mind lab pro vs modafinil

Mind Lab Pro vs Modafinil: A Comprehensive Comparison for Cognitive Enhancement

David Tomen
David Tomen
10 minute read

As the popularity of nootropics for cognitive enhancement continues to grow, two products have stood out among the competition: Mind Lab Pro® and Modafinil.

Both have impressive reputations in the world of cognitive enhancers, but how do they stack up against each other?

In this comprehensive comparison of “mind lab pro vs modafinil”, we’ll explore the pros, cons, and my personal experience with both Mind Lab Pro® and Modafinil to help you make an informed decision on which one is right for you.

Overview of Mind Lab Pro and Modafinil

Mind Lab Pro® is a natural nootropic supplement designed to enhance brain function and improve cognitive performance. This nootropic formula contains a blend of 11 natural ingredients, targeting 6 brain pathways and boosting overall cognitive enhancement.

On the other hand, Modafinil (brand name Provigil® and Nuvigil®) is a pharmaceutical smart drug and approved for the treatment of narcolepsy, sleep work shift disorder, and obstructive sleep apnea.[i]

As a prescription medication, Modafinil has a half-life of 12-15 hours which is considerably longer compared to Mind Lab Pro®.[ii]

Modafinil is a weak dopamine reuptake inhibitor and elevates concentrations of norepinephrine and serotonin in the prefrontal cortex and hypothalamus.[iii] It also increases signaling of histamine pathways and may also affect the use of glutamate in the brain.

  • Best for natural cognitive enhancement: Mind Lab Pro®
  • Best for alertness and focus: Modafinil

mind lab pro vs modafinilDetailed Review of Mind Lab Pro

Price: $69.99 per bottle (60 capsules)

Pros of Mind Lab Pro

  • The Supplement Facts label details the exact amount of each ingredient – no Proprietary Formulas!
  • Vegan natural NutriCaps® capsules
  • BioActive NutriGenesis® B-Vitamins (P-5-P, methyl-folate, and methylcobalamin)
  • No additives or toxic “other ingredients”
  • Tested prior to encapsulation for allergens, GMOs, microbes, pesticides, and herbicides
  • Batches are re-tested to confirm potency, purity, and activity after encapsulation
  • Designed to improve brain energy, mood, memory, focus, and concentration
  • Contains 11 research-backed ingredients
  • Natural and safe for long-term use

Cons of Mind Lab Pro

  • More expensive than some competitors
  • Some ingredients may be underdosed for some users

Mind Lab Pro® aims to enhance cognitive performance and optimize brain function, focusing on various cognitive functions, including memory, attention, and brain energy.

Its blend of 11 distinct ingredients works synergistically to improve brain energy, increase brain blood flow, boost brain waves, supports neurotransmitters including acetylcholine, dopamine, norepinephrine, and GABA.

Mind Lab Pro® also helps with brain regeneration and maintenance and provides long-term neuroprotection for as long as you use the supplement.

Mind Lab Pro®  stands out as a premium nootropic stack and sells for more compared to other nootropic supplements.

But those who use Mind Lab Pro® say that this pre-made stack is worth every penny. Because it works.

Mind Lab Pro® continues to be a favored choice for those in search of an effective and science-backed natural nootropic supplement.

Personal Experience with Mind Lab Pro

I have been using Mind Lab Pro® every day for the last 8 years. I typically take two capsules in the morning, along with a tablespoon of unrefined coconut oil to boost bioavailability.

Mind Lab Pro® is the base of my nootropic regimen. And combined with Vitamin D, DHA (Omega-3), my Performance Lab® NutriGenesis Multi and additional tyrosine helps me put in a long day of writing and interacting with my community.

The combination of these supplements has significantly improved my mood and productivity.

Other users have reported similar improvements, including:

Mind Lab Pro® has sold well over one million bottles of this pre-made nootropic stack worldwide, and consistently gets high ratings and positive reviews.

Try: Mind Lab Pro®

modafinil - prescription stimulantDetailed Review of Modafinil

Price: Varies (prescription medication)


  • Potent wakefulness-promoting effects
  • Enhances focus and productivity


  • Requires a prescription from your doctor
  • Potential side effects

Modafinil, a prescription medication used to treat sleep disorders, has gained a reputations as a cognitive enhancer because of its potent wakefulness-promoting benefits.

Unlike Mind Lab Pro®, Modafinil has a more focused scope of benefits including more alertness, focus, and wakefulness.

Its efficacy in delivering these benefits is well-documented, making it an attractive option for those seeking a pharmaceutical solution to enhance cognitive performance.

Yet, Modafinil has its disadvantages. Because it’s a smart drug, you’ll need a valid prescription from a healthcare professional, making it less accessible than over-the-counter nootropic supplements such as Mind Lab Pro®.

Also, side effects like insomnia, headaches, and nausea associated with Modafinil might discourage some prospective users.

Pros of Modafinil

Modafinil (Provigil®) was originally developed in France in the 1970’s for the treatment of narcolepsy. It is currently approved by the US FDA for the treatment of narcolepsy, shift-work disorder, and obstructive sleep apnea.

Modafinil elevates histamine levels in the hypothalamus region of your brain.[iv] (This is why ‘antihistamines’ produce drowsiness).

Modafinil also binds to the dopamine transporter. And acts as a dopamine reuptake inhibitor (similar to methylphenidate).[v] Which increases dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin in the prefrontal cortex.

Modafinil produces a unique mechanism of action in the brain compared to other stimulant drugs.

It enhances the efficiency of prefrontal cortex information processing which affects executive function and working memory. While reducing reactivity to fear stimuli in the amygdala (the brain region involved in anxiety).[vi]

Cons of Modafinil

Despite its impressive cognitive benefits, Modafinil does have some drawbacks.

As a prescription medication, it can be more challenging to obtain than over-the-counter nootropic supplements like Mind Lab Pro®. Modafinil may also cause side effects, such as insomnia, headaches, and nausea.

There is also evidence suggesting that Modafinil may have a negative effect on creativity, because it reduces convergent thinking and divergent thinking, both of which are required for creative thinking.

Personal Experience with Modafinil

I am Adult ADD and have used methylphenidate for many years to treat my ADD symptoms.

But recently, I’ve had problems filling my methylphenidate prescription because of reduced supply and increased ADHD diagnosis in the USA. So I decided a change and chose to try Modafinil.

Turns out  that Modafinil has had a profound effect on my cognition, with the added benefits of better alertness and concentration.

I found that Modafinil significantly improved my ability to focus on complex tasks and maintain productivity throughout the day. And I also noticed a lack of negative side effects.

Many other users of Modafinil have reported similar experiences, with many praising Modafinil for its ability to enhance cognitive function and improve multi-tasking.

But your mileage may vary, and you may prefer to stay with natural nootropic solutions for optimizing your brain instead of prescription drugs like Modafinil.

natural nootropic supplements vs smart drugsChoosing the Right Nootropic: Mind Lab Pro vs Modafinil

When making a choice between Mind Lab Pro® and Modafinil, it’s necessary to understand the difference between natural nootropic supplements and smart drugs.

You can purchase most nootropic supplements at your local vitamin shop, health food store, or online. Smart drugs like Modafinil on the other hand require a prescription from your doctor or psychiatrist.

You can likely find suppliers of Modafinil online, but I will not be linking to them here for legal as well as ethical reasons. And the purity of the drug could be questionable when bypassing your local pharmacy for your Modafinil supply.

Understanding the Ingredients

Mind Lab Pro® contains a unique formulation of 11 natural nootropic ingredients including Citicoline, Bacopa Monnieri extract, Organic Lion’s Mane Mushroom extract, Phosphatidylserine (PS from sunflower lecithin), N-Acetyl L-Tyrosine (NALT), L-Theanine, Rhodiola Rosea extract, Maritime Pine Bark Extract and NutriGenesis® Vitamins B6, B9, & B12.

The combination of these natural ingredients work in synergy to support 6 brain pathways. This combo helps boost brain energy, blood flow, brain waves, neurotransmitters like dopamine and acetylcholine, and brain regeneration and maintenance.

Modafinil, on the other hand, is a pharmaceutical drug with a single active ingredient—modafinil. It works as a dopamine reuptake inhibitor which increases the use of dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin in the prefrontal cortex.

And Modafinil elevates histamine levels in the hypothalamus region of your brain. Which helps increase wakefulness and prevent sleep.

While both products have been shown to improve cognitive performance, the natural formulation of Mind Lab Pro® may be more appealing to some users, particularly those who prefer natural nootropics,  over prescription smart drug medications.

Get: Mind Lab Pro®

Considering Side Effects

Mind Lab Pro® is generally considered safe, with few reported side effects. In contrast, Modafinil has been known to cause side effects like insomnia, headaches, and nausea.

It’s important to balance the potential side effects against the cognitive benefits of each product and do your research before initiating any new supplement routine.

Evaluating Costs

When it comes to costs, Modafinil may be more expensive than Mind Lab Pro®, particularly as it requires a valid prescription and if it is not covered by your health insurance.

Mind Lab Pro®, on the other hand, is available over-the-counter and online, and may be more accessible for some.

Determining Your Needs

In the end, the decision between Mind Lab Pro® and Modafinil hinges on your personal needs, objectives, and preferences. Consider factors such as your lifestyle, health objectives, and any potential allergies or intolerances to ingredients.

Bear in mind that individual experiences can differ—what is effective for one person might not necessarily work for another.


In conclusion, both Mind Lab Pro® and Modafinil offer impressive cognitive benefits, with each nootropic catering to different preferences and needs. Mind Lab Pro® provides a natural, comprehensive approach to cognitive enhancement, while Modafinil offers potent wakefulness-promoting effects and improved focus.

By considering factors such as ingredients, side effects, costs, and individual needs, you can make an informed decision on which nootropic is the best fit for your cognitive enhancement journey.

Get: Mind Lab Pro®

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the best Mind Lab Pro alternative?

My honest opinion suggests that Performance Lab® Mind is the best alternative to Mind Lab Pro®, offering an equally clean and high-quality product.

What is the #1 rated nootropic?

Mind Lab Pro® is the number one rated nootropic and the bestselling pre-made nootropic stack on the planet consisting of 11 scientifically proven ingredients to provide both short-term and long-term effects.

What are the long term effects of Mind Lab Pro?

Mind Lab Pro® boosts cognitive performance and memory and improves neural plasticity, structure and slows brain aging in the long-term. This makes it an effective way to maintain optimal mental wellbeing.

What are the main differences between Mind Lab Pro and Modafinil?

Mind Lab Pro® is a natural nootropic supplement with a blend of 11 ingredients, targeting multiple aspects of cognitive performance, whereas Modafinil is a pharmaceutical drug with a single active ingredient, primarily enhancing alertness and focus.

Are there any side effects associated with Mind Lab Pro and Modafinil?

Overall, Mind Lab Pro® and Modafinil are considered safe to use by most people but may cause nausea, headaches, stomach discomfort, and insomnia in some.

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.

[i] Greenblatt K, Adams N. Modafinil. [Updated 2023 Feb 6]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2024 Jan-. (source)

[ii] Robertson P, Hellriegel ET. Clinical pharmacokinetic profile of modafinil. Clin Pharmacokinet. 2003;42(2):123-37.  (source)

[iii] Wisor J. Modafinil as a catecholaminergic agent: empirical evidence and unanswered questions. Front Neurol. 2013 Oct 07;4:139. (source)

[iv] Ishizuka, T., Sakamoto, Y., Sakurai, T., and Yamatodani, A. (2003). “Modafinil increases histamine release in the anterior hypothalamus of rats.” Neuroscience Letters. 339, 143–146. (source)

[v] Zolkowska, D., Jain, R., Rothman, R. B., Partilla, J. S., Roth, B. L., Setola, V., Prisinzano TE, Baumann MH. (2009). “Evidence for the involvement of dopamine transporters in behavioral stimulant effects of modafinil”. Journal of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics 329, 738–746. (source)

[vi] Rasetti, R., Mattay, V. S., Stankevich, B., Skjei, K., Blasi, G., Sambataro, F., et al. (2010). “Modulatory effects of modafinil on neural circuits regulating emotion and cognition”. Neuropsychopharmacology 35, 2101–2109 (source)

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Join The Discussion - 10 comments

May 4, 2024

Hi David

I wanted to thank you again for sharing this wealth of knowledge! What is your opinion on taking Aniracetam with Modafinil? And do you think of any particular supplements that work well with Modafinil?

    David Tomen
    May 8, 2024

    Mark, I use Aniracetam with Modafinil and it works great. You can support Modafinil use with 500 mg Tyrosine twice per day, CDP-Choline 300 mg twice per day, ALCAR 500 mg twice per day, with a BioActive B-Complex or BioActive Multi like the Performance Lab NutriGenesis Multi. You also need Vitamin D and magnesium as the other cofactors. See my review for each for dosage.

Justin M
March 14, 2024

“And Modafinil elevates histamine levels in the hypothalamus region of your brain. Which helps increase wakefulness and prevent sleep.”

^I took adrafinil (which converts into modafinil in the liver) and got the worse histamine reaction ever. I got hay fever symptoms, trouble sleeping longer than 5 hours ,sinus and ear infections, bad depression, hurt my thinking and speaking ability something terrible, and serious muscle tightness that won’t go away. Is there any nootropic that lowers histamine? I think that’s what caused a lot of this. Thanks

    David Tomen
    March 15, 2024

    Justin, try recommended dosages of NAC, Quercetin and Vitamin C to control histamine.

February 25, 2024

Hello David,
That is a great article. I have ADD and recently switched to Modafinil from other stimulants. I found the side effects more manageable and there are considerable benefits. Interestingly, you mentioned it in the article. I did notice reduced anxiety and fear response to stimuli and even thoughts. What would be your advice about which are the best nootropics to stack with Modafinil. Can Mind lab pro taken along side it to reduce dose needed? Second question. What is a common dose of Modafinil used for ADD, or what dose do you take? I am experimenting with different doses and it seems that anything over 100mg is overstimulating for me even though I am still able to nap after taking if I didn’t sleep well that night. After trying multiple supplements and stimulants, they cant replace a good night sleep.

    David Tomen
    February 28, 2024

    Mark, I use 200 mg Modafinil with Mind Lab Pro and it works great.

      February 29, 2024

      Do you prefer it over methylphenidate? and would you consider switching to it permanently? And what is your take on Modafinil having a neuroprotective role? I tend to get sympathetic overstimulation which cause anxiety which feels artificial, and it seems that I cannot tolerate higher doses. Any recommendations if there is a way to reduce that ?

        David Tomen
        March 1, 2024

        Mark, after using Modafinil instead of Ritalin for two months I’ve decided to stay with Modafinil because it is working great for me. I haven’t taken a deep enough dive into everything Modafinil can do. For that I’d check out Dave Asprey’s stuff on Modafinil because he has been using it for many years.

        But I cannot comment on your last concern because I do not know enough of your situation, experience etc. Modafinil dosing can vary from 100 mg to as high as 800 mg per day. Maybe a lower dose would work for you.

February 23, 2024

What about a combo of Modafinil and Mind Lab Pro?

    David Tomen
    February 28, 2024

    Aaron, I use both and it works great.

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