7 Reasons Why You Aren’t Getting High From Weed

why you arent getting high

So, you’ve been smoking weed but not getting high. Don’t worry – you’re certainly not the first. There are several reasons why someone might not get high and I’m going to cover all the ones I know of in the article.

Once you’ve read the article let me know what you think in the comment section below. If you know any reason’s or remedies I didn’t mention please let us all know.

1. First-Timers

If it’s your first time smoking then it is certainly possible to not get high. In fact, it takes some people multiple times to get the effect. I personally didn’t feel high until my 3rd time smoking. If you’re new to smoking then you sometimes just have to give it a little bit of time. Why does this occur? Well, there are several theories:

  1. It’s possible that you aren’t smoking correctly since you’re new to this. For this reason, make sure you read the rest of the article. Not inhaling properly is a common reason, and it’s covered in the next section. If everything else in this article aligns correctly then it’s possible it could be one of these other theories for first-timers not getting high.
  2. Weed contains cannabinoids that react with cannabinoid receptors throughout out brains and the rest of our bodies for that matter. Our bodies naturally produce cannabinoids but at very low levels. Some believe that it takes a few times of cannabis use in order to fully activate your receptors.
  3. Lastly, it could be more of a psychological hindrance. That is, you may be overthinking the process and/or anxious about the situation which is causing you to have a mental block on the experience. Just try to relax and enjoy it.

2. Not Inhaling Properly

If you’re smoking or vaping weed then inhaling is absolutely crucial to get the effects. At first, inhaling is going to be a bit uncomfortable for new smokers, but it gets easier over time. Just start off with really small hits. It’s better to properly inhale a small hit than to take a big hit that goes to waste with improper technique.

The simple explanation is to get smoke in your mouth then take a slow deep breath. Remember: you’re inhaling smoke into your lungs – not swallowing it into your stomach. If your stomach hurts or you burp up smoke then you likely swallowed the smoke instead of inhaling it.

You do not have to hold it in like many people think. This is a myth. Once it’s inhaled into your lungs your good to go ahead an exhale. Holding for an extra 5-10 second is going to have little to no impact on your experience.

If the simple explanation didn’t quite do it for you then don’t worry. I have already written out a more detailed explanation of inhaling in one of my other articles which you can check out by clicking here.

3. Bad Weed Quality

The quality of your weed is going to play a major role in your ability to get high. Don’t get me wrong – you can still get high from lesser weed. You just have to smoke more of it. This is talked about in a bit more detail in the next section.

So, how do you know if the quality of your weed is good or not? If you’re new to this it’s best to rely on a friend who is a bit more experience to help you procure your herb. I do realize, however, this is not always possible so here are a few quick things that anyone can use to help identify quality:

  • Does it have seeds? You may get a random seed every now and then with good weed but if you start finding lots of seeds it’s not going to be great quality. Seeds occur when male plants are not removed from the growing area. This shows the plants were not strictly cared for. Also, it takes energy and nutrients from the plant to grow seeds, so anytime you see a seed it’s lost potential for the herb.
  • Look for crystally structures around the herb. Do you see little white crystal looking things? Those are trichomes and they contain THC and other cannabinoids so they’re a good sign of weed quality.
  • Is it sticky? Not all good weed is super sticky but a high resin content is usually a good sign when the weed sticks to your fingers.
  • Smell. Break open a bud and give it a nice big sniff. Different strains will have different small ranging from piney to fruity and everything in between. A strong and pungent smell without any moldy odors is often a good sign.

Unless It’s Been Tested For THC Content You Really Don’t Know

Let me tell you a little story from my college days. I used to get herb from a guy who always had great stuff. I never had a problem until this one batch. The batch looked absolutely gorgeous. A beautiful purple hue was woven together with luscious flowing red hairs. It smelled divine.

I was beyond excited to give it a try. I loaded it up in a pipe and took a nice big hit. It tasted amazing. So, what’s the problem? It didn’t get me high no matter how much I smoked. It was the most frustrating experience ever. Here I had some terrific looking, smelling, and tasting weed that just would not get me high.

I really have no idea why happened to the weed to render it in such condition. Perhaps an error was made in the growing process. It could have also been the strain. Maybe he got a CBD strain without realizing it. I’ll probably never know. All I can do is offer this tale of caution to anyone buying weed that hasn’t been tested to verify it contains the desired amount and type of cannabinoids.

4. Not Smoking Enough

This is always a possibility, but honestly, it’s not normally the cause of contention in these cases. Of course, if you only take a few small hits and don’t get high then there’s your problem, but this tends to be an obvious solution for people.

It’s usually a quality problem in these cases. If you have low-quality weed to start with then you’re going to need to smoke more of it. If you’re starting with good weed and you don’t smoke regularly then you should be feeling high off of 3-4 hits.

5. Method of Consumption

There are lots of ways to smoke – pipes, bongs, joints, blunts, vaporizers, and the list goes on. Sometimes first-timers use a method that doesn’t work well for them. For most early smokers I recommend joints. They’re just simple. No carb. No relighting. No batteries. Just paper and herb. BUT, if you’ve tried only joints and it’s not working for you then you may want to try something else like a pipe.

I also hear of some people having trouble getting high off vaporizers. This could be due to a defective unit or one that is set at the wrong temperature. If your health allows, try smoking instead of vaping. You could also try edibles.

The idea is simply to mix up what you’re doing with a new method of consumption.

6. Medical Condition

I’m not going to go too deep into this section because I’m not a doctor. If you have a medical condition then you should really be consulting a physician on these matters and not some random blog you found through a google search. With that said, some people with severe medical conditions claim to not feel high after smoking, but rather they feel normal.

This goes along with the notion that feeling high can be very different things to different people. Just because your high doesn’t manifest itself in the same way as someone else doesn’t mean you’re broken.

Before we move on I do want to take a moment to talk about the pregnenolone hormone, which is kinda fascinating. A study published in 2014 showed the hormone pregnenolone acted as a blocker for THC in lab rats. This mean, if your body produces high levels of pregnenolone it could possibly be naturally blocking the THC from interacting with your body.

7. Tolerance is Too High

If you’re new to smoking then this is not going to be the case for you.

The more frequently you smoke the higher your tolerance is going to build up. Over time, your tolerance may get to the point that it’s very difficult to get high without smoking an exorbitant amount. In this case, it may be time for a tolerance break. Essentially, a tolerance break is when someone takes a break from smoking in order to lower their tolerance down to a reasonable level.

If you want to read more about tolerance breaks you can check out this article I wrote on the subject. The comment section is really great on that article so make sure you check it out.

Lastly, I want to mention strain tolerance. This occurs when you’ve been smoking the same strain for a long time. If this is the case then try switching to a different strain.

Thanks for reading! If you enjoyed this article then here are a few of my other articles you may enjoy:

How to Smoke Weed Properly: A First-Timer’s Guide

10 Tips on How to NOT Smell Like Weed

How Long Do You Stay High After Smoking Weed / Edibles?


  • Anonymous says:

    after smoking hydro can’t get high on Reggie.

  • Mardifleur says:

    WTH?? I am on ZERO rx meds,nada, nothin’, bupkus…in the 70s, ragweed, basement weed could get a bitch a buzz. Got AMAAAAZING looking/smelling/sticky feeling funky weed, annnnd…—NOTHIN!
    What’s a girl got t’DO???

    • Mike S. says:


      Many strains today are very powerful! Some have even 38% THC!

      I would recommend getting Jack Herer or Icecream sandwich.

      Try different kind to help you figure out what works for you. Try an Indica, Sativa, and a hybrid.

      I recommend trying those two above. Or, mix some marijuana strains and grind them up together (WARNING: mixing weed can give unwanted side effects, so check if you should mix your strains that you have.)

  • Oh! There’s actually a lot of reasons why some weed are not effective . Thank you for sharing this. This article is very informative.

  • Lee says:

    I read that some people have mutated receptors which prevents ones ability to get high.

    • wani says:

      There’s always a chance for that, biology is biology, but I highly doubt it’s strictly from heritage or chance. The CB receptors have important functions that aren’t strictly for mood regulation, if a mutation exist I doubt it will only affect the ability to get high, could also cause more serious disease.

      Just a theory, but I think there may be good reason (possibly evolutionary) the body has such low levels of cannabinoid, hence the negative feedback loop the pregnenolone paper mentioned. Tolerance may be because the feedback loop is permanently heightened or more easily regulated, or another biological pathway is happening that we still don’t know about.

  • Sarah. says:

    My first time was horrible. I thought I would try it because my bf was begging me. It already smells like a dead skunk to me and tastes absolutely horrible to I pinched my nose to taste it less while hitting it. I hit it at least 8 times- LOONGGG slow and DEEP breaths. Had an open mind.

    Did absolutely nothing for me except hightened my physical senses and made my throat feel horrible. Everything FELT a little different. Things were more hot/cold and more smooth. And I could also feel the pain of my sore muscles RUSH in. (Thought it was supposed to make you not feel pain) and while smoking, he had me hit it when he first packed it so I would get the “freshest” part- felt like razor blades down my throat. I was so concerned and scared of the pain. Also, I did sleep “good”, I didn’t wake up once in the middle of the night. But I guess because of it in my system I had the most vivid, depressing dream I’ve had in a while.

    Didn’t even get “high”. Actually tried my best to. Did nothing but tear up my throat and make my muscles feel sore. And give me nightmares. So yeah, never ever ever doing that again. Not worth it.

  • Anonymous says:

    I used to get high all the time as a teen but quit doing it when my mother passed when I was 16 I am now 38 and have started smoking and eating edibles and I can not get high for the life of me. I dont know what to do.

    • Anonymous says:

      Could you possibly have a psychological “block” that prevents you from feeling high because you associate getting high with the painful time of your mother’s death?

    • Anonymous says:

      Not a doctor, was reading that very few purple can’t get high off edibles. Something to do with an enzyme in the liver. I sadly can’t get high off edibles. I had 500mg of pot in 4 different edibles in one night. I felt nothing.

  • Eric Dewayne Smith says:

    I just did 7 yrs paper. Bought a oz and smoked 3 j. And a bowl…. Nothing..
    Wtf its been 7 years…just wanna smoke and live… Smells wonderful no seeds. Crisp break. Wtf. Im in houston

    • Joe Kinney says:

      I hadn’t smoked in over a year. I buy the highest quality flowers I can find. I switch stray s constantly. I can’t get high 95% of the time. I found one strain that worked ok, grease monkey, but of course I developed a tolerance to this strain by the third 8th.

      I guess concentrates are next…

    • Ed says:

      Maybe it was CBD weed, which containts >0.2% THC, can get it online normally.

    • Anonymous says:

      It’s that stuff they put in the pintas food

    • Katie Mcneil says:

      I have been smoking since I got diagnosed with a tumor in my brain. I’m trying this Indica Kush 1 gram and I cannot get high and I don’t understand why this is the last one that I got was a cutecumber and it had 78% THC this one however has 75.9% THC so I don’t understand why this is not working this is so very frustrating for me since I’m in so much pain I just want a relief for one fucking hit . So can somebody tell me what is going on?

    • Anonymous says:

      Same bro it’s happening everywhere I think people are selling cbd bud as real weed with tHC

  • Bob the builder says:

    Pure nonsense and bs without any scientific reasons.

  • Dr.Green Bud says:

    There is also a lot of people in states like mine where only cbd products are legal,and people are buying it on the web,it looks,smells,and tastes just like their thc enriched cousins,and are selling on the street for profits,and/or to get them some real stuff. If you don’t know where it’s coming from,you will fall victim to this.

  • Petar says:

    Like me and my fried 1 time we smoked 3 grams and nothing happend another time we smoked 1 and git shitfaced, the weed quality is great and we always get it from the same supplier there is 1 or 2 seeds

  • Anonymous says:

    I have noticed with my chemo I am not getting the same buzz (high). It does make me happy, which is a good thing. With out marijuana, my chemo drugs have me irrationally angry most the time.

  • crissy says:

    this very thing just happened to me. a casual acquaintance did me a favor *3rd time and got me 1/8. first was so so, second was stronger but kinda sleepy, and the 3rd was just plain old ragweed. did not stop me from trying! but smoke an entire joint to no avail. i get high off of one hitters. anyway he text me and asked if i thought it was weak or was it just him and i said it’s weak but i wasn’t going to say anything cause that happens from time to time. he said he will replace it for me. very kind of him to do, but i worry about street weed in general. you just do not know what it is or what’s in it. you don’t know where it’s been stored or the chain of custody so to speak. waiting wishing and hoping that it is legalized in the south so i don’t have to drive to DC or Colorado to know what I am getting. btw sometimes it gets harvested too soon. i suspect it might be the case with this crab grass. legalize for public health if nothing else. we are gonna smoke no matter what. it’s in the best interest of the state to regulate the quality of marijuana, both med and rec. gracias.

  • BJ says:

    I have OCD and GAD. Eating pure THC makes me feel normal. I don’t get high anymore which sucks but I do stay happy which is the main goal. So yes, I would agree on mental disorders having something to do with it.

  • J.T says:

    BJ, I agree, I’ve been a medical marijuana patient for 3-4mos., and now I’m lacking the effects of it. I’m not sure if it is due to vaping oils and high concentrated wax, e.t.c, as well as a daily 50mg capsule.
    I can’t say it doesn’t help, as I can tell a slight difference after medicating, but it would be nice to get the nice, heavy buzz I used to! Getting old sucks!

  • Lucifer says:

    I’ve been smoking off and on for almost 12 years now and for the first few years I was able to get “high”…gradually over the next maybe 6 months I would get “high” for less and less time till Ididn’tget “high” at all no matterhow much or what I smoked or ate. I’ve taken breaks from a few days to over 1 year since not getting “high” and when I would start back up I was lucky if I got “high” the first time but nothing after that again. I do have to say that none of the 7 reasons above seem to fit my situation other then possibly #6. I do have some medical conditions that I personally feel could be a contributing factor but every doctor I have spoke with has told me they have no idea why I can’t get “high”… On the bright side…I have never lost a thc tolerance challenge!!!

  • Richard Laino says:

    I just literally threw out the pot I scored, it was a BEAUTIFUL color smell it looked like great weed man was I Happy till I smoked it, I haven’t had bad weed in 50 yrs now I got this BEAUTIFUL bud and nothing. So aggravated I just threw the shit out why all of a sudden can weed look so good and not have any effect what are they doing to weed these daze ???

  • E says:

    I Smoked bud for 10 years. Switched to Concentrates 2 years ago. I smoke about 4 grams of Oil a week and now I can’t get high for the life of me off weed. Last time I tried I smoked about 1.5 grams of some Fire and to no avail I felt nothing.

  • jenn says:

    i think somethings going on, bcuz i try and buy the best everytime. if payed seventy for an eighth and it barely works. also if noticed that it doesnt get you burned out at all. what’s up with that. indoor grown just seems to be missing something. bcuz when this all started it was great. any strain i bought got me high and is be burnt out later. something isnt right. if i could if grow it myself.

  • jenn says:

    the high use to last. something is wrong. wish I could go to amsterdam, maybe its real there.

    • Maritza says:

      Idk if everything out there is getting old but i have changed suppliers and its all been garbage for months now. I have a ton of medical conditions But thats never before been an issue. Im real close to just quitting cuz at this point its just a waste of money.

    • Roger Dean says:

      Jen I totally agree the stuff being sold in the pot shops do little even though they claim high THC %

  • Pamela Grace MUNN says:

    My cartridges don’t seem to last as long but mainly there’s almost no high. I relate to everything here in some way same with my friends. I’ll be sure to be very vocal next time I feel cheated. THEY are rhe ones that need to know. And so it shall be. Rating less than 75% should be seen publically. Make them own it. tks guys xoxoxo

  • J. J. Abrem says:

    I’ve recently started vaping after I took a year off but the effects are lackluster at best. I even tried my first edible, which was a total letdown. My friend got LIT from the same brownie but I did not.

    Would nicotine change how it reacts?
    My experience has changed after acid but I still got high, it was just a different high, not nonexistent!

  • Anonymous says:

    Legal cannabis is being stripped of most of its cannabinoids, thus allowing cbd, cbg, cbn etc… to be sold separately as patches, edibles etc
    .. the legal cannabis industry really only focuses on THCa, thus you have cannabis that dosent contain all of it’s original constituents, which all work in harmony, such as what you get from old school homegrown. THCa is nice but it only produces certain affects that lacks all the other cannabinoid affects..

    This is just an OP-ed…

  • alf says:

    SSRI’s mess with my ability to get high.

  • William says:

    My experience: or lack of….

    At age 38 weed became legal in my state of Nevada. After several months we were invited to a trivia game, and a gift basket full of weed products. Our adopoted daughter has some special needs. We needed a fucking break before we had a break down. Over the course of a few months I would try something every few weeks, 1st a flower/bud in a glass pipe: nothing. Then a pre-rolled in a tube: nothing. Note: i was a former smoker, I smoked for maybe 3 years so I know how to inhale. Then with some friends I tired the vape pen, and later the rocket resin…. at each time my friends would say If this doesn’t get you high, nothing would… well unfortunately nothing would. A really good friend friend took me to a Wille Nelson concert in Laughlin, and I took like 3 hits off this huge blunt, nothing. I like to think I was the first non high person at a Willie Nelson conert in a while … I dont regret any of it, as I spent great time with my wife and friends…. by all in all I tried 11 to 12 times, with super high concentrations at the end… and this point I’ve given up on it. But it would be interesting to have some answers.

  • Anonymous says:


  • Kjeld says:

    s–t ain’t working on me

  • Selenaa says:

    Yes the article is true, I believe the weed is not grown properly or taken care of. trying different strains will be much better or have more orange juice to drink ☺️ it can clear up the thc in your body so it feels like you just started for the first time. everyone’s body is different so it reacts differently on others.

  • Roger Dean says:

    I’ve smoked weed on and off for 43 years. If I buy a joint with a gram in it and it’s 28% THC, though I haven’t smoked in a few weeks I’ll get high for the first night. But the next night, nothing much? Why?
    I tried my first editable chocolate bar, it was 4.95% THC each piece. I tried 3 and nothing. The next night I tried 10 pieces and nothing?
    Even vaping I get on one night and nothing the next night? I’ll go weeks with out smoking, as I though I had a high tolerance. A few years ago I could smoke a bowl of sour diesel and night after night I’d be toasted. So with all these pots shops and high THC weed or liquid vape, why am I not feeling it?

  • Gemini shell says:

    Been smoking since I was 15. 23 now, working 4-5 10-12 hour days, I’ve tried everything to get high but for the life of me cannot anymore doesn’t matter the strain or technique. Even tried packing a 3grams of straight green in one cone …. nope …. then I tried pumping 3 1g cones in a row … nope … ‍♀️ Tolerance break?

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