How Long Does Delta 8 Take to Kick in Across Product Types?

A close up of a clock with its hand resembling a cannabis flower.

Delta 8 THC is a relatively new cannabinoid known for its milder version of Delta 9 THC’s euphoric effects.  It’s also available on shelves in multiple product forms—gummies, tinctures, vapes, creams, etc. 

Since Delta 8 products were only recently popularized, and its many forms have varying onset of effects, it’s understandable why people would ask questions like “How long does Delta 8 take to kick in?”

In this article, learn about the general activation period across varying Delta 8 product types, the factors that speed up the process, tips for managing the onset, how long the effects will last, and more.  

  • Delta 8 typically kicks in about 15 to 90 minutes after last consumption. 
  • Delta 8 consumed through vaping and smoking has the quickest onset. In contrast, gummies have a longer reaction time, taking up to 90 minutes to show their effects. 
  • While inhalants provide a rapid onset, the effects of Delta 8 gummies are known to linger, offering a longer-lasting experience. 
  • The Delta 8 activation period differs for every individual. Several factors influence it, such as product type, dosage, and individual differences.

How Long Does Delta 8 Take to Kick in Generally?

In general, the quickest onset of Delta 8 effects starts at 15 minutes, which can be achieved by smoking Delta 8-rich flowers or vaping a Delta 8-formulated e-liquid. Meanwhile, the longest activation period can take 90 minutes through edibles or gummies. 

Although Delta 8 has a recognized universal onset, the activation period will still vary based on several factors such as tolerance, dosage, method of consumption, metabolic rate, etc. Once you feel the effects kick in, Delta 8’s high can last as long as eight hours or more, depending on the consumer’s dosage and unique body chemistry. 

Onset Times Across Different Delta 8 Product Types

Gummies and hemp flowers laying on top of a black cover.

As mentioned, consumption methods greatly influence how long Delta 8 kicks in and the duration of when it will wear off. To get a general idea of how fast Delta 8 kicks in when taken in various forms, here’s a breakdown:

Delta 8 THC Edibles & Gummies

There are two types of existing Delta 8 edibles in the market—digested and dissolving edibles

Digested edibles are Delta 8-infused snacks such as cookies, brownies, etc. They go through the whole digestive process because they’re eaten, like how food is normally consumed. For these types of Delta 8 edibles, the estimated onset is one to two hours. However, the effects last longer (up to eight hours) than any method of Delta 8 consumption. 

The second type of Delta 8 edible is the dissolving edible, which comes in candies, chewables, gummies, and other sticky, sugary Delta 8 treats. Absorbed through the mouth, dissolving Delta 8 edibles have roughly the same onset as digestible edibles, but their effects are much quicker, at one to two hours. 

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Delta 8 THC Inhalants 

Inhalants are categorized into two sets: Delta 8 vapes and Delta 8 cannabis flowers. Since both are inhaled, there isn’t much difference in their onsets which are estimated at 10 to 15 minutes. What makes them distinct from one another lies in strength or bioavailability. Vaping Delta 8 offers stronger effects over smoking flowers. 

According to a small study conducted by Johns Hopkins Medicine researchers, 10 minutes after subjects smoked and vaped Delta 8, THC levels reached an average of 7.5 nanograms per milliliter among vapers, while only 3.8 nanograms of THC per milliliter were found in smokers. 

Delta 8 inhalants may have the fastest onset but they also have the quickest dissipation time, lasting only three to five hours. This is because the body metabolizes substances faster through inhalation. 

Delta 8 THC Tinctures

Tinctures or oils infused with Delta 8 are concentrated liquids administered sublingually. During sublingual administration, Delta 8 tincture drops are placed under the tongue to allow the mucous membranes to absorb the substance. 

Because the blood vessels in the mucous membranes directly connect to the bloodstream, Delta 8 effects can be felt in as little as 30 minutes or sometimes less. Like smokables, the effects can last up to three to five hours. 

Delta 8 THC Topicals

Topicals in the form of creams, lotions, and gels won’t generally get you high, but you should feel their intended effects on the application area in around 30 minutes or less. 

Factors Affecting Onset Time

Delta 8 tincture and a cannabis leaf side by side
Cannabis Products

Take a look at the several factors affecting the onset times of various Delta 8 THC products. 

Method of Consumption

How you consume Delta 8 products is one of the major factors dictating the onset of Delta 8 effects. This is because although the bloodstream is the point of arrival for Delta 8 metabolites, each method of consumption processes the compound differently. For example, edibles are processed through the long and tedious digestive system, while smokables are metabolized quickly through the respiratory system. 

Now that you know the nature of onsets across various Delta 8 products, you can appropriately choose which product is ideal for a situation or environment. So, if you’re at home, you know it will not be a problem if the quick onset of Delta 8 vapes catches you off guard. 

Dosage & Potency

Potency and dosage are two different terms often confused as interchangeable words. Potency refers to the substance’s strength, while dosage means the amount of substance. It’s important to differentiate these two terms from one another as both play different roles in the activation period of Delta 8. 

A large dose of Delta 8 doesn’t necessarily mean a faster onset. Sometimes, even if you take huge amounts of Delta 8, if the potency is low, the onset may be delayed, or worse, there will be no effects altogether. 

For many users, a high potency and low dose is the ideal standard for taking Delta 8 because they promote bioavailability efficiency.  

Individual Differences

The consumer’s unique physicality is another crucial factor in determining the onset of Delta 8 effects. Each person, at different times, is endowed with a unique metabolism, body composition, cannabis tolerance, medical conditions, etc. These differences contribute to the variations of processing Delta 8 within individuals. Hence, onsets vary too. 

  • Metabolism – The faster the metabolism, the more rapid the onset.
  • Tolerance to substance – The lower the tolerance to Delta 8, the faster the onset is felt.
  • Weight – The more body fat the consumer has, the longer the onset. 
  • Overall health status – The healthier the being, the more predictable the onset will be. 

Empty Stomach

Consuming Delta 8 with an empty stomach encourages faster Delta 8 onset. This is especially true for Delta 8 edibles, as there is less food in the stomach to digest, leading to a faster product absorption rate. 

Beginners and those who like less intense Delta 8 effects must cushion or slow down the compound’s effects by eating beforehand. The food will slow down the effects of Delta 8, lessening your risk of developing side effects.

Tips for Managing Onset Time

Clock laying over a bed of grass

Now that you know the factor that speeds up and slows down the onset of Delta 8 effects, it’s time to learn how to control the onset time through the factors mentioned. 

Starting With a Low Dose

If this is your first time introducing cannabinoids like Delta 8 to your system, it’s best to start with the lowest dose, regardless of potency. Delta’s standard beginner dose is 5-10 mg of Delta 8 daily. Once your body gets used to the product, you may start gradually increasing the dosage. 

Each Delta 8 product requires different methods of dosage adjustment. For example, Delta 8 edibles can be cut into quarters or halves, while vape dosages are controlled by doing one to two puffs and observing the effects before vaping another small draw. 

Understanding Your Tolerance Level

Tolerance to Delta 8 refers to the reduced response to the compound after repeated exposure for a long time. As everyone’s body chemistry is different, it’s also possible to have a default tolerance to Delta 8, even if it’s your first time. Overall, the higher the tolerance, the more delayed the onset. 

In general, beginners are predisposed to have low or zero tolerance for Delta 8. So, if you are one, start with a tester (lowest possible dose) and wait for the effects to unfold. Increase dosage in increments until you reach a comfortable point where the onset period becomes predictable or systemic. 

Adjusting the Dosage According to Your Needs

As you become more familiar with how and when your body reacts to Delta 8, it’s time to fine-tune your dosage to only address your current needs and not go beyond what you can’t handle. At the same time, this method also helps you control the Delta 8 onset.

🔍 Dig Further

Microdosing is the practice of consistently taking small, controlled amounts of a substance. The idea is to get the most out of the dosage without overdoing it. With microdosing, you’re least likely to develop tolerance, and you’re protecting yourself from unnecessary product volumes.

Practicing Patience

You know now that there is no such thing as “absolute onset” for hemp products like Delta 8. Delayed reactions can happen because different product forms have varying activation periods. Thus, to prevent accidentally overwhelming your system, try not to stack one dose to another just because you’re not feeling the effects yet. 

How to Tell When the Delta 8 Effects Are Starting to Wear Off?

It’s easy to tell when Delta 8 effects are starting to wear off. You’ll notice an initial decrease in the symptoms. For others, the diminishing effects could be a sense of relaxation or the lessening of heightened sensory perceptions. For most, it means coming back to a normal cognitive state. 

If you want a shorter lasting period of effects, try vaping or smoking Delta 8 instead of consuming edibles.  

How Strong is Delta 8?

Delta 8’s strength is best described by comparing it with Delta 9’s. Delta 8 THC gives feelings of euphoria similar to Delta 9, but it is milder in comparison. Research suggests that Delta is less likely to attach to the endocannabinoid’s CB1 receptors, lessening its psychoactive compound strength.

Users who desire a milder type of psychoactive effects may turn to Delta 8. 

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Final Thoughts

Delta 8 can be an enjoyable cannabinoid to consume. Its kick-in time is fairly predictable, ranging from 15 to 90 minutes, depending on the product type. Other variables influencing onset time are dosage, unique body chemistry, and whether you’ve eaten beforehand. 

Knowing how different factors affect Delta 8’s activation period helps you manage the onset time according to your preference. It also helps if you purchase Delta 8 products only from brands known to offer high-quality cannabis, like The Hemp Doctor


Does Delta 8 take forever to kick in?

No. Delta 8 edibles are known to kick the longest by 90 minutes while smoking and vaping Delta 8 is the fastest at 15 minutes. 

How can the onset time of Delta 8 be sped up?

There are several ways to speed up Delta 8’s kick-in process. For example, try to have a light meal before consuming Delta edibles. Amping up the dosage works well across all types of Delta 8 products to speed up the compound’s activation period. 

How fast do you build a tolerance to Delta 8?

The chronic and heavy use of Delta 8 leads to a tolerance build-up after a few days to a week. 

How can I undo my tolerance for Delta 8?

Abstaining is key for resetting your tolerance for Delta 8. Slowly reducing your THC intake also helps. 

How to properly dose Delta 8?

Properly dosing Delta 8 is highly personalized. You must consider your weight, desired effects, tolerance, and unique body chemistry to determine a proper dose. 

What are the Delta 8 side effects the next day?

Each person’s experience of the morning after effects of Delta 8 is different. However, small to medium amounts of Delta 8 shouldn’t give off hangover-like effects in the morning. 

How to clear Delta 8 from your system?

Hydration and abstaining temporarily will help clear out Delta 8 from your system.