Is HHC Safe? And Other Frequently Asked Questions

Tim Rosenberger Tim Rosenberger

March 31, 2022

After decades of obscurity, the HHC cannabinoid is getting its moment in the sun. Some companies specializing in CBD and delta-8 have recently introduced HHC products to their range.

But while there’s no doubt HHC is popular, many people have questions. Where does HHC come from? What does it do? And vitally, is HHC safe? 

If you’re here with any of these queries or concerns, welcome! You’ve found the right post. I’ll be addressing everything you need to know about HHC, right after I’ve shown you my top five HHC products of 2022!

Top 5 Begin Here

1. Best Selling HHC

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HHC E-Liquid by Genesis

Experienced and enthusiastic vapers often like to make up their own e-liquid concoctions. For vaping connoisseurs, this Genesis HHC E-Liquid stands out from the crowd.

The 100ml bottle contains 1000mg of HHC, at a concentration of 10mg/ml. While hardcore recreational users may prefer something more intense, it’s a solid amount for first-timers and occasional vapers.

Genesis uses premium HHC distillate in its e-liquids, which you can mix with delta-8, CBD, or even nicotine. Choose between four delicious flavors, all of which are third-party tested with less than 0.3% THC.

Flavors: Blue Raspberry, Bubble Gum, Starburst, Watermelon

2. Most Popular

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Binoid CBD – HHC Vape Cartridges (1 Gram)

One of the early players in the HHC market, Binoid CBD has developed a stellar collection of vape carts that deliver mighty potency and flavor. Thanks to the 510-threaded design, you can attach these carts to all regular vape batteries.

Binoid CBD provides a thorough breakdown, detailing that HHC distillate makes up 94% of the cart, with plant-derived terpenes topping up the other 6%. Critically, all ingredients come from legal industrial hemp.

Pick from a selection of premium sativa, indica, and hybrid HHC carts. Binoid CBD provides a third-party report for its HHC distillate rather than each product. That’s a mark against them, but all is perfect with the analysis from Gobi Hemp.

Strains: Cali Gold (Hybrid – Vibes), Gorilla Glue (Hybrid – Composed), Hawaiian Sunrise (Sativa – Morning), Lucid Blue (Sativa – Lucid), Sunset Sherbert (Indica – Warmth), Super Silver Haze (Sativa – Heightened) 

3. Runner Up

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ELYXR LA – HHC Tincture (1000mg)

With HHC Tinctures from ELYXR LA, you can sidestep the health risks of smoking or vaping HHC and enjoy a perfectly safe experience. And at 33.3mg/ml and 1000mg HHC per 30ml bottle, prepare for a powerful high!

ELYXR LA incorporates nanotechnology in its premium HHC oils, which enhances potency by improving bioavailability. You can also indulge in specific psychoactive effects with ELYXR’s blended tinctures – Awake, Relax, and Sleep.

The KCA Labs third-party report shows roughly even concentrations of (9R)-HHC and (9S)-HHC. ELYXR LA’s HHC tinctures are fully compliant with federal law, passing purity checks and containing no detectable THC.

Blends: (Awake) Lemon Verbena, (Relax) Blueberry Lavender Lemonade, (Sleep) Mellow Grape, Citrus Orange, Peppermint 

4. Runner Up

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HHC Disposables by Genesis

Are you looking for an all-in-one HHC high? Take the stress out of vaping with a 2000mg HHC Disposable by Genesis. Fully loaded and ready to vape, you can start vaping as soon as you remove the device from its packaging!

Genesis makes these disposables using hemp-derived HHC distillate and mouth-watering natural terpenes. Inhale to activate the device and recharge using a USB charger.

Sure, disposables cost a bit more than carts or standalone e-liquids, but the ease of use makes the higher price tag worth it. Genesis currently offers its HHC disposables in five strains, which all have less than 0.3% THC.

Strains: Ekto Cooler (Hybrid), Pink Kush (Hybrid), Maui Wowie (Sativa), Purple Urkle (Indica), Slurricane (Indica) 

5. Runner Up

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Delta Extrax – Sours Hydro HHC Gummies

If you love HHC and are a fan of sour candies, don’t miss these Sours Hydro HHC Gummies from Delta Extrax. With 10mg HHC per serving, anticipate a potent and long-lasting high, remarkably like that of marijuana.

Delta Extrax Gummies initially hit you with punchy sourness, which gives way to a sweet and moreish finish. I’m massively impressed with the taste of these gummies, which comes from a combo of natural flavorings and plant-based terpenes.

Each tub of Sours Hydro HHC Gummies contains 25 servings – this adds up to a total of 250mg HHC. Accurate Test Lab provides the third-party report for these fruity treats and confirms their potency and Farm Bill compliance.  

What is HHC?

If HHC is new to you, don’t fret – hardly anyone in the world of weed knew about it until recently! Hexahydrocannabinol (HHC) is a cannabinoid, a hydrogenated derivative of THC, and America’s favorite new hemp-based legal high.

HHC is a psychoactive, mind-altering substance that induces euphoria and makes you giggly. Effects-wise, HHC checks in at 80% as potent as THC but has a more soothing calming impact than the cannabinoid we are more familiar with.

Studies show that HHC acts similarly to THC, attaching itself to the endocannabinoid system’s CB1 receptors. These receptors are concentrated in the central nervous system, hence why they are associated with psychological effects.

HHC may have a lower binding affinity to CB1 receptors than THC, but it doesn’t compromise much on potency. And you can always take more to make up for it!

Is HHC Safe?

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Yes, hemp-derived HHC products are safe. HHC distillate is the primary ingredient in these products and is safe when created in the appropriate conditions.

However, not all HHC distillate is high quality. Sadly, the HHC industry is full of scammers that cut corners during manufacturing, making possibly unsafe products as a result.

You can confirm that an HHC product is safe and legit by reading the corresponding third-party certificate of analysis (COA). If such a report isn’t available, you can assume the producer is up to something they shouldn’t be!

The top third-party labs analyze HHC products for an array of impurities – these include bacteria, mycotoxins, heavy metals, and residual solvents. Providing the lab gives the product a clean bill of health, you can assume it’s safe to consume!

How is HHC made?

Cannabis plants make HHC naturally, albeit only in trace quantities. While techically a naturally occurring substance, nearly all HHC used in commercial products comes from laboratories. In that sense, HHC products are like delta-8 and delta-10 products. 

Making HHC in a laboratory is a relatively cheap process. That’s why companies can offer HHC e-liquids, tinctures, and other products at affordable prices.

Most HHC starts as THC-isolate and undergoes a process called hydrogenation. It happens naturally – which is the only reason why HHC exists – but lab technicians can maximize and streamline the process.

By infusing hydrogen into THC, the isolate extract hydrogenates (i.e., gains a hydrogen molecule) and transforms into HHC. It’s incredible how such a simple process can turn a banned substance into a legal one! 

What does HHC do?

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HHC is mostly taken as a recreational high among those seeking as close a replacement as possible to THC. 

When smoked or vaped, HHC produces an intense high lasting for around three hours. However, if consumed in an edible or capsule, HHC can sustain psychoactive effects for six hours or more.

In addition to the euphoria, HHC also stimulates appetite – that could arguably be a therapeutic quality. Scientists are exploring whether cannabinoids could help treat eating disorders.

During the high, HHC causes impaired reaction times, a loss of coordination, and short-term memory loss. The intoxicating properties may also trigger HHC-induced anxiety. However, these effects are short-lived and subside within a few hours.

Is HHC better than other cannabinoids?

HHC is one of several cannabinoids in high demand right now. Thanks to the loose legislation of the 2018 Farm Bill, many obscure cannabinoids are enjoying a moment in the limelight. But how does HHC match up against its rivals?

HHC vs. THC: If recreational marijuana is legal where you live, it’s unlikely that you’ll be interested in HHC when you can buy the real thing. However, if you find regular weed too potent, the milder HHC may reduce side effects.

HHC vs. delta-8: Delta-8 was the first hemp-derived legal high to capture the public’s imagination. But delta-8 is only 50 to 75% as effective as THC, whereas HHC registers at around 80%.

If a realistic marijuana high is what you’re after, HHC outperforms delta-8. But if you’re concerned about anxiety and paranoia, the lower potency of delta-8 could work in your favor.

It’s worth noting that delta-8 and HHC offer different highs. The former is energizing while the latter is relaxing. You could kick off your day with a dose of delta-8 before finishing up with a few soothing hits of HHC. 

HHC vs. THC-O: The outrageously strong THC-O (aka THC-O-acetate) is described as psychedelic-like in effects. For seasoned psychonauts only, THC-O gets you much higher than HHC.

If you’re ready for a rollercoaster ride, THC-O will transport you to new highs. But if you prefer to stay grounded and in control of your trip, stick with the relatively mild HHC.

Is HHC Legal?

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HHC must be hemp-derived and retain a natural origin. The Drug Enforcement Administration has not spoken explicitly about HHC but made interesting and relevant comments concerning delta-8 products.

Some have suggested delta-8 products made from lab-produced extracts should be illegal on synthetic grounds. Those critics would no doubt make the same argument about HHC.

According to the 2018 Farm Bill, synthetic cannabinoids are illegal. But the DEA has clarified that this term describes cannabinoids made with “non-cannabis materials”. In other words, synthetic cannabinoids have no natural basis.

Clearly, this doesn’t apply to lab-made HHC. Chemists concoct HHC using CBD-isolate extract, which comes from natural industrial hemp. Judging by the DEA’s recent comments, we can confidently declare that HHC products are legal.

Will HHC Make Me Fail a Drug Test?

It’s the question everyone wants an answer to – but we don’t have a clear one yet. While other legal highs, such as delta-8 products, come with a warning that you can still fail drug tests, the same may not apply with HHC.

Drug tests that screen for cannabis don’t detect the original cannabinoid, but its metabolite – that’s THC-COOH in the case of THC. 

A 1991 study in Pharmacology, Biochemistry, and Behavior found that HHC’s metabolites are 8alpha-hydroxy-HHC and 8-beta-hydroxy-HHC. 

While much like THC-COOH, it’s currently unknown if these HHC metabolites would trigger a test set up for THC. But HHC metabolites shouldn’t be your only concern when weighing up whether it’s worth taking HHC if you’re drug tested often.

HHC distillate usually comes from THC-isolate. A sloppy hydrogenation process could leave the distillate with THC residuals. HHC flower products also have low but notable levels of naturally occurring THC.

I recommend not using HHC products if you’re worried about drug tests. Right now, there are too many uncertainties related whether HHC metabolites show up and the purity of HHC products for it to be worth taking the risk.

How Can I Find Good Quality HHC Products?

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HHC products are the latest craze in hemp, with companies popping up from seemingly nowhere and selling tinctures, e-liquids, gummies, and more. I suggest remaining with well-known hemp brands for your HHC needs.

Brands like CBD Genesis, Binoid CBD, and ELYXR LA already know what it takes to make excellent hemp-based products. You can trust them to go about the manufacturing process correctly and meet third-party testing requirements.

Ultimately, wherever you buy HHC, always purchase from brands that can show third-party certificates of analysis (COA) for products. It’s the only way of knowing if they are making safe, genuine, and Farm Bill compliant HHC.

I also recommend buying HHC from established online stores with prior experience making and selling CBD and delta-8 products. These guys can spot scammers and grifters from a mile off and protect you from those selling fake or low-quality HHC.

Are you excited to try HHC? Then head over to CBD Genesis and check out their selection of HHC cartridges, disposables, e-liquids, and tinctures!

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