Widespread marijuana legalization has made weed more accessible than ever.
However, marijuana is still a Schedule I controlled substance, along with ecstasy and heroin.
In other words, marijuana is still illegal as far as the federal government is concerned. This is a major roadblock to buying weed freely for both recreational and medicinal use.
This guide can help you maneuver the complicated legal marijuana landscape and introduce you to a novel and legal cannabinoid alternative that many people see as the happy medium between marijuana and CBD.
What’s the Legal Status of Marijuana?
Laws are all over the place, almost literally, because these vary significantly from state to state.
For starters, regardless of a state’s marijuana policy, federal law stays the same, and you cannot carry weed across state borders, warns by We Be High. This includes shipping weed between two states that have both legalized marijuana. No exceptions.
Many states have legalized marijuana, at least for medical use; however, others still restrict it.
These states still prohibit marijuana:
- North Carolina
- South Carolina
Conversely, the states that allow both medical and recreational marijuana are:
- New Jersey
- New York
- South Dakota
- Washington DC
The rest of the states allow medical marijuana only.
Can I Buy Weed Online?
Buying weed online is convenient, but barely. Marijuana laws of the physical world stay the same in the digital one. You can’t order marijuana online from out of state.If a company promises to deliver weed anywhere, you can rest assured that it’s not a legitimate operation.
Most shipping companies view marijuana through the lens of federal law and consider it illegal. As a result, they don’t usually work with dispensaries, and delivery to your door is rare. When ordering weed online — assuming you live in a legal state — you typically have to pick it up in person at a set time.
Fortunately, there’s an alternative available in most states — one that can be ordered online and shipped to your door.
Best Weed Alternative: Delta 8 THC
Delta 8 THC’s rapid surge in popularity is well-warranted and shouldn’t be mistaken for superficial hype designed to facilitate quick cash grabs. This novel cannabinoid, discovered through advanced extraction and isolation, is similar enough to THC and serves as a worthy replacement, yet different in two crucial aspects.
Delta 8 THC vs. Delta 9 THC: What’s The Difference?
Delta 8 THC sounds almost identical to delta 9 THC, a.k.a. THC. Delta 8 is its isomer, meaning they have the same chemical formula but different structures. The “8” in delta 8 THC refers to the position of its chemical double bond — on its eight carbon chain. Conversely, delta 9 THC has that double bond on its ninth carbon chain.
This seems insignificant but has significant implications.
The first difference is in their effects. Delta 8 THC is noticeably weaker than delta 9. The potency ratio between delta 8 THC and delta 9 THC is somewhere between 1:2 and 2:3.
This makes delta 8 THC’s effects mellower, gentler, and overall reminiscent of the indica side of the spectrum. It promotes relaxation, sleep, and appetite.
Second, delta 8 is legal federally, and only a handful of states have banned it. This makes it widely available and easy to order online.
Delta 8 significantly reduces the chances of experiencing anxiety, paranoia, and mind race, known as the signature side effects of THC overconsumption. This makes delta 8 THC a tailor-made option for novices looking for a smooth, gentle introduction into the world of marijuana or experienced users who simply prefer something mellower and more benevolent.
Plus, it’s easier to find and reasonably priced. You can likely find it locally or, better yet, order online and have it delivered to your door.
Is Delta 8 THC Legal?
Common sense would say that, as a close relative to THC, delta 8 THC would also be a Controlled I substance. But many marijuana laws have little to do with common sense.
Legal delta 8 THC products come from hemp rather than marijuana. Hemp and its derivatives are federally legal under the 2018 Farm Bill.
However, on August 20, 2020, the DEA introduced a stipulation to the 2018 Farm Bill, called Interim Final Rule, which threatens delta 8 THC’s legal status. The amendment deems all synthetically-derived tetrahydrocannabinol federally illegal. Because of the unique process it takes to pull delta 8 from hemp, this category could encompass delta 8 THC products.
Even so, delta 8 THC is hemp-derived and a naturally-occurring cannabinoid, and therefore legal. Only time will tell how this legal problem will resolve.
States Where Delta 8 THC is Legal
If that wasn’t complicated enough, even a federally legal status doesn’t automatically mean that delta 8 THC products are allowed everywhere. States still have the right to veto federal law, and a few of them have decided to make delta 8 THC illegal.
However, unless a state has expressly stated otherwise, delta 8 is legal.
States Where Delta 8 is Illegal
- North Carolina
- New York
- North Dakota
- Rhode Island
The legal status of delta 8 THC remains unclear in Guam and the Virgin Islands. All other states treat delta 8 THC products as legal.
Best Delta 8 THC Vendors
Hemp-derived CBD products have unfortunately become notorious for their blatant label inaccuracies and contaminants. The hemp industry is under-regulated, and being hemp-derived, the same goes for delta 8 THC products.
However, this has given birth to a form of self-regulation that quality players subscribe to, automatically weeding out the bad ones. This form of regulation is through third-party testing, carried out by an independent lab. The unwritten rule is that if a delta 8 THC company doesn’t subject its products to third-party testing, it either has something to hide or simply doesn’t care about adhering to the industry gold standard.
The following companies subject products to rigorous third-party testing to ensure quality, contaminant-free products.
1. Area 52
There’s certainly nothing wrong with being a generalist and producing marijuana products that span the full spectrum of the cannabis plant. However, when a company has developed niche expertise and reigns supreme, the work feels more like a vocation and carries an added sense of exclusivity.
This is precisely the case with Area 52; the products are almost strictly delta 8 THC, are third-party tested, and have won various awards. Plus, they come with a 30-day money-back guarantee. Moreover, orders process within a single business day, and there’s free priority shipping for orders over $110. On top of that, Area 52’s customer service rating is 97%.
Learn more: Best Delta 8 THC Gummies
Products offered by Area 52
- Delta 8 THC Tincture
- Delta 8 THC Gummies
- Delta 8 THC Vape Cartridges
2. Finest Labs
Finest Labs has a unique offering — terpenes, which enrich not only the delta 8 THC products’ flavor but also the effects. Cannabinoids seem to form special, synergistic relationships, known as the entourage effect, which many cannabis experts believe to be the cause behind different strains’ idiosyncrasies.
Using its terpene knowledge, the team at Finest Labs adds a unique ingredient to its products. The company even gives customers the chance to get creative and come up with custom concoctions.
Learn more: Best Delta 8 Vape Cartridges
Products offered by Finest Labs
- Delta 8 THC Gummies (25 mg, assorted fruity flavors)
- Delta 8 THC Tincture (500 mg, Berry)
- Delta 8 THC Vape Carts (900 mg, Strawberry Cough)
3. Delta Effex
Featured in some of the most popular cannabis-related publications, Delta Effex carries its marijuana and hemp experience into the delta 8 THC and delta 10 THC niche. It has a great variety, including tinctures, flowers, and vape carts.
3Chi uses its intimate understanding of cannabis science to produce products that span the full cannabinoid spectrum and are lab-tested “at the extract and product level.” Between the delta 8 brownies and the pure distillate, you’ll have a hard time choosing.
Skyhio likes to keep things simple. The company produces quality delta 8 THC products, among other cannabinoid extracts, derived from west coast hemp and sold at midwest prices.
Why You Should Shop for Delta 8 THC Online
Shopping for something like delta 8 THC may sound like something you need to do in person so that you can see the product with your own eyes. You have all the tools you need in the comfort of your home to choose the best delta 8 THC products for your needs.
Better yet, online delta 8 THC purchases come with several perks you may not know about.
Online selections are more comprehensive across all product categories, including delta 8 THC. Retail shops simply can’t have in stock everything that the internet offers. You can never have too many options or potential deals and discounts, especially when you’re in a comfortable environment, where you can sift through them carefully.
Checking Brand Quality
In-person purchases often carry a sense of awkwardness and pressure, which can be detrimental when shopping for something as complex and varied as delta 8 THC products.
Online purchases, on the other hand, equal wise decision-making.
You have all the time in the world. No eyes on you. No subtle hints of frustration. No questions are left unasked because of self-consciousness. You can explore products in detail, examine third-party lab reports, and weigh idiosyncrasies against each other. You can even sleep on it and simply go back online the next day without any hassle whatsoever.
There’s something to be said about the unmatched convenience of online purchases. Unlike marijuana products, delta 8 THC creations can be delivered to your door. You save yourself a ton of hassle, time, and even money.
Speaking of saving money…
Online purchases are not just more convenient for the customer but also the business owner. Compared to e-commerce, brick-and-mortar stores just seem like an outdated, inefficient business model with all kinds of unnecessary costs, from rent to electricity, staff, etc.
In other words, running an online store is much cheaper for businesses, which is why they can respectively make their products more affordable for you, too.
Delta 8 THC comes from a plant, and plants start to wither as soon as they’re removed from the soil. While delta 8 THC products certainly have a longer shelf life than plants, they can sometimes sit on brick-and-mortar stores’ shelves for months on end, slowly deteriorating.
The shelf life of delta 8 is about two years, and while it doesn’t go bad, it does lose potency. No one wants that. The fresher the delta 8 is, the more potent it is.
Conversely, with online purchases, the orders and the stock are engaged in a much tighter relationship, allowing vendors to control production much more dynamically. As a result, delta 8 THC products don’t sit around waiting for a buyer — it’s the buyer that comes first.
Delta 8 THC Near Me: Why Choose Online Vendors?
In short, purchasing delta 8 THC online is, perhaps counterintuitively, the more hands-on approach. It gives you the time and space to make an educated decision based on research and lab reports examination. You get cheaper yet fresher products, cherry-picked from a wider selection, delivered to your door.
And, with a bit of foresight and planning ahead, the waiting times for shipping become irrelevant.
Benefits of Delta 8 THC
Delta 8 THC is more than a Plan B for those that don’t have the legal marijuana option. Between its federally legal status, health benefits, and mellow high — but a full-on, well-rounded, high nevertheless — delta 8 THC might just be the whole package.
The side effects of THC have become almost as famous as marijuana’s coveted signature traits at this point. The line between hilariously wild thoughts on one side and paranoia and anxiety on the other is sometimes just a puff or two thick.
Being significantly less potent, delta 8 THC makes the line between fun effects and side effects much harder to cross. Better yet, with its effects falling on the Indica side of the spectrum, delta 8 THC is more relaxing by default, making anxiety and paranoia a particularly remote possibility.
But make no mistake, delta 8 THC is intoxicating, unlike CBD, where no amount will send you to that wondrous dimension we all know and love. Delta 8 THC will take you there, making the journey smooth and gentle.
There are other benefits, too.
Delta 8 THC’s benefits to sleep are a natural continuation of the previous point. This cannabinoid’s mellower, Indica-esque nature causes fun and pleasantly sedated relaxation — a seamless prelude to deep, peaceful sleep. This is not always the case with marijuana, especially Sativa strains, which can overstimulate the brain, be it in a fun way, and keep it from shutting down.
One of the overlooked benefits of marijuana is its antiemetic activity, which is one way it helps chemotherapy patients. Delta 8 THC seems to carry this antiemetic power, too.
THC is known for unleashing insatiable cravings for food, known as the munchies. It seems like delta 8 THC is actually more potent than its more famous isomer in that particular regard. This is great news for people who struggle with a loss of appetite, like chemotherapy patients; however, it’s not so great for those who have a hard time curbing theirs.
THC is a known analgesic at this point; its pain-relieving activity comes from its affinity for the CB1 receptors, located in the brain and central nervous system, which regulate pain. The same goes for delta 8.
Since delta 8 THC interacts similarly, it’s safe to say that pain relief must be in its wheelhouse.
Delta 8 THC’s effects last for quite a while — according to anecdotal evidence, they can linger for up to 5 hours. Several factors come into play to determine the exact length, including diet, individual physiology, and delivery method.
For prolonged, more profound highs, delta 8 THC edibles are the way to go. They’re metabolized in the gut and liver (first-pass metabolism), which reduces bioavailability and increases their time of onset. However, on the plus side for those with a penchant for a little mental adventure, the effects carry psychedelic shades due to the first-pass metabolism, as it converts delta 8 THC into 11-hydroxy-THC.
Key Takeaways: Where’s the Best Place to Buy Weed Online in 2021?
The best, and in fact the only place to buy weed online, is in a state that allows recreational or medicinal marijuana. The same goes for buying weed in person. Conversely, ordering weed online from out of state is strictly illegal because its delivery entails carrying it across state borders, which goes against federal law.
But fortunately, in many states, people who can’t buy marijuana legally have another option — delta 8 THC. An isomer of THC, delta 8 THC is less potent and mellower by nature but is every bit as fun. It carries a very low risk of side effects like paranoia and anxiety while still packing enough of a punch to send you into that dreamy altered state of mind.
Last but certainly not least, unlike THC, delta 8 THC is federally legal. With all that in mind, the cannabinoid makes for a worthy marijuana replacement, if not even a better option altogether.
Delta 8 THC’s federally legal status means you can order it online even from out of state (as long as your state allows it). You can take advantage of the third-party tested products of vetted delta 8 THC companies like Area 52 and Finest Labs. These products serve as a gentle introduction to the world of marijuana for rookies, as well as a fresh alternative for experienced users looking to spice things up.