayurveda, the process of oil pulling helps to eliminate harmful toxins from the body. This in turn aids in skin healing, cell renewal and improves your skin tone.
- Mix 1 tablespoon each of hemp seed oil and sesame oil.
- Swish the oils in your mouth for about 2-5 minutes and spit it out.
6. In Your Diet
- Adding hemp seed oil to your salads, sandwiches or soups can have great health benefits. The oil has an abundance of antioxidants such as flavonols, isoflavones, and other polyphenols  that can keep your skin healthy and young.
- About 2-3 tablespoons of hemp seed oil is considered a safe amount for daily consumption.
A face pack made of sandalwood powder, manjistha and hemp seed oil can help clear your acne scars.
Frequently Asked Questions About Hemp Seed Oil For Skin
1. Does Hemp Seed Oil Have Any Side Effects?
Side effects from topical application of hemp seed oil are quite rare. However, if you have sensitive skin or an existing condition of atopic dermatitis, it is advisable to consult your doctor before using hemp seed oil.
As per concerns regarding consumption, hemp seed oil may cause loose stools and nausea if ingested in excess.
2. Can Hemp Oil Be Used Directly On Skin?
Yes, cold-pressed hemp seed oil can be used as a carrier oil and applied directly onto skin. However, check for allergic reactions through a patch test if you're using hemp seed oil for the first time.
The Last Word
- Hemp seed oil has a high antioxidant content and is useful in the treatment of various inflammatory skin conditions.
- While topical application may have rare side effects, excess consumption can upset your stomach.
- Including hemp seed oil in your skincare routine can delay skin aging, fight free radical damage, treat acne and dermatitis, regulate excess oil and keep your skin aptly moisturized and healthy.
1. The Composition of Hemp Seed Oil and Its Potential as an Important Source of Nutrition, 2000 December
2. A History of Hemp in India, 2020 December
3. The Anti-Inflammatory Role of Omega-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids Metabolites in Pre-Clinical Models of Psychiatric, Neurodegenerative, and Neurological Disorders, 2020 February
4. Acyclic Diterpene Phytol from Hemp Seed Oil (Cannabis sativa L.) Exerts Anti-Inflammatory Activity on Primary Human Monocytes- Macrophages, 2022 August
5. Evaluation of the anti-inflammatory, anti-catabolic and pro-anabolic effects of E-caryophyllene, myrcene and limonene in a cell model of osteoarthritis, 2015 March
6. A global perspective on the epidemiology of acne, 2015 January
7. The ameliorative effect of hemp seed hexane extracts on the Propionibacterium acnes-induced inflammation and lipogenesis in sebocytes, 2018 August
8. Efficacy of dietary hempseed oil in patients with atopic dermatitis, 2005 April
9. Myrcene, An Aromatic Volatile Compound, Ameliorates Human Skin Extrinsic Aging via Regulation of MMPs Production, 2017 June
10. The Seed of Industrial Hemp (Cannabis sativa L.): Nutritional Quality and Potential Functionality for Human Health and Nutrition, 2020 July
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