How to select the best quality nootropic supplement for the lowest price is a question that comes up a lot here on Nootropics Expert.
In this post I’ll outline my criteria and the way other experienced neurohackers decide which company to trust.
Choosing a reputable supplement manufacturer is NOT the same as knowing which supplement to buy.
Deciding which nootropic supplement is best for you and your condition is covered in depth throughout Nootropics Expert.
So please use the search function top right for issues like; anxiety, Alzheimer’s, depression, Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI), PTSD, ADHD, OCD, memory and more.
If you are new to nootropics, one of the simplest ways to get started is selecting a quality pre-made nootropic stack. From a trusted manufacturer.
You will find in-depth reviews on Nootropics Expert for pre-made stacks that I’ve tested and use every day. You may want to consider them as well.
My favorite is Mind Lab Pro® and the Performance Lab® line of supplements.
Once you find a reputable company it makes it simple if you want to try another supplement in their line.
So I use the same selection criteria for choosing nootropic or dietary supplements not made by Mind Lab Pro® or Performance Lab®. An evaluation method that can work for any supplement manufacturer anywhere in the world.
This post is about evaluating company reputation, reliability and trustworthiness.
Let’s get started …
Table of Contents
One of the first things to consider is how long the company has been in business.
The UK-based company Mind Lab Pro® has been making quality supplements for several years. NOW Foods was founded by Elwood Richard in 1962 in Elmhurst, Illinois. Swanson Vitamins began in Fargo, ND in 1969 by Leland Swanson.
This is critical because the dietary supplement market is growing like crazy. And anyone with $5,000 can start a supplement company and start turning out bottles of product.
Once you find a nootropic you’d like to try, find the company website and click on their “About Us” tab. The page should show who founded the company, when it was started, where their supplements are made, testing procedures and more.
A manufacturer who has been making supplements for at least several years is a sign they know what they’re doing.
But it’s no guarantee!
For example, Centrum multivitamins are manufactured by the giant pharmaceutical company Pfizer who started business in 1849. But their multis are purely synthetic chemicals that are not as helpful to your body as natural or nature-identical ingredients.
So company history is just the first step.
The next thing I look for is what other people think of the company. And today, it’s easier than at any time in history to quickly find out.
A quick Google search will reveal either good things, or lawsuits by the FDA or customers for bad product, contaminated supplements, or adulteration with illegal ingredients.
Forums often show up on the first page of a Google search. With threads loaded with negative comments if the company is to be avoided.
If you are using reviews to judge a company or product, find a website other than the manufacturer’s site for trustworthiness.
If it’s Amazon reviews, look for “verified purchase” beside the reviewer’s name. Because sometimes unscrupulous companies will offer free product in return for a 5-star review.
Bloggers will often review supplements in return for an affiliate commission. Which is fine. But check out the comments section below the blog post to find out what readers are saying about that supplement or company.
Getting what you pay for is turning out the be a bigger challenge than it should.
Because even big-name brands like drug store chains, large retailers, supermarket chains and others are selling ‘private label’ brands of supplements.
A drug store is in the business of selling prescription drugs and other goods. And quality supplements are not exactly a priority. As proven by the New York Attorney General in 2015. Who ordered GNC, Target, Walgreens and Walmart to stop selling some of their dietary supplements.[i]
See my post “7 Tips for Choosing the Highest Quality Nootropic Supplements” for more on avoiding low quality or fraudulent supplements.
A reputable company will clearly show on their website what types of testing they have in place. To ensure you are getting exactly what you are paying for.
Once you have located the company website, go to their “Contact Us” page. Ensure the company has a physical address and not some Delaware or Las Vegas P.O. Box address.
The same page should have a customer service phone number, email address and possibly even a live chat button. So you know the company is easy to contact and you can talk to, email or chat with a real, live person if you have questions.
What type of guarantee does the company offer? If you are genuinely not satisfied with their supplement for some reason, do they offer a moneyback or replacement guarantee?
Supplementing with nootropics can get expensive very quickly. Especially as you gain more experience and begin adding more and more ingredients to your stack.
Naturally, most of us look for a bargain and search for the best price we can find on each supplement.
Pre-formulated nootropic stacks can help reduce your monthly cost. Economies of scale allow supplement companies who buy raw ingredients in bulk to price a combined supplement for less cost.
I know that Mind Lab Pro® and the Performance Lab® line of supplements uses top quality ingredients. And sells them at the lowest price they can.
NOW Foods has a company policy of offering their products 25 – 30% less than their competitors. And still provide top-quality supplements. Swanson Vitamins has a similar policy.
But if you are buying individual supplements or even some pre-formulated nootropic stacks. And find a price that is considerably lower than what the original company is selling their product. Or other vendors are pricing the same product.
You can be sure that the supplement is almost certainly counterfeit. Or someone is using a well-known supplement company label on inferior product. Or something else entirely is in that bottle of supplements.
Investing in nootropic supplements for brain health and optimization is one of the best investments you can make.
A little common sense, reading the reviews of other experienced neurohackers, and doing some research will help you keep your monthly cost of nootropic supplements down.
And ensure you are getting what you pay for.
As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. This post may also contain other affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my links.
Doug Reardon says
Where can i purchase Alpha GPC without soy —-is ALPHASIZE GPC without soy and if so where can i purchase it….
David Tomen says
Doug, Alphasize is made from soy lecithin according the manufacturer’s website. The only brand made from sunflower lecithin I’ve been able to find is this one: https://geni.us/wmzxmqq (Amazon).
Arthur Yaghjian says
Do you have an opinion on Sibelius Sage Extract?
David Tomen says
Arthur, I have not done any research on sage as a nootropic. But I do know that it is an acetylcholinesterase inhibitor which will increase acetylcholine use in your brain.
One study (https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16205785/) that sage used at a lower dose reduced anxiety and the higher dose increased ‘alertness’, ‘calmness’ and ‘contentedness’.
Arthur Yaghjian says
I would like to purchase Phosphatidylserine in powder. I did research on different sites looking for P.S. in powder. The only site I could find that has it in powder is Cerebra-Nootropics which is located in Netherlands. I was trying to find out as much information as possible about this site to determine the nootropic company reputation. The only thing I could find out about this site is address, email address and information about two guys who’re running this site. Nor I could find anything about testing the products. So I sent this company a message asking them for a phone number and the history of their site-like when it was established? In a couple of days I got an email from them saying that they do not offer a phone service and that they were founded in 2019 and that they’re very new company. When I did research about this company it seems that they know a lot about nootropics. I went to google to find out reviews about them, but I couldn’t find anything except that they’re a new company. I was thinking of asking them for Certificate of Analyses for P.S. but then I thought it’s so easy to make a fake one.
David what else do you think should I do?
Do you know any other companies where I can purchase Phosphatidylserine in powder?
Any advice would be greatly appreciated.
David Tomen says
Mick, the only company I can vouch for for phosphatidylserine in powder form is Bulk Supplements: https://amzn.to/3jlK9tI. I know they have a comprehensive testing program and will supply a CofA if you ask them.
Thanks David for the tip,
Bulk Supplements does have good prices and they can provide CofA.
I usually take 100% Phosphatidylserine. But at Bulk Supplements Per serving, this powder contains 21% L-α-Phosphatidyl-L-serine, 5% L-α-Phosphatidic acid, 5% L-α-Phosphatidylcholine, 7% L-α-Phosphatidylethanolamine, and 4% L-α-Phosphatidylinositol.
Is this as good as 100% Phosphatidylserine?
Will I feel the same benefits?
David Tomen says
Mick, I think that Bulk Supplements are just being more transparent about what’s in their supplement. The PS sold by other manufacturers very likely originates from the same plant in China. And chances are they bought the bulk powder from Bulk Supplements.
Mr. Tomen, do you have any experience with the company “Antiagingcentral”?
David Tomen says
Ish, I don’t know anything about this company. Follow the guidelines in this post so you can judge whether they’re any good.
I live in Queensland, Australia, on the east coast in a city called Brisbane. There is a site, I think to purchase from, they are in Perth on the opposite coastline in Western Australia.
The company’s name is CYOS.com or Create Your Own Supplement, their site is reasonably stocked with a variety of products. Can you please review them as I think they may be helpful for the Nootropics people on here, they offer bulk sizes and prices and you can make your own supplement as is the title of their trading name.
David another question, I have not seen any literature you’ve written on Modafinil and Adrafinil, do you review these products, what are your thoughts.
Respect and Thanks,
David Tomen says
Jay, thanks for giving out Aussie readers the headsup on the Perth company. I haven’t written about Modafinil or Adrafinil because my goal has been to stay as ‘natural’ as I can when it comes to nootropic supplements.
Nootropics Expert has readers from all over the world. And I want people empowered to know they can fix their brain issues by using supplements that can be purchased easily and locally in most cases.