Hemp oil is rich in nutritious compounds that benefit the skin on a cellular level. These hemp compounds work together to help reduce and prevent wrinkles, offset signs of aging, and promote skin regeneration.
Hemp oil compounds achieve anti-aging cellular benefits by targeting the underlying causes of aging skin which is characterized by dryness, discoloration, redness, wrinkles, and loss of facial structure.
Research suggests that the main factors behind skin aging, the development of wrinkles, and impaired cellular regeneration are inflammation, oxidative stress, mitochondrial dysfunction, collagen loss, clogged pores and acne.
Studies show hemp oil compounds target causes of aging with anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, mitochondrial function improving, collagen-promoting, moisturizing, and acne-combating properties [ 1].
As a result, hemp oil can help to prevent signs of aging from developing, while simultaneously reversing the appearance of existing cellular damage such as fine lines and wrinkles. This is one powerful oil!
Hemp oil contains numerous components with anti-inflammatory properties including amino acids, fatty acids such as omega-3s and gamma-linoleic acid (GLA), and polyphenols.
These compounds help reduce skin inflammation, which can lead to cell damage and cell death, redness, dryness, and a compromised immune barrier. They can be applied directly to the skin in the form of a hemp balm or face oil.
A study of medical students found that when compared to control subjects, students who received omega-3s showed a 14% decrease in production of the inflammatory cytokine interleukin-6 (IL-6) [ 2].
Amino acids, fatty acids, and polyphenols are sometimes referred to as phenylpropionamides because they all have a phenylpropionamide portion in their molecular structure. Researchers have isolated over 30 phenylpropionamides from hemp seeds [ 3].
In a recent study, researchers tested the anti-inflammatory effects of hemp seed extract containing phenylpropionamides on mice with induced inflammation. They found that hemp seed extract administration reduced levels of inflammatory markers IL-1β, IL-6, and TNF-α [ 4].
Hemp seeds - and therefore hemp seed oil - are rich in natural antioxidants such as phytosterols, tocopherols, and phenolic compounds [ 5].
Antioxidants are substances that prevent or delay oxidative damage caused by reactive oxygen species (ROS) [ 6]. ROS such as free radicals are an unavoidable byproduct of cellular metabolism, and if left unchecked, they will wreak havoc on our cells, leading to damage, inflammation, and even cell death.
Our body’s antioxidant system is responsible for neutralizing ROS, which play a significant role in the pathology of various chronic conditions including cancer, metabolic disorders, neurodegenerative diseases, cardiovascular problems, dermatological diseases, gastrointestinal disorders, and immunity issues [ 7].
Research suggests that the antioxidants found in hemp seed oil are effective at supplementing our body’s natural antioxidant defenses and mitigating various types of ROS [ 8].
Just as there are different types of antioxidants with varying mechanisms of action, there are also different types of ROS that behave in different ways. Thus, not all antioxidants are effective at neutralizing all ROS [ 9].
Specific types of antioxidants have an affinity for specific types of ROS. For example, tocopherols found in hemp seed oil act as antioxidants that prevent the oxidation of unsaturated fatty acids [ 10].
In order to mitigate the negative effects of all of the different ROS produced by the body, it’s important to consume a variety of antioxidants.
Hemp contains various compounds that support mitochondrial function including linoleic and oleic acids as well as various vitamins and minerals.
Maintaining healthy mitochondrial function is of critical importance to skin health and regeneration. Manifestations of skin aging such as wrinkles, dryness, and discoloration are a consequence of mitochondrial dysfunction [ 11].
Increasing evidence in support of the close association between mitochondria and skin health has led both clinicians and aestheticians to consider mitochondria as a therapeutic target for skin health.
In a recent study, researchers were able to reverse wrinkly skin in mice with compromised mitochondria by restoring their mitochondrial function [ 12].
One way to restore mitochondrial function is by promoting mitochondrial fusion, a process by which 2 damaged mitochondria with different genetic defects fuse together to create one healthy mitochondrion.
Fusion counteracts cellular ageing and DNA damage by allowing the compromised mitochondria to individually encode what the other lacks, thus generating all of the necessary genetic components for a functional mitochondrion [ 13].
Oleic acid, an omega-9 fatty acid found in hemp oil may be one way to promote fusion. Researchers have shown that oleate, a salt ester of oleic acid, promotes mitochondrial fusion enabling genetic complementation which restores mitochondrial function [ 14].
The energy generated by mitochondrial respiration is necessary for skin cell renewal and cells cannot regenerate without it’s constant supply. However, mitochondrial respiration also inevitably produces reactive oxygen species that trigger inflammation, cause oxidative damage, and lead to mitochondrial dysfunction if they are not neutralized by the antioxidant system.
Hemp oil is rich in various antioxidants that target and neutralize reactive oxygen species to prevent associated inflammation and damage. This helps enable the regeneration of skin cells without the negative consequences of oxidative stress from respiration.
Hemp seed oil is rich in glycine, proline, hydroxyproline, and arginine, the amino acids that make up collagen, which makes up approximately 30% of the proteins in your body ( 15).
Collagen fibers lend structure and flexibility to our skin and other parts of our body such as bones, muscles, tendons, ligaments, blood vessels and others. However, after we turn 20 years old, studies suggest that our skin produces about 1% less collagen each year thereafter.
Researchers have found that hemp seed oil can promote collagen biosynthesis in vitro as well as that it can inhibit the activity of MMP-9, a compound that degrades collagen [ 16].
MMP-9 is a type of matrix metalloproteinase (MMP) which degrades several extracellular matrix components such as type I and IV collagen, which contribute to the structure and mechanical properties of tissues [ 16]. By inhibiting MMP-9 and thus preventing it from degrading our collagen, hemp seed oil may help to preserve existing collagen stores.
Collagen synthesis plays an important role in skin regeneration and wound healing. The findings showing hemp seed oil’s ability to promote collagen synthesis, suggest it has the potential to improve skin healing and regenerative processes at a cellular level.
Because it is rich in antioxidants, hemp seed oil also helps prevent free radicals from damaging cells and causing inflammation that weakens cellular repair mechanisms and leads to collagen and elastic fiber breakdown.
Hemp oil is non-comedogenic, meaning it moisturizes skin without clogging pores. Clogged pores, known as comedones, can take the form of blackheads, whiteheads, or bumps when they become blocked with oil, debris, dirt, or dead cell parts.
There is a comedogenic scale with ratings from 0 to 5. Hemp seed oil has a 0 on the comedogenic scale, meaning it will not clog pores whatsoever. When you look at the ingredients in your skin care products, be sure they all have this quality! The closer the number gets to 5, the higher the likelihood that the oil will clog your pores.
Although our cells naturally produce oil or sebum to nourish the skin, supply antioxidants, and lock in moisture, these abilities diminish as we age, leaving our skin dry, stressed, and in need of hydration.
By not clogging pores, non-comedogenic oils such as hemp oil provide antioxidants and nutrients while allowing the skin to breathe, remain hydrated, clean out waste, and turn over dead cells. This helps keep dry skin supple and oily skin free of acne.
Hemp oil has several benefits for acne, not the least of which is actually combatting
Cutibacterium acnes (C. acnes), the bacteria that causes it. Other benefits include regulating the production of oil, replenishing linoleic acid, and supplying vitamin E to the skin, all of which play a critical role in acne formation.
Acne vulgaris is a disease characterized by the inflammation of sebaceous glands which are attached to hair follicles on our skin. Sebaceous glands produce sebum, a mixture of lipids that moisturizes the skin, acts as a first line of immune defense, and is a method of transport by which antioxidants such as vitamin E get from the blood to the skin [ 17].
When sebum production becomes excessive it alters the composition and the oxidant/antioxidant ratio of skin surface lipids, leading to acne [ 18].
Studies show that hemp oil exhibits antimicrobial activity against the C. acnes (formerly Propionibacterium acnes or P. acnes) bacteria. When present on normal skin, C. acnes activates an inflammatory immune response and changes the lipid composition of the sebaceous glands [ 19].
One notable change in sebum composition associated with acne is a decrease in linoleic acid on the skin’s surface, a fatty acid that is abundant in hemp oil. Research suggests that diminished amounts of linoleic acid are one of several factors that lead to acne formation [ 21].
Decreased linoleic acid content doesn't just lead to acne, however. Low levels of this essential fatty acid also lead to impairment of skin barrier immune function, which may make the skin - especially when it is already compromised by acne - more susceptible to environmental pathogens and inflammatory substances [ 22].
Finally, acne patients have also been observed to have low levels of the antioxidant vitamin E [ 23], which suggests that topical administration of hemp oil which is high in vitamin E may be helpful in treating underlying causes of acne.
Hemp seed is one of the best sources of skin supporting amino acids and fatty acids. It contains the perfect 3:1 ratio of omega-3-linolenic acid and omega-6-linoleic acid, as well as oleic and gamma linoleic acid [ 24].
Hemp seed oils omega 3, 6, and 9 contents are essential for the building blocks of every cell membrane in the body, and its amino acids are responsible for cellular energy production.
The hemp seed is roughly 25% protein, 30% carbohydrates, and 15% insoluble fibre. It also contains carotene, phosphorous, potassium, magnesium, sulphur, calcium, iron and zinc as well as Vitamins E, C, B1, B2, B3, B6, which are critical to skin health [ 24].
In addition, hemp seed oil is rich in lignanamides such as cannabisin A, B, C, etc and other polyphenols, which have antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and antibacterial properties [ 25].
Experience the incredible benefits of hemp oil for your skin with our clean CBD skin care, Total Renewal Face Oil and our Body + Massage Oil daily skin moisturizer! Organic, cold-pressed hemp seed oil is the #1 ingredient in both of these skin care products as a powerful foundation for the healing benefits of CBD (cannabidiol).
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