Due to fear of missing out, a myriad of companies have jumped on the rising trend of Delta 8 cartridges. Delta 8 carts have become increasingly popular thanks to their conveniency and rapid absorption of the compounds they contain.
However, the highly unregulated market and rise in popularity have allowed many vendors to get away with creating unsafe products in order to maximize profits. Due diligence and careful inspection are crucial.
In this post, I listed all the factors which I personally look for and avoid when purchasing Delta 8 carts. The goal is to save you time, money, and more importantly, your health.
Additionally, I’ve gone ahead and searched for the 3 safest brands which meet these standards, as well as how to safely use a Delta 8 cartridge. Everything you need to know can be found in this guide.
Delta 8 Carts Quick Reference Guide
The table below ranks various ingredients found in vape oils and delta 8 cartridges according to their potential for producing long-term side effects.
Unsafe means you should avoid at all cost.
Moderate is defined as likely to produce side effects in the future.
Safest does not mean it produces zero side effects. It’s simply the safest (very little to no toxicity) and most ideal route to take should you decide to invest in a delta 8 cartridge, or any vape product.
Additional info can be found in the following subheadings.
|FDA Approved Sweeteners||✓|
|Vitamin E Acetate||✓|
Read More: Top 5 Delta 8 Gummies For Anxiety
Risks of Buying Cheap Delta 8 Carts
Low quality delta 8 cartridges tend to carry a host of toxins and chemicals known to be detrimental for your health. There are three specific origins for these harmful agents.
- Materials used to manufacture the cartridge
- Ingredients found in the delta 8 vape oil
- The byproducts of heating up vape oil while taking a hit
More details on the origins later, but for now, here are a list of side effects derived from using poor quality delta 8 carts.
- permanent coughing
- shortness of breath
- gastrointestinal distress
On the upside, side effects can be easily avoided. You just have to know what to look for, which leads us into the next section.
What Makes a Delta 8 Cartridge Safe?
There are three things you should keep in mind when contemplating the legitimacy of a Delta 8 cartridge: The brand, what should be in the cartridge, and what should not.
Let’s begin with the brand.
Look for reviews on each specific product. Do they provide legitimate reviews from verified customers, and how many? Reviews from third party companies, such as Trusted Pilot, are a great indicator of honest reviews.
3rd Party Lab Tests AKA Certificate of Analysis (COA)
Look for lab results performed by a certified and independent company, usually provided on each product page or footer section of the vendor’s website.
The lab tests should state the list of cannabinoids, terpenes, and wether the product contains any harmful contaminants, such as heavy metals and pesticides.
Last but not least, check the lab tests to ensure the delta 8 cartridge contains no more than .3% THC (delta 9 THC AKA Mary Jane). Products which contain more than .3% THC are illegal and can cause negative side effects.
Source of Delta 8
Although most vendors are unlikely to disclose the name of their hemp supplier, it’s still worth a try. Delta 8 is derived from hemp, which is known to absorb toxins and heavy metals from the land in which it is grown.
If the vendor doesn’t provide lab tests, learning who the supplier is can provide useful information regarding the safety of their products, as suppliers in other countries are usually not required to meet the same regulations we have here in the US.
Check the About page on the vendor’s website or send them an email asking for supplier’s name.
Identifying Safe Ingredients in Delta 8 Carts
If you’re looking for the safest Detla 8 cartridge, lookout for the following factors:
- Vape Carrier Oils: Carrier oils are responsible for thinning the liquid inside your delta 8 cartridge. The three most widely used carrier oils (also known as “thinning” or “cutting” agents) include MCT, PG, and VG (more on PG & VG later). However, the safest is Medium-chain Triglyceride (MCT), a type of fat made from palm or coconut oil, which boasts several health benefits, including the production of “brain food/energy” in the form of ketones.
- Terpenes: Terpenes are highly aromatic oils produced by various plants, including hemp. They produce a wide array of health benefits in an effect called the Entourage Effect, and are highly recommended when purchasing delta 8 cartridges.
- FDA Approved Sweeteners/Additives: Not all sweeteners are created equal. Only saccharin, aspartame, acesulfame, potassium (Ace-K), sucralose, neotame, and advantame are FDA approved. If it’s not FDA approved, refrain from using the cartridge.
- High Quality Cartridge Material: Shop for delta 8 cartridges that are made of ceramic, glass, quartz or heat resistant material. Those made with plastic tend to absorb the compounds found in hemp, such as terpenes. The safest materials includes a combination of quartz, glass, and ceramic
In a nutshell, look for:
- MCT carrier oil
- FDA approved sweeteners and additives
- Quartz, glass, or ceramic
Read More: Top 5 Delta 8 For Energy
Identifying Unsafe Ingredients in Delta 8 Carts
Now that you know which factors you’d like to see in your delta 8 cartridge, let’s go over the ingredients you should avoid.
Low Quality Cartridge Materials
Avoid any cartridges manufactured with fibers, plastics, silica gel, or paint in the vapor path at all cost. These harmful materials contaminate delta 8 juice with heavy metals such as chromium and nickel.
If possible, ask for lab results that have tested for the “big four” heavy metals, including mercury, lead, cadmium, and arsenic, found in the oil.
A popular stimulant found in cigarettes, nicotine is known to improve memory and concentration while also reducing stress.
However, it’s very addicting and comes with a long list of negative side effects including decreased appetite, diarrhea, gastrointestinal distress, heightened mood, and nausea to name a few.
Although synthetic cannabinoids produce more potent effects, they are illegal due to serious side effects, such as cardiac arrest and sometimes death.
Propylene Glycol (PG or PPG)
Like MCT, PG is a thinning agent. However, PG provides a stronger hit (that can sometimes dry out your throat) and enhances flavors, which is why it’s commonly manufactured with cartridges that contain artificial flavors or nicotine.
PG is FDA approved as a food additive and preservative, but when heated, such as in vaping, it’s known to produce significantly high levels of two carcinogens, acetaldehyde and formaldehyde.
Vegetable Glycerin (VEG)
Also a thinning agent, VG is not as harmful as PG nor does it produce the same level of damaging chemicals. However, it does contain some minor downfalls.
VG is a sugar alcohol which cannot be properly absorbed by our bodies. Those who vape increased levels of VG can suffer from diarrhea or gas.
Polyethylene Glycol (PEG 400)
PEG 400 is similar to PG and is sometimes, but more rarely, used in vape juice. Unfortunately, there is very little research regarding this thinning agent, which is why it’s best to stay away.
Also known as VOC or Volatile Organic Compound in vaping products, Benzoic Acid is a safe preservative normally found in food. Many vape oils include Benzoic Acid because it facilitates the inhalation of nicotine, even though it’s not intended to be inhaled.
If you’ve experienced coughing, wheezing, headaches, dizziness, or shortness of breath after a vape sesh, Benzoic Acid may be the culprit.
Commonly found in flavored vape products, Diacetyl is a food additive responsible for fruity flavors, and much like Benzoic Acid, it can produce negative side effects when inhaled, such as fatigue, difficulty breathing, respiratory diseases and irritation of the eyes, nose, or mouth.
Vitamin E Acetate
Vitamin E Acetate was another cutting agent commonly used in vape oils. However, with recent findings linking Vitamin E Acetate to severe and ACUTE lung injuries, it has been highly discouraged and/or banned from various states. Avoid this thinning agent, as it’s one of the most dangerous.
Read More: Top 5 Delta 8 Gummies For Sleep
3 Safest Delta 8 Cartridges
1 Best Delta 8 THC Cartridge
Binoid Delta 8 THC 510 Cartridge – 1 Gram
Binoid is a reputable cannabis manufacturer known for their safety and high quality products. All of their cartridges are THC FREE and tested five times before getting 3rd party lab tested.
Their manufacturing facility is cGMP Certified and ISO 9001:2015 Certified, meaning the products are manufactured according to high quality control, customer, and applicable statutory regulations.
In other words, safe materials are safely manufactured. The delta 8 vape oil is free of additives, fillers, and cutting agents. The formula consists of exactly 92% distillate, 4% terpene flavors, and 4% plant lipids.
Choose from 1 gram of hybrid, indica, or sativa strains offered in a whopping 15 different flavor, and containing 93% (930mg) delta 8.
Their hemp is sourced from local hemp farmers in the state of Oregon to ensure health benefiting terpenes and high cannabinoid concentrations while avoiding harmful contaminants in the soil.
2 Most Popular
Cake Delta 8 THC 510 Cartridge – 1 gram
Another delta 8 cartridge vendor which has take the industry by storm, is the brand Cake. Cake provides independent lab tests for each of their 15 delicious flavors offered in Indica, Sativa, and Hybrid strains.
Their carts are free of additives, fillers, and cutting agents, and composed of full ceramic material. Therefore, delta 8 thc distillate never makes contact with any metal surfaces.
Roughly 94% (940mg) of delta 8 THC is contained in each cartridge, and less than 0.3% THC.
Unfortunately, many fake Cake products have recently flooded the market. Always make sure you’re purchasing from a legitimate vendor and if possible, offers lab results.
3 Runner Up
Area 52 Delta 8 THC Cartridge
Due to their high quality products, Area 52 has become a well known company in the cannabis industry. They only use federally legal hemp when manufacturing their products, and the cartridges are comprised of a glass CCELL with a ceramic core and mouthpiece.
Choose from 3 delicious flavors, and sativa, indica, or hybrid strains. Each cartridge totals 900mg of delta 8 THC and contains less than 0.3% THC.
Area 52 likes to keep it simple, which is why the only ingredients in their delta 8 carts include hemp extract and a natural terpene blend.
Although Area 52 lab tests individual batches using third party labs, the results can only be obtained by contacting the company and presenting a request.
How to Safely Use Delta 8 Carts
The key to safely using delta 8 cartridges, is to not overdo it. In other words, proper dosage is a must. Dosage is measured by puffs.
If you’re new to any type of vaping products, take 2-3 puffs. Each dose should be about 2-3 seconds long and inhaled at a slow to normal rate.
New users should not strongly inhale, as that’ll more than likely trigger severe coughing, which is not harmful, but it’s definitely unpleasant.
You should experience the initial effects within a matter of minutes (sometimes seconds). If you don’t feel anything, wait an additional 20-30 minutes after the first hits then take 2-3 more.
Experienced users should have a much better idea regarding the size of their dose. However, if you need help, simply follow the aforementioned guidelines intended for new users and you’ll be well on your way to reaping the amazing benefits of your delta 8 cartridge.
Read More: Top 5 Delta 8 Gummies For Pain
Are Gas Station Delta 8 Carts Safe?
This is a difficult question to answer, as gas stations will sell different delta 8 cart brands. Use the information you learned in this post to identify harmful ingredients on the product packaging.
If the packaging contains only partial information, a quick Google search with the brand name and specific product will tell you all you need to know.