HHC vs. Delta 10: What’s the Difference?

hhc vs delta 10

For decades, when someone spoke of marijuana, there was only one substance they were referring to: Delta-9 THC. While you can still find plenty of products that feature Delta-9 as an active ingredient, today’s cannabis market is broader and more diverse than ever before.

Increasingly, new minor cannabinoids, such as Hexahydrocannabinol (HHC) and Delta-10, are hitting the shelves. These cannabinoids are derived from federally-legal hemp, which makes them accessible even in states that have previously prohibited Delta-9.

While these substances are similar, they possess key differences that can affect your experience. Today, we’re taking a look at HHC vs Delta 10 and sharing the key points you need to know.

What Is HHC?

Before we dive into the differences between these two cannabinoids, let’s start by briefly introducing each one.

What is HHC and how does it work? In the simplest terms, HHC is a hydrogenated form of Delta-9 THC. While it does occur naturally in the seeds and pollen of the hemp plant, it’s only available in very small, trace amounts.

Therefore, to produce it on a larger scale, manufacturers must synthesize it in a laboratory setting. To do so, they add hydrogen molecules to Delta-9 THC through a process called hydrogenation. The end result is a product that’s similar in properties and structure to Delta-9 but it isn’t technically the same as the infamous psychoactive compound.

What Is Delta-10?

Next, let’s quickly review the second cannabinoid in question. What is Delta 10 and how does it differ from HHC?

Delta-10 is another type of legal, hemp-derived cannabinoid. While it’s a relative newcomer to the cannabis market, the effects it delivers should feel familiar. Like Delta-8, Delta-10 it’s found in trace amounts in the cannabis plant but is mostly derived through chemistry.

This compound was first discovered by a cannabis cultivator and distributor in California. The team was attempting to extract THC distillate from a batch of cannabis, but the plants were contaminated with fire retardant. During the process, a strange new type of mysterious crystal started to form.

At first, the distributors thought the crystals were CBD or CBL, other types of cannabinoids. It took months of investigating, but they eventually identified them as Delta-10. Today, manufacturers can mass-produce the same substance using a process similar to the one used to create Delta-8 concentrate.

HHC vs Delta 10: What Is the High Like?

When comparing HHC vs Delta 10, you naturally want to know how each substance will affect you. Will they both get you high? Is one compound more potent than the other?

Let’s take a look.

hhc vs delta 10

The HHC High

If you’re interested in taking HHC products, it’s important to know what to expect. Will you experience an intense, psychoactive high like you’re used to getting with Delta-9? Or, will it be milder in nature?

While anecdotal reports can vary, most users are pleasantly surprised to find that HHC does deliver a high similar to conventional THC. However, you may notice that it’s not quite as potent. Rather, it’s a mild, gentle high that’s extremely enjoyable, without all of the negative side effects you’re used to, including paranoia.

When you take HHC, you might find that you feel an increased sense of inner bliss, along with supreme relaxation and euphoria. When comparing the high to Delta-10, most users agree that it’s more intense. While that can be great in the moment, keep in mind that because HHC does affect your psychoactive state, you might feel a little groggy when you come off the high.

That’s why it’s important to time your usage just right and make sure you’re always staying within the dosage guidelines that you feel the most comfortable with. Always start with a small dose of any cannabis product, and work your way up gradually once you understand your tolerance and preference.

The Delta-10 High

Now, let’s talk about Delta-10. When comparing this substance to Delta-9 THC, most users find that it’s only around 70% as powerful. Still, that means you’ll definitely feel it!

In many ways, the high you feel when you take Delta 10 products is reminiscent of the one you’ll experience when under the effects of Delta-8 THC. Both are molecularly close to Delta-9, but they’re not as intense. The main difference between these two compounds is that Delta-8 is normally associated with Indica strains, while Delta-10 has more of a Sativa-like effect.

This means that you’ll feel more sedated and relaxed on Delta-8, but Delta-10 will have a more uplifting and positive effect. This makes Delta-8 ideal for those evening hours when you want to unwind and shake off the day, while Delta-10 is best reserved for daytime use. If you need an uptick in creativity, focus, or concentration, this is the one to reach for.

How Do HHC and Delta-10 Affect Your Endocannabinoid System?

Another way that HHC differs from Delta-10 is the way it reacts with your body’s endocannabinoid system or ECS. While it can be difficult to grasp everything your ECS does, the simplest definition is that it’s a massive network of chemical signals and cellular receptors all packed together and weaving throughout your brain and body.

Your ECS is responsible for almost every bodily function you experience, including:

  • Emotional processing
  • Sleep
  • Mood
  • Memory
  • Appetite
  • Temperature control
  • Learning and memory
  • Pain control
  • Immune response
  • Inflammatory response

When a substance binds to your ECS receptors, it controls the way you experience all of the above. Cannabis-derived cannabinoids fit into these receptors like a key, turning them on to initiate a biological process. This includes THC, CBD, and HHC, among others.

Understanding this, let’s review how HHC interacts with your ECS.

HHC and Your ECS

When manufacturers hydrogenate THC to turn it into HHC, they create two distinct types of molecules:

  • 9R HHC
  • 9S HHC

Put simply, 9R HHC is considered an active molecule, and it binds to your body’s ECS receptors when you consume HHC. This catalyzes a euphoric high, similar to how you feel on Delta-9 THC.

While 9S HHC is also present, is not considered an active molecule. This is because it does not bind to your ECS receptors, nor does it generate any type of euphoric effect.

In all, the chemical structure of HHC is almost identical to THC. The active 9R HHC molecules bind to the same CB1 and CB2 receptors found in your ECS. Any time you smoke or ingest HHC, the compound enters your bloodstream and works its way into your brain from there, delivering a psychoactive and bodily high.

hhc vs delta 10

Delta-10 and Your ECS

You may wonder if Delta-10 affects your ECS in the exact same way as HHC. Like other cannabinoids, Delta-10 does bind to the CB1 and CB2 receptors in your brain. However, it does not bind as strongly to these receptors, so its effect is not as potent.

You might feel comfortable and relaxed when you take Delta-10, but it will not be quite as psychoactive of an experience.

Are These Compounds Legal?

Can you legally buy and use HHC? What about Delta-10? This is another factor to consider before you begin researching and purchasing these cannabis products. Let’s take a look.

The Legality of HHC

On a federal level, HHC is considered legal as long as the product is derived from a hemp plant that contains no more than 0.3% THC. This regulation is part of the 2018 Farm Bill, which legalized the industrial production of hemp products and their harvested cannabinoids, provided that they meet this THC guideline by dry weight.

That said, the U.S. government has allowed each individual state to set its own terms around cannabis legality, and this extends into the hemp space. While many states follow federal guidelines, some do not. Before buying HHC, check to see if it’s legal where you live.

The Legality of Delta-10

Like HHC, Delta-10 is also considered federally legal as long as it comes from a hemp plant that contains 0.3% THC or less. Again, however, it’s essential to check your state’s guidelines.

To date, 12 states have banned certain minor cannabinoids, including Delta-8 THC. While the legislation can be vaguely worded, it’s safe to assume that Delta-10 THC is also banned in any state that prohibits the use or sale of Delta-8.

Will They Show Up on a Drug Test?

If you’re trying to decide whether you should buy HHC products or Delta-10 ones, another question you might ask is whether one is more likely to show up on a drug test than the other.

As a general rule, we recommend refraining from taking any type of cannabis product if you know that you have a drug test coming up. Researchers are still learning how minor cannabinoids process through the system, and there’s no guarantee that consuming them won’t lead to a positive result.

However, certain compounds are more likely to ping on a test than others. Let’s check it out.

HHC and Drug Testing

As mentioned, HHC is molecularly similar to THC. In fact, as your body breaks down and processes each substance, it breaks it down into metabolites that closely resemble one another. Technically speaking, THC breaks down into THC-COOH and HHC becomes HHC-COOH.

Most drug tests aren’t looking specifically for the THC compound. Instead, they’re looking for these metabolites.

As THC-COOH and HHC-COOH look nearly identical, drug tests aren’t usually sophisticated enough to differentiate between the two. While some people can use HHC products like disposable vapes or gummies and pass a drug test with flying colors, others cannot. It’s best to err on the side of caution and forego them at least four weeks before testing day.

Delta-10 and Drug Testing

Like Delta-9 THC, Delta-10 also requires THC-COOH to metabolize. That means it’s likely to show up on a drug test. As with HHC, it’s best to avoid using this substance about one month before you know you’re going to test.

While the high might be gentler than traditional THC, most tests aren’t advanced enough to distinguish between Delta-9, Delta-8, and Delta-10.

Using HHC and Delta-10 Safely

Finally, let’s close with a word on safety. Both HHC and Delta-10 THC are considered semi-synthetic cannabinoids. This means that while they do occur naturally in the cannabis plant, they’re produced in a lab to create enough for mass distribution.

To make sure you’re getting the purest, highest-quality product possible, it’s critical to do your due diligence. This is one way in which HHC and Delta-10 are exactly alike.

Bad manufacturing practices can turn these cannabinoids into something dangerous to consume. If the final product contains more than 0.3% THC, it could also be considered illegal, and consuming it could carry significant legal and financial consequences.

It’s important to make sure that any time you purchase an HHC or Delta-10 product, you’re doing so from a supplier that’s well-reviewed, trustworthy, and transparent about its processes.

Whether you’re buying online or shopping in the store, ask to see third-party lab reports, like the ones we provide on our website. This verifies that the product has gone through extensive testing before hitting the market, and you can rest assured it’s pure and safe to consume. If these reports aren’t readily available, ask to see them.

You can also check review sites to learn more about each supplier’s authenticity and reputation. This is especially important when shopping for cannabis products online, as the internet is vast and anyone with a domain name can make a false claim. The processes used to create HHC and Delta-10 are intricate in nature, and you should only trust a company that’s thorough and transparent about its practices.

HHC or Delta-10: Which Will You Choose?

In the debate between HHC vs Delta 10, there’s no clear winner. Both of these compounds are minor cannabinoids that are taking the cannabis world by storm. Each delivers its own mildly euphoric effect, though HHC is slightly more potent.

If you’re not sure which one to try, you can browse both selections in our online shop! At Lit Vapes, we offer a wide variety of hemp-derived cannabis products. In addition to HHC and Delta-10, you’ll also find Delta-8, THC-O, and more.

Take a look at our selections and reach out to us with any questions!