Hemp Seed Oil, What is it and What is it Used for?

Hemp Seed Oil is a Cannabis derivatives that is amongst the most controversial and talked about ingredients in skin care today, with many products on the market including creams, balms, oils and serums, said to contain them. One of the largest questions out there regarding cannabis derivatives is related to what is legal and the quality/makeup of that ingredient. 

Cannabis derivative ingredients and products are placed into three categories;

  1. Cosmetic and Industrial Application
    • Low in both THC and CBD
  1. Medicinal Use
    •  High in CBD
  1. Recreational Drug Use
    • High in THC

What is THC and CBD?


Tetrahydrocannabinol, better known as THC, is the primary psychoactive compound found within Cannabis. This derivative is the most controversial due to its effects and is generally regulated so that industrial hemp is required to have less that 0.1% THC, compared to marijuana having levels of 3%-30%.


CBD (Cannabidiol) is another compound that offers medicinal benefits without the psychoactive properties. Despite being sold online, CBD enriched hemp oil is not legal, except in states which allow usage of marijuana for medicinal use.

So, what is Hemp Seed Oil and what is it Not?

As the name would portray, hemp seed oil is an oil extracted from the seeds of an industrial Cannabis plant species. However, hemp oil is almost free of THC and will therefore have no psychoactive properties/effects. The washed hemp seed contains no THC, but a small amount of THC is contained in the glands of the hemp plant however and the resin may stick to the seed during the manufacturing process and may result in a trace of THC but only a miniscule amount. THC, however, is contained in an oil called harsh oil or cannabis oil and it is important not to confuse the two.

Generally, hemp seed oil contains <25ppm of CBD however CBD is produced in the Cannabis Sativa Plant from the flowers, leaves and stalks of the plant, with the flower extract containing 4-8% CBD.

hemp seed
Hemp Seeds from Cannabis Sativa Plant

What is the Different Unfiltered vs Refined Hemp Seed Oil?

Depending on how it is processed, hemp seed oil can vary in colour, taste, odour and nutritional value, and therefore has different applications.

For example, unfiltered cold pressed hemp oil generally has a green tint, a nutty flavour and contains 75% unsaturated oils such as omega-3 and omega-6, whereas refined hemp odour is clear, odourless liquid lacking flavour and some nutrients.  Hemp seed oil contains both omega-3 and omega-6 (in a respective 3:1 ratio) unlike most seed oils, with one of the highest polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) concentrations when compared to all naturally occurring oils.

Therefore, from a nutritional stand point, unrefined hemp oil would be superior. However, it does not have a long shelf life and as a result, unless it is kept refrigerated in a dark container, it can quickly go rancid. Unlike refined hemp oil, which can be stored for longer and is more suited to topical application as it feels less greasy and lacks the earthy texture.

At eBotaniq, we sell refined hemp oil which has a (colour, odour, nutritional value) and is great for topical use and as an additive in (bases)

What are the Benefits of Hemp Seed Oil?

Topically used, hemp seed oil can have many benefits to both skin and hair.

Benefits of Hemp Seed Oil for Skin

Hemp seed oil is very healthy for your skin, due to the many essential fatty acids within it that suitably nourish and moisturise your skin. The small amount of CBD within hemp seed oil has been shown to activate the cannabinoid and PPAR Gamma receptor in the skin which allows for many benefits such as;

      • Improved moisture levels and skin barrier (protects skin from reverse osmosis effects which can cause skin to lose nutrients)
      • Anti-inflammatory (can improve acne)
      • Anti-aging (improves epidural lipids composition)
      • Oil control
      • Can relieve itching and can even help treat skin conditions such as Psoriasis, Atopic Dermatitis and Eczema.

Benefits of Hemp Seed Oil for Hair

Similarly, there are also many benefits of hemp seed oil for your hair. As you are applying essential fatty acids directly to your scalp. The Omega – 3 in the oil improves the overall texture of hair, making it appear shiny and feel stronger and thicker, and can also be used to prevent dandruff and scalp infections. Massaging with hemp seed oil can improve blood circulation to the head and brain, which can stimulate hair growth and can be used to reduce hair loss. 

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