Welcome to the Pure Nootropics Knowledge Base!

The purpose of this section is to help you better understand nootropic compounds in general and the specifics of some of the nootropics we carry. For someone new to nootropics, we suggest you start here:

Before getting too far we want to mention that nootropics are a very subjective experience and while a particular compound works for one individual it may not work for another, this is why we put together a tutorial for tracking mental improvements with nootropics that you can use to track the efficacy of a particular compound.

For anyone seeking general overall cognitive enhancement, optimum nutrition, diet, and lifestyle are the best starting points. This includes simple things like getting a proper amount of sleep (check out our sleep guide for tips on falling asleep and staying asleep) and getting enough micro-nutrients (see our posts on the importance of Choline, getting your omega 3’s, and why you should be supplementing Vitamin D for more information, as a large number of individuals are deficient in one of these).

For more specific information about particular nootropics, each section below covers:

  • Different decisions when buying nootropics
  • Interactions with other compounds
  • Side effects / benefits
  • Studies

There are a wide variety of nootropics as it is a broad category that encompasses many synthetic and natural compounds. The term was derived in the early 1970s and some of the most popular nootropics are part of the “racetam” family. Note that we provide more information about each item on its respective product page under the “full analysis” tab.



The first and most popular of these is called piracetam, which was discovered nearly 4 decades ago as a derivative of the neurotransmitter GABA. This smart drug is a popular option among elderly and youth alike because of the intense memory enhancement and improved learning ability for users.

Many people use piracetam as a beginner nootropic to have a product that is potent and effective, but is not overwhelming. Starting with piracetam is known to be a great beginner stack on many of the most well-established communities, such as Longecity and Reddit.

Even though piracetam is not extremely potent, it can create feelings of mood enhancement, reduced anxiety, and even improves focus and concentration in some individuals.



This is the second most common racetam and it was discovered not long after piracetam. Aniracetam is a very fast acting nootropic that improves memory formation and learning, but also increases stimulation. Because it has a high bioavailability (meaning it absorbs quickly), it is fast acting and more potent than piracetam, but it requires more doses throughout the day.

For most people who are trying to improve mental energy, get some stimulation, and improve learning, aniracetam is a great choice. It is often used in addition to piracetam as part of a nootropic stack that is focused on racetams.



Often considered one of the most potent racetams, oxiracetam has a long history of neuro protection. Many studies show that oxiracetam can not only halt, but also reverse neurological decline. Sometimes this can translate into reversing damage from trauma (whether chemical or physical) that people suffer earlier in life.

This smart drug is used to treat many memory related illnesses, such as Alzheimer’s and dementia. It is also useful for younger individuals who are seeking enhanced memory and learning. For most people, this is an advanced, but very safe nootropic addition.



Considered 60 times more potent than piracetam, this nootropic is a great boost of mental energy with the same memory enhancement benefits of the entire racetam family. Phenylpiracetam is so stimulating, the olympic organizations have banned the substance for athletes, but that doesn’t mean you cannot use it to your advantage!

As a highly potent nootropic drug, phenylpiracetam is also very bioavailable which means taking smaller doses more frequently is a good idea.


Alpha GPC
Alpha GPC

Finding a choline source for your racetams is imperative because this supplement is a precursor for the neurotransmitter acetylcholine. This brain chemical is often responsible for creating memories and it is how piracetam and other drugs are most effective in helping you to learn. Without adequate choline, it is possible to suffer from headaches and other jaw pains that are side effects of low acetylcholine.

It is best to use two types of choline called CDP choline (citicholine) and alpha GPC, which are higher in their bioavailability and will provide more raw choline for you to improve your memory and prevent side effects.



Another great nootropic drug is noopept, which is extremely potent. It is considered 1000 times more potent than piracetam, which means the doses are lower and it is important to be precise! Noopept will also help to improve memory formation and learning ability, but it does so through the glutamate receptors as opposed to the mechanisms of racetams.

This is a great drug to use if you want a potent stimulant that will also help to improve your memory. Some people even consider noopept a great way of reducing anxiety and improving general mood, but it will depend on your biochemistry how you react.



This is an all-natural amino acid found in green tea. L-theanine is associated with more alpha brain waves, which are correlated with relaxation. For most people, relaxed brain waves are different from the common high stimulation environment we all live in!

Combining L-theanine with a morning cup of coffee is considered one of the best nootropics for beginners who are interested in focus and attention. Numerous studies show the combined positive effects of caffeine and L-theanine, which are more profound than either of the two alone!


Derived from the nutrient thiamine (vitamin B1), sulbutiamine is a well-absorbed supplement that more easily crosses the blood-brain barrier. Japanese scientists in the early 20th century tried to develop synthetic options to consume more thiamine because deficiency was so common. Finally, in 1936 sulbutiamine was discovered and has been used as a drug ever since.

It wasn’t until recently when the brain enhancing effects of sulbutiamine became more apparent. It is a treatment for fatigue (both mental and physical) and there is evidence it supports brain function through neuroprotection, improves memory retention, and has a positive effect on mental energy.


Researchers during the Soviet Union were hard at work developing treatments to improve brain function and one of their results was phenibut. This derivative of GABA (a chemical in your brain) easily crosses the blood-brain barrier and helps to treat anxiety, PTSD, as well as depression and a variety of other stress-related disorders.

According to a study in 2013, it is a powerful stress-reducing drug, but needs to be cycled in order to prevent dependence.


One of the most popular smart drugs on the market is within the family called “Modafinil”. Many people avoid buying Modafinil because it is a scheduled substance in the United States, but one alternative is Adrafinil. This is a prodrug for Modafinil that improves wakefulness and concentration in order to complete certain tasks. Users of Adrafinil fin that it has slightly different cognitive effects than Modafinil even though it is supposed to be converted into that drug in the body.

In addition to being a wakefulness agent, Adrafinil has been noted as a tool for improving concentration, focus, and alertness beyond that of caffeine. Best of all, it is unscheduled in the United States so no shady online buys from a pharmacy you might not be able to trust!

Bacopa Monnieri

Ancient Ayurvedic wisdom is on heavy display with bacopa monnieri. This plant-based nootropic has been used by Indians to develop improved memory and cognitive function for over 3000 years. Some claim this Ayurvedic remedy has been around for nearly 5000. Because of the popularity in Indian culture and cognitive medicine, it has garnered much attention in the western research laboratory as well.

Unlike some of the Ayurvedic options on the market, bacopa monnieri has had spectacular scientific trials that prove efficacy with a number of different indicators. Some of the most successful nootropic blends, such as Alpha Brain, are using this as a core ingredient to improve cognitive function.


This traditional Indian remedy for anxiety has received much attention due to its popularity in Asia. Since modern research in nootropic products began, ashwagandha has consistently proven itself as one of the more popular methods of improving mental performance by reducing the anxiety and stress being caused to an individual.

There is preliminary evidence that ashwagandha can also improve certain aspects of attention and focus, but they are less well-studied as the anti-anxiety effects. Not only can ashwagandha help you to improve focus and reduce anxiety, but promising research shows ashwagandha can be a powerful anti-inflammatory agent as well.


The amino acid, L-Tyrosine, is a non-essential amino acid that acts as a precursor for certain brain neurotransmitters like dopamine, epinephrine and norepinephrine. Evidence thus far shows that L-Tyrosine is an effective way to improve working memory while under stressful conditions. There is also some evidence to suggest that it is able to enhance creative thought!

Modern humans often get far less sleep than they should and L-Tyrosine can be a useful answer. It will ameliorate the detrimental effects of sleep deprivation to help you stay fresh, alert, and productive throughout the day.

54 thoughts on “Knowledge Base

  1. debra says:

    Please tell me how many milligrams of caffeine and L-Theanine are in the 1-2 Go Formula and why this information is not detailed on the bottle, even my vitamins have this. Also purchased the Piracetam and this also was not listed on the bottle. I had to go to your website to refresh my memory. Why is this pertinent information not listed on the label.
    Thank you. I look forward to your prompt reply.

    • PureNootropics says:

      Hi Debra,

      Thanks for your inquiry, we appreciate your feedback. We’ve had most of our labels redesigned for clarity purposes, and newer bottles of the racetams indicate the amount contained in each capsule. As for the 1-2-Go, the contents and respective quantities are as follows:

      160 mg – L-theanine
      150 mg – Theobromine
      80 mg – Caffeine

      Let us know if you have any other questions or concerns.

  2. Sebastien says:


    I did receive my order without any problem an started taking the Piracetam+Aniracetam+Oxiracetam+Choline bundle right away. It’s been about a week now. I can’t really say if I am feeling anything just yet, though. No side effect at all, that’s for sure… Maybe I need to wait a little bit longer before I feel anything new, right ? More later then I guess.
    All the best,

    • PureNootropics says:

      Hi Seb,

      We appreciate your business and thank you for taking the time to make an inquiry. What dosages are you taking of each product? Note that we always recommend starting small and increasing dosage (within reason, examine.com gives good suggestions on dosing ranges) until you receive the desired result. However, with that said, most would describe racetams as a more subtle nootropic than something like adrafinil, sulbutiamine, or our 1-2-Go product that have a more noticeable effect. Many would describe racetams as giving you a slight edge. Also note that everyone’s biochemistry is different and although many find that choline increases the efficacy of racetams, there are some people that get plenty of choline from diet and supplementing with choline in those instances can actually negatively effect cognition. We’ve also seen instances where one person reacts good to one racetam but not at all to others, so you might want to try varying things up a bit to see what works for you. Feel free to e-mail us regarding your questions, and we’ll do our best to get back to you regarding the same.

  3. Jeffrey Snow says:

    I am 67 years old. I go to a gym regularly. My comment is more of a question. Will this supplement cause blood pressure to rise? I tried other’s but they increased my blood pressure so I don’t want to do that again. Please help

    • PureNootropics says:

      We suggest looking at examine.com or speaking with your physician about whether the particular ingredient you are interested in has any counter indications related to increased blood pressure.

  4. Suzanne Ritchey says:

    Saw about smart drugs HBO special. It stated the Astronauts used a type and Wall Street used a type of these. Can you tell me which ones and I presume if I take a dose it is NOT like taking a RX for anxiety and or an AHD drug where I feel effects in a short time? I get this from reading your comments. I find this interesting. Also, do you make your own compounds and if so what are your qualifications?

    • PureNootropics says:

      Hi Suzanne,

      Well, Phenibut was developed by the Russians and given to cosmonauts to reduce anxiety without inhibiting cognitive function (like many other anti-anxiety medications). Modafinil is prevalent in Wall Street and Silicon Valley, but requires a prescription; it is typically prescribed as an anti-narcolepsy drug and is given to US Air Force pilots to help them stay awake long hours. Some smart drugs will have an immediately noticeable effect, others will be more subtle and sometimes the difference can only be quantified by tracking. We currently do not have a wide assortment of unique offerings/compounds beyond our 1-2-Go, and Optimal Choline Complex. The 1-2-Go was formulated based on the positive studies regarding the combination of l-theanine and caffeine, we simply added theobromine, as it acts similarly to caffeine and gives the blend more of a stimulating factor that we intended to be noticeable by the user. Finally the Choline Complex is a blend of two different Cholinergics (Alpha GPC & Citicoline) that are highly bioavailable. The rest of our products are typical unblended (apart from fillers and excipients, which is standard in capsuled products) ingredients; this allows our customers to develop their own assortment of cognitive enhancement supplements that best suits their individual brain chemistry.

      As far as qualifications, none of the founders of Pure Nootropics are a trained medical doctor, so we always recommend that you speak to your medical provider before taking any new supplements. We have been a part of the nootropics community since 2013 and nootropics users for over a decade. With Pure Nootropics we have sought to provide excellent customer service and maintain the highest product quality (because we take this stuff too).

  5. Jay Stannard says:


    Just ordered something on your site; I would like to become a regular customer of yours. Can you provide me information about any 3rd party tests you have done of your substances?


    • PureNootropics says:

      Hi Jay,

      We appreciate your business! We do all of our third party testing through a company called Colmaric Analyticals. We test both for purity and heavy metals, therefore you know you are getting only 99-100% pure product, and that our products don’t have any unwanted substances in them. If the COA isn’t available on our site you can always email us for the most recent batch COA. Please let us know if you have any further questions.

      Thanks again!

  6. Tommy says:


    As someone who has never taken nootropics before and primarily wants them for studying and exams where would you recommend start? Thanks

  7. Carlos Atencio says:

    I am new to nootropic I am 45 year old men.
    I have read all concerning your products but i cant still find out which one is good for me.
    I have brain fog , lack of concentration and some lack of memory
    would you be so kind and recommend me a product. I read Prenylpiracetam is excelent but Racetam is good too.

    Thank you for you adv


  8. R says:

    Will I be able to get this to the Uk without issues? Racetam + Choline Bundle
    Piracetam Capsules
    Oxiracetam Capsules
    Aniracetam Capsules
    Optimal Choline Complex

    • Muriel Laumark says:

      Hi Rachel! It looks like your order will ship today and generally takes about 4 days to deliver. You’ll receive an email with tracking as soon as the order ships. Please let us know if you need anything further in the meantime. We appreciate your business!

  9. Ale says:

    Hey guys, I received my order quite a while ago. There was a micro red scoop and an even smaller micro green scoop. May I know how much can each scoop take? This wasn’t indicated anywhere.

  10. reece says:

    Hi there,

    You mention different people have different biochemistry. Could you either explain more please or point me to somewhere that offers a detailed rundown of this? I tried Alpha Brain in the past and found them awful – at best no improvement, and at worst discomfort and negative effects. I remain most interested in the subject, but would like to know what my biochemistry is and then work from there as opposed to just a suck it and see approach. For example, I tried 23andme dna analysis but my sample came back as error and I have not as yet re-submitted. There are bound to be ways of establishing my biochemistry, for example medichecks have a biochemistry test but it says it is for kidney check. Not sure that that is really what I am after, I want to have a list of my biochemistry that I can check against various nootropics and how I may fare with each. Thanks.

    Thank you.

    • Eric Balaster says:

      Hi Reece,

      Thanks for your comment. Disclaimer: We are not doctors and the following is not intended to be medical advice.

      Unfortunately, humans are not quiet at the point where you can have a list of your biochemistry, as we don’t fully understand the human genome yet, although we’ve identified genes responsible for certain things. I sincerely believe that genetic data will become a very important part of medicine in the next decades. 23andme is a start with genotyping (smarter everyday has a good video on this: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U3EEmVfbKNs) which will provide you some useful information in combination with some 3rd party tools. I’ve seen users report that the 23andMe data, along with third party tools suggest they should avoid methyl-based vitamin B as one example (and to supplement with cyanocobalamin, or hydroxocobalamin rather than methylcobalamin).

      To really get a better idea of your individual biochemistry there are also plethora of blood tests where you can look for nutrient deficiencies (Vitamin D, Magnesium, and Choline are particularly common), or blood allergens among other things. Part of the reason we built this company is because of products like Alpha Brain that have a cocktail of ingredients and only might work for ~60% of the population; Our goal was to offer individual ingredients (we carry very few blends/stacks), so users can take a particular substance to see if they benefit or not, essentially working to create their own personalize “stack/blend”. Anecdotal reports over particular substances indicate that not everyone reacts the same; your experience with Alpha Brain is a perfect example of this. You might have a problem with 1 or 2 of the ingredients in Alpha Brain, but you would never know it unless you could take those ingredients individually. This is also one of the reasons that we offer a money back guarantee, so you try particular items, and if they don’t work, simply return them; however if they do work, you can build upon that by adding other supplements.

  11. Dana Syler says:

    I absolutely love your products. Especially, the Adrafinil and the Acetyl L-Carnitlne HCL together. I don’t know exactly what stacking means, so could you help me with that? It sounds like I should also get some Choline, and Noopept. Would taking all this together be to much? I take Adrafinil thru the week and layoff it on weekends, but take Acetyl everyday. I also bought some Phenyletethylamine (PEA), but I’m not crazy about it. I have bought from Nootropics Depot and Peak, but I like you the best. I am 60 years old and I’m running around like crazy. One thing I have really noticed is that I can take less of my pain medication. I have horrible chronic back pain, awful, awful inflammation, and I swear it helps with that and does not interfere with my sleep. I am so happy I found Nootropics. Thank you.

    • Eric Balaster says:

      Hi Dana,

      When taking more than one supplement you are creating a stack. Honestly, many have good results with Noopept and a Cholinegeric (which generally includes Acetyl L-Carnitine). Of course if you purchase Noopept and don’t like it, we’d gladly refund your purchase. We appreciate your business, let us know if there’s anything else we can do to make your experience a pleasant one.

      Best Regards,

  12. Lisa says:

    Hello, I am interested in purchasing Adrafinil, however the ingredients photo is cut off on right and left borders. I have Celiac and need to verify that there is NO Gluten in this particular item. Is gluten a filler in any of your products? Anxious to place an order so please reply to [email protected]
    Thank you in advance for your assistance

  13. Frank McCormick says:

    I am 67 years old and a Chem Eng. I purchased your Racetam stack about a month ago. When I was in my teens my buddies and I had a little game where one would write a random multidigit number, the other would look at it for 60 seconds and then try to repeat it either forward or backward later in the day. In my teens I could do a 27 digit number. In my early 60s I could only do 12.
    After taking your racetam stack I started testing myself, started out at 12 and am up to 27 as of last week. Will try 30 next week before I run out. Will do without for a month to see if my memory drops off. Maybe I am just remembering how to memorize better? I do have better concentration at work. After the racetams are out of my system I plan to do a similar test with a Adrafinil stack. Any comments or advice? After the Adrafinil test any comments about potentially combining the 2.

    • Eric Balaster says:

      Hi Frank,

      Thanks for your feedback! Racetams have been studied for their use in improving memory. Adrafinil on the other hand is a precursor to modafinil, and although modafinil has been shown to improve cognitive function, the research suggests that this is due to improved concentration and alertness. Adrafinil should be cycled (or only take 2 or 3 days a week) while the racetams have a very good safety profile and there are plenty of anecdotal reports that suggest users have taken certain racetams daily for years. If you see good results from both individually, you’d most likely have a good experience when combining the two, essentially making a nice personalized stack for yourself.

  14. jonathan.impact says:

    I tried Piracetam, Oxiracetam, Aniracetam & Optimal Choline Complex for about 15 days and could tell no noticeable difference. I contacted Pure Nootropics about their 30 day return policy (aware that half needed to be available to ship back-reasonable). I spent just under $120 and when I reached out to support I received this reply.

    “Sorry to hear you were not satisfied with your purchase. It looks like only the Piracetam 150g powder is eligible for refund as we do not accept returns for bundled products, as stated on both the product page and terms and conditions. As far as returning the powder, you do not need an RMA, you only need to include your name and order number with the product.”

    My point is, as usual, read the fine print. There’s no asterix on the home page after “30 day money back guarantee”. Apparently, it depends.

    • Eric Balaster says:

      Hi Jonathan,

      We appreciate your feedback, and sincerely apologize if you felt like this policy was unclear. As the bundles are significantly discounted, we do not offer our normal 30-day money back guarantee on these items. We do indicate this on both the product page itself as well as in our terms and conditions, which are agreed to at the time of purchase. In the future we will do our best to make this clear to our customers, as it is absolutely not our intention to deceive. Please feel free to contact us if you have any further questions or concerns.

      We appreciate your business.

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