Between tinctures, edibles, vapes, oils, and other methods of delivery, it can be incredibly difficult for newcomers to cannabidiol (CBD) products to decide how to take and incorporate CBD into their day-to-day life. CBD is a substance derived from the cannabis plant that provides a wide range of positive effects on the mind and body, such as calming, pain relief, and insomnia relief. Unlike cannabis, CBD does not provide any hallucinogenic effects, which are instead largely a result of another substance found in cannabis, known as THC. CBD’s effects make it ideal for individuals with anxiety or chronic pain, and can help make both work and rest much easier for many people.
CBD patches are a relatively new method for taking CBD. However, rather than being just another addition to the already confusing range of options for taking CBD, transdermal patches offer real and significant advantages to other methods of CBD ingestion. Currently, transdermal CBD patches usually come in one of three forms: pressure-sensitive adhesive patches, also known as matrix patches, reservoir patches, and hydrogel patches. Here is everything you need to know about each type so that you can decide which one is right for you.
Pressure Sensitive Adhesive Patches
Pressure-sensitive adhesive (PSA) patches, or matrix patches, are a type of transdermal CBD patch that usually consists of five layers. There is a peel-off layer that protects the patch until it's ready to be used, a CBD-infused layer, a separating layer to protect the CBD layer from the adhesive, an adhesive layer, and a protective backing. The adhesive secures the CBD-infused layer to the skin, and the CBD moves through the skin and into the bloodstream, thereby delivering the CBD to your body.
PSA patches are effective, but they offer little room for customization in terms of how long the CBD takes to enter the body or how long the patch will last. PSA patches also tend to deliver the largest quantity of CBD in the beginning, tapering off towards the end. One of the oldest technologies for drug delivery through transdermal patches, PSA patches do their job but lag behind compared to more modern innovations.
Another common form of CBD transdermal patches, reservoir patches are similar to PSA patches but differ in a number of key wars. Reservoir patches contain a permeable release membrane in front of the CBD reservoir, allowing manufacturers to fine-tune the rate of release for reservoir patches, ensuring a steady delivery rate, instead of the front-heavy delivery of PSA patches. This controlled pace allows the CBD in reservoir patches to be experienced more effectively, since the patch lasts longer, providing a more stable effect. Reservoir patches offer significant advantages over PSA patches, but can be more expensive.
Finally, hydrogel patches are the most recent addition to the CBD transdermal patch lineup, and offer several advantages to their older counterparts. Hydrogel patches work by trapping CBD-infused water in a network of hydrophilic polymers. Once the patch is applied, the patch releases the CBD through water molecules which are absorbed by the skin.
Hydrogel transdermal patches are made using medical-grade ISO 10933 compliant hydrogels, to ensure the patches are skin-safe and hypoallergenic. A 25% water to gel ratio helps to ensure efficient skin absorption directly into the bloodstream, which can be extended over long periods of time. There is no doubt that hydrogels offer the best advantages for all-day comfort and CBD absorption.