by Johanna Bloomquist December 21, 2021
By this point, you can buy CBD at your local grocery store, Delta-8 at your favorite head shop, and you know where to find all kinds of other rare cannabinoids. Have you heard of HHC, though? Read on to find out what HHC is, where it comes from, and, most importantly, if it will get you stoned!
What Is HHC?
HHC stands for Hexahydrocannabinol (don’t worry if you can’t pronounce that—we’ll call it HHC from here on out!). It’s a rare cannabinoid that has only recently started to hit the shelves of your favorite online smoke shops. It’s similar to both Delta-8 THC (D8) and Delta-9 THC (plain old THC), but it’s not technically a THC compound. This means it’s currently legal in all 50 states thanks to the 2018 Farm Bill!
Where Does HHC Come From?
Basically, HHC is extracted from CBD which is extracted from hemp. (Fun fact for your next sesh: HHC comes from the seeds and pollen of hemp plants, while most other cannabinoids come from the flowers!) HHC is extracted from CBD using the same process that gives us margarine and other hydrogenated oils. The result is a liquid that is most often sold in carts, vapes, and cartridges.
Will HHC Get Me High?
THC gets you “stoned” by bonding to the cannabinoid receptors in your brain, called CB1 and CB2.
HHC bonds to those receptor sites as well, easily attaching to both CB1 and CB2. So, yes, HHC can get you high!
How Does HHC Make you Feel?
Though HHC was first synthesized in the 1940s, it’s only just now becoming available in your favorite smoke shops. We always try to be on the cutting edge of cannabis culture here at Bay Smokes!
The molecular structures of HHC and THC are almost identical (for the science fans among us: Delta-9 THC has a double bond at the ninth carbon, and HHC has no double bonds). This means that the effects of HHC can be expected to be really similar to the effects of THC. Both HHC and THC are said to be energizing, euphoric, and pain-relieving, but HHC is often said to be a little more laid-back, a lot like D8.
HHC and Delta-8 are similar in the sense that they are both reported to produce a milder, smoother “baked” feeling than THC. This is because neither D8 nor HHC can bond with the cannabinoid receptors in your brain quite as efficiently as traditional THC can. In terms of strength and potency, HHC is thought to be somewhere between D8 and THC.
Also, HHC bonds to those cannabinoid receptors in your brain in a different way than D8 does. D8 bonds primarily with CB1, giving you more of a “body high.” HHC (and THC) bond with both CB1 and CB2, so HHC often gives users more of the “head high” and psychoactive effects that they are looking for.
That being said, there hasn’t been significant research done on HHC and no two people experience cannabis products the same way. Even if you have extensive experience with other cannabinoids or cannabis products, your tolerance for those might not carry over to your tolerance for HHC and other rare cannabinoids. We always recommend that you start off slow when trying a new product: you can always smoke (or eat, or vape, or drink, or dab…) more, but you can never take less!
Will HHC Show Up On a Drug Test?
Short answer: maybe.
Long answer: There’s anecdotal evidence that you can still pass a drug test after using HHC, unlike other popular cannabinoids. There is also some research to suggest that the body metabolizes HHC differently so that it doesn’t produce high levels of 11-hydroxy-THC (the metabolites that cause a positive drug test for regular users of THC and other cannabinoid products, including D8). However, HHC just hasn’t been researched enough to know for sure, so the answer is still just maybe. We’d recommend trying HHC with caution if this is a concern for you.
Is HHC Safe?
While there hasn’t been much research done on the compound, the limited amount available suggests that HHC is just as safe as D8 and other cannabinoids when used responsibly by adults 21 and older. There have been no reports of major negative side effects, but just like with any cannabis product, over-indulgence can lead to some unpleasant sensations like cottonmouth or paranoia.
Though the process to make HHC is pretty involved, it’s very safe to make when performed by professionals under the right conditions.
HHC is actually more stable than THC and other cannabinoids on a molecular level, so it has a longer shelf life (and won’t spoil as fast if you don’t store it right and it gets exposed to heat or strong sunlight—it’s happened to all of us!)
All of our products at Bay Smokes are rigorously tested to ensure the highest possible quality and purity for you.
Is HHC A Synthetic Drug?
It depends on what your definition of “synthetic” is. There is only a very small amount of HHC available in hemp and cannabis plants. The HHC that you can buy today in vapes and carts is derived from these plants, but it goes through an intense extraction process involving extraction and hydrogenation (the same type of process that gives us hydrogenated vegetable oils). Most commercially-available HHC has totally natural origins, but the difficulty of getting at this compound has led some people to label it as synthetic.
Here at Bay Smokes, we pride ourselves on offering our customers only the cleanest, most pure cannabis products available.
Is HHC Legal?
Yes! Right now, hemp-derived HHC is legal on a federal level since it’s not actually a THC compound. Unlike Delta-8, which has been banned in some places, HHC is legal in all 50 states and can be shipped to you no matter where you live, including Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.
However, this is not legal advice and you should consult with an attorney about your state’s local laws.
Where Can I Buy HHC?