Can Absinthe Make You Hallucinate?

By Brian Lemay 100 comments

[classical music] Hey there, kids! I’m Jonathan Strickland,
and this is the BrainStuff about that most powerful of liquors: Absinthe. So in
1905 a Swiss vineyard worker named Jean Lanfray shot his pregnant wife and
his two daughters. Then he tried to kill himself,
unsuccessfully. The public were absolutely outraged and blamed the whole thing on two glasses of absinthe Lanfray had consumed before his rampage. Absinthe is an anise-flavored alcoholic
drink and for a while there it was and in the United States, Switzerland and
France. The traditional recipe from before the band has a really high
alcohol content — anywhere from 55 to 75 percent — so you’re supposed to dilute it
when you drink it, unless you’ve already started the day
drinking paint thinner. Absinthe’s made from anise, fennel, a plant called wormwood and a variety of other herbs and flowers. This recipe was first commercially produced in 1797 by Henri-Louis Pernod and a century later it was incredibly popular because a vine pest made wine less available. Simultaneously,
an anti-alcohol movement was growing, called for by doctors, the clergy and the
wine growers, who wanted their industry back. The growers started a misinformation campaign linking absinthe to hallucinations, seizures, suicides and
murders, like those committed by Lanfray. They even produced posters denouncing
addiction to the drink as absinthe-ism, which I suffered from in junior high. Recent studies show though that if there
was a real problem, it was actually widespread alcoholism
that was to blame. Remember, absinthe has an incredibly high concentration of alcohol in it and at the time it was one of the most highly
consumed drinks in France, so the two went hand in hand. But the
scientists of the time perhaps misguided by absinthe-ism
propaganda missed this interrelationship. Instead they performed experiments on
animals to prove that wormwood was at fault. But here’s the thing there’s a component
in wormwood called thujone that in high doses can be toxic. Examination of
historic absent products has determined that they actually had about the same
thujone in them as today’s maximum limits will allow — meaning they weren’t
toxic. But did absinthe make people hallucinate? It’s unlikely. But if it did, it was probably caused by the ethanol content and not the thujone in the wormwood. Since 2007, modern absinthe can only be sold the United States if it’s thujone-free; if it has wormwood in it, the FDA considers it adulterated. But
honestly, you could probably get away with bringing a bottle or two into the
country in your suitcase. If you’re looking to hallucinate with
the green fairy, there’s no evidence that absinthe even with high doses of thujone will get you there. Frankly, you’d probably die from alcohol
poisoning well before you felt any effects from the thujone. Oh, and for the record, when Jean Janfray killed his family, he had a lot more to drink than absinthe. He also had about 13 glasses of wine, 6
cognacs, 2 coffees full of brandy, and the crème de menthe.



Oct 10, 2016, 8:42 pm Reply

i've ordered several from europe if u like jager black licorice and green niquil you'll like absinthe it's really just a novelty

giovanni mandato

Oct 10, 2016, 12:31 am Reply

If it has less than 10mg/Kg of thujone it's legally considered thujone-free but it stills have some thujone. There's no evidence to show that pre-ban absinthes contained more than that since it doesn't go through the distillation, which means that what is being sold in the US is authentic absinthe. Thujone itself is hallucinogenic, however since absinthe contains just a small amount of it, you should not feel any weird effects if you drink it responsibly. If you drink too much you will probably suffer an alcoholic intoxication before you can reach a level of thujone that makes you hallucinate.

Garry Reyom

Oct 10, 2016, 7:51 am Reply

Absinthe is really good, especially diluted with sugar, really good drink!

Wouldn’t Youliketoknow

Oct 10, 2016, 5:28 pm Reply

yeah, drank about a half bottle and didn't experience anything outside of the normal pink elephants.

dank edits

Oct 10, 2016, 9:41 pm Reply

80% stroh is worse doe

Przemyslaw Szulc

Oct 10, 2016, 7:00 am Reply

10 years ago I had good absynth from Czech Republic. I had small effects on it: grass was moving little bit. Was fun but it wore out quickly.


Oct 10, 2016, 1:11 pm Reply

I had a shot of green fairy once. It has a very strong chemical flavour, reminiscent of minty mouth wash. I believe the one I had was about 65%.

Sir Fap A Lot

Oct 10, 2016, 2:38 pm Reply

Drank a entire bottle of this stuff a while ago, yes, a lot of alcohol… and yes i was pretty wasted… hallucinations? bullsh…


Oct 10, 2016, 2:42 pm Reply

Do americans spell Herbs, Erbs??

Its Just an Apple

Oct 10, 2016, 3:15 pm Reply

how to change youtube Graphical user interface i accidentally changed it small and i want it back to normal plz help

Dominic Schmidt

Oct 10, 2016, 12:45 pm Reply

I had absinthe and there was no difference compared to other hard stuff liquors.

Cody Avant

Nov 11, 2016, 12:13 pm Reply

:/ I'm not a kid

kimmer epic

Nov 11, 2016, 10:46 pm Reply

the real absinth back in the 1700-1800ish had almost all types of drugs in it x) so that kind would prolly make u halucinate, or kill u.

some bleeding eyes

Nov 11, 2016, 7:34 am Reply

me and my dad got drunk before a guar on that he talked to a guy he did not know for a half hour thinking it was me

Rory Stevens

Nov 11, 2016, 10:43 pm Reply

Out the gate, Absinthe is similar to Pernod and even a bit like Sambuca. I don't know what people think it tastes like, but they are always surprised it's licorice and herb in flavour. So, I like it. You can take a shot, but it's so much booze you don't taste much. Better with water and some sweetener. It's a summery drink.

As far as effect, I didn't find it to be exactly like normal booze. Mind you, at the time I was drinking it, I was pretty damn tolerant of booze. It has a bit of a dreamy lift when it first hits. I felt less sluggishly drunk and more clear-headed and creative (and I drank it a fair bit). However, that lasts maybe 20 minutes. After that? You're just fucking drunk. If you want to hallucinate, eat some mushrooms or something. If you want a nice drink, have some absinthe.


Nov 11, 2016, 2:55 am Reply

Back when the Euro first became a currency, and was doing poorly so you could buy stuff SUPER cheap, I found a website based in Spain that would ship absinthe to the US. I must have ordered dozens of different bottles over the years, sourced from all over Europe.

Never once did I hallucinate from it. I may have felt mild effects, but it was mild enough that it's unclear if it was because I expected to, or if it was actually happening. Even with the most potent stuff I ever bought, nothing. Tasty though, now I don't hate that black licorice flavor anymore. INSANE hangovers though, do not overdo it with that shit, you have been warned.


Nov 11, 2016, 11:03 am Reply

Where I live the local bottle shop sells four different colours of absinthe with varying alcohol content, the last one I had was black which was 80% ABV, such good stuff.

Marty the kid Behsman

Nov 11, 2016, 5:26 pm Reply

It all matters where you get your bottle an who brewed it


Nov 11, 2016, 9:29 pm Reply

Meanwhile, we sit here in Trondheim, Norway in the forest, drinking our 96% mixed with coffee.

Shawn Kearney

Nov 11, 2016, 4:58 pm Reply

Thujone likely does not cause hallucinations, but it may reverse the sedative effects of ethanol. Because Ethanol is a strong GABA agonist as well as a weak NMDA antagonist, and Thujone is a strong GABA antagonist, it is plausible that more ethanol can be consumed allowing higher NMDA antagonism to exist.


Nov 11, 2016, 3:47 pm Reply

"hey there kids, let's talk about absinthe"

Duct Taped Goat

Nov 11, 2016, 6:37 pm Reply

here's the scoop

1 absinthe history lesson
Absinthe was criminalized from the dark ages through the Spanish inquisition, all original recipes were destroyed and individuals were killed who knew how to make it. thujone wormwood was not part of the original recipe, the version created today was the result of attempts to recreate the fabled drink.

2. thujone extract is a smokeable drug and it causes hallucinations.

so maybe next time you'll mention that Christianization during the DarkAges and Spanish Inquisition led to the destruction of hundreds of thousands of handwritten holistic and homeopathic medicine books.
As the nonBiblical books were burnt at the feet of the heretics while they were tied to trees, marking them as demons due to the disfigurement from the flames if they were lucky enough to even survive. this is also the story of the origination of the walking dead, or zombies, villages of disfigured people who put their faith in journalism and holistic medicines were the original zombies.

do a video about how Christianity is evil


Nov 11, 2016, 9:31 pm Reply

hey doesn't this sound quite familiar? ahhhh yes the bann on marijuana

Sean Payton

Nov 11, 2016, 8:01 am Reply

I had three shots of absinthe with about 5 shots of fireball and a quarter of a bottle of schnapps. I got kinda drunk but I was on a full stomach so it was like a medium buzz, and I only weigh 155 and don't drink very often. The absinthe I had was around 65%, and I believe it was Lucid. If you want to get fucked just drink a bottle of robitussin, have a couple shots, and take a couple dabs. If you're like me you'll have a pretty awesome trip, or you might just pass out and vomit in your sleep lmao.


Nov 11, 2016, 3:09 pm Reply

Shot absinthe, had a psychosis, almost killed myself.

10/10 would do again.


Nov 11, 2016, 11:25 pm Reply

I was really steamon and started drinking absinthe like fuck, Woke up with no memory of me getting home lol.


Nov 11, 2016, 2:46 pm Reply

it's so nice to be a witch.


Nov 11, 2016, 12:15 am Reply

If you shot thujon containing absinthe like an idiot, you will of course not feel the effects of thujon because the amount of alcohol is just too high. But if you respect the ritual, make yourself a nice drink (which should has about 17% alc.) . You will deffinitely feel the effects after like 2-3 drinks. It's really mellow, euphoric, comfy feeling. Little bit like weed high. Really pleasing 🙂 Also my tongue felt a little numb 😀 No visuals or other reality warping stuff. I wonder about higher dosage effects but I think this way the alcohol will be in the way everytime. What would the impresionist addicts say in their times ? 🙂

Stephen Horton

Nov 11, 2016, 8:02 pm Reply

You can buy 40% alcohol absinthe online which contains 35mg/kg thujone (if legal in your country) – lovely stuff – very herbally and bitter if you don't add sugar. It gives you a nice relaxed and laid back feeling 🙂


Nov 11, 2016, 2:32 am Reply

Absinthe is like a Jager gin. It tastes like ass if you drink it straight up. Absinthe diluted, never tried it. Supposedly, it tastes better, but idk.

Yorick G

Dec 12, 2016, 5:09 am Reply

Dude, Tunel brand goes up to 85% we dont delude shit up here in the Netherlands.
Tbh we can even purchase wormwood ect. legally and just ad extra which i did multiple times.
Yet i do have to sat you wont trip balls like on strong shrooms like Ecuadorians, also i still have both ears.

Paul Colburn

Jan 1, 2017, 6:49 pm Reply

Only in America can 55 to 75% alcohol be banned. I'll be sure to cry over this news while drinking a shot of 95% alcohol Everclear.

Jerr Bear

Feb 2, 2017, 8:50 am Reply

I thought the title said "Abstinence" LMAO

Waqas Rabbani

Feb 2, 2017, 12:14 pm Reply

that man who shot his family… didn't actually drink absinthe, by that time the french were producing millions of gallons of absinthe a year, so the really cheap stuff was made using chemicals and not the normal organic process.

those chemicals were poisonous, so basically, cheap absinthe was not real absinthe it was basically poison that was killing people and causing hallucinations.

Absinthe can't cause hallucinations. the dye material they added was a hallucinogen and a neurotoxin, though.

Biscuit Head

Feb 2, 2017, 11:14 am Reply

I've tried 4 different kinds and the king of absinthe taste like rubbing alcohol. 1 that turns white when water is added, which also sucked but my fab comes from France and I know won 2 place like 2+ years at the absinthe contest. le,fee or something like that or that might have been the white kind name it's been over 10 years since I had some

Annie Peterson

Mar 3, 2017, 3:31 pm Reply

Bullshit. I've seen absinthe in Scotland for sale over 90%.

DDF GhostHunting

Mar 3, 2017, 9:49 am Reply

I drink absinthe all the time but the one I drink is 89.9% an sadly never tripped.

Brad Davis

Mar 3, 2017, 5:47 pm Reply

my max alcohol blood content (abc ironically) was 0.42%. i may have surpassed that on occasions that i was not tested. however lower intake has on two occasions about twelve years apart sent me into a state of hallucination.

Paul Feist

Apr 4, 2017, 8:12 pm Reply

Ive had absinthe with Thujone in Germany. It was just like a very strong alcoholic licorice flavored green drink

Jason leal

Apr 4, 2017, 8:20 am Reply

I believe Absinthe was never officially banned in he US.

Pancho who

Apr 4, 2017, 3:56 am Reply

Absinthe is so week. Pathetic drug called alcohol.


May 5, 2017, 7:47 am Reply

Add 2ml of liquid psilocybin extract to some absinthe

JD Felder

May 5, 2017, 8:11 am Reply

when you have an absinthe video to make at 3 and a bowling team meeting at 4


May 5, 2017, 11:04 pm Reply

god I love videos like this, so interesting!


May 5, 2017, 6:05 am Reply

Drank about a bottle of some really old stuff in an upstairs bar in the mikasa mall in yokosuka japan. Did not halucinate but got incredibly wasted. Ate macdonalds after then passed out in an internet cafe. Best three day weekend ever.

Mark Jordan

May 5, 2017, 12:43 am Reply

The drunkest I've ever been was on absinthe. Never drank it again. Sneaks up on you quickly because one tends to drink it as fast as any mixed drink, which is pretty fast for those of us who drink!

Erick Lange

Jul 7, 2017, 9:32 pm Reply

I ran across this video today. Always good to bust myths from 1990s movies. This is good information. These are a couple of important points:When they tested pre-ban absinthe for thujone, though itself a chemical that is insignificant to the production or enjoyment of absinthe, it was determined that absinthe imported into and produced in the United States today contains roughly equal amounts of thujone as those pre-ban bottles and certainly less than the nutmeg in your spice cabinet. So sit back, sip your authentic absinthe, enjoy the profile of a particular batch, and let the misinformed worry about the myths.Just to be fair, if anyone does want to hallucinate from drinking "absinthe", they're going to have to travel back in time to buy the cheap fake stuff that was peddled to people who couldn't afford real absinthe. The swill, which bore no relation to absinthe, was colored with toxic chemicals like copper sulfate and antimony trichloride that drove vagrants and paupers mad and eventually killed them.

Kasper P

Aug 8, 2017, 2:50 pm Reply

Sukkel hert em

Kasper P

Aug 8, 2017, 2:50 pm Reply

Sukkel hert em

Telly Jr

Sep 9, 2017, 7:37 pm Reply

The stuff i'm trying now is 85 percent.

slam clown

Oct 10, 2017, 11:17 pm Reply

make you Absinthe at home the legal one is noting like the real

Ink Forged

Nov 11, 2017, 11:06 pm Reply

Absinthe is just alcohol, good fun haha.
However I was dared to do a absinthe mouthwash for 30 seconds, which left my mouth feeling like it had been burned by hot food for the next two days, so thats not reccomended hahaha


Nov 11, 2017, 1:05 am Reply

Who's here from nessboog?

Yung Kirk

Dec 12, 2017, 8:52 am Reply

Drink lean for the most lit experience of your life.


Dec 12, 2017, 8:14 pm Reply

I have a readily available absinthe with 80% ABV and no, it never made me, or anyone else hallucinate

Warren Kuntzmann

Dec 12, 2017, 12:52 pm Reply

Absinthe rocls


Dec 12, 2017, 11:58 pm Reply

I drank a bottle with a friend and I did experience…something. I thought I was Christopher Columbus and my crew was going to mutiny. I'm a huge lightweight though though, and it may have been a placebo affect. But I woke up to find my pants in the fridge. Idk what to think.

David Drvar

Dec 12, 2017, 3:00 pm Reply

2:35 thank me later

Alberto Grams

Dec 12, 2017, 3:39 am Reply

Took absinthe shots on fire straight was a good buzz melow as fuck tho didnt fuck my stomach up next day like most liquors🔥🔥


Dec 12, 2017, 5:43 am Reply

I had a shot of straight everclear once when i was already really drunk and it still burned like crazy


Dec 12, 2017, 6:00 pm Reply

I'm on my third glass of absinthe right now and my girlfriend is still alive. I bought it from a small town in Bosnia, says nothing about "thijone" but contains a recipe on the back for a drink called "death in the agternoon" basically its champagne and absinthe

Jeremy Gutridge

Jan 1, 2018, 2:49 am Reply

the best ever.

Joe Kennedy

Feb 2, 2018, 2:07 am Reply

Fuck I just spent a lot on some real wormwood stuff. It’s good but now I’m having buyers remorse.


Mar 3, 2018, 10:14 pm Reply

I drink Absinthe sometimes. I noticed that I have strange dreams the night after. maybe just the booze , Who knows.

Uni Firdavs

Mar 3, 2018, 6:24 am Reply

I like your shirt Sir ❤️

John Anderson

Apr 4, 2018, 3:05 pm Reply

quit drinking it because it will mess you up. alcohol can mess with your mind anyway. I just felt double the empathy on it. the hangover is days long. there is a good reason to avoid all alcohols. yes, shrooms weed, and dmt are everywhere around us. why get sick?

Mitchell Fite

May 5, 2018, 1:53 pm Reply

It tastes pretty good, especially good for how high proof it is

A Freeman

May 5, 2018, 7:44 am Reply

As you correctly said, Absinthe should be diluted. Sugar is commonly added according to taste to reduce bitterness.
Absinthe is OK and goes to the spot – but on taste alone, while I can find one glass enjoyable I would not care for a session of it.

Hunter Davis

May 5, 2018, 3:46 am Reply

True absinthe from 1905 had 100mg of thujone which is enough to hallucinate

Davey Wiles

May 5, 2018, 4:41 am Reply

smoke 100mg of dmt

Kevin Pippin

Jun 6, 2018, 4:06 pm Reply

The only affect your going to get from absinthe is from that high alcohol content that's it

Larry Johnston

Jun 6, 2018, 9:24 pm Reply

The old formula was said to do that, but who knows what was added to it!! That was 20s and the 30s!! Today's stuff is just basically flavored alcohol!! With the Food and Drug administration you couldn't get away with how they probably made it almost a century ago!! SO THE ANSWER IS NO!!

Larry Johnston

Jun 6, 2018, 9:27 pm Reply

And yes I would love to talk to a green fairy, clinically speaking ,I think it would be quite interesting!! Because every picture I've ever seen of the green fairy their pretty hot!! Of course it was the art nouveau period!!

Rusty Crestmore

Jun 6, 2018, 10:44 pm Reply

My friend was in Prague and said they put a drop of acid in the sugar cube.


Jul 7, 2018, 10:54 pm Reply

Thujon free in the u.s. is less then 10% so basically same as europe. I find it keeps you from getting to drunk. But drink enough and your toast.

H.L.A Solomonov

Sep 9, 2018, 9:01 am Reply

U wanna drink absinthe dont leave the door step.. Take it from me


Sep 9, 2018, 6:28 pm Reply

This is the best most relaxing video. Alcohol and psychedelics are like experimental and feel good combined.

Kelly Thiede

Sep 9, 2018, 3:12 am Reply

Noooo thujone in high doses is highly toxic and produces hallucinations and seizures. I'm living proof. I drank homemade absinthe (not made by me) in 2012, had a seizure and then proceeded to hallucinate for 5-6 months. I met the green faerie for half a year bro0o. Poison plants will fuck you up if they want to

Dean Shaw

Sep 9, 2018, 1:54 am Reply

i am sorry i like when humans pronounce the H in HERBS this baldy headed fudge packer trying to sound special just made me shut the video off


Nov 11, 2018, 5:03 pm Reply

Does Charley Sheen know yo raided his closet?


Nov 11, 2018, 5:10 am Reply

“Hello Kidz”

Jonathan Holleb

Dec 12, 2018, 7:59 am Reply

It certainly has effects…Hallucinations? No. But, it does effect the creative mind as far as writing js concerned. If you write sober or before having a few drinks…It is your typicalmsort of style. If you write after, at least in my experience, your wrting may take on a more prophetic or trippy sort of quality…This does not happen from drinking a gin & tonic or even smoking herb…So, does it have effects? Yes.

Laura Wallace

Feb 2, 2019, 3:31 am Reply

Drinking it right meow

ResidentEvil302cuba rican215

Mar 3, 2019, 4:08 am Reply

I always wanted 2 try absinthe

Prospector James Marshall

Mar 3, 2019, 4:47 am Reply

Im drinking the “Taboo” brand absinthe as I watch this. Distilled in BC Canada and absolutely delicious. I prepare it 1 part absinthe with 5 parts cold filtered water over the sugar cube and then stir it all together. This is good quality wormwood absinthe that CAN actually be drank and enjoyed


Apr 4, 2019, 4:29 pm Reply

Knew it, it's weird this is still such a common belief, I think it's cuz whenever nothing happens ppl blame it on the absinthe not being genuine. The buzz off such high proof alc is different enough from getting drunk on weaker alc that the placebo effect is enough to convince some ppl they're feeling the effects of a different substance. If u want a trip like the absinthe trip they show in movies get salvia or dmt

Nelida Lara

May 5, 2019, 8:07 am Reply

Absent was given to me as my first 21 birthday drink and I love it! 🤩

Devin Keefner

Jun 6, 2019, 7:15 am Reply

Ive had 3 different colors at 3 different potencies… just a different version of jager.

Mobile Chloroform

Jun 6, 2019, 5:11 pm Reply

I drove two cases from Maine to California in 1969 to sell and trade. It was smuggled into Somerset County from Quebec City. I only drank what was offered from my customers. Very very tactile top of head pins and needles but no true hallucinations that I remember.


Jun 6, 2019, 5:52 pm Reply

If you wanna have stronger psychoactive feelings, buy artemisia and some strong alcohol, mix 100g of artemisia with 1000ml of alcohol, let it rest for some days
Drink a glass from it

MGTOW Properties

Jun 6, 2019, 6:27 pm Reply

I’m surprise he didn’t die from alcohol poisoning that and he was able to move Alone Kill someone


Jun 6, 2019, 8:15 am Reply

Okay. It's true. The buzz I feel from sipping regular booze (even tequila) is by far DIFFERENT. I'm not a 'drinker' but, by gawd, THIS is a different kinda buzz! I'll try it again, next year! Hoooweee!!!

Aarron Whitelaw

Jun 6, 2019, 8:35 pm Reply

Pussys ma pal tanned a bottle of the cannabis one last night n 6 pills😂

Cj Vic

Jun 6, 2019, 9:45 pm Reply

Did he just call me a kid?


Aug 8, 2019, 1:09 pm Reply

You should remove this video, study a bit more, write to some absinthe distillers and have another go at putting in some real info. Joke

Teck Rylee

Sep 9, 2019, 9:09 pm Reply

Type in absinthe nothing comes up type in hallucination videos with absinthe in title pop up hhhmmmm


Sep 9, 2019, 7:47 pm Reply

I was hallucinating about bowling.

Aaron Weaver

Oct 10, 2019, 10:54 pm Reply

Who the fuck puts water in alcohol. I drank 100 proof alcohol all the time. Whats the difference

Lynn Marie Bridges

Oct 10, 2019, 10:29 am Reply

Drinking absinthe right now! In Arkansas, US btw


Nov 11, 2019, 5:03 pm Reply

Had absinthe in the Czech Republic 14 years ago. That stuff had nothing left out at all, and max thujone content. 5 minutes later, words started coming out of me that were not my own, it was freaking horrible. I didn't hallucinate but I was not in a good place. Not even that drunk, just a total personality shift I have no desire to revisit.

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