For this review, we are revisiting DrBurns’ ReLeaf™ to assess another product: their CBD Muscle & Joint Ointment. This is our third and final product review for this manufacturer: our two previous reviews examined DrBurns’ ReLeaf™ CBD Pure PAIN (which came in with a solid and impressive 9.9 overall ranking!) and DrBurns’ ReLeaf™ CBD Lozenge (which earned an overall rating of 8.09), so evaluating their CBD Muscle & Joint Ointment seemed just the right product to round out our reviews for this company.
How We Rank Products
How do we fairly compare very different products, such as edibles, tinctures, and lotions? Obviously, they are all used differently and deliver varying effects, but what we believe matters most to the general consumer is quality, effectiveness, and transparency. Working on those three aspects, we came up with four categories to evaluate which will reveal to us (and our readers) how good, potent, and clean are the products we consider. The four characteristics we consider are:
- Lab Quality – we send the product to an outside professional lab to confirm the claimed CBD content (as listed on the product’s packaging)
- Effects – our experienced CBD testers share how the product actually works for them
- Taste – these intrepid testers have sampled some unusual (and sometimes challenging) flavors, after which they pass judgment on the taste appeal
- Packaging – we believe packaging should mirror the quality and care put into the actual product itself
Of these four categories, only Lab Quality relies upon objective data, whereas the other three categories are subjective opinions of our experienced testers. Because of this fact, Lab Quality is weighted by five (out of a total weight of eight) to emphasize its importance and value; this means a poor lab result will penalize the product much more than would inferior packaging, taste, or even effects (as experienced by our testers),
Visit our detailed explanation of scoring for more details on our scoring algorithm.
Now onto our product review for DrBurns’ ReLeaf™ CBD Muscle & Joint Ointment.
First off, as reported in our two previous reviews of this company’s products, there really is a Dr. Burns, a licensed naturopath who was also the first in the state of Arizona to obtain her American Academy of Cannabinoid Medicine (AACM) physician certification (in 2012). Her enthusiastic dedication and commitment to cannabinoid medicine has kept her at the forefront of this growing and important area of wellness and health.
On top of being the medical director of Southwest Medical Marijuana Physicians Group, an organization offering guidance and advice to individuals interested in pursuing therapies using cannabinoids, she remains the CEO of DrBurns’ ReLeaf™ (which she also founded). The product line for the company focuses on wellness therapies, with some products geared for specific conditions. In all, the products break down into the following sections:
- Lozenges – this was one of the products we reviewed, which you can read about here
- Ointments – the product we are reviewing this time
- Soaking Salts – great for those who love soaking away their cares, worries, and aches
- Specialty – you can also purchase pure CBD isolate or a tincture for pets
- Tinctures – another product we reviewed, which you can read about here
As we mentioned in our previous reviews, there is everything to like about DrBurns’ ReLeaf™ website; it is attractive, easily navigated, and offers an excellent selection of CBD products, including their unique soaking salts which we haven’t encountered elsewhere.
CBD Muscle & Joint Ointment (400mg)
The page for their CBD Muscle & Joint Ointment is straightforward, as there is just one set of options (fragrance – either unscented, lavender, or vanilla), one jar size (two ounces), and one strength (400mg). Consequently, we immediately went to the ingredient list for their ointment, finding the following:
- CBD – the magic compound that delivers the relief
- Proprietary Base
- Distilled Water – good clean H2O
- Coconut Oil – the superior carrier oil for delivering CBD to the cannabinoid system effectively
- Stearic Acid – a major component of cocoa and shea butter, this is a white solid with a mild fragrance
- Emulsifying Wax – a white waxy solid, this helps bind oil and water together
- Optiphen Plus – a preservative especially useful in liquid concoctions
- Proprietary Botanical Formula
- Arnica montana – famous for both anti-inflammatory properties and reducing pain and swelling
- Salix alba (aka White Willow) – a natural anti-inflammatory plant especially helpful for those with arthritis
- Essential Oils
- Lavender – aids in calming and creating a relaxing state
- Vanilla – settles a chattering mind and calms a nervous spirit
The only directions required are to apply it topically to an infected area, but avoid open skin. For your reference, in our test we will be evaluating the unscented version of the CBD Muscle and Joint Ointment.
The CBD Informative Testing and Rating
Now that the company has had its chance to present itself, it’s time for our team to roll up their collective sleeves and get to work. For those of you familiar with our testing process, the first step is always to send out the product for lab testing and reportings. For this, we always stay with our tried-and-true professional testing facility, Level One Labs in Arizona, and await their results.
Third Party Test Results
Our formula for earning a perfect 10 in Lab Results is simple and straightforward: make sure the CBD content in your product, as reported by our third-party lab, stays within a 10% range of the amount which is printed on the product packaging. In this case, their CBD Muscle and Joint Ointment shows “400mg CBD” on their jar label, so our report needs to return results between 360gm or 440mg to retain their default (and very valuable) 10-point score.
To say we were really surprised at the lab report is an understatement: flabbergasted is more like it (plus it’s a fun word to say!), with the lab results showing a total CBD content of 525.62mg – a variance of 31.41% (and the biggest discrepancy we ever encountered)! Unfortunately, the farther away from the target number, the heftier the penalty. In this instance, the final score for Lab Quality came in at 7.86, which will incur a heavy cost when calculating the final, overall score (remember, Lab Quality is allotted 5 points in the 8-point weighted average system).
CBD Informative Assessment
After seeing this report, our testers braced themselves. Sure, it erred on the plus side, but we are looking at the overall effect and consider all ingredients to be valuable, particularly when combined in the proper proportions. Before we delve further into the product itself, let’s review the company one more time.
The Manufacturer – DrBurns’ ReLeaf™
In its previous two product reviews, DrBurns’ ReLeaf™ has shown excellent consistency in the packaging score, earning a solid 9.5 for both previous products. Our take this time around was even better: we found the white packaging to be very clean, reflecting very well the creamy white ointment inside. We also noticed that for this product the logo popped out more noticeably than the other two products we tested. We still feel that “wow factor” is not all there, bringing the final score this time to 9.75 out of 10.
The Product – CBD Muscle & Joint Ointment (400mg)
We don’t rate taste when testing ointments or other topical treatments, so the taste score is split between packaging and effects. Consequently, there is nothing to report in the taste category.
Our testers agreed that effects were both noticeable and effective when applied to sore or aching muscles. Because we used the unscented version of the ointment and there aren’t any ingredients designed to create a cooling effect, we wondered if we were psychologically experiencing “a placebo effect” since the fragrances and sensations we usually associate with ointments were missing. However, after regular use for a couple of weeks, our testers agreed that relief was both noticeable and fast after applications; they also noted that effects did not last as long as they wished, but considering the very reasonable price point, this was not a major drawback or negative. For effects, the final score came in at a quite respectable 9.0 out of 10.
The CBD Informative Overall Rating for DrBurns’ ReLeaf™ CBD Muscle & Joint Ointment (400mg) – 8.43
Due to the extreme variance in CBD content as reported by our lab, DrBurns’ ReLeaf™ CBD Muscle & Joint Ointment faced an uphill climb for the remainder of its review. Considering that low starting score of 7.86 in Lab Quality, this topical actually worked its way back up the ladder in the other two factors (taste was not scored). We still heartily endorse this company, but suggest our readers start first with the outstanding DrBurns’ ReLeaf™ CBD Pure PAIN, currently ranked second on our CBD Product Rankings with an overall score of 9.9!