Is CBD Oil the Anti-Stress Wonder It’s Cracked Up to Be? I Tried It to Find Out

When a friend recommended I try CBD oil, I initially balked. Weed has never been my thing, I thought. Besides, all I need is to cut back on my caffeine and get more rest. And maybe change my whole f-ing life. While all that may or may not be true, my friend’s persistent advocacy (read: nagging), plus the groundswell of popularity of this little nutritional supplement, made me curious, so I decided to investigate.

Are Weed Boutiques the New Wine Shops?


First off, what is CBD oil?
It’s an extract of part of the hemp plant called phytocannabinoids. They have been shown to have a bunch of healthy effects on the body, from relaxation to reducing inflammation.

Isn’t hemp code for marijuana?
The part of pot that makes it psychoactive is THC (short for Tetrahydrocannabinol). There’s no THC in CBD oil (or maybe only trace amounts), so it won’t get you high.

How do you take it?
I tried H. Hemp Co. Tincture by putting a dropperful into my morning smoothie. That’s the equivalent of about eight milligrams, which is a super-low dose (two dropperfuls are recommended). In half an hour, I noticed a new sort of relaxed feeling—not an I-took-an-antihistamine dizzy feeling, nor that glass-of-wine sleepy effect. I felt calm and alert, which is pretty much perfect.

What’s it taste like?
The stuff in cannabis that smells strongly weedy is called terpenes. Since CBD oil usually does contain terpenes, I was left with the mental image of me as a bovine, chomping on a bright green cannabis bush. But that taste goes away after you ingest the oil.

Does it last?
That’s what’s nice about the CBD oil—it’s not such a huge feeling that when it metabolizes away, I notice it (like, say, the post-caffeine crash). But it’s a nice way to buffer my own type A tendencies or to even out that after-lunch cappuccino. As for the anti-inflammatory effects and other claims like reducing cramps and supporting cardiovascular health, I don’t know if I’m any less close to a cardiac incident (remember, the number one killer of women), but I like to think so.

What if I don’t like smoothies?
You can squirt a mouthful right under your tongue or take in tea or coffee—but remember, it’s oil, so it will float on top of any water-based liquids, which is sort of a yucky characteristic. That’s why people like to take it in other forms, like chocolate or gumdrops. (A company named Lord Jones makes good ones.)

What about bath time?
Turns out, you can even absorb this through your skin (the body’s biggest organ). Try soaking in a citrus, lavender and birch oil-scented tub with Kush Queen bath bombs that contain 25 mg of CBD oil. (Just be sure to use the ones labeled Pure CBD, since the brand also makes a type called 1:1 that contains 25 mg of high-inducing THC.)

Any other way I can use it?
Um, well you can add it to your sex life: Foria Awaken is the non-psychoactive version of Foria Pleasure, the intimate lube that debuted a few years ago to raves with a blend of euphoria-inducing THC and CBD. The newer Awaken formula is less mind-blowing, but it’s supposed to relax you and also intensify your orgasms. Plus, it smells more like vanilla and mint rather than weed.

dana dickey

Senior Editor

Dana Dickey is a PureWow Senior Editor, and during more than a decade in digital media, she has scoped out and tested top products and services across the lifestyle space...