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Will HHC Land You In The Hot Seat? — Explaining HHC’s Effect On Cannabis Drug Tests

HHC isn’t as hyped as delta-8 THC, but it’s steadily working its way into the American hemp industry. If you’re passionate about hemp flowers or alternative cannabinoids, chances are you’ve run across a few online threads detailing the unique features of HHC’s effect. You may have also seen potential customers ask whether taking HHC before a drug screening is safe. 

Since HHC is technically in the THC family, it makes sense that people would be concerned about this cannabinoid’s impact on their professional life. New customers must understand the risks associated with this new cannabinoid before popping an HHC cart in their vaporizer. 

Back Up A Second — What The Heck Is HHC? 

Before diving into whether HHC impacts drug screenings, let’s first review the basics of HHC. Short for hexahydrocannabinol, HHC is a synthetic cannabinoid related to other THC molecules. Structurally speaking, the critical difference between HHC and other THC molecules is its lack of double bonds. Scientists make HHC in a lab setting by pumping delta-8 or CBD with extra hydrogen atoms.

Interestingly, the “hydrogenation” process used to make HHC is the same that manufacturers use to make shelf-stable items like cooking oils or margarine. Similar to these food products, HHC appears to have a sturdier molecular structure, which translates to a longer shelf-life. Many people in the hemp industry believe it could take years before HHC significantly degrades in quality and potency. 

But it’s not just HHC’s shelf stability that makes it an attractive option for shoppers. Please remember that HHC is in the THC family, which means it has psychoactive properties. Just how psychoactive HHC is is up for debate, but many customers claim HHC is a smidge less intense than delta-9. 

Anecdotal reports suggest HHC has mostly energizing “sativa-like” qualities. This may make HHC vape carts a better choice for daytime “wake & bake” sessions. Also, since HHC seems more psychoactive than delta-8, it’s not the ideal choice for total beginners. 

HHC’s Effect – Can It Wreck A Standard Cannabis Drug Screening?

HHC's effect on a Standard Cannabis Drug Screening

Short answer: HHC will likely appear on a standard cannabis drug screening. 

Even though HHC has a different structure compared with delta-8 and delta-9 THC, it’s similar enough to elicit a positive reading. Today’s cannabis drug tests aren’t all that sophisticated. If you have HHC in your bloodstream at the time of screening, chances are it will interpret HHC or associated metabolites as delta-9 THC. 

Also, don’t forget that one of HHC’s prime selling points is its super long shelf-life. On its own, delta-9 THC takes a notoriously long time to exit a person’s system. It will most likely take extra long for HHC to fully clear a user’s body. 

Although everyone metabolizes HHC at different rates, it’s unlikely this cannabinoid will pass out of your body within a few days. Cannabinoids are fat-soluble, so they don’t go straight into your urine like B vitamins. Depending on your weight, this cannabinoid could linger in your fat cells for months. 

So, Is HHC Off Limits For Employees? 

If you work in a strict setting, using HHC products on your off days is risky. Even though hemp-derived HHC is technically legal per the 2018 US Farm Bill, it can mimic the federally illegal delta-9 THC. Plus, since HHC has such a sturdy chemical structure, it’s impossible to quickly get this cannabinoid out of your system. 

If you’re interested in experimenting with HHC, it’s best to reserve it for an extended vacation. There’s no telling how long HHC will linger in your system, but it will probably stay for at least a few days. The more often you take HHC, the greater odds it will stick around for even longer. 

Until we understand HHC’s absorption better — or new drug screening devices can distinguish HHC from delta-9 — please don’t use HHC vape carts recklessly.

How Long Does HHC Stay In A Person’s Body? 

As mentioned in the preceding sections, nobody knows how long HHC stays in an “average” person’s body. So many factors could influence HHC’s half-life. Some people may be able to pass HHC out of their system in a few days, while others may have traces of HHC for weeks after one session. It all depends on your average metabolism, body weight, and age. 

While we can’t say how long HHC will remain in your system, it’s safe to assume HHC has a long half-life. The extra hydrogen atoms give HHC a solid chemical structure that can withstand degradation. Plus, THC already has a long half-life, so it’d be foolish to assume HHC wouldn’t last at least as long as delta-9 in a person’s bloodstream. 

People with a higher BMI and a slower metabolism should assume HHC will last in their body for a few weeks after one use. The more frequently you use HHC products, the greater chance it will stay in your body for months. 

HHC has a similar legal status to other hemp-derived “alt THC” cannabinoids. Like delta-8 and delta-10, there are no laws banning hemp HHC products. However, since HHC is associated with delta-9 THC, many states could enact special restrictions. 

Currently, local governments are interested in outlawing delta-8 THC because it’s more popular and readily available. HHC is still slightly “under the radar,” so there aren’t many specific laws against this cannabinoid. Of course, this relative lull in legislation could change if HHC becomes more prominent in the hemp space. 

Consumers should always check their hometown’s local hemp laws before ordering products like delta-8 or HHC vape carts. Also, please ensure you’re working with a legit hemp manufacturer that screens their products for delta-9 concentrations. Only hemp products with ≤ 0.3 percent delta-9 THC are permissible under US federal law

Where Can People Find HHC In The USA? 

Buying HHC Vape and Gummies

HHC has been hit with a “double whammy.” Not only is this psychoactive cannabinoid controversial, it’s not as in demand as other hemp products. These two factors make it harder for customers to get their hands on high-quality HHC gummies or vape pods.

Currently, the easiest way for Americans to purchase HHC items is to visit reputable hemp e-commerce sites like Organic CBD Nugs. Recently, we’ve added a few lab-tested & hemp-derived HHC items to our growing portfolio. Like our delta-8 and CBD products, we promise to send third-party lab tests with our HHC gummies and vape carts. You could also review our lab reports online by following this link

If you want to learn more details on how HHC differs from other hemp cannabinoids, please review our HHC vape carts FAQs