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Product Review: Xternal Topical Balm

January 26, 2017

My line of work involves attending a lot of trade shows and conferences, and attending two back-to-back weeks of events recently meant a lot of time spent standing and walking.

Let me educate you on a simple formula:

Heels + standing + hard concrete floors with the barest hint of carpet on top of them = unbelievably painful feet

My aching feet needed a little extra help for trade show month. I was on them for 12-14 hours per day for several days, had a brief two-day respite, and then went back to standing for another four days. Thankfully, a little one-ounce jar of infused balm called Xternal Topical Balm (plus several hot baths) saved me a lot of pain and frustration.

Xternal Topical Balm at a Glance

Manufacturer: Making You Better Brands

Retail Price: $7 for 1 oz. container

Ingredients: Ricinus communis seed oil, cannabis, hydrogenated castor oil, beeswax, and copernicia cerifera wax

Cannabinoid Content: Unclear. The website notes that a “proprietary blend of cannabinoids,” specifically CBDA and THCA, are used in their formulations, but there’s no indication of how many milligrams the balm contains.

Initial Impressions

Pros: It works quickly. Within five to eight minutes of application, I could feel the discomfort decrease dramatically. If you have a willing volunteer, it can be a great excuse to ask for a massage for all of those tough to reach places (like your shoulders and back). I also love that the product is petroleum-free.

I’ve used Xternal Topical Balm at the base of my neck and on my temples for headaches, on my wrists for my carpal tunnel, and even on my stomach when I’m feeling crampy. It works to counteract both inflammation and pain, which makes it ideal for sprains and strains as well as sore joints and muscles. I even gave some to a friend who had surgery on his pinky finger, and he said it helped more than the painkillers that he was prescribed.

Cons: I feel frustrated when I can’t immediately tell how many milligrams of cannabinoids are in an infused product. I want to get an idea of potency so I can dose accordingly. That said, a little goes a long way with this product, and I’ve been using the same one-ounce tub of balm for the last six months.

Keep in mind that the balm’s consistency feels a little tacky (not quite greasy) after applied to skin, I suspect due to the beeswax and castor oil, so make sure you plan accordingly.

My other minor gripe is that I always prefer to see lab testing information on product websites, and I couldn’t find lab results when I searched the site.

Our Verdict

Overall, I definitely think it’s worth having Xternal Topical Balm in your medicine cabinet. I also recommend picking up a smaller-sized tub (like the one-ounce option) for travel. I can assure you that when I’m walking the red carpet at an awards show or strolling around a conference space all day, I have a tub of this stashed in my purse so I can apply it as soon as I’m able to take off my shoes.

Ashley Manta's Bio Image
Ashley Manta

Ashley is a writer, feminist, and sexuality educator. She is a contributing writer for Leafly.

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