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Why Do People Use CBD Rubs?

CBD body rubs are like conventional body lotions and creams that you use in everyday life. Its specialty is that it’s simply infused with therapeutic CBD compounds, which are known for many health benefits. 

People use CBD rub for various reasons, primarily for its potential benefits in minimizing localized discomforts such as body aches, and muscle soreness. Plus, CBD body rubs (CBD) also have remarkable anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties


Besides, if you are not suffering from body pain, it’s okay. The benefits of body rubs are not limited to alleviating inflammation or exercise-induced pain only. It also contains great moisturizing properties with the aroma of diverse extracts. This can help with dry or cracked skin as well. 


Furthermore, when CBD is topically applied in the form of a rub or balm, it’ll provide you with a sense of relaxation, and calmness. That's why you could feel a little drowsy since a calm mind falls asleep sooner. However, it’s worth mentioning that CBD body rubs don't make you sleepy directly. 


Can CBD Rub Make You Fail a Drug Test?


It's simple: the answer is no. You won't fail a drug test if you use CBD rubs. It is very unlikely that CBD rubs or any other topical CBD products will show up on a drug test. Still, there are ifs and buts. 


First of all, you should know that there are different types of drug tests. The most common types of drug tests are urine and blood tests. On the other hand, hair tests and skin tests are less common forms of drug testing. 


Any of these drug tests don’t look for CBD (Cannabidiol). Because CBD is federally legal in the USA. Plus, it’s not considered a mind-altering substance like THC. So, instead, drug tests look for THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), a psychoactive compound that causes “high” feelings and is considered a Schedule I drug (drugs with no currently accepted medical use and a high potential for abuse) by the DEA (United States Drug Enforcement Administration). 


That’s why taking 100 percent pure CBD in any form whether it’s CBD edible, or topical won’t make you fail a drug test


But here is the catch! 


CBD products can contain THC! In fact, most full-spectrum CBD products contain THC to some extent. It may make you wonder again: does a full-spectrum CBD body show up in a drug test? 


Full-spectrum edible CBD products such as CBD gummies, capsules, oils, or syrups may show up in a drug test only if they haven’t followed legal guidelines or contain THC greater than 0.3 percent


However, unlike edibles, topical products like body rubs don’t get into the bloodstream. That is why full-spectrum CBD rubs are unlikely to appear on a drug test as well. 


Why CBD Body Rubs Won’t Make You Fail a Drug Test? 


The drug test that you are most likely to encounter before getting a job offer letter is a urine test. To pass a urine test, THC in your body must be below 50 nanograms per milliliter (ng/ml) [Via National Institutes of Health]. 


To ingest this amount of THC in the body, you will have to take at least 2000mg of CBD products containing 0.3 percent THC. This amount is much higher than the average dose of CBD. Even in research and clinical trials, people are usually only administered 100 to 800mg of CBD per day [Via CNET]. 


You’re still not safe if you consume full-spectrum edibles or take CBD under the tongue method. 


However, in the case of CBD topicals like body rubs, it doesn’t even enter your system. Instead, it interacts with the cannabinoid receptors found in the skin and provides desired relief from discomfort. This makes it the safest option to use without worrying about drug tests. 


So why CBD body rubs won’t make you fail a drug test? What are the factors that contribute to its safety? Let’s discuss. 


Here are the reasons: 

  • Application Method 
  • Localized Effects 
  • Minimal THC Absorption 
  • Scientific Research 

Application Method


CBD topicals such as lotions, creams, rubs, or balms are formulated to be applied to the skin. Unlike oral CBD products, which are absorbed into the bloodstream through digestion or sublingual absorption, topicals work locally in the area where they are applied. 


In essence, CBD rub does not enter the bloodstream and simply acts on the surface or at different levels of depth on your skin. To fail a drug test, it must enter the bloodstream and circulate throughout the body. 


Localized Effects 


As we’ve said earlier when you apply a CBD rub to your skin, it simply interacts with cannabinoid receptors in the skin’s endocannabinoid system. Through this interaction, it produces localized effects such as pain relief, reduced inflammation, or improvement in skin conditions like dry skin, or acne. In this way, CBD only stays in the skin and surrounding tissues and doesn’t enter the bloodstream to circulate throughout the body. 

Minimal THC Absorption


Although some CBD products may contain trace amounts of THC, typically from full-spectrum CBD extracts, the concentration is very low (less than 0.3%). Even if THC is present in the body rubs you’re using, the amount absorbed through the skin into the bloodstream is insignificant. The levels are unlikely to be high enough to trigger a positive result on a drug test, which typically has a threshold (50ng/ml) for THC detection. 


Research Support


Apart from the above-mentioned reasons, there are actual scientific studies that eliminate all confusion. According to a 2017 study published in PubMed, “Topical application of THC containing products is not able to cause positive cannabinoid finding in blood or urine”. 


Besides, scientific studies support the idea that topical CBD products do not significantly penetrate the skin barrier to reach systemic circulation. Research has shown that the absorption of cannabinoids through the skin is limited. Most of the applied remains in the upper layers of the skin. 


Therefore, the likelihood of topical CBD causing a positive result on a drug test designed to detect substances in the bloodstream is very low. 


Ways to Minimize the Potential Risks of Failing Drug Tests


Although CBD body rubs will not cause positive drug test results, you should be cautious before using them. First and foremost, CBD products are not strictly regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), and there are many unregulated and mislabeled products on the market. Using these products may contribute to unpleasant side effects or potentially lead to a positive drug test result. 


So, here is some of our advice to minimize the potential risk of failing a drug test: 

  • To be on the safest side, look for CBD rub labeled as isolate or broad-spectrum, which contain no THC or only trace amounts. 
  • Always purchase CBD rubs or other topical products from reputable and trusted sources
  • Look for companies/brands/manufacturers that provide third-party lab testing results to verify the purity and potency of their products. 
  • Read product labels to find out the CBD content and other components (Cannabinoids, Terpenes, Flavonoids), and make sure the product has no or minimal THC, especially if you're drug tested. 
  • If you’re subject to regular drug testing, be extra cautious with your CBD product selection and usage. 
  • You can test yourself at home as well using drug testing kits to monitor THC levels in your system
  • Though THC is not likely to enter the bloodstream, it’s better to stay hydrated and eat healthy
  • Consult healthcare professionals regarding CBD usage and drug testing to get proper guidance. 
  • Lastly, be honest about CBD usage with your employer and healthcare professionals. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)


Here are some relevant questions and answers related to “Does CBD rub show up in a drug test?”



Does CBD Rub Stay in Your System?


Ans: Firstly, topical CBD body rub doesn’t stay in your system in the same way that ingested CBD does. It just interacts with the cannabinoid receptors in the skin without entering the bloodstream. Still, some of the CBD may be absorbed through the skin, it remains in the upper layers of the skin. In this way, CBD may stay in the system for about 2 to 5 days. It’s noteworthy that orally consumed CBD may stay in the system (bloodstream/Urine) for up to 30 days


Can Topical CBD Products Cause a Positive Result on a Drug Test?


Ans: If we put it plainly, topical CBD products typically do not cause a positive result on a drug test because the CBD (In fact THC) does not enter the bloodstream in substantial amounts. However, you should bear in mind that some full-spectrum topicals may contain trace amounts of THC, which could potentially trigger a false-positive result, although the chances are too low. 


Are There Any Side Effects Associated with CBD Rub Use?


Ans: The side effects of CBD cream, rubs, or balm don’t occur too often. However, some individuals may experience skin irritation, rash, skin dryness or peeling, skin flaming, rash, and redness. If you experience any unpleasant side effects, consult a healthcare professional. You can do a patch test new CBD rub product and discontinue use if any adverse reactions occur. 


The Bottom Line


CBD rub doesn’t show up in a drug test. In fact, all CBD-infused topical products including lotions, creams, or rubs stay on the skin and interact with the endocannabinoid receptors. So they don’t penetrate your bloodstream. That’s why if you can use CBD topical body rub that’s free from contamination and mislabeling, you will definitely keep yourself negative in your forthcoming drug test. 




  • Mlost, J., Bryk, M., & Starowicz, K. (2020). Cannabidiol for pain treatment: Focus on pharmacology and mechanism of action. International Journal of Molecular Sciences, 21(22), 8870.
  • Heß, C., Krämer, M., & Madea, B. (2017). Topical application of THC containing products is not able to cause positive cannabinoid finding in blood or urine. Forensic Science International, 272, 68–71.  
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Disclaimer: These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. This product is not for use by or sale to persons under the age of 21. All products listed on this site are Non-THC, or THC is less than 0.3%. This product should be used only as directed on the label. It should not be used if you are pregnant or nursing. This website is not offering medical advice. Consult with a physician before use if you have a serious medical condition or use prescription medications. A Doctor’s advice should be sought before using this and any supplemental dietary product. By using this site, you agree to follow the Privacy Policy and all Terms & Conditions printed on this site.

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