Having polled a few people to get their take on the efficacy and usefulness of using Hemp Seed Oil topically, here are the results. We spoke with dermatologist Joshua Zeichner, MD; Dr. Raymond Schep, the Chief Chemist of Colonial Dames Co. and a Member of the CA Association of Toxicologists; Jennifer L. MacGregor, MD, at Union Square Laser Dermatology and estheticians Tammy and Amity Spiegel (CAP Beauty) and asked them to break down the benefits of Hemp Seed oil, from how great it is for dry skin to why we should mix it into a salad.
What is Hemp Seed Oil?
Hemp Seed Oil—not to be confused with Hemp Oil, which is a blanket term for all oils that come from hemp and can include cannabidiol (CBD) oil—is made by pressing the seeds to extract their oils .. hence, Hemp “Seed” Oil.
What makes is good for the skin?
It locks in hydration: According to Amity Spiegel, Hemp Seed Oil is high in Omegas (Essential Fatty Acids 3, 6, and 9 CLA, GLA and more – all of which help repair the skin barrier and form a seal over the skin to keep moisture trapped inside.
It also works as a humectant, attracting moisture from the environment onto the surface of your skin.
Anti-inflammatory: Those same omegas and natural vitamin e in the oil also helps lower inflammation in the skin.
Dr. Zeichner was impressed that the oil helps to soothe the skin: “Hemp Seed Oil is rich in fatty acids, which help hydrate and soothe inflamed skin” and can act as an anti-acneic. Which means that it “may modulate skin oil production, which is huge for people with skins prone to acne or overly oily skin.
How to Use It
Naturally, Hemp Seed Oil is being integrated into plenty of beauty products as a hydrator and anti-inflammatory. In particular, we love to use it with retinoids or after acids because it’s so effective at staving off inflammation. It works wonders for redness and acne, too.1 It’s pretty easy to know how much to apply—just use as much as you would any other oil. However, we would be remiss if we told you hemp seed oil’s effects ended at skincare.
Lisa Bronner, author of the blog Going Green with a Bronner Mom, wrote for the Huffington Post that because of the Amino Acids found in Hemp Seed Oil it is a good idea to apply it on and around your nails to help keep them supple, but also to build up the proteins in the nail. Which over time, helps to strengthen nails.
We are also a huge fan of incorporating hemp seed oil into your diet because its nutrients are so good for your body. We especially like to use raw hemp seeds in cooking, because they are in their natural state, so the body can absorb all the nutrients they offer more easily. Hemp seeds are great in salads, granolas, smoothies and mixed in with grains, deliciously delivering vitamins A and E, but also essential fatty acid, amino acids and trace minerals and a wealth of antioxidants.
It has a distinct, nutty taste and can be used on salads as a replacement for olive oil. “It is high in omegas and full of essential amino acids that help make younger, smoother-looking skin and reduces inflammation in the body.” says Tammy Spiegel, However, due to its high EFA content, it is a highly volatile oil, so it must be kept refrigerated never used in heating or cooking.