Call me old school, but I've always enjoyed raw cannabis flower over concentrates. As I learned more about cannabis health as a registered nurse, I then understood why. Cannabis works best by using it in its' whole, natural form. A synergistic effect, also known as "entourage effect", requires all cannabinoids, and phytochemicals work together for the best therapeutic results. When we extract certain cannabinoids, we leave behind other medicinal plant components. Cannabinoids also don't have the same effect when they are isolated. Case in point: Have you've ever used a "THC-free" CBD oil, and felt nothing? It's because the small, naturally occurring amount of THC in hemp that helps CBD function at it's full potential is missing. Applying this same principle; using whole hemp flower is a great way to incorporate CBD into skincare. Raw hemp flower is CBD rich, and interacts with cannabinoid receptor sites located in skin. It is a potent antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory. CBD can help soothe angry, stressed out skin by inhibiting an inflammatory response through interaction with mainly CB2 receptors. Antioxidants help protect against oxidative stress from environmental factors such as pollution, and UV rays by scavenging free radicals. If you didn't already know, free radical damage is a major contributing factor in premature aging. And while CBD is great in skincare, phytochemicals make it the total package. Phytochemicals such as chlorophyll (what makes hemp green), also contain high amounts of antioxidants, vitamins, minerals, and anti-inflammatory properties. Chlorophyll also has major purifying properties, which can help clear, and prevent acne. As you can see, whole raw hemp flower is a must-have ingredient when it comes to The Bitchy Hippie skincare. Lastly, knowing that the integumentary (skin) system is the largest organ in the body; we should care about what we put on our bodies, as well as in. When considering hemp/cannabis products, also consider the source. Cannabinoids like CBD, and THC originally come from hemp/cannabis flower grown by a farmer. Not all farmers grow using ethical farming practices. A reputable farmer should be able to provide testing results from a third party lab showing potency, that the flower is contaminant free, and even terpene profile if you're really boujee (ahem why we love Ranchera Familia). For safety reasons; any cannabis/hemp used should be free from contaminants such as microbes, and pesticides. Moral of the story: be picky with your weed, and your CBD skincare.