CBD Salves: What Are They, and Should You Be Using One?

CBD salves are having a moment as more and more people catch on to their potent benefits. We’re big believers in the power of CBD and how it can positively impact the body by flipping on receptors in your endocannabinoid system, naturally helping with all kinds of different issues. 

Need a little relief during your period? Dealing with stomach upset or achy joints? CBD salve uses include all that and more. 

What Is a Salve?

A salve is a topical product that harnesses the power of mostly natural materials to provide a physical benefit. Basically, if it’s made out of primarily natural ingredients and you rub it on your skin, it’s probably a salve (or something similar)! 

Salves may be experiencing a renaissance, but they’re anything but new. Salves (and other similar balms and ointments) have been around since the late 1800s. These aren’t your great great grandfather’s questionable tinctures, though. 

Today’s salves use proven, high-quality ingredients with health benefits our ancestors never dreamed of. That’s not to say that there aren’t DIY salves out there. 

We recommend researching and sticking with a quality-tested product from a reputable company instead. That way, you’ll know your product has been tested and is safe. 

What Are the Benefits of Using a CBD Salve?

One of the most popular ingredients in salves is cannabidiol, known more commonly as CBD. CBD is a compound found in the cannabis plant, but it doesn’t produce any psychoactive effects because it doesn’t contain THC (the substance that makes you feel “high”). 

CBD has plenty of benefits without worrying about failing a drug test or feeling altered. That’s why it’s become a sought-after ingredient, not just in salves but in other products too. Want to know more about the specific CBD salve uses? Buckle up!

Soothes Gently

Instead of using harsh products that may have a lengthy list of side effects, CBD salve was designed to soothe the skin in a gentle, less abrasive way. When you use CBD salve on your body, you’re giving the affected area a little massage, too. 

The CBD starts working quickly but isn’t a shock to your system like other options. Plus, you can use as little or as much as you want and keep building to get optimal results. But how does it work? 

CBD salve makes use of the body’s innate cannabinoid receptors, little areas inside the body that are designed to receive messages and trigger specific actions. When topical CBD products are applied to the skin, they bind to those receptors and help provide the desired effects. 

They’re pretty amazing little molecules with a lot of power to positively impact your life and overall health.

Absorbs Quickly

While the exact time frame of how quickly your CBD salve will work depends on your product, most of them will get to work immediately. You'll usually notice a difference within 15 minutes of application. 

Again, this is related to the amount of those magical little cannabinoid receptors in the top two layers of the skin. They don’t have to travel all the way around and through the body to get to where they’re going; when you apply them topically, they’re already there and good to go. 

How many other products can claim those same benefits? It’s an area where CBD salve really shines.

Moisturizes Thoroughly

In addition to working quickly, CBD salves can also be an effective moisturizer. Let’s face it; our skin craves hydration — how fast do your lotions absorb, especially in the colder months?

 Many CBD salves use highly moisturizing carrier oils and ingredients that help lock moisture into the skin, like MCT coconut oil and beeswax. You’re getting the benefits of CBD and giving your skin what it needs to stay healthy and strong.

That’s the same reason many skincare products are now being made with CBD topicals. CBD’s soothing properties are excellent for helping manage certain skin concerns while also moisturizing dry skin. 

When Should You Use a CBD Salve?

So what CBD salve uses are the most beneficial for you? How can CBD salve make a difference in your life? Whether it's your first time using one, or you’re just looking for new ways for salves to enhance your self-care rituals, we’ve got you. 

Here are three different CBD salve uses and a brief overview of how each works. Disclaimer — individual results can vary. 

To Soothe Menstrual Discomfort

Period cramps can be a bummer, and many people have them every month for decades. But you don’t have to just deal with a life of fetal positions, heating pads, and threats to rip your uterus out — CBD salve may help soothe that discomfort and get you back on your feet. 

When your cramps start to become distracting, rub a generous amount directly onto your lower abdomen. The CBD (combined with botanicals like kava root, St. John’s Wort, and ginger — all organic) encourages those tight, crampy uterine and pelvic muscles to settle down, supporting healthy circulation and telling your cramps to chill out. 

A lot of the issue with menstrual discomfort is local inflammation in the pelvis. CBD has shown a lot of promise for supporting the body’s natural inflammatory response.

To increase your potential for relief, you can always double up by using relief melts with CBD. Instead of being applied on top of the skin, relief melts are designed to be inserted into the vagina (or anus), targeting discomfort from the inside out. (Pro tip: they’re also excellent for helping to make sex a lot more comfortable, especially when combined with a CBD-based lubricant).

To Ease Stomach Upset 

Sometimes, that pain in your stomach isn’t menstrual cramps but an unfortunate bubble gut situation. It happens to the best of us! While you should always seek medical advice for any significant GI upset, one of the more interesting CBD salve uses is that it may help relieve some minor stomach upset.

Think about how uncomfortable it can be when your stomach is crampy and gurgly. Applying CBD salve to your belly can help ease a lot of that gross feeling, helping you get the relief you deserve. Then you can drink some water, curl up on the sofa, and nap the rest of it away, undisturbed. 

A heating pad may also help, but don’t use it directly on the skin; take breaks every 15 minutes or so. And most importantly, if your GI distress continues or gets severe, contact your doctor.

To Calm Achy Joints

The older we get, the more our joints ache. It’s a trade-off for all that wisdom we’ve earned!

Another of the more beneficial CBD salve uses is its ability to calm achy joints, giving you back some comfort and mobility. In addition to the power of CBD, many salves include essential oils that further soothe achy joints and sore muscles. 

Eucalyptus oil, for example, can be beneficial, as can peppermint (and other menthols). Plus, they can have a cooling effect on the skin that works even more quickly than the CBD itself. Talk about an entourage effect!

To use CBD salve for achy joints, just apply it generously to the affected areas. For example, if your knees give you trouble, you’d want to rub it gently into your kneecaps. This allows for targeted relief, much like when you use it for menstrual discomfort or stomach upset. 

The Importance of Sourcing

Because CBD is a popular ingredient, plenty of products proudly feature it. Overall, this is a great thing; we believe in the power of CBD and want the world to experience it firsthand. 

However, because CBD isn’t controlled by the FDA the same way prescription drugs are, it’s up to you to source your ingredients from trustworthy, reputable companies. At Foria, we’re committed to purity and transparency because we want you to know you can trust us! 

Every product we sell has a Certificate of Analysis (COA). Instead of just showing part of the COA, we show you the naked truth. 

You’ll be able to see which third-party lab our CBD products are tested at, their potency summary (how much CBD is in them, the total percentage of cannabinoids, etc.), and that they’re free of heavy metals, mycotoxins, and pesticides. We want you to know what is (and what isn’t) in your products to feel as safe as possible using them. 

All of our CBD is USDA-certified organic, GMO-free, and regeneratively farmed. We use full-spectrum CBD (versus broad-spectrum CBD) because it contains as many beneficial compounds as possible without being psychogenic.

The Bottom Line

CBD salve uses are diverse and powerful, whether you’re dealing with menstrual cramps, sore, achy joints, or general stomach upset. The potency of CBD in all its forms is unparalleled, and we keep discovering more about it every single day. 

We trust it so much that we want you to see the difference CBD can make for yourself — you deserve to live your life with as little discomfort and as much pleasure as possible. 


Cure-alls and Salves | Smithsonian Institution

CBD: What You Need to Know | CDC

Antioxidative and Anti-Inflammatory Properties of Cannabidiol | PMC

The Case for the Entourage Effect and Conventional Breeding of Clinical Cannabis: No “Strain,” No Gain | PMC

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