What is 2CB?

Written by: Marvin Benthien



Time to read 8 min

We often hear about MDMA, LSD and the like, but what is 2-CB? 2C-B, a synthetic psychoactive substance, is increasingly becoming the focus of users and researchers due to its extraordinary mode of action on the human psyche and physiology.

As a member of the phenylethylamine family, 2C-B exerts its effects primarily through interaction with serotonin receptors, leading to a variety of changes in mood, perception and cognition. What is interesting is the varying range of its effects, which are highly dose-dependent - from emotional deepening and increased empathy at lower doses to intense visual hallucinations and psychedelic experiences at higher doses. However, in addition to the fascinating effects on the user's perceptual world, 2C-B also harbors potential risks and side effects that need to be considered. These range from physiological reactions such as an increase in blood pressure and gastrointestinal complaints to more profound mental states. Responsible use of this substance, particularly through careful dosing and an awareness of individual tolerance, is essential to ensure a safe and positive experience. This article provides an in-depth insight into the legal situation, detectability, dosage recommendations and the (after)effects of 2C-B to provide users and interested parties with a comprehensive source of information. So: 2CB - what is it?

Structural formula of 2C-B
Structural formula of 2C-B

What are 2CB effects and side effects?

2C-B, a synthetically produced psychoactive phenylethylamine, has multiple effects on the human psyche and physiology. The substance is known for its ability to significantly influence the user's mood and perception by binding to serotonin receptors in the brain. This interaction leads to a change in the transmission of excitation in the central nervous system. What is particularly interesting is that 2C-B can have a range of effects, depending on the dose taken. Incidentally, 2CB pills are the most widely used form of ingestion.

How does 2CB work - depending on the dosage?

At lower dosages, in the range of 5 to 15 milligrams, users often experience an increased feeling of self-connectedness and emotional deepening. In this dose range, many also describe an increase in social and emotional empathy, similar to the effects known from MDMA (ecstasy). At higher doses, however, especially from 15 to 30 milligrams, more intense visual hallucinations often occur. The effect of 2CB can therefore also trigger visuals. People then report a strong enhancement of color perception, complex geometric patterns appearing in the field of vision, and even synesthesia effects, especially in connection with music.

In addition to the impressive 2CB visuals, the substance can also have mild stimulating and euphoric effects. But what is the 2CB effect duration? 2C-B basically works for up to 8 hours during a trip, depending on the amount taken. However, it is crucial to also consider the potential side effects of this substance. The most common adverse effects include

  • Increase in blood pressure and heart rate

  • Dilation of the pupils

  • Gastrointestinal problems

Likewise, users may report intense mental states ranging from introspective thinking to a heightened sense of connectedness.

The visual hallucinations in particular can range from simple color intensifications to complex inner visions. Individual experiences with 2C-B are highly variable and depend on the dosage, personal condition and context of use. The description of the alteration of consciousness by 2C-B is considered unique and similar to a mixture between MDMA and LSD. However, awareness of potential risks should always be paramount - panic attacks, restlessness and increased body temperature are potential dangers that should not be underestimated. Therefore, a conscious and informed approach to taking 2C-B and other psychedelics is essential in order to experience the desired effects safely and pleasantly.

By the way: Mixed consumption with 2C-B can also be very dangerous, so this should definitely be avoided.

2CB dosage: Which dosage is the right one?

Determining the right dosage of 2C-B is a crucial step in achieving the desired experience without risking unwanted side effects. Individual response to 2CB can vary greatly, which is why it is recommended to start with a lower dose and slowly increase it as needed. For beginners and those who prefer mild effects, the recommended oral dose is between 5 and 15 milligrams. In this range, users should be able to experience the characteristic emotional deepening and heightened sense of self-connectedness, without the more intense visual hallucinations that higher doses bring.

However, those seeking a deeper psychedelic experience may find doses of 15 to 30 milligrams suitable. At this range, the effects become markedly stronger, including intense visual hallucinations and more pronounced perceptual changes.

Newcomers to 2C-B use should start with doses at the lower end of the spectrum, around 14 to 18 milligrams. More experienced users could start with 18 to 24 milligrams, but should always keep an eye on their body's reaction.

What if I take 2C-B nasally?

It should be noted that nasal ingestion (i.e., snorting 2CB powder) has a significantly higher potency. Therefore, about half the oral amount is recommended for nasal doses in order to achieve comparable effects.

The guideline values for snorting 2C-B are therefore between 2 and 15 milligrams. Regardless of the method of administration, it is wise to choose the dosage wisely, especially if you are inexperienced with the substance.

The importance of responsible dosing cannot be overemphasized, as even a slight increase can significantly intensify the experience. Furthermore, psychogenic potency varies greatly between individuals, depending on factors such as body weight, metabolic rate and personal tolerance. One aspect of use that should be respected is the risk of overdosing on 2C-B, which can have serious health consequences. Therefore, all users should proceed with caution and respect their personal limits to ensure a safe and positive experience.

2CB powder
2CB powder. The image "2CB Powder" by Denys Doskach is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

Is 2CB detectable in drug tests?

The question of whether 2C-B is detectable in drug tests concerns both occasional users and people who are subject to regular drug screening due to professional circumstances. Modern drug testing methods, in particular mass spectrometry and urinalysis, offer the possibility of identifying a large number of substances in the body, and the sensitivity and reliability of the tests have improved significantly in recent years.

2C-B: What is the usual method of detection?

Mass spectrometry is considered a highly sensitive method for trace analysis. It can detect and identify even the smallest quantities of substances in the body. In principle, it is also possible to detect 2C-B and its metabolites after ingestion. However, this method is not used as standard in all drug screenings due to its complexity and high costs.

Urinalysis, on the other hand, is a widely used and non-invasive method for drug testing. After taking the 2CB drug, the substance itself and its metabolites can be detected in the urine for up to three days. However, it should be noted that urine analyses in conventional drug tests are often biased towards the most commonly abused substances and 2C-B may not be included in all standard tests. Therefore, the likelihood of 2C-B being identified in a conventional drug test may depend on the specific parameters of the test.

In addition to urine and blood, advanced drug tests may also include hair analysis, which can map a longer period of use. However, these are usually more expensive and are used less frequently than the usual urine or blood tests.

Different drugs can of course be detected differently and what is true for 2C-B does not necessarily apply to other substances. We have a separate article on the detection of LSD!

Is 2CB legal?

The legal status of 2C-B varies considerably around the world, due to the different drug policies and legislation in different countries. 2C-B was classified under Schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act in the United States in 1994, meaning that 2C-B is considered a substance with no recognized medical use and a high potential for abuse. This classification makes the non-medical possession and use of 2C-B illegal. 2C-B is also on the list of controlled substances in other countries. In the Netherlands, for example, it was classified as an illegal drug in 1997, and Japan followed with a similar ban in 1998. In addition, the UN Commission on Narcotic Drugs added 2C-B to Schedule II of the Convention on Psychotropic Substances in March 2001, sealing its legal restriction at a global level.

Is 2C-B legal: What is the status in Germany?

In Germany, 2C-B is listed in Schedule I of the Narcotics Act (BtMG), which classifies it as a non-marketable and non-prescribable substance. Accordingly, the acquisition, possession, trade, import, export and dispensing of 2C-B without a special permit from the Federal Institute for Drugs and Medical Devices is punishable by law. This strict regulatory framework reflects the serious concerns that exist regarding the use and distribution of 2C-B in various countries. It is clear that engaging in activities involving the possession or distribution of 2C-B can have significant legal consequences.

It is therefore essential for users who want to experiment with 2C-B or are already doing so to inform themselves in detail about the legal provisions in their specific geographical or legal context. Comprehensive knowledge of local laws and regulations is crucial to effectively protect yourself from legal risks and to make informed decisions regarding the use and handling of 2C-B.

What is the 2CB hangover - how do you feel the day after taking it?

2C-B is often prized for its relatively mild after-effects compared to other psychoactive substances. While many drugs, especially those with stimulant properties, can cause a pronounced 'hangover' or negative feelings the day after use, when it comes to 2C-B, the after-effects are somewhat more benign. Users often report feeling relatively clear-headed and balanced after an experience with 2C-B, which is an attractive feature of the substance.

What are the after-effects of 2C-B?

After the main effects wear off, usually after a few hours, some users report a brief period of mild mental and physical after-effects. These can include a reduced ability to concentrate and slight fatigue, but are usually neither severe nor particularly bothersome. This differs significantly from the intense "hangover" symptoms that can occur after consuming substances such as alcohol or MDMA, where the body and mind need significantly more time to recover. What is striking about 2C-B is that reactions to ingestion can vary greatly from individual to individual, depending on several factors such as the dose consumed, the general state of health, the environment during consumption and personal sensitivity to the substance.

While many users report a pleasant experience - both during the duration of effects and in the aftermath - it is advisable to consume 2C-B in a safe and supportive environment. This includes careful planning and dosing beforehand. Ultimately, responsible use of 2C-B and other psychoactive substances leads to a safer and more enjoyable experience. Despite the low likelihood of getting an unpleasant hangover, users should be aware that any substance has the potential to produce unexpected physical and psychological effects. As with all drugs, it is important to listen to your body and take appropriate action if you experience any signs of discomfort or negative after-effects.

2CB Effect: What is the risk of psychosis?

2CB is known for its psychedelic and empathogenic effects, but it can also increase the risk of psychotic symptoms, especially in individuals with a vulnerability to mental illnesses such as schizophrenia. The use of 2CB can lead to intense hallucinations, paranoid thoughts, disorientation and a heightened sense of reality distortion. These effects can be temporary, but in susceptible individuals they can be more severe and lead to longer-lasting psychotic states. It is important to emphasize that the use of 2C-B should be done with caution in individuals with a history of mental disorders or genetic predisposition, as this may increase the risk of 2CB psychosis.

What needs to be mentioned with 2CB is obviously the highly individual mode of action and the high risk of 2CB overdose. Caution is definitely advised when experimenting on yourself.

Disclaimer: Basically, our aim is never to motivate people to use drugs - our work serves to educate people.