Delta 10 vs Delta 9 vs Delta 8: Key Differences

Tim Rosenberger Tim Rosenberger

March 16, 2022

Delta-8, delta-9, and now delta-10 – sometimes it’s hard to make sense of them all! Hemp-derived cannabinoids are all the rage lately, and each one produces a specific kind of psychoactive high. But which one should you choose?

In this post, I want to explore the key differences between delta-10, delta-9, and delta-8. I’ll outline the effects of each cannabinoid before going deeper into the comparisons. We’ll be looking at recreational use and therapeutic potential, too.

But let’s start with a short review of the five best legal hemp-based highs available in 2022! 

Top 5 Begin Here

1. Best Selling Delta 9 THC Edibles

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Delta 9 THC Edibles by Genesis

Delta-9 gummies are bigger than typical edibles to ensure they meet Farm Bill regulations – as seen with Genesis’ 3.3-gram gummies. A solid 7.5mg of delta-9 blends with 1.25mg cannabichromene (CBC), cannabigerol (CBG), and cannabinol (CBN).

The combination of compliant delta-9 and non-intoxicating minor cannabinoids makes for a full-spectrum high with the entourage effect brought to the fore. You’ll feel stoned and euphoric for several hours while remaining relaxed and calm.

Genesis Delta-9 Edibles contain vegan-friendly pectin and come in several fruity flavors. The certificate of analysis from Botanacor confirms these gummies are Farm Bill Compliant.

Sizes: 20-count (150mg), 40-count (300mg), 80-count (600mg) 

2. Most Popular

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ELYXR LA – Delta-8 Cartridges (1000mg)

Indulge in the potent psychoactive effects of ELYXR LA’s Delta-8 Cartridges. Made with a simple mixture of delta-8 distillate and natural terpenes, these vape carts contain a staggering 94% or 940mg delta-8!

ELYXR LA’s carts have 510-threaded connections and fit securely to all 510-threaded vape batteries. What’s more, they stock a broad range of cartridges, with several sativas, indicas, and hybrids to keep you satisfied.

My personal favorite is Pineapple Express – it’s a world-famous sativa strain with fruity flavors and energizing effects. Every ELYXR LA delta-8 cartridge is third-party tested by Marin Analytics.

Strains: Blue Dream (Sativa), Pineapple Express (Sativa), Straw Jack (Sativa), Chocolate Raspberry (Hybrid), Purple Dream (Hybrid), Raspberry Lemonade (Hybrid), Cake Kush (Indica), ELYXR OG (Indica), Skywalker OG (Indica), and more!

3. Runner Up

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Delta-10 Disposables by Genesis

Bringing you the best of delta-10 and delta-8, these disposable vape pens from Genesis are ideal for all scenarios. The 1000mg built-in carts contain a 2:1 mix of delta-8 to delta-10 and deliver a euphoric and uplifting high. 

Whether you’re looking for a morning psychoactive buzz with your coffee or want to get high discreetly, Genesis disposables work a treat. The breath activation means you don’t have to fiddle around with pressing buttons. Inhale and enjoy!

These single-use disposables come fitted with a rechargeable battery. You can currently buy Genesis Delta-10 disposables in five unique flavors. Third-party tested with zero detectable THC.

Strains: Amnesia (Hybrid), Cookies & Cream (Sativa), Forbidden (Indica), Sunshine (Hybrid), Zaza (Hybrid)

4. Runner Up

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Pure Xen – Delta-8 THC Tinctures

Deliver delta-8 into your body safely with a tincture oil from Pure Xen. Choose from five strains and three different potencies – a relatively mild 1200mg (40mg/ml), a middling 2000mg (66.6mg/ml), and a seriously intense 5000mg (166.66mg/ml).

Pure Xen’s Delta-8 Tinctures contain purified delta-8 distillate, clean, botanical terpenes, and an MCT-based carrier oil. The terpene profiles provide flavor and make tinctures more energizing or relaxing, depending on the terpene makeup. 

The medium-chained triglycerides (MCT) boost delta-8 bioavailability and absorption. MCT oil is a more effective carrier oil than vegetable glycerin. Third-party tested for purity and Farm Bill compliance.

Strains: Blue Dream, Forbidden Fruit, Gelato, Grand Daddy Purple, Pineapple Xenpress

5. Runner Up

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Delta Extrax – Urb Delta 9 THC Gummies

Last up, we have the always impressive Delta Extrax – they have entered the delta-9 market with some tasty gummies, as part of their Urb range. Vegan-friendly and produced with premium hemp-based delta-9 extract, these gummies are for everyone.

Delta Extrax keeps everything Farm Bill compliant, infusing 10mg of delta-9 into each 6-gram gummy. Each pack comes with 10 servings, equating to 100mg delta-9 in all. Purified terpenes bring delightful natural fruit flavorings to Delta Extrax’s treats.

Be aware these gummies may melt and lose their form, so keep refrigerated! The delta-9 won’t lose its potency but melted gummies will lead to inconsistent dosing. Infinite Chemical Analysis Labs provides perfect third-party analyses.

Flavors: Blueberry Citrus, Guavaberry Fruit, Kiwi Mixer 

What is Delta 9?

Delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (delta-9) is another name for THC, used in the context of legal hemp-based products. Delta-9 is a naturally occurring and psychoactive cannabinoid and typically the most prominent substance in marijuana.

A partial agonist of the CB1 and CB2 receptors in the endocannabinoid system (ECS), delta-9 has recreational and therapeutic value. While renowned for being euphoric and appetite-inducing, delta-9 may reduce pain and inflammation, too. 

Delta-9 is the most intoxicating natural psychoactive cannabinoid. Humans have consumed weed, and therefore delta-9, for thousands of years. The substance has survived prohibition to become one of the world’s most popular recreational drugs.

What is the difference between compliant delta-9 and THC?

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“But isn’t cannabis banned at the federal level?” I hear you asking. Technically, yes, but the 2018 Agriculture Improvement Act (Farm Bill) has cleared a legal pathway for hemp-derived compliant delta-9 products.

In writing the Farm Bill and legalizing hemp, lawmakers conceded that the plant naturally produces THC and that keeping it totally banned wasn’t feasible. Therefore, they decided that hemp plants could legally have up to 0.3% THC.

Enter compliant delta-9. Savvy hemp companies have taken the legal wording literally, using the 0.3% concession to produce psychoactive delta-9 edibles. These are effectively the same as THC edibles, but they weigh a lot more!

For a delta-9 gummy with a sizeable 10mg THC to meet Farm Bill regulations, the edible must weigh no less than 3.33 grams. If a delta-9 product has more than 0.3% THC, it would immediately become marijuana and a Schedule 1 drug.

In a nutshell, compliant delta-9 and THC are the same, but the former describes legal, hemp-derived products and the latter refers to weed edibles.

What is Delta 8?

Delta-8 is a naturally occurring cannabinoid in cannabis, however, it’s typically only found in low amounts. Delta-8 is a THC analog, with an almost identical chemical structure to THC – one carbon-carbon double bond is in a different position.

Researchers at the University of Illinois partially synthesized delta-8 in 1941, with full synthesis achieved in 1965. Delta-8 existed in obscurity until the 2018 Farm Bill, but the cannabinoid is now a popular legal high. 

What is Delta 10?

Delta-10 is another THC analog with a similar structure to THC, synthesized by researchers in the 1980s. The cannabinoid rarely appears in the natural world but has occasionally been reported by scientists in trace amounts.

Delta-10 has also gone mainstream since the Farm Bill passed. The psychoactive effects of delta-10 are in high demand in states where recreational marijuana is still illegal. 

Delta 10, Delta 9, or Delta 8: Which One is Right for You?

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All three cannabinoids have a passionate user base – otherwise, they wouldn’t exist! Indeed, some people like to incorporate multiple cannabinoids into their daily dosing routine. 

Let’s compare delta-10, delta-9, and delta-8 by discussing potency, side effects, and accessibility.

Potency

Delta-9, or regular THC, is the most potent cannabinoid of the three. Analysis from World Health Organization (WHO) researchers has found that delta-8 is up to 50% milder than THC. Delta-10 appears even less potent than delta-8.

Potency doesn’t necessarily matter. If you would typically take 10mg THC, you could ingest 20mg delta-8 for the same effect. More interesting are the specific properties. Anecdotes suggest that delta-10 and delta-8 are more stimulating than THC.

Maybe you want to get stoned during the day but can’t risk the overwhelming intensity of a THC product. A delta-8 or delta-10 product will give you a mellower psychoactive effect and a useful energy boost to go with it. 

Side effects

The reduced potency of delta-8 and delta-10 means they also cause fewer side effects than compliant delta-9 or THC. The latter’s powerful psychoactive properties have long been linked to anxiety, paranoia, and hallucinations (i.e., a bad trip).

The short-term memory loss and impaired coordination associated with cannabis use are also less prominent with milder delta-8 and delta-10 products

However, this still depends on your dose. If you increase your intake to compensate, these side effects will come back in full force.

That said, when it comes to more serious mental disorders like psychosis and schizophrenia, you should not take any of these substances. Tetrahydrocannabinols may trigger these disorders if they run in your family, or worsen existing symptoms. 

Accessibility

While delta-10, delta-9, and delta-8 are all federally legal, this isn’t the case in every state. The emergence of delta-8 and delta-10 products has angered certain state legislatures, with some taking steps to ban them.

Delta-8 has the highest profile and has therefore received the most legal attention. The cannabinoid is now banned in 18 states, and many vendors refuse to ship delta-8 and delta-10 products to these areas.

However, compliant delta-9 is currently escaping and may continue to avoid such crackdowns. As delta-9 is THC, I can’t see how lawmakers could ban hemp-based delta-9 products without banning hemp products altogether.

If you’re living in Arizona, Kentucky, Utah, or anywhere else that has banned delta-8, you may have more luck with delta-9.

Therapeutic potential

All three cannabinoids may have health benefits – although we know much more about delta-9 than delta-8 or delta-10. Indeed, the FDA has approved THC-based drugs for the treatment of rare epileptic conditions.

THC has a long history of use as a natural painkiller and may be a viable alternative to addictive prescription opioid medication. In theory, the invigorating effects of delta-8 and delta-10 could make them better for daytime pain relief.

Each substance could also play a role in managing eating disorders. Tetrahydrocannabinols stimulate appetite by binding to CB1 receptors in the ECS. Delta-9 has the most potent effect on appetite.

Types of Delta 10, Delta 9, and Delta 8 Products

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Different hemp-based products generate different highs, depending on how the cannabinoids get absorbed into the bloodstream. 

Please note that, as of February 2022, hemp-based delta-9 products are only available as edibles or drinkables. Other product types do not weigh enough for companies to get around the 0.3% THC ruling and still make psychoactive products.

Flower

Delta-10 and delta-8 flower consist of hemp buds, highly-concentrated distillate, and on occasions, CBD kief. Manufacturers take the hemp flower and coat or submerge it in distillate to turn it psychoactive.

You can smoke or vape flower products for the most intense and immediate high. It’s also possible to make tincture oils, capsules, and edibles with flower.

Vaping products

Disposables, cartridges, and e-liquids are all popular delta-8 and delta-10 vaping products. Single-piece disposables come with a built-in battery, and you throw them away after use. 

Cartridges attach to separate batteries using 510-threaded connections. Delta-8 and delta-10 e-liquids come in bottles and are for use in vape tanks – you can mix them with CBD or nicotine e-liquids.  

Tincture oils

For an efficient high without the health consequences of smoking or vaping, try tincture oils. A typical tincture contains delta-8 or delta-10 extract, natural terpenes, and a medium-chained triglyceride (MCT) carrier oil.

Consume tinctures sublingually (i.e., under the tongue) or by adding to your favorite beverage.

Edibles

Tasty edibles produce longer highs than any other type of hemp-based product. Gummies are the most popular edibles, but you may also find homemade baked goods, such as brownies and cookies.

Delta-9 edibles weigh more than their delta-8 and delta-10 counterparts, as the total delta-9 content must not exceed 0.3% of the edible’s weight.

Where Should I Buy Delta 10, Delta 9, and Delta 8 Products?

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Save money and avoid low-quality products by purchasing delta-10, delta-9, and delta-8 products online. Physical stores rarely have the wide-ranging selection that online vendors do. 

Established online hemp shops with in-depth knowledge of the brands and product types are more trustworthy than most brick-and-mortar stores. For instance, reputable online stores understand the need for third-party testing.

Check out CBD Genesis today for premium, lab-tested delta-10, delta-9, and delta-8 products!

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