7 Best OTC Nootropics: Top Over-the-Counter Brain Boosters 2023

Updated on August 8, 2023
 by — reviewed by Jason Williams, PhD (Contributor: George Collins / Editor: Yoko Hill)
best otc nootropics

What are the best OTC nootropics?

When it comes to enhancing cognitive function and improving mental performance, many people turn to nootropics. Nootropics are natural supplements that improve brain function, memory, creativity, motivation, and cognitive abilities. They are often referred to as a "smart drug" or a "brain booster." While some nootropics require a prescription, there are also many over-the-counter (OTC) options available.

In this article, we'll explore the best nootropics for 2023 that are available over the counter and have gained popularity for their effectiveness and safety.

Best OTC Nootropics

  • Vyvamind — Best brain supplement to improve brain performance
  • Nooceptin — Best for removing brain fog
  • NooCube — Great for improving blood flow to the brain cells
  • Mind Lab Pro — Great for boosting brain power
  • Feedamind — Best to help protect the brain from oxidative stress
  • Hunter Focus — Great brain health supplement for improved brain energy
  • Alpha Brain — Best to help your brain recover from oxidative damage

1. Vyvamind

Vyvamind is a brain-boosting supplement designed to support the cognitive function and mental well-being. It contains a powerful blend of ingredients that work together to enhance brain function, focus, memory, and overall brain health.

One of tis ingredients, Caffeine Anhydrous, helps support memory, attention, and cognitive performance.(1) Citicoline is known for its ability to improve memory and reduce anxiety.(2) It helps you retain information more effectively and manage stress during periods of intense studying or exams.

L-tyrosine enhances cognitive function by improving blood circulation to the brain. This leads to improved focus, concentration, and mental clarity. Found in green tea, L-Theanine promotes relaxation without causing drowsiness. It especially helps users manage stress and anxiety while maintaining a clear and focused mind. B vitamins play a crucial role in brain function and energy production. They help convert food into fuel for the brain, supporting mental alertness and overall cognitive performance.


  • Helps improve brain health and cognitive ability
  • Improves focus and attention for better productivity
  • Supports memory retention and recall
  • Increases mental energy and alertness
  • Helps protect the brain from age-related cognitive decline


  • Not suitable for pregnant or breastfeeding women
  • May cause mild gastrointestinal discomfort in some individuals

By incorporating these ingredients, Vyvamind aims to provide users with the necessary support to thrive physically and mentally. However, it is always advisable to consult with a healthcare professional before starting any new supplement regimen.

2. Nooceptin

Nooceptin is a unique brain health supplement that offers a range of benefits to its users. It contains a blend of carefully selected ingredients that aim to support their overall well-being and cognitive health. A key ingredient, Rhodiola Rosea root extract, supports neuronal communication, improves focus, and enhances memory retention, which are all important for both young and aged people.(3)

Another ingredient, Bacopa Monnieri, has been used in traditional medicine for centuries. It improves memory, enhances attention span, and helps to manage stress. This botanical ingredient is particularly beneficial for those who often experience high levels of stress during work.

Panax Ginseng is an adaptogen that enhances mental performance and increase energy levels.(4) It improves concentration, boosts cognitive function, and even supports a healthy mood, which is beneficial for high achievers who are juggling multiple responsibilities and activities. Ginkgo Biloba is known for its antioxidant properties and its ability to promote blood circulation, including in the brain. By improving blood flow, it enhances cognitive function, memory, and alertness.


  • Supports different key areas of brain health
  • Reduces inflammation in the brain
  • Boosts focus and concentration
  • Reduces stress and anxiety for emotional well-being
  • Protects the brain from oxidative damage


  • May cause mild headaches in some individuals
  • May interact with certain medications
  • May cause sleep disturbances if taken too close to bedtime

Overall, Nooceptin combines these ingredients to offer a comprehensive solution for enhancing mental health. It helps improve cognitive abilities, enhances memory, supports attention span, and manages stress levels – all critical factors for success and overall well-being.

3. NooCube

NooCube is a popular OTC brain-boosting supplement that has gained a reputation for its ability to improve cognitive function and mental clarity. It contains a blend of ingredients that work synergistically to support brain health and enhance mental performance.

Some of the key ingredients in NooCube and their benefits include Alpha GPC, Huperzine A, Cat's Claw and more. Alpha GPC is a potent compound which enhances memory and learning abilities by increasing the production of neurotransmitters, promoting optimal brain health. Huperzine A, derived from a plant called Chinese club moss, helps to improve memory, focus, and concentration by preventing the breakdown of key neurotransmitters.(5)

Cat's Claw is a natural ingredient containing antioxidants that protect brain cells from damage caused by environmental stressors, helping to maintain optimal brain function.(6) Bacopa Monnieri is known for its ability to improve memory and cognitive performance. It reduces anxiety and enhances mental clarity. Oat Straw is rich in antioxidants, boosting alpha-2 waves in the brain, promoting wakefulness, attention, and mental performance. L-Theanine & L-Tyrosine are amino acids that reduce stress while enhancing focus, attention, and mental performance, enabling users to stay focused and motivated.


  • Helps regulate brain chemicals
  • Improves oxygen delivery to nerve cells in the brain
  • Improves overall brain function and cognitive abilities
  • Reduces brain fog and increases alertness
  • Supports brain regeneration and neuroplasticity


  • May interact with certain medications

By combining these powerful ingredients, NooCube provides a safe and effective way to enhance your cognitive abilities. However, it's essential to consult a healthcare professional before beginning any new supplement regimen to ensure it aligns with individual needs and goals.

4. Mind Lab Pro

Mind Lab Pro is a nootropic supplement specifically designed to enhance cognitive performance and optimize brain function. It contains a combination of high-quality ingredients that provide a wide range of benefits.

A prominent ingredient, Citicoline, supports brain cell membrane formation and improves communication between brain cells. It enhances memory, focus, and attention. Bacopa Monnieri is known for its ability to reduce stress and improve memory. Bacopa is an ideal ingredient for boosting cognitive function while promoting a calm and relaxed state of mind.

Lion's Mane Mushroom promotes nerve growth factor (NGF) production, which supports the growth and maintenance of brain cells. It enhances memory, focus, and overall cognitive function. Phosphatidylserine helps with the formation and maintenance of healthy cell membranes in the brain. It improves learning abilities and memory recall, along with reducing cognitive decline.

L-Theanine is known for its ability to promote relaxation without causing drowsiness. It reduces anxiety and improves focus, making it beneficial for users managing stress and workload. Rhodiola Rosea is an adaptogen that helps the body cope with stress and fatigue. It improves mental stamina, reduces mental fatigue, and enhances overall cognitive function.(7)


  • Helps achieve an improved brain health
  • Boosts memory and recall abilities
  • Improves focus and concentration
  • Increases mental energy and alertness
  • Promotes brain regeneration


  • May cause mild side effects in some individuals
  • Not suitable for users with certain conditions or diseases

Mind Lab Pro's ingredients work together to provide mental clarity, focus, and memory support needed to excel in academics, professional work and other activities while managing stress effectively. It is a safe and effective supplement to optimize brain function.

5. Feedamind

Feedamind is a nootropic supplement that aims to improve cognitive function, including focus, memory, cognition, and drive. It contains a unique blend of 16 natural ingredients, including Pterostilbene, N-Acetyl-L-Tyrosine, alpha-GPC, Biotin, and Dynamine. Following are some benefits of these ingredients.

Pterostilbene is a natural dietary compound and the primary antioxidant component of blueberries. It has increased bioavailability in comparison to other stilbene compounds, which enhances its dietary benefit. It has potent anti-cancer, anti-inflammatory, immunomodulatory, anti-diabetic, antioxidant, analgesic, anti-aging, and neuroprotective effects.(8)

N-Acetyl-L-Tyrosine is an amino acid that helps replenish catecholamine levels in the brain, which can become depleted under stressful conditions. It boosts cognition and alertness in stressful situations.(9) Alpha-GPC is a cholinergic compound that increases the levels of a chemical in the brain called acetylcholine, which is important for memory and learning functions. It also supports cellular membranes and helps prevent cognitive decline.

Biotin (Vitamin B7) helps maintain the health of the nervous system, liver, eyes, hair, and skin.(10) It also helps the body break down substances like fats, carbohydrates, and others. Dynamine is a natural alkaloid that enhances energy, focus, and mood. It has a faster onset and shorter duration of action than caffeine, making it a good alternative to caffeine.


  • Enhances cognitive abilities and mental sharpness
  • Improves mood and emotional well-being
  • Helps with memory and mental agility


  • May cause mild gastrointestinal discomfort in some individuals
  • Individual responses may vary

Feedamind's unique blend of ingredients makes it an effective supplement for improving cognitive function and mental performance. However, it's important to note that the safety and efficacy of these supplements may vary depending on the individual and their specific health conditions. It's always a good idea to consult with a healthcare professional before taking any supplements.

6. Hunter Focus

Hunter Focus is a nootropic supplement that improves cognitive function, including memory, focus, and brain cell health. It contains natural ingredients, some of which are B Vitamins, Caffeine Anhydrous, Bacopa Monnieri, L-Tyrosine, and Ashwagandha. These provide a bunch of benefits for both mind and body.

B Vitamins (B6, B9 and B12) help improve blood flow to the brain, which improves memory and cognitive function. Caffeine Anhydrous is a highly concentrated form of caffeine that improves alertness, focus, and brain function.

Bacopa Monnieri is a herb that has been used in Ayurvedic medicine for centuries to enhance memory and learning. It also has anti-anxiety and anti-depressant effects. L-Tyrosine, an amino acid, helps replenish catecholamine levels in the brain, which can become depleted under stressful conditions. It boosts cognition and alertness in stressful situations.

Ashwagandha comes from an evergreen shrub that grows in Asia and Africa. It is commonly used for stress, anxiety, fatigue, and other conditions. Ashwagandha contains chemicals that may help calm the brain, reduce inflammation, lower blood pressure, and boost the immune system. It also has neuroprotective effects.


  • Supports cognitive function and mental clarity
  • Enhances memory retention and recall
  • Promotes healthy brain aging
  • Improves focus and attention


  • May take some time to show noticeable results
  • May have minor side effects for some people

Hunter Focus's natural ingredients make it an effective supplement for improving cognitive function and mental performance. However, it's always a good idea to consult with a healthcare professional before taking any supplements.

7. Alpha Brain

Onnit Alpha Brain is a popular nootropic supplement designed to enhance cognitive function and support overall brain health. It contains a well-researched blend of ingredients that provide several benefits to the users. Here are some of the key ingredients and their potential advantages:

Bacopa Monnieri extract is used for its neuroprotective and memory-enhancing properties. It helps improve focus and attention span. Huperzia Serrata extract is a natural compound is known for its ability to inhibit the enzyme acetylcholinesterase, which breaks down acetylcholine in the brain.(11) By increasing acetylcholine levels, it enhances learning, memory, and mental clarity.

Alpha-GPC is a precursor to acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter involved in cognitive function. It improves memory and cognitive performance, making it an ideal ingredient for people looking to boost their mental abilities. Phosphatidylserine is a naturally occurring phospholipid plays a crucial role in maintaining healthy brain cell function. It is linked to improved attention span, focus, and reduced mental fatigue, ultimately supporting better cognitive performance.(12) L-Tyrosine is involved in the production of neurotransmitters like dopamine and norepinephrine, which are important for mood regulation and stress management. By supporting neurotransmitter balance, L-tyrosine helps users deal with pressure and perform better.


  • Boosts cognitive performance and mental alertness
  • Improves information processing
  • Enhances focus and concentration
  • Supports overall brain health


  • May cause mild headaches in some individuals

It is important to note that individual results may vary, and it is advisable to consult with a healthcare professional before starting this supplement regimen.

How Do OTC Nootropics Work?

Over-the-counter (OTC) nootropics basically work by increasing the levels of certain chemicals in the brain that are responsible for promoting brain health and supporting cognitive function. They also help protect the brain from oxidative stress and improve blood flow to the brain. When consumed as directed, OTC nootropics exert direct and measurable effects on neurotransmitters, brain metabolism, and neuroplasticity.

The primary mode of action of OTC nootropics involves influencing neurotransmitter levels. By modulating neurotransmitters such as acetylcholine, dopamine, serotonin, and GABA, these supplements improve memory, focus, mood, and overall cognitive performance. For instance, some OTC nootropics increase acetylcholine availability, supporting learning and memory retention. Others stimulate dopamine receptors, leading to enhanced motivation and improved mood.

Additionally, OTC nootropics boost brain metabolism by enhancing cerebral blood flow and oxygenation. This increased nutrient supply to brain cells ensures optimal energy production and facilitates optimal cognitive function. Furthermore, some OTC nootropics have neuroprotective properties, safeguarding brain cells from oxidative stress and promoting brain cell repair and regeneration.

OTC nootropics also promote neuroplasticity, the brain's ability to reorganize and form new neural connections. By supporting neuroplasticity, these supplements facilitate learning and adaptability, making it easier for individuals to acquire new skills and knowledge.

How We Selected the Best Over-the-Counter Nootropics

To identify the top over-the-counter nootropics, we followed a comprehensive review process. This included evaluating efficacy, ingredient quality, brand reliability, transparency, manufacturing practices, customer feedback, cost, and overall value. Our aim was to present readers with a trustworthy and comprehensive list of the top OTC nootropics.


We scrutinized scientific studies and user testimonials to measure the cognitive enhancement provided by each nootropic, with a focus on aspects like focus, memory, and mental agility.


We looked closely at each formula, giving priority to natural, scientifically-supported, and superior quality ingredients that boost cognitive function.

Scientific Backing

We cross-checked the effectiveness of critical ingredients in improving cognitive performance through peer-reviewed research and meta-analyses.


We evaluated the recommended dosages and balance of ingredients, ensuring they are in line with proven research for optimal results.


We confirmed the safety of each ingredient, considering potential side effects and interactions, and ensuring compliance with regulatory norms. Ingredients approved by the FDA were given priority.

Brand Trustworthiness

We assessed the reliability and credibility of brands through customer reviews, industry expert opinions, and company history.

Product Transparency

We valued full disclosure of ingredients, including their sources and concentrations, to support informed consumer choices.

Manufacturing Standards

We evaluated the manufacturing practices, prioritizing products made in facilities certified for Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP).

Customer Feedback

We analyzed genuine customer reviews, taking into account testimonials detailing cognitive enhancements and overall mental improvements.


We compared product prices to ensure they were competitive and proportionate to the quality and effectiveness of the nootropic.


We evaluated overall value, weighing the balance between price, quality, and effectiveness to guarantee the best return on investment.


The year 2023 brings a promising array of over-the-counter (OTC) nootropics, offering individuals effective and accessible options to enhance cognitive function and mental performance. These OTC brain boosters have gained popularity for their scientifically backed ingredients, formulated to target specific cognitive functions and support overall brain health. From Vyvamind's focus on brain development to Nooceptin's memory-enhancing properties and NooCube's comprehensive approach to cognitive support, these nootropics cater to diverse needs.

Additionally, Mind Lab Pro and Feedamind provide comprehensive solutions for optimized brain function, incorporating a range of nutrients and adaptogens for mental clarity and emotional well-being. Ageless Brain and Alpha Brain are both potent supplements with unique ingredients that enhance both mental and physical well-being. While these best nootropic supplements offer an impressive array of cognitive benefits, it's essential to consider individual needs, consult with healthcare professionals, and adhere to recommended dosages.

Overall, the pursuit of cognitive enhancement through OTC nootropics is marked by scientific rigor, brand trustworthiness, and dedication to consumer well-being. By incorporating these brain-boosting supplements into a healthy lifestyle, individuals can harness their potential for improved memory, focus, and cognitive performance, supporting academic achievements and overall mental vitality in the year ahead.


Are OTC nootropics safe?

Many OTC nootropics are safe, but they may have side effects, especially if taken in high doses. It's advised to follow the manufacturer's instructions and consult a healthcare professional.

Can I take OTC nootropics with other medications?

Interactions between OTC nootropics and other medications can occur. It's essential to consult with a healthcare professional before combining nootropics with any other drugs.

Can I use OTC nootropics daily?

Most OTC nootropics can be used daily, but it's important to follow the manufacturer's instructions and consult with a healthcare provider to prevent potential side effects or tolerance build-up.

How long does it take for OTC nootropics to work?

The onset time for OTC nootropics varies. Some may produce effects within hours, while others, particularly herbal supplements, may take weeks to show noticeable improvements.

Can OTC nootropics improve long-term brain health?

Some OTC nootropics may support long-term brain health by reducing oxidative stress and inflammation, enhancing brain plasticity, and promoting brain cell growth. However, more research is needed to confirm these effects.

How do I choose the right OTC nootropic for me?

Generally, natural nootropics work for most people as they support healthy brain function and boost brain health. But choosing the right nootropic depends on your specific needs and goals. Research each nootropic's effects, potential side effects, and consult with a healthcare provider to make an informed decision.

Can OTC nootropics improve brain aging?

Some OTC nootropic supplements on the market help slow down the natural aging process of the brain and boost brain health and cognitive function in healthy individuals. These supplements are known to have a positive effect on brain function and may help improve memory retrieval and recall. However, it is important to note that the extent of these benefits may vary from person to person.