CBD oil is the new kid on the natural remedies block. I’ve used other pure oils to help regrowth – but what about CBD oil for hair loss? CBD oil – the non-psychoactive cannabis plant derivative – is legal to use in the UK and has been touted as a natural remedy for hair loss and hair growth, but can CBD oil can treat thinning hair? Can CBD help hair growth? I tried a new serum for hair loss with CBD as full spectrum hemp oil. Read more about my experience to find out if it's worth the hype.
Using CBD Oil for Hair Loss & Thinning Hair
I’ve tried lots of hair loss treatments in my 20+ years of alopecia. A few of them worked, temporarily, although there’s no miracle cure for alopecia. BUT by changing up your lifestyle (lowering stress, following an anti-inflammatory diet and taking extra supplements if you’re deficient in certain minerals/vitamins), you can minimize hair loss and even regrow what’s lost – especially if you find a treatment that provides the right scalp environment.
CBD oil for hair loss is a treatment that’s new on my radar and one I’m keen to try –especially as it’s a far more natural alternative to things like minoxidil or steroid injections, which I really wouldn’t recommend!
Still, with a third of women experiencing hair loss at some point in their lives, many of us are desperate for anything that will help. And while Nioxin’s hair loss system has worked for me, I appreciate a chemical-filled shampoo isn’t for everyone. That’s why I’m on the hunt for a more natural hair growth product. Could CBD oil be it? Let’s find out!
Emma’s ‘not a doctor’ disclaimer
Hi there, I’m an alopecian, I’m not a doctor! Any advice I give is based on my own research and personal experiences. This site is however reader-supported. When you buy through external links, I may earn a tiny affiliate commission. Learn more here.
Psst… In a hurry? Then check out my Top 3 CBD products for hair loss and thinning hair here!
My Top 2 CBD for Hair Loss Products
Intro: What is CBD Oil?
CBD stands for “cannabidiol” and it’s derived directly from the hemp plant – which is a cousin of the marijuana plant. But in case you’re wondering if you can get high on your oil supply…you can’t. That’s because the stuff that’s extracted from agricultural hemp has super-low levels of tetrahydrocannabinol. Also known as THC, that’s the part of psychoactive cannabis (marijuana) which causes controversy.
So unlike THC, CBD has no intoxicating effects. It does, however, offer up a bunch of physical and psychological benefits.
Luckily, the 2018 Farm Bill removed hemp (and as a result, hemp-based CBD) from the clutches of the Drug Enforcement Authority – which, if you’ve watched enough Breaking Bad, you’ll know simply as the DEA. Meaning CBD is perfectly legal. And anyone can enjoy its many benefits, whether it’s to sleep better, to lower stress… or even tackle autoimmune conditions like alopecia.
LA Says: A word of warning: quality is REALLY important when buying CBD oil. Don’t take cheap shortcuts and only go through a reputable source. Because not only do low-grade CBD oils miss out on the main health benefits, they could even contain harmful toxins. Now, I’m no CBD expert but I have researched over 20 brands to bring you ones I trust. And if you want to shop further, CBD Solutions is an online marketplace with a good rep.
CBD for hair loss: does it really work?
Nowadays, CBD in all forms – gummies, tinctures, vapours, topical creams – is used to treat anxiety and depression, insomnia and post-traumatic stress disorder, and to manage chronic pain. There are PLENTY of articles, studies and dedicated websites about CBD oil and its health benefits already, so I won’t go in detail here. (You could get started with this NCBI article about CBD and anxiety/sleep disorders or this post about its role in treating chronic pain.
As you research, try to see beyond the gimmicky marketing and, if you want to try CBD oil, read in-depth reviews on different brands – even beyond the scope of this post. I won’t be offended; like I said, I’m no CBD oil expert
What I will focus on, in this post, is whether CBD could treat hair loss. And how exactly it could help you with thinning or shedding hair – even to regrow the hair you’ve lost. Because while it doesn’t magically sink into your hair follicles to make your hair longer and thicker, it does work with your body to provide the optimal conditions for healthy hair.
These body-focused benefits include:
- Better sleep: When we sleep more, we’re less stressed. Meaning the body produces less cortisol, the “fight or flight” hormone commonly linked to hair loss.
- Lower inflammation: Chronic inflammation can lead to acne, weight gain, mood swings, digestive disorders, menstrual problems and hair loss, among other nasty things. CBD oil suppresses inflammation in the body to keep these symptoms of chronic inflammation at bay.
- Homeostasis: Our endocannabinoid system in the body regulates biological processes like our ability to deal with pain, our moods and our appetite. CBD oil has been shown to positively affect this system, achieving homeostasis: a state of balance between physiological and biological processes, including hair follicle growth.
3 more ways CBD oil helps your hair
I’ll be honest and say there aren’t enough clinical studies focusing specifically on the benefits of CBD for hair loss and scalp health. Sure, it’ll positively impact your general health, reduce stress levels and help you sleep better…but can it directly help hair growth, or stop hair fall in the first place?
Well, according to hair experts, CBD oil has a super-impressive nutrient profile. And so far, anecdotal evidence suggests great results.
Here are just a few hair-specific benefits of CBD oil:
1. Boosts scalp health
At the risk of repeating myself yet again, let me say: A healthy scalp = healthy hair. There’s no two ways about it. If you’ve got an itchy, flaky or irritated scalp, if you’re prone to things like dandruff or seborrheic dermatitis, if you’ve got inflammation or fungal problems leading to a dry scalp – or excess sebum leading to an oily one – that’s not going to help hair growth.
In fact, these conditions will result in damage and brittle hair snapping – the kind of hair loss you might experience even without an autoimmune condition like alopecia to contend with. This immune response leads to more inflammation, so your hair follicles shrink to protect themselves. And any further scalp problems makes them shrink faster, increasing the rate of hair loss.
On the other hand, if you’ve got a clean, healthy scalp that’s free from inflammation and bacteria…that’s the sort of foundation for hair to take root. Sure, you mightn’t be able to stop your autoimmune response – but you can minimize damage and encourage hair growth again once the “attack” has passed.
CBD contains lots of essential vitamins and minerals to nourish the scalp: calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, potassium and vitamin E, to name a few. Plus, it’s a natural anti-inflammatory with antioxidants (vitamins A, C and E) that ward off bacteria.
Finally, CBD oil is an “adaptogen”. That means it regulates scalp sebum production (i.e. balances your oil levels), bringing a healthy scalp to all hair types. Yay!
2. Protects & Repairs
Ever heard of keratin? Probably, all those swishy-haired ladies in shampoo ads can’t stop gushing about the stuff. Well, your hair is made up of this protein, which is less vulnerable to tearing or scratching than other proteins. At least, it should be.
When we’re deficient in certain proteins, our poor skin, hair and nails (made up of keratin) are often the first to suffer. One way around this is to take biotin-rich supplements – because biotin improves keratin infrastructure, limiting chances of breakage and damage.
Another is to use a protein treatment designed for weak or broken hair. CBD oil contains all 21 amino acids, known as the “building blocks” of protein. Just like your childhood Lego games, enough of these blocks, stuck together frequently through dedicated practice, can make a masterpiece – a strong and impenetrable protein fortress.
Not only do these amino acids make CBD particularly good for dry hair, its fatty acids and antioxidants provide a protective layer around the cuticle to reduce environmental or styling-related damage. So it’s great for chemical or color-treated hair, too! Even more exciting, studies show how natural oils can actually reverse cuticle damage and other effects of environmental stress on the follicle. So even if your hair seems hopeless…there’s hope for you yet!
3. Encourage hair growth?
I have a question mark on this one because there’s a limited amount of scientific evidence out there. BUT it looks promising, especially considering the factors above: CBD oil improves scalp health and prevents/reverses damage. It also increases cerebral blood flow: boosting circulation and delivering the oil’s vital nutrients to the scalp.
These proven hair growth nutrients include Omega-3, Omega-6 and Omega-9 – which “accelerate the transition to the anagen phase” of the hair-growth cycle. I’m no scientist but when I started taking fish oil supplements for digestive problems, happy side effects were: better mood (apparently, omegas reduce inflammation/anxiety), longer nails, glowing skin and – yep – thick, shiny and healthy hair!
Finally, CBD contains gamma linoleic acid (GLA) – an unsaturated Omega-6 fatty acid that’s a clear contributor to hair growth. For instance, one study showed that a mixture of coconut oil and the nigella sativa plant (which is rich in GLA) was more effective for hair growth than either coconut oil alone or coconut oil mixed with other herbs.
So even though there mightn’t be tonnes of clinical trials purporting CBD’s hair growth effects, I’m working from that handy adage: “It’s what’s inside that counts.” And what’s inside CBD counts for a lot.
‘Can CBD Oil Treat Thinning Hair and Hair Loss?’
Question: Can CBD oil treat hair loss? I have thinning hair and heard this is good for regrowth.
Answer: Hi, Jools. You haven’t mentioned the cause of your hair loss but, regardless, there is no clinical evidence that suggests CBD oil can treat thinning hair.
Cannabiniol oil – also known as cannabis oil and CBD oil – comes in a range of strengths and strains, depending on the type of hemp leaves it is produced from.
There are around 113 active chemicals in the cannabis sativa plant, known as cannabinoids. The two key components are tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD). Whilst THC is the banned psychoactive known for getting people high, CBD is considered an anti-psychotic and makes up approximately 40 per cent of cannabis extracts.
Hemp and marijuana are both cannabis sativa plants, but differ in that hemp plants tend to be farmed for their non-psychoactive CBD benefits, whilst marijuana plants have often been modified to ensure high levels of THC.
Studies are still underway but CBD has already been found to be beneficial to a range of health problems including epilepsy, Alzheimer’s disease, anxiety and inflammation. Furthermore, it has a low side-effect profile, being largely well-tolerated with the main complaint in users being tiredness. In August 2016 it was reported in The Independent that the NHS is developing a CBD vape pen, known as the MediPen vaporiser, to help people deal with a range of health issues. Despite this, it is not presently MHRA licensed, nor FDA approved for the treatment of any condition.
Cannabiniol use for medical purposes is legal in many countries, including Australia, Canada, Denmark, Greece, Italy and Germany, whilst in America the law varies by state to state. Though cannabis use is illegal in the UK, carrying potential penalties for possession of up to 5 years in prison, an unlimited fine or both, the use of CBD is legal.
In some cases the NHS is actually able to prescribe CBD, commonly referred to as medical marijuana, though this is generally for pain management when other options have been exhausted, and not for issues considered to be ‘cosmetic’ and where its effects are unproven, such as hairloss.
One reason CBD oil appears to have been widely touted on the internet as a potential hair loss solution, is due to its nutritional properties. It is rich in the fatty acids omega 3 and omega 6 – something researchers at the University of Seville found to be present in the ‘1/4 ratio’ considered optimal for health. It is also understood to contain good levels of linoleic and gamma linoleic acid (GLA) – essential fatty acids which promote the maintenance of normal hair growth – as well as calcium, phosphorus, magnesium and potassium. Additionally, cannabiniol oil is said to be high in vitamin E.
As such, it may help to improve the condition of the hair in the same way following a balanced, healthy diet would. However, CBD oil is highly unlikely to treat a medical hair loss condition, especially if this is a genetic complaint – namely Male Pattern Baldness or Female Pattern Hair Loss, both of which cause thinning hair anywhere in the vertex area from the crown to the hairline, in those affected.
Despite it usually being taken orally, we are aware of CBD oil being used as a topical treatment for scalp conditions such as eczema and seborrhoeic dermatitis, though the evidence to support this type of therapy is currently solely anecdotal.
Discovering an effective, natural treatment or cure for hair loss would be fantastic but, to date, there are none that have been proven to work in regrowing hair or preventing baldness. There are, however, clinically-proven pharmaceutical hair loss treatments available, which – at Belgravia – are offered alongside additional supporting products and therapies tailored towards maximising hair growth and condition.
These include FDA-cleared low-level laser therapy (LLLT) devices, such as the LaserBand products, and premium Hair Vitalics food supplements, in highly-targeted Men’s and Women’s formulations, comprising a range of beneficial vitamins, minerals, amino acids and botanical extracts including selenium, zinc and biotin to promote normal, healthy hair growth.
The first step we would recommend you take, however, is to establish the precise reason your hair is thinning. There are a number of reasons that this can happen and a professional diagnosis is usually the best way to ensure you know exactly what is happening, why and how to address it.
The Belgravia Centre
The Belgravia Centre is the leader in hair loss treatment in the UK, with two clinics based in Central London. If you are worried about hair loss you can arrange a free consultation with a hair loss expert or complete our Online Consultation Form from anywhere in the UK or the rest of the world. View our Hair Loss Success Stories, which are the largest collection of such success stories in the world and demonstrate the levels of success that so many of Belgravia’s patients achieve. You can also phone 020 7730 6666 any time for our hair loss helpline or to arrange a free consultation.
I Tried CBD Hair Serum — Here’s What Happened
I’ve been on a quest to grow my hair out after years of bleaching and coloring compromised my strands to the point of no return. Although I’ve been taking supplements, eating right, and avoiding heat styling, my hair has been slow to grow back. It’s been a frustrating and at times disheartening process trying to get my hair to grow back in at a normal pace, so when VEGAMOUR asked me to try their new CBD hair serum for a few months, I didn’t think twice. Their GRO+ Advanced Hair Serum features CBD. But they also have the original GRO Hair Serum without CBD available.
GRO+ Advanced Hair Serum from the GRO+ collection features CBD in the form of full spectrum hemp oil, so you get all the benefits, and they break up the CBD molecules so they absorb into your scalp better and are more effective. I couldn’t wait to get started using their CBD serum!
By now, you’ve probably become familiar with one of the hottest beauty buzzwords at the moment: CBD. Cannabidiol, aka CBD, is derived from the cannabis plant. Hair growth products made with CBD oil are on the rise, and they’re about to take your hair game to a whole new level. Keep reading if you’ve ever wondered if CBD products are worth the hype.