Study shows the typical marijuana smoker works full-time and is educated. 15 percent make over $100,000

As the push for marijuana legalization grows, Cheech and Chong are no longer the typical user — and maybe never were.

Typical cannabis users are high school or college educated, spend less than $50 a month to smoke, and work a full-time job, says a new study from, an online publication focused on the discussion around marijuana use.

“There will be the college guys,” says Derek Riedle, the publisher and founder of “But there will also be more older family folks that accept this as part of their lifestyles.”

That backs up recent research from Quest Diagnostics. As High Times points out, “Colorado and Washington, the country’s first two states to establish a system that allows adults to buy weed in a manner similar to beer, have experienced significant increases in workers testing positive for THC,” its active ingredient.

Civilized, in partnership with Washington-based research firm PSB, conducted online interviews with 220 American weed smokers and 780 nonusers, as well as 108 Canadian users and 492 nonusers between the ages of 19 and 65, about how they use cannabis.

The biggest demographic of smokers interviewed was older millennials — between the ages of 25 and 34.

Users are educated

Pot smokers are not high school dropouts — the majority of users in the study have a postsecondary degree. In the U.S., 26 percent of users surveyed have a high school degree and 22 percent have a bachelor’s.

Some users went even further in their studies — 14 percent of U.S. users said they went on to receive their master’s or doctorate, while six percent of users said they have little to no high school education.

Among non-users, 37 percent said they received a high school diploma with 20 percent receiving a bachelor’s degree. Ten percent went on to receive a master’s or doctorate, according to the study.

Users work

Weed smokers might be educated but they’re still lazy, right? Wrong.

Of the American in the study, 51 percent said they are working more than 30 hours a week, compared to 32 percent of nonusers. Outside of the workforce, 29 percent of American users interviewed said they were retired, while 26 percent of non-users responded the same.

On the pay scale, 23 percent of users said they made less than $25,000 last year before taxes, just one percent more than the American nonusers interviewed. At the other end, 15 percent of American users interviewed said they make more than $100,000 before taxes, compared to 13 percent among non-users.

So how much of that income is going towards lighting up? Not a lot. About half (48 percent) in the study said they spend less than $50 a month, which is roughly equal to 10 packs of cigarettes a month.

There are some big spenders, with 21 percent saying they spend between $100 and $200, and 8 percent saying they spend more than $200 monthly.

“People use it to sand the edges off of a rough day just like a beer,” Riedle says. “They’re older, wealthier, and much more active than society really understands.”

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Gregory Cox

Gregory Cox


Cox is a freelance writer for



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Article last modified on June 27, 2017 Published by, LLC . Mobile users may also access the AMP Version: Breaking The Stoner Stereotype  - AMP.