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The world’s first CBD facial comes to the UK



As the world’s first industry-endorsed CBD facial and cosmeceutical skincare range launches in the UK, Cannabis Health speaks to those behind it.

Now widely recognised for its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, cannabis is changing the face of the beauty industry.

As the latest go-to ingredient for skin and beauty brands, an influx of CBD-infused products have hit the shelves in recent years, with an industry report published earlier this year suggesting that the CBD skincare market is projected to generate £734m in annual sales by 2024.

Meanwhile leading doctors have touted the potential of cannabis to treat rare and challenging skin conditions, such as atopic eczema, allergic contact dermatitis and psoriasis, as the UK’s first medical cannabis dermatology service launched at the Sapphire Clinic in London in September.

But until now, no one has brought the two together.

The Grass Roots Facial, the world’s first CIBTAC (Confederation of International Beauty Therapy and Cosmetology) endorsed CBD facial procedure – using a full range of cosmeceutical CBD skincare products – is coming to the UK from October.

Created by global beauty training provider SkinTres, founders Jo Minchin, Lyndsey Price and Zoe Wilkinson saw the potential of the cannabinoid and set out to create a dynamic, results-driven and relaxing facial – but quickly realised that they would need to develop their own skincare range too.

SkinTres founders (from left) Lyndsey Price, Jo Minchin and Zoe Wilkinson

“Other brands were doing a nod to CBD, with products containing 100mg or less, but nobody was doing the cosmeceutical skincare that most women in their 30s and 40s now are using,” said Jo Minchin, co-founder of SkinTres, Grass Roots Facial and Grass Roots Skin.

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“If you wanted to incorporate CBD into your skincare, you’d have to buy a CBD oil and use this alongside your existing skincare routine –  it was adding too much and is also quite expensive.”

She added: “We saw this gap in the market and it felt like a perfect opportunity to incorporate CBD into our own range of cosmeceutical skincare, along with retinols, Vitamin C and hyaluronic acid.”

There are initially seven products in the Grass Roots Skin range from the AHA Cleansing Wash and AHA Skin Tonic at £28.99, to the Skin Drench Super Serum, containing 15 percent vitamin C, hyaluronic acid and 300mg of CBD isolate – which at £54.99 has been described as the brand’s ‘superhero’.

Also in the range are a 1% Retinol Repair Cream, Retinol Eye Refiner, Super Glow Miracle Oil and Super Shield SPF50, all of which have been third party tested, are vegan-friendly, cruelty-free and unisex.

The products go hand in hand with the Grass Roots Facial, a five step, in-salon treatment which can be personalised to suit any skin type and is designed to give instant results.

It starts with dermaplaning, where a fine surgical blade is passed back and forth along the top layer of the skin to remove dead skin cells and allows the skin to absorb the ingredients of the products.

A special CBD-infused oil is used to boost the anti-inflammatory effect of lymphatic drainage, a therapeutic massage treatment, which uses light pressure and rhythmic strokes to increase the flow of lymph and reduce toxins in the body.

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LED light therapy then uses different wavelengths of light to target certain conditions including acne, rosacea, sensitive, pigmented and ageing skin.

“We’ve designed the facial so that anyone can benefit from it, by creating different processes within it that can be adapted for any skin condition,” explained co-founder Zoe Wilkinson from the Skin Tres salon and training centre in Oxfordshire.

“For example, if someone has active acne we wouldn’t do the dermaplaning part of the facial, but we could do more lymphatic drainage and spend more time with the LED light.

“The idea is that the skin will absorb the products better and the end result will be an instant glow, as well as reducing inflammation and redness, but also a really relaxing facial.”

At the moment the Grass Roots Facial and skincare range will only be available at salons where therapists have completed a Skin Tres CIBTAC approved course.

From October 2020 training will be provided at the SkinTres training centres in Witney in Oxfordshire and Marple in Cheshire, but the aim is to roll it out to salons across the UK.

“An important part of our message is educating people about CBD, so a big part of the process is training and teaching therapists to be knowledgeable about the products, so they can teach their clients the benefits of that and help to educate people,” said Jo.

“A lot of people are still afraid of CBD and don’t really understand it, but the more we people can educate about it, the more people will try it.

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“In five years, everybody will have probably tried something with a bit of CBD in.”

And this could be groundbreaking in how common skin conditions are managed.

Zoe added: “The biggest use for CBD is in skin conditions such as eczema, acne and psoriasis, because of its anti-inflammatory and antibacterial properties.

“Doctors often prescribe strong ointments for these conditions, so if people can treat them with something natural like CBD, before going down the medical route, that could massively change how we use skincare.”

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Spain approves first cannabis based medicine

The approval for Epidyolex was based on the results of four randomised controlled Phase III trials



Spain cannabis: A Spanish flag in the air with an old building behind it

Spain has approved the first cannabis based medicine, Epidyolex for patients with severe conditions such as epilepsy.

Epidyolex, an oral cannabis-based medicine, has been approved in Spain by the Ministry of Health after a large two-year trial. The approval for Epidyolex was based on the results of four randomised controlled Phase III trials. The clinical development of the therapy was spread over 10 different hospitals.

The trial involved over 700 participants with severe forms of epilepsy.

Until recently, there was no distinction between recreational and medicinal cannabis use in Spain which made it difficult to obtain products with higher quantities of 0.02 percent THC.

The medicine will only be available in hospital pharmacies for the treatment of seizures caused by Lennox-Gastaut Syndrome (LGS) and Dravet Syndrome (DS).

Spain and medical cannabis

Speaking at a press conference, neurologist Vicente Villanueva, head of the Refractory Epilepsy Unit of the Hospital Universtiari i Politècnic La Fe de València said the trials have found a 40 percent reduction in seizures.  “As clinicians and researchers, we are satisfied to have these new options”, 

Antonio Gil-Nagel Rein, a neurologist and director of the Epilepsy Program of the Hospital Ruber Internacional de Madrid reported: “The potential improvement of the quality of life in an area where therapeutic options are very small is good news. Access to a new drug with a novel and clinically proven mechanism of action is a reason for hope for patients and satisfaction for specialists.”

Epidyolex received approval from the European Commission in September 2019. This made it the first cannabis-based prescription medicine to receive authorisation.

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Read more: Can cannabis reduce the side effects of anti-seizure medication?

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Royal Society of Medicine and Integro Clinics announce pain and cannabis medicines event

The event takes place on October 11 from 8:30 to 17:30. It will explore the potential of cannabis medicines in the field of pain medicine in the UK



Event: The Royal Society of Medicine logo in green and red on a white background

The Royal Society of Medicine has announced a collaborative event, Pain and cannabis medicines: Everything you want to know (but were too afraid to ask) in association with Integro Medical Clinics.

The event takes place on October 11 from 8:30 to 17:30. It will explore the potential of cannabis medicines in the field of pain medicine in the UK

Since the legalisation of cannabis medicines on prescription in November 2018, patients and clinicians alike have been awaiting more data or information regarding these medicines. 

The event aims to provide those attending with a comprehensive understanding of the uses of cannabis medicines and the practicalities of using them in their own practice. It will consist of presentations on the history, regulatory environment and pharmacology of cannabis medicines including the use of different cannabis-based medical preparations in treating pain and related symptoms in a wide variety of clinical fields in the context of the current UK regulatory framework. 

Event presentations

The day will feature presentations from international leaders in cannabis medicines such as Professor Raphael Mechoulam, the chemist who discovered the endocannabinoid system and THC, Dr Anthony Ordman, Leading UK Consultant in Pain Medicine and previous President of the Pain Medicine Section of the Royal Society of Medicine and Dr Arno Hazekamp PhD, who worked as Head of Research and Education at Bedrocan, the first European company to produce EU GMP grade cannabis medicines.  

If you wish to sign up, please click here.

Event speakers
Dr Anthony Ordman, Consultant in Pain Medicine

Event: A black and white headshot of Dr Anthony Ordman Founder of the highly respected Chronic Pain Clinic at London’s Royal Free Hospital, he is one of the UK’s most experienced specialists in the treatment of pain. For his contributions to Pain Medicine, Dr Ordman was awarded a Fellowship of the Royal College of Physicians in 2005, and he is the Immediate Past President of the Pain Medicine Section of the Royal Society of Medicine. Dr Ordman is also Senior Medical Consultant and Lead Clinician at Integro Medical Clinics and has a special interest in the potential benefits of cannabis medicines in pain medicine.

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Alex Fraser, Patient Access Lead at GrowPharma

Event: A black and white headshot of guest speaker Alex FraserAlex Fraser is a leading medical cannabis patient advocate. He is a patient himself having been diagnosed with Crohn’s Disease in 2010 at 19 years old. In 2014 he founded the United Patients Alliance and has since appeared on mainstream media multiple times, including on the BBC and ITV, to highlight the urgent need for access to cannabis medicines for the many patients who may benefit from them. He has taken delegations of patients to parliament to give testimony to politicians at the highest levels and organised educational events, rallies and protests calling for law change on medical cannabis. In February 2019 Alex joined Grow Pharma, one of the leading suppliers of cannabis medicines in the UK, as their patient access lead. He utilises his extensive knowledge of medical cannabis, his understanding of patient needs and his network in the industry to ensure patient voices are heard and represented. His work includes informing top-level policymakers, educating healthcare professionals and conceiving and running projects that increase general awareness and provide practical help for patients.

Professor Raphael Mechoulam, Professor of Medicinal Chemistry at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in Israel

Event: A black and white headshot Most well-known for the total synthesis of delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and the discovery of the Endocannabinoid System. Since the inception of his research in the 60s, Professor Mechoulam has been nominated for over 25 academic awards, including the Heinrich Wieland Prize (2004), an Honorary doctorate from Complutense University (2006), the Israel Prize in Exact Sciences – chemistry (2000), the Israel Chemical Society Prize for excellence in research (2009) and EMET Prize in Exact Sciences – Chemistry (2012

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Dr Sally Ghazaleh, Consultant Pain Specialist

Event: A black and white headshot of a guest speakerDr Sally Ghazaleh, is a Pain Management Consultant at the Whittington Hospital, and the National Hospital of Neurology and Neurosurgery, London. She qualified from the University of Szeged Medical School, Hungary in 2000, and then completed her specialist training in the Anaesthesia and Intensive Care Medicine at Semmelweis University in 2007. She went on a fellowship at University College Hospital, London, to gain her higher degree in Pain Medicine

During her time at the pain management Centre at University College Hospital, she gained extensive experience in dealing with and managing patients with complex multiple pain problems. She is accomplished at a variety of interventional and non-interventional treatments for this specific patient group. Sally specializes in managing patients with lower back pain, neck pain, neuropathic pain, abdominal pain, cancer pain, complex regional pain syndrome, post-stroke pain and Fibromyalgia. She has a particular interest in bladder and abdominal pain in women, and women’s health in general.

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Celebrities including Drake call for a general pardon for those involved in cannabis offences.

There are over 150 signatures from rappers, artists, producers, law enforcement and more.



Celebrities: A judges gavel on a wooden table next to a green cannabis leaf

Over 150 celebrities including the rapper Drake and NBA athletes have signed an open letter to President Biden calling for a general pardon of non-violent cannabis offences.

NBA athlete Al Harrington, rapper Drake, world champion boxer Badou Jack, rapper and activist Killer Mike, NBA star John Wall along with Meek Mill and Julio Jones announced at a live-streamed event that they have co-written and signed a letter addressed to President Joe Biden. The letter requests a general pardon for ‘all persons subject to federal criminal or civil enforcement on the basis of a nonviolent marijuana offence.”

The idea for the letter to president Biden came from Weldon Angelos of the Weldon Project/ Mission Green and Academy for Justice Director Erik Luna. The Weldon Project aims to help fund social change and financial aid for those who are still serving prison time for cannabis-related offences. Angelo was an emerging musician before he was sent to prison for selling less than $1,000 worth of cannabis.  Despite it being his first offence,  Angelos went on to service 13 years of his term before eventually being released in 2016. He founded the project upon being released.

The letter includes signatures from 150 athletes, artists, law enforcement officials, academics, business leaders, producers, lawmakers, policy experts, reform advocates and other professionals.

It reads: “This resolve is witnessed today in both red and blue states, from coast to coast, as the American people call for an end to cannabis prohibition. Whatever one thinks of other drugs and other defendants, incarcerating cannabis offenders in federal prisons is a misuse of our nation’s resources and grossly hypocritical, given that a clear majority of Americans oppose cannabis prohibition and about half admit to using the drug during their lifetime.”

The live-streamed event discussed the letter to President Biden while placing an emphasis on a call for a general pardon. Speaking with Benzinga, Angelos said that the celebrities who had signed the letter had done so in support of a fellow artist, Ralo who is facing eight years for a cannabis offence. Despite several states switching to safe, regulated cannabis programs.

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“When Biden ran for president, he promised to take action and use the pardon power of the presidency to release those serving prison time for marijuana and pardon their felony convictions,” Angelos said. “At a time when dispensaries are as prevalent as liquor stores in some states, it is time for President Biden to now make good on that promise.”

In a press release, Ralo said: “I appreciate my friends and peers in the hip-hop community, such as Drake & Killer Mike, for supporting my clemency because it’s just not right that corporations are allowed to violate federal law and become millionaires while people like myself go to prison for years,”

He added: “This is hypocrisy. But I am hopeful that Joe Biden will honour his campaign promise and grant us clemency, without delay, so that we can return home to our families and communities.”

Angelos also highlighted that the long term effects for those incarcerated ‘go beyond the prison walls’ making it difficult for former prisoners to get jobs, access to affordable housing or educational loans. “They’re limited in so many ways that people don’t realize when they just want to begin again and contribute to society. Enough is enough. No one should be locked up in federal prison for marijuana.”

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Cannabis Health is a journalist-led news site. Any views expressed by interviewees or commentators do not reflect our own. All content on this site is intended for educational purposes, please seek professional medical advice if you are concerned about any of the issues raised.

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