Is Kratom Legal in South Carolina? Where to Buy Locally & Online

More people discover kratom every day and want to experience its health benefits but are unsure about the legal status where they live.

Luckily for South Carolinians, there are no restrictions on kratom in the state, and there are no signs of upcoming changes to legislation.

If you live in South Carolina, you can enjoy the many benefits of kratom without running afoul of the law.

This guide will help you navigate the process of buying kratom in South Carolina, covering online shopping, places to buy kratom in-person, and how to use kratom safely. There is also a section outlining common uses for kratom and which types of kratom are best for each purpose. 

Is Kratom Legal in South Carolina?

Yes, kratom is legal everywhere in South Carolina, including all major cities.

Other states have put varying degrees of regulation on kratom use from total bans to age restrictions, but in South Carolina, kratom remains wholly legal and unregulated.

Kratom is experiencing a surge in popularity as more people learn about using kratom to treat various conditions (more on that later), leading some states to consider legislation due to kratom’s similarities to more dangerous substances.

There are currently no upcoming bills proposing kratom regulations in South Carolina, so it seems as though it will remain legal, at least for the foreseeable future.

Learn more about kratom laws in the United States.

The historical downtown area of  Charleston, South Carolina, USA
Charleston, South Carolina, USA

Where to Buy Kratom in South Carolina

Purchasing kratom can be divided into two main categories: buying online and buying in a local retailer.

Overall, buying online is typically the better option for a variety of reasons, but the following sections will cover tips for both online shopping and buying kratom in person.

Buying Kratom Online

Online kratom shoppers enjoy several significant luxuries not afforded to in-person shoppers. Buying kratom online is safer, more affordable, and offers a broader range of products that can be found in even the best local shops.

Shopping Online Lets You Check Third-Party Lab Tests

Your number one concern when buying kratom should be quality and safety.

Unfortunately, many shady companies market their kratom as pure and high-quality when, in reality, they are selling low-quality kratom cut with other possibly dangerous substances.

Many online kratom retailers — like VIP Kratom and Kona Kratom — put their products through rigorous third-party testing to ensure it is pure and potent. Buying kratom from a reputable online vendor guarantees that you can trust the quality and potency on the label.

Ordering Kratom Online is Cheaper

Counterintuitively, buying kratom from an online vendor is cheaper than buying it in a local store, even though online shops tend to have higher quality kratom.

Online retailers work directly with manufacturers, allowing them to purchase kratom at wholesale discounts and turn a profit while selling their products at a reasonable price. Online kratom shops also don’t have to manage their inventory to make room for non-kratom products the way a small local shop would, further improving their margins.

Related: What’s The Cheapest Kratom? Save Money On Strains, Blends, and Bulk Orders.

Online Shops Have A Larger Selection of Strains

Another big advantage of buying kratom online is the selection. Local retailers can only carry so many kratom products, limiting them to offer the most popular items. Online kratom retailers are more focused and can stock an impressive number of kratom products since they don’t need to manage shelf space or worry about freshness.

You’ll Have to Wait For Shipping

There is one major drawback to buying kratom online, and that is shipping times.

If speed is your number one concern, you should look into buying kratom in person. Online shopping will always have more delay than buying in-person, but some online vendors, most notably Star Kratom, make it their business to minimize shipping and processing times.

If you can afford to wait a bit but still want to get your kratom quickly, Star Kratom is the way to go.

Buying Kratom In-Store: Kratom Shops in South Carolina

The other option is to search out local businesses that sell kratom and shop the old-fashioned way. As discussed in the previous section, buying kratom from a local retailer is the best option if you can’t afford to wait, but keep in mind you’ll have a smaller selection to choose from and will wind up paying more for a lesser product.

Your best bet for purchasing kratom in person will be local smoke shops. Many tobacco stores also carry related products like vape pens, CBD, and kratom. Sometimes these stores don’t keep their inventory on a website, so be sure to call them and ask specifically about kratom before making the trip.

Below are a few of the most popular places to buy kratom in South Carolina.

The Bizarre Bazaar Smoke Shop

Located in Columbia, The Bizarre Bazaar is one of the cleanest and most well-organized smoke shops around. Their staff is accommodating and helpful, and they sell a small selection of kratom products.

Columbia Kratom

Columbia Kratom is a rarity among local shops in that they are kratom-focused. They have an impressive selection for a physical store, and their staff is keen to answer customer questions. You can find them in Lexington. 

Charleston Kratom & CBD

This Summerville shop primarily features kratom and CBD products and is staffed by friendly, knowledgeable people. Their kratom selection is extensive, and their prices are fair.

Purple Haze Smoke Shop

Unlike the previous two retailers, Purple Haze Smoke Shop is an all-purpose store selling tobacco products, kratom, and CBD. They have a moderately sized kratom section, but their prices tend to be somewhat expensive. They are located in Columbia.

Smoke ‘n Brew

Smoke n’ Brew is a tobacco shop in Greenville that also has a small kratom section. They have reasonable prices, and the employees are courteous and attentive.

What To Look For When Buying Kratom

There are a few things you must know before you purchase kratom. The next several sections cover choosing the right kind of kratom for you and information about finding a reputable kratom seller.

Strain Selection

Kratom comes in several different varieties that offer distinct experiences. Choosing the right kind of kratom for your desired effect is essential to ensure you have a pleasant and effective experience.

There are three main kratom strains white vein, red vein, and green vein, which are summarized below.

White Vein Kratom

White-vein kratom has a stimulating effect, making its users feel energetic and focused. There is some anecdotal evidence that white strains improve general cognitive performance and memory, but more rigorous clinical studies are needed to confirm such claims. Most white-vein users compare its effects to caffeine and recommend taking it early in the day.

Red Vein Kratom

At the opposite end of the kratom spectrum sits red-vein kratom. Rather than providing an energy boost like white-vein kratom, red-vein has a mellowing effect that makes users feel relaxed and at ease. Red strains of kratom are most commonly used for pain relief and are most often taken at night.

Green Vein Kratom

Green-vein kratom offers a middle ground between the red and white-vein varieties many people see as the best-of-both-worlds option. It won’t make you quite as energetic as white-vein kratom and instead gives users a calmer, smoother experience without any jitters.

Look For AKA Certification

Before ordering kratom online or buying it in a store, check to see if the company you’re considering is certified by the American Kratom Association (AKA).

The AKA conducts background tests and quality verification on kratom retailers to ensure their products match their claims.

Once a company obtains AKA certification, it must go through yearly audits to demonstrate its kratom’s quality continues to meet AKA expectations.

Buying kratom from an AKA-certified vendor is a bit like purchasing a new car from an authorized company while buying from a kratom retailer without AKA certification is akin to purchasing a used car from a random stranger.

Most people recommend only buying kratom from AKA-certified businesses.

Unfortunately for people who prefer shopping in physical stores, many local kratom shops lack AKA certification.

Online stores are more often AKA certified because they produce it themselves or purchase their kratom in bulk directly from the manufacturer.

Local shops usually sell another company’s kratom, making it difficult to identify the source and, therefore, impossible to verify quality and purity claims.

Company Reputation

Besides looking for AKA certification, you should also do your own due diligence by performing background checks on the kratom vendors you’re considering. Performing a Google search and reading as many reviews as you can find is a great way to learn about a company’s reputation. People don’t hesitate to air their grievances, so checking reviews will reveal a company’s shortcomings and problems.

It is a good idea to start your background check by perusing our compilation of kratom vendor reviews.

What Are People Using Kratom For?

Kratom has many uses and health benefits overall, but certain strains are more suited to treating some conditions than others.

Below you’ll find a brief overview of kratom’s most popular uses and some general strain recommendations for each.

Kratom For Pain

Relieving chronic pain is one of the most common uses for kratom — red-vein kratom specifically. Kratom functions similarly to opioids by blocking pain signals before they reach the brain. Depending on the severity of pain and the dose, kratom can be an effective pain-reliever and help chronic pain sufferers manage their condition without resorting to dangerous painkillers.

Many common painkillers come with a frightening list of side effects and are highly addictive. Kratom has fewer and less severe side effects than those medications but also isn’t as potent. Choosing the right kratom strain for pain relief can help give you the best results.

Kratom For Anxiety & Depression

Another common use for kratom is treating anxiety and depression. Instances of anxiety and depression are increasing globally, and more people get diagnosed each year and require medication to manage their conditions.

Unfortunately, many medications used to treat anxiety and depression don’t work for everyone and come with a long list of side effects.

Some strains of white-vein and green-vein kratom offer people with anxiety and depression an alternative to traditional medication that doesn’t have nearly as many side effects yet works as good or better.

Kratom For Opiate Withdrawal

Due to the chemical similarities between kratom and opioids, kratom may be used to treat opiate withdrawal. Red-vein kratom helps people manage pain, one of the most difficult aspects of opioid withdrawal to overcome.

Kratom is less potent with milder effects than opiates, making it useful for gradually weaning people off of both legal and illicit opiates.

Compared to quitting cold turkey, people who replace opiate use with kratom are less likely to relapse and return to abusing opioids.

Related: How to use kratom to support opiate withdrawal.

Kratom For Energy & Focus

A less common use of white and green strains is as an energy enhancer.

White strains are especially adept at making people feel alert and focused, while green strains provide a more calm, subtle boost. Green and white kratom may improve cognitive performance and memory, although there is little hard evidence supporting those claims.

Choosing a strain to improve energy and focus requires a bit more experimentation than other uses since how much of an energy boost someone is looking for can vary a lot. 

Is Kratom Safe?

Like many things, moderation and careful monitoring are necessary to use kratom safely. Limiting your dose size to between 1 g and 12 g is the best way to ensure you have a pleasant experience with kratom.

Taking more than 12 g is a surefire way to experience some undesirable side effects.

Kratom can be addictive if you use it in high doses on a regular basis — albeit much milder than the addictive substances commonly prescribed for managing pain.

Experts recommend limiting weekly kratom use to only 4 or 5 days. It is also recommended for regular users to take a break every 1 to 2 months.

Side Effects of Kratom

Almost universally, kratom’s unpleasant side effects are only experienced by people taking more than 5g. Here are a few of the most common side effects of kratom and how to avoid them.

Tiredness & Fatigue

An uncommon but concerning side effect experienced by some kratom users is excessive tiredness. It can be difficult to notice unusual lethargy since red-vein kratom has a relaxing effect, but it is important to pay attention and look for signs of higher-than-normal amounts of sleepiness. Systemic tiredness can be a result of taking kratom too often for too long and is a sign that you need to take a break.

Stress & Anxiety

Although kratom can be used to treat anxiety, in large doses, it can make anxiety worse. Most people who take 5g or fewer won’t experience kratom-induced anxiety. If you’re concerned about kratom increasing your anxiety, make sure to stay on the safe side and start by taking only 2g.

Stomach Pain & Indigestion

Some people report feeling sick and nauseous from taking kratom, especially when taking more than 5g. Sticking to smaller doses is the best way to avoid stomach problems from kratom.

Dizziness

Another common side effect in people taking larger doses is vertigo or dizziness. Kratom affects hormone levels and can alter epinephrine levels in your body, causing you to feel dizzy and light-headed. If you feel dizzy after taking kratom, you should reduce your dose size.

Brain Fog & Difficulty Concentrating

Mental sluggishness and a foggy head is an exceptionally rare side effect of kratom experienced almost exclusively in users taking more than 10g.

What’s The Future of Kratom in South Carolina?

Kratom is currently legal in South Carolina, and its future looks stable within state lines.

There is currently no state legislation being considered limiting or regulating kratom in any way, and it is legal to purchase and consume everywhere in the state.

Other states have banned or regulated kratom, but so far, there is no federal motion to make kratom illegal country-wide.

As such, South Carolina’s supportive approach is unlikely to be interrupted by federal intervention either.