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The nicotine drug test is a common test when you apply for life insurance – the insurance company needs to know if you’re a smoker or do drugs. Both situations would either leave you with much higher insurance premiums or a declined application, neither of which you likely want.

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If this sounds familiar, you want a quick way to get the toxic chemicals out of your system. But is it even possible to get nicotine or drugs out of your system that fast?

It’s crazy, but here’s how you can make it happen.

How Long Does Nicotine Stays in Your System

Before you take a nicotine drug test or try to pass it quickly, you should know how long nicotine stays in your system.

Since insurance companies can check your nicotine levels in multiple ways, it’s important to know how long they can detect it in your urine, blood, saliva, and hair.

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Nicotine stays in your urine for up to 4 days, blood for 3 days, saliva and hair for 4 days. But, your body composition plays a role in how long your body holds onto nicotine too. If you are heavier, your body will hold onto the nicotine longer.

There’s an even graver danger, though – cotinine. This isn’t a chemical most people talk about, but it’s another chemical that enters your system that, if life insurance companies test for it, can detect even longer.

And to settle any debate, smoking or vaping both leave the same amount of nicotine for the same amount of time in your body.

How to Cheat the Nicotine Drug Test

So here’s what you want to know.

How do I cheat the nicotine drug test?

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The easiest way is to quit smoking. But if you are a habitual smoker, this could take weeks or even months and probably isn’t what you have in mind.

If that’s not an option, here are a few ways to cheat a nicotine drug urine test:

  • Drink a detox drink – The detox drink only works for a few hours, so only drink it right before you know you’ll take the test. The drink flushes your bladder of the toxins, but only the toxins in your bladder immediately. As your body processes the nicotine and it metabolizes, more will leak into your bladder within the next few hours.
  • Take a detox pill – If you have more time, consider detoxing naturally by exercising hard (sweating a lot), eating only plant-based natural foods, and taking a detox pill. This process won’t be working 24 hours or even a few days, though. You need at least a week for it to work.

If your insurance company requires a blood, hair, or saliva test, you may have a tougher time cheating on the nicotine drug test.

There’s good news, though.

Nicotine and cotinine stay in your blood for no more than 3 days unless you are a rare exception. While you can take detox pills to try to eliminate it faster, it usually doesn’t work. Your best bet is to stop smoking for at least 3 days before a blood test to pass it or hope that the 3-day trick is right and your levels are low or non-existent.

Most insurance companies won’t do a saliva test because they know it’s easy to cheat. If your insurance company uses the saliva test or you’re worried they will simply brush your teeth multiple times a day and use a mouthwash to neutralize your saliva. You can even do this on the test day and possibly still pass.

Now for the bad news.

The hair follicle test is the hardest to cheat in, and it’s the most common test.

Fortunately, by law, insurance companies can only test the first 1 ½ inches of your newest hair growth. Since nicotine stays in your ‘old hair’ for up to 90 days, it wouldn’t be a fair test. But even in your newest hair, it sticks around, and the only way to get rid of it is a detox wash with expensive products for several days.

Final Thoughts

You may not be able to pass a nicotine drug test in 24 hours, but with enough notice, you could get it out of your system quickly. It depends on the type of test your insurance company would perform.

The key is to have the right products ready or, better yet – stop smoking for a couple of weeks if possible. If that’s not possible, a detox gives you the best chance at passing the test or at having as little nicotine in your system as possible.

With lower nicotine levels, you may stand a chance at securing life insurance at affordable rates. Insurance companies rate you based on your risk level – higher nicotine levels increase your risk level and, therefore, your premiums. Doing what you can to lower those levels could save you money and get you better life insurance.


Meet Aaron H., a senior life insurance agent from California with 15+ years of experience. With a major in finance, excellent analytical and communication skills, and a passion for helping clients find personalized solutions, Aaron is a trusted advisor in the industry. He stays up-to-date on the latest trends and developments by attending webinars and workshops, reading industry blogs, and writing informative blog posts on this website. Aaron also has a keen understanding of SEO and online marketing, which he uses to help his clients reach a wider audience and get the coverage they need. He cherishes spending quality time with his wife, two children, and elder parents.