When Will I Feel it? Why Cannabis Ingestion Methods Matter

As the cannabis market continues to grow we keep finding ways to enjoy our favorite herb. But before you try that fancy cannabis olive oil (yes that’s a thing!), it’s best to understand the effects of each product and how long you can expect to wait for that nice, euphoric high.  

Why Do Different Cannabis Ingestion Methods Take Longer than Others to feel the thc?

When someone enjoys cannabis – whether it’s smoking a joint, or eating an edible – THC (Tetra Hydra Cannabidiol) enters the body and eventually makes its way to the bloodstream. Once in the bloodstream, THC interacts with the brain and creates the high feeling that has made cannabis so popular and therapeutic throughout history. Because THC can be ingested in many different forms, each ingestion method takes a different length of time to reach the bloodstream and nervous system. Because of this, different methods of ingestion take longer to get you high than others.

Vape Cartridge by Rove

Vape Cartridge by Rove

Smoking Cannabis

Smoking cannabis is the most classic and effective way to consume cannabis. Smoking – or vaping cannabis – is done by igniting cannabis flower and inhaling THC-rich smoke. Once inhaled, the THC is almost instantly absorbed into the bloodstream through the millions of alveoli lining the lungs.

Smoking remains the quickest way to get high and the most traditional. Typically, the effects are instant, and the high usually lasts between 90 - 120 minutes.


Edibles are an excellent way to enjoy THC and give you a chance to experience a high that is both different and longer lasting than one from smoking or vaping. Edibles are made with THC-concentrated butter or coconut oil and can be made into chocolates, gummies, hard candies, etc. – really, the possibilities are endless. Edibles take between 30 – 90 minutes to take effect, depending upon the concentration and the amount you eat. The high from an edible can also last between 4 – 6 hours and you usually peak between hours 2 – 4.

Remember to be careful when consuming edibles, because the physical high is delayed. This delay can cause people to over consume because they think that the edible isn’t working, when in reality the effects just haven’t set in yet.

Infused Pop Corn by Pop-Up Potcorn

Infused Pop Corn by Pop-Up Potcorn



THC tinctures are typically alcohol or oil-based cannabis extracts, and are a great way for beginners to try cannabis for the first time. Tinctures also give more seasoned cannabis enthusiasts a more precise method of dosing THC and are incredibly easy to incorporate into a micro-dosing schedule.

Checkout our article on how to build your own cannabis micro-dosing routine.

When taking a THC tincture sublingually (dropped under the tongue) expect to feel the effects in 15-30 minutes and to reach your peak high around 90 minutes after ingestion. If you simply drink the tincture dosage, expect a slower developing high that more closely resembles edibles.

THC Capsules by ABX

THC Capsules by ABX


THC capsules are clear pills that look like fish oil pills or gel cap vitamins that contain anywhere between 10 – 150 mg of concentrated THC. The gelatin-based capsules contain either THC oil or powdered THC and each pill can contain a number of healthy cannabinoids including CBD. If discreet dosing is important to you, then THC capsules are an incredible option for medicating on the DL.

Cannabis capsules are best swallowed with water, like any other oral vitamin or oral supplement. Capsules take about 30 minutes to kick in – as soon as the outer shell of the capsule has dissolved and absorbed into the walls of the digestive system. The high form capsules lasts between 2 – 4 hours, and you’ll feel your peak around the 90 minute mark.

Visit Mission Cannabis in San Francisco

If you have any question about cannabis, CBD products, or marijuana in general, we hope you visit our dispensary! Our team is happy to answer any questions about cannabis that you may have. Together, we can help find the right products for you so that you can enjoy cannabis more thoroughly, and safely.

Alexa Jesse

My name is Alexa and I am a New York native that moved to San Francisco, California in October of 2015. Gypsy Universe is a reflection of my personal wellness and creative journey, inspired by the loss of my best friend and my own near death experience.  I have been a closet singer my whole life and I finally decided to stop dreaming and start living. I am a singer, a writer, a traveler, a sister, a lover, and a planet earth activist. I am also a certified Health Coach and Pilates instructor. Follow my journey for travel tips, plant-based lifestyle how-to's, original music and more!