September 16, 2022 7 min read

THC-O may be the ultimate recreational hemp product. Its highly potent and federally legal, and the wide range of formulas available mean that you can grab a THC-O product appropriate for (almost) any situation.

The question is–can you use THC-O when you’re drinking alcohol? Is mixing THC-O and alcohol safe? And if so, what can you expect from the combined effects?

Many people report using this crossfading method without experiencing any adverse effects, but there’s really no research to help us understand the possible contraindications between THC-O and alcohol. Before you take the risk, here’s what you should know about combining the two:

Table of Contents
What Happens When You Mix THC-O and Alcohol?
How Much THC-O Should You Take??
Delta-8 May Be a Better Solution
Can THC Help a Hangover?
What are the Best THC Products?
Where to Buy Hemp-Derived THC

Key Takeaways

  • Many people combine THC and alcohol with no issue, but there is still the possibility of adverse interactions.
  • THC and alcohol may potentiate each other’s effect, so you’ll definitely want to consume the two in smaller doses than usual.
  • It’s unsafe to consume THC products when drinking heavily.
  • Make sure you have a plan for transportation and a safe place to chill out if the effects of THC-O are too much.
  • Buying high-quality hemp-derived THC products is essential to a smooth and safe dosing experience.

What Happens When You Mix THC-O and Alcohol?

Red wine as it is being poured into a glass

Combining alcohol and THC, a method frequently referred to as “crossfading,” is nothing new. After all, both substances are usually present at social events, and most people think nothing of taking a few puffs of the circulating joint while they have a drink in their hand.

In fact, you’d be hard pressed to find an experienced cannabis consumer that hasn’t mixed THC and alcohol on at least one occasion. Most will agree that the effects fall somewhere in the middle of the mellow and stimulating effects of each respective substance.

In reality, however, the way that a combination of alcohol and THC will affect you depends on unique biological factors, how much you take, and the order and time frame in which you use the two substances. And although the effects of THC combined with alcohol are enjoyable for many, THC-O is on a totally different playing field. It’s much more potent, and the same crossfading rules don’t necessarily apply, so there are some adverse interactions to look out for. Here’s why:

Alcohol Has Biphasic Effects

Alcohol is biphasic, meaning that it is stimulating in smaller doses and sedating at larger doses. Everyone has an alcohol consumption threshold at which they will begin to “slow down” and feel tired, overly drunk, and even fatigued or sick.

Because THC-O is highly potent and incredibly stimulating, it will pair with alcohol differently at different points throughout the night. At first, it may match alcohol’s stimulating effects to make you feel energized, boost your mood, and make you active.

After a while, though, alcohol will start to slow you down, and the effects of THC-O could be mentally overstimulating. For this reason, people usually have more success when combining THC with small amounts of alcohol.

THC-O May Prevent Vomiting

We still need more research regarding THC-O’s antiemetic effects, but most experts believe that it has the ability to stop nausea and vomiting just like other forms of THC. This may seem like a good thing–especially if you’re someone who regularly experiences vomiting after drinking–but it's quite the opposite.

Vomiting after consuming alcohol is one of the body's purging methods for getting rid of alcohol after over-consumption. Sometimes, vomiting is just the body's way of reducing some of the body's toxic load, but other times it could be a critical step in preventing alcohol poisoning.

If you vastly over-consume alcohol (which is never recommended) but also consume THC-O that prevents the body from purging said alcohol, you may be putting yourself at risk of alcohol poisoning. As you can probably imagine, that's definitely not a good thing. Of course, this typically applies only to heavy drinking, but it something to consider when deciding whether to combine THC-O with alcohol.

Alcohol May Increase THC-O Absorption

There may also be some specific concerns to keep in mind depending on the order in which you use alcohol and THC-O. For instance, one small 2015 study found that even small doses of alcohol can increase the absorption rate of Delta-9-THC.

In other words, drinking alcohol before THC consumption may lead to stronger effects. Because THC-O is already around three times stronger than traditional THC, this could be risky business, especially for those who aren’t well acquainted with THC’s effects.

Many of the adverse side effects of THC-O are caused by overconsumption, meaning that the effects being even stronger could definitely end badly for some people if the dose isn’t adjusted accordingly.

THC-O May Delay Drunkenness

There may be risk when using the two substances in the reverse order as well. A 1992 study found that consuming THC before drinking alcohol may slow the rise in blood alcohol levels, which means it may delay the feeling of drunkenness.

This is a problem that may result in over-consumption of alcohol, or it could be a recipe for an even more dangerous situation. For instance, it may make you feel like you're actually sober enough to drive when the drunkenness is actually just delayed.

A person holds a bag of THC-O products and a THC-O flower joint at a beach party

Final Verdict: Is Mixing THC-O and Alcohol Safe?

Both alcohol and THC-O affect everyone differently, so it's hard to pinpoint the effects you may experience when combining the two. Plus, the actual effects are heavily impacted by how much of each substance you consume, and in what order you consume them. Many people are still unfamiliar with the increased potency of THC-O, which could make it even more dangerous to combine the effects of the two substances.

Ultimately, there’s not enough evidence to say if combining THC-O is inherently safe or unsafe, but you should definitely use extreme caution when combining any recreational substances.

If you plan to use THC-O and alcohol at the same time, keep these precautions in mind:

    • Know your limits. Its wise to understand your limits with both THC-O and alcohol individually before combining the two.
    • Consume less than usual.Because THC-O and alcohol may potentiate each other’s effects, you may need to lower your overall dosage of both. This can also help you to ease yourself into the effects and better understand your dosing threshold.
    • Consume substances responsibly. As always, consume recreational substances responsibly. Pay close attention to how much you are consuming and never plan to drive or operate machinery while intoxicated. Make sure you are in a comfortable, safe location and have a plan for transportation if needed.

How Much THC-O Should You Take?

Whether taking THC-O on its own or combining it with other recreational substances, understanding your dosage threshold is crucial. The amount of THC-O you need to take will be much lower than the amount of Delta-9 or Delta-8-THC you’re used to. In fact, some people enjoy THC-O doses as low as 1-5 milligrams. When combining THC-O with other substances, you may even want to cut your usual THC-O dosage in half until you better understand how the combination will affect you.

Read “How Much THC-O Should I Take?” to learn more.

Can THC Help a Hangover?

Many people claim that THC and alcohol have a unique symbiotic relationship in that THC may help ease the hangover that follows a night of drinking. There’s not much research to help us understand this perspective, but anecdotal reports have a clear consensus–THC can help soothe post-alcohol aches, nausea, and more.

The verdict is still out on THC-O’s effects (although they are thought to mimic traditional THC), but its worth noting that Delta-8-THC may help fight nausea and vomiting, soothe headaches, reduce fatigue, and stimulate appetite,. All of these benefits could be useful for battling a nasty hangover. Read “Delta-8-THC Health Benefits” to learn more.

What are the Best THC-O and Delta-8 Products?

Whether you’re trying to find a THC-O product for social events or want something to soothe post-party pains, you have a few options:

Vida Optima THC-O Vape

Vapes

THC vapes are fast-acting and make it easy to gauge your dosage because you can “stack” small doses until you reach your desired effects. Our THC-O + Delta-8-THC Vape is a perfect mix between mild mannered D8 and heady, potent THC-O, and there are three different strain profiles to choose from.

THC Flower

Flower is one of the most effective and fast-acting ways to consume THC, and you can find both THC-O and Delta-8-THC flower designed to mimic traditional cannabis flower. Inhaled THC doses take effect almost instantly, and Delta-8-THC flower generally brings a reasonable dose of CBD to the table, too.

With a variety of different Delta-8 strains available, you're likely to find something that meets your needs whether you plan to spend the day sleeping off the previous night or you need to shake it off so you can go about your day. To choose the best strain, read "Which Strain of Delta-8 Flower is Best?"

Edibles

Vida Optima Elev8 Gummies

Edibles are a convenient, pre-measured dosing method, and it's pretty easy to keep edibles on hand for when you need them. Some reports suggest that the effects of edible doses are more potent because of the way that THC is metabolized in the gut, so you may even be able to use smaller doses while reaping the same benefits. Of course, edibles may not be the best option if you're having trouble keeping food down.

Check out our Elev8 Edibles

Where to Buy Hemp-Derived THC

You can buy THC-O in stores and online in states where THC-O is legal, but shopping online gives you access to a wider variety of product types, flavors, and potencies. Our Elev8 Collection is 100% Farm Bill Compliant and made according to the industry’s highest standards. Check out our THC-O Vape Pen varieties to choose the lift you need.

Resources

  1. “An efficient new cannabinoid antiemetic in pediatric oncology” https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/7776837/
  2. “Effect of δ8-THC on alcohol-induced sleeping time in the rat” https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/BF00421026
  3. “Controlled Cannabis Vaporizer Administration: Blood and Plasma Cannabinoids with and without Alcohol” https://academic.oup.com/clinchem/article/61/6/850/5611427
  4. “Marihuana attenuates the rise in plasma ethanol levels in human subjects” https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/1326277/

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