What’s the Difference Between THCO and HHC?

As the demand for hemp grows as a result of the identification of new psychoactive cannabinoids, you might have noticed some odd names that contain your favorite abbreviation-THC.

Delta-8, delta-10, THC-O, and HHC are different versions of the THC molecule.

They have a similar molecular structure to delta-9 THC, but subtle differences in their molecular bonding make them interact differently with cannabinoid receptors.

While delta-8 and delta-9 THC are past their prime attention time, new compounds are entering the cannabis scene — THC-O and HHC.

We’ll look at the differences between THC-O and HHC, compare their potency, health benefits, safety profiles, and product types.

Read on to meet the new members of the THC family.


  • THC-O is a semi-synthetic cannabinoid derived from hemp. It’s about 300% stronger than delta-9 THC.
  • HHC is the hydrogenated form of THC, containing around 80% of its potency and boasting a longer shelf-life thanks to its more stable structure.
  • HHC is considered natural, while THC-O is made using a conversion process from CBD to delta-9 THC and adding acetic anhydride to its structure.
  • THC-O produces stronger effects than HHC. They’re centered around the mental side and can lead to a spiritual experience on the verge of hallucinations in high doses.
  • HHC’s effects are more focused on the body and come with a lower risk of anxiety and paranoia.
  • THC-O and HHC are most commonly used in their concentrated form, e.g., dabs, oils, and vape carts.
  • Both compounds are theoretically legal at the federal level as long as the final product contains 0.3% or less delta-9 THC


The Plant of Hundreds of Compounds: Cannabis

Cannabis has historically been utilized for its psychotropic effects in recreational use, religious ceremonies, and medicinal. It is one of the earliest crops utilized by humans, having been domesticated roughly 12,000 years ago in China.

The medicinal profile and potential applications of a particular strain and product are influenced by the ratio between the various cannabinoids. Cannabis is used by people to treat a variety of conditions, including anxiety, stress, pain, migraines, inflammation, hunger issues, sleeplessness, and more.

However, until recently, consumers have only been aware of one THC – delta-9.

Two years ago, we could witness a major breakthrough in extraction methods that allowed hemp manufacturers to extract usable quantities of other isomers of THC from hemp.

We’ve already had delta-7, delta-8, and delta-10 THC.

2022 was the year that put two other THCs in the spotlight — THC-O and HHC.

Although similar on the surface, these compounds offer slightly different effects and fit different types of users.

Let’s start with THC-O.

What is THC-O?

Different cannabinoids can be extracted using various techniques. Some of them, like delta-9 THC, CBD, or CBG, are present in the plant naturally, and producers may simply extract significant amounts of them.

Other cannabinoids are more difficult to obtain and require a special conversion process from one of the major compounds in hemp.

That’s how THC-O is produced.

THC-O acetate is an extremely potent analog of delta-9 THC. Its potency has been measured at around 300% higher, indicating intense psychoactive effects.

The potency of THC-O derives from its original purpose. The U.S. military discovered the compound in 1940, experimenting with natural, non-lethal drugs to incapacitate enemies.

Despite its synthetic nature, THC-O has a similar structure to delta-9 THC.

What is HHC?

HHC stands for hexahydrocannabinol. It’s a hydrogenated version of THC.

If hydrogenation creates associations with margarine in your mind, you’re on the right track.

The manufacturing process of HHC follows similar steps to how hydrogenated fats are made — by adding a hydrogen atom to delta-9 THC.

The effects of THC-O and HHC, their strength, and any advantages are all quite unclear.

Since both substances are THC derivatives, their primary effects are identical. THC-O and HHC, however, both have special qualities of their own.

Let’s begin by comparing each one’s potency.

What’s the Potency of THC-O Like?

THC-O is, as was already mentioned, three times more potent than delta-9 THC. If you smoke marijuana frequently and get high easily, you should use THC-O with the utmost caution.

Start with a lower dose and increase it gradually until the psychedelic effects are pleasurable but not overpowering.

If you use THC-O excessively, you could develop short-term memory loss, heightened anxiety, paranoia, a racing heart, cold sweats, confusion, and dizziness.

They are similar to the adverse effects of delta-9, but because of the higher potency, they can become considerably worse.

To cut a long story short, THC-O is superior to marijuana’s psychoactive properties. If you can handle high THC doses, THC-O products can be a lot of fun because they give you the munchies, euphoria, calm, and stir your imagination.

Make sure to wait at least 30 minutes before taking another dose of THC-O because the effects start to take effect after a short delay. When the effects are at their strongest, you can assess how you’re feeling and decide whether you’re satisfied with your current intake or if more should be added.

What About HHC Potency?

HHC has effects that are remarkably similar to those brought on by delta-9 THC. HHC, on the other hand, is less strong than delta-9 than THC-O. It retains about 80% of the efficacy of delta-9.

The way that THC-O and HHC affect the body and brain is another difference between them. While THC gives you more of a physical buzz that leaves you feeling peaceful and relaxed — but not stoned — THC-O is more physically stimulating and has the ability to excite the mind. HHC has psychological effects that are more upbeat and inspiring, especially in modest doses.

What’s the Difference Between


The effects of THC-O and HHC, their strength, and any advantages are all quite unclear.

Since both substances are THC derivatives, their primary effects are identical. THC-O and HHC, however, both have special qualities of their own.

Let’s begin by comparing each one’s potency.

Other Differences Between THC-O and HHC

Now that we’ve covered the major difference between THC-O and HHC let’s cover the less talked-about details.

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