Best CBD Cream for Athletes

CBD cream is one of the hottest natural supplements for athletes these days—and for good reason. This cannabis-based product offers relief from sore muscles, aids recovery, fights anxiety and insomnia. It can help athletes not only to recover faster, but also stay at the top of their health so they can pursue their passion to the best of their ability. 

So what can you expect from using CBD cream as an athlete? How should you use it? And what are the best product on the market today? Here is our guide to using CBD sports cream. 

Why Athletes Should Use CBD Cream

CBD cream offers a number of benefits that athletes can really benefit from. Massaged into the skin, it can relax the muscles and relieve pain. This is great for those who frequently suffer from sore muscles after a heavy workout. By relieving tension in the muscles, easing pain, and lowering levels of inflammation, CBD could make your sore muscles go away much faster.

Athletes like runners and those who practice high-risk sports can also benefit from using CBD cream when they suffer from injuries. Whether you have a torn ligament, a broken bone, or a physical wound, CBD can make the healing process a lot faster. It won’t fix your broken bones and severe injuries—but by lowering pain and inflammation, it can make the healing process a whole lot smoother.
Finally, CBD has been found to help improve sleep quality. It has anxiety-fighting properties that also help with insomnia and agitated sleep. And since all athletes know how much a bad night of sleep can affect your performance, there’s no denying CBD can be a great help. 

cbd cream for athletes

But why use CBD cream rather than just take CBD oil through the mouth? Both methods have their pros and cons. We find that CBD cream works very well for athletes because they can use it to massage the muscles that need the most relief. If you are suffering from an injury or just some very sore muscles, CBD sports cream allows you to target the area where you want to lower pain and inflammation. It also has a much faster effect than CBD oil, which is useful when you want immediate relief.

Taking CBD through the mouth tends to be less effective because our liver and other digestive organs often get rid of a lot of the CBD before it has a chance to enter our bloodstream. However, this method of taking CBD can offer slow, consistent relief on a daily basis, which can be great for athletes who want to focus on improving their sleep and lowering their stress levels.  

Best CBD Cream for Athletes

How Should Athletes Use CBD Cream?

For athletes, we recommend using CBD cream as a regular massage cream. After coming back from practice, after a shower, or just before bed, apply a generous amount of CBD muscle cream to the areas that need it most. Take the time to massage it in so that the CBD molecules go through the first layer of skin and find the receptors located directly underneath.

Because applying CBD into the skin allows it to be released over the course of several hours, we recommend leaving it on and not washing it off too soon after you’ve applied the cream. Ideally, you’d want to apply it after a shower or at least make sure to leave it on overnight. 

And of course, it’s not enough to pick up any CBD cream. To get maximum benefits out of your CBD muscle cream, you should be careful to choose one that contains high-quality CBD, a high enough concentration, and only natural, non-toxic ingredients. The second part of this guide is our top picks for CBD cream that will work great for athletes. 

Endoca Hemp Whipped

1. Endoca Whipped Body Butter

Our first pick for the best CBD cream for athletes is this light and creamy body butter by Endoca.


Formulated with natural oils and butters like shea, cocoa butter, and coconut oil, it has a smooth and rich consistency that is easy to apply to large areas of skin. We particularly recommend it for athletes who want to massage large muscles (in the legs, back, arms) rather than for those who need targeted relief in one area (say, the ankle).

It contains only organic, food-grade ingredients that also happen to have great moisturizing properties. Shea butter, cocoa butter, and vitamin E come together to make a nurturing cream that can leave your skin softer as an added benefit.

This body cream comes in two different concentrations, depending on your needs. The 300-mg version is more affordable. This makes it a good option if you’re not sure how much CBD you need, or just want to try out the effects of CBD cream before committing to a larger purchase.

The 1,500-mg version offers the best value for your money. If you know that CBD really helps you with athletic performance, then it’s one of the best products you can get in terms of the price of CBD per milligram. 

Either way, these Endoca products offer exceptional value for money when you consider the quality of the CBD they use, which you can check for yourself in the many documents and certificates the brand provides on their website. 


  • Available in two different potencies
  • Leaves your skin soft and hydrated
  • Creamy consistency, easy to apply


  • The vanilla scent isn’t for everyone
  • The high-potency option is more expensive than average
Best CBD Cream for Sunburn

2. CBDfx Muscle Balm

If you’re looking for a dedicated product that soothes sore muscles, this 750mg CBD muscle balm by CBDfx is a great option.


Thick and creamy, this balm is formulated with natural oils like jojoba, sunflower, and coconut for a rich texture. Warmed up in your hands for a few seconds, it becomes easy to massage into your sore muscles.

One of the things we like the most about this product is how it takes advantage of other natural ingredients like peppermint and wintergreen. All of these essential oils are used to relieve muscle pain in natural medicine. They also have an invigorating scent that is pleasant but not too sweet. The CBD in this product is selected based on some of the highest standards. It is organic, GMO-free, third-party tested, and even GMP-certified which means that it’s made following very strict manufacturing standards. As an athlete, it’s a product that guarantees the purity you need.

With 750mg of CBD in a 2oz jar, this is a high-potency product that is sure to give you exactly the relief you need. You can grab a jar for just $39.99, which we think gives you some of the best value you can find anywhere. 


  • High potency
  • Very good price per milligam of CBD
  • Broad-spectrum hemp extract
  • Natural ingredients


  • Peppermint essential oil could create a tingling feeling
  • Bulky jar which isn’t very portable
Joy Skin & Body Premium CB Salve

3. Joy Organics Premium CBD Salve 500mg

This 500mg CBD salve by Joy Organics is made with sore muscles in mind.

It’s a creamy balm with one of the simplest ingredient lists we’ve seen so far. Inside its elegant glass tub, you’ll find:

Organic MCT Oil, Organic Beeswax, Phytocannabinoid-Rich Hemp Extract, Organic Lavender Essential Oil and Organic Eucalyptus Essential Oil.

If you’re the kind of person who likes to know exactly what they’re putting on their skin, it’s a great product. It doesn’t mess around with several types of oils and plant extracts. What you get is simply good amounts of CBD, mixed in with a richly hydrating oil as well as lavender and eucalyptus essential oils which are known to help with pain relief. 

The scent of this product is pleasant without being too sweet, and its creamy enough to apply to large areas of skin without too much difficulty.

With 500mg of CBD in a 1oz jar (a 2oz jar that contains 1000mg of CBD is also available), this is quite a highly-dosed product. This makes it particularly suitable for those with very sore muscles, or for athletes who are recovering from an injury. 

The CBD in this product is organic, U.S-grown and third-party tested. Overall, it’s a great quality product that offers good value for money in a simple, no-fuss formulation. 


  • Simple and natural list of ingredients
  • Organic, THC-free CBD extract
  • Comes in a dark glass container


  • Not for you if you’re not a fan of eucalyptus
  • A little harder to spread because of thick texture
CBD Medic Active Sport Pain Relief Ointment

4. Charlotte’s Web Active Sport Pain Relief Ointment

This sports-specific cream by Charlotte’s Web is great for sore muscles and more serious injuries.


This Charlotte’s Web pain relief ointment was made especially with athletes in mind. It contains menthol and camphor, two ingredients which are known to help with sore muscles. As well as being anti-inflammatory, these extracts relieve pain and create a slightly cooling, slightly numbing sensation that feels great on tired muscles. 

Made with 200mg of broad-spectrum CBD extract in a 40g tube, it’s a high-potency product that can help not just with sore muscles, but also with injuries and more severe sources of pain. And since camphor and menthol are also pain-relieving, it’s a product that’s useful to keep on hand for when you need a fast way to get rid of pain: the menthol and camphor can numb your skin while you’re waiting for the CBD extract to kick in.

In terms of texture, it’s a smooth, creamy ointment that’s easy to apply. Jojoba seed oil gives it a silky texture, and lightly hydrating properties. It’s not our product of choice if you really need to moisturize your skin, but it’s one of our best picks for athletes dealing with pain and inflammation.


  • Broad-spectrum CBD extract
  • Great potency for everyday use
  • Menthol gives it a cooling effect


  • Relatively low CBD potency
  • High price per milligram of CBD

5. Elixinol CBD Sports Gel 1000mg

This sports gel is a sports-specific product that contains high amounts of high-quality CBD.


One of the best CBD products for athletes on the market today is this high potency sports gel by Elixinol. Not only does it contain a good amount of CBD (1000mg in 100ml), it’s also enriched with pain-fighting arnica and capsaicin. 

The texture of this gel is thin, easy to apply, and it absorbs remarkably quickly. So if you’re looking for a product that you can massage into larger areas of skin without difficulty, the texture of this one makes it ideal. Since it is a water-based product, it will also tend to absorb more easily into the skin, and not to leave a greasy residue.

One of the things we like the most about this gel is the sheer number of essential oils it contains: basil, eucalyptus, rosemary, Matricaria flower, grapefruit, cinnamon, the list goes on. Elixinol is a company that really understands the way that the terpenes in essential oils complement cannabinoids like CBD. In this product, they’ve given us a formulation that gives you the best of both the world of cannabinoids and that of aromatherapy.

Organic, third-party tested, CO2 extracted, this is a product that conforms to our quality criteria on every account. So if you’re looking for a sports-specific, gel-form product with good amounts of CBD and interesting botanicals, we think you’ll love that one. 


  • Portable format
  • Fast to absorb into the skin
  • Affordable and good value for money


  • Not particularly hydrating
  • Elixinol have longer than average shipping times
Endoca Hemp Salve

6. Endoca Hemp Salve 750 mg​

Our second choice for a CBD muscle cream for athletes is this rich, concentrated hemp salve from the highly reputed brand Endoca.


Compared to Endoca’s body butter, it has a denser consistency and is much more highly concentrated. This makes it a great option for those who need targeted relief in smaller areas, or want to use it as a way to speed up healing after an injury. Its thick consistency also means that it takes longer for our body to absorb. As a result, you can expect to get steady relief from it for the course of several hours, which could be great if you experience prolonged pain or discomfort. 

In terms of ingredients, it’s formulated with a mix of natural oils like coconut and hemp seed, mixed with the natural fragrance of vanilla and lemon peel essential oil. All of its ingredients are guaranteed organic, cruelty free and food safe, and it’s also completely free from artificial preservatives, colors and fragrance. 

For athletes who are health-conscious and take care of what they put in their bodies, Endoca products offer great quality with multiple certificates of analysis and other documents that show the purity of their products: no pesticides, no heavy metals, no other toxic particles. 

At $64 for a 30-ml tub, this salve is on the pricier end when it comes to skincare products, but is well within the normal range when it comes to CBD topical creams. In fact, as you’re getting 750 mg of CBD in the tub, the price per milligram of CBD is much lower than that of most CBD products on the market. 


  • High potency
  • Nice smell of lemon and vanilla
  • Fast shipping
  • Absorbs fast and without leaving a residue


  • Dense texture which can be hard to spread
  • Not a very portable product (can’t slip it in your gym bag)

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