CBD For Beginners: What Is It? Health Benefits & Product Guide

Welcome to your personal guide to CBD for beginners. Here you’ll learn what CBD is, its magical health benefits, different products to try, how and when to use them, etc. Let’s get started. First things first…

What Is CBD?

CBD is an abbreviation for “cannabidiol” which is the main cannabinoid within CBD products (because CBD is a lot easier to say and spell).

Second things second… What are cannabinoids?

Cannabinoids are a class of chemicals that are both found within the human body and within the cannabis plant. When we consume or use hemp (phytocannabinoid-infused) products, they impact and interact with our endocannabinoid systems to produce a series of different reactions and health benefits.

Let’s dispel this myth right from the get-go: CBD is NOT weed. In fact, CBD doesn’t even get you high.

What?! Yup. CBD is not to be confused with THC (tetrahydrocannabinol). Unlike THC, which is another active component of the cannabis plant, CBD is non-psychoactive with less than 0.3% of THC in its make-up. This means that you won’t be falling into a coma on your couch eating all of the snacks you can get your hands on like you might by smoking a nice Indica strain of weed. Sorry.

Is CBD Legal?

Yes! Well, “hemp-derived” CBD is legal. “Marijuana-derived” CBD is not legal.

Thanks to the passing of the 2018 Farm Bill, hemp is now federally legal, which is revolutionary for cannabis farmers and consumers across the United States.

Whereas recreational marijuana use is not legal in all 50 states (yet *fingers crossed*), medical marijuana is legal in most of them, and CBD products derived from “hemp” without any THC are 100% legal in all of them and sold in stores throughout the country. If you’re unsure if marijuana is legal where you live, check out this resource from Business Insider.

So what’s the big deal? Why are people obsessing over CBD? What are the health benefits of using it on the regular?

CBD Health Benefits

Cannabis is used as a form of plant-based medicine because of its natural and incredibly potent healing capabilities. It is used across the world for various purposes, including pain management, skincare, stress relief, and better sleep.

People with autoimmune diseases, anxiety, depression, insomnia, chronic illnesses, or all or none of the above can all benefit from incorporating the plant into their daily lifestyle from their workout routine to their bedtime ritual.

Here are just a few of the many amazing health benefits of hemp and CBD:

  • Relieves pain
  • Reduces joint and muscle inflammation
  • Great for post-workout soreness
  • Eases stress
  • Decreases anxiety and depression
  • Alleviates chronic disease symptoms
  • Helps you sleep better
  • Manages emotions
  • Improves skin
  • Promotes cell regeneration
  • Repairs damaged cells
  • Helps you take on the day like the normal functioning human being you want to be


Want proof? Here’s a little personal story about just how well CBD works to heal the body for someone with a disability…

TL;DR: CBD literally relieved my dad’s chronic pain better than any medicine has in the past 20 years.

My dad is disabled. He’s had limited use of his right hand since I was four years old due to an operation gone wrong. He typically relies on painkillers every day to cope with the pain. I tried CBD For Life’s CBD pain relief rub for the first time and fell in love with it, so I decided to pass it along to him to see if it could help in any way. He called me a few hours later to tell me what happened. 

Although his pain didn’t completely disappear, the rub managed to eliminate the constant annoying throbbing sensation in his hand so he at least didn’t have to think about it throughout the day. My dad has been using it ever since and hopes to eventually transition from using prescription drugs to various forms of cannabis products.

ALL HAIL CBD! If it can work to relieve pain for someone with a disability who has been living with chronic nerve pain for decades, it could work to relieve your pain too.

Types Of CBD Products

Based on the method of consumption or use, different types of CBD products will work faster, stronger, and longer than others. For example, ingesting CBD orally (via oil drops that sit under the tongue for 30 seconds) will typically kick in quicker than a salve that’s applied topically (and absorbed through the skin).

Here are 12 popular forms of CBD products that are currently available for sale:

  • Oils (drops/tinctures/sublingual)
  • Gummies
  • Flower
  • Salves/rubs
  • Lotions
  • Gels
  • Edibles
  • Vapes
  • Capsules
  • Bath bombs
  • Skincare
  • Makeup

Basically, you can eat it, swallow it, rub it on your skin, put it inside your body, bathe in it, or smoke it.

WARNING: Not all CBD products are created equal. Some products may be made with harmful carcinogens, toxins, or chemicals that can irritate your skin, throat, or stomach.

I’ve tried oil tinctures that burned my throat and gave me cold-like symptoms. I’ve also tried oils that gave me life and took the edge off from my anxiety. I’ve tried salves that gave me rashes instead of relief, and I’ve tried rubs that relieve pain and soreness better than any pharmaceutical ever could.

REMINDER: Be sure to do your research to find legitimate, reliable CBD brands and products! Always check to see if the products you’re interested in trying are made with good, safe ingredients and third-party tested with lab results available online and/or readily accessible.

Different Ways To Use CBD

From the moment you wake up to 30 minutes before you fall asleep, there are so many ways to incorporate CBD into your everyday life. What could you use CBD for? Well, how you use it depends on the reason behind why you’d use it in the first place.

What are some of the most common ways to use CBD?

  • After a workout to soothe aching muscles or inflamed joints
  • When you wake up to relieve tension in your neck or shoulders
  • Before you go to bed to fall asleep faster and get deeper, more refreshing rest
  • Whenever you feel anxious or depressed to lighten your mood
  • As part of your skincare or makeup routine to reduce redness, hydrate your skin, and heal damaged skin cells
  • During sex as a natural lubricant (Kush Queen makes one called Ignite!)
  • Throughout the day to reduce stress and/or pain from chronic or everyday ailments

Personally, I use CBD for most of the reasons listed above. I have Lyme disease which blessed me with super fun symptoms like chronic inflammation and pain on a daily basis. I also train Brazilian jiu-jitsu 3-4x/week so my body is practically always hurting. CBD helps me to live more like a non-broken human.

LEARN MORE: Check out this experiment I did for Betches all about how CBD helps for pain management, anxiety, and stress relief!

My Favorite CBD Products To Use Every Day

Personal CBD Product Collection

My personal CBD product collection

Yup, that’s a photo of my magical collection of CBD products. Ain’t it beautiful? (Shout out to Boxy Girl for the amazing stackable organizers.) These are just a few of the CBD products that I use every day, including why I use them:

Octavia Rose Perfect Day: I use a full tincture of this daytime CBD oil before I head out for the day to get work done at the coffee shop or whatever I’m doing without feeling anxious.

Octavia Rose Perfect Sleep: Right before bed, I’ll take a full tincture of this nighttime CBD oil with CBN which promotes better, restorative sleep. I usually sleep through the night with this stuff.

Baked Beauty Co. CALM THE HELL DOWN Anxiety Salve: After I wake up, I apply this salve to literally calm the hell down by reducing tension in my chronically stiff neck that loves to aggravate me in the morning.

Blue Ridge Hemp Co. Pain Relief Salve: This powerful 200mg CBD-infused salve relieves my aches, pains, and soreness throughout the day and after intense workouts. It’s my best friend.

CBD For Life Eye Serum & Face Cream: I was NEVER a believer in skincare products until I tried these serums. Now they’re just another part of my post-shower routine. Brush my hair, moisturize my skin, and apply these under-eye and facial serums.

CBD Is Natural, Healing, Legal, And Life-Changing

CBD is an extremely powerful and natural healer — and with all of its health benefits, it’s bound to become your new best friend who you’ll want to hang out with every day. But don’t take our advice. Try it for yourself!

REMINDER: YOU are your #1 advocate — no one can tell you what will work best for you. Everybody is unique, and every person reacts to different products in their own way. Play around to see which types of products you like, which forms are the most effective, and which ones agree with you physically, mentally, and emotionally. What works for me may not work for you, and vice versa.

No matter how you choose to experiment with CBD, please make sure to do your research and listen to your body to get the most out of your plant-based recreational or medicinal experience.

Good luck, feel good, and happy healing!

Thanks for reading. Do you use CBD? How often? Which products do you like? Have any questions? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

READ NEXT: Organic Sea Salt Chocolate Chip Pot Brownies Recipe


CBD For Beginners: What Is CBD? Health Benefits & Product Guide

About Author

Morgan Mandriota is the founder of Highly Untamed and a freelance sex and wellness writer. She regularly writes for Betches, Cosmopolitan, Tinder, Health, SHAPE, and your other favorite websites. She loves traveling, hiking, eating tacos, and training Brazilian jiu-jitsu. Follow Morgan on Instagram and Twitter @morganmandriota.