Illicit substance use is dangerous in both acute and chronic forms, frequently resulting in lethal poisoning, addiction, and other negative consequences. Similar to research in other psychiatric conditions, whose ultimate goal is to enable effective prevention and treatment, studies in substance use are focused on factors elevating the risk for the disorder. The rapid growth of the substance use problem despite the effort invested in fighting it, however, suggests the need in changing the research approach. Instead of attempting to identify risk factors, whose neutralization is often infeasible if not impossible, it may be more promising to systematically reverse the perspective to the factors enhancing the aspect of liability to disorder that shares the same dimension but is opposite to risk, that is, resistance to substance use. Resistance factors, which enable the majority of the population to remain unaffected despite the ubiquity of psychoactive substances, may be more amenable to translation. While the resistance aspect of liability is symmetric to risk, the resistance approach requires substantial changes in sampling (high-resistance rather than high-risk) and using quantitative indices of liability. This article provides an overview and a practical approach to research in resistance to substance use/addiction, currently implemented in a NIH-funded project. The project benefits from unique opportunities afforded by the data originating from two longitudinal twin studies, the Virginia Twin Study of Adolescent and Behavioral Development and the Minnesota Twin Family Study. The methodology described is also applicable to other psychiatric disorders.