Weed, marijuana, mary j, green, grass, pot, smoke or just cannabis – whatever you call it, chances are you've never considered it a key part of your skincare routine. Until now.
With the UK finally making medical cannabis available on prescription, sales of CBD skincare products higher than ever before (Holland and Barrett recently made headlines as the first high street stockist), celeb endorsement from Gwyneth's Goop crowd, and packaging more Insta-worthy than Fenty, not to mention the anti-inflammatory skin benefits, cannabis-infused beauty might just be the wellness trend you'll want to get addicted to.
Previously the preserve of your mate's hippy mum in the form of hemp-infused hand cream, 2018's CBD skincare offering is all about a consumer that's ethically-informed, under 30 and knows their scientific skincare terminology.
Oh, and they've probably already posted a mini-series of tried and tested Insta stories by the time you've read this.
Less medical, more Insta-friendly, brands like MGC Derma, Malin + Goetz, and Cap Beauty are targeting the Glossier generation with everything from sleep spray and day cream, to Scandi chic perfume and oil you add to your morning granola.
So, clearly, cannabusiness is booming. But what exactly is CBD? Otherwise known as cannabidiol, CBD is a purified, non-psychoactive compound harvested from the cannabis plant. Nope, it can't actually get you high, but it can give those who suffer from eczema, psoriasis and acne an alternative solution for their skin issues.
'CBD IS A PURIFIED, NON-PSYCHOACTIVE COMPOUND HARVESTED FROM THE CANNABIS PLANT. AND NO, IT CAN'T GET YOU HIGH.'
'CBD works with your body's internal endocannabinoid system, which means that our cosmetics collaborate with your body as opposed to merely being on it', says CEO of MGC Derma, Roby Zomer. 'We've seen this quite clearly in the testing for our Derma Plus line with volunteers seeing a reduction of at least 60% in their symptoms related to Psoriasis, Eczema, Seborrhea, Dermatitis and Acne.'
But not everyone is convinced. Dr Frances Prenna Jones aka London's go-to cosmetic dermatologist has an understandable cynicism towards the subject.
'I think it is a bit of a hype,' she says. 'It is a great ingredient, but no more special than a lot of other emollient and anti-inflammatory ingredients like ginger, for instance.'
Float the idea of swapping your Nivea for a narcotic to friends/co-workers and you might get the response of 'Didn't The Body Shop do that ages ago?'
And they'd be right, The Body Shop's best-selling Hemp range has existed for decades. Yet for the new gen eco-activist, one who wants their beauty products with a side of almost-illegal glamour, tried-and-trusted hand creams that are sold pervasively just won't cut it.
'IT IS A GREAT INGREDIENT, BUT NO MORE SPECIAL THAN A LOT OF OTHER EMOLLIENT AND ANTI-INFLAMMATORY INGREDIENTS LIKE GINGER.'
So is it all just a matter of re-branding?
'Gone are the days of the pot leaf logo or its cliché association with Bob Marley. Now beauty brands are creating products that don't carry the traditional tropes of cannabis and treating CBD like any other luxury beauty product,' says Trend Forecaster at The Future Laboratory, Jessica Smith.
'The convergence of wellness and beauty has encouraged a more open-minded consumer', continues Smith, 'one that is willing to reconsider cannabis' stoner image into something more sophisticated'.
Sophisticated and celebrity-approved, it's also no coincidence that the burgeoning popularity of CBD skincare has aligned with the past year's A-list obsession with wellness. Gwyneth Paltrow, ever at the forefront of trending natural remedies, swears by CBD oil. 'If I have a particularly stressful time, someone gave me some CBD oil in a little drop. It doesn't make you stoned or anything, just a little relaxed,' the Goop founder told Into The Gloss.
'BEAUTY BRANDS ARE CREATING PRODUCTS THAT DON'T CARRY THE TRADITIONAL TROPES OF CANNABIS AND TREATING CBD LIKE ANY OTHER LUXURY BEAUTY PRODUCT.'
So is the Goopification of a substance that has traditionally been fraught with cultural prejudice making CBD skincare so hot right now, or do the skincare credentials speak for themselves? And, more importantly, is it even legal?
Despite the UK recently becoming the world's biggest exporter of legal cannabis (used in oversees medical products that arguably contradict the UK's own laws, but that's a whole other article...) the law still categorises it as a Class B drug that is 'illegal to possess in any form'.
Where does this leave the CBD serums and sleep sprays, then?
'The UK's policy has been a bit unclear, explains MGC Derma's CEO Roby Zomer, 'but it is clear enough that they are allowing CBD products to be sold, and that the public is responding. At the end of the day, MGC products are fully certified and legal in the EU, and despite Brexit, these certifications should be more than enough to demonstrate their viability in the UK market.'
While European law is more lenient on the use of cannabis and CBD products, the fact that they're also being sold in the UK marks a more relaxed and open-minded attitude. So, more than just a quick way to feel a bit more badass, CBD skincare finds itself part of a politically-charged legalisation debate with a chunk of Brexit chat thrown in for good measure.
Oh, and it's pretty good for your skin, too. As the online stockists and CBD champions Cult Beauty put it, 'This brings a whole new meaning to the phrase "skin up".'