Nootropics and Supplements You Can Trust
It’s no secret that the supplement industry, in general, can be a bit questionable. The marketplace is largely unregulated, which means that most substances can be sold without any proof that they work.
This is because the standards for supplements are much lower than for pharmaceuticals or food products. In the United States, the Food And Drug Administration will only start evaluating products if there are already complaints against them.
Because there is no official oversight, you have to rely on the word of the supplier that you are getting the right stuff. There are many examples of nootropics that end up being adulterated, watered down, or mislabeled when they go through third-party testing.
It really is a little like the “wild west” out there. This means that it is your responsibility to do the research on suppliers before putting their products in your body.
Luckily, there are many nootropic brands that strive for quality and transparency. The main factor in determining the quality of a supplement vendor is third-party testing. If the supplement can pass independent verification, that’s an excellent sign. If a brand does not offer this assurance, then you are simply taking the manufacturers word.
Here at Holistic Nootropics, we’ve done our homework. We only partner with brands that are committed to providing pure, high-quality, tested nootropics. We also strive for full transparency, so if you’d like to like to know how we make money, you can read our statement here.
The Pure Nootropics brand has been around since 2013, making it one of the older nootropics companies in operation. They originally staked their reputation on offering reliable third-party tested racetams like aniracetam and oxiracetam. This was a game-changer, as many manufacturers at the time were only offering racetams of dubious quality from China.
Since then, Pure Nootropics has expanded its lineup to include dozens of synthetic and natural nootropics, including proprietary blends. They offer the results of independent testing on each product on their website, including assay tests, cadmium testing, heavy metal testing, and product identity tests. They use vegan capsules and minimal amounts of fillers.
Overall, Pure Nootropics has proven itself to be a reliable source of quality supplements all offered at a reasonable price.
OptiMind produces high quality premade nootropic stacks. Its lineup includes Mind Lab Pro, one of the most well-reviewed nootropic stack available and one of our favorites. According to their documentation, it is the most researched and clinically effective product of its kind. Generally speaking, premade stacks are the shadiest type of nootropic supplements, simply because the manufacturer is not required to say what or how much goes into each blend. And when you combine different substances in one product, you increase the chance of a negative reaction.
Luckily, Optimind is also extremely transparent about how much of each ingredient is in Mind Lab Pro, and where it is sourced from. They do not hide behind a vague “proprietary blend” label like some other stacks out there (a huge red flag for us). And, they clearly strive to use the highest quality version of each component in their stack. Their website clearly mentions the amount of each ingredient in it and provides third-party testing data. We can confidently recommend OptiMinds products as superior to many of its competitors. What’s more, they only sell through their website, so you can rest assured you are getting the real deal every time you purchase it.
Nootropics Depot is one of the most well-regarded retailers in business, and for good reason. They have a great selection of the most popular cognitive supplements, from ashwagandha to zinc, with exceptional standards for quality and customer service. They conduct their own in-house testing on every bulk order they receive, including HPLC (high performance liquid chromatography) and FTIR (Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy), techniques that separate, quantify, and identify every component in a compound. They do not rely solely on their supplier’s COA, which sets them apart from more cut-rate operations out there.
This does mean that Nootropics Depot is a bit pricier than other companies, but we think it is worth the cost to ensure you’re getting a pure product. They also set themselves apart by offering patented formula versions of nootropics. These are nootropics that have undergone a proprietary system for processing or standardizing that give the supplements higher levels of their active compounds. These tend to be more effective “premium” versions of the normal versions.
Another thing we like about this company is that all their products come in multiple sizes, making purchasing decisions easier. They also offer inexpensive trial packs for those who want to try before they buy in bulk, which is a practice we’d like to see more operations adopt.
US-based Thorne research has made a name for itself as a top-shelf purveyor of pharmaceutical-grade supplements. This supplier goes above and beyond when it comes to ensuring product purity. For one, unlike the vast majority of companies, Thorne actually manufactures all their supplements themselves in a state of the art facility. This means that Thorne is not relying on another supplier’s word on whether an ingredient is good or bunk.
What’s more, they use both rigorous in-house AND third-party testing on everything they offer to ensure it is the highest possible quality. They test every batch at multiple steps along the way, from the raw ingredients that arrive at their facility, to the finished product. This commitment to oversight has led to Thorne being the first supplement company to receive an A1 rating from Australia’s Therapeutic Goods Administration.
Overall, Thorne is one of the most trusted suppliers of vitamins and nootropics out there, and they are well worth the investment if you are serious about purchasing reliable supplements you can trust.
Doublewood is a popular nootropics brand with a wide variety of products that they produce in the US in their own GMP (Good Manufacturing Practices) rated facility. Doublewood provides third-party testing and COAs for everything they sell, which is very reassuring. Doublewoods is primarily useful for vitamins and other dietary supplements. Their selection of nootropics is fairly limited, although it is getting better, and they seem to be adding more cognitive enhancers regularly.
This company also has an excellent reputation for customer service, which is a huge plus in the nootropic world. Many companies in this industry, even if their products are of high quality, suffer from poor customer support. Refreshingly, Doublewood has invested more in this area than it’s competitors.
As their name suggests, Starwest Botanicals is a vendor of high-quality herbal supplements. They offer a massive selection of capsules, oils, and extracts. As you may have guessed, this company only sells organic, herbal products. They do not stock synthetic nootropics like noopept or piracetam. However, with over 3,000 items, Starwest offers an incredible array of botanical supplements, many of which are hard to find other places.
Starwest has been around since the 1970s and has built a strong reputation as a reputable supplier. They run their own GMP-compliant testing lab to ensure product identity and purity, and to test for heavy metals and bacteria.
Biotics Research is one of a handful of companies that run both an in-house manufacturing operation and a testing lab. Their minimally processed formulas are used by health professionals around the globe. Biotics Research claims to rigorously test all incoming raw materials for potency and adulteration. Then the finished products undergo multiple forms of spectroscopic and chromatographic testing that goes far beyond what most in the industry offer.
The main drawback of Biotics Research is that they only sell through licensed medical professionals. They used to be available to the general public, but now require a physician’s recommendation. However, if you are working with a doctor, Biotics Research is probably the highest-quality, purest option out there.
Similar to OptiMind, Neurohacker Collective produces premade stacks for nootropics enthusiasts. They’ve been around since 2016, and have a great reputation based on their Qualia line of products. The run a GMP-certified facility and claim to use only the highest quality ingredients in their products, reviewing the COA (Certificate Of Analysis) on each batch of materials. They also open every 100th bottle and verify that the ingredients in the capsules are up to their standards.
According to Neurohacker Collective, “the Qualia cognition line is the result of thousands of hours of research and development by top scientists in complex-systems modeling, neurobiology, organic chemistry as well as dozens of MDs and PhDs.” They also have a great support team and are very transparent as a company. In our experience dealing with them, as well as the reviews of others, Neurohacker Collective is one of the most trusted names in the nootropics community.
Nootropics Prime is an online course that will equip you with the knowledge to wade through the sometimes murky world of cognitive supplements. The nootropics market can sometimes seem like the wild west, with a lot of contradictory information, confusing language, and questionable sources. This unique service will help you cut through the noise and understand what nootropic can (and can’t) do for you, in plain language that you can actually use.
These classes are developed by licensed by professional NTP Erik Levi, and are full of useful up-to-date information. There’s plenty of information out there on where to buy nootropics, but if you’re looking to get the inside scoop on how to use them to better your life, we recommend Nootropics Prime.
Project NooYou is a relatively new brand offering a handful of boutique nootropic stacks. They manufacture all their products in New York and employ third-party testing, as well as the FDA’s c.G.M.P guidelines. Their current product lineup includes NITROvit, which is an all-round cognitive enhancer with a dozen popular nootropic compounds, and their “smart caffeine” stack NITROamp. They are currently developing more stacks, and we are looking to see what they come up with in the future.
BrainMD is a line of supplements (including many nootropics) started by the renowned neuroscientist and psychiatrist Dr. David Amen. This brand offers dozens of nootropic compounds, as well as vitamins and general health supplements. They offer several stacks designed for specific purposes such as improving focus or memory. Everything BrainMD carries is all-natural, they do not include any synthetic nootropics in their line-up. They perform third-party testing on all their raw materials and manufacture everything in a climate-controlled, state of the art facility in California.
In short, we are always seeking to provide our readers with the best up-to-date information on where to buy nootropics. We have verified that the brands we partner with are trustworthy and sell quality supplements. This industry is always changing, and as new suppliers enter the market we may update our list to reflect who we think truly reflects our values. We take safety seriously, and if we feel that any company is cutting corners or operating in a legal “grey area”, we will stop recommending them.
We are always seeking out new partnerships. To contact us with any business opportunities, please drop us a line at