Since the acceptance of medical marijuana for any number of internal ailments, and the use of cannabis oil applied topically has exploded for painful skin conditions, the question has been asked, what happens to the skin when we smoke the weed rather than slathering it on.
As it turns out, nothing good. While cannabis oil applied to the skin itself is soothing and has healing properties, mary jane filtered through the lungs and into the bloodstream via smoking it causes a loss of Colligan, testosterone, and contracts blood vessels all of which are needed for healthy-looking skin.
From Pop Sugar:
“There are no known skin benefits to smoking weed,” [dermatologist Rachel Nazarian, MD, of Schweiger Dermatology Group] said. The womps continue: “Cannabis has reports of causing a constriction of blood vessels with consumption or smoking, which would make it harmful for skin by decreasing blood flow, killing off skin cells, and even forming ulcers.” On the flip side, Dr. Nazarian says she is a big fan of topical CBD and prescribes it to patients with burns, eczema, and poison ivy.
And a second opinion:
There are negative side effects for skin health that can result from marijuana use. THC in excessive quantities, Ostad warns, also tends to immediately increase testosterone levels 3 to 5 percent, potentially resulting in increased sebum oil production from the skin’s oil glands. Those oils can lead to acne breakouts, especially for those already prone to acne.
One thing that is clear, however, is that the drug’s effect on a user’s skin is influenced most by the method by which it is ingested or applied. “The delivery system is really critical,” Buka told HuffPo. Critically, Buka said that there is no real distinguishing factors between marijuana smoke and tobacco smoke when it comes to skin, and both can derail collagen production, leading to accelerated aging, and potentially irritating skin diseases like psoriasis and rosacea.
Cannabis giveth, but it also taketh away.
So, bottom line, just like with cigarettes, healthy skin seems to be dependent on avoiding smoking marijuana. For skin conditions that need relief, rubbing on salves with cannabis oil is okay, though.