Does CBD Show Up On A Drug Test? | It Absolutely Depends on THC!
Written By Kobi Nathan, Pharm.D., M.Ed., CDP, BCGP, AGSF
Sleep Disorders
November 3, 2023

Does CBD Show Up On A Drug Test?

Short answer, yes, if you are using certain CBD products. The following can result in a positive drug test:

  1. Full spectrum CBD
  2. Low-quality CBD products
  3. Cross-contamination with THC
  4. Secondhand exposure to THC
  5. Mislabeled CBD products

You want to know if CBD products will make you fail your drug test. Does it show up at all on a drug test?

What do you need to know about taking a CBD product before taking a drug test?

Is there anything you can do to prevent a positive test?

Well, to answer these questions thoroughly with the best scientific evidence possible, I will focus on two objectives in this post:

  1. Identify what cannabidiol (CBD) is, where it comes from, and how it is different from tetrahydrocannabinol (THC)
  2. Analyze and identify which chemical compounds these drug tests are looking for and whether CBD-containing products will trigger a positive result on the tests

To stay focused on the point of this article, I will only go into a little detail describing the properties and structure of CBD and THC in this post.

That is why I wrote another article that delves much deeper into CBD, the science-based literature exploring its potential therapeutic effects on various issues such as pain, anxiety, known drug interactions, the entourage effect, and its potential benefits in older adults.

This article addresses CBD only, which has similarities and differences with CBG.

If you want to learn about these differences, click here to read my detailed article.

Alright, let’s address #1 first…

What is the difference between CBD and THC?

The hemp plant and the marijuana plant belong to the same species of the cannabis plant – Cannabis sativa.

Both types of plants have hundreds of naturally occurring compounds in them, including CBD. Yes, the psychoactive marijuana plant also has CBD in it.

Hemp has trace amounts of THC content, usually below 0.3 percent by dry weight, while marijuana has more than 0.3 percent THC. 

Regarding substance abuse or dependence potential with CBD use, the World Health Organization says there is no evidence to suggest this exists with the use of pure CBD.

According to the organization, CBD was found to be well tolerated and safe across many clinical trials studying its potential health benefits.

So, CBD does NOT make you high, while THC does.

Okay, for our discussion, let’s focus on the most common type and sought-after CBD formulation available in the United States – CBD oil.

What is CBD oil?

To make CBD oil, cannabidiol is extracted from the cannabis plant – remember, this can be from hemp plants or marijuana plants.

This active ingredient is then diluted and mixed with a carrier oil with high stability. This is usually a medium-chain triglyceride oil such as hemp seed or coconut oil.

This article has affiliate links. I may earn a small commission at no additional cost to you. Thank you for your support!

There are different types of CBD products available. Let’s explore them below:

Full-Spectrum CBD

As the name suggests, full-spectrum CBD oil consists of all the compounds found naturally in the cannabis plant.

This includes THC, terpenes, flavonoids, and other cannabinoids.

Again, my article referenced above explains what these compounds are.

Broad-spectrum CBD

Broad-spectrum CBD oil, while similar to full-spectrum oil, has a key difference: all trace amounts of THC have been removed while retaining all other compounds found in full-spectrum oil. This is the perfect formulation for anyone who wants no THC in their CBD products.

This type of oil, therefore, will not result in a positive drug test (more on this later…).



CBD Isolate

CBD Isolate products contain purified and isolated CBD. All of the other compounds, including THC, have been removed. It exists as a crystalline solid at room temperature.

It is colorless and odorless, and can be consumed in its existing form or added to food or beverages.

Phytocannabinoid-Rich or CBD-Rich Oil is a highly distilled and filtered CBD formulation where unnecessary compounds such as waxes and other materials found in the plant have been removed.

Compared to the regular or raw extracting process, this unique filtration method results in a highly concentrated CBD product.

Not many CBD companies offering CBD products can claim to have these formulations available for their customers.

However, I have found one company that checks all of the boxes (read on to learn more about this ethical, world-class seller…)

CBD-infused Oil

CBD-infused Oil can refer to a product that has been infused with either a CBD Isolate or a product that has been infused with a full spectrum or Broad Spectrum CBD concentrate.

Reading the label is key – if the product label states it contains CBD isolate, then it does not contain THC.

If the label states that it contains full-spectrum CBD concentrate, then it contains THC.

So, you can see how the label will be important for you to decide which product you need to get – if you need to take a drug test,  then you do NOT want to take full-spectrum CBD-infused oil.

 Ok, let’s delve into  objective #2 of this article:

Reasons why using CBD Oil may result in a positive test result

Not all CBD formulations are the same, and consuming products from sketchy or untrustworthy companies can show up on drug tests.

Here are the possible reasons why this can happen:

Using a CBD product that contains THC:

Will using full-spectrum CBD oil make me fail a drug test?

Most likely, YES! Because the test identifies the THC component in the product.

If you fail a drug test from using a CBD product, then this is the main reason.

All drug tests are looking for the psychoactive compound THC.

Another reason may be that the product was made with CBD sourced from low-quality isolates containing too much THC. Or, maybe the CBD was not extracted from the hemp plant, but rather, the marijuana plant.

As I mentioned above, not all manufacturers are ethical and transparent about their products –  don’t just take their statements as fact – ask for actual proof of their product source, such as independent third-party lab test results.

Cross-Contamination with other THC-containing products:

If the manufacturer uses cheap CBD extractions from the marijuana plant, it is highly likely that some of the THC present in the source material may be found in the final CBD product…with enough concentration to lead to a positive drug test result.

Again, it is vital that you find the right company to purchase CBD products from – all marijuana and hemp plant sourcing, manufacturing process, facility certification, legal compliance, and third-party lab testing results MUST be readily available to the public.

With these, there should be absolutely no compromises!

The likelihood of CBD products becoming contaminated with THC is also increased in states where marijuana is legal.

Companies manufacturing marijuana and CBD products in the same facility risk cross-contamination of their products, and taking any of their products can make you test positive.

Secondhand Exposure to THC

While very difficult, it is possible to fail a drug test if you are in close proximity to heavy second-hand marijuana smoke…so, if you have a drug test in your foreseeable future, you want to definitely avoid situations where you know you will be in the same room with a large number of pot smokers!

This is especially true if the cannabis smoke is highly potent.

Mislabeled CBD Products

Mislabeling happens very often with CBD products!


Because these products are considered supplements and fall under the protection of the DSHEA Act.

While the law itself is meant to protect the public from unscrupulous manufacturers making outlandish health claims, it can be a double-edged sword…as long as the CBD manufacturer does not make any health claims, then their products do not need to be regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

So, if the CBD product is not regulated, then there is no way for us to know what is exactly in it…unless the manufacturer is transparent and ethical, and voluntarily provides independent lab testing data to the public.

One study found that 21 out of 84 CBD products purchased online that claimed to contain only CBD also contained THC!

In the video below, Dr. Neusse from the YouTube channel “Easy DOT Physicals” discusses how CBD may result in positive drug tests and the pitfalls to look out for:

What are the Different Types of Drug Testing?

Blood, saliva, hair, and urine drug tests can be used to check for the presence of THC and its metabolites, which are related chemicals created when the body breaks down or metabolizes THC.

However, most drug tests also test for the presence of other substances, such as the 7-panel, 9-panel, 10-panel, and 12-panel tests.

The urine test is the most common test administered to look for THC and THC metabolites and is quite accurate, especially for screening in the workplace.

How long does marijuana (THC) stay in the urine?

The urine marijuana immunoassay test will be considered positive if there is more than 50 ng/mL of THC in the urine sample.

THC can stay in your system for quite some time after you have stopped using marijuana, up to 10 days on average for a casual user.

However, the level of THC can stay in your system a lot longer if you use marijuana often, for two to four weeks, or even past a month if you use it very often.

THC stays in hair the longest – it can yield a positive drug test even up to 90 days!

The table below lists estimated detection time frames for THC in the different types of drug screening available:

THC Detection Windows for Different Drug Tests

BloodUp to 7 days
HairUp to 90 days
SalivaUp to 24 hours
UrineUp to 3 days (up to 6 weeks in heavy users)

Does CBD show up on military drug tests?

Military drug tests and civilian test kits are virtually identical.

The outcomes will be the same as a result.

This means that CBD oil or any other CBD product could test positive on a drug test for the military, just like it could on a regular drug test kit.

CBD and Army drug tests

Can CBD products be detected by Army drug tests? They can, yes.

The Army, Marines, Navy, Coast Guard, and other DoD agencies all use common urinalysis tests provided by external, contractual businesses.

The drug tests conducted by the Army are identical to those conducted by other employers.

As I have written above, any THC found in the CBD can trigger a positive test. Full-spectrum CBD oil or broad-spectrum CBD oil contaminated with THC will result in a failing test.

If you are in the military, I would highly advise avoiding any CBD products.

The risk is just not worth it.

The use of CBD is prohibited in the military, per the DoD.

The US Department of Defense classifies pure CBD products as a controlled substance, much like marijuana plants, even though they contain no THC and aren’t psychoactive.

So, a personal note from a member of a military family to all my brothers and sisters – please don’t risk it!

Where can you get a drug test without an order?

If you are asking this question, I assume that you want to get tested discreetly…maybe you have an upcoming drug test at your workplace, or you have just been hired at a new job, and urine testing is required.

Or, maybe you want to get tested for peace of mind and want to know.

If you are looking for a reputable lab to get tested, then is the place for you.

Here are the reasons why you may want to consider using this service:

  • No insurance or referral required – they provide the doctor’s order or referral that the laboratories require, so your physician’s referral is not needed or required
  • No hidden fees/Affordable – when you order your test on the website, the price you see next to the lab test is what you pay! No taxes, no shipping costs, nothing!
  • Same local labs your doctor uses – all tests are done in one of more than 4,500 partnered, certified labs across the U.S.
  • Speedy results – most results are available in your own discreet, secure online account within 24-72 hours
  • Security & Privacy maintained – HIPAA law compliant, strict adherence to privacy. No one will know what test you are getting. Since you bypass your doctor, results are private and kept off your medical record!
  • Convenience – Health labs is open seven days a week, and results are uploaded to your online account daily
  • No appointment necessary – all labs are walk-in, no appointment needed! Just place your order online, print your form, and head to the testing lab nearest you!

If you are ready, you can order your 7-panel, 9-panel, 12-panel, and 14-panel drug tests here and get your results in 1-3 days!


My recommendation for clean and trustworthy CBD products

After countless hours of research and picking apart online companies’ claims with my very discerning, clinically-trained eyes, I found the one company that checks off all my stringent requirements and exceeds my high standards – Joy Organics.

Here is a list of why I think they are indeed the BEST CBD company and you can answer “No” to the question, “Does CBD show up on a drug test?”:

  • CBD extract sourced from state-of-the-art USDA-certified organic farms
  • CBD oil is created strictly from Hemp flowers – no seeds, stems, or stalks! (What other companies can say this?!)
  • Proprietary USDA-certified hemp extraction process – purified to produce CBD oil free from solvents, fats, waxes, pesticides, and undesirable plant compounds
  • THC removal – Through a USDA-certified organic chromatography process, THC is removed to yield pure, broad-spectrum hemp-derived CBD oil (Be wary of other companies’ claims – this is an expensive process, and very few companies do this)
  • Product development and manufacturing – no corners are cut…EVER! Joy Organic’s 20,000-square-foot facility. Located in Fort Collins, CO, it is registered with the FDA, USDA-certified organic, and strictly adheres to cGMP!!!
  • Third-party lab testing – Every single batch produced by Joy Organics undergoes rigorous third-party lab testing by an ISO-certified lab. All products are tested for microbes, potency, heavy metals, pesticides (60 total), and solvents
  • Proprietary Nanoemulsion technology – this is what separates Joy Organics from other companies. Joy’s broad spectrum CBD oil undergoes a proprietary process that transforms it into water-soluble, nano-sized particles that are easily absorbed by the body (increased bioavailability)
  • Carbon-neutral shipping – CBD products are shipped in recyclable, reduced carbon-footprint packaging – the company is doing its part to save our planet!
  • The company offers all types of CBD products to satisfy all CBD users, such as CBD gummies, CBD topicals, CBD tinctures, broad-spectrum CBD products, full-spectrum CBD products, CBD pet products, etc.


You can go ahead and place your Joy Organics orders here. Use code GA20 for 20% off your order!

 How to avoid a positive CBD test

  • Take your time and research, research, research CBD companies! Look for online reviews and complaints!
  • The CBD products must be pure, potent, and a third-party certificate of analysis MUST be available
  • Avoid taking a full-spectrum CBD product; take a completely THC-free CBD product instead
  • Avoid cross-contamination with THC/marijuana when using CBD products
  • Avoid being exposed to second-hand marijuana smoke

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