THCo vs. Delta 8

Feb 22, 2024

A hand holds a Cannabis Kush plant against a green background

There always seem to be new rare cannabinoid arrivals on the hemp-derived products scene. One such new character is THCo. However, like many other cannabinoids, THCo has quickly created a buzz and is steadily growing in popularity.

But what is the fuss really all about? And why are people comparing THCo with Delta 8?

In this article, we take an in-depth look at both cannabinoids and share some insight into the similarities and differences between them — from their chemical makeup to their effects, potency, legality, and more.

Key Takeaways

  • THCo, also known as THCo acetate, is a psychoactive cannabinoid synthesized from other hemp plant by-products through acetylation. Unlike Delta 8 THC, THCo does not occur naturally in hemp or cannabis plants. Some experts believe that THCo is three times more potent than regular THC.
  • THCo is made via a process of acetylation, which involves extracting THC (usually Delta 8 THC) from hemp plants and mixing them with acetic anhydride. The process is highly flammable and dangerous to carry out at home, so it should not be attempted without proper training, certifications, and equipment.
  • While Delta 8 is available and legal in a lot of states, THCo is considered a Schedule I substance and is federally illegal.

What is THCo?

THCo, which may also be referred to as THC acetate, is a cannabinoid with psychoactive and euphoric effects on the body. 

However, unlike most of the other cannabinoids we are used to, THCo is unique because it does not occur naturally in hemp or cannabis plants. Instead, it is synthesized from other hemp-plant by-products through a process called acetylation. 

Interestingly, most experts generally believe that THCo has powerful psychoactive properties, with some claiming that it is three times more potent than regular THC.

How is THCo Made?

THCo is made via a process of acetylation. This process involves the extraction of THC (typically Delta 8 THC) from hemp or cannabis plants and mixing them with acetic anhydride - a colorless liquid used in the production of plastic, explosives, pharmaceuticals, and dyes.

It is important to note, however, that experts consider the process of making THCo too dangerous to be carried out at home as it involves highly flammable and volatile chemicals.

Therefore, you should not try to make THCo on your own without proper training, certifications, and relevant equipment.

What are the Effects of THCo?

As we stated earlier, THCo is deemed to be three times more powerful than THC. Therefore, the effects obtained from it are usually intensely euphoric and psychedelic. 

Some users of this cannabinoid refer to it as the "spiritual cannabinoid" or the "psychedelic cannabinoid" because of the deep state of euphoria that arises from taking it. 

Some of the common effects of taking THCo include the following:

  • Intense relaxation 
  • Heightened euphoria
  • Hallucinations
  • Altered perception 

What are the Benefits of THCo?

Apart from the psychoactive effects that accompany THCo, there are also potential benefits that this cannabinoid provides to the body. They include: 

Relaxation and Ease of Body Tension 

THCo may be help users relax after a stressful day or under pressure. This is because the cannabinoid produces a feeling of contentment and satisfaction in users that may help relieve them of tension and soothe the mind. 

Improved Mood

People feeling sad may find THCo as an aid to help them leave emotional low points. The cannabinoid's effects may help take the mind off worry, sadness, and sad thoughts. It may even inspire moments of deep reflection that produce joy. 

Increased Appetite

Users of THCo typically report a boost in appetite after taking the cannabinoid. Therefore, cannabinoids may be a solution for individuals struggling to eat well. 

Improved Creativity

One of the feelings that typically accompanies THCo is a sense of brighter colors and altered perception. Therefore, depending on the dose, THCo may facilitate intense moments of creativity, especially among artists and individuals who already do a lot of creative work. 

Pain Relief 

Pain relief is a common benefit of THC that is typically reported among users. Therefore, it may be the case that THCo, which is similar to THC, also provides relief to users.

The cannabinoid interacts with the endocannabinoid system in the body and may facilitate relief from certain kinds of pain, depending on the dosage. 

Healthier Sleep 

Lastly, THCo may help users sleep better if taken in the proper dosage and at appropriate times before bed. The feelings of relaxation and joy may make sleep more restful for users of this cannabinoid. 

It is important to note that the scientific evidence on the effects of THCo is minimal. Therefore, the benefits of the cannabinoid are obtained from anecdotal evidence, that is, accounts from users.

Potential Side Effects of THCo

Like any other product, THCo is not without some potential side effects, especially in cases of much higher doses. Also, people with lower tolerance levels may experience side effects if they consume larger amounts.

However, the good news is the potential side effects of THCo are typically non-life threatening and will subside once sufficient time passes.

Here are some of the potential side effects of taking this cannabinoid:

  • Lethargy 
  • Dizziness 
  • Nausea
  • Grogginess 
  • Panic attacks
  • Paranoia

To reduce the chances of side effects, we generally recommend that users start at the lowest doses possible before slowly working their way up to higher amounts of the cannabinoid.

Best Way to Take THCo

The best way to take THCo differs from person to person and preference to preference. However, because of how powerful it is, we recommend starting from the smaller dosages, especially if you are a beginner. 

A general recommendation is that beginners use between 3 and 10mg at once, while more experienced persons can use 25mg and above.

Still on the best way to take THCo, here are some of the ways consumers choose to enjoy THCo:


Dabbing is a popular method of consuming cannabis concentrates, which involves heating a small amount of the concentrate on a hot surface and inhaling the vapor through a dab rig.

This method can provide a quick and potent effect but requires specialized equipment and can be intimidating for beginners.


Vaping is another popular method of consuming cannabis concentrates, which involves heating the concentrate in a vaporizer and inhaling the vapor.

Vaping can provide a smoother and more discreet experience compared to dabbing and can be done with a variety of different vaporizers.


THCo can also be added to food or beverages to create Edibles, such as gummies and brownies, which can provide a longer-lasting and more gradual effect compared to other methods.

However, it's important to be cautious with dosing when consuming edibles, as the effects can be delayed and more intense.

What is Delta 8?

Delta 8 is a psychoactive cannabinoid that is found in hemp and cannabis plants in trace amounts. These cannabinoids are generally deemed less potent than other naturally occurring cannabinoids like Delta 9 and Delta 11

Furthermore, because it is found in trace amounts, Delta 8 THC may be synthetically produced. 

How is Delta 8 Made?

Delta 8 THC is naturally occurring in hemp and cannabis plants; therefore, ordinarily, extracting it from plants will be all there is to make it. 

However, because it occurs in limited amounts, Delta 8 may also be synthetically produced. The synthetic making of Delta 8 is done via a conversion process where CBD or Delta 9 is converted into Delta 8. 

Note that it is possible to convert CBD and Delta 9 into Delta 8 because they have a similar chemical structure to Delta 8.

Therefore, manufacturers simply need to extract CBD or Delta 9 and use a chemical process, such as adding hexane to Delta 9 to convert it to Delta 8. 

However, Delta 8 may not be as strong as HHC, THCo, or other cannabinoids.

What are the Effects of Delta 8?

Delta 8 THC, like other cannabinoids, has a psychoactive effect on the body. However, studies have shown that the potency of its psychoactive effects is lesser than Delta 9 and some other cannabinoids. This has earned Delta 8 the tag of "nicer sibling." 

Therefore, some of the common effects of Delta 8 THC include the following:

  • Relaxation 
  • Euphoria
  • Stress relief 

What are the Benefits of Delta 8?

Delta 8 THC has been linked with a couple of health benefits. They include:

Pain Management 

Studies suggest that Delta 8 THC may be useful in helping users deal with pain, just like Delta 9 THC. Many users also typically report relief from different kinds of pain when they take Delta 8.

As a result, it may not be uncommon to see users take Delta 8 based on medical recommendations.

Calms the Mind 

Taking Delta 8 causes a sense of relaxation, which may help users deal with anxious minds. Therefore, users may use Delta 8 when they feel pressured or overly worried about something. 

Improved Appetite 

Users of Delta 8 typically report improved appetite after taking the cannabinoid. This means it may help boost food consumption in users with a problem eating. 

Creativity Boost

Delta 8 may trigger a feeling of euphoria and relaxation that may be great for creativity under certain circumstances.

This is further enhanced because Delta 8's "high" is mellow, so it will be easy for users to maintain enough awareness to create even after taking the cannabinoid.

Reduces Nausea 

Delta 8 THC has been reported to have potential nausea-reducing effects, which may make it a beneficial option for those who experience nausea as a symptom of certain medical conditions or treatments. 

Potential Side Effects of Delta 8

Despite the fact that the high gotten from Delta 8 is typically "mellow," there are a couple of side effects that may still accompany taking it.

Some of them include:

  • Memory loss
  • Slow reaction time
  • Dry mouth
  • Red eyes
  • Rapid heart rate 
  • Trouble focusing and coordinating

It is important to note that these side effects are typically temporary and result from taking more Delta 8 than the body can tolerate. Therefore, it is usually best to start from smaller doses and work your way up slowly.

Best Way to Take Delta 8

A woman standing outdoors exhales smoke, visibly enjoying the moment

There are generally several ways you can enjoy Delta 8, depending on your preferences and tolerance levels. Here are some top options for you:


Delta 8 THC can be inhaled through a vaporizer, which heats up the concentrate or flower and creates a vapor that can be inhaled.

This method provides fast-acting effects and can be a good option for those who prefer the act of smoking. Delta 8 carts are great options here.


Another option for consuming Delta 8 is to infuse it into food or beverages to create edibles, which can be a good option for those who prefer a longer-lasting and more gradual effect.

However, it's important to be cautious with dosing when consuming edibles, as the effects can be delayed and more intense.


Delta 8 THC can be taken sublingually, which involves placing a tincture or oil under the tongue and allowing it to be absorbed into the bloodstream.

This method provides fast-acting effects and can be a good option for those who prefer not to inhale or consume edibles.


You can also administer Delta 8 topically to the skin in the form of creams or balms, which can provide localized relief for pain or inflammation.

THCo vs. Delta 8: Effects

When it comes to their effect on the body, both cannabinoids are quite different. 

On the one hand, THCo has a strong and intense psychoactive effect on the body that is estimated to be three times the effect of regular THC. Therefore, taking it causes hallucinations, intense euphoria, and body high, amongst other things.

On the other hand, Delta 8 THC has a more mellow psychoactive effect on the body. Therefore, users typically don't go to it for a deep euphoric experience. Taking it typically causes stress relief and relaxation.

THCo vs. Delta 8: Potency

THCo is more potent and stronger than Delta 8. Anecdotal evidence shows that THCo produces a far more potent high than you get from Delta 8 THC. 

THCo vs. Delta 8: Legality

On legality, both cannabinoids are subject to varying laws that govern different states. However, both may be legal at the federal level due to the federal Farm Bill. 

On the one hand, Delta 8 is technically legal at the federal level because of the Farm Bill of 2018, which makes all hemp-derived products that have 0.3% THC or less by dry weight legal. 

However, since THCo does not naturally occur in hemp, there are arguments on whether THCo falls under this Farm Bill provision even if it contains less than 0.3% THC by dry weight.

In fact, because of this, the DEA has deemed THCo a controlled substance and illegal at the federal level.

THCo vs. Delta 8: Cost

At the moment, THCo is more pricey than Delta 8, largely because it is a new and trendy product that may be more difficult to procure. In contrast, Delta 8 is more readily available.

Where to Buy Delta 8 Online

Generally, it is best to shop your Delta 8 and other hemp-derived products from reputable manufacturers that uphold high manufacturing standards and adhere to legal regulations, like us!

At Mellow Fellow, we’re proud to offer an ample selection of Delta 8 products like vape cartridges, disposables, edibles, and gel capsules

Bag of Mellow Fellow's Blue Razz Delta 8 gummies.

For those seeking a more diverse experience, our blended cannabinoid products are a perfect choice. These blends combine Delta 8 THC with other cannabinoids and are available in vape carts, disposables, edibles, and prerolls, crafted to suit every preference.

Mellow Fellow's Dream Sunset Sherbet disposable vape.

Each product is meticulously formulated and rigorously lab-tested, ensuring the highest standards of quality and safety.

Whether you're a first-time user or a seasoned enthusiast, Mellow Fellow is committed to providing you with top-tier, safe, and enjoyable Delta 8 products.

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