We're getting closer to a world in which, as long as you're doing your job, off-hours cannabis consumption won't much matter to employers. But, for now, there are still situations in which you could be required to provide a sample for testing, and your employer can still fire you even if you live in a legal state, as a medical marijuana patient from Colorado found out last year.
Considering THC tends to hang around in your system for at least three weeks, and potentially as long as a few months after your last use, even average, casual users could find themselves in an awkward situation.
Unsurprisingly, tons of products have been developed to help people pass "The Test". Here are three common products being peddled in this dark era of prohibition - and why, whatever your level of desperation, they probably won't work.
1. 'Detox' drinks
Beverages like Rapid Clear XXL , THC Detox, and Instant Clean claim to clear your system of residual THC with 24 hours, typically, via diuretics like caffeine and various herbal/vitamin additives. Those claims obviously aren't regulated - and, even if they were, drinking a whole case in an attempt to dilute your sample is likely to result in unintended, disastrous consequences. "Guzzling lots of fluids to dilute a sample is not always advantageous," warns The Cannabist. "A sample may be flagged for being diluted. Depending on the circumstances, the sample can be treated as a positive result." In other words: doubling down on these pricey beverages - or water, or any other fluids, for that matter - means you're likely to get caught.
2. Fake urine
If you haven't delved in depth into the subject, this one may come as a surprise: there's actually a dizzying array of fake pee available for sale online. "Today's synthetics usually include creatinine along with a coloring dye and, sometimes, some salts," according to an Oregon LIve story. "Labs have moved on to test for other chemicals you'd expect to find in real human urine, as well as smelling specimens and shaking them to see if they foam naturally." Too bad testing is also constantly evolving to keep pace with fraudulent offerings: there's no guarantee the faux wee you've purchased will actually fool anyone.
3. Follicle shampoo
A urine sample isn't the only way to test for THC - also common is a hair test, which "works by detecting drug metabolites passively diffused from the blood stream to the base of the hair follicle," according to a High Times article."With a pencil-thick sample about an inch and a half long, hair-test labs can detect drug use within the past three months - including patterns of use, such as if you smoked pot, stopped for a month and then smoked again." Manufacturers of medical-grade follicle shampoos claim their product's acidic base will destroys toxin metabolites, including THC - but if the very mixed reviews of such products are any indication, there's no guarantee they actually work.
In short? There's a lot of snake oil being peddled to folks desperate to test clean for marijuana. Although there's evidence to suggest that zinc supplements, or papain supplements might actually , legitimately interfere with THC detection, for now, there's only one surefire way to pass: take a tolerance break until you're sure you're good to go.