Over the last several months, cannabidiol (CBD) products have begun to infiltrate our daily lives. CBD is found in oils taken sublingually, infused salves and lotions, coffee beverages...even in pet products. There’s no doubt it’s all the rage right now, but is it a real deal service or add-on that could give sunless providers a way to attract even more clients...or just another marketing gimmick?
There isn’t a lot of in-depth information available on this hot new topic when it comes to the sunless industry specifically. At ASTP, we saw a lot of questions arise after Sunless Summit when Janet + Dorothy (JD) offered up samples of their product in the gift bags. So we asked Melissa Dymond with Janet + Dorothy to answer ASTP members’ questions and to open the dialogue on the potential risks and benefits that come with adding CBD-related products to our list of services.
JD sells a CBD additive that they call PCR Herbal Concentrate, making them one of only a handful of companies currently providing this product to our industry. Melissa is a wealth of knowledge on the subject and is working hand-in-hand with her manufacturer to legitimize spray-on CBD treatments for the sunless industry, while also educating industry pros on the subject.
Below is our conversation on all things JD PCR Concentrate.
Let’s start by talking about your product that you call PCR Concentrate. I think this will give readers some important info on the perceived benefits that CBD-based products can give our clients.
CBD (cannabidiol) is one of over 60 active chemical compounds (or ‘cannabinoids’) in the marijuana plant. CBD functions by binding to cannabinoid receptors in the body’s endocannabinoid system.
There are many different kinds of CBD on the market. Our specific product is THC-free and rich in phytocannibinoids, terpens, and fatty acid. We choose to call it PCR hemp oil. Readers may be more familiar with hemp seed oil. Hemp seed oil is great for skin but doesn’t contain phytocannibinoids. When applied to the skin, the PCR hemp oil absorbs quickly and easily.
We are providing a whole body treatment when we spray tan clients. Using prep or priming spray and spray tan solutions as carriers for a PCR Herbal Treatment is a great way to add on additional services with no change to or need for different equipment.
CBD combats dryness and soothes skin - it is said to have three-times the antioxidant load as Vitamin C. And we all know dryness is the enemy of spray tans. The PCR Herbal Concentrate is packed with other herbs and natural ingredients that are known to help nourish skin, as well. This furthers our pursuit of a “cleaner” spray tan experience for our clients.
Despite being “oil”, our PCR formulation is water soluble. It’s highly absorptive on the skin because of patent pending nano-technology, and easily blends with the prep spray or solution without any negative effects on stability of the product or separation. It feels and sprays the same as a solution or prep that isn’t infused.
Because the product is absorbed into the skin - the client doesn’t wash it off when they rinse their bronzer. The tanning set time lends itself to the PCR Concentrate having a longer time on the skin for maximum absorption. It’s the same concept as why we prefer spray tans over self tanners - even coverage, whole body treatment, efficient and mess free.
What are the benefits of this treatment? Skin benefits, relaxation, reduced anxiety?
As a spray tanner - and I am going to say this as though no one reading this is a nurse or physician or licensed in any way beyond spray tanning certifications - we do not and will not discuss any concrete benefits from CBD except for what it does to skin with our clients. If you want to advertise its other effects in a blanketed way, yes, I believe that’s fine.
As a licensed esthetician, you cannot legally say, “You have tinea versicolor.” You cannot diagnose or treat. You legally have to say, “It looks like tinea versicolor to me, but you should get it checked by your doctor. I use tea tree oil or dandruff shampoo to treat mine but your doctor will give you options.”
If you are not an esthetician (or even if you are), keep this in mind. If a licensed skin care professional cannot diagnose or treat beyond cosmetic layers, that’s your boundary. Frame all of your talk around this idea.
In practice with the CBD it would go something like, “It has shown to be anti-inflammatory on the skin and internally” not “It will stop your pain and heal your eczema and MS symptoms.” Keep it simple and keep your boundaries clear.
Is there science backing the CBD benefits for single use application, like would be the case for a spray tan, or is repeated use required?
Personally, I think the more intelligent route, and wider reaching add-on, is in conjunction with a prep spray toner. So in that case, yes, adding it to your spray tan service, the CBD will counter some of the drying effects of your spray tan solution, as will the herbal hydrosol concentrate ingredients, if that’s how you choose to apply it.
When it comes to adding it to solution, one time use will likely create less dry skin on the client and you can also say you’re spraying them with these amazing herbs that are known to help skin, so that’s a benefit. Personally, my clients see a longer lasting tan and more even fade when added to the solution itself. They also like that it counters some of the ingredients in spray tan solution with some really great herbs that help skin, including CBD. Adding it your spray tan solution will also be beneficial as another layer of dosing topically - an easy way to add mg to the dose on a client.
That said, if you use it as a prep toner, you are getting that hydration first (or in addition to), which is benefitting the outcome and application of your spray tan. You will see a difference immediately in client’s skin tone and dry areas when you spray them with this infused product.
Additionally, with the prep toner route, you can create a stand-alone treatment that can be repeated daily without issue. Repeated use shows the greatest benefit, as the CBD and other receptors and terpenes in your endocannibinoid system build positively with repeated use (see resource document below). Like any skin care product, repeated use is essential for lasting and more pronounced results.
Let’s talk legalities, because I think there is a lot of confusion around this and rightfully so. How can we check state regulations on use and sale of CBD derived products?
The Farm Bill creates an opening where hemp-derived CBD is legal in all 50 states to sell, ship and use. And as THC is continuing to be decriminalized at a rapid rate, most aren’t going to care about CBD without THC produced from hemp.
That said, I repeatedly recommend NOT using the term “CBD” or even marijuana graphics in your advertising and service names. Credit card processors are slower to change their rules on what they allow to be sold via their systems, so it is wise to err on the safe side and use a different name. For example, at my sunless studio Shade and Seeker I use the PCR Skin Treatment name and PCR add-on for my services.
So, CBD is legal in 2019?
Yes, it is legal to purchase and consume hemp-derived CBD in all 50 states. Marijuana derived CBD is not legal on a federal level and that’s an important distinction. The government classifies “hemp” as any plant of the cannabis family that contains less than 0.3% THC and classifies “marijuana” as any plant of the cannabis family that contains greater than 0.3% THC. You need to check your specific state for any additional restrictions.
Is your CBD derived from hemp or whole plant cannabis?
As stated above, only CBD derived from hemp is legal in all 50 states. You cannot legally sell or buy (depending on state and/or prescriptions) cannabinoid oil with THC in it, so whole plant cannabis is not used or a viable way to make it. It has no THC in it at all and the plant itself before process had less than 0.3%. My CBD is made from hemp using nanotechnology so it is highly absorptive via skin and has high bioavailability. My certificate of analysis is linked below.
Are there any drug or product contradictions that we should be aware of?
Just like any add-on, clients with concerns need to consult their doctor. Allergies are my top concern with any topical I am applying to skin - spray tan or otherwise. You should always do a waiver and consult. Smart boundaries are no one under 18 and no one pregnant or nursing. Tell any client taking medications that would cause pause to ask their doctor and refuse the service until they do so.
Should we be prepared with any additional forms or consent?
Personally, I carry the ChicBD line (a line of CBD infused skincare) for treatments we do here in- studio at Shade and Seeker. It is a topical line that has been in use for some time now and none of the estheticians I know of use any sort of additional waiver. There’s no need for one that I have seen or researched.
You have a general waiver that should be sufficient, but please do not use this product if you are not at a level where you are using a waiver in your business. Again, allergies would be my top concern when it comes to any sort of reaction or potential liability. You are adding new ingredients to your solutions, toner, or post-tan moisturizing spray, so just as you would inform your client when you add shimmer or slimming drops or more bronzer or DHA drops, you need to consult with them about adding CBD.
What about any additional insurance requirements?
You aren’t making medical claims or touching skin. This is considered a cosmetic add-on. No additional insurance should be required, but check with your insurer and be smart with your verbiage and marketing.
A big topic in our own ASTP group has been the scientific backing of CBD applied this way. Have any studies been done? Are we witnessing placebo effect? Is this really doing anything of benefit for our clients or is it all just a marketing gimmick?
Humans have an endocannibinoid system that has really just been discovered and studied since the 1990’s. We are learning more everyday. Honestly, in my opinion, many of the topical products out there are marketing gimmicks.
Beauty Independent published a great article called “Weedwashing: How Brands are Trying to Cash In on Beauty’s Biggest Trend,” that backs this belief and shows the research to prove it. Topicals that don’t have a high enough dose of CBD in them - they have to be higher than a sublingual - won’t work. I believe 1000 mg is the lowest you can go per 32 oz for any sort of effective starting point. The Beauty Independent article thinks it should be 100 mg per ounce with the idea you’re likely not to use an ounce of salve all at once. You will use an ounce, at minimum, for full body sprays.
Placebo effect would be more geared toward internal responses of CBD. For your liability, you are not going to promote your CBD add-on for having an internal response unless you are acting as a medical professional. If the client claims their own internal response...great. But, internal is not our marketed focus here. You are going to promote this add-on for its skin care benefits.
You will visibly see dry skin go away as you spray it on your clients. Your tans will be applied to prepped skin that is glowing and moisturized and better prepared to absorb tanning solution.
If your client has other effects such as lowered pain or relaxed feelings or better sleep - which I believe they will - that’s a bonus. Any research a client coming in for this treatment will have done prior will give them that information. They can do what they want with it, but it’s not for you to push.
So you believe 1000 mg is the minimum effective “dose” per 32 ounces of liquid carrier (or approximately 31 mg per ounce)?
Correct. I believe that less than 1000 mg per 32 ounces of liquid is not effective topically. There is no standardization of dosing for CBD, it is trial and error and that’s why I recommend layering and repeated use and experimenting.
Again, repeated use means repeated clients (as long as they see and feel an effect) and that means more business for spray tanners. Low and slow is the way to approach this. You want a daily or bi-weekly client with this, not someone on a spray tan timeline. You can spray this over a spray tan for hydration too, which is great, and another potential add-on service.
Melissa, we appreciate your willingness to answer these questions thoroughly. This is a new and exciting product and service offering that shows so much potential benefit to us as spray tan studio owners...yet there’s still so much that is unknown. This helps tremendously! Any final thoughts you’d like to share with readers?
Dosing of this product is really important so as to not be yet another gimmicky marketing ploy in our industry.
As a spray tan artist, adding CBD to your services and creating CBD topical application services should be kept simple. You need to educate yourself on liability as it pertains to your individual business and location and you should always do your own research. Those of us who have been in the industry awhile learned the hard way with “organic tans” not to blindly trust what we’re being told by manufacturers. Your tanning solution is not organic even if there’s some organic aloe in it. It’s a marketing claim and I can see CBD becoming much of the same.
My stand, and the research shows, less than 1000 mg per bottle of CBD for topical use is not going to yield a result per ounce on most people and is a gimmick. Point blank, using less than that will hurt all of us trying to make this a viable service by undermining efficacy.
I offer this product because I use it and I want others to succeed and expand their abilities within this industry, as well. It may be counterintuitive to say as someone who is selling a product, but this is not for everyone. It could be, no doubt, but it requires the commitment to continual learning as laws change and research comes around. I will do whatever I can to help along the way, as I am in the same boat and learning every day too.
I started this CBD journey, in part, because I was trying to find an easier way to apply CBD salve to my grandmother. I do not react well to THC in any way, so I didn’t want to start there with her, but she had some relief from non-THC CBD salve and I did, too. I think this service is on track with the exponential growth that we will see over the next few years with CBD and cannabis products (there’s so much being learned about CBG and the other 120 odd terpenes!) that we are at ground level.
I can only speak of my manufacturer, which is Folium Biosciences. I’m happy to provide that information because they have wholesale stipulations that protect me. My certificate of analysis on my product is below and always available at janetdorothy.com.
I’m thinking this will open up more questions, and I’m definitely open to yielding questions and comments. I would love to talk all things Janet + Dorothy, too, so please don’t be afraid to reach out.