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A Beginner’s Guide to Delta 8 THC: Tips from the Experts



With Delta 8 THC rapidly growing in popularity, many people are curious about it, yet are unsure just how to get started. Considering it will get you high, it is normal to be hesitant about trying it. However, Delta 8 offers a wide variety of recreational and health benefits, so if you’re interested, we are here to help get you started! Whether you’re a daily weed smoker, or someone who has never tried any THC before, this guide will walk you through step-by-step on the best ways to try Delta 8 THC.


What is Delta-8 THC?

Delta-8 Tetrahydrocannabinol (Delta 8 THC or D8) is a hemp-derived psychoactive compound that is making headlines across America. It is a form of THC, like it’s sister compound Delta-9 THC. Unlike weed, D8 is fully derived from the hemp plant, so it is federally legal across most of the United States. THC acts on receptors which are found on neurons in many places in the brain, teaching the brain to act differently. Keep reading as we go into more detail about D8 and the best ways to use it.


Common questions about Delta 8

Before we get into the guide, let’s tackle some common questions about Delta 8 THC first.


How do I understand Delta-8 THC doses?

Just like CBD and other hemp products, Delta 8 doses are measured in milligrams (mg). Most individual doses can be anywhere between 5mg and 150mg. People inexperienced with THC products should start with small doses, while people more experienced can start with higher doses.


Can you overdose on Delta 8 THC?

While there has never been a recorded fatal overdose from THC, having bad reactions can occur. Most of the time, these reactions are a result of taking too much. It’s like cooking; undercook your meal and it will be disappointing but burn it and your food is ruined. While this may sound worrisome, don’t worry, as this guide will help you understand how to minimize the possibility of bad reactions, and properly enjoy this groundbreaking new product.


How long do Delta-8 effects last?

The answer to this question lies almost entirely with the type of D8 product you are consuming. Smokables, like flower and vapes will have much shorter effect lengths, ranging from 30 minutes to 3 hours. On the other hand, products that are ingested (eaten) will have longer effect lengths, ranging from 4-8 hours. We go into more detail about this in the product type section of the guide.


Why are some people now choosing Delta-8 over weed?

First and foremost, Delta-8 THC is extremely similar to weed, offering enjoyable and recognizable impacts at a lower cost. However, there are subtle differences between the two compounds. The high associated with D8 is known to be about ⅔ as potent, as well as more clear-headed and energetic than weed. Also, most consumers notice an absence of paranoia and anxiety felt when consuming D8, which are both common side effects of weed. Overall, the lower potency and less side effects clearly make D8 a better option for individuals new to THC, as well as those seeking medicinal/health benefits.



What does Delta-8 feel like?
This is a tricky question to answer, as everybody will feel slightly different effects from Delta 8. However, to put it simply, you will feel high in a very similar way to weed. However, D8 is more energetic and uplifting, without so much of the cloudiness or the “intoxicating” effects that weed has. D8 is most compared to sativa strains of weed, but it has its own personality that you simply must try for yourself!


Where does Delta 8 THC come from?

It is derived from plants known as hemp. Many different compounds are derived from hemp plants, including CBD, CBG, CBN, and CBC. While Delta-9 THC is also found in hemp plants, it is only in small amounts. Farmers grow hemp crops across America and sell the plants to extractors. The extractors are then able to isolate and remove the Delta-8 THC from the plants, turning it into a distillate. Finally, Delta 8 distillate is what is used in all commonly found delta 8 products!


How do Delta 8 and CBD compare?

While both products can help with pain, anxiety, sleeping and many other ailments, CBD is not psychoactive and produces very minimal effects on the brain. Delta-8 on the other hand, produces strong effects on the brain and is psychoactive. This means, they essentially produce opposite impacts in your brain. In fact, CBD can be used to counteract the effects of Delta-8. All the compounds found in cannabis plants are called cannabinoids, and each of them have unique advantages. Read our comprehensive guides to learn more about the most common ones, like D8, CBD, CBG, CBN, and CBC.


Now let’s get into the walkthrough


Step 1: Find a reputable vendor with Delta-8


The most important first step to properly enjoying Delta 8 is to make sure you’re getting it from a reputable and legitimate hemp company. Therefore, avoid impulse buying the first D8 product you see online or in your local gas station. You should make sure that the D8 you are buying is truly what it says it is, and the only way to know that is with 3rd party lab tests. “3rd party” are the keywords here, meaning it is tested by an outside lab, not affiliated with the company creating the products. Some companies showcase their own internal testing, which can easily be faked or manipulated, so you should not trust those.


Carolindica is a great place to start, as they publish all of the 3rd party lab tests to make it easy for you to see exactly what you are purchasing. Stay away from websites or businesses that do not have any lab tests publicly available, as you never know what could be in those products.

See what 3rd party lab tests look like here



Step 2: Understand Delta-8 product types and pick your favorite


Delta 8 THC is produced in a variety of different mediums and the type of product has a substantial impact on the way it will affect you. Each of these options has its own advantages and disadvantages, so it is important to understand the differences to ensure you get what you want out of your products. The product types listed below are the most common ones you will find, but there are many more out there to try!


Ingestibles/ Consumables

-Can take up to 2 hours to feel the effects, but effects will last 4-8 hours.

  • Delta-8 Gummies / Delta 8 Candy Likely the most popular option, these are perfect for allowing accurate dosing while satisfying your sweet tooth. Rainbow belts, sour straws, lollipops, and much more can all be made with Delta 8.


  • Delta-8 Capsules/ Delta 8 Softgels- Capsules or softgels look and feel like your standard dietary pills and are great for providing accurate dosing, without adding anything extra to the equation. No sugar, flavor or additives, just Delta-8. This is the perfect option for those who want to get straight to the point.


  • Delta 8 Tinctures- Tinctures are suspended in a liquid, usually MCT oil. They are a unique option for ingesting D8, as you can take them sublingually and experience effects very quickly. To do this, simply apply the tincture below your tongue and hold it there as long as possible. Tinctures also give users the ability to dose their own food and drinks, thereby creating their own edibles!



-Feel effects quickly, but they will not last as long as ingestibles.

  • Delta 8 vapes- The most effective and popular smokable form of D8. Attach the cartridge to a standard vape battery, then take a few small puffs and you will feel the effects almost instantly!


  • Delta 8 smokable flower- While weed is most commonly found as flower, D8 flower is not found in nature yet. What this means is that any D8 flower on the market is actually CBD or CBG flower, sprayed with Delta-8 distillate.



  • Bulk Delta 8 Distillate- Distillate is the most dynamic product type, as it is the base for most of the other types of products. Found as a clear, sticky substance, you can eat it, smoke it, vaporize it or do just about anything with it, like adding it to coffee/tea or making your own edibles.


  • Delta 8 Distillate Syringes- This is distillate but prepared in an easy-to-use syringe. Simply apply a small amount of heat to the syringe, squeeze and enjoy! Most people should start with these before moving on to bulk Delta 8 distillate. A popular way of taking this is to add some to a hot tea or coffee and stir.



To summarize, consumables like gummies, tinctures and capsules can take 30-90 minutes to kick in, while vapes and smokables produce effects almost immediately. What this means is that consumables are typically better for someone trying to enjoy Delta 8 for long periods of time or tackle health ailments, while smokables are typically better for social situations.

So which product type should a beginner start with?

If you are brand new to delta-8, gummies are probably the best way to start, as they can be cut into smaller pieces, so you can essentially make any dose with them. Capsules are also a great option, because the dosing is listed clearly on the packaging. While tinctures and vapes give you the ability to administer your preferred dosage by controlling how much you give yourself, they can be challenging to properly gauge for a first timer.



Step 3: Consider your needs and gauge your tolerance


While different product types change the nature of Delta 8 effects, your own body has the biggest impact on the way it will feel to you. Everybody has different heights, weights and endocannabinoid systems, which all play a large role in the way your body utilizes Delta 8. This means it isn’t a “one size fits all” type of product, so you should ask yourself these three questions each time before dosing yourself:


  1. Do I currently have a tolerance to D8?
  2. How intense do I want this experience to be?
  3. How long do I want it to last?


Understanding tolerance

This is the most important aspect to consider, as your body will build up strong tolerances to THC products with consistent use. While it doesn’t happen immediately, you will start to notice that your preferred dosage affects you less over time. So, think about your recent experiences with D8. If you have rarely/never consumed it, or not for at least a month, then you basically have no tolerance. Taking short breaks from D8 will lower your tolerance, so if you are unhappy with how much it takes to make you feel the way you used to, simply take a tolerance break!


Delta 8 vs. Delta 9 tolerance

Delta 8 and Delta 9 do not share the same tolerance, so even if you smoke weed regularly, you probably have a low tolerance to D8. While you may be mentally prepared for the effects, your body isn’t, so be careful not to take too much at first. What this also means is that switching back and forth from D8 to D9 can help keep tolerances low.


Understanding Intensity

Everybody desires different effects, so it is important to think about how strong you want your experience to be. This can also change each time you dose yourself, so you shouldn’t feel like you need to always take the same amount. When trying D8, the more you take, the more intense the effects will be. Understand that taking twice as much doesn’t mean you will feel effects for twice as long, but rather the effects will be twice as strong. Again, this is like cooking. Would you ever bake something at 700 degrees for 10 minutes when the recipe calls for 350 degrees over 20 minutes?


Understanding length of effects

While the length of effects depends mostly on the product type you choose, the amount of D8 you take can also change the length of effects. While taking extra D8 can produce slightly longer effects, you may accidentally take more than you can handle. Therefore, the best way to make the effects last longer is just to take more later in the day, instead of all at once.



Step 4 Pick the best Delta 8 dose for you


Most reputable companies give their customers options on how much Delta-8 THC they want in their products. For example, Carolindica offers 4 gummy strengths: 10mg, 20mg, 30mg, 40mg, and 50mg. Keep in mind that you can always eat more but you can’t uneat D8! Use this guide to understand how much you aim to dose yourself with.


  • 1mg- 5mg: Very light effects. This is a very safe place to start. Those experienced with THC will likely not feel much at all.


  • 10mg: Light effects but can start to feel strong to those who have minimal experience with THC. New users should always start with 10mg or less.


  • 20mg: Mild effects. People inexperienced with THC should see this as their maximum dosage until they get comfortable with Delta-8. Work your way past this point through experience and an understanding of your desired effects.


  • 30mg: Relatively strong effects that will certainly feel like a lot to those with minimal experience. This is the highest point that you should start even if you are already very familiar with THC.


  • 40mg: For the bold. This amount produces strong effects and will certainly be too much for people who are not experienced with THC products. A tolerance is usually necessary to enjoy this amount and above.


  • 50mg-150mg: Extremely strong effects. Should only be consumed by those very experienced with THC and have high D8 tolerances.


  • 150mg+           “I want to see God”


Step 5: Take less than what you planned on and wait two hours.

This is the most important step to properly getting started with Delta 8! When you get your products, the first thing many people want to do is pop a whole gummy or take a bunch of hits from their new vape cartridge. Please don’t do this!! Start small and then wait at least 2 hours to make sure you are comfortable with the effects. You can always eat another gummy later, but you can’t take one back. To bring this back to our cooking analogy, you can always throw an undercooked steak back on the grill, but once you overcook it there is no going back.


Step 6: Did you take too much Delta 8? Take some CBD!

Hopefully, this is a step you never have to get to, but if you do find yourself uncomfortable with the effects of D8, you can use CBD to counteract them. In these situations, it is best to consume a large amount of CBD; aim for 50-200mg. And this isn’t a perfect solution, so you should keep this in your back pocket and start by taking small amounts of D8 instead of taking too much and needing CBD.



Parting thoughts

Delta 8 THC can be life changing for many people, but the incredible benefits don’t come without potential drawbacks. The biggest mistake someone can make with Delta 8 is to take too much before they are ready. Tolerances are not built instantly, so don’t expect to suddenly have a high tolerance after taking a single gummy. Ask yourself the 3 questions each time you prepare to dose yourself until you feel fully comfortable with D8. And remember, you can always take more later in the day, so start small and work your way up.


If you have any other questions, you can always message the experts at Carolindica who are happy to assist you. Do you think we missed anything in this guide? Please let us know!


Now that you are ready to try Delta-8 THC, find your next favorite product here!


About the Author:

Chris Karazin possesses a decade of specialized in-depth experience in cultivating and developing hemp products. In July 2019, he established Ahven LLC, operating as Carolindica, and has since dedicated four years to advancing the hemp industry. Working closely with leading hemp enterprises in North Carolina and throughout the United States, Chris has a passion and commitment to excellence, industry collaboration, and communicating the many benefits of quality hemp products.


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